Tuesday, August 31

Obama's refusal to show "real" birth cert may yet end up in court

As some of you may have heard, Obama has steadfastly refused to release a "long-form birth certificate," which was and is created for every single person born in Hawaii.

A long-form certificate includes dozens of piece of authenticating information such as the hospital where the birth occurred, name of doctor, name of nurse, parents' names and similar. Similar detailed information is included on most state birth certificates.

"Wait," you're thinking. "I heard that Chris Matthews said that Obama had released his birth certificate! I can't imagine the MSM lying to us all, so this post I'm reading must be hateful propaganda!"

You've been suckered: Obama has never "released" anything. What happened was that his campaign called in a handful of Democratic bloggers and showed them a document that was purported to be a "Certificate of Live Birth." The bloggers took pictures of this paper, and digital images of this document were posted on the internet.

Those images are the only things that have been "released."

"But wait," you're thinking. "That means we have pictures of his birth certificate. Case closed."

Not at all. Hawaii is unique in that it has two different documents relating to births: One is named "Certification of Live Birth." That's the long-form BC noted above. The other is a "Certificate of Live Birth"--what the Obama campaign supposedly showed the Democratic supporters.

Easy to see how the two would be confused, eh? "Certificate" vs. "Certification."

Problem is, the latter doesn't contain any of the authenticating details that are listed on the long-form BC. Instead it merely says Joe Smith was born on [date] in [town].

Not only has Obama refused to release his long-form BC, he's spent several million dollars in legal fees to defeat moves to have that document released. Since money is so vital to winning elections, that's...curious to say the least.

Finally, the short-form document that was photographed by Democrat supporters and posted on the internet has never been examined by neutral experts. Seems most doubts could easily be put to rest if Obama offered to let the GOP bring in a couple of forensic experts and go over the alleged BC with a microscope.

But of course this hasn't been done, and likely won't be. And there has to be some reason.

All this is background for the current story: A senior Army officer--a Lieutenant Colonel and M.D.-- has refused an order to deploy for a year to Afghanistan, on the grounds that IF the president is not constitutionally eligible to hold that office, any orders he causes to be issued by the military chain of command he heads are unlawful.

This case is important because the handful of courts that have even allowed citizens to file suits to force Obama to prove his eligibility have quickly ruled that the filers don't have "standing" to sue.

In other words, even though the people filing suit were citizens and presumably had a huge legal interest in whether the president was legally qualified to hold that office, the courts said that bona fide American citizens weren't legally qualified to sue to force a thorough airing of that question.

Wow...as a citizen, you have no right to sue to have an explicit provision in the Constitution enforced! Bizarre.

But the case of LTC Lakin is different, because the president--as Commander in Chief of the armed forces--has the authority to order soldiers into combat. This is obviously a life-or-death matter, so it's hard to imagine any American who would be better said to have standing to file suit.

The other thing that's interesting here is that LTC Lakin is (understandably) being court-martialed for refusing to obey a direct and lawful order. So the matter of Obama's birthplace is being raised not as a de-novo issue but as a defense to the charges against the officer. Thus the court can't reasonably just ignore the question without taking away the guy's entire defense.

An added twist: Military courts are independent of all other courts except the Supreme Court, and military judges--unlike most civilian judges--are generally pretty no-nonsense guys. So it should be at least somewhat harder to get the military judge to simply drop the court-martial (although this has happened in other cases, so it's not out of the question).

Now, I don't have any reason to suspect that Obie wasn't born in Hawaii, as he claims. But it's clear that he's been fighting like mad to avoid releasing his long-form BC--the one with all the details.

There's a reason for that, and I'd like to know what it is.

Scam of the century

As everyone knows by now, "anthropogenic global warming" (AGW) is the theory that humans are responsible for GW. This has given rise to some amazing scams.

Now there's a scam so big that even environmentalists are calling it "the biggest environmental scandal in history."

It's so bad that even the UN and the EU have finally said they're thinking of taking steps to stop it.

It's based on a provision in the Kyoto "protocol" that allows Chinese and Indian companies to keep producing a gas called HCF-22 (used in refrigerators). The Kyoto accord prohibits Western countries from producing the gas.

A byproduct of this production is another gas, HCF-23, that's supposedly 11,000 times more "potent" as a greenhouse gas than the uber-scary CO2.

The scam is that the exact same firms that make both gases--again, an action explicitly permitted by Kyoto--then turn around and offer to destroy the HCF-23... provided a western company or government will pay them a huge amount of money to do so.

Destroying the offending gas generates a "credit", which can then be sold. Companies in the developed world that can't meet the emission targets their governments committed them to--or can't meet them without a huge cost--can buy these credits, allowing them to continue emitting the same amount of greenhouse gases as always, or can be used to ostensibly show that the company's net emissions--including the purchased credits--are falling.

The market for these credits is operated by well-rewarded brokers--most of whom appear to be (surprise!) extremely well connected to various heads of state.

So to summarize: The Kyoto accord gave Chinese and Indian firms an exclusive right to make a gas, using a process that also produces a useless and arguably harmful gas as a byproduct. The Chinese and Indian companies then get paid handsomely--by western companies--to destroy the latter gas.

And Kyoto explicitly permits this scam to run until 2030.

This whole thing is almost surreal, but the most amazing thing is: Most government scientists and economists consider this scheme to be the absolute pinnacle of brilliance and innovation, and they actually regard it a "free-market" solution.

You couldn't make up stuff like this.

Monday, August 30

Texans aren't shy about saying what they think

Weasel Zippers is one of my favorite reads, and if you're conservative you should take a look.

Got a laugh over this pic they ran of a car spotted in--naturally--Texas:

The Obama/Democrat playbook?

A commenter at Belmont Club thinks Obama (with the full support of Reid, Pelosi and virtually all Democratic congresscritters) is following these steps:

1. Pass laws that commit the federal govt to vast new, never-ending programs.
2. These programs will create enormous deficits--the great bulk of which don't kick in for 3 years.
3. Propose to cut these massive deficits by raising taxes on businesses and "the rich"....
4. ...and by cutting the military budget--which reduces our ability to react to crises.
5. Insult traditional U.S. allies and kowtow to adversaries.
6. Either use the courts to re-interpret the Constitution ("living document") or simply ignore it.
7. Weaken the dollar so much that it loses its position as the world's "reserve currency."
8. Order the Justice Department to selectively enforce laws--particularly on immigration and voting rights--which strengthens the Democratic vote.
9. Steal elections.
10. Result: America loses its exceptionalism and becomes a second-rate country.

Interesting.

Atheists: "Why do so many Americans believe in God?"

In reading through dozens of published accounts of last Saturday's "Restoring Honor" rally on the Washington DC mall, I'm struck by how many of the critics admitted being atheists.

And it won't surprise you to learn that every one of 'em (so far) professed to being baffled and generally contemptuous of the very large gathering of "ordinary folks."

It doesn't take long for this self-styled "elite" to start rationalizing this observation.
Atheist:
"I am brilliant and well-educated, and I don't believe in God. Nor do any of my equally smart friends. On the other hand, a bunch of people who never went to college (or attended a non-Ivy-league school, which is almost as bad) do believe in God. Ergo, belief in God is proof of intellectual inferiority.

Oh, and racism, hostility, violent tendencies and a fondness for firearms."
From there it's a very short step to the obvious conclusion:
"Because those who believe in God are so woefully stupid, it would be a grave error to let them get anywhere near the levers of power. This is so important that if an election is close, it's reasonable to create a few hundred--or a few thousand--votes for our guy if it will get our candidate elected and deny the office to the stupid, superstitious side."
"Well of course great ends justify...um, innovative and progressive means. Why do you ask?"

This reinforces what those on the right have long known: Atheists are overwhelmingly likely to be leftists. And they're apparently horrified that so many on the right do believe in God.

Sunday, August 29

Should we tolerate the intolerant?

One of the pillars of a free society is tolerance for those who are 'different.' But what happens when a tolerant society--as ours most certainly is--runs into a culture whose official, stated goal is to either force everyone to convert everyone to their religion or else kill them?

In other words, what happens when a tolerant society meets extremely intolerant people?

A few philosophers concluded that this encounter could have only one outcome: if the tolerant culture stayed true to that principle--extending unlimited tolerance even to those who will not accept the slightest deviation from their doctrines--the former would be destroyed.

The only way for the tolerant society to survive was by refusing to tolerate the intolerant group.

I'll admit this at first seems like one of those stupid paradoxes that sometimes plague highschool students--"If God is all powerful, can he make a weight so heavy that even He can't lift?" But unlike most paradoxes, this one is extremely serious. In fact the wrong decision will be fatal.

Literally.

Most Americans have been raised to believe tolerance is near the top of the list of vital characteristics of a free, civilized society. So they don't want to accept the idea that in this one case, our nation has to be intolerant to survive.

If you want our free, tolerant society to survive, we're going to have to overcome this reluctance.

