Thursday, February 26, 2015

Rush explains Net Neutrality

Because he loves freedom, Rush Limbaugh tries valiantly to warn people about what Net Neutrality is really about. Go here to read his remarks.

Left-wing war on long-term mating

Chateau Heartiste tonight features a scientific study that shows that
feminism is about changing society from long-term to short term mating. It explains why they defend women being sluts. It explains why they defend women cuckolding. It explains why they defend and agitate for women to pursue careers and achieve self-provisioning sufficiency. And it explains why they try to change the culture to support these values and necessarily oppose their anti/inverse values.

Thus, there is no right-wing war on women. There is a right wing war on the short-term mating or feminist or matriarchal morph.

Likewise there is a left-wing war on the long-term mating or anti-feminist or patriarchal morph.

And here’s the catch: most women are in the long-term mating / anti-feminist / patriarchal morph.

In other words. feminism is anti-(the majority of)-women.
Read more here.

Investigative journalist exposes medical marijuana sales to teens

A journalist does his job.

How is Rahm Emanuel doing?

Despite the fact that Obama came in to Chicago to campaign for Rahm Emanuel earlier this month, Chicagoans voted to force him to compete in a runoff election with Chuy Garcia in April. Garcia had the support of the Chicago Teachers Union, which is unhappy that Emanuel has forced the closure of fifty schools and opposes locally elected school boards. Teachers Union interim President Jesse Sharkey describes Emanuel as "pushy and arrogant."
Read more here.

Who bankrolled today's successful takeover of the internet?

Now they tell us who is behind Net Neutrality: George Soros! Yes, it passed today, and today the Washington Examiner has a story by Paul Bedard saying that the Soros group Open Society Foundations, along with the Ford Foundation, have given over $196 million to pro Net Neutrality groups.
Some of those supported by the two groups’ funding have also worked the White House, notably John Podesta, former Center for American Progress head and now expected to run Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
Read more here.

Hillary Clinton's contempt for the public's right to know

I really admire the Judicial Watch organization. When politicians or bureaucrats try to keep the public from finding out what they are doing, Judicial Watch pries the information out of them by filing Freedom of Information Act lawsuits. Andrew McCarthy tells us today about the latest Judicial Watch accomplishment:
From the very first moments of the terrorist attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi on September 11, 2012, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her top aides were advised that the compound was under a terrorist attack. In fact, less than two hours into the attack, they were told that the al-Qaeda affiliate in Libya, Ansar al-Sharia, had claimed responsibility.

Despite this evidence that her top staffers were informed from the start that a terrorist attack was underway and that an al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorist group had claimed credit for it, Secretary Clinton issued an official statement claiming the assault may have been in “response to inflammatory material posted on the Internet.”

The revelations in the newly released e-mails were unveiled by Judicial Watch this afternoon at a press conference in Washington. In a press statement, Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton asserted that the e-mails left “no doubt that Hillary Clinton’s closest advisers knew the truth about the Benghazi attack from almost the moment it happened.” Mr. Fitton further opined that “it is inescapable that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton knowingly lied when she planted the false story about ‘inflammatory material being posted on the Internet.’ The contempt for the public’s right to know is evidenced not only in these documents but also in the fact that we had to file a lawsuit in federal court to obtain them.”
Read more here.

Jeb Bush interview with Hugh Hewitt

Recently Hugh Hewitt interviewed Jeb Bush. Hugh asked Jeb
...where do you see the source of the radicalism, the Islamist violence? What’s the root source? We heard Marie Harf say it’s joblessness, in part. What does Jeb Bush think?

JB: I just cannot believe that a spokesman for our government would say that. It is deeply disturbing to me that this is the language that’s used in the Obama administration, that it’s an isolated act if it was in Paris, or that joblessness creates despair that creates this radical behavior, that it’s a law enforcement incident and all these things. It really makes it harder to garner the necessary support in our own country and around the world for what this is. This is radical Islam. And these are barbarians. And they want to destroy Western civilization. I don’t think that’s a gross exaggeration, and that’s what, if you believe, if you start with that premise, you have a completely different strategy.
Read more here.
Hewitt does not ask any questions about Jeb's unpopularity with conservative Republicans. Perhaps that is because Hewitt, himself, is out of touch with conservatives!

Is Obama a Christian?

Matt Walsh asks,
Do you know who the media DIDN’T asked about Obama’s religion while Obama was running for president? Obama. And now they’re quizzing the governor of Wisconsin about it? Insane.

...You never win, no matter what, under any circumstance, when the liberal media set out to trap you. It doesn’t matter what you say or how you say it.

What would have been the appropriate way to respond? Walsh suggests:
Do I think Obama is a Christian? Do I look like his biographer? Why not ask me his shoe size next? Maybe his preferred Sleep Number setting? Truly, sir, this line of questioning is the dumbest thing I’ve encountered since the last time I encountered a reporter from the Washington Post. Why in the name of all that is holy are you quizzing me about the president’s religion? Why don’t you quiz him? Oh, that’s right, you’re a groveling coward and a pathetic excuse for a journalist. You forget that you’re job is to get to the truth and enlighten the people, not to seek out Republicans for cheap gotcha moments. You, sir, are a fraud, a disgrace, and an embarrassment to what’s left of your dying profession. This president has prosecuted, spied on, and stifled the media, yet you still carry his water like a spineless vassal. Why don’t you shine his shoes while you’re at it? You should be questioning authority, not shielding it from scrutiny, you shameless hack. I will not legitimize you by answering this question. Instead, I will pray that the Holy Spirit sees fit to endow you with even a shred of integrity and courage, so that you might one day decide to do something that in some way resembles journalism. Until then, please leave my presence before I become physically ill. Thank you, sir, good night.

As everyone has heard, Obama came of age in Jeremiah Wright’s church, learning that white people are bad and God hates America. He was indoctrinated into a heresy called Black Liberation Theology, which teaches, among other things, that Jesus was a black man who came to free the black race, and that whites can earn salvation through paying reparations to black people.

Now I don’t mean to turn this into a homily, but it is interesting to note that Jesus said “by their fruits you will know them.” So far all this talk about how we shouldn’t “judge” others, it seems that Christ is specifically telling us to make judgments about a person based on what they do. How else could we come to know a man by his actions? The insinuation here is that sometimes a person might say one thing but do another, and Jesus wants us to look at what they do and make judgments accordingly. That doesn’t mean we’re omnipotent; it just means we shouldn’t go around like blind idiots (my word, not His) believing everything everyone says, no matter how they actually conduct themselves.

What about Obama's consistent support for abortion throughout his career? Walsh writes,
We know that Obama is either lying about his belief in Christ (my guess) or he honestly believes that Christ blesses abortion and wants to see more of His children ripped to shreds and tossed in medical waste dumpsters. Obama hasn’t just done every conceivable thing in his power to bring about that end, he has done so while invoking the name of God. What sort of Christianity is this? And I hate to think what sort of Christians we are, that so many of us think it impolite to loudly say: “If you believe in a Jesus who celebrates the slaughter of babies, you do not believe in Jesus.”

While many of us try to equivocate and make excuses for men like Obama, it was Jesus who spoke out in terms that, nowadays, would lead to Him being scolded and disowned by many Christians. Christ Himself, who loved children and made it clear that the smallest among us should always be welcomed and protected, said:

If anyone causes harm to these little ones, it would be better for him to have a millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.

Did you catch that? Can we all take a moment to let that one sink in (no pun intended)? You would be better off dead than harming a child. It would be wiser to literally drown in the ocean than do anything that would bring harm, whether physical or spiritual, to a child. That’s God talking. Do we think He was joking? Exaggerating? Just blowing off steam? Does he need to calm down and be reasonable, as pro-lifers are constantly told when they make statements not nearly as strident and damning?

No. This was a direct statement. A command. A promise. When you bring harm to the innocent, you commit a sin so terrible that physical death would be preferable. That’s how much Jesus loves children. He loves them far more deeply and eternally than you love even your own kids. So how could anyone try to turn that Jesus, this Jesus, the Jesus, into a God who blesses abortion? And how could they commit such a heresy and still expect to be considered a Christian in any substantive way?

Walsh would ask Obama:
if I were in a position where I could pose a question to the commander in chief, I’d ask this:

Mr. President, do you believe that Jesus Christ condones, endorses, blesses, loves, or otherwise supports a woman’s right to choose abortion?
Read more here.

Can you change your attitude?

