DISSECTING LEFTISM -- MIRROR SITE  
Leftists just KNOW what is good for us. Conservatives need evidence..

Why are Leftists always talking about hate? Because it fills their own hearts  

The original of this mirror site is HERE. My Blogroll; Archives here or here; My Home Page. Email me (John Ray) here. Other mirror sites (viewable in China): Greenie Watch, Political Correctness Watch, Education Watch, Gun Watch, Socialized Medicine, Recipes and Australian Politics. (Click "Refresh" on your browser if background colour is missing)
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30 November, 2006

WARNING: Internet Explorer 7 update

I have received the following from a reader:

After being prompted by my computer to download and install the latest Windows update, it asked me to also upgrade my browser to IE7 (I was using IE6).I like to use IE most of the time because I run so many websites, and I like to see them through the same viewer as the majority of the population. So I decided to go ahead and update IE. After it finished, I was no longer able to launch an IE browser. In fact, any time I attempted to, it froze my entire computer. I even tried right clicking the IE icon on my desktop, so I could check on the settings and THAT made my computer freeze too. At first I thought it killed my internet connection, but fortunately I was able to connect using Mozila FireFox so I could do a quick search. What I discovered was that hundreds (probably thousands) of people have posted similar problems in the past week, meaning it is likely affecting MILLIONS of people. I simply did a Windows System Restore to yesterday's restore point, and all is good again. If you haven't updated to IE7 yet, I would suggest waiting for a few months and making sure the general word on the street is a "go" before trying it.

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WHAT A CONVERT TO ISLAM FOUND

In a fascinating memoir due in stores in February, "My Year Inside Radical Islam," Gartenstein-Ross describes how he was drawn to Islam because he saw it as a religion of peace. Over time, however, he watched himself and those around him seduced into a fanaticism that required them to loathe not only non-Muslims, but also Muslims who belonged to the wrong sect, listened to music or shaved. He had expected an open, accepting religion, only to hear sheikhs arguing that Muslims who leave the religion should be killed, that it is acceptable to kill civilians for jihad and that good Muslims should work to replace democratic governments with Shariah law....

He believes Americans need a more fact-based understanding of Islam, which requires the media to do a better job of reporting what Muslims think and say -- instead of papering over radical rhetoric. Once when a local reporter visited Al Haramain to write a piece on Ramadan, a co-worker refused to shake her hand, launched a defense of sorts of Algerian terrorists and lambasted a French policy that prohibited schoolgirls from wearing the hijab in class. The comments never made the story. Gartenstein-Ross writes, "And so, as I often did, the reporter chose not to acknowledge that a real clash of values existed here."

Islam's approach to homosexuality is another area that the left ignores in deference to multiculturalism. (Think of Bay Area liberals who voice outrage at the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy, but are silent about the Shariah policy on homosexuals -- 100 lashes or death.) Ditto the status of women.

Gartenstein-Ross also takes issue with those rose-colored-glass wearers who deny that there is any theological basis for Islamic extremism. "It's important to note that they do have an argument," he told me, if only to be able to engage them in argument and understand where they get their ideas.

Source

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BUSH GETS IT BUT CAN HE DO IT WITH A DEFEATIST CONGRESS?

President Bush said Tuesday he is not ready to abandon the battlefield in Iraq to sectarian insurgents whose violent attacks on innocent Iraqis are part of a broad goal to overthrow governments and send coalition forces running....

Insurgents "seek to convince America and our allies that we cannot defeat them and that our only hope is to withdraw and abandon an entire region to their domination," he said. "If we allow the extremists to do this, then 50 years from now history will look back on our time with unforgiving clarity and demand to know why we did not act."....

"Extremists are using terror to stop the spread of freedom. Some are Shiite extremists, others are Sunni extremists, but they represent different faces of the same threat. And if they succeed in undermining fragile democracies and drive the forces of freedom out of the region, they will have an open field to pursue their goals," Bush said in a speech at the NATO summit in Riga, Latvia....

Source

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ELSEWHERE

I have just put up some more mentions of recent events in my life for anyone who might be interested -- including mention of a talk I gave about global warming. See here or here.



Leftist arrogance and elitism vividly displayed above -- courtesy of Zombietime

Return of the Luddites: "For years, the Clinton wing of the Democratic Party, exercising a lock on the party's economic policies, argued that the economy could achieve sustained growth only if markets were allowed to operate unfettered and globally. Overcoming protests from labor unions, a traditional constituency, the Clinton administration vigorously supported free trade agreements like Nafta and agreed to China's admission into the World Trade Organization. This approach coincided with a period of economic prosperity, low unemployment and falling deficits. Over time, this combination - called Rubinomics after the Clinton administration's Treasury secretary, Robert E. Rubin - became the Democratic establishment's accepted model for the future. Not anymore. With the Democrats having won a majority in Congress, and disquiet over globalization growing, a party faction that has been powerless - the economic populists - is emerging and strongly promoting an alternative to Rubinomics."

Bush admin respects liberties: "After a delay of more than a year, a government board appointed to guard Americans' privacy and civil liberties during the war on terror has been told the inner workings of the government's electronic eavesdropping program. Members say they were impressed by the protections.... Board members said that they were impressed by the safeguards the government has built into the NSA's monitoring of phone calls and computer transmissions, and that they wished the administration could tell the public more about them to ease distrust. "If the American public, especially civil libertarians like myself, could be more informed about how careful the government is to protect our privacy while still protecting us from attacks, we'd be more reassured," said Lanny Davis , a former Clinton White House lawyer who is the board's lone liberal Democrat. Alan Raul, a former Reagan White House lawyer and the board's vice chairman, said he also was impressed. "We found there was a great appreciation inside government, both at the political and career levels, for protections on privacy and civil liberties," said Raul, author of a book of civil liberties. "In fact, I think the public may have an underappreciation for the degree of seriousness the government is giving these protections"

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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29 November, 2006

A MAN WHO PUTS HIS MONEY WHERE HIS MOUTH IS



Jeff McInturff is a 39-year-old emergency room doctor who twice put his life on hold for stints in the war in Iraq. Moved to re-enlist in the army after the horror of Sept. 11, McInturff first served with the Army Reserve in Kuwait in 2004, troubled only by the notion that he felt underutilized working at a combat support hospital. A year later, he was in southern Iraq for an additional four months, tending to sick and injured detainees at a prison camp. McInturff did all that as a statement about his commitment to his country and to the cause. While he has remained steadfast in his support for the war, the country has changed around him.

A recent visit to McInturff's four-bedroom home in a Granite Bay gated community found a doctor more determined than ever to support the war and more frustrated at American impatience with the military campaign.

On the heels of an election that swept the Democrats into power in the Congress and suggested the nation had moved toward the political center, McInturff's views seem practically missing in action in the media in recent weeks. He doesn't support a military withdrawal. He doesn't want to hear talk of a timetable. "Patience is a big issue," he said, seated with his back to a living room window that looks out to a wooded meadow where wild turkeys and peacocks roam. "Fortitude and patience are what win wars. I don't know if it's a consequence of our current lifestyle in which everything is fast -- made-to-use, ready-to-eat. We live in a very fast society. It's good for our lifestyle, but it makes us ill-prepared for the long haul."...

At one point in his first four-month assignment, McInturff succumbed to feelings that he wanted to quit, to go back to his hospital job in Roseville and say farewell to the military. It was at Thanksgiving two years ago that he was jolted out of that mood. "I was sitting at a table with an enlisted soldier from Kentucky. He was telling me about his life -- he ran a pet store and he just bought a house. I was feeling down because I felt like medically I was being underutilized. I didn't feel like I was accomplishing much. "As I was talking to him I realized here this kid was the embodiment of the American dream, starting without much, he had built up his life and was serving his country. During that dinner I realized I can't walk away. It sounds silly, but I felt like I couldn't leave this guy's health care to someone else. That's when I stifled that desire to get out."

McInturff has never wavered in his belief that the United States must be in it for the long haul, that victory must be the only answer. Asked what argument he would make to the many who have changed their minds about Iraq, McInturff thought for a moment and said, "What I would ask those individuals to do is try to set aside our whole purpose for going to war and ask yourself today, 'Do I want to win this war? If you don't want to win this war then you have to ask yourself why and what are the consequences if we choose to walk away. I think the clear consequences are more Iraqi deaths. You're going to see increasing influence over Iraq by neighboring countries like Iran and Syria, which I think we can all agree isn't beneficial."

When it is mentioned that many Americans no longer see victory as a possibility, McInturff replied, "Realistically, we have to have a long-term vision. I mean, our own democracy took a long time to find itself. One hundred years after we had a supposedly great start, we fell apart into a civil war. We had a great functioning democracy, and yet we started killing each other in untold numbers. While democracy is clearly the best alternative I've seen, it's not without its flaws and foibles. "We've really only given these people three years to establish one. There's no adding water and, bingo, instant democracy."

More here

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ELSEWHERE

The Democrat anti-Wal-Mart craze gets crazier: "Former Sen. John Edwards is to spend an hour at the Manchester Barnes & Noble tonight promoting his new book. We find his choice of venue very interesting. In Manchester, the local Wal-Mart store sits right behind the Barnes & Noble. It has more floor space, a parking lot several times the size of Barnes & Noble's, and is easier to access by car or public transportation. But Edwards would not be caught dead inside a Wal-Mart. Saying that the company pays its employees too little, Edwards has embarked on an anti-Wal-Mart crusade. He instructs his staff members and all Americans not to shop at Wal-Mart. ... So naturally Edwards is holding his book signing at Barnes & Noble instead of Wal-Mart. Which is too bad for his anti-low-wages campaign, because in Manchester Wal-Mart pays hourly employees more than Barnes & Noble does. The Barnes & Noble where Edwards will hawk his book pays $7 an hour to start. The Wal-Mart that sits just yards away pays $7.50 an hour. From 7 to 8 p.m., Edwards will bring business to a retailer that pays wages he thinks are so immorally low that they should be illegal. Meanwhile, right behind him, thousands of Granite Staters will be supporting a business that pays an Edwards-approved starting wage, but which Edwards wants everyone to boycott."

How Democrats support the troops: "The National Commander of The American Legion called on Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) to apologize for suggesting that American troops would not choose to fight in Iraq if they had other employment options. "Our military is the most skilled, best-trained all-volunteer force on the planet," said National Commander Paul A. Morin. "Like that recently espoused by Sen. John Kerry, Congressman Rangel's view of our troops couldn't be further from the truth and is possibly skewed by his political opposition to the war in Iraq." According to Rangel, "If a young fellow has an option of having a decent career, or joining the Army to fight in Iraq, you can bet your life that he would not be in Iraq.... Rangel was responding to a question during an interview yesterday on Fox News Sunday about a recent study by the Heritage Foundation which found that those enlisting in the military tend to be better educated than the general public and that military recruiting seems to be more successful in middle-class and wealthy neighborhoods than in poor ones."

Sometimes Chicago gets it right: "The death of Malachi Ritscher was reported by a local television station as just another frustration for commuters driving into Chicago one morning when police were told that a statue was burning and slowing-up traffic along the Kennedy expressway. This was not how the anti-war activist had envisaged media coverage when on November 3, he set up a video-camera and a small sign reading "thou shalt not kill" next to Chicago's Flame of the Millennium sculpture. He then doused his body in petrol and set himself on fire... Like the Czech student Jan Palach in 1969, or Buddhist monk Thich Quang Duc in South Vietnam in 1963, he had chosen the most dramatic and agonising form of suicide to draw attention to his protest against the Iraq war... What Mr Ritscher had not reckoned with was that people would continue to be more concerned with TV sport - and getting to work on time - as they drove past his flaming body.

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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28 November, 2006

THE 'EURABIA' MYTH

A dissenting view by RALPH PETERS. I tend to agree with him. I said something similar at the end of my leading post on 14th August

A RASH of pop prophets tell us that Muslims in Europe are reproducing so fast and European societies are so weak and listless that, before you know it, the continent will become "Eurabia," with all those topless gals on the Riviera wearing veils. Well, maybe not. The notion that continental Europeans, who are world-champion haters, will let the impoverished Muslim immigrants they confine to ghettos take over their societies and extend the caliphate from the Amalfi Coast to Amsterdam has it exactly wrong. The endangered species isn't the "peace loving" European lolling in his or her welfare state, but the continent's Muslims immigrants - and their multi-generation descendents - who were foolish enough to imagine that Europeans would share their toys.

In fact, Muslims are hardly welcome to pick up the trash on Europe's playgrounds. Don't let Europe's current round of playing pacifist dress-up fool you: This is the continent that perfected genocide and ethnic cleansing, the happy-go-lucky slice of humanity that brought us such recent hits as the Holocaust and Srebrenica. The historical patterns are clear: When Europeans feel sufficiently threatened - even when the threat's concocted nonsense - they don't just react, they over-react with stunning ferocity. One of their more-humane (and frequently employed) techniques has been ethnic cleansing.

And Europeans won't even need to re-write "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" with an Islamist theme - real Muslims zealots provide Europe's bigots with all the propaganda they need. Al Qaeda and its wannabe fans are the worst thing that could have happened to Europe's Muslims. Europe hasn't broken free of its historical addictions - we're going to see Europe's history reprised on meth...