Kennedy Center pinheads try to ban prayer there

You really need to click on this link and hear the guy explain what happened. Short version:

Talk-radio host Glenn Beck rented the Kennedy Center for a motivational rally. According to Beck, a day or two before the event the Center's managers told Beck's team something to the effect of, "Oh by the way: no praying in our facility."

Beck checked the lengthy contract they signed to rent the place, and as you probably guessed, it didn't say a word about prayer being forbidden in performances there. So Beck told them in essence, "Sorry, I must have missed that paragraph. Would you please show me where that's written?"
Pinheads: "Oh, well, it's not written."

Beck: "Yeah, that's pretty much what we thought. In that case not only will we open with a prayer, we'll also close with one. And we may well have a whole bunch of prayers in between."

Pinheads: [Silence. Steam coming out of ears.] "Okay, how about a compromise?"

Beck: "You just heard what we're gonna do. End of discussion."

If Beck's account (which I've paraphrased above) is essentially true, this is an outrage. Did the Center's managers really try to prevent Beck from praying in his program? And if so, was one of the managers really so outrageously brazen as to claim that this was actually the Center's official policy?

If true, can anyone doubt that this kind of thing (Dem officials inventing non-existent 'policies' to weaken conservative rallies or organizing) goes on all the damn time? I mean, if they'll try something like that with a wealthy, popular guy like Beck, do you think they'd be even more likely to invent roadblocks to screw with ordinary folks like you and me?

Gee, if we only had some folks who got paid to, y'know, actually go interview the principals here and find out who said what. And then they could print their results. Wow, what a concept!

Too bad nobody does that.

Finally, I'm struck by the similarities between the Center's managers fabricating a "policy" of no prayer, and efforts by all manner of similar bureaucratic pinheads to categorize any speech they personally dislike as "hate speech." Because any such determination is obviously subjective, the bureaucrat can draw the totally imaginary line virtually anywhere.

For example, special courts in Canada (yes, yes, I know) have "ruled" (!) that quoting certain Bible verses is "hate speech," for which the speaker can be sentenced to jail.

Beck stood up to the lying bastards and they backed down--probably because they belatedly realized the guy they were trying to bluff could afford to spend millions pursuing a lawsuit if they didn't. But on college campuses all manner of "ordinary people" are punished every week by administrators who have taken it on themselves to declare certain types of speech off-limits.

Remember in November.

Public school demands set-asides; public mystified

The school system in a tiny town (population 2000 or so) in Mississippi enacted a policy that some of the class-officer positions were reserved for black students. The positions thus reserved appear to rotate, and the intent seems to have been to ensure that some blacks were elected class officers.

It's not hard to see both sides of this, because in a town of 2000 people there probably aren't more than 30 kids in each grade, and if they voted by race, blacks would never win an election. And yes, that does seem unfair. After all, no one chooses their race, et cetera.

In any case, a firestorm followed, and within days the school board reversed the policy. End of story. Tempest in a teapot.

The hoot here is in the comments at the link: Seems a lot of folks were just astonished that the school could possibly have come up with this goofy, PC requirement that some offices had to be reserved for a member of a certain minority. Seemed kinda unAmerican.

But look at your federal government, and judicial decisions regarding elections: Ever hear of "gerrymandered districts"? These are bizarrely-shaped congressional districts that zigzag like snakes across a state, specifically to produce a district in which blacks are the majority.

And this isn't just a quirk of a few corrupt state legislatures. Instead, this policy has been approved by federal courts all the way up to the Supremes. Indeed, some federal courts have demanded that "minority-majority" districts be created.

Now, I can see why that could be considered a good idea. But in the long run it seems likely to encourage (and elect) more extreme candidates--both black and white--since they don't have to attract any votes from the opposite race.

Conversely, quality of leadership, ethics and personality comes across instantly, regardless of skin color. My sense of it is that today 90 percent of whites wouldn't have the slightest qualm about voting for a minority candidate who seemed most qualified to lead in an ethical manner.

Short answer: Don't blame the teachers in tiny Nettleton, Mississippi for doing what the federal judiciary has been doing for decades.

Saturday, August 28

What happens when governments run out of money?

What happens when the government mandates that hospitals provide "free" care for those who can't pay...and the hospitals run out of money? The Denver Post explains:
Two clinics at University of Colorado Hospital — considered the state's safety net for the needy — are turning away patients on government insurance plans because they can't afford to treat them.

University Hospital...spent almost $270 million in the last fiscal year treating people without insurance....
In 1990 the state legislature passed a law saying the state would reimburse the hospital $3 for every $4 the hospital spends on care for those who can't pay. (Or as the Post reporter phrased it, "needy patients.")

But as we've all seen, our new "changed" government routinely ignores laws when it wants to. In this case, the state's promise to reimburse is ignored by legislators wishing to honor higher priorities. Like giving public-employee-union workers raises, maybe? In any case, the state has not given University Hospital money from its general fund for at least the past three years.

Okay, if you're not from Colorado this story is "somebody else's problem." But is there any reason to think your state--or the federal government--will act any differently?

Unlike the feds, state governments can't just print money as they wish. (I know, I know, that's not technically what the federal gubmint does. But the effect is identical.) So if a state spends all its tax revenue but wants to spend more, it either has to borrow (California is the best-known example) or do as us poor citizen-peons do: Either increase income (i.e. raise taxes) or cut some other outlay.

There is no way around this.

Unfortunately, politicians never predict the real effects of the laws they pass, so they routinely pass laws that end up having costs they never anticipated.

And when those effects show up, the pols typically raise your taxes to cover.

Don't like that? Tough--because the pols know how to make you accept a tax increase: they threaten to cut funding for public schools.

Now, if that would be done by firing vastly-overpaid administrators (superintendents and non-teaching headquarters staffers/paper-pushers) that would be fine. But the cuts are always to actual teaching staff.

Works every time.

City councils invariably threaten to cut police and firemen. Again, it always works.

But at some level of taxation, revenues stop rising because former taxpayers start leaving the system. For example, people living in shelters or in their cars don't pay property taxes. As taxes rise on low-end rental property, at some point the owner/landlord finally decides it's too damn much trouble, stops making repairs, and eventually the property is bulldozed.

All of which means that eventually, cuts will have to be made somewhere.

Short answer: We need to force government--at all levels--back into its box. Meaning, don't let it control so much, pass so many programs and mandates, etc. On the federal level, it may be necessary to amend the Constitution to clarify that the Feds are not allowed to spend money on aid to schools or welfare. Let those programs go back to the states, as the founders explicitly stated.

MSM low-balls crowd estimates at conservative rally

Radio talk-show host Glen Beck hosted a rally in DC to benefit the Special Operations Warrior Fund. Here are some pics:


Here's one from farther back, apparently shot from the top of the Washington Monument:



Finally, here's one looking back toward the WW2 memorial and the Wash. monument. As you can see, some people were clear back on the slope leading up to the monument, east of the WW2 memorial. (It's almost a mile from the Lincoln memorial to the monument.)


Now here's your task: Look carefully at the 3 pics above. How many people do you think were present?

Now, what do you think the professional editors at CBS News--with their vaunted "layers upon layers of fact-checkers"--estimated?

87,000.

You probably think I'm just kidding, because that's such a ludicrously low estimate that no self-respecting outfit would publish such an obvious piece of propaganda.

Okay, you got me. I have a lot of contempt for the MSM, so I don't blame you for being skeptical. So click on the link above to find out what they really said.


Back already? Pretty amazing when you see pics like this with your own eyes (and they're not fakes or photoshopped), and then see something on the CBS website that so...craptacularly violates the truth.

Kinda makes ya wonder how they can think they can get away with lying so blatantly. Oh, wait, that's it: Before about eight years ago they knew only a handful of people in the world could catch them in the lie--and since those people didn't own television networks or newspapers, CBS and cronies just sort of said "Screw 'em--we'll say whatever we want!"

Once you get infected with that particular disease, it takes more than a few years to lose the bad habit.

And finally it occurs to ya to wonder (usually about 3a.m.): If the MSM lies so brazenly about something so relatively trivial, do you suppose they'd lie equally brazenly to achieve an objective that was really important to the Left?

Naaah, if something was really critical--like the actual estimated cost of national health care, or what the "Card Check" bill will actually do--I'm sure they'd tell you the truth.

Oh, absolutely.

It's official: Obama team ending deportation of most illegals

Last Tuesday I wrote about a story in the Houston Chron that the Obama administration seemed to be dismissing all deportation cases if the defendant wasn't a felon.

When the Chronicle story ran, this conclusion was based on observations of several Houston immigration attorneys, who were stunned (and of course pleased) to find their clients' cases had been dismissed. But now a memo has surfaced making it official. From the NY times:
A shake-up in immigration policy may lead to deportation proceedings being dropped for thousands of aliens who entered the United States illegally...officials said on Friday. ...
The policy shift emerged from an internal memorandum ICE Assistant Secretary John Morton sent...to the agency's...director of enforcement and removal operations.

The memo was...confirmed to Reuters by officials.