Marc and Angel remind us at Unbounded Spirit that even when we cannot change anything else, we can still change our attitude.
Have no clue how to change your perception of things – and improve your attitude? Here are seven easy ways to start:
1. Still you mind.
2. Change you focus. From the awareness of your thoughts and emotions you become able to consciously redirect your focus. There are no hopeless situations; there are only people who have grown hopeless about them. Don’t let the pain make you desperate. Don’t let the negativity wear off on you.
3. Surrender your worries and embrace acceptance.
4. Practice gratitude.
5. Reframe your struggles as growing pains.
6. Look for the beginning in every ending.
7. When all else fails, use your body.
Read more here.

"You had Marshawn Lynch and didn't run straight ahead!"



Thanks to Webutante

Are you a good conversationalist?

Here are some excerpts from a Business Insider column by Jacqueline Whitmore, who tells us that,
you don't have to be born with the gift of gab to become an expert communicator.

Here are six tips to help you become a better listener and actually hear what others are saying, not just what you think they are saying or what you want to hear.
1. Show a real interest.

When you speak to someone, especially in a busy or loud environment, give him or her your full attention.

2. Use the magic words: "Tell me." ...Ask open-ended questions and then listen. For example, you may say, "Tell me, Joe, what prompted you to start your own business?"

3. Say the other person's name.

4. Agree heartily; disagree softly. If you strongly disagree with someone's opinion, softly communicate that you don't see it the same way. Ask questions and allow the person to fully express his or her reasoning.

5. Talk less; listen more.

When someone speaks to you, listen with your whole body. Nod, make eye contact, and be fully engaged in what they have to say. Attentive listening will build trust and help you establish a professional relationship. When given the opportunity, ask pertinent questions, which will help demonstrate your sincere interest.

If you don't understand, ask for specifics. You could ask a clarifying question such as, "If I hear you correctly, you're saying…Is that right?" It's best to confirm your assumptions rather than risk a miscommunication.

6. Don't interrupt or change the subject. Always permit the other person enough time to finish their thought before you respond. Your patience and thoughtfulness will be appreciated.

Read more here. : http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/235615#ixzz3Ssf4R500
Thanks to Webutante.

Does evil exist?

How Obama might edit FDR's speech



Thanks to Mostly Cajun, All American and Opinionated

Do we recognize it?



Thanks to Mostly Cajun, All American and Opinionated, who writes an essay this week on how history repeats itself.

Whining, narcissistic victimology

Some excerpts from an interview with Camille Paglia in America the national Catholic review:
...American and British feminism has amazingly collapsed backward again into whining, narcissistic victimology. As in the hoary old days of Gloria Steinem and her Stalinist cohorts, we are endlessly subjected to the hackneyed scenario of history as a toxic wasteland of vicious male oppression and gruesome female suffering. College campuses are hysterically portrayed as rape extravaganzas where women are helpless fluffs with no control over their own choices and behavior.

...After my parents moved to Syracuse, however, I was progressively stuck with far blander churches and less ethnic congregations. Irish Catholicism began to dominate—a completely different brand, with its lesser visual sense and its tendency toward brooding guilt and ranting fanaticism. I suspect that the nun who finally alienated me from the church must have been Irish! It was in religious education class (for which Catholic students were released from public school on Thursday afternoons), held on that occasion in the back pews of the church. I asked the nun what still seems to me a perfectly reasonable and intriguing question: if God is all-forgiving, will he ever forgive Satan? The nun's reaction was stunning: she turned beet red and began screaming at me in front of everyone. That was when I concluded there was no room in the Catholic Church of that time for an inquiring mind.
Read more here.

"How dumb do the Clintons think we are?"

John Hinderaker asks at PowerLine, "Will the Clinton's greed do them in?"
The Washington Post reports that while Hillary was Secretary of State, “[t]he Clinton Foundation accepted millions of dollars from seven foreign governments.” How many millions? Weirdly, the Post doesn’t say. It does tell us that as of 2008–before Hillary became Secretary of State–”Saudi Arabia had given between $10 million and $25 million.”

Accepting donations to a family foundation from foreign governments while serving as Secretary of State represents extraordinarily bad judgment. Sure, most of the money went to bona fide charitable causes. But there are any number of ways to donate to, say, earthquake or flood relief. Does anyone seriously think that a foreign government would choose the Clinton Foundation as its preferred charitable vehicle unless it sought to curry favor with a) a former president and still leading figure in the Democratic Party, b) the Secretary of State, and c) a possible future president? How dumb do the Clintons think we are?

Moreover, there is reason to suspect that the Clinton Foundation has served as a slush fund to finance the Clintons’ private enjoyments. The New York Post reported in 2013 that the Clinton Foundation had spent more than $50 million on travel expenses since 2003. Think about that: $50 million!

Presumably when Bill rode the Lolita Express, the bills were paid by his convicted sex offender pal Jeffrey Epstein. But who knows what discreditable episodes may have been funded by the Clinton Foundation and its overseas donors, if any journalist took the trouble to check?

Photo by airport-data.com
This is the jet of convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, used eleven times to fly Bill Clinton around, according to flight logs released today.
Read more here.

From a "normal Muslim family"

The Washington Post is reporting that the masked man featured in several beheading videos is Londoner Mohammed Emwazi. He has a college degree in computer programming, and is from a well-to-do family. The British newspaper The Independent interviews his neighbors, who describe his family as a "normal Muslim family."

These are some of the victims who have been slaughtered in his videos.
Read more here.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

"It was going to happen"

"We came as a pair."

"There was a kid being picked on. My brother stood up for him and confronted the guy."

"I always knew that these feelings would only get stronger." "A really strong beat." "I wake up every morning feeling more thankful and grateful and appreciative of this gift that was given."

"When someone passes, you don't get answers. You have to choose your own beliefs. My brother wanted so much to make sure that I was taken care of."

Ask not what your country can do for you...Ask what you can do for your country



Thanks to Curt Dale

An Obama fireside chat

I missed this one three days ago from Victor Davis Hanson. He tries his hand at satire, imagining what Obama would have said in a fireside chat to the nation about the Nazis, if he were president in 1939. I give you Franklin Delano Obama.

Read the whole thing here.

Junkie Logic

Did you ever smoke? My friends and I tried it one time when I was in the 8th grade. All of us were athletes. We were at Gary Hamill's apartment. We all left coughing. That was it. I never did it again, mainly because I don't like coughing, and I wanted to be in the best shape for athletics that I could be.

Ace of Spades got hooked on cigarettes, and he writes about what it was like to quit. He recommends a self-help book by Alan Carr entitled The Easy Way to Stop Smoking. Ace writes:
I'd really recommend the book. I don't know what it is about it.

I guess that most of what it says is obvious, if you bothered to think about it,, but as an addict, you are deliberately avoiding thinking about the basis of your addiction, so it's helpful to have someone else state the obvious to your face.

The book, by the way, stays away from the scary stuff about smoking, almost entirely. There are no pictures of diseased lungs or gums or that sort of thing. The author's notion is that making someone nervous immediately makes them reach for a cigarette so discussing the dire health effects of smoking is actually counterproductive.

Instead he sticks to a softer approach -- won't you be happier when you don't have to to worry about only having three cigarettes left?

You owe it to yourselves to quit. And not just "try;" let's face it, "try" is how people announce "I intend to fail at this, and not even put in much effort towards it, but I want the moral consolation of having supposedly 'tried.'"

It's really not that hard. But it is necessary that you decide that you're going to stop. Not that you'll try, but that you will.

Definitely read the book. Like any other addict, you probably get a little stressed when you think about going off the drug that has its hooks in you. But just like a junkie doesn't actually need heroin, you don't actually need tobacco, though the Junkie Centers of your brain are probably making a pretty strong case right now that you really do need Your Friend Mr. Cigarette.

But you don't. Of course you don't. Every aspect of your health, including your alertness and mental acuity, was stronger before you started smoking, and they can get back close to their Factory Default settings if you quit.

Smoking has literally made your life worse in every way, but, like most addictive drugs, it has got a little foothold in an important part of your brain getting you to convince yourselves that it's somehow "pleasurable" being sicker and weaker than you would be without the drug.

...All the crap that you "need" cigarettes or that they're somehow "good" or a "reward" is just bullshit. It's just Junkie Logic. All a lie. Not an ounce of truth in it.

Anyway, I don't want to give the book away, but it does kind of get you pissed off at cigarettes, and makes you want to quit them, out of spite, if nothing else.
Read more here.

Hillary's Deputy for Counter-Terrorism Arrested for Soliciting Sex from a Minor

James Rosen of Fox News has broken another story. This one is about Hillary Clinton's State Department official in charge of federal counterterrorism programs.
Fairfax County Police officials say Daniel Rosen was arrested by a county detective about noon at his Washington, D.C. home after he allegedly sought to arrange sex with a minor. The detective, a female officer working in the county's Child Exploitation Unit, had been posing as the minor in online exchanges with Rosen, police said.
Read more here.