Sound impossible? Have the Europeans become too soft for that sort of thing? Has narcotic socialism destroyed their ability to hate? Is their atheism a prelude to total surrender to faith-intoxicated Muslim jihadis? The answer to all of the above questions is a booming "No!" The Europeans have enjoyed a comfy ride for the last 60 years - but the very fact that they don't want it to stop increases their rage and sense of being besieged by Muslim minorities they've long refused to assimilate (and which no longer want to assimilate)....

Far from enjoying the prospect of taking over Europe by having babies, Europe's Muslims are living on borrowed time. When a third of French voters have demonstrated their willingness to vote for Jean-Marie Le Pen's National Front - a party that makes the Ku Klux Klan seem like Human Rights Watch - all predictions of Europe going gently into that good night are surreal.

More here

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NOTHING TRUMPS A FARMER

If we want the Muslims reined in, maybe we should get farmers onto the job

In the hot-off-the-press New Yorker (Nov. 27th issue), James Surowiecki nicely explains how politics prevents the use of economically and environmentally sound approaches to supplying fuel for Americans' automobiles.

To make a long story short, the political power of U.S. sugar farmers -- power that greedily burdens American consumers with policies that restrict the importation of sugar -- keeps the price of sugar in the U.S. so high that making ethanol from sugar is prohibitively expensive. And this result, according to Surowiecki, is unfortunate: "ethanol distilled from sugarcane is much cheaper to produce and generates far more energy per unit of input-eight times more, by most estimates-than corn does." But Uncle Sam's protection of sugar growers from foreign competition (along with some nefarious doings of the corn-growers' lobby) artificially makes producing ethanol from corn more attractive than producing ethanol from sugar cane. Here's Surowiecki:

"The favors granted to the sugar industry keep the price of domestic sugar so high that it's not cost-effective to use it for ethanol. And the tariffs and quotas for imported sugar mean that no one can afford to import foreign sugar and turn it into ethanol, the way that oil refiners import crude from the Middle East to make gasoline. Americans now import eighty per cent less sugar than they did thirty years ago. So the prospects for a domestic-sugar ethanol industry are dim at best.

We could, of course, simply import sugar ethanol. But here, too, politics has intervened: Congress has imposed a tariff of fifty-four cents per gallon on sugar-based ethanol in order to protect corn producers from competition. A recent study by Amani Elobeid and Simla Tokgoz, scientists at Iowa State University, projected that if the tariffs were removed prices would fall by fourteen per cent and Americans would use almost three hundred million gallons more of ethanol.

But that isn't likely to happen anytime soon: the Bush Administration proposed eliminating the ethanol tariff this past spring, but Congress quickly quashed the idea-Barack Obama was among several Midwestern senators who campaigned in support of the tariff-and the sugar quotas appear to be as sacrosanct as ever. Tariffs and quotas are extremely hard to get rid of, once established, because they create a vicious circle of back-scratching-government largesse means that sugar producers get wealthy, giving them lots of cash to toss at members of Congress, who then have an incentive to insure that the largesse continues to flow. More important, protectionist rules flourish because the benefits are concentrated among a small number of easy-to-identify winners, while the costs are spread out across the entire population. It may be annoying to pay a few more cents for sugar or ethanol, but most of us are unlikely to lobby Congress about it."


Note that the newly sainted Barack Obama is no less a scoundrelly politician than is anyone else who succeeds in that profession of predators.

Source

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ELSEWHERE

Capitalism creates jobs: "Today, the statistics bureau of Europe's two freest economies, Estonia and Latvia released their employment data. In Estonia, unemployment has fallen to 5.4% from 7.0% a year ago, while in Latvia, unemployment has fallen from 8.7% to 6.2%. In both cases, this occurred despite a significant increase in labor force participation. Total employment rose a full 6.2% in Estonia and by 7.2% in Latvia. While this rate of increase is unsustainable because first of all, there is a cyclical element in the Baltic boom (Both Estonia and Latvia have pegged their currencies to the euro and is therefore forced to adopt the loose monetary policy of the ECB) and secondly because Estonia and Latvia will soon run out of potential workers, this illustrates that low taxes and low welfare benefits will help to increase employment, contrary to the assumptions of certain leftist economists."

British welfare madness: "The welfare state cost 79 billion pounds last year, more than is spent on the entire education system, twice as much as on law and order and almost as much as on the NHS. It totals nearly 3,000 pounds a household a year.There are 51 different benefits, with 39 per cent of households claiming one or more. Although the Chancellor often boasts about his record on unemployment, there are 5.4 million people of working age who are out of work and living on benefits. Many of those are registered disabled; Britain has more long-term sick than any European country besides Poland. The benefits system has become so generous that being "on welfare" is no longer a mark of even relative poverty. Households with incomes of up to 66,350 pounds - which puts them in the richest fifth - can be entitled to welfare.

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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27 November, 2006

MESSAGE TO THE LEFT: THE ARABS NEED TO WANT PEACE TOO

Since its birth 58 years ago, Israel has always been prepared to compromise for peace. From Begin's agreement with Sadat in 1979 to the Arafat-Barak talks at Camp David in 2000, Israeli leaders have been prepared to challenge their own people in pursuit of peace. Last summer Israel withdrew from Gaza, angry settlers and all. Yet the terror from the Gaza Strip has continued - more than 1,000 rockets have been fired into southern Israel in the past year. Since 2000, nine fatalities have been caused by Qassam missiles.

Some media have reported the panic these missiles have caused but they downplay the impact because of the small scale of fatalities compared with those on the Palestinian side. My husband, a British soldier, is currently serving a tour of duty in Iraq. His unit has come under mortar fire nearly every night for the past six months. Not many service personnel have been killed by these missiles but every soldier fears that the next one might have his or her name on it. Do you think that a child, a parent or a grandmother in one of the towns bordering Gaza thinks there have been "only" nine fatalities? Can you imagine what that does to a civilian population?

We need to think carefully about the consequences of questioning the defensive reactions of a nation-state that is constantly bombarded by an enemy calling for its destruction, especially after it has withdrawn from Lebanon and Gaza. Would we as British citizens accept a single rocket on a British town, let alone hundreds?

The commentators' objection is that the response is "disproportionate". But how does a nation-state defend itself against a terrorist organisation or organisations that are part of, and deliberately hide behind, ordinary citizens? Of course the Israeli military and all military forces must act ethically. But if the number of civilian casualties continues to be the main issue, there is no incentive for the terrorists to stop using the civilian population as a shield.

We live in dangerous times when, in parts of the left especially, you can't be a friend to Islam or to Muslims unless you are anti-Israel. That is exactly what al-Qaida wants us to think. Events in Rochdale at the last election represent a microcosm of what we are sleepwalking into globally. The Islamists and the left argued that, because I supported Israel and its right to exist, all my work for my Muslim constituents was a lie. They suggested I was an opportunistic, neocon Zionist, aiming to dupe them.

Israel's willingness to compromise for peace has never been enough, because Israel alone cannot gain peace. The Palestinians and others in the region also have to want peace. Israel needs a serious interlocutor so that peace can stand a chance. So my question to the left is this: why not concentrate your attention there, rather than on the one player in the region who has always been serious about peace?

More here

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ELSEWHERE

There is a most interesting Bible study here on the theology of serving in the military.

Enlightened Saudis: "A presenter from King Saud University at an international medical seminar at the King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center caused a stir yesterday when he insisted that all women - including medical and media professionals - leave the room before he would enter the room to give his presentation. Initially some women expressed consternation at the request, but later relented and left the room so the doctor and orthodox man could give his presentation about Islam and the ethics of organ donation and end-of-life issues. Prior to the presentation by Dr. Yousef Al-Ahmed, the audience was informed that the doctor would not be in the same room with women when he spoke about medical ethics"

Russia helps Iran: "Russia has begun delivery of Tor-M1 air defense missile systems to Iran, a Defense Ministry official said Friday, confirming that Moscow would proceed with arms deals with Tehran in spite of Western criticism. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the issue, declined to specify when the deliveries had been made and how many systems had been delivered. Ministry officials have previously said Moscow would supply 29 of the sophisticated missile systems to Iran under a $700 million contract signed in December, according to Russian media reports.... Russian officials say the missiles are purely defensive weapons with a limited range. According to the Interfax news agency, the Tor-M1 system can identify up to 48 targets and fire at two targets simultaneously at a height of up to 20,000 feet."

Muslim violence closes hundreds of Thai schools: "Hundreds of schools in Thailand's restive south will shut their doors in response to increasingly vicious attacks by suspected Muslim insurgents against teachers and schools, an official said on Saturday. The closure, which begins Monday, affects all 336 primary and secondary schools in the province of Pattani, where two teachers were fatally shot by suspected insurgents in the past two days. In one of the killings, attackers shot a school principal on Friday, then set his body on fire. The principal became the 59th teacher or school official killed in three years of violence, said Bunsom Thongsriprai, president of the Teachers' Association in Pattani. "Teachers can't bear what has happened," Bunsom said. "They are paranoid, worried and afraid." He said the province's schools, which teach about 100,000 students, will reopen when teachers feel safe. More than 1800 people have died from violence in Thailand's three southernmost, Muslim-majority provinces - Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat - since an Islamic insurgency flared in January 2004."

Canadian Tories pledge annual tax cuts: " The Conservative government issued a "guarantee" yesterday to Canadians that it will cut their taxes annually -- starting at $700-million next year and up to $1.4-billion in 2011 -- by redistributing the savings Ottawa secures from paying down debt. "We will do this every year: pay down debt, achieve interest savings and apply those savings to personal income-tax reductions," Jim Flaherty, the Finance Minister, said in describing the government's "tax-back" guarantee. "It's time to give Canadian taxpayers a direct stake and a direct benefit from balancing the budget each year and reducing government debt."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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26 November, 2006

THE HATE-FILLED JIMMY CARTER

More comments on Carter's hate-Israel book

* Carter emphasizes that "Christian and Muslim Arabs had continued to live in this same land since Roman times," but he ignores the fact that Jews have lived in Hebron, Tzfat, Jerusalem, and other cities for even longer. Nor does he discuss the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Jews from Arab countries since 1948.

* Carter repeatedly claims that the Palestinians have long supported a two-state solution and the Israelis have always opposed it. Yet he makes no mention of the fact that in 1938 the Peel Commission proposed a two-state solution with Israel receiving a mere sliver of its ancient homeland and the Palestinians receiving the bulk of the land. The Jews accepted and the Palestinians rejected this proposal, because Arab leaders cared more about there being no Jewish state on Muslim holy land than about having a Palestinian state of their own.

* He barely mentions Israel's acceptance, and the Palestinian rejection, of the U.N.'s division of the mandate in 1948.

* He claims that in 1967 Israel launched a preemptive attack against Jordan. The fact is that Jordan attacked Israel first, Israel tried desperately to persuade Jordan to remain out of the war, and Israel counterattacked after the Jordanian army surrounded Jerusalem, firing missiles into the center of the city. Only then did Israel capture the West Bank, which it was willing to return in exchange for peace and recognition from Jordan.

* Carter repeatedly mentions Security Council Resolution 242, which called for return of captured territories in exchange for peace, recognition and secure boundaries, but he ignores the fact that Israel accepted and all the Arab nations and the Palestinians rejected this resolution. The Arabs met in Khartum and issued their three famous "no's": "No peace, no recognition, no negotiation" but you wouldn't know that from reading the history according to Carter.

* Carter faults Israel for its "air strike that destroyed an Iraqi nuclear reactor" without mentioning that Iraq had threatened to attack Israel with nuclear weapons if they succeeded in building a bomb.

* Carter faults Israel for its administration of Christian and Muslim religious sites, when in fact Israel is scrupulous about ensuring every religion the right to worship as they please--consistant, of course, with security needs. He fails to mention that between 1948 and 1967, when Jordan occupied the West Bank and East Jerusalem, the Hashemites destroyed and desecrated Jewish religious sites and prevented Jews from praying at the Western Wall. He also never mentions Egypt's brutal occupation of Gaza between 1949 and 1967.

* Carter blames Israel, and exonerates Arafat, for the Palestinian refusal to accept statehood on 95% of the West Bank and all of Gaza pursuant to the Clinton-Barak offers of Camp David and Taba in 2000-2001. He accepts the Palestinian revisionist history, rejects the eye-witness accounts of President Clinton and Dennis Ross and ignores Saudi Prince Bandar's accusation that Arafat's rejection of the proposal was "a crime" and that Arafat's account "was not truthful"--except, apparently, to Carter. The fact that Carter chooses to believe Yasir Arafat over Bill Clinton speaks volumes.

* Carter's description of the recent Lebanon war is misleading. He begins by asserting that Hezbollah captured two Israeli soldiers. "Captured" suggest a military apprehension subject to the usual prisoner of war status. The soldiers were kidnapped, and have not been heard from--not even a sign of life. The rocket attacks that preceded Israel's invasion are largely ignored, as is the fact that Hezbollah fired its rockets from civilian population centers.