Couple of points here. First, the fact that government officials finally confirmed on Friday--to the self-appointed gods of the journalism world (that would be the NYTimes) something that local journalists in Houston deduced on Tuesday, should prove yet again (as if you needed more proof) that this administration will start a policy they know most Americans will oppose, and then finally get around to telling us later--typically after they've been caught doing it!

Second: The MFM constantly tries to portray the Internet as a place populated by the tinfoil-hat crowd. They do this in the hope that consumers of news will keep buying their woefully, fatally lefty-biased crap instead of getting on the Net and finding things for themselves.

But the Net is like having 30 million sets of eyes and ears in every office in the country. It's virtually impossible for something to happen that's not known by someone who posts on the Net. And the fact is, virtually every significant news story your paper carries, or that you see on TV, was on the Net two or three days ago.

I mention this because there's a move afoot in Washington to let the government "regulate" what's posted on the Net. Of course that's not what the bill is *called*, but that's what it will do.

If it passes, soon the Net will run only what the government minders want it to run.

Just FYI.

How much tolerance should we have for offensive practices?

In view of the controversy over the Ground-Zero mosque, the gifted Vanderleun was trying to define or identify a standard by which the West could coexist with Islam. He noted that people could tolerate something without having to agree with it, which led to the "live and let live" principle.

That's a good idea, and I think things will usually work best if everyone follows "live and let live." However...

Some belief systems are *so* antithetical to ours that we may not even be willing to tolerate. Polygamy, for example--I'm not sure that any level of government has a sound legal basis for outlawing it, but if having only one spouse is the law of the land, how do we respond when Achmed enters the country with 4 wives?

If they're just visiting, tolerating might be viable. But how about if they stay and want to become citizens? Tolerance is wonderful, but if applied in this case it creates a new class of citizens who get the benefit of special rules.

Same problem applies if some sect pops up which has no problem with an adult marrying a 10-yr-old: tolerating this will create a new class of citizens with special rights.

Of course this doesn't mean we *can't* choose this path, but are you sure you *want* to?

We've already seen the nose of this particular camel in our tent: A New Jersey woman accused her Muslim husband of raping her. His attorney countered that such a thing wasn't a crime in his culture, so he shouldn't be held accountable for our crazy laws.

Judge bought it and the guy got off free.

So while "live and let live" is a wonderful principle, making that the standard will eventually bump up against a case that you won't be able to tolerate with a clear conscience.

Why not a different standard: Americans are a very tolerant people, but if you absolutely insist on the right to stone adulterers or flog women who appear in public without a male family member...well, it's a really big world so we trust you'll find a spot more attuned to your tastes--because you're not gonna stay here.

Obama regime cancels trial of USS Cole "coordinator"

According to the Dems and Leftists the way to deal with "terrorism" (assuming they even acknowledge there is such a thing) isn't by armed force but through the courts--i.e. by treating acts of terror like ordinary crimes.

Now the Obama administration shows it's unwilling even to do that.
The Obama administration has apparently decided not to prosecute Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, the alleged coordinator of the bombing of the USS Cole in Oct. 2000, according to a motion filed this week in a U.S. court.

The motion said "no charges are either pending or contemplated with respect to" Mr. al-Nashiri.

In case you've lost track amid all the murders committed by Muslim fanatics, 17 American sailors were killed in the bombing of the U.S. Navy ship as it lay at anchor in a harbor.

Now, it's true that prosecutors drop cases if they discover exculpatory evidence, or find that evidence pointing to guilt can't be legally used. Is it possible this is the reason?

Nope. Military officials said prosecutors have been ready to go to trial for months.

"It's politics at this point," said a military official who spoke on the condition of anonymity. He said he thinks the administration simply doesn't want to proceed.

I'd think the public deserves to know the reason the adminstration doesn't want to proceed. And if no one in the Obama administration would talk, I'd suggest hitting every one of 'em with contempt sentences until one finally saw the light.


Lord, please give conservatives a whopping majority in at least the House in November. And then please let a few dozen of the freshmen reps have the stones to investigate and impeach if the evidence warrants.

Friday, August 27

MSM double-standard strikes again

You may have heard that members of a small church in Florida are planning to burn copies of the Koran on the ninth anniversary of the 9/11 attack on the U.S. by Muslim fanatics.

In response, yesterday about 100 Muslims demonstrated outside the US embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, and threatened “jihad” or holy war if the Florida group proceeds.

A spokesman for the protesters said burning the Koran would unleash "uncontrollable rage from Muslims around the world."

Okay...let's see if I've got this right: When fanatical Muslims hijacked airliners and crashed them into two skyscrapers in New York, the Left said we should...be tolerant and not strike back. And now nine years later, Muslims want to build a mosque on a site where part of one of the hijacked planes hit, and the Left says we should...be tolerant and let them go ahead.

And now when some people want to burn copies of the Koran--the Muslim response is: "If they do, we will unleash war."

Gee, looks like demands for "tolerance" are only made to one side, while the other side trumpets its intolerance and the politicians and "journalists" around the world grin stupidly.

But of course, this is a "dog bites man" story, because everyone knew Muslims would have this response.

What makes the latest report worth noting is that not a single MSM story will note the double standard.

Remember the dustup about two years ago when a Danish paper that asked cartoonists to draw cartoon depictions of Mohammed? Muslim in several nations rioted in protest. When U.S. papers ran stories about this, you'd think they'd have re-published at least one or two of the allegedly "offensive" cartoons, so readers would know what all the rioting was about.

Know how many U.S. papers published even one of the cartoon depictions? One.

Because they're all scared to death of offending Muslims.

Surprise! Folks at major networks contribute 7 times more cash to Dems

From the Washington Examiner:

Senior executives, on-air personalities, producers, reporters, editor, writers and other self-identifying employees of ABC, CBS and NBC contributed more than $1 million to Democratic candidates and campaign committees in 2008.

The Democratic total of $1,020,816 was given by 1,160 employees of the three major broadcast television networks, with an average contribution of $880.

By contrast, only 193 of the employees contributed to Republican candidates and campaign committees, for a total of $142,863.
So in the MFM, donors to Dems outnumber those to Repubs by just under six to one. And the amounts donated are 7:1 in favor of Dems.

Geez, the only surprise here is that the bias wasn't even worse.

Rat. Fucking. Bastards.

Why do pols never have to answer for their awful errors?

In the private sector-- at least at the rank-and-file level-- if you make a really bad decision you'll usually be fired. And if you do something illegal, like taking a bribe, you can be prosecuted and jailed.

But as one rises to the highest ranks, some sort of transformation occurs: For those who reach this "charmed" class, the rules change dramatically. Now if you make a decision that burns half a billion bucks or so, you'll still get eased out--but usually with a so-called "golden parachute" worth tens of millions.

Nice work if you can get it. And folks on both the Left and Right understandably get pretty irate over this kind of unfairness.

But now let's look at the public sector--politicians and bureaucrats. Maybe this is just my selective memory, but seems to me that politicians are never called to account for bad decisions. If by some bizarre quirk some reporter gets close enough--with a videocamera rolling--to ask the guy why his favorite project went to shit, the guy always tap-dances away without giving a straight answer.

You never can get any of these rat-bastards on the witness stand and force them to answer direct questions. I mean, imagine if you could get Barney Frank on the stand; you show the courtroom the video of him saying, "Oh, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are absolutely sound--no problems at all!" And then you say, "Congressman, how do you explain your making the absolutely bullshit, totally crap, wretchedly wrong statement we just saw? Are you f'n stupid, or are you merely corrupt?"

Some attorney out there put me some knowledge: Are you sure it's illegal to kill these guys?

Is the government trying to commit suicide?

Saw a phrase that seemed to capture the performance of the U.S. government and the nation's self-styled "elite" opinion-shapers better than any other: "Suicide by stupidity."

Yep.

Example: Mexican drug gangs killing tens of thousands, mostly on the Mexican side of the border but also in the U.S. border towns. Obvious solution: Short sweeps into Mexico by U.S. mechanized forces, including air. Let 'em know that anyone carrying a weapon will be killed, and then do it.

Actual response by Obama and congressional Democrats: "The border is safer now than at any time in the last several decades."

Example: Gov't guaranteeing mortgage loans to people who otherwise wouldn't have qualified. Everyone feigns shock and surprise when huge numbers of these borrowers default. Obvious solution: Stop doing that, and prosecute the executives of F&F (all Dem appointees) who cooked the books to pocket huge bonuses.

Actual response by Obama and congressional Dems: No significant action.

Example: U.S. imports too much foreign oil. Obvious solution: Open up offshore drilling, and drilling in Alaska.

Actual response by Obama and congressional Dems: Declare a "moratorium" on new drilling in the Gulf (one of the most energy-rich areas). When that's overturned in court, simply instruct federal permitting agencies to delay issuing drilling permits on leases that only have a limited life before they're lost.

There are literally scores of similar examples.

Suicide by stupidity indeed.

ABC covers for the Dems yet again

ABC "News" has been in the tank for the Democratic party for decades. Still, the brief piece I heard on their top-of-the-hour radio broadcast at ten a.m. yesterday was so amazingly slanted that I was speechless.