Ace of Spades comments:
But Hillary will presumably not be asked if she supports her former deputy's trolling for underaged sex, just as they won't ask her that as regards her husband's.

Pedophile Island? What kind of country do we live in where a guy has taken multiple trips to Pedophile Island but apparently we can't wait to elect that guy's wife as president?
Read more here.

Vote for me, I'm a woman!

Ashe Schow writes in the Washington Examiner that Hillary Clinton
appears to be making the shift toward running a campaign based on women’s issues.

..But if her platform of largely focusing on women’s issues turns off male voters, the strategy could fail, as it did for former Democratic Sen. Mark "Uterus" Udall in Colorado.

Democrats have a huge problem with white male voters. If that group feels threatened by Clinton’s women focus and returns unusually large Republican margins, that will help the GOP nominee. If white male Democrats don’t think they’d be adequately represented by Clinton, they could stay home, while white male Republicans could be galvanized into voting against her.

So before she goes down this path, Clinton might want to study Udall’s failures.
Read more here.

Cyberthreats

Sean Gallagher writes at ars technica,
Overall, the feds haven't had great success in stopping cyber-attacks."We don't have enough skill level in law enforcement and investigation organizations to counter that threat," said Silent Circle's Ford. "The FBI is willing to pay cyber people up to $110,000 a year. That's way off par for what the rest of industry is willing to pay. If you're good enough with bug bounty programs, you could find one bounty that could pay that much. The FBI is not going to get the kind of talent needed to truly fight this kind of cyber crime."

...There's only one thing that's guaranteed at this point: the computer security community won't be facing a job shortage anytime soon.
Read more here.

"Orwellian"

Judge Andrew Napolitano has spoken out against Obama's proposal to use the FCC to take over the internet.
"Net neutrality," which is being pushed by President Barack Obama, will eventually lead to control of content on the Internet, says Fox News legal analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano.

"This is so Orwellian that they want to call it 'net neutrality.' It's anything but neutral," Napolitano said Tuesday on Fox Business Network's "Cavuto."

The administration wants to regulate the cost of the Internet by allocating the cost to servers rather than having the free market allocate it, "which has worked magnificently and with near perfection," Napolitano said. "Once he is able to regulate costs, then the next step would be to regulate content."

Obama has had no success getting Congress to pass a net neutrality law, so he is trying to get the Federal Communication Commission to take over the issue. The problem, Napolitano said, is that the FCC can regulate only what Congress has authorized it to regulate.

"It doesn't regulate cable television, it doesn't regulate the Internet. They will have to aggregate to themselves, the commissioners, out of nowhere the authority to regulate the Internet," he said.

The FCC regulates broadcast television and radio and also controls content, Napolitano said.

Individual stations, in exchange for a broadcast license, have "agreed not to say certain things, and to say certain things," Napolitano said. "Who the heck wants to see the Internet become that?"

Do you love the internet like I do?

Today on his talk show on radio station KHOW Michael D. Brown talked about tomorrow's FCC vote on regulating the internet. Brown asked, "Having seen what has happened to health insurance in the past four years, how could anyone favor the federal government getting involved in regulating the internet?"
Brown called it fascist. Here is the dictionary defnition of fascism:
a. A system of government marked by centralization of authority under a dictator, a capitalist economy subject to stringent governmental controls, violent suppression of the opposition, and typically a policy of belligerent nationalism and racism.
b. A political philosophy or movement based on or advocating such a system of government.


Why the left stole the word "choice"



Thanks to Margo Knutson

Man who has been blind for ten years can see again

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

More Christians abducted today in Syria

Dozens of Assyrian Christians have been kidnapped by the Islamic State today. Here is Fox News:
Islamic State militants have abducted as many as 90 Assyrian Christians, including women and children, after overrunning several small villages in northeast Syria, an activist group and relatives said Tuesday.
Read more here.

Medieval studies and penal justice

Gagdad Bob notes that
the Obama administration thinks the problem of ISIS can be solved by a job fair and maybe a little counseling on how to get that résumé in shape. Like, don't say "spent two years decapitating infidels in the desert." Rather, something like "two year program of medieval studies with subspecialty in penal justice."

Back off man, he's a psychologist! Immersed as Obama is in Marxist ideology, Gagdad Bob believes that
ideology is a kind of readymade, or "off the rack" mental illness. An all around ideology will have various compartments in which to "plug in" one's complexes, drives, and conflicts, e.g., rage, envy, greed, the will to power, sexual confusion, desire to control others, inferiority, meaninglessness, etc. No matter how crazy you are, liberalism has a place for you. It's a big tent!

The bad news: its "physical analogy is cancer." Why cancer? Because cancer involves a revolutionary part that declares independence from the whole, and presumes to be the whole. 'Til death do you part. A cancer is ultimately suicidal. As is liberalism. It is unsustainable -- fiscally, morally, economically, spiritually, educationally, environmentally, aesthetically, demographically, etc.

In the comments section at One Cosmos, Buttercup adds:
I find it not the least surprising that Obama shows a decided lack of interest in anything that might challenge his world view. It's hard work to remain that arrogantly smug in the face of constant failure.
Read more here.

Have you thought about turning off the TV?

Ace of Spades is thinking about quitting watching t.v. I say go for it, Ace. The only t.v. I watch is at the gym with the sound turned off. I switch it to Fox News and watch the closed captioning in between sets. I agree with all these things Ace is saying today:
If I write down all the shows I watch, I think I'll be embarrassed and sad to see how many hours I sit as a voluntary, unmoving, passive spectator, watching other people perform Shows and other people perform in Sports and other people doing things.

Literally doing anything is more worthy than sitting in front of the Idiot Box to be anaesthetized and hypnotized by stupefying beams of leftism.

There is a reason this country is in terrible shape. It's because it's people have become slack in their thinking. Lazy. Stupid.

And right in front of me is a big 47" rectangular pill that makes people complacent, fat, unhealthy, dumb, disconnected from humanity, and disinterested in their own futures, nevermind their country's.

TV is compromise, TV is defeat, TV is acceptance, TV is mediocrity.

And it's an industry held almost entirely in Enemy Hands, by the idiot descendants of carnival-barkers and pornographers who just happened to realize that every new technology which permits people to live less life will be a financial winner.

We can free ourselves and maybe, even, free this country.

We can Kill The Messenger.

So my idea is to start, as a movement, boycotting TV almost entirely, picking up, get this, new skills and hobbies and interests to fill the time we would otherwise be spending in front of the Radioactive Drug of the television screen.

Joining book clubs. Going on walks with our (get this) spouses and kids. Even doing "nerdy" stuff like bird watching, which, quite frankly, seems a whole lot more vital and vigorous than watching the shit they've thrown together to assassinate our brains tonight.
Read more here.

Hockey stupidity

How stupid is this? Two hockey goons go after each other, then, knowing that they have each made their fans happy, end it with high fives.

How about a sign encouraging concealed carry?

Michael D. Brown posts on his Facebook page this sign from Minnesota's Mall of America.

Terrorists are urging fellow Islamists to attack America's malls, and are specifically using images from the Mall of America to promote the idea of attacking. Does the sign above give you confidence that the Mall of America would be a safe place to visit? It doesn't for me. Similar signs were posted here in Colorado at the Aurora theater where an attacker opened fire, killing and injuring many unarmed people.

Gimme five!

This post will not make me popular with my kids, or with other conservatives. But, if the purpose of this blog is for me to share what I believe is important, then I have no alternative. Here it is: I applaud Michelle Obama's attempts to persuade us to eat healthy foods! Look around the next time you go to the supermarket. Notice what people are buying. Notice what is happening to their bodies. Is that really what we want for our country?

Can he handle Hillary?

Dick Morris is starting to wonder whether Scott Walker can handle himself on the national stage. In particular, can he take on Hillary? View the Morris video here.

A group hug

Ross Kaminsky writes about the Rudy Guiliani controversy:
...If Barack Obama wants to turn America into an insolvent social-welfare state like so much of Western Europe, does it really matter if it’s because he loves America or because he hates it? If the president wants to put America in the weakest international and military position it has been in for generations, who cares if it is because he hears the voice of Frank Marshall Davis or because he believes that our enemies will be pacified by a group hug? Hey, maybe they love America too!
Read more here.