* Carter gives virtually no credit to Israel's superb legal system, falsely asserting (without any citation) that "confessions extracted through torture are admissible in Israeli courts," that prisoners are "executed" and that the "accusers" act "as judges." Even Israel's most severe critics acknowledge the fairness of the Israeli Supreme Court, but not Carter.

* Carter even blames Israel for the "exodus of Christians from the Holy Land," totally ignoring the Islamization of the area by Hamas and the comparable exodus of Christian Arabs from Lebanon as a result of the increasing influence of Hezbollah and the repeated assassination of Christian leaders by Syria.

* Carter also blames every American administration but his own for the Mideast stalemate with particular emphasis on "a submissive White House and U.S. Congress in recent years." He employs hyperbole and overstatement when he says that "dialogue on controversial issues is a privilege to be extended only as a reward for subservient behavior and withheld from those who reject U.S. demands." He confuses terrorist states, such as Iran and Syria to which we do not extend dialogue, with states with whom we strongly disagree, such as France and China, with whom we have constant dialogue.

Source. A previous post about the Carter book here on Nov. 16th.. It's a good thing that it was Nixon, not Carter, who was President during the Yom Kippur war.

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ELSEWHERE

British Airways buckles under pressure: "British Airways is to lift its ban on workers openly wearing small crosses after an unprecedented backlash from MPs, bishops and customers. BA made the decision after 100 MPs and 14 bishops joined a campaign of support for Nadia Eweida, a check-in worker who lost an employment appeal to wear a tiny cross. It comes after condemnation by the Archbishop of Canterbury and a threat from the Church of England to sell its 9 million pound stake in the airline. Despite winning a legal battle against its employee, the company said it would review its uniform policy to find a way to allow symbols of faith to be worn openly.... Miss Eweida, who has begun a second appeal, issued a statement saying that she hoped that it would help her to win her case. "If they are going to review the policy and allow Christians their place in the workforce, it is a big relief." The ban on Miss Eweida caused outrage because members of other faiths, such as Muslims and Sikhs, are allowed to wear religious symbols..... Ann Widdecombe, the former Conservative Home Office minister, said: "I cannot believe that a major company couldn't have worked out weeks ago that the way out of this was a review instead of taking everything to the wire and losing custom and goodwill en route."

Wal-Mart bank happening -- in Mexico: "Public opposition has all but killed Wal-Mart's plans to open its own bank in the United States. But in Mexico, its push for a bank is sailing through. The Finance Ministry has given final approval for the bank, Wal-Mart de M‚xico said Wednesday, and it will begin operating during the second half of 2007 and be called Banco Wal-Mart de M‚xico Adelante. A possible reason for the different reception in this country from that in the United States is that most Mexicans do not have bank accounts and Wal-Mart plans to offer them the opportunity to have one, making it hard for local activists to stir public outrage. And in this venture, it is possible at least for now to see Wal-Mart as the little guy. Among its competitors in the banking business are the Mexican units of global giants like Citigroup and HSBC, which have made little effort to attract the bulk of poor and working-class Mexicans"

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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25 November, 2006

ATTEMPT TO CRIMINALIZE SUSPICION OF MUSLIMS

Kudos to US Airways. Risking fines and a boycott, it did the right thing this week by removing a group of Muslim men from a flight to protect its crew and passengers. By most accounts, the six bearded men were behaving suspiciously at a time when airports were on high alert for sky terror during the holidays. "There were a number of things that gave the flight crew pause," an airline spokesman said. According to witnesses and police reports, the men:

* Made anti-American statements.
* Made a scene of praying and chanting "Allah."
* Asked for seat-belt extensions even though a flight attendant thought they didn't need them.
* Refused requests by the pilot to disembark for more screening.
Also, three of the men had only one-way tickets and no checked baggage.

Police had to forcibly remove the men from the flight, whereupon they were taken into custody. A search found no weapons or explosives, and they were released to continue on their journey.

Within hours, the men enlisted a Muslim-rights group to make a stink in the press, insisting they were merely imams returning home from an Islamic conference in Minneapolis. They say they were "harassed" because of their faith. But were they victims or provocateurs?

All six claim to be Americans, so clearly they were aware of heightened security. Surely they knew that groups of Muslim men flying together while praying to Allah fit the modus operandi of the 9/11 hijackers and would make a pilot nervous. Throw in anti-U.S. remarks and odd demands about seat belts, and they might as well have yelled, "Bomb!"

Yet they chose to make a spectacle. Why? Turns out among those attending their conference was Rep.-elect Keith Ellison, D-Minn., who will be the first Muslim sworn into Congress (with his hand on the Quran). Two days earlier, Ellison, an African-American convert who wants to criminalize Muslim profiling, spoke at a fundraiser for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Muslim-rights group that wasted no time condemning US Airways for "prejudice and ignorance."

CAIR wants congressional hearings to investigate other incidents of "flying while Muslim." Incoming Judiciary Chairman John Con-yers, D-Mich., has already drafted a resolution, borrowing from CAIR rhetoric, that gives Muslims special civil-rights protections.

While it's not immediately clear whether the incident was a stunt to help give the new Democratic majority cover to criminalize airport profiling, it wouldn't be the first time Muslim passengers have tried to prove "Islamophobia" -- or test nerves and security.

More here

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MORE LEFTIST SELF-DELUSION

David Frum is commenting on a review of a book about ancient Roman history:

And then I find this , in a Newsweek review by Tara Pepper:

Bryan Ward-Perkins's "The Fall of Rome and the End of Civilization" (256 pages. Oxford University Press) was published in paperback over the summer, and recently won the prestigious Hessell-Tiltman prize for history. In it he casts new light on the end of the Roman Empire, arguing that it was in fact an era of positive cultural transformation rather than decline.

I read Ward-Perkins' book last winter, and it is terrific, really an important new contribution. Well written and powerfully concise. I strongly, strongly recommend it. And it does cast new light on the fall of Rome - more than that, it positively revolutionizes contemporary understanding of the events of the 5th century of the Christian era - by attacking the currently fashionable idea that the fall of Rome "was in fact an era of positive cultural transformation ..." And as a special aid to lazy book reviewers like Pepper, Ward-Perkins even put his main thesis in his title.

Of course, something more than ordinary incompetence is at work here. As Ward-Perkins points out in a very courageous introduction, the idea that decline never happens, that all changes are in fact "positive cultural transformations" holds such a grip on the contemporary liberal mind that even so smashing and universal a catastrophe as the barbarian invasions of Europe gets reinterpreted out of existence. Instead, academics and the journalists who write about them have reinterpreted invasion, the collapse of civil authority, the implosion of Europe's economy, and the destruction of literacy and culture not as "decline," but as evolution toward a more vibrant diversity.

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ELSEWHERE

There is a great video here of a popular female singer who SUPPORTS the troops.

Iran in demographic decline: "Iran's plunging birth rate, I observed in essays past, will burden the country with an elderly population proportionately as large as Western Europe's within a generation, just at the point at which this impoverished country will have ceased to export oil. By 2030, Iranian society will collapse. One does not have to destroy an opponent's military forces to defeat him. Russia collapsed without a single shot fired when Mikhail Gorbachev and his generals understood that they could not compete with Ronald Reagan's United States. The Islamic world also has been defeated, by a globalized economy in which the US dominates the top, and China blocks entry at the bottom. As the most urbane people of Western Asia, the Persians grasped the hopelessness of circumstances quicker than their Arab neighbors. That is why they have ceased to bear children. Iran's population today is concentrated at military age; by mid-century, today's soldiers will be pensioners, and there will be no one to replace them..... In the case of Iran, deracination and cultural despair impel millions of individual women to eschew motherhood. ... Iranians already behave like a defeated people. That is why they are so unstable, and so dangerous. The new Persian Empire masquerading as an Islamic Republic is a wounded beast."

Courts protect illegals instead of sending them home: "A federal judge ruled Monday that a suburban New York village discriminated against Hispanic day laborers when it closed a hiring site and stepped up police patrols on the streets where they looked for work. The ruling against the Village of Mamaroneck could influence the treatment of day laborers elsewhere around the United States, where they have become an increasingly visible part of the immigration debate as they solicit construction and landscaping jobs. The victory is at least the second this year for day laborers in federal court. In May, a federal judge prohibited the city of Redondo Beach, California, from arresting day laborers for violating a local ordinance against soliciting work in public."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

**************************

"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



24 November, 2006

More selective attention to the facts from the Left

In recent months a spate of atheist books have argued that religion represents, as The End of Faith author Sam Harris puts it "the most potent source of human conflict, past and present". Columnist Robert Kuttner gives the familiar litany: "The Crusades slaughtered millions in the name of Jesus. The Inquisition brought the torture and murder of millions more. After Martin Luther, Christians did bloody battle with other Christians for another three centuries." In his bestseller The God Delusion, Richard Dawkins contends that most of the world's recent conflicts - in the Middle East, in the Balkans, in Northern Ireland, in Kashmir and in Sri Lanka - show the vitality of religion's murderous impulse.

The problem with this critique is that it exaggerates the crimes attributed to religion while ignoring the greater crimes of secular fanaticism. The best example of religious persecution in America is the Salem witch trials. How many people were killed in those trials? Thousands? Hundreds? Actually, fewer than 25. Yet the event still haunts the liberal imagination. It is strange to witness the passion with which some secular figures rail against the misdeeds of the Crusaders and Inquisitors more than 500 years ago. The number sentenced to death by the Spanish Inquisition appears to be about 10,000. Some historians contend that an additional 100,000 died in jail due to malnutrition or illness. These figures are tragic, and of course population levels were much lower at the time. But even so, they are minuscule compared with the death tolls produced by the atheist despotisms of the 20th century.

In the name of creating their version of a religion-free utopia, Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin and Mao Zedong produced the kind of mass slaughter that no Inquisitor could possibly match. Collectively these atheist tyrants murdered more than 100 million.

Moreover, many of the conflicts that are counted as "religious wars" were not fought over religion. They were mainly fought over rival claims to territory and power. Can the wars between England and France be called religious wars because the English were Protestants and the French were Catholics? Hardly. The same is true today. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not, at its core, a religious one. It arises out of a dispute over self-determination and land. Hamas and the extreme Orthodox parties in Israel may advance theological claims - "God gave us this land" and so forth - but the conflict would remain essentially the same even without these religious motives. Ethnic rivalry, not religion, is the source of the tension in Northern Ireland and the Balkans. Yet today's atheists insist on making religion the culprit.

Source

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COULTER ON THE SIX IMAMS

An excerpt:

Six imams removed from a US Airways flight from Minneapolis to Phoenix are calling on Muslims to boycott the airline. If only we could get Muslims to boycott all airlines, we could dispense with airport security altogether.

Witnesses said the imams stood to do their evening prayers in the terminal before boarding, chanting "Allah, Allah, Allah" -- coincidentally, the last words heard by hundreds of airline passengers on 9/11 before they died. Witnesses also said that the imams were talking about Saddam Hussein, and denouncing America and the war in Iraq. About the only scary preflight ritual the imams didn't perform was the signing of last wills and testaments.

After boarding, the imams did not sit together and some asked for seat belt extensions, although none were morbidly obese. Three of the men had one-way tickets and no checked baggage. Also they were Muslims.

The idea that a Muslim boycott against US Airways would hurt the airline proves that Arabs are utterly tone-deaf. This is roughly the equivalent of Cindy Sheehan taking a vow of silence. How can we hope to deal with people with no sense of irony? The next thing you know, New York City cab drivers will be threatening to bathe.

Come to think of it, the whole affair may have been a madcap advertising scheme cooked up by US Airways. It worked with me. US Airways is my official airline now. Northwest, which eventually flew the Allah-spouting Muslims to their destinations, is off my list. You want to really hurt a U.S. air carrier's business? Have Muslims announce that it's their favorite airline.

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ELSEWHERE

Another crazy Muslim: "A Muslim who killed a swan while fasting during Ramadan has been given a two-month prison sentence. Shamsu Miah, 52, killed the mute swan at a boating pond in Llandudno, North Wales, on September 25.When challenged by police he said: "I am a Muslim, I am fasting, I needed to eat." Llandudno magistrates were told that Miah, from the town, had white feathers stuck in his beard and blood on his shirt. Jim Neary, for the prosecution, said: "The officers told him the swan was the property of the Queen and he replied, `I hate the Queen, I hate this country'." Miah, who has no previous convictions, pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to intentionally killing a wild bird and possessing a bladed article. He was released from custody, having served two months on remand."