The newsreader said that according to just-released figures, the number of new unemployment claims was "down sharply" compared to the previous week. They threw in a couple more sentences of blather, and that was it.

I was struck by the fact that the piece didn't include a single actual number.

I mean, if you're doing a piece all about "just-released figures", wouldn't you think the actual figure would have some tiny relevance?

It turns out, of course, that "down sharply" is by comparison to a huge number from the prior week. Here's what the government's press release said:
In the week ending Aug. 21, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 473,000, a decrease of 31,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 504,000.

The 4-week moving average was 486,750, an increase of 3,250 from the previous week's revised average of 483,500.
Of course ABC doesn't want you to hear the actual numbers--probably because you're not sophisticated enough to understand 'em so you'd get scared and wouldn't buy as many CD's next week.

ABC "News"--"We report, we decide."

The lessons taught by "failed nations"

We've all heard (often) that those who cannot learn from the lessons of history are condemned to repeat it.

Unfortunately, the public school system doesn't spend much time teaching history today--and even less teaching "real" history as opposed to "revised Leftist PC-approved history," so that doesn't help much.

So I thought it might be instructive to take a glance around the globe and see how governments were working today, and how their societies were faring as a result.

The first thing we notice is that there are a large number of countries –Venezuela, Mexico, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Somalia, Yugoslavia, Lebanon, Sudan, most of central Africa--where the main function of politicians seems to be stealing as much as they can. Laws are selectively enforced, and often used to wring money from the middle and lower classes. Bribes are an everyday commonplace. Gangs of government-backed thugs intimidate anyone who has the courage to oppose the Top Thug.

Violence is so pervasive that it scarcely elicits a shrug. In Venezuela there have been so many murders this year that dictator Hugo Chavez has ordered the local media to stop reporting them. In Mexico the drug gangs are beheading folks and hanging the bodies from bridges to ensure everyone gets the message.

Then it finally dawns on you that there is very little difference between these nations and...Chicago. The government corruption, violence and selective law enforcement are very similar.

Consider the city manager and council in Bell, California, who had managed to enact a $700,000 per year salary package for the former--in a town of 30,000 poor residents. How is that any different from anything found in the worst the third world country?

And how can you (we) fix it? Too often it seems that rich, corrupt pols have enough money and influence to find a corrupt judge. Hard to know whether the resulting acquittal or trivial hand-slap is due to a six-figure bribe, blackmail or just soft-on-crime leftist judges.

Seems like all we can (legally) do is try to vote the worst offenders out of office. Of course that's hardly much punishment after they've stolen millions, but at least it's a start.

You are not alone

Do you feel the world is edging closer to some sort of meltdown or explosion? Think our nation has been taken over by literally crazy socialist sociopaths--people who wouldn't know how to sharpen a pencil if you took away their electric pencil sharpeners?

Well, you're not alone--a lot of folks are getting that vibe.

I sit here in a lovely home, drinking coffee and petting the Jack Russell terrier curled up in my lap, and I hope with every fiber of my being that life here in the U.S. isn't about to get worse.

But the very next thought is: Whatever happens, we'll get through it. With grace and good humor. And then we'll fix whatever caused the problems so that they don't trouble us again.

Hey, I'm just optimistic like that.

Wednesday, August 25

CBO: "There are 2 million *more* Americans working because of the Stimulus

WSJ online:
The Congressional Budget Office reports that the Obama administration's economic-stimulus plan has increased the number of employed Americans by between 1.4 million to 3.3 million during the second quarter.
Say what?

This is...well, "amazing" is one possible word. But a more accurate one is "bullshit." Let's see why:

All reports indicate that roughly two million fewer Americans are employed now than two years ago. But now--and by amazingly happy coincidence for Democrats, just nine weeks before the November election--the CBO suddenly reports that Obama and company have *increased the number of employed Americans by 1.4 to 3.3 million in the second quarter.*

Now, I can see how an agency wanting to kiss the ass of the Democrats who run the entire federal government might say something like, "The CBO estimates that the Democrats' stimulus act resulted in 3.3 million more American being employed now *than would have been employed without the Act." Or something equally amorphous and impossible to verify like that.

But what they actually said was "have increased the number of Americans employed." **

To the ordinary reader (i.e. not a gubmint bureaucrat) that word "increased" would seem to mean there are *more* Americans employed today than two years ago. But of course, not only is this demonstrably, clearly false, it ain't even close.

There was a time when the CBO could be counted on to actually critically examine policies carried out by a president's administration. There was a time when they were bulldogs, gadflies, tireless uncoverers of waste, fraud and abuse.

This of course was when the president was a Republican. But with congress controlled by the same party that owns the oval office, the CBO has suddenly become a cheerleader for any Democrat policy or program, no matter how outrageously wasteful, ill-conceived or badly managed.

If you actually take the time to *read* the CBO report (warning, pdf) I think you'll come away shaking your head--it's all amazingly bullshitty gobble-speak. But such is the state of the so-called "watchdogs" in gubmint nowadays.

(** If you're thinking the WSJ reporter might have simply mis-quoted the CBO, he didn't.)

Let's play "turnabout is fair play"

Re the controversy over the proposed "9/11 victory mosque," a commenter on Big Journalism wondered how well Muslims would react if the shoe was on the other foot:
Suppose by some weird chance a dozen radicalized Christians blew up the tallest building in a major Muslim city, killing 3,000 people. And suppose--in our further bizarro hypothesis--the reaction here in the U.S. was not shock and offers of aid but cheering crowds in the streets. Finally, suppose 9 years later a group of Christians--having absolutely no relationship whatsoever to the guys who blew up the building--proposed to build a 13-story cathedral two blocks from the site of the earlier destruction.

Is there anyone on the planet who thinks the local Muslims in that city would EVER allow this project to go forward?

(h/t Missy8s)

To the 52-ers: We understand. Really

Dear 52-ers:

We understand that after 20-odd months of Obama's policies, a lot of you belatedly understand what liberalism, progressivism, and a 'socialist society' means.

And while the hard-core Left loves it, a lot of you who voted for O don't like it all. You may even be feeling embarrassed that you were duped by a charismatic politician who turned out to be a blame-America socialist.

Well, this is for you: It wasn't your fault.

The MFM carefully avoided revealing anything that might have made you leery of Obama. Like his refusal to release any college records, his membership in the New Socialist Party, his lack of any experience to speak of; the elaborate tap-dance around his refusal to release an honest *long-form* birth certificate; his tendency to vote "present" on hard ones and so on.

Unless you were reading conservative blogs, you had no way of knowing what the guy was really all about. Instead you were entranced by the idea of electing a Democrat and a mixed-race guy as president. (His race isn't the problem.)

Hey, we understand.

Hopefully your kids--and their kids--will be just as understanding.

Tuesday, August 24

DHS dismissing thousands of deportation cases

The Houston Chronicle reports that the Department of Homeland Security is dismissing deportation cases against large numbers of illegal aliens.

Once again we see our nation's laws being selectively enforced. If you're politically connected or a member of a "protected" (politically favored) group you can break virtually any law and get away with it--as in the case of Obama's Aunt Zeituni.

This is de-facto amnesty, by executive order.

I say again: Given the highly controversial nature of this action, it would never have been instituted by DHS without the approval of the Obama administration.

And it can be predicted (with 100% assurance) to have three effects: Higher costs to taxpayers for services for illegals; more crime; and eventually, more votes for Democrats (whether legally or otherwise).

Wake up, people--your country is being stolen from you, bit by bit, every day.

Monday, August 23

CAIR polishes their propaganda

From The Hill:
The Cincinnati chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) says Congressman Boehner’s (R-Ohio) opposition to the proposed Islamic center two blocks from the site of the 9/11 terrorist attacks is “offensive and deeply disturbing,” Cincinnati.com reported.

“By stating that building a mosque to accommodate American Muslim worshipers a few blocks away from the site of the 9/11 attacks is somehow wrong...

"Somehow wrong"? Somehow I don't think the people planning Muslim strategy are really as obtuse as you pretend. I don't think you bastards are really mystified as to why normally welcoming, normally tolerant Americans oppose this project by two-to-one.

“By stating that building a mosque to accommodate American Muslim worshipers a few blocks away from the site of the 9/11 attacks is somehow wrong, Congressman Boehner is implying that American Muslims bear collective guilt for those attacks,” the group said.

"Collective guilt"? Funny, I didn't get that implication at all. In fact, just the opposite: All the conservative leaders I'm aware of have been extremely careful to not blame ordinary Muslims for the 9/11 attacks--any more than we blamed all Japanese for the attack on Pearl Harbor, or all Germans for the death camps.

What I am seeing is a growing number of Americans who are finally waking up to what Islamic leaders around the world are saying and doing, and to the true nature of Islam insofar as its command in the Koran to rule the entire world.

So for those of you who buy into that goal, then yes, I will add you to the rather large group of other tyrants who have wanted to subjugate free men throughout history. If you want to take over the world, I consider you guilty--and whether individually or collectively doesn't make a damn bit of difference to me.