How self censorship prevents Radio Liberty and Voice of America from satisfying the spiritual needs of their listenersi

National Review today reprints an essay written in 1982 by Alexandr Solzhenitsyn.
In the 30s — during the most dreadful time of Stalinist terror, when Stalin was exterminating many millions of people — editorials in the United States proclaimed the Soviet Union to be a country of social justice. President Roosevelt extended a helping hand to Stalin, and American businessmen rushed to provide the technological assistance without which Stalin could not have built his industrial base. And at the end of the war, America and Britain made Stalin a gift of all of Eastern Europe. It should have been understood that the Soviet rulers were enemies of their own people. But this was not understood.

...Failing to understand this was the great historical mistake that Roosevelt made in the Thirties and Forties. This mistake cost the Free World half of the globe — perhaps less than half in terms of territory, but more than half in population. And today the greatest danger is that the Free World’s leaders will repeat Roosevelt’s fatal mistake.

In fact, the same mistake has been repeated over and over again through the years. For instance, with Tito. Tito was the murderer, the executioner, of his people. Right after World War II, he shot hundreds of thousands of his fellow citizens. He even shot down American civilian planes near the Austrian border. All this was forgiven (and worse, forgotten), and he has been held up as a great statesman. The same error was repeated again with Cuba. It was proclaimed in the Free World that what had taken place in Cuba was a people’s revolution. The same error was repeated again with North Vietnam. A totalitarian gang there seized the whole country, and American progressives proclaimed that it was a national movement for freedom. In Nicaragua, right under our nose, a totalitarian group of Communists seized power, and the Carter Administration hurried to help them financially.

The fatal historical mistake of liberalism is to see no enemy on the left, to consider that the enemy is always on the right.

...No matter what the Chinese rulers may say when they are looking for favors from the U.S., no Communist government ever cares about the rights, the development of its people. Communist governments are like cancerous tumors: they grow wildly and have two aims only: first, to strengthen their power, and second, to expand their boundaries. Those are the aims of the Chinese government, as they are those of the Soviet government.

...Not to know what is happening in and to your own country is crippling. That is why the Voice of America’s self-imposed limits are so misguided. What does the average Soviet citizen know about, say, Afghanistan? Everything he hears from the government is distorted. And yet the Voice of America, which could fill this gap, has placed limits on its own best sources of information. It refrains from using rich accumulations of material because it believes that it only has the right to broadcast in a way which will not irritate the Communist leaders.

...The greatest spiritual need of our people is to become aware of themselves. If during the past 30 years the Western broadcasts had helped our people remember who they were, helped them to rise spiritually to their feet, the entire world situation would be different. Our recent history has been trampled and distorted beyond recognition; everything we hear is saturated with propaganda. It is hard for Americans to imagine such ignorance. The average Soviet citizen in essence knows nothing: what were the causes of the Revolution; how it occurred, and how the Bolsheviks took it over and instituted totalitarian rule; what people’s movements there were against the Bolsheviks, and how they were suppressed; how our peasantry and our working class were destroyed by terrorist means. We need to know the truth about all this. If such knowledge were given us, we would — both civilian and soldier — become spiritually free of our government.

...Communist power seeks to deprive us of religion; and American radio broadcasts, directed by ideologues who accept the stupid premise that Russian Christianity is “reactionary,” follow the Communists’ lead.
Read more here.
I wonder what Solzhenitsyn would say today. I can't imagine that things have improved since 1982, with the ideologues currently in power in our government and media.

Obama's tentativeness must surely be proof of our guilt (in the eyes of Muslims)

Victor Davis Hanson notes that
Every time Obama “contextualizes,” Putin and ISIS grow bolder.
After detailing how Germans came to support Hitler, and how Russians have come to support Putin, Hanson looks at how Muslims have come to support Islamism:
By all accounts, only a tiny minority, perhaps no more than 2 or 3 percent, of Muslims in the Middle East actively supports ISIS and violent Islamic ideology. But various international polls also show a much higher level of approval for what Westerners would call Islamism or Islamic terrorism — as expressed by support for the tactic of suicide bombing or agreement with the late Osama bin Laden. Approval from this larger minority polls anywhere from 15 to 20 percent, depending on the country in question and the wording of the question. In other words, 60 to 80 million Muslims in the Middle East may, at least silently, condone almost any tactic felt necessary to further the cause of a purer Islam at the expense of the West in general and of what they would see as secularized or Westernized Muslim sellouts in their midst.

This minority of many millions of Muslims in the Middle East and in Europe resents the West. From the time in the morning when they get up and flip on their television sets to the instant they go to bed checking text messages on their smartphones, the West and Western technology are ubiquitous. But — radical Muslims demand, and the Muslim Street itself often wonders — why must this be so?

In terms of culture, the West, with its pornography, open and accepted homosexuality, radical feminism, atheism and agnosticism, lavish and unsustainable entitlements, declining birth rates, and fragmented families, surely does not deserve such global clout. What gives Europe and the United States — our generation’s version of a shrinking and rotting 15th-century Constantinople, whose riches properly belong to the stronger and more pious who can take them — such undeserved sway?

Islamism offers an easy answer, a ready exegesis far more comforting than the difficult-to-stomach but accurate assessment that the West embraces consensual government, free-market economics, capitalism, property rights, meritocracy, equality between the sexes, inclusiveness for minorities, and religious tolerance — and that such values in the end result in greater material wealth, more innovation, better technology, and in general more personal freedom.

...In this supposedly perverted climate, Islamism appeals to a large minority of the Middle East. It will bring back lost pride and assertiveness — a purposefulness, if you will — that transcends both the daily depression of the Middle East and the haughtiness of a spiritually lost West. If most disapprove publicly of ISIS’s more violent reckonings, privately they remain mostly silent, because there are things about such payback that are not always unwelcome. Certainly, for now, ISIS seems to be an ascendant movement where most others are descendant.

...Two other factors empower ISIS. Western diffidence and appeasement are interpreted as proof not just that the West is weak, but that its weakness arises from guilt and a tacit admission that Islamism is spot-on in its charges of Western culpability. Barack Obama reifies that message when he offers his confessional Al Arabiya interview, his platitudinous Cairo speech, his apology tour, and his euphemistic campaign to excise words such as “terrorism,” “Islamism,” and “radical Islam,” or when he admonishes Christians and Westerners generally about getting on their moral high horses despite having a cultural tradition of slavery, apartheid, inquisition, and crusading. If touchy and solicitous Western leaders are loath to challenge radical Islam’s charges against the West and instead seek any mechanism possible to avoid being offensive, such tentativeness must be proof of their guilt.

...Millions may not like ISIS, just as millions once were somewhat bothered by Hitler. They may prefer that its beheadings remain untelevised, or may frown on burning someone alive when the firing squad would do. But they most certainly will like the power, territory, and fear that ISIS commands — and the utter helplessness that follows in the once haughty West.

Appeasers like Obama do not like their enemies. They certainly do not feel that an Islamic Middle East is superior to America. But they do dwell on the faults rather than the achievements of their own culture. In their vanity they believe that their own estrangement from their culture is a result of their superiority, and thus they alone possess the wisdom and charisma to unlock the enigma of a Hitler or of radical Islam and to convince it of its own self-defeating aberrations. What is dangerous about a Chamberlain or an Obama is not just that they empower enemies of their country, but that by their own desperate attempts at magnanimity they earn from their enemies utter contempt, to the point that they encourage rather than deter aggression.

The more Obama contorts history and language to contextualize ISIS and its radical Islamic supporters, the more ISIS is likely to want to humiliate Obama — and the more Middle East Muslims will recalculate who is ascendant and powerful and who is not, and then make the necessary adjustments.
Read more here.

Promoting a self-invented phantom enemy

Violent Extremism. Remember those words. Memorize them like "Hope and Change." Those are the "in" words in Washington this week. Mark Steyn gets it:
"Islam has been woven into the fabric of our country since its founding," says the President. You might think that Islam has been entirely irrelevant to "the fabric of our country" for its first two centuries, and you might further think that Islam, being self-segregating, tends not to weave itself into anybody's fabric but instead tends to unravel it - as it's doing in, say, Copenhagen, where 500 mourners turned up for the funeral of an ISIS-supporting Jew-hating anti-free-speech murderer.

But President Obama knows better than you. So he organized a summit dedicated to creating and promoting a self-invented phantom enemy.

...We are at war with a depraved enemy, but we cannot be allowed to assert our moral superiority even to head-choppers, rapists, slavers and immolators. Thus the priority of Barack ("Hey, how 'bout those Crusades?") Obama has been to undermine our sense of probity, and make us not merely equivalent to but worse than our enemies. That was the purpose of this last week of Official Lies.
Read more here

Monday, February 23, 2015

Climb every mountain, ford every stream, follow every rainbow, till you find your dream...