Europe as a BAD example: "Some Americans look to European countries such as France, Germany and its Scandinavian neighbors and suggest that we adopt some of their economic policies. I agree - we should look at Europe for the lessons they can teach us. Dr. Daniel Mitchell, research fellow at the Heritage Foundation, does just that in his paper titled "Fiscal Policy Lessons from Europe." Government spending exceeds 50 percent of the GDP in France and Sweden and more than 45 percent in Germany and Italy, compared to U.S. federal, state and local spending of just under 36 percent. Government spending encourages people to rely on handouts rather than individual initiative, and the higher taxes to finance the handouts reduce incentives to work, save and invest. The European results shouldn't surprise anyone. U.S. per capita output in 2003 was $39,700, almost 40 percent higher than the average of $28,700 for European nations ... We don't have to rely on these statistics to make us not want to be like Europeans; just watch where the foot traffic and money flow. Some 400,000 European science and technology graduates live in the U.S"

Inequality is just: "In a free market, income inequality is the inevitable result of individual productivity inequality, and of course productivity inequality exists due to variations in natural ability, industriousness, education, risk-aversion and dumb luck. The reason income equality has grown rapidly (although hardly "infinitely," as Mr. Webb hyperbolically asserts) is that productivity inequality has grown. And the reason productivity inequality has grown is that with the advance of technology and globalization, the impact of a good idea or exceptional performance can be leveraged dozens of times more than it could be even one generation ago. J. K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series, has made more than $200 million for each book she has written. Is that too much? Absolutely not, when one considers the benefits that each book brings to tens of millions of children (and adults) around the globe. But the impact of J.K. Rowling's creativity and hard work, and the income she has earned from it, would have been perhaps orders of magnitude smaller 30 years ago.

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

**************************

"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



23 November, 2006

CRICKET



Cricket is an immensely important sport in Australia and Australia wins the annual international "Tests" more often than not -- despite Australia having a much smaller population than most other cricketing nations.

Today, Australia is playing England -- always the most-followed matches -- and they are doing so at the "Gabba" in Brisbane -- within earshot of where I am sitting. I have just (4pm) heard a huge roar from the crowd so I imagine Australia must be doing well.



AMERICA'S COMING BURDEN

"The American people voted for change and they voted for Democrats to take our country in a new direction," said a triumphant Nancy Pelosi upon becoming the new Speaker of the House. This might well turn out to be a case of being careful what you wish for, lest it come true.

Not only is Pelosi herself radical, but many of the powerful Democratic committee chairmen-in-waiting are members in good standing of what veteran bipartisan presidential advisor David Gergen has called the "loony Left."

Much of American commerce that depends on innovative science and technology will likely suffer in the new regime - biotechnology, nanotechnology, and pharmaceutical R&D, to name just a few sectors. Many senior Democratic members of Congress and their staffs are relentlessly anti-science, anti-technology, and anti-business. Worst of all, they're uneducable. They remind me of the reputation of France's King Charles II, about whom it was said that he never learned anything and never forgot anything.

From my days as an official at the FDA during the '80s and early '90s, when the Democrats were in the congressional majority, I recall the incessant, uninformed, and highly politicized meddling by prominent members of Congress. They did incalculable damage to science and technology. And now they're back.

More here

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Brookes News Update

The Clinton recession and Britain's railway boom: What needs to be explained are the forces that create the boom, trigger off the speculation, create excess capacity and finally leave, as John Stuart Mill regretfully put it, so many "to repent at leisure"
Australian economy and the trade deficit: blame the Reserve Bank, not the market: It is the Reserve Bank of Australia that has been fuelling the housing boom, domestic borrowing and the demand for imports
Kevin Rudd's imaginary contradiction: Kevin Rudd has demonstrated that he has no grasp of the extended order, the concept of conserving but evolving institutions that lies at the very heart of free market liberalism. There is no contradiction between conservatism and economic liberalism
Why industrial relations reforms flopped with the public: The recent decision by the Fair Pay Commission to raise the minimum wage by $27 reinforces Senator Nick Minchin's embarrassing admission that the Government had failed to get a mandate from the Australian people for its labour market reform legislation
Are the Democrats already aiming for a boot in the jack-ass?: In a post-election poll 69 percent said they were concerned the Democrats would keep the president from doing what is necessary to combat terrorism, and 78 percent said they feared Democrats would seek too hasty a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq
A blueprint for a Republican victory: If the political spectrum were a football field and the network news anchors were acting as referees, "center" would be defined as the two yard line - in other words, somewhere in Hillary Clinton territory
Abortion stops a bleeding heart: With even liberals backing away from Roe, apparently the last group of people on Earth to realize the Supreme Court's abortion jurisprudence is a catastrophe is going to be the Supreme Court

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ELSEWHERE

Nutty British "security": "It's a Boy's Own gift that will be stuffed into thousands of Christmas stockings, but a retired brigadier has discovered that the credit card-sized toolkit - complete with 5cm (2in) blade, compass, tweezers and toothpick - could put the recipients on the wrong side of the law. Tom Foulkes, 56, who spent 35 years working for the Ministry of Defence developing real weapons, was arrested, locked up and had his fingerprints and DNA sample taken after the kit was discovered in his overnight bag by police. The former Royal Engineer was preparing to board a Paris-bound train at Waterloo when an X-ray machine alarm was triggered by the toolkit. He was hauled from the station, placed in a cage in a van and taken to a police station for questioning. Four hours later he was released and cautioned"

Britain: What about the human rights of the general public? "A man who has been barred from every pub in his village after behaving aggressively towards staff at his local is being backed by a leading civil liberties group. Liberty is contending that the ban infringes the man's human rights."

Primitive Saudis: "A Saudi mother has issued an appeal from prison for King Abdullah to reunite her with her husband after a court divorced the couple against their will. Fatima al-Timani was jailed in July with her two children, a girl of 2 called Nuha and a boy, Sulaiman, who has just turned 1. The court has said that she could be freed if she returns to her estranged family, who engineered the annulment of her marriage last year because they despised her husband, Mansour. But Ms al-Timani, 34, insisted: "I'm leaving this place on one condition only - that I go back to my husband." ... The case has riveted the usually reserved Saudi media, which have been sympathetic to the couple who wed for love more than four years ago in a country where most marriages are arranged. The couple had been married for more than three years and already had Nuha when two of Fatima's half-brothers demanded that they divorce on the grounds of "tribal incompatibility" and took the case to court."

Good news for bloggers: "The California Supreme Court held today that "plaintiffs who contend they were defamed in an Internet posting may only seek recovery from the original source of the statement." In other words, Web publishers currently have absolute immunity for the republication of allegedly defamatory statements originally made by others. The implications of this ruling are significant, and are, in my view, a net positive for free speech in this country."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

**************************

"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



22 November, 2006

Politicians Pursue Power, Not Truth or Understanding

Comment by economist Don Boudreaux:

Arnold Kling points out that Jim Webb's op-ed in today's Wall Street Journal lacks any real suggestions for how to solve the problem that Webb allegedly believes now haunts America. If this lack of specifics means a lack of action by government, I'd be pleased. But I suspect that there are lots of harmful interventions on the horizon. Greg Mankiw quite wisely notes that many of the favored policies now promoted by the American left -- raising the minimum-wage, protectionism, labor cartelization, and Wal-Mart bashing -- are poor policy tools to address the problems the left frets over. Here's a letter that I sent today to the Wall Street Journal in response to Webb's huffing and puffing:

Jim Webb's fear-mongering essay about income inequality obviously is meant to justify higher taxes on "the rich," boondoggle programs for "working Americans," and protectionism for special-interest groups posing as victims of nefarious foreign merchants ("American Workers Have a Chance to Be Heard," Nov. 15). And like all such efforts, Webb's is a series of illogical arguments and half-truths.

For example, he says that "manufacturing jobs are disappearing." True. Contrary to his suggestion, though, this fact is unrelated to recent trends in globalization, corporate governance, or tax policy. Manufacturing jobs as a percentage of the U.S. work force peaked in 1945 and have declined steadily ever since - even though manufacturing output continues to rise. Today this output is at an all-time high.

I understand that politicians pursue power rather than truth. Still, it's galling to read such concentrated deceitfulness.


Source

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ELSEWHERE

A nice summary of Leftist hate from a Leftist: "What Democrats need to do is spend the next two years crushing their opponents like bugs."

Colonialism was beneficial: "James Feyrer and Bruce Sacerdote, both of Dartmouth College, consider the effect of a particular aspect of history-the length of European colonization-on the current standard of living of a group of 80 tiny, isolated islands that have not previously been used in cross-country comparisons. Their question: Are the islands that experienced European colonization for a longer period of time richer today? ... Feyrer and Sacedote's key findings are that the longer one of the islands spent as a colony, the higher its present-day living standards and the lower its infant mortality rate. Each additional century of European colonization is associated with a 40 percent boost in income today and a reduction in infant mortality of 2.6 deaths per 1,000 births."

Strange silence about the voting-machine "conspiracy": "Like claims the U.S. was responsible for 9/11 and Republicans were fixing gas prices, the media promoted the left-wing electronic vote-rigging conspiracy. Now that the votes have been cast and counted, Republicans lost, and the silence of the national media has been deafening. The idea was that somehow the company Diebold had programmed the machines to let Republicans win. The theory, perpetuated by left-wingers posting on Daily Kos and The Huffington Post and Bev Harris' book, "Black Box Voting," was embraced by all three broadcast networks, as well as CNN and MSNBC. Following Sen. John Kerry's (D-Mass.) defeat in 2004, MSNBC's Keith Olbermann ignored statements by the candidate's own Ohio attorney about the lack of evidence of "confirmed fraud." Instead, Olbermann ranted for days about fraud causing the Kerry defeat during his show "Countdown with Keith Olbermann."

Globalization fosters peace: "Critics of globalization forget that free trade fosters prosperity and know almost nothing about its most important benefit-its tendency to prevent war. Quantitative studies have shown that trade fosters peace both directly, by reducing the risk of military conflict, and indirectly, by promoting prosperity and democracy."

Democrat myths about the army: "Rep. Charlie Rangel wants to reimpose the draft, partly "as a means of spreading military obligations more equitably," according to the Wash Post. Do you think he means that the poorest Americans should start pulling their weight? This report from the Heritage Foundation recently crossed my desk: Our review of Pentagon enlistee data shows that the only group that is lowering its participation in the military is the poor. The percentage of recruits from the poorest American neighborhoods (with one-fifth of the U.S. population) declined from 18 percent in 1999 to 14.6 percent in 2003, 14.1 percent in 2004, and 13.7 percent in 2005.



Death for scum: "A general has affirmed the death sentence for a US Army sergeant convicted of murdering two fellow soldiers in a grenade attack in Kuwait at the outset of the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, the army said today. Sergeant Hasan Akbar, 35, is the first US soldier to face the death penalty for killing another soldier since the end of the Vietnam War. Lieutenant General John Vines, commander of the 18th Airborne Corps, acted on Friday to affirm the death sentence against Akbar, which was handed down on April 28, 2005, after the unanimous vote of a military court, the army said. "The case now goes to the Army Court of Criminal Appeals under an automatic appeal," it said. Akbar rolled grenades into three tents at Camp Pennsylvania in the northern Kuwait desert on March 22, 2003 as soldiers slept. The attack, on the night before the unit was to have crossed into Iraq, killed Captain Christopher Seifert, 27, and Air Force Major Gregory Stone, 40, and wounded 14 other soldiers. Defence attorneys argued that Akbar, a Muslim convert, was mentally ill at the time of the attack."

Muslim Britain: "Rival groups of Muslim inmates have created a potentially explosive situation over the interpretation of the Koran in Britain's biggest jail, prison watchdogs said yesterday. Deep divisions among Muslims in Wandsworth jail developed after the appointment of an imam with particular views of the Koran's teachings. Some Muslim inmates at the jail in southwest London are also pressurising fellow Muslim prisoners to adopt more militant beliefs and lifestyle. The disclosures will fuel fears that attempts are being made to radicalise young Muslims held in jails in England and Wales."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

**************************

"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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21 November, 2006

SOME IN THE MEDIA SEEM FREAKED BY WHAT THEY HAVE DONE

Like the sorcerer's apprentice, some in the media are desperately trying to control the destruction wrought by the product of their labors. The 527 Media - those politically-activist media who present campaign ads as news -- worked long and hard to convince the nation that the Democrats weren't wild-eyed liberals. The Democratic congressional candidates including their leaders were, according to the media script, trustworthy moderates. But the Dems have read too much into the election results and while they've hit the ground running, their media pals are icing their path hoping to slow them down (and in the case of Jack Murtha, stumble)....

How much the media are owed - really, how much they can control the Dems - is being measured this week on Jack Murtha and his stance on Iraq.... The Washington Post, having achieved the defeats of George Allen and Michael Steele, endorsed on Tuesday long-time Maryland Cong. Steny Hoyer for the majority leader's post. In its endorsement, it voiced opinions about Hoyer's opponent, Jack Murtha, that were startling for their vehemence: "Mr. Murtha's candidacy is troubling for several reasons, beginning with his position on the war in Iraq...his descriptions of the stakes there have been completely unrealistic, and his solutions irresponsible." The Post's editorial comes soon after Sen. Carl Levin, incoming Armed Services Committee Chairman, said that Democrats wanted to pressure the White House into beginning to withdraw American troops in four to six months. The Post condemnation of Murtha is a sign of media panic. They know that if the Democrats unite around the Murtha policy of cutting and running, they may damage themselves significantly for the 2008 presidential race.