Let me re-phrase that so that you more dedicated moonbats get it: If you pledge your support to a faction--whether religious or otherwise--that has the stated goal of trying to take over the world and convert or kill all who don't believe as you do, then you just became my enemy, and we cannot coexist on the planet.

The only way we have a chance of coexisting is if you openly, publicly renounce the goal just noted.

Somehow I don't think many of you are willing to renounce the goal of taking over the world.

Because if you do, you know all too well that your more extreme co-religionists will kill you.

Why did some seemingly smart people vote for Obama?

I've been puzzling over the fact that a lot of seemingly fairly intelligent, reasonably well-off Americans seem to have voted for Obama, despite his almost-blank resume, his seeming devotion for many years to the bigoted Jeremiah Wright, his membership in the New Socialist Party and so on.

Were a million or so Americans with IQs above 120 simply unable to see that the guy was determined to push through programs that would likely destroy the country? Or did they just "drink the KoolAid" and literally not have any idea of the guy's background?

I really can't believe that anyone who knew what Obama's views really were, and the types of programs he promised to enact; was smart enough to know these would likely do great harm to our country would still vote for the guy anyway. Even as cynical as I am about leftists, I can't believe anyone raised in this country in reasonably comfortable circumstances could want to harm it.

So that leaves one of the first two options.

And I think commenter Fat Man at Vanderleun's American Digest nailed it:
A lot of Obama voters have high IQs. [But] they used their intelligence to convince themselves that [Obama] was something he never was.... Their intelligence enabled them to ignore... the available evidence. [and to convince themselves that the fact] that he was a hard left Chicago politician of limited abilities and no executive experience, who did not understand or even like the USA -- was irrelevant.

Which is more deadly: Atomic bombs or progressive policies?

Blogger "Vermont Woodchuck" at New England Republican is on fire. You really need to go see this: a comparison of a couple of Japanese cities in 1945 and last year.

He then posted pics of another city devastated by warfare. But this time it wasn't atomic bombs that inflicted the damage. Or house-to-house fighting by heavily armed men.

Instead the city was...Detroit. And the warfare was the type unleashed when liberals or so-called "progressives" use their socio-atomic weapons on an unsuspecting populace. Those weapons are every bit as devastating as atomic bombs, turning everything in range into useless, decaying junk in just a few years.

And then the parasites re-group, leave the stripped corpse and turn their attentions to some other unsuspecting city.

Whatever the citizens there are doing successfully, they'll insist that the thing be done a different way.

Their way.

And they'll throw millions of dollars of taxpayer money at it, just like that crappy Chicago Annenberg Challenge project that Obamao chaired. That little socio-atomic bomb burned up $150 million in six years and produced exactly...no positive results in terms of education.

But it did one hell of a fine job for the folks running the show, though. That would be one Barrack Hussein Obama.

L.A. Times: Mosque controversy a "black eye" for the U.S.??

Headline in LA Times, August 23, 2010: "New York mosque controversy worries Muslims overseas"

Oh no! Poor babies! We wouldn't want a controversy here in the U.S. to "worry" ya.

Borzou Daragahi writes,
The heated debate across America over construction of the so-called ground zero mosque is reverberating across the globe, with the potential of creating a worldwide black eye for the United States.
Say what? Muslim fanatics destroy the two tallest skyscrapers in NYC, killing 3000 Americans; then less than a decade later Muslims want to build a mosque on a site literally hit by the wreckage...and this reporter writes that it's giving a black eye to...the United States? This is pure propaganda--totally beyond rational discourse.
Many Muslims abroad are miffed by the stateside debate...

Uh-oh, we don't wanna get those folks "miffed." Cuz when that happens, they start rioting and shit. But wait... how can that happen, when they're supposedly all "religion of peace" and...

Look! It's Brittney!
...that has grown so loud as to become a topic of discussion on talk shows and newspapers [worldwide]. The proposed Cordoba House has become a symbol of America's fraught relations with the world's 1.5 billion Muslims.
Gee, wonder how our relations with all those folks ever got so "fraught"? Could it possibly have anything to do with two attacks on the WTC, two embassy bombings, innumerable beheadings of westerners, etc? And...gee, wasn't there some common thread linking all those deaths and attacks? Hmm...it's right there on the tip of my tongue...
"Rejecting this has become like rejecting Islam itself," said Ahmad Moussalli, a professor of Islamic Studies at the American University of Beirut. "The United States has historically been distinguished by its tolerance, whereas Europe, France, Belgium and Holland have been among those who have rejected the symbolism of Islam. Embracing it will be positively viewed in the Islamic world."
Oh yeah, that'll bring those stupid Americans around: Call 'em "intolerant." Or "raaacist."

Ah, you just keep telling us how intolerant we are, you elite, Ivy-schooled LA Times editors. Keep telling us how we're just Islamophobic--ignoring the thousands of mosques here that no American has raised a finger or voice against.

Keep talking.

You could have predicted this: City demands license to blog.

You knew this was coming: The Philadelphia city council has demanded that bloggers who have any ad income obtain a "business license" from the city.

So how much do the all-powerful councilwhores want bloggers to pay? Well, where I live a permit to have a garage sale runs about six bucks. So you'd probably guess that for a blog that makes a grand total of 20 bucks a year, the city would charge maybe five or ten bucks, eh?

Wrong, you stupid-bitter-clinger-wingnut. Try $300.

But we must hastily add that this is touted by the city as a one-time fee that's good forever. (Yeah, I'll sure make book on that promise!) If that's too steep for you, the city also offers a one-year license for a paltry $50.

"What's the big deal," I hear liberals and so-called "progressives" saying. "It's long been accepted that Governments [capital G--remember who's speaking here] at all levels have the power to levy taxes. It's not like anyone's trying to restrict anyone's freedom of speech or something!"

And indeed, people with no dog in this fight look at this kind of reasoning and think, "Now that you explain it like that, if it's a 'business' I can see where the city should be able to tax it as they see fit." And it's true that the city avoided the trap of claiming that ALL bloggers were running a business (even if one with zero income) and demanding that they all pay for a license.

But the current action is a mere hair's-breadth away from that point. One of the councilwhores said something like (paraphrasing) 'It doesn't matter if they lost money, or never make a profit. All that matters is that they received any income at all.' And that does have bureaucratic logic to it.

Of course commenters on the article suggested innovative ways to avoid the license fee: If the physical server isn't within the city limits, and the blogger has no physical office, so declares their place of business as an PO box in Scranton, what basis would the city have for claiming it was a business inside the city limits?

Your naivete is touching, grasshopper. Simple: Your blog's "product" consists of posts you write, right? Which obviously come out of your brain. Which lives at 4th and Elm in Philly along with the rest of your body. Q.E.D.

Hey, says the city attorney, if the rubes were prepared to accept a tax on carbon dioxide, they can't possibly be gutsy enough to object to this fee, eh?

And so the theft of our Constitutional freedoms continues in this, a barely recognizable shadow of the former United States.

Epilogue:
A commenter wrote, 'What's next--is the city gonna start demanding that kids get a license to sell lemonade on the front lawn?' But of course, some dipshit bureaucrat in Oregon literally did demand just that. (Warning, link is to MSPMS.)

Amazingly (and most uncharacteristically, for bureaucrats), the dipshit backed off after several thousand Oregonians stood up on their hind legs and brandished several hundred pitchforks and nooses. But as wonderful as that outcome is/was, that ain't the point!

Point is, any gubmint bureaucrat who tries to assess a costly business license on a blogger raking in twelve bucks a year needs to be...well, back in the old days the polite term was "defenestrated." Since only a dozen people under 30 know what the hell that means anymore, I'm gonna go with "vaporized" since it's so obviously hyperbole. But day-um...!

Sunday, August 22

Islamic logic in their own words

There's a lot of misinformation about the real goals of Islam. That's not at all accidental--the Koran actually instructs Muslims that it's fine to lie about your real aims in order to advance the faith.

So when a critic cites a passage in the Koran commanding Muslims to kill "infidels," the suave PR face of the cult soothingly reassures us in one of several predictable ways: The quoted passage is described as an early teaching that was later revised to something less deadly; or they'll cite a passage from the Bible that they construe as commanding Jews or Christians to kill.

But when they think their audience consists only of Muslims, they're more candid about their aims.

Occasionally an audiotape of one of these candid speeches is leaked--and it's enlightening. This has happened quite a few times in the last decade, but until recently you would never have heard about it because the information gatekeepers of the MFM didn't want you to. Fortunately the Net now allows us to bypass the gatekeepers.

In the U.K. there is (or was--hard to keep up) an Islamic nutter named "Abu Saif," who seems to have been a key firebrand speaker in London mosques. He's captured on this tape from 2007. (go to 1:23.) Hearing this person for 57 seconds will do more to show you what Islam is about than reading half a dozen books on the topic.