Did you ever think you would hear Lady Gaga singing songs from The Sound of Music? In formal attire? Watch all the way to the end, as a fully clothed Julie Andrews, minus Ms. Gaga's tatoos, graciously appears on stage with Lady Gaga and congratulates her.

The fuss about Scott Walker not finishing his college degree

Robert Tracinski writes,
Given that no president since Reagan hasn’t been a graduate of either Harvard or Yale—and they haven’t even gotten close to matching the results of the bumpkin who graduated from Eureka College—it’s certainly reasonable to suspect that those Ivy League credentials aren’t all they’re cracked up to be.

But the whole controversy isn’t really about Scott Walker’s qualifications. It’s about something deeper.

...or the mainstream elites, particularly those at the top level in the media, a college education is not simply a means to an end. It is itself a key attainment that confers a special social status.

There are no real class divisions in America except one: the college-educated versus the non-college educated.

...You can see now what is fueling the reaction on the left. If Scott Walker can run for president, he is challenging the basic cultural class identity of the mainstream left. He is more than a threat to the Democrats’ hold on political power. He is a threat to the existing social order.
Read more here.

Unclassified photos of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs

Do you want to see some incredible photos that have just been declassified? They are of the two bombs that were loaded onto the Enola Gay for release over Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Story by Ryan Crierie, with many more photos.

This is a frame taken from a color movie taken of the sealant application, showing the color of the device and sealant/putty.

The aircraft that will carry the device is then backed up slowly over the pit.

Thanks to Lt. Col. Curt Dale

Guiliani's plea

"Mr. President, wake up! Come off the golf course!" Here is the speech by Rudy Guiliani that has stirred so much controversy.

The terrorists are connected by two things: a common ideology, and funding by Iran. For the purpose of defending the slaughter and desecration of human beings. Iran looked into the weak eyes of President Jimmy Carter, then they released the hostages the minute Ronald Reagan put his hand on the Bible. "Now, once again, they are looking into the eyes of a weak president, begging for agreement with Iran at all costs." This is like playing poker with a guy who cheated you twice before!" Iran should not be allowed to have any form of nuclear power. Putin watched Obama and said I can take advantage of this man, because he is weak.

In part two Mr. Guiliani talks about 3,000 people (the MEK?) who are being held captive in Iraq by the Iraqis and Iranians. They layed down their arms and allowed the American military to defend them, as we granted them asylum status. I have not read about this situation, have you? Guiliani wants to bring them to America, or at least we should give them the arms to defend themselves. He says that if our president had any honor, that's what he would do. But Obama is so intent on making a deal with Iran, that he is leaving those people there as sitting ducks.

Guiliani pleads for us to stop Obama's "selling us out to Iran like Chamberlain did with Hitler."




"Cool" Cuban Communism

Have you got your Che Guevara tee shirt yet? Isn't it cool? But wait...Guevara in the name of communism killed lots of people. He said, "We must eliminate all newspapers. We cannot make a revolution with a free press." Although the communist regime in Cuba outlawed labor unions, American teachers wear the cool tee shirt. The ideological fanaticism of men like Guevara is why the people of Cuba have remained poor since the 1959 communist revolution.

Is bankrupt Cuba a beacon of the future, or a museum of the past? No internet access! Michael Moynihan of the Daily Beast discusses it all with John Stossel of Fox News:

Badboy exaltation

Chateau Heartiste notices that
badboy exaltation is occurring simultaneously with a muddled feminist empowerment pop culture fad (think Katy Perry singing “you’re gonna hear me roar”).

...If there is a social trend toward women freely expressing their deepest desires for hounds and heartbreakers, this reinvigorated female lust on public display may owe itself to the context within which pop singers, and their fans, circulate. As CH explained, a society that is bottom heavy with mewling, supplicating beta males would push women into the aloof and indifferent arms of alpha jerks. And when the bottled-up pussy pressure becomes too much to bear, even Wall-impact cougars like Sia can’t help but throw their natural romantic constituency — older, defeated, weak beta males ready to settle down with any old slutty cow — under the bus.
Read more here.

The fabric

At PJ Media Robert Spencer writes:
Last Sunday, in his message congratulating Muslims on Eid al-Fitr, the holiday marking the end of the fasting month of Ramadan, Barack Obama wrote: “Eid also reminds us of the many achievements and contributions of Muslim Americans to building the very fabric of our nation and strengthening the core of our democracy.”

What are some of those contributions? Spencer can think of five.

5. Getting us here in the first place
Every schoolchild knows, or used to know, that in 1492 Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue and discovered America while searching for a new, westward sea route to Asia. But why was he searching for a new route to Asia? Because the fall of Constantinople to the Muslims in 1453 closed the trade routes to the East. This was devastating for European tradesmen, who had until then traveled to Asia for spices and other goods by land. Columbus’s voyage was trying to ease the plight of these merchants by bypassing the Muslims altogether and making it possible for Europeans to reach India by sea.

4. Slavery
... if it weren’t for the Islamic slave industry on the African continent, there would have been no slavery in the New World, and none of the attendant national traumas that reverberate down to this day. This means, of course, that one way that Muslims have contributed to building the very fabric of our nation is by setting in motion the chain of events that led to ongoing racial tensions in the U.S., and ultimately to the election to the presidency of Barack Obama.

3. The Marines
...“From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli…” The line from the Marines’ hymn commemorates the Marines’ actions during the First Barbary War (1801-1805), the first war the United States fought against Islamic jihadists. The war came about because President Thomas Jefferson refused to accede to the Barbary states’ demands for tribute payments – demands made in accord with the Qur’an’s dictum that the “People of the Book” must be made to “pay the jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued” (9:29). The Barbary pirates, also acting in accord with Islamic law regarding the kidnapping, enslaving and ransoming of non-Muslims, were seizing American ships and enslaving the crews, demanding exorbitant ransoms for their release.

The Marines put a stop to all that, and the line from the Marines’ hymn shows how pivotal their actions on the Barbary coast were to forming the Marine ethos. So for the Marines, too, we have Muslims to thank.

2. A drastically weakened economy
...Osama bin Laden explained that he mounted the 9/11 jihad terror attacks in order to weaken the American economy. In October 2004 he exulted: “Al-Qaeda spent $500,000 on the event, while America, in the incident and its aftermath, lost — according to the lowest estimate — more than $500 billion, meaning that every dollar of al-Qaeda defeated a million dollars.” Then there are the further billions lost since 2004, and the billions wasted on the nation-building misadventures in Iraq and Afghanistan – such that if he were alive today, bin Laden could look with satisfaction on an America with a severely weakened economy, high unemployment, and no imminent prospects for genuine recovery.

We experience the effects of this every day in a thousand ways, large and small – in an America that is poorer, uglier, meaner, more dangerous, less productive and less efficient than it was on September 10, 2001. A veritable contribution to the fabric of our nation indeed.

1. The TSA
Once romantic and even glamorous, air travel today is an uncomfortable, uncertain, unpleasant, inhospitable, cramped affair involving intrusive and inefficient security procedures that annoy and humiliate travelers. At least everyone is humiliated equally. Passengers are poked, prodded, threatened, herded like cattle, beleaguered with delays, and treated as if they were criminals in a politically correct attempt to avoid focusing on the true source of the problem.

Meanwhile, the TSA and the Department of Homeland Security are two new bloated and ever-growing bureaucracies, further draining the already depleted American taxpayer.

And that, surely, is the crowning contribution that Muslims have made to “building the very fabric of our nation” as it stands today.
Read more here.

Defending Rudy Guiliani's remarks

Michael D. Brown is a former Undersecretary of the Department of Homeland Security. Now he has a talk show on Denver radio station KHOW. Like Rudy Guiliani, Brown has received a torrent of criticism from the left for writing these words on his Facebook page:
The lens of history will show Barack Obama told us, through words and deeds, how he would fundamentally transform the United States. But until Rudy Giuliani spoke up Republicans were generally scared to say what they knew in their hearts was true. We are not a nation of socialists, fascists, communists, statists, appeasers, cowards, racists. We are a nation that believes in the supremacy of the individual, self-sufficiency, limited government, free markets.

Like Guiliani, Brown is at a liberating point in his career. Both can raise questions and say what they think without concern for political correctness, and without the "timidity of politicians who claim to believe in American exceptionalism empower Obama and his followers when they fear to speak the truth because of political correctness."