More here

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EUROBUNGLING

Like some overblown African dictatorship, the EU keeps confusing grandiose ego projects with sensible expenditures on defense; as a result of which Europe and Britain look increasingly vulnerable and defenseless. On the day after Milton Friedman's passing it is a reminder of the bizarre and self-destructive nature of politicized decision-making-- because that's the trouble, of course: Everything in the EU is political, and all large military projects are pork-barreled to ensure that enough bacon fat goes to France, Italy, Germany and Britain itself. It works about as well as nationalized health care.

Britain's MOD spent almost twice as much money for a German anti-artillery radar than a US version would have cost. More than five hundred million dollars were wasted on a failed effort to produce European anti-tank missiles, which then had to be purchased from the US anyway. An armored vehicle had to be dumped after spending about 75 million dollars because it was too big to go into Hercules transport planes.

The Defense Ministry has ordered 232 Eurofighters at more than 90 million dollars each for "an acknowledged Cold War relic." The Eurofighter can't perform ground support or other bombing missions, but the terrorists don't have fighter jets to knock out.

To top it all off, Europe has embarked an a completely unnecessary doubling of the US GPS system for navigation; since the GPS system is free to users all over the world, it's like building a second world-wide web

More here

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ELSEWHERE

Iraqis fighting terrorists: "While the world’s attention has been focused on Baghdad’s slide into sectarian warfare, something remarkable has been happening in Ramadi, a city of 400,000 inhabitants that al-Qaeda and its Iraqi allies have controlled since mid-2004 and would like to make the capital of their cherished Islamic caliphate. A power struggle has erupted: al-Qaeda’s reign of terror is being challenged. Sheikh Sittar and many of his fellow tribal leaders have cast their lot with the once-reviled US military. They are persuading hundreds of their followers to sign up for the previously defunct Iraqi police. American troops are moving into a city that was, until recently, a virtual no-go area. A battle is raging for the allegiance of Ramadi’s battered and terrified citizens and the outcome could have far-reaching consequences. Ramadi has been the insurgency’s stronghold for the past two years. It is the conduit for weapons and foreign fighters arriving from Syria and Saudi Arabia. To reclaim it would deal a severe blow to the insurgency throughout the Sunni triangle and counter mounting criticism of the war back in America.

Hewitt on judges: "Today, soon-to-be Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told the Federalist Society that if "Democrats want our cooperation, they'll give the president's judicial nominees an up-or-down vote." The AP account terms this a "veiled threat," even though there is no "veil' in McConnell's statement. The forthright priority he is giving the repair of Constitutional process in the nomination and consideration of federal judicial nominations is in fact consistent with his much longer discussion of the importance of the judicial nominations' issue with me from Wednesday's program, and very similar to the opinions aired by Senator Coburn -a Judiciary Committee member-- on yesterday's broadcast from D.C., opinions widely shared by most Republican senators and most center-right activists and originalists."

Nicaragua plans big dig to rival Panama Canal: "The southern part of Ometepe Island is barely touched by modernity. On the single dirt road that flanks Lake Nicaragua, pigs are left undisturbed to cool off in puddles. But if planners in the nation's capital, Managua, have their way, people here will bear witness to the day's most advanced technology, with boats the length of five soccer fields plodding from the Atlantic to the Pacific, passing Ometepe along the way. Amid news that the Panama Canal will be expanded to accommodate the growing size and number of ships traversing the globe, Nicaragua has announced its own plan for an interoceanic canal, which planners say would be the world's largest."

In defense of "Borat": "Critics say 'Borat' is anti-American. In fact, the U.S. government could not begin to match Borat's contribution to the image of the United States abroad if it increased the budget of the under secretary for public diplomacy and public affairs by a factor of 10. The most important thing the movie has done for America is to show that it is a society capable of laughing at itself."

Chris Brand has just done a new lot of posts on his usual themes of race, IQ and political correctness -- with particular emphasis on the British scene.

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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20 November, 2006

TWO KINDS OF STEREOTYPING

Now and then people will characterize groups in various ways. Some of this is clearly prejudice-as when one ascribes to blacks, whites, women, those from Poland, or Latin Americans certain moral attributes which some of those from these groups may exhibit but which are certainly not innate to all members of the group. Thinking that all Mexicans are lazy or that Germans are by nature methodical or, again, that Americans are phlegmatic would be such prejudice. These are traits of individuals and while some in these groups may have them, many clearly do not. One needs to see if the ascription is justified instead of making it just because someone is a member of the group. One is, to put it somewhat differently, not morally good or bad because one is born black or Australian or Chinese. One is good or bad as a result of one's own judgments and actions.

But sometimes it makes good sense to ascribe traits to people in light of their membership in certain groups. This is so when they belong to the group as a matter of their own choice. If someone, as an adult, joins the Mafia or the Nazi Party, or becomes a Roman Catholic or a Muslim, and if it turns out that such membership amounts, in part, to agreeing to think and act in certain ways, then it makes perfectly good sense to expect members to favor the thinking and acting that goes with membership in these groups. And if such thinking and acting turns out to be morally or politically objectionable, holding such members responsible for what they have freely agreed to accept in terms of thinking and acting is justified.

Even if one is born into a religion or political party-as most of us are-we aren't forced to remain members in near-free countries but in time freely accept our membership, even if only by acquiescence. If my parents are Nazis or members of the Ku Klux Klan and they inculcate their vile ideology in me, if after I reach the age of reason I remain a member, this can certainly be held against me.

More here

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ELSEWHERE

Today's postings on AUSTRALIAN POLITICS should be of considerable interest to most readers of this blog -- with reports of both Leftist and Musim mayhem.

Europe summarized "In an article in the German daily WELT Jeffrey Gedmin, Director at the Aspen Institute Berlin, writes: " (...) When some Europeans say they like Americans, they tend to mean those Americans who seem most like European Social Democrats, and even then they airbrush out inconvenient details like the fact that Bill Clinton favoured the death penalty, that Hillary voted for the Iraq war, or that John F. Kennedy, that suave and promiscuous East coast liberal was also a staunch anti-communist, who frequently quoted from the bible. George W. Bush is the full package of everything that makes Europe squirm. He is anti-elitism. He's religion. He's morality and muscle. He's patriotism and self-confidence. He is very un-European."

New York oil price slumps: "The price of crude oil in New York sank overnight beneath $US55 per barrel, striking a level last seen in June 2005 amid concerns over the full implementation of a recent cut in OPEC oil output. New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in December, plunged $US54.86 per barrel in electronic trade. That marked the lowest point since June 14, 2005 before Hurricane Katrina had devastated US Gulf Coast energy facilities and sent crude futures to then-record levels. The contract later stood at $US55.50 in pit trading, marking a fall of 76 cents."

Calls for Israel to control Gaza borders: "A member of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's cabinet called on Saturday for Israel to recapture a part of Gaza evacuated a year ago and dismissed moderate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas as "irrelevant." Avigdor Lieberman, an Israeli rightist recently named minister of strategic affairs, told Israel Radio "we have to take back control of the Rafah crossing and the Philadelphi corridor", zones along the Gaza border with Egypt. Israel accuses the Palestinians of smuggling in tonnes of ammunition across from Egypt, and blames this for a recent spate of rocket fire at southern Israeli towns that killed an Israeli woman on Wednesday and seriously wounded a guard. Gunmen have stepped up rocket fire at Israel after the deaths of 19 civilians in a Nov. 8 Israeli artillery shelling on the town of Beit Hanoun. Israel apologised but said it was in response to Gaza rocket fire."

Burqa ban splits Holland: "The Dutch government's decision to ban the burqa in public places on security grounds has not only outraged Muslim groups but also prompted accusations of political opportunism from opposition figures. The move to outlaw "face-covering clothing - including the burqa" was announced last Friday by Rita Verdonk, the hardline immigration minister, five days before a general election. She said it was in the interests of "public order" and the "protection of citizens".

New Trident to go ahead: "The [British] government will signal within the next two to three weeks that it wants to continue with the submarine-based Trident missile system as the UK's nuclear deterrent, according to Whitehall sources, writes Michael Smith. Tony Blair has promised MPs a full debate on the issue and reportedly told a cabinet meeting last week that he wants the debate to begin quickly "because a decision needs to be made". The government has promised to launch the debate with a white paper outlining options, but defence sources said the key decisions have in effect "been made".

Can they do it? "The midterm elections that ended GOP control of both House and Senate turned on two overriding themes: the war in Iraq and corruption in Congress. Now, beginning with leadership elections this week, both parties are out to show voters they got the message. For Democrats, united in a keen desire not to slip back into the minority in 2008, a first step is the promise of a new style of leadership on Capitol Hill: open, bipartisan, and above reproach -- and an agenda anchored in the needs of the average American family. 'Voters rejected the Bush agenda, but they haven't yet embraced us,' said Sen. Charles Schumer of New York, who was elevated Tuesday to No. 3 in the Democratic leadership after chairing the party's senatorial campaign committee to a victory few of his colleagues believed would happen. 'What we have here could vanish if we don't do the job.'"

MA: Imams arrested in alleged visa scheme: "Federal immigration agents arrested imams from two Boston-area mosques yesterday on charges they were involved in a scheme that provided religious worker visas to immigrants who used them to enter the United States and work instead as gas station attendants, truck drivers, and factory laborers. Hafiz Abdul Hannan, imam, or leader, of the Islamic Society of Greater Lowell in Chelmsford, and Muhammed Masood, imam of the Islamic Center of New England in Sharon, were among 33 people taken into custody nationwide after a multi-year investigation led by agents in Boston and New York, said Paula Grenier, a spokeswoman for US Immigration and Customs Enforcement."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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19 November, 2006

DOES THIS REMIND YOU OF ANYBODY?

The paranoid person always takes himself seriously. It is rarely the case that such a person presents to a psychiatrist seeking help or complaining about their psychological projections, no matter how bizarre or out of touch with reality they may be. Because for the paranoid individual, his paranoia and the accompanying projections explain so much about his life and situation.

* Is he poor? Someone must have robbed him of what he is entitled to!
* Is he angry and feel hatred? Then the object of his hatred magically becomes the one who hates...him!
* Is his genius not recognized? He must have powerful enemies that prevent him from achieving the success he knows should be his.
* Has he made mistakes in his life? Someone has tricked him into acting a certain way.

The above mental gymnastics allow the paranoid person to external blame and avoid responsibility for his situation in life, as well as his own feelings. It is always someone else's fault and not his. It is always someone else who has the objectional feelings, and he is always the victim of it.

In addition to externalizing blame for one's own pitiful situation in life, there is yet another advantage to paranoia and projection: often, a creative distortion of reality can reliably pump up one's own self-esteem. You are righteous, persecuting the true racists and you, yourself, are incapable of any racist thoughts or emotions. Sometimes, it pumps it that self-esteem up at the expense of a great deal of fear; but nevertheless, it is comforting to know that someone appreciates your genius or the threat you represent. Clearly if the CIA, FBI, aliens, Jews , POTUS, Republicans [fill in your favorite bogeyman here] are out to get you, you must be special and unique.

In short, paranoia and its little brother projection organize and distort reality in a way that makes it palatable; and, at the same time help the user to avoid recognizing some unpleasant truths about himself.

Psychological projection, which is often not as bizarre as full-blown paranoia, is a particularly good way of doing this, because by projecting one's own feelings onto someone else, you can make yourself appear particularly virtuous.

More here

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Indian alliance firms up

The US Senate has overwhelmingly approved Washington's nuclear deal with New Delhi, just hours after a telephone conversation between President George W.Bush and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Under the agreement, India, a non-signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, will be allowed access to long-denied civilian nuclear technology in return for placing its atomic reactors under global safeguards. Yesterday's go-ahead for the deal seals India's historic shift towards closer ties with the West.

US Senate support for legislation implementing civilian nuclear energy co-operation between the two countries had been stalled, and New Delhi feared the deal could collapse following the Democrats' congressional election victories. But with Mr Bush backing the legislation -- which he affirmed when he spoke to Dr Singh -- it passed the Senate by a majority of 85-12 after a debate lasting 11 hours. The delight among Indian officials yesterday appeared almost boundless.

"This is great news indeed," one senior official said. "We've had some very, very anxious moments on this over the past few months, and after last week's results in the US we were worried. But the result now could not be better. This is a great day for India and for the US."

The deal with Washington represents much more than civilian nuclear energy co-operation. It is emblematic of the shift by India, the biggest and most powerful country in South Asia, towards alliance with the West, after decades of putative non-alignment by New Delhi. This is a giant step for India, and a bold move by the Congress-led coalition Government of Dr Singh, who has had to face down domestic critics from powerful left-wing parties to conclude the deal with Washington.

More here

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ELSEWHERE



Iranian fanatic funds British university: "Durham university is in the process of opening a new centre for Shii Studies with financial support from Mesbah Yazdi. An Ayotllah whose statement "If anyone insults the Islamic sanctities, Islam has permitted for his blood to be spilled, no court needed either" made headline news in Iran, is funding a British university!"