To show how twisted this guy is, consider this little gem from Saif: He says there's no freedom of religion (presumably in the U.S. or UK). Why? Listen to his reply:
Now are we to say that Muslims...can practice Islam fully in America? Say...I was a Muslim in America. Could I call for the destruction of the American government and the establishment of an Islamic state in America? No. So where is the freedom of religion? There is none.
Notice how he's defined freedom of religion in a way that's so warped as to be unrecognizable to most rational people: If he's not permitted to call for the destruction of the American government, he claims, there's no freedom of religion in America.

How...interesting doesn't quite capture it. But it's some word beginning with an 'i'...

Ah, that's it: Insane.

But why would the 'full' practice of his religion move him to want to call for the destruction of the American government and its replacement with an "Islamic state"?

And of course there you have the core of the mystery laid bare: Islam, as laid out by the Koran and preached by their religious leaders, believes democracy is an evil thing, to be destroyed.

Clever Liberal/progressives may counter that in that case we're perfectly safe, because of course the U.S. is not a pure democracy per se.

Cute.

Anyway, click the link and listen to this asshole for just 57 seconds. And then try to convince yourself that any type of peaceful coexistence with a guy like this is even remotely possible.

Latest Iranian missile has "message of peace"

If you tried making up stuff like this, nobody would believe it:

TEHRAN, Iran — Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Sunday inaugurated the country’s first domestically built long-range unmanned bomber aircraft, calling it an “ambassador of death” to Iran’s enemies.

Speaking to a group of officials, Ahmadinejad said, “The jet, as well as being an ambassador of death for the enemies of humanity, has a main message of peace and friendship.

Yes, "peace and friendship" was certainly the first image that came to my mind from this thing.

Particularly when Mahmoud called it an "ambassador of death."



Obama finally says something truthful!

In his weekly radio address of August 21, 2010, Obama uttered this pearl of wisdom:
The only people who don’t want to disclose the truth are people with something to hide.
This prompted a commenter to respond along the following lines:
So is that why you won't show us your long-form birth certificate or your college transcripts?

Nice. (h/t Vermont Woodchuck, via Weasel Zippers)

Saturday, August 21

"Nuclear detonation at..."

For over 17 years now I've been watching the war unfold between Islam and the rest of the world.

Astonishingly, half of all Americans--liberals, Democrats and so-called "progressives"-- won't admit there's a war going on.

Or they rationalize any...um, what's the newest gubmint-approved term? Oh yeah, that's right: "man-caused disasters." So leftists use some dismissive phrase like "What do you expect? After all, we attacked them first."

No kidding--some on the Left really believe that.

Another favorite Leftist trick is to use America's famous tolerance against us. Thus anyone opposed to the building of a 13-story mosque at ground zero was denounced as an "Islamophobe" or a religious bigot. It's warfare a la Saul Alinsky: Make your opponent to live up to his own rulebook.

Well, enough.

It's time we took the controls back from the liberals. To hell with so-called "progressives." It's time to fight.

Reason? Iran. Russia just installed the uranium fuel rods in Iran's first large (as in, huge) nuclear reactor. And hours later the head of Iran's nuclear program said they were planning to continue to continue their program of enriching uranium fuel.

In case you're hazy on the mechanics of nuclear weapons, that means they're continuing with development of an atomic bomb.

Now: The track record of Iranian president Achmadinejad (student leader when Iranians took over the U.S. embassy in Tehran in 1979) suggests he wouldn't pass up a chance to take on the U.S. Osama bin Laden showed that Muslims could kill 3,000 Americans and cause more than $300 billion in direct damage to our largest city and the U.S. couldn't effectively retaliate--because the hijackers weren't State actors.

If the folks who attacked you are fewer than 50 fanatical suicidal lunatics instead of uniformed soldiers of a foreign government, it does seem a bit harsh to turn, say, 90 percent of Kabul and its residents into radioactive glass.

If massive retaliation is off the table, it's likely Achmadinejad probably wouldn't pass up the chance to try to top 9/11. Once Iran has a small stockpile of atomic bombs, the best way to do that would be for one to be "stolen by terrorists." Iran would announce this openly, and might even go through the motions of asking Interpol for help in tracking down the thieves. But it would just be for show.

Because of course the bomb wouldn't have been "stolen-stolen."

Over the next several weeks the intel would start to trickle in: 'Informants suggest the bomb's here.' Raid finds nothing. Repeat until law enforcement stops reacting. Then the alleged thieves start issuing specific ultimatums: "If the U.S. doesn't pull troops out of country X, we'll set off the bomb in city Y." This could go on for months.

The next level would be for the alleged thieves (let's just say al-Qaeda for convenience) to start the rumor that the bomb is being taken to a named American city, with a planned D-day of X. What would that do to the local economy, traffic and law enforcement as the alleged day approached?

Then eventually al-Qaida would detonate the bomb in an American port. And why not? Because they know we couldn't prove it was an inside job. And without abolute, ironclad proof (which liberals would always challenge as insufficient), then unless something remarkable changes in our mind-set before that day, 52% of Americans would prefer not to retaliate against
Iran rather than retaliate if it's even remotely possible they were telling the truth and had nothing to do with the "theft."

I've been war-gaming variants of this scenario for over a decade now, and I keep hoping to find a hint that some different result can be achieved. But I haven't been able to once Iran gets the Bomb.

That doesn't mean there's no way to change the outcome just described. It's always possible for Israel to take out Iran's nuclear program on its own. Or we can do it ourselves--though obviously not while Obama is in office.

Another possibility--not at all unlikely--is an Iranian revolution that takes out the entire radical leadership. The Iranian people very nearly had one last April, but when they didn't get any word of encouragement from the U.S. government the mullahs unleashed the thug squads and the protesters were crushed, hanged or tortured.

Still another possibility is that Iran's nuclear weapons program suffers a series of mysterious accidents. After all, during WW2 an American scientist almost set off an accidental detonation while pushing a pair of uranium disks around a desk. It's dangerous business.

But once they have a few bombs dispersed to various locations, so they can't all be smoked at once, the die seems cast--at least from what I can see.


Bill Whittle has a good video essay of why we're at war, and why ignoring it or hoping they'll go away is no longer an option.

Friday, August 20

Democrats/leftists suddenly in favor of property rights

I'm amused by the very recent rush by American Leftists to defend the rights of property owners.

In fact, it would probably be more accurate to say that Leftists seem suddenly to have come to the realization that property owners actually have rights.

This conversion was prompted by the discovery that two-thirds of Americans--obviously all of whom were religious bigots who were frightened by non-Christian religions--opposed the building of a mosque at ground-zero.

Such opposition was just too un-American for Leftists to tolerate, so they suddenly decided that a) private property owners have rights; b) that among those rights is the right to build whatever the owner likes, no matter if a huge majority of Americans find it offensive; and c) that anyone who raises any objection to the exercise of such rights by property owners is obviously a bigot who doesn't believe in the Constitution.

Wow, that was...quite a conversion.

Remember the case Kelo v. City of New London ? You don't if you're a Leftist. Because in Kelo a city condemned occupied private homes, then essentially gave the land they stood on to a private developer, because the latter proposed to build a shiny new project that would produce a lot more property taxes for the city than it was collecting for the existing older residential homes.

Whoa! I didn't think the Constitution would allow a city to use the power of "eminent domain" to take a private home from owner "A" and give it to private developer "B" like that!

Except 5 judges on the U.S. Supreme Court disagreed. By a 5-to-4 vote, the court ruled this was legal.

Now to the new case:

NYC is probably the highest-cost city in the U.S. and is always looking for ways to raise new tax revenue, right? And IIRC, churches of all flavors are exempt from property taxes, right? So if the Ground-Zero Mosque is built, the city will get very little tax revenue.

Suppose a "developer" proposed a plan that would supposedly produce lots of jobs and lots of high-dollar office space on that site. City signs up, condemns the existing buildings, turns 'em over to the developer, and the problem of the "9/11 victory mosque" is solved.

Oooh, wait. To do this we'd need to find a developer willing to put big bucks into such a project.

Don't worry: There's no need to actually follow through on the proposal.

After all, the developer in Kelo ended up not being able to find financing. So after Suzette Kelo's house was moved, the land slated for the project has remained vacant.

I suspect that the Left's new, alleged love for the rights of private property owners has a very short half-life. Just long enough to get a building permit, I'd guess. Then it's back to business as usual.

The new, improved Constitution--as rewritten by Dems

The new Constitution of the United States of America (as re-written by liberal Democrats and "progressives")

I. Every person in the United States, regardless of national origin or citizenship, has the right to an equal share of the nation's wealth (defined as the total production of all persons and corporations in the country).

II. You are entitled to this share even if you choose not to work--because fairness is one of the most important things to Democrats.

III. This Constitution is a "living document." This means that like all living things, its meaning is always changing. Change is good. Why would anyone want to be tied to the stodgy, fixed ideas of White males who died 200 years ago? We Dems are really big on Change.