On the other hand, there are politicians such as John McCain, who says he is ashamed of his country, and Rand Paul, who says we can't question the motivations of our president. Brown says Jeb Bush is another one who fears the media making him to look like a politically incorrect boob. Scott Walker cleverly said, "I don't know, ask Obama!"

Brown warns us that the day we can't question the motives of an elected official is the day America has been "fundamentally transformed."

Coming face to face with our enemy

What is the point of Lent? That's Ann Voskamp's topic today. Are you having trouble deciding what to give up for Lent? Or, have you just decided to give up Lent? What is Lent? Ann tells us:
It’s the preparing the heart for Easter. Like going with Jesus into the wilderness for forty days, that we might come face to ugly face with our enemy. Our sacrificing that we might become more like Christ in His sacrifice.”

...It is an irrefutable law: One needs to be dispossessed of all the possessions that possess us — before one can be possessed of God.

...I turn towards our Lenten wreath, this path we mark for 40 Days with a moving forward of a symbol of the cross, a moving forward of the candle.

Forty days, I am reflecting on my cross, my sins.

My lent has me hard after the light…

Looking hard for release from this messy body of death.

And there is Jesus.

Jesus with a crown of thorns. Jesus bent low, God carrying my rotting mess, Grace doing what I cannot do, and I cannot ascend to God but He will descend to me.

...A failing lent? It is a good Lent because this lament of our sin — is exactly what prepares us for Resurrection Joy found in our Savior.

Lent gives us this gift: the deeper we know the pit of our messiness & sin, the deeper we’ll drink from the draughts of His joy.

Grief is what cultivates the soil for the seeds of joy.
Go here to read Ann's thoughtful piece, and see the accompanying photos.

GOP power centers and their favorite candidates

Dick Morris is a political junkie, who is also very knowledgeable. Since I am also something of a political junkie, and one who is making an effort to become knowledgeable, I regularly read Morris and watch his videos. In today's video Morris talks about the three Republican power centers. The first is the Bush money machine, which Morris says is capable of raising upwards of a billion dollars. The second power center is the Koch brothers operation, which is a conglomeration of patriotic groups such as the Tea Party, which heavily influenced the GOP victories in 2010 and 2014. The third power center are the evangelicals.

Power center one: Jeb Bush. Power center two: Scott Walker seems to be emerging, although Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio might still capture this power center. Evangelicals: Mike Huckabee.
Go here to watch the Morris video.

Spoiler alert!

Andrew Klaven writes:
As much as I believe in capitalism as a method of economic development, a capitalist life is empty without spiritual content. Indeed, as much as I believe in individual freedom as the only worthwhile goal of any political system, individual freedom too is empty without spiritual content.

It is in that emptiness that militant Islam grows like the cancer it is.

Battered by the religious wars of the Reformation, making adjustments to a global economy and multi-cultured nations, the West has slowly become diffident in defense of its central faith. And there is some wisdom in that. Christianity is a religion, to paraphrase St. Paul, that frees us for freedom, and faith in Christ must be chosen freely to be fully realized. But to move from that position — which calls for intellectual rigor, unfettered debate and honest proselytism — to indiscriminate acceptance of all creeds as equally worthwhile is an error that does the world more harm than good.

Whenever I hear someone announce that “All religions are a path to God!” I wonder how it would work if you applied such “tolerance” to, say, medicine or science. “All medicines are a path to health! You take antibiotics, I cut the head off a chicken and dance under the full moon, really what’s the difference as long as we both believe it will make us well?” Or “All science is a path to progress! You invent an iPhone, I invent a weaponized disease, it’s all science, man, it’s all great!”

When you put it this way, it becomes clear that the idea that all religions are equally worthwhile is essentially an atheist creed. To say All religions are a path to God is really saying, No religion is a path to God. There is no God, so what difference does your religion make? When something is true, when it is factual, when it is real, it excludes other options. The world can’t be both flat and round. When you accept the roundness of it, you can no longer entertain its flatness. It’s one or the other.

If God is the Christian God of love, he is not the Allah of Isis.

The objection to this approach to religion — the generalization that says “religion” is responsible for the wars and atrocities committed in religion’s name — is absurd. People murder each other in the name of love, too, but that doesn’t mean love is murderous; it simply means there are wrong and right ways to love. There are wrong and right ways to worship too, and keeping silent about the right ways only lends credence to the wrong.

If there is a God — and, spoiler alert, there is — then like everything else that exists, there are things that are true about Him and things that are false. We who have voices better start telling the Truth without fear. Otherwise, our silence, and the emptiness that silence creates, will leave all the world to the likes of ISIS and their god — who is not God at all, by the way, but another fellow entirely.
Read more here.

Denial, deflection, and demonization

Charles Hoskinson writes in the Washington Examiner that Obama kept reform Muslims out of his recent summit on violent extremism. Hoskinson links to a story in the Daily Beast by Muslim journalists Asra Nomani and Hala Arafa in which they wrote:
we need to own up to our extremist theology instead of always reverting to a strategy of denial, deflection and demonization.

Hoskinson writes:
The refusal of Obama and his officials to name their real enemy is referred to among reformers as the "Voldemort effect," after the villain in the Harry Potter books whose name could not be mentioned.

Hoskinson quotes Maajid Nawaz, co-founder of the Quilliam Foundation, an anti-extremist British think-tank,
Nawaz told CNN on Wednesday that refusing to address the Islamist ideology directly puts all Muslims at risk of being blamed for the actions of a tiny minority — the exact opposite effect of what Obama intended by his approach.

..."Islam is a religion like any other with all the various sects and denominations. Islamism is a desire to impose Islam over society. And that is a very theocratic extremist desire. It can manifest itself violently. When it does, I call it jihadism. But it can also manifest itself politically. It's still a problematic ideology because any desire to impose anyone's faith over anyone else is inherently flawed and must be challenged," he said.

Another reform Muslim is Zuhdi Jasser, a doctor and former Navy officer who leads the American Islamic Foundation for Democracy. Jasser told the Washington Examiner in November:
"This is a Muslim problem that needs a Muslim solution."

Hoskinson writes:
many so-called mainstream Muslim groups that Jasser has criticized have documented extremist ties. Sympathies with the Muslim Brotherhood, an Egypt-based Islamist movement, landed two U.S. groups, the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the Muslim American Society, on the list of terrorist organizations banned by the United Arab Emirates.

Though both groups vigorously deny extremist sympathies or ties, there is ample evidence that CAIR was founded by supporters of Hamas, the Brotherhood's Palestinian branch and a banned terrorist organization in the United States, and that the Muslim American Society is the Brotherhood's U.S. branch.
Read more here.

Outlining what you believe and explaining why

Did you know that tomorrow is the annual Ruckusmaker day? Seth Godin explains:

About to be celebrated all over the world for the first time, tomorrow is annual Ruckusmaker Day.

Tomorrow would have been Steve Jobs' 60th birthday. Steve's contribution wasn't invention. Technology breakthroughs didn't came out of his workbench the way they did from Land or Tesla. Instead, his contribution was to have a point of view. To see something and say 'yes' or 'no'. To not only have a point of view, but to change it when the times demanded.

Most of all, to express that point of view, to act on it, to live with it.

There's a lot to admire about the common-sense advice, "If you don't have anything worth saying, don't say anything."

On the other hand, one reason we often find ourselves with nothing much to say is that we've already decided that it's safer and easier to say nothing.

If you've fallen into that trap, then committing to having a point of view and scheduling a time and place to say something is almost certainly going to improve your thinking, your attitude and your trajectory.

A daily blog is one way to achieve this. Not spouting an opinion or retweeting the click of the day. Instead, outlining what you believe and explaining why.

Commit to articulating your point of view on one relevant issue, one news story, one personnel issue. Every day. Online or off, doesn't matter. Share your taste and your perspective with someone who needs to hear it.

Speak up. Not just tomorrow, but every day.

A worthwhile habit.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Willing to pay the cost of competing

"It makes me feel normal and whole. It makes me happy. It's difficult to live with a disease where your own body is fighting against yourself. When I'm running I feel like I'm safe from myself."

She finished in first place...into her coach's arms. "I can look back and know that when I could, I gave it my all."

"True" Islam

Andrew McCarthy writes that it is
foolish for the Obama administration — as it was for the Bush and Clinton administrations, and as it is for Republican as well as Democratic leaders in Washington — to become enmeshed in the futile effort to define the “true” Islam. There probably is not one. Even though the scriptures are troublesome and unvarying, the practice of Islam — the interpretation of and degree of adherence to those scriptures — varies widely around the world.