Israelis shoot back: "Israeli troops killed a Palestinian man and wounded 30 others when they opened fire during an arrest raid in the West Bank town of Qalqilya overnight, residents and the army said. Local hospital staff said the dead man was aged 18. Several people who threw firebombs and stones during clashes with troops were in critical condition. Local residents said the soldiers were attempting to arrest a militant from the governing Islamist group Hamas. An Israeli army spokesman said troops had fired at a group of some 200 protesters who hurled rocks and Molotov cocktails at troops in the central West Bank town. He declined to give details of the raid but said live ammunition had been fired at the troops. Israeli forces often enter Palestinian towns and villages in the occupied West Bank to arrest militants."

U.S. prices FALL: "Dresses and trousers are already on sale in department stores. And gasoline prices, after their recent spike, are back down to where they were about a year ago. Falling prices on many goods are reining in the nation's inflation rate. Thursday, in an economic report that cheered just about everyone, the government reported that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) in October fell 0.5 percent. Even taking out volatile energy and food prices, inflation barely registered, rising only 0.1 percent.... The inflation numbers are also improving on a year-over-year basis. Compared with last October, prices are up 2.7 percent, a rate that is still higher than the Fed would like to see but a decline from prior months. "The numbers are [going] in the right direction," says Professor Owen. The improvement in the CPI follows a similar report on Tuesday for the Producer Price Index, a measure of inflation for businesses, which fell 1.6 percent. Taking out food and energy, prices dropped 0.9 percent."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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18 November, 2006

IN MEMORIAM: MILTON FRIEDMAN

Milton Friedman, one of the most influential economists of the past century and winner of a 1976 Nobel Prize, died today of heart failure at a San Francisco-area hospital, aged 94. Friedman preached free enterprise in the face of government regulation and advocated monetary policy that called for steady growth in money supply. How his ideas were implemented by governments and central banks and how Friedman helped popularise them made him perhaps the world's best-known economist, Gary Becker, who won the 1992 Nobel Prize for economics, said today. "If you had to ask people across the world to name an economist, by far his name would be the most common,'' Becker said. "He could express the most complicated economic ideas in the most simple language.''

Brooklyn-born Friedman's ideas played a pivotal role in informing the governing philosophies of world leaders like former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and former US President Ronald Reagan. "Milton Friedman revived the economics of liberty, when it had been all but forgotten. He was an intellectual freedom fighter. Never was there a less dismal practitioner of 'the dismal science' (economics),'' Thatcher said in a statement.

"I am deeply saddened at the passing of Milton Friedman,'' former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said. "He had been a fixture in my life both professionally and personally for a half century. My world will not be the same.'' St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President William Poole, another noted monetarist, said much of modern central bank thinking stemmed from Friedman's work. Poole said Friedman's most important contribution was to bring theoretical economic thinking to bear on a range of public policy issues.

Friedman's ideas on public policy were seized by Reagan, who shared Friedman's interest in low taxes and less regulation, said Martin Anderson, a Hoover Institution fellow and former domestic and economic policy adviser to Reagan. "You look at what Reagan did, it was what Milton had been advocating for a long time,'' Anderson said. "What Milton did was to confirm what he (Reagan) thought and make it more confident, and that became 'Reaganomics.'''

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who recruited Friedman as an adviser after becoming governor, said in a statement, "`When I was first exposed to his powerful writings about money, free markets and individual freedom, it was like getting hit by a thunderbolt. "I wound up giving copies of his books and 'Free to Choose' videos to hundreds of my friends and acquaintances.''

More here

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ELSEWHERE

More government waste: "Hundreds of modular homes purchased by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for people left homeless by hurricanes Katrina and Rita were damaged beyond repair while in storage because they were not properly protected, according to a government report. Units worth a total ranging from $3 million to $4 million will have to be written off, Homeland Security Inspector General Richard L. Skinner writes in a report to FEMA Director R. David Paulison. Most of the homes were at an Army depot in Texarkana, Texas, where intense heat and rain had destroyed tarps covering the units. Cardboard containers holding toilets and fittings had deteriorated in the weather and caused the frames and wood of some components to warp, Skinner wrote".

AZ: Maverick dairyman fights lobbyists, lawmakers: "Long before he discovered a way to sell milk for far less than his competitors, before he enraged the multibillon-dollar dairy industry so much that Congress passed a law to stop him, Hein Hettinga clipped cow hooves for a living. It was menial work. But it put him on a career path that, in time, would lead him to found Yuma-based Sarah Farms, one of the largest and most innovative private dairy operations in the country. Now, 12 years after building his dairy business into a proverbial cash cow, Hettinga finds himself waging war against big-dairy lobbyists, high-profile lawmakers and the federal government."

Woman kicked off flight for breast-feeding baby: "A woman has complained that she was kicked off an airplane about to leave Burlington airport because she was breast-feeding her baby. A complaint against two airlines was filed with the Vermont Human Rights Commission, although Executive Director Robert Appel said he was barred by state law from confirming the complaint. He did say state law allows a mother to breast-feed in public. Elizabeth Boepple, a lawyer hired by 27-year-old mother Emily Gillette, confirmed that Gillette filed the complaint late last week against Delta Air Lines and Freedom Airlines. Freedom was operating the Delta commuter flight between Burlington and New York City. A Freedom spokesman said Gillette was asked to leave the flight after she declined a flight attendant's offer of a blanket."

Pathetic Canadian public broadcaster: The CBC’s television news coverage of the United States is consistently marked by emotional criticism, rather than a rational consideration of US policy based on Canadian national interests, according to The Canadian "Garrison Mentality" and Anti-Americanism at the CBC released today by The Fraser Institute. This anti-American bias at the CBC is the consequence of a “garrison mentality” that has systematically informed the broadcaster’s coverage of the US. Garrison mentality was a term coined by Canadian literary critic, Northrop Frye. He used it to describe a uniquely Canadian tendency reflected in our early literature, a tendency, as he put it, to “huddle together, stiffening our meager cultural defenses and projecting all our hostilities outward.” “The anti-Americanism of the CBC, we argue, is a faithful reflection of the garrison mentality evoked by Frye,” said Professor Barry Cooper, co-author of the paper ... In total there were 2,383 statements inside the 225 stories that referred to America or the United States on CBC in 2002. As with most news coverage, the largest number of statements was neutral; they constituted 49.1 percent of the attention. Thirty-four percent of the attention to America or the United States was negative, over double the 15.4 percent positive descriptors. Only 1.6 percent of the statements were considered ambiguous.

No cut and run? "The election of Rep. Steny Hoyer, a Democrat of Maryland, as House majority leader staves off, at least for the moment, the threat of a Democratic Congress cutting funding for the war in Iraq. Mr. Hoyer, who has signed three leadership letters to President Bush calling for a phased withdrawal of troops from Iraq, beat out Rep. John Murtha of Pennsylvania, who wants to set a date for an American exit and send the troops elsewhere in the Middle East. Last night, both the Democrats and the founder of the Democratic Leadership Council, Al From, said the Appropriations Committee would not cut funding for American forces, as the party did in 1974 to help end the Vietnam War.

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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17 November, 2006

'Blue Dog' Democrats Seek Larger Role

For a dozen years, the Democratic conservatives known as Blue Dogs have been baying at the moon, ignored by Republicans and tolerated by their more liberal Democratic colleagues. Now, these House lawmakers say that is about to change.

Republicans "did not lose their seats to liberal Democrats" in last weeks elections, said Rep. Mike Ross, D-Ark. "Republicans lost their seats to Blue Dog Democrats." "We'll have a lot to say about what passes and what doesn't" when the 110th Congress convenes in January with Democrats in control for the first time in 12 years, said Ross, new communications director for the caucus.

With the addition of nine newly elected freshmen, the Blue Dogs claim 44 members, nearly 20 percent of the incoming Democratic majority. They will be led by Rep. Allen Boyd, D-Fla., and include Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., in line to become the next Agriculture Committee chairman.

The Blue Dogs were formed in 1994 after Republicans swept the long-entrenched Democrats from power. They tend to be social conservatives on such issues as abortion. But their big issue is fiscal discipline - balancing the budget and reducing the federal debt.

More here

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Brookes News Update

Democrats, taxes and the US economy : Now that the Democrats have won both houses I think we can count on the leftwing Media Party to start reporting on the Bush boom as soon as it figures out a way to credit the Dems for the economic recovery and full employment
Storm clouds gather over the Australian economy as the money supply increases: Australia has been running a reckless monetary policy for about 10 years. From March 1996, when Howard once his first election, to August this year bank deposits rose by 133 per cent and M1 by 105 per cent. Since October last year bank deposits rose by 9 per cent and M1 by 8 per cent. Monetary figures like these can only bring grief
Boris, Bill and Monica: trouble ahead for Hillary?: Did the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service use Bill Clintons affair with Monica Lewinsky to extort from him billions of dollars from American taxpayers to save the Russian economy from financial collapse? If so, will this destroy Hillarys presidential ambitions?
Rupert Murdoch just doesnt get the message: Murdoch, the man who complained about the emergence of neo-socialism, is cosying up to Hillary Clinton a politician that embodies those things he affects to despise
Why the Democrats accept lies : The Modern Liberal marches down the streets of San Francisco cheering on Hezbollah not because theyre rationally, morally and intellectually thought through the terrorist groups motives and actions but simply because it is an opportunity to attack the Jews
Christian socialism v economic reality: Christian socialists are just as ignorant as other secular socialists when it comes to the market place and capitalism. To read this lot you would think the world was on the verge of destruction and that the exploited masses are clothed in rags
Malcolm Fraser's ignorance and the Soviet collapse: Malcolm Fraser has become a ridiculous figure, strutting about the public arena, parading intellectual pretensions that he sadly mistakes for serious thought, becoming the despair of thoughtful and informed opinion, the but of jokes of the malicious and a source of propaganda for the ignorant and self-serving

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ELSEWHERE

Doug Ross has a very good fisking of the lunatic Democrat strategy for "Energy independence"

Islamic fruitcake works in British immigration office: "A senior member of the Islamist group Hizb ut- Tahrir is working as a computer technician at the Home Office, despite calls by Tony Blair for the group to be banned. The activist, named as Abid Javaid, is said to be an official at the Immigration and Nationality Directorate in Croydon, one of the department's most sensitive branches. Shortly after the July 7 bombing attacks, the Prime Minister included the group in a list of those he planned to proscribe, but it has not been among those banned. An investigation by the BBC Two programme Newsnight also claimed that the group preached hatred to young men using staged videos of persecution of Muslims. Newsnight said that Hizb ut-Tahrir targeted disaffected youngsters, particularly the unemployed and members of gangs in South London, and encouraged them to attack non-believers - a claim denied by the group's spokesman, Abdul Wahid, on the programme... The Home Office refused to confirm whether Mr Javaid worked at the Immigration and Nationality Directorate but added: "All Home Office civil servants are expected to abide by Home Office rules governing their conduct and are subject to the Civil Service Code."

Arafat's stolen billions: "Two years after Arafat's funeral, an international scavenger hunt continues for the revolutionary leader's far-flung riches. A motley assortment of investigators ranging from Israel's security establishment to the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, which now rules in Ramallah, maintain an ongoing interest in every lost stash. "The only man who knows the whole story is dead," says a senior Israeli military intelligence official who agreed to answer questions on condition of anonymity. "But the deeper you go into it, the more it stinks."

Al Qaeda "nothing to do" with Iraq? "Al Qaeda recently issued a statement that it has 12,000 fighters in Iraq. If we were not accomplishing important strategic goals there, why would al Qaeda be deploying so much of its resources to Iraq? It would be nice to know everything, like the folks at the Times, Seymour Hersh, Bill Maher, Michael Moore and the long list of left-biased journalists and academics. Unfortunately, they are unschooled bufoons with respect to this question, and their views are, well, dumb."

Nuke attack on Britain: "British intelligence officials believe that al-Qaida is determined to attack the UK with a nuclear weapon, it emerged yesterday. The announcement, from an officially organised Foreign Office counter-terrorism briefing for the media, was the latest in a series of bleak assessments by senior officials and ministers about the terrorist threat facing Britain. UK officials have detected "an awful lot of chatter" on jihadi websites expressing the desire to acquire chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear weapons. Asked whether there was any doubt that al-Qaida was trying to gain the technology to attack the west, including the UK, with a nuclear weapon, a senior Foreign Office counter-terrorism official said: "No doubt at all."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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16 November, 2006

THE LYING JIMMY CARTER -- and his crosseyed hatred of Israel

Excerpt from a review of Carter's latest book

But it is when he gets to the 2003 Road Map that Carter is at his most egregious. Carter states the Palestinians "accepted the road map in its entirety" (page 159), that Palestinian leaders had "accepted all provisions of the Quartet's Roadmap for Peace" (page 173), that there was "no doubt" Abbas was "dedicated" to a "peace agreement in accordance with the Roadmap" (page 173), and that Abbas "has publicly endorsed [the Road Map] without equivocation" (page 187). He attributes the failure of the Road Map to Israeli "caveats." Surely Carter is aware that the Palestinians had, under Phase I of the Road Map, an immediate obligation-not contingent on any Israeli action-to begin

"sustained, targeted, and effective operations aimed at confronting all those engaged in terror and dismantlement of terrorist capabilities and infrastructure."