IV. Because it's always changing, the actual legal effect of this Constitution at any given time cannot be determined simply from the words it contains--since those are obviously fixed. Instead, the meaning at any given time will be determined by the Democratic party, through its duly elected members of congress, and Democrat-appointed judges.

V. All citizens are encouraged to work and pay their taxes. Of course it hardly needs to be said that anyone who actually gets rich from hard work will be required to pay a much higher percentage of their income than people who don't work, or who work just enough to get by. This policy is obviously good because all wealth is amassed through theft. Plus it's simply not fair that some people choose to work harder than others. Democrats are really committed to the idea of fairness.

VI. As long as you keep voting for Democratic control of Congress, we'll continue to cut taxes for the poorest 80% of Americans. If you already don't pay any federal income tax, you'll get a big fat check. To pay for both these things, we'll raise taxes on the rich, since they're only rich because they're white and had rich parents. Remember, Democrats are all about fairness.

VII. Everyone knows that war is bad. As we Democrats always say, war is never the answer to anything. So in order to reduce war in the world, we hereby promise that the U.S. will never again go to war. Accordingly, why in the world would we need a huge military? So we will cut the Pentagon's budget by ten percent every year, and use the savings to hire more public-school teachers.

VIII. Capitalism is bad. Corporations are beyond bad--in fact we'd call corporations evil except Progressives aren't really comfortable with this whole notion of "good and evil." Accordingly, we will make every effort to strip corporations of all rights. When we're done with 'em, the only thing a corporation will be able to do is pay taxes. And create well-paying, dignified jobs for every American who wants one.

IX. All sexes are now equal, in every respect. Because the terms "miss" and "ma'am" carry an implication of a woman's marital status and are therefore potentially offensive to women, from now on those terms shall be illegal. Instead all people will be addressed simply as "citizen." This will also end the hurtful practice in some states of calling dislocated travellers who may not have all their documentation "illegal immigrants."

X. All rights not explicitly granted to the states or to the People in this document are reserved to the Federal government.

XI. A well-regulated Army now being unnecessary, and guns being responsible for the death of so many innocent people, the possession of firearms by anyone except bona fide law enforcement officers or government agents is prohibited.

XII. Everyone knows that totally free speech can often be hurtful. This is particularly true in political races. Accordingly, all advertisements, bumper stickers, editorials, blog posts and "other communications, whether print or electronic" must be approved by the Federal Election Committee before publication or dissemination. Republicans or conservatives submitting any of these forms of political speech for approval are advised to allow at least six months for the Committee to approve or disapprove your submission. So plan accordingly.

XIII. All members of Congress are hereby exempted from compliance with any law passed by Congress. (We've been running that way for decades anyway, but were starting to hear some complaints, so we thought we'd put it right in the Constitution.)

Thursday, August 19

"Expert says," journalists echo, no one questions

One of the problems with trying to get voters to make sound, informed decisions (other than the fact that half of American voters clearly don't have much sense) is that reporters with a leftist agenda (i.e. damn near all of 'em) write shit like this (from The Hill):
Roughly three-quarters of the oil that spilled into the Gulf of Mexico from BP’s ruptured well is still in the environment, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration official told a House panel Thursday.

It isn't until the sixth 'graf that the reader learns that the "three-quarters" figure is merely an estimate (as it had to be, of course). And to the reporter's credit, in this same graf he notes that this "appears to be merely an educated guess.

"

This give the story an entirely different thrust. But the story's lede suggests there's nothing fishy about the "three-quarters" figure.

I'm not trying to minimize the damage caused by the blowout--which damage now includes the government's foot-dragging or outright refusal to issue drilling permits on shallow leases. But if you read the official's testimony, what he's really saying is, "We can't find as much oil from the blowout as we expected. And we don't know why we can't find it. So since we don't know of any natural process that would have made the spilled oil go away, we'll just claim that 3/4ths of it is still there. Even though we can't find it."

This kind of "expert" testimony, of course, will be used by opponents of oil to claim things are worse than you ever thought possible, and to either push for a permanent ban on offshore drilling in U.S. waters, or to load so many new layers of requirements on those wanting to drill here that drilling off the U.S. becomes prohibitively expensive.

Hmmm...you don't suppose that's their goal, do you?

The Hill re-writes McCain post, omits key word

Late last night, as the last American combat troops were leaving Iraq, Senator John McCain put the following on his Twitter account:
Last American combat troops leave Iraq. I think President George W. Bush deserves some credit for victory.
Here's how reporter Jordan Fabian re-wrote that for The Hill: First the headline:
McCain says Bush adminstration deserves "some credit" for Iraq troop exit
Then the lede:
Former President George W. Bush deserves "some credit" for the last combat units leaving Iraq on Wednesday night, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said.
It's left as an exercise for the reader to determine whether the reporter and the Hill deliberately misquoted Senator McCain to omit that small word, "victory."

Because Lord knows the Democrats and their support wing, the MSM, could never allow the use of the "V-word" when it comes to Iraq.

Mosque developer: "We are *nowhere near* ground zero."

If I hadn't seen a vid of this one I wouldn't have believed it.

The developer of the "ground-zero mosque"--Sharif El-Gamal--is on video saying
We [the site of the proposed mosque] are nowhere near the World Trade Center site.
Um...Surely he didn't mean that. It's probably an artifact of trying to translate from one's native language into English while being interviewed--hard to do sometimes.

But dude..."nowhere near"?

Of course after the managing editor of the Associated Press sent out the style letter ordering all reporters to stop using the phrase "ground-zero mosque" perhaps you just figured you could get the stupid bastards to take it one more step, eh? Swallow one more piece of crap, as it were.

Next you're gonna be screamin' that the reason 9/11 happened was because Boosh invaded Iraq.

I realize the developer has an axe to grind, but seriously...don't piss on my leg and tell me it's raining.

Wednesday, August 18

The mystery of Obama's BC stonewall

I'm fascinated by coverups--the efforts made by people to hide inconvenient events or truths under a cloud of clever (and not-so-clever) misdirections and lies.

This becomes even more interesting if the person trying to rewrite the facts has lots of influential supporters, as these individuals seize on certain facts or assertions to build "the legend" of what might have happened.

One of these situations is Barack Obama's birth certificate.

Ordinary people are required to produce certified paper birth certificates to get a passport or a driver's license. The presidency is the highest office in our country--one for which the Constitution demands that the holder be a "natural-born citizen." Why is it that Obama was never required to produce a certified copy of his actual birth certificate to run for President?

I don't know where Obama was born. And other evidence suggests it may well have been in Hawaii. But the cloud of misinformation promulgated by various reporters and government agencies strongly suggests that regardless of where he was born, there's something he's been trying very hard to hide about his birth certificate.

Contra to stories in Newsweek, posts on FactCheck.org and Kos, Obama never actually "released" a birth certificate. The event underlying all these stories started with a post by "Kos" on his blog, on Thursday, Jun 12, 2008 at 08:44:37 AM PDT. The post contained a jpeg image, 2427 x 2369 pixels, of a green and white printed form titled "Certification of Live Birth," and bearing Obama's name.

On the original post, at least, Kos said nothing about the origin of the image; simply stating, "In any case, here is Obama's birth certificate."

Four days later, on June 16th, FactCheck.org ("Annenberg Political Fact check") posted this:
"Q: Has Obama's birth certificate been disclosed?"

"A: Yes. His campaign made a copy public after speculation by conservative bloggers that he might not be a natural-born citizen. We asked for and received a copy from the Obama campaign. It is too large to display full size on this page, but you may click on this link to see a copy of the document just as we received it."
FactCheck went on to say that the image had been emailed to them by Tommy Vietor at the Obama campaign. They quote Vietor as writing, "there have been some rumors spreading about Obama’s citizenship, so I wanted to make sure you all had a copy of his birth certificate."

The image was 2550 x 3300--considerably taller than the Kos image. The reason is that above the top printed border is a margin some 4 inches high, bearing the green security background but no black overprinting. Otherwise the image appeared identical to the one posted by Kos.

Six weeks later, on August 1, 2008, FactCheck went farther, claiming: "FactCheck.org staffers have now seen, touched, examined and photographed the original birth certificate."

Both these images depict an absolutely flat "document", with no folds or creases. The entry to the right of the heading, "Certificate Number" is blacked out. The lower left corner of this form has the label "OHSM 1.1 (Rev 11/01) LASER."

For those unfamiliar with image processing, a resolution of 2550 x 3300 is good enough to show a great deal of detail.

Later FactCheck posted several different images of this same document. These images--as large as 3072 x 2304--depict a three-dimensional document that is folded and partially shadowed, rather than being perfectly flat with uniform light. Unlike the first image, on these images creases or folds in the paper are clearly visible.

These images also differ from the first image in that the box for "Certificate Number" now shows an entry: 151-1961-010641.

In addition, a clearly visible round pattern--consistent with that made by a seal--is located about one inch right of and below the document's center. Even at 2550 x 3300 resolution, no such pattern is visible on the first image.

No physical copy of this document has ever been produced for independent examination.