But whether the Islam of the jihadists is “true” or “false” is irrelevant to us. What matters about sharia supremacism is that many millions of Muslims believe in it. It is a mainstream interpretation of Islam that has undeniable scriptural roots and inevitably breeds violent jihadists.

We must protect the United States regardless of whether they are right and regardless of how Islam’s internal strife is resolved – if it ever is.
Read more here.

The latest science on cholesterol in your diet


(Photo by Deb Lindsey/For The Washington Post)
Your genes, and how much saturated fat you eat: that's what causes the cholesterol content in your blood. Not how much food you eat that is high in cholesterol. Read more here.

A world of horrors

In his post entitled "Living History," Mark Steyn writes:
We are moving into a world of horrors beyond analogy.

...Like Lebanon, Nigeria got worse, and it's getting worser. That's true of a lot of places. In the Middle East, once functioning states - whether dictatorial or reasonably benign - are imploding. In Yemen, the US has just abandoned its third embassy in the region. According to the President of Tunisia, one third of the population of Libya has fled to Tunisia. That's two million people. According to the UN, just shy of four million Syrians have fled to Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon and beyond. In Iraq, Christians and other minorities are forming militias because they don't have anywhere to flee (Syria? Saudia Arabia?) and their menfolk are facing extermination and their women gang-rapes and slavery.

...These people "could stand to read" a little history, too. But they don't have time to read history because they're too busy living it: the disintegration of post-World War Two Libya; the erasure of the Anglo-French Arabian carve-up; the extinction of some of the oldest Christian communities on earth; the metastasizing of a new, very 21st-century evil combining some of the oldest barbarisms with a cutting-edge social-media search-engine optimization strategy.

...Much of the world thinks it's beyond all that stuff. Ukraine has a border with the European Union, and many of its citizens assumed that their future lay westward - eventual EU membership, and a Ukrainian flag at tedious Euro-summits listening to Brussels commissioners discoursing on beefed-up regulations on the curvature of cucumbers. Now in southern and eastern Ukraine a little short of a million people have fled. Like the Libyans and Syrians, they have reached that moment when you leave behind everything in your life except what's necessary for the journey and a couple of treasured photographs.

...And in the halls of power the "leader of the free world" gives exclusive interviews to favored nuancy boys in which they can backslap each other about the sophisticated rationale behind their inertia. Boko Haram hate books, so it probably wouldn't help to carpet-bomb them with the latest Fareed Zakaria opus. The Islamic State is destroying musical instruments, so parachuting in James Taylor is unlikely to work - because, although his cheery rendition of "You've Got A Friend" can light up a room, in Ramadi the room would light up him. So the global hyperpower has been reduced to convening a symposium on whether they need to open up more community-college scholarships at the new Center for Outstanding Achievement in Analogies of Extremism.
Read more here.

Lies beget lies

Mark Steyn has written a brilliant post about the Islamic State and the Obama administration. It is entitled, "Who Ya Gonna Believe? Us, or Your own Severed Head?"
the Administration's lies about the perpetrators necessitate lies about their victims:
(Since we can't call them Islamists, we can't call their victims Christians; they were merely "Egyptian citizens.") Read more here.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Elites, amnesty, illegal immigration, and hypocrisy

Why do we have lax enforcement of federal immigration law? Victor Davis Hanson knows:
The driving forces behind three decades of de facto non-enforcement of federal immigration law were largely the interests of elites across the political spectrum.

Employers in agriculture, construction, the hospitality industry, landscaping, and food processing wanted access to cheap, industrious foreign national laborers. So do the well-off households of the American Southwest, whose current aristocratic reliance on immigrant nannies, housekeepers, gardeners, and handymen rivals something out of Downton Abbey. Such facts were why Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers were known once to have patrolled the border to keep out illegal aliens and thus not depress wages of American workers and thereby ruin their own efforts at unionization. Large employers like open borders; entry-level and poor American workers obviously do not.

Identity politics elites are the other advocates of open borders.

...There are other mythologies about illegal immigration. Many who favor open borders are either helped economically by the influxes or avoid in the concrete the ramifications of their own ideology. A community like Silicon Valley is emblematic of the hypocrisy: the louder wealthy elites call for border relaxation and amnesties, the more likely they are to yank their children out of public schools that border the Redwood City or San Jose areas, which are struggling with second-language students, gangs, and the usual problems of adjustment arising from hundreds of thousands migrating from an impoverished central Mexico to barrios bordering an affluent Menlo Park or Palo Alto. California’s expenditures on infrastructure as a percentage of its yearly budget have dived, as medical, law enforcement, legal, educational, and social welfare expenses have soared—a phenomenon that falls largely on the middle classes through higher state taxes and reduced services.

...Illegal immigration, embraced by liberals and many affluent conservatives, is illiberal to the core. Take away the ethnic, economical, and political self-interests of our elites, and illegal immigration is mostly about ethnic chauvinism (La Raza is a fossilized racial rubric first given currency by Francisco Franco in fascist Spain), the exploitation of cheap labor, higher taxation on the middle class to pay for the social costs of labor for the well off, and a callous indifference shown the unemployed and low-wage American worker. The solution is to close the border, enforce existing laws, remove immigration policy from the political arena, and adopt a generous, legal immigration protocol that in ethnically blind fashion evaluates all potential immigrants on meritocratic criteria such as education and work skills.

A beautiful family



Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Honey on tap directly from your beehive



Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Don't ever give up, moms!



Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Does your cat use your dog as a pillow?

Bored Panda has a post here on cats who use dogs as pillows.


Thanks to Ann Voskamp

There are days like this



Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Squirrels want to have fun, too

Russian photographer Vadim Trunov captured some great squirrel photos, and Bored Panda posted some here.


Thanks to Ann Voskamp.

Honesty and a sense of humor

I like the fact that the Visitors Bureau in Ithaca, New York has a sense of humor.


Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Unlikely friendships

Dovas writes at Bored Panda about unlikely animal friends, such as Ingo the shepherd dog and Poldi the little owl. Photographer Tanja Brandt did some photoshoots with the friends.


More photos here.

Matterhorn camping

That's the thing about camping. You never know who is going to come for a visit.

Photo by Karol Nienartowicz found here.

Later that night...


Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Drama entanglement

Chateau Heartiste today takes a look at women who have been traumatized:
I’ve seen it myself, and I’ve experienced it: The lashing out of the hurt woman against those trying to comfort her. The proper response to the hurt woman is a nod of sympathy and a studied avoidance of getting entangled in her drama other than giving her time to cry it out, (and giving yourself a little distance from her bared claws).

Why is it not uncommon for traumatized women to push away their supportive lovers? It’s a mystery, but my theory is that it has to do with the natural revulsion men and women feel for sex role inversions. The caretaker and the nurturer is the woman; when a man eagerly tries to assume this role, it’s disturbing to women on a primal level. It’s similar to the aggressive career woman barging into a meeting ready to close a big deal. Men may admire her gumption in the abstract, but as a character trait it’s very off-putting to behold in a woman.

Another, related, possibility is the idea that a supportive man, in his readiness to “be there” for a hurt woman, inadvertently “betatizes” himself. He may be perceived less as a shoulder to lean on than as a cloying handmanlet who in his zeal to be helpful winds up reminding the woman of the source of her pain.

Traumatized men do this too, but it seems more common with women. Or perhaps, when it concerns women, it’s more shocking to men who witness it, given the pedestal-contoured presumptions that men hold of women’s receptivity to assistance in times of need.

Maybe there’s a reason why in large parts of the world women who are rape victims are considered sexual persona non grata. Could it be that, underneath the religious or moral justifications, men shun traumatized women because they know, instinctively, that those women will never be “right” as relationship material?
Read more here.

We all know about teenage boys, but have you noticed the girls?

"Cannabis-induced psychosis"

An ex-Marine charged with shooting "American Sniper" author Chris Kyle and another man was not legally insane, a prosecution expert said, suggesting the man may have gotten some of his ideas from the television show "Seinfeld."

Prosecutors called rebuttal witnesses Friday in the trial of Eddie Ray Routh, who is charged with killing Kyle and his friend Chad Littlefield. Routh's attorneys, who are pursuing an insanity defense, rested their case Thursday.

Dr. Randall Price, a forensic psychologist, testified Friday that Routh had a paranoid disorder made worse by his use of alcohol and marijuana, calling his condition "cannabis-induced psychosis."

Interest in the trial has been driven by the Oscar-nominated film based on Kyle's life. The movie ends with a depiction of Kyle meeting Routh, who he was taking to a gun range after Routh's mother asked Kyle to help her troubled son.
Read more here.

What's there to love?