And surely Carter is aware that Abbas bragged to the Palestinian Legislative Council on September 6, 2003 that he had in fact refused to carry out that obligation, and had repeatedly ignored American and Israeli entreaties to meet the Palestinian obligation he had accepted "without reservation." Abbas' speech can easily be retrieved using Google, but it is nowhere mentioned in Carter's book.

And finally, Carter is obviously aware that in August 2005, notwithstanding the Palestinian failure, Israel exceeded its own Phase I obligations-which required only that Israel "dismantle settlement outposts erected since March 2001" and freeze settlement activity-by uprooting all 21 of its longstanding settlements in Gaza (and four more in the West Bank) in their entirety, in order to give the Palestinians a chance to demonstrate their readiness to "live side by side in peace and security" and resume the Road Map.

For this, Israel reaped more than 1,000 rockets from Gaza since August 2005, and tunnels and attacks across an international border, from an area in which no Jews remained. This, too, is ignored in Carter's book. He complains instead that Gaza has its own "separation barrier" that can be "penetrated only by Israeli-controlled checkpoints" (the same way that the international border of most other countries of the world can "only" be "penetrated").

Carter's discussion of the Israeli West Bank security barrier-built as a last resort against years of mass murder bombers targeting Israeli civilians, and in the face of a complete and continuous Palestinian refusal to meet its Phase I Road Map obligation-is never other than pejorative. He uses various terms-the "segregation wall," the "imprisonment wall," the "encircling barrier . . . imposing a system of . . . apartheid," the "huge dividing wall"-that are simply Palestinian talking points, not an attempt at serious discussion. He makes no effort to describe the conditions that produced the barrier, and does not even fairly state the Israeli position regarding it.

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ELSEWHERE

GWB's new Iraq adviser has a track record of failure: "As chief of the Central Intelligence Agency's Soviet desk during the early 1980s, Gates shared the consensus academic view that the Soviet economy was strong and stable. A prosperous Russia, he reckoned, would respond rationally to management by carrot and stick. Fortunately for the United States, then-CIA director William Casey recruited outsiders such as journalist Herbert E Meyer, and listened to them rather than to Gates... Baker, Gates and their Iraq Study Group will report to President Bush next week. Judging from press leaks and the public record, they will propose a ghastly misevaluation of Iran, identical in character to their misevaluation of the Soviet Union a generation ago. As widely reported, they will propose to "engage Iran"; but for what object should Iran be engaged? .... In other words, the Bush administration's threats against Tehran are not a response to Iran's nuclear ambitions, but rather the cause of Iran's nuclear ambitions, according to the sages of the Carter and the Bush Sr administrations. It is a peculiarly self-referential argument, but not a new one, for that is just how the "realists" viewed the Soviet Union in 1981."

Big cars to be hit hard in London: "Drivers of gas-guzzling cars may have to pay 25 pounds a day to enter London's enlarged congestion charge zone, under plans by Ken Livingstone to tackle climate change. The Mayor of London is proposing an emissions-based congestion charge fee that will penalise drivers of the highest-polluting vehicles, including many 4x4s and luxury saloons. The new 25 pound rate would apply to cars rated in band G for vehicle excise duty, which covers those emitting more than 225g of carbon dioxide per kilometre..... Owners of fuel-inefficient cars in Richmond upon Thames, southwest London, are already facing a tripling in the cost of parking permits to œ300, under proposals put forward by the local council."

Futile attempt to make British bureaucrats work: "Being told to clear your desk used to be synonymous with dismissal. But civil servants have been asked to remove photographs, food and mobile phones in an attempt to improve efficiency. Under an edict sent to Revenue & Customs staff in tax offices, desks have to be tidy, clean and free from clutter to promote "efficient business processing". The so-called Lean programme, designed to improve productivity in government offices, has provoked a work-to-rule among 14,000 civil servants. An internal memo from a senior manager in North Wales outlining the process evoked claims from the Public and Commercial Services Union that the organisation was trying to "dehumanise" working conditions."

Arabs preserve Frenchness??? "Abdellah Fatih owns a corner shop in a Paris suburb where he says that he sells "everything from condoms to whisky, with a warm welcome for my customers". The ebullient Mr Fatih was born in Morocco and emigrated to France in the 1980s. He has come to represent a core ingredient of the French identity that President Chirac is striving to preserve - the small, local shopkeeper. Although Mr Chirac has performed many about-turns during a tortuous career, he has been steadfast in his determination to halt the decline of village stores and urban corner shops, announcing tax cuts yesterday for "micro-businesses". His campaign may at last be paying off, thanks largely to the immigrant families who are now the guardians of this particular aspect of Frenchness. After falling from 125,000 to 28,500 between 1970 and 2000, the number of grocers in France has stabilised and appears to be rising again as Moroccan, Algerian and Tunisian families invest in what Mr Fatih describes as a "business with a future".

Getting tough on terrorism? "Immigrants arrested in the United States may be held indefinitely on suspicion of terrorism and may not challenge their imprisonment in civilian courts, the Bush administration said Monday, opening a new legal front in the fight over the rights of detainees. In court documents filed with the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va., the Justice Department said a new anti-terrorism law being used to hold detainees in Guantanamo Bay also applies to foreigners captured and held in the United States."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

**************************

"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



15 November, 2006

THE AMERICA-HATERS WHO WANT AMERICA TO LOSE

TNR's Lawrence Kaplan put forth a wonderful piece, back in fall 2003, on the willingness of the American people to endure military casualties in the pursuit of victory. It is a commonplace that this willingness is shallow in the post-Second World War era: Americans simply do not wish to suffer, and do not have the senses of patriotism, pride, and honor that buffered such suffering for earlier generations. It is true, I think, that these qualities are less evident now than they were in the past. The ability of a society to see through grinding conflicts like the Philippines Insurrection or the Boer War augers well for its future, lest it lose the mere capacity to conquer, and be susceptible to humiliation by any small power with no advantage save mental fortitude. It is indeed difficult to imagine now the methods that transformed the Philippines for us, and South Africa for the British, from bitter foe to steadfast friend being applied in Iraq. Would that they were. But patriotism, pride, and honor are nonetheless still present in the American character. It is the American political class that lacks them in corresponding measure.

Kaplan's essay, reprinted here, invokes two military debacles of the recent past: Beirut in 1983, and Mogadishu in 1993. Each featured a shocking toll of Americans killed in spectacular fashion, and each saw a swift American withdrawal thereafter. The respective retreats were justified by the political leadership on the grounds that the American people had thereby turned against the mission. Kaplan demolishes this rationale, noting that in each case, American popular support for decisive action rose in the aftermath of the respective tragedies, collapsing only after the political leadership decided to withdraw. This pattern is shown to hold true even against the mythos of Vietnam: Americans turned away from that cause not because of the toll in young men, but because they lost their belief in the political leadership's will or ability to win.

The present war in Iraq is no different. Americans voted against the Republicans last week in large part because of their disgust with its course and conduct. They have every right to be appalled -- the war has indeed been mismanaged from the beginning, and the political party responsible for that must pay a price. But they did not vote for defeat. The flameout of antiwar left-wing darling Ned Lamont in solidly blue Connecticut is evidence enough for that. Americans wanted Republicans out of power, and that is not synonymous with -- nor a metaphor for -- Americans out of Iraq.

Pitiably, the Democrats who benefitted from voter discontent are now empowered to misinterpret it to their own disadvantage and dishonor. Last March, I wrote on the Democratic ploy of the "Fighting Dems" -- Democratic veterans put forth to mislead voters about that party's competence and grasp in military affairs. I noted that most of these veterans did not believe in a retreat from Iraq; and I noted that the Democratic party at large surely did. Now that the Democrats have the Congress, they are showing their true colors: stories from the New York Times and Reuters tell us that they are pressing for a retreat from the battlefield under the euphemism of "redeployment." Instead of using their newfound power to seek ways to win, they will use it to seek ways to run. This is entirely unsurprising. Given the opportunity to take a bad situation and transform it into outright defeat, they are seizing it with both hands.

There is a silver lining from a partisan standpoint: Republicans, having tarnished their national-security credentials over the past six years, may burnish them by reminding Americans of the Democrats' propensity for doing far worse. But one would rather have the country do well, even at the expense of partisan advantage. The wish for wartime victory is, of course, a basic desire of the patriot of any party. It is a wish that the Democrats at large do not have, and its absence tells us all we need to know about them and theirs. A pity that those who will suffer the most will not be them, but the foreign lands and peoples whom we may shortly abandon.

Source

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ELSEWHERE

How "sweatshops" help the poor: "One of the oldest myths about capitalism is the notion that factories that offer the poor higher wages to lure them off the streets (and away from lives of begging, stealing, prostitution, or worse) or away fom back-breaking farm labor somehow impoverishes and exploits them. They are said to work in 'sweatshops' for 'subsistence wages.' That was the claim made by socialists and unionists in the early days of the industrial revolution, and it is still made today by the same category of malcontents -- usually by people who have never themselves performed manual labor and experienced breaking a sweat while working."

Can one respect the police? "It began with the Orange County ordinance authorizing police to stop teens from smoking in public places. One of my children asked me, who are these people to tell them whether they may smoke? Isn't that the job of parents? Don't the cops have kidnappers, rapists, murderers, and robbers to deal with? Is it really their role in our lives to order us to stop smoking? I really couldn't argue with the logic here. It isn't the proper task of the police to tell us whether to smoke cigarettes or dope or whatever, for that matter. The police of a free society are supposed to be peace officers, not parents or nannies or even schoolmarms. I did mention that what the police do is follow orders given to them by the politicians and bureaucrats but my kids reminded me that this is the excuse German soldiers used when they were asked about enforcing the tyrannical rules of the Nazis."

Boston voting reform? "Secretary of State William F. Galvin declared yesterday that he will seize control of the Boston Election Department because the city has repeatedly demonstrated an inability to conduct fair and smooth elections. The extraordinary move followed reports that the city ran out of ballots Tuesday at about 30 precincts in Mattapan, Dorchester, Roxbury, Jamaica Plain, and East Boston, heavily minority areas where voters turned out in droves to support Deval L. Patrick for governor. City officials acknowledged they have a policy of distributing only enough ballots for 50 percent of registered voters at each polling place and then delivering more ballots from City Hall as they are needed."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



14 November, 2006

IT WAS A GOP, NOT A CONSERVATIVE LOSS

By Jeff Jacoby

Two months after Germany's surrender in World War II, British voters dumped the Conservative prime minister who had led the nation to victory -- Winston Churchill -- and replaced him with Clement Attlee, whose Labor Party had won the election in a landslide. Embittered by his defeat, Churchill spurned King George's offer of a knighthood. "I could not accept the Order of the Garter from my sovereign," he said, "when I have received the order of the boot from his people."

Last week, American voters gave Republicans the order of the boot, stripping them of at least 29 seats in the House of Representatives and six in the Senate, and once again making Democrats the kings of Capitol Hill. It was the GOP's worst showing in decades, and since Tuesday analysts galore have been reading the entrails. It is easy to be wise after the event. But consider the judgment rendered by one of the keenest minds in American politics, who explained nearly a week *before* the election why Republican candidates were about to take a beating:

"The reason we are at this moment," former president Bill Clinton told a group of Democratic donors on Nov. 1, "is that they do not represent faithfully the Republicans and the more conservative independents in the country. Otherwise, we wouldn't be here tonight. This is a sweeping, deep, big thing." According to the nation's most popular Democrat, in other words, Republicans were about to be punished for having abandoned their Republican principles. Voters were going to demote the GOP not because its agenda had grown too conservative -- but because it hadn't been conservative enough. Exactly.

Nov. 7 was a debacle for Republicans, not conservatives. Democrats gained power in Washington, but around the country there was no shortage of evidence that the nation's tectonic shift to the right is still ongoing. For example, another seven states approved constitutional amendments barring same-sex marriage; only in Arizona was a marriage amendment narrowly defeated. The backlash against the Supreme Court's disgraceful 2005 Kelo v. New London decision continued as well, with voters in 10 states adopting new laws to protect property owners from eminent domain abuse.

The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative was at once a brilliant conservative victory and a humiliating Republican defeat. By an impressive 16-point margin, Michigan voters said no to racial and gender preferences in state employment, education, and public contracting. But the Republican Party, which had joined with Democrats, big business, and the activist left in opposing the initiative, reaped no political benefit. The GOP had jettisoned its party's colorblind creed in the hope of dampening Democratic turnout. In the end, Democrats swept the Senate and governor's races anyway, while the civil-rights initiative that Republicans should have endorsed sailed to a 58-42 win.

The next speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, is a San Francisco liberal of the first water, but many of her party's incoming freshmen campaigned as avowed conservatives. Indiana Democrat Brad Ellsworth, for example, described himself as anti abortion, pro-traditional marriage, "a hunter who supports the Second Amendment," and a "local sheriff" who would fight "to protect our kids from violence and filth on TV and the Internet." He and other "blue-dog" conservatives will be tugging the new Democratic majority to the right, while the defeat of liberal Republicans like Connecticut's Nancy Johnson and Iowa's Jim Leach means that the Republican minority in the 110th Congress will move to the right as well.