As for the claims by staffers from FactCheck.org to have "seen, touched [and] examined...the original," it should be noted that FactCheck.org is also known as "Annenberg FactCheck." Obama was a member of the board of directors of the "Chicago Annenberg Challenge," and then elected by the Board as chairman and president of the CAC. He resigned as chairman and president in September 1999 to run for Congress.

Clearly, Obama was Annenberg's shining star. Thus even if claims by FC staffers are taken at face value, one would scarcely expect such wholehearted, ardent Obama supporters to have been suspicious of a forgery or rigorous in their examination of the document on which Obama's viability as a candidate--and later, legitimacy as president--so obviously depended.

In any case, since no information on the image is inimical to Obama's interests, it's hard to see any logical reason why the White House would not have invited independent witnesses to examine the physical document--unless, of course, it could easily be recognized as a forgery.

Nevertheless, once the images were posted by Kos and FC--and dutifully reposted by dozens of other pro-Obama websites--strategists for the campaign thereafter claimed that Obama had indeed "produced a copy" of his birth certificate, and that the matter was therefore settled.


Next: There has been a great deal of confusion over whether the image described above, entitled "Certification of Live Birth" is in fact the same as a "Birth Certificate." At first glance there would seem to be no difference, but in 1961 the state of Hawaii issued a much more detailed birth certificate to every parent. It was a hand-filled form (as opposed to the computer-generated "OHSM 1.1" form in the jpegs) containing 23 numbered rectangular boxes of information, including name of hospital, name and signature of the delivering doctor or midwife, and name and signature of the local registrar.

This document was titled "Certificate of Live Birth."

Certificate, certification--to most voters the two terms would have to refer to the same thing.

Except they don't.

For brevity's sake we will refer to this second, far more detailed form as a "long-form birth certificate."

Some newspaper stories have claimed that Hawaii stopped using long-form birth certificates before Obama was born. This is ludicrous crap, and easily discernable as such. But the unsupported assertion has entered the arsenal of those seeking to debunk the no-birth-certificate story.

Conservatively, tens of thousands of parents and kids in Hawaii have either originals or photocopies of their long-form certificates. Many people have uploaded their own long-form certificates to the Net, showing that this form was used at least two years past Obama's date of birth.

The Honolulu Advertiser ran a story on a woman who gave birth to twin girls the day after Obama was born. [I saw the original but now the link returns 'error'] By coincidence, the delivery was in the same hospital where Obama claims to have been born.

The woman's name is Elearnor Nordyke, and the article in the Honolulu paper shows her holding up photostats of the long-form birth certificates of her twin girls--again, born the day after Obama, in the same hospital where Obama claims to have been born.

So the long form was clearly being issued when Obama was born. In that case, where is Obama's long-form certificate, the one with all the details available as to hospital, doctor et cetera? If it exists, why didn't the campaign simply release it?

The most logical reasons are either that it doesn't exist, or that and contains information which would be damaging to Obama's "legend."

The campaign strategists obviously knew they had to de-fuse this question--so they called on their friends in the MSM to begin damage control:

One of the organizations that could be expected to provide invaluable help would be CNN. On July 23rd, 2009, Jon Klein, president of CNN/ U.S., sent an email to a handful of staffers of "Lou Dobbs Tonight" regarding coverage of the controversy about whether Obama was actually a "natural-born citizen."

Klein had previously asked CNN researchers to research the question of why Obama wouldn't produce his original birth certificate. The network's researchers claimed to have contacted the Hawaii Health Dept. and were told (they said) that paper documents were "discarded" in 2001 when the department went to electronic records.

The choice of the word "discarded" is interesting. It implies that the paper copies were destroyed, but carefully avoids saying so directly. It could be used if the paper copies were merely archived or put aside in favor of much more convenient electronic copies. It's usefully ambiguous.

But according to an article by Dan Nakaso of The Honolulu Advertiser (published in USAToday),
the public information officer for the Hawaii DOH, Janice Okubo, said she was not aware of any paper birth certificate records being destroyed when the department converted to electronic records in 2001.
When the department went electronic in 2001, vital records, whether in paper form or any other form, [were] maintained. We don't destroy records.

Any records that we had in paper or any other form before 2001 are still on file within the department," she insisted.
So Klein's story--allegedly the product of CNN's researchers--contradicts the PIO at the state's Health Department.

If Obama was born in Hawaii, as he claims, he must have had a long-form birth certificate. State officials claim they didn't destroy any paper birth certificates. So unless someone other than the state of Hawaii has destroyed it, it should still exist in their records.

If so, why not release it and end the lingering doubts?

Again, there are just two obvious answers: Either it never existed, or it contains information that would be embarassing enough to Obama that he'd rather try to bluff it out.

==

First, note the word "disclosed"-- as opposed to "released." To the casual voter, the two are synonymous, but clearly they're not. Second: FactCheck (great name) cleverly blurs the distinction between "a copy" and an image. The phrase "We asked for and received a copy from the Obama campaign" suggests a physical copy, rather than an image. But the next sentence admits the truth: No one outside the Obama group has seen more than an image.

Finally there is the consistent use in print stories of a phrase to the effect of, "
Hawaii state law forbids the release of birth certificates to anyone but the persons named in the documents or their immediate relatives." Apparently reporters and editors believe this explains to the average reader why the state would not allow investigators to see a copy of Obama's birth certificate.

But this is obviously a red herring--a misdirection. Because the question has never been "Why won't Hawaii show me the certificate," but "Why won't Obama--who can obviously obtain his own--display it to reporters and investigators?"
==

Article in USAToday, July 28, 2009, by
Dan Nakaso, The Honolulu Advertiser:

Last week, CNN's Lou Dobbs demanded Obama's original birth certificate. CNN/U.S. President Jon Klein told staffers of Lou Dobbs Tonight that the issue is a "dead" story, Kline told the Los Angeles Times in an interview published Sunday.

In an e-mail, the Times reported, Klein wrote that CNN researchers determined that Obama's 1961 birth certificate no longer exists because Hawaiian officials had discarded paper documents in 2001 — a claim denied Monday by Hawaiian health officials.

In 2001, Hawaii's paper documents were reproduced in electronic format, but "any paper data prior to that still exists," Health Department spokeswoman Janice Okubo said.

Okubo would not say where Obama's original birth certificate is but said, "We have backups for all of our backups."


NY Times praises Dem push to register welfare applicants

Last week the NY Times ran an editorial titled, "A Welfare Check and a Voting Card." It praised the (In)Justice Department's decision to finally begin enforcing all federal immigration laws.

Just kidding!

The law in question is actually what's often called the Motor-Voter Act. You can review the details and the new rules laid down by...well, the Rulers in the Obama Administration...here.

The editorial itself is a marvelous piece of Democratic propaganda posing as a lofty exposition of the highest principles of philosophy. Example:
The administration will undoubtedly be accused of acting in a self-serving political way by making it easier for more Democrats to vote. The effort may have that effect. But it is worth remembering that the recession has brought millions of new people to food stamp and other welfare offices in the last two years, many of whom may not be traditional Democrats.
Notice how seamlessly the writer reassured all twelve of the Times's conservative readers that they shouldn't suspect nefarious motives here: 'You stupid conservatives worry that the reason DOJ has leaned on this was to make it easier for more Dems to register. Maybe so BUT...'

Here comes the reassurance:

'...note that the recession has brought many people into welfare offices who may not be traditional Democrats.'

Left unstated, of course, is that formerly hard-working victims of business closings and layoffs were overwhelmingly likely to have already been registered to vote. So the fact that a large number of these folks are seeing welfare offices for the first time does nothing to reassure that we're gonna see anything but a ten-to-one ratio of Dem registrants to all others, thanks.

But of course, the editorial writers at the Times wouldn't support this effort just to get new Democrats registered. Perish the thought! Instead they love the new move because..."it will bring more voters into public life"! And if well over 90% of them happen to be Democrats, well....hey, that's just the roll of the dice.
[T]he best reason to applaud the Justice Department’s new posture is that it will bring more voters into public life. When advocacy groups sued Ohio and Missouri to force their public assistance offices into complying, huge groups of new voters surged onto the rolls — more than 100,000 in Ohio, and more than 200,000 in Missouri. Nationwide enforcement by the Justice Department could add millions more. The more people who have access to the ballot, the better the country will be.
That last sentence should be savored for a minute or so to get the full sense of how twisted and propagandistic it is. "The more people who have access to the ballot, the better the country will be" implies that those not registered before now have been denied access to the ballot. (Hard to imagine the writer taking the time to tell us the obvious: that if you're not registered, you're not allowed to vote. Except of course in states where the election process is run by Democrats.)

And what of the writer's claim that registering people who couldn't decipher the requirements of registering heretofore (or couldn't get motivated enough to bother) will make the U.S. a better country?

Commenter Frederick Singer of Huntington Beach, CA hit it right on the nose:
A classic NYT editorial, bordering on self-parody.
Yes, I want my tax dollars used to spoon-feed voter registration, so people who are already living off my tax dollars can vote more money for themselves and higher taxes for me.
Nice.