Since the big focus this weekend seems to be on Rudy Guiliani's comments questioning Obama's love for America, Kevin Williamson suggests:
Put it this way: Why would anybody who sees the world the way Barack Obama does love America? For the progressive, there is very little to love about the United States. Washington, Jefferson, Madison? A bunch of rotten slaveholders, hypocrites, and cowards even when their hearts were in the right places. The Declaration of Independence? A manifesto for the propertied classes. The Constitution? An artifact of sexism and white supremacy. The sacrifices in the great wars of the 20th century? Feeding the poor and the disenfranchised into the meat-grinder of imperialism. The gifts of Carnegie, Rockefeller, Vanderbilt, Morgan, Astor? Blood money from self-aggrandizing robber barons.

...When as a candidate he was in trouble because of his association with the racist lunacy of the Reverend Wright, he responded by giving the American public at large a lecture on racism and its culpability therein, while his minions began proclaiming that the only reason to oppose this politician with the racist associates was — presto-change-o! — racism. But if you believe that the system is basically rotten, that the society that produced that system is basically rotten, that the game is rigged, that your opponents are all phonies and hypocrites, then what’s a little intellectual dishonesty in the service of the common good?

There is very little that a man with Barack Obama’s views and proclivities should love about the country, beyond the fact that its people are so vulnerable to insipid sentimentality that they twice elected him president.
Read more here.

Jobs for Jihadis

Jimmy Sengenberger is a Denver radio talk show host on KNUS. Tonight he did a hilarious interview with a man who represented himself as the newly appointed Czar of Violent Extremism. They discussed Jobs for Jihadis, how to properly submit, and Cash for Camels, among other concepts. It was hilarious in the Rush Limbaugh/Paul Shanklin tradition. I will post the interview here when it is available online.
Update: Here is the link which will enable you to listen to the entire hilarious interview:

1st Corinthians 4-7

Are you having trouble as a parent loving your child the way you want to? The Bible offers these thoughts:
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
"Easier said than done," you say? Yes, but Whom do we worship? Did He show us the Way? We can get there, on our knees.

Is America a safer place?

David Goldman (Spengler) views Barack Obama similarly to the way Rudy Guiliani does. Before Barack Obama was elected in 2008, Goldman tried to warn us:
Obama is a Third World anthropologist studying us who has cleverly infiltrated our culture. He is deeply and fiercely hostile to the American proposition.

...anthropologists, the curators of soon-to-be extinct cultures; anthropologists who really identify with their subjects marry them. Obama’s mother, the University of Hawaii anthropologist Ann Dunham, did so twice.

...Radical anti-Americanism, rather than Islam, was the reigning faith in the Dunham household.

...It is conceivable that Barack Obama, if elected, will destroy himself before he destroys the country. Hatred is a toxic diet even for someone with as strong a stomach as Obama. As he recalled in his 1995 autobiography, Dreams From My Father, Obama idealized the Kenyan economist who had married and dumped his mother, and was saddened to learn that Barack Hussein Obama, Sr, was a sullen, drunken polygamist. The elder Obama became a senior official of the government of Kenya after earning a PhD at Harvard. He was an abusive drunk and philanderer whose temper soured his career.

The senior Obama died in a 1982 car crash. Kenyan government officials in those days normally spent their nights drinking themselves stupid at the Pan-Afrique Hotel. Two or three of them would be found with their Mercedes wrapped around a palm tree every morning. During the 1970s I came to know a number of them, mostly British-educated hollow men dying inside of their own hypocrisy and corruption.

Both Obama and the American public should be very careful of what they wish for. As the horrible example of Obama’s father shows, there is nothing worse for an embittered outsider manipulating the system from within than to achieve his goals - and nothing can be more terrible for the system. Even those who despise America for its blunders of the past few years should ask themselves whether the world will be a safer place if America retreats into a self-pitying shell.
Read more here.

Are you happy now?

Do you get upset by airport security? This man in Russia did.
New York News

Drugs can make you stupid

WCHS in Charleston posted this video of a young man robbing a pharmacy at gunpoint. The pharmacist had a concealed weapon permit. It did not turn out well for the would-be-robber.

Injured by a drug conspiracy

Anica Padilla writes for ABC7 in Denver:
Colorado is already being sued by two neighboring states for legalizing marijuana. Now the state faces an additional federal lawsuit from some of its own citizens.

The lawsuit being sponsored by a group called the Safe Streets Alliance (SSA) argues Colorado is violating federal laws prohibiting the production, sale, and possession of marijuana.

"Because state and local government actions that promote the marijuana industry directly conflict with the federal Controlled Substances Act ("CSA"), those actions are preempted under the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution and must be set aside," the lawsuit states.

Phillis Windy Hope Reilly and Michael P. Reilly are cited as co-plaintiffs.

"The Reillys are Colorado property owners who have been injured by a conspiracy to cultivate recreational marijuana near their land," the lawsuit states.

"Marijuana businesses make bad neighbors. They emit pungent, foul odors, attract undesirable visitors, increase criminal activity, increase traffic, and drive down property values," the lawsuit claims.

The plaintiffs are appealing to federal courts to try to shut down Colorado's $800-million-a-year marijuana industry.

"After five years of federal non-enforcement, the inevitable result has been easy youth access to marijuana, the deterioration of neighborhoods where the marijuana industry openly operates, and the rise of the drug culture everywhere," SSA states.

Colorado is also being sued by Nebraska and Oklahoma for legalizing marijuana in 2012. In that case, Colorado has until March 27 to tell the U.S. Supreme Court why it thinks Nebraska and Oklahoma are wrong.

“Throw them up against the wall and frisk them.”

Chuck Ross reports:
Former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg has successfully blocked video from a controversial talk he gave at the Aspen Institute last week from being posted online.

At the Institute’s Feb. 5 event, the pro-gun control multi-billionaire suggested keeping guns out of the hands of young, male minorities.

Ninety-five percent of murders are attributed to the group, said Bloomberg, who has spend tens of millions of dollars on various gun control initiatives, including the group Everytown for Gun Safety.

“These kids think they’re going to get killed anyway because all their friends are getting killed,” Bloomberg said at the summit. “They just don’t have any long-term focus or anything. It’s a joke to have a gun. It’s a joke to pull a trigger.”

Various national media outlets jumped on the pointed comments, for both the pro-gun control sentiment and the racial aspect.

...During his talk, Bloomberg also discussed “stop-and-frisk,” a policing practice he advocated and expanded during his mayoral tenure. He said that one way to deal with the issue of gun proliferation among young, minority males is to “throw them up against the wall and frisk them.”
Read more here.

Cars and buses much safer than light rail

Did you know that light rail is two and one-half more dangerous than cars?
Read the statistics here.

Thanks to Complete Colorado

Can somebody turn the heat on?


Matt Dempsey tweeted: "It appears to be too cold for the fossil fuel divestment protest at the University of Colorado."

Thanks to Complete Colorado.

Another reason mass media is going away

Seth Godin writes:

We invented televisions so marketers would have a way to run TV ads. We have magazines so marketers can run magazine ads.

Make no mistake: mass media exists because it permits mass marketers to do their job.

Mass production, the ability to make things cheaply, in volume, demanded that we invent mass marketing--it was the only way to sell what was being made in the quantity it was produced.

The internet, though, was not invented so marketers could run internet ads.

And, at the same time, mass production is being replaced by micro production, by the short run, by customization, by the long tail.

Just in time, mass media is going away too.

Mass marketers don't like this and they often don't even see it. They're struggling to turn Snapchat and Twitter and other sites into substitutes for TV, but it's not working, because it's an astonishing waste of attention.

The Ed Sullivan Show existed to sell Jello to everyone. Today, there's no everyone, and certainly no media channel that can sell everyone, cheap, to the folks who market Jello.

This is an ongoing challenge for mass marketers, and the opportunity of a generation for everyone else.

For fifty years, TV and TV-thinking was the shortcut. Make average stuff for average people (by definition = mass) and promote to every stranger within reach. It worked.

But mass is fading, fading faster than our desire to be mass marketers is fading. The shortcut doesn't work every time now, and the expectation that success is the same as popularity is still with us.

Fifty years ago, producers and marketers got smart. They saw the miracle of mass marketing and they adopted it as their own. They amped up mass production and bet on the masses.

The smart creators today are seeing the shift and doing precisely the opposite:

Produce for a micro market.

Market to a micro market.

When someone wants to know how big you can make (your audience, your market share, your volume), it might be worth pointing out that it's better to be important, to be in sync, to be the one that's hard to be replaced. And the only way to be important is to be relevant, focused and specific.