Voters were fed up with Republicans, and they had every reason to be. In 1994, the GOP swept to power on its "Contract with America" -- a principled platform of fiscal restraint, smaller government, individual responsibility, and cleaner politics. A dozen years later, the contract forgotten, the GOP had become an embarrassment -- a party of soaring federal budgets, gluttonous farm and highway bills, and earmarks from here to eternity. Instead of permanent tax relief and Social Security reform, the Republicans delivered a vast new drug entitlement and the McCain-Feingold crackdown on political expression. Worst of all, the party that had held itself out as the antidote to Democratic corruption now reeked of its own scandals. Week by week, the parade of sleazy Republicans seemed to lengthen -- Jack Abramoff, Bob Ney, Mark Foley, Duke Cunningham. Voters finally had enough. Exit polls nationwide found that it was corruption and scandal, far more than the unpopular war in Iraq, that voters had in mind on election day.

Churchill's political career didn't end in 1945. He came back from his defeat, and Republicans can come back, too. "We did not just lose our majority," one GOP representative said the other day. "We lost our way." When they're ready to find it again, re-reading the Contract with America would make a good start. As Bill Clinton could tell them, the electorate likes Republicans best when they live up to their Republican ideals.

Source

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ELSEWHERE

Who gets it; who doesn't: "I suppose that's part of the conundrum we face when the allegedly limited government party abandons its principles, when they only option is to vote for the party that has no allegiance to limited government at all. You're hoping to send a message, to remind Republicans that if they betray their principles, they'll be out of power. And you're hoping they'll rediscover those principles while they're in the minority. Unfortunately, there's always the possibility that they'll misinterpret the message, that they'll see their ouster from power as a sign that they haven't spent enough, that they haven't grown government enough. That seems to be where Bush is headed. You don't 'work with Democrats on entitlements' with an eye toward eliminating or reducing them. 'I'm willing to work with Democrats on entitlements' means you'll be negotiating only the rate at which they'll grow and multiply."

Crooked black to get top job?: "With majority status in the 'people's house' comes a share in responsibility for the security of the Republic. This is why we are so concerned about a shadow which darkens presumptive Speaker Pelosi's triumphant morning, a shadow which will only grow longer if she allows it to begin appearing prominently in the media coverage of the global war on terrorism, metastasizing into her first 'intelligence failure' even before she takes the gavel from outgoing Speaker Hastert. That is the shadow of Alcee Lamar Hastings, the reelected Democratic Representative from Florida's 23rd District."

Risk of liberal domination: "In the Chris Matthews-immoderated Florida gubernatorial debate between Republican Charlie Crist and Democrat Jim Davis, Matthews asked Davis if he is a liberal. Davis dodged. Matthews pointed out that Davis' congressional voting record is 90 percent liberal. Davis weaved. After a failed third attempt, Matthews snapped that he would take the answer as yes. It is intriguing to note that only liberal politicians and criminals make a steadfast habit of denying who they are."

Chris Brand has just done a new lot of posts on his usual themes of race, IQ and political correctness -- with particular emphasis on the British scene.

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



13 November, 2006

A GOOD SUMMARY FROM MURDOCH

Media tycoon Rupert Murdoch said he has no regrets about supporting the U.S. invasion of Iraq and asserted that the American death toll in the conflict was insignificant from a historical perspective. Speaking to reporters at a conference in Tokyo, the News Corp. chief said: "The death toll, certainly of Americans there, by the terms of any previous war are quite minute. "Of course no one likes any death toll, but the war now, at the moment, it's certainly trying to prevent a civil war and to prevent Iraqis from killing each other."

More than 2,830 American troops have been killed in Iraq since the 2003 invasion, and thousands of others have been wounded. "I believe it was right to go there," Murdoch insisted in remarks reported by the Times of India. "I believe that certainly the execution that has followed that has included many mistakes. But that's easy to say after the event. "It's much easier to criticize the conduct of the war today in the media than it was in previous wars. I'm sure there were great mistakes made in the past, too."

Source

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MINIMUM WAGE NONSENSE REVIVES

How to create unemployment in one easy lesson

A hike in the national minimum wage seems all but certain to become one of the first fruits of the Democrats' victories this week. Nancy Pelosi, the presumptive Speaker of the House, has pledged to raise the minimum by over $2, to $7.25 from $5.15. And President Bush has already signaled he'd go along. At the state level, six states not only approved minimum wage hikes in referendums this week but indexed the minimum to inflation going forward. We hope Mr. Bush fights off any attempt at federal indexation and insists on a provision to protect small business.

Raising the minimum wage has been a hardy perennial of the left for decades now. What is striking is the degree to which is has come to be seen as an economic free lunch. Even some reputedly unbiased economists have started to tout the view that raising the minimum wage has no discernible effect on job creation.

But if this were true, they'd be calling for a $10, $20 or even $50-an-hour minimum wage. They're not, and neither is Nancy Pelosi. That's because the law of demand is one of the most dependable precepts of economics. It says that when the price of something goes up, demand for it goes down. An employee's wages are the price the employer pays for his services, so raising their wages means forcing employers to pay more for workers. The price goes up and there is downward pressure on demand for workers. Other things being equal, jobs are lost

More here

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California: Republican voters didn't show up at the polls

Disillusionment with the GOP shows

California's Republican voters stayed home in droves on election day, as preliminary figures show voter turnout falling well below the state average in some of the most reliably GOP parts of the state. Although the final totals won't be known for weeks, election day turnout in Fresno, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and SanDiego counties, which all have Republican pluralities, ran as much as 10 percentage points below the state's 44 percent average turnout. "The turnout in Republican counties was low compared to the turnout in counties where Democrats hold the edge,'' said Patrick Dorinson, a spokesman for the state Republican Party. "The conservative Republican base didn't show up.''

Without that anticipated flood of votes from places such as Orange County and the Inland Empire, Tuesday was a long night for most of the statewide Republican candidates not named Arnold Schwarzenegger. "It came as a surprise,'' admitted Stan Devereaux, a spokesman for Republican state Sen. Tom McClintock, who lost the lieutenant governor's race to Democratic Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi. "We kept looking at the returns through the night and thought we had a chance, but when the returns (from Republican counties) came in, we didn't get the turnout we expected.''

Of course, there were exceptions. Schwarzenegger easily won re-election over Democratic state Treasurer Phil Angelides, and Republican businessman Steve Poizner, who put more than $9 million of his own money into the campaign for insurance commissioner, rolled over Democratic Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante. According to exit polls, Schwarzenegger attracted 93 percent of the Republican votes, 59 percent of independent voters, and a strong 22 percent of Democratic votes. "Angelides' collapse was a huge contributing factor to Schwarzenegger's victory,'' said Kevin Spillane, a GOP consultant. The governor "not only got near-unanimous support from Republicans, but drew a huge crossover vote from independents and Democrats.''

But Schwarzenegger did little campaigning for the other candidates on the GOP ticket, which meant those Republicans had to depend on their traditional strategy of running up big enough margins in the conservative parts of the state to overcome the flood of Democratic votes in Los Angeles County and the Bay Area. But with the 34 percent turnout in Riverside County and only 37 percent in Orange County, those Republican candidates couldn't find enough votes. "Our people just chose to stay home,'' said Beth Miller, a spokeswoman for Republican Bruce McPherson, who lost his job as secretary of state to Democratic state Sen. Debra Bowen of Marina Del Rey (Los Angeles County), 48 percent to 44 percent. "Republican turnout definitely had an effect on our race.''

More here

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

**************************

"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



12 November, 2006

WHY THE GOP LOSS? (1)

Comments from Mike Tremoglie:

One reason is that, while the national electorate has become increasingly more conservative, Republicans in the northeastern part of the United States remain liberal. Indeed, they have not even tried to introduce conservative ideas or institutions in the corridor from Maine to Maryland. This is especially true in the big cities of Philadelphia and Boston, which is counterintuitive when one considers Rudy Giuliani implemented conservative law enforcement ideas into New York City that proved to be extremely popular.

Yet, the Republican powers that be - i.e. Karl Rove - consider the Middle Atlantic and Northeast intractable warrens of liberalism. Not surprising considering he is from Texas. The two most egregious examples of this foolishness are the recent campaign strategies for Senate in Pennsylvania and Rhode Island and the congressional districts in suburban Philadelphia. All of the Republican candidates lost to conservative, or quasi-conservative, Democrats in a Clintonian election strategy.

Pundits will say incumbent Pennsylvania Republican Sen. Rick Santorum lost because of his conservatism. Not true. Santorum is the same conservative who won a congressional election and two senatorial elections. No, it wasn't Santorum's conservatism; it was his perceived betrayal of conservatives. Santorum was instructed in 2004, by Rove, to campaign for an incumbent liberal Republican Senator against a conservative candidate in the primary (this liberal Republican did not return the favor by the way). This alienated a whole segment of Republican voters. They felt betrayed by Santorum. These voters refused to vote for him, proclaiming that Republicans needed to be taught a lesson about abusing their conservative base. Meanwhile, the Democrats nominated a quasi-conservative opposite Santorum.

Similarly, Rove miscalculated in Rhode Island where he backed the uber liberal Republican Lincoln Chafee in the primary instead of the more conservative candidate. Chafee is so liberal, he did not even vote for Bush in 2004. Republican voters in Rhode Island were less than enamored with the liberal Chafee's shenanigans. A Democrat was elected - a former state Attorney General who can claim conservative credentials because of his law enforcement background.

Some will say this is not true. They will say these losses are a referendum on Iraq. Not so. If this were true, how do they explain that - former Democrat, now Independent, Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman - who is pro-war, and who lost his primary election to an antiwar candidate, was elected? How do they explain that antiwar candidates Linc Chafee and Marge Duckworth (albeit she is from Ohio) - a double amputee Iraqi war veteran - also were not elected.

No, Republicans in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic are weary of those they call RINO's (Republicans In Name Only). They want more conservative candidates. They also want honest candidates. One comment on a conservative Web site illustrates this, "This election was a refutation of Bush/Rove Rino policy - they had better think long and hard about supporting policies which are opposite of the core conservatives."

The Democrats understand this, which is why they anointed a retired military veteran to run opposite Curt Weldon for the district outside of Philadelphia. Weldon, is a conservative considered to be corrupt.

It is a mystery why Northeastern Republicans are reluctant to proffer conservative ideas. Yet, they need only realize that most of the Democrats who replaced Republican incumbents were conservatives. If one were to list statements on the issues by certain Republican candidates side by side with some Democrats, you would have a tough time telling who was the conservative and who was the liberal. Perhaps it is because the Northeastern Republican leadership is liberal. This is quite possible, considering the preponderance of liberal cultural institutions - books, newspapers, theaters - in the northeast. This is particularly true in the big cities.

The popular culture influences opinions. There are conservative books and newspapers springing up in the Northeast. Republicans just need to patronize them. Even Republicans needed to be educated or reminded of conservative thought. One cannot survive by Limbaugh alone. Maybe this election is a wake-up call for Northeastern Republicans. The Democrats have created their own monster. They succeeded in getting almost 20 conservatives elected to the House and Senate. Yet, the party leadership is extremely liberal. It will be interesting to see how these to factions will reconcile. Meanwhile, all those Republicans who voted for conservative Democrats better watch every vote of the Representative or Senator they helped elect.

Source

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WHY THE GOP LOSS? (2)

Comments from Pat Toomey:

The war in Iraq, President Bush's sagging approval numbers, and a series of scandals are widely considered the major culprits behind Republican losses in the House and Senate yesterday. This analysis is correct, but is incomplete. Abandonment of the principle of limited government must be added to the litany of serious Republican missteps.

A poll commissioned by the Club for Growth in 15 key districts shows surprisingly severe damage to this aspect of the GOP brand (to see a summary of the results, see here). And it's little wonder. From the last Farm Bill to the Prescription Drug entitlement to McCain-Feingold to runaway spending, Republicans in Washington stopped being the party of limited government sometime ago. And the American people noticed.

Once they lost their less-government, fiscal-discipline branding, Washington Republicans lost a big reason for their majority status. The survey we conducted two nights before the election shows that voters in swing districts no longer believed that Republicans stood for limited government and fiscal discipline. And those same voters overwhelmingly threw the Republicans out of office, and with them their majority.

We surveyed 800 very likely voters across the 15 Republican-held districts we thought most likely to switch parties. We excluded those districts plagued by personal scandals. Since most of the fifteen seats did in fact switch from Republican to Democrat, clearly these were battleground districts.

We asked voters if they thought that, over the last four years, "the size and cost of the Federal Government has gone up, gone down, or stayed about the same?" Seventy-three percent recognized that it has gone up. And whom do you think they blame? We asked voters whether they agreed or disagreed with the statement: "The Republican Party used to be the Party of economic growth, fiscal discipline, and limited government, but in recent years, too many Republicans in Washington have become just like the big spenders that they used to oppose." An amazing 66 percent of the respondents agreed with that statement.

We asked which party is doing a better job "eliminating wasteful spending." The Democrats led 39 percent to 25 percent. Which party is "the party of big government?" The Republicans, by an 11 point margin. All of this is a big part of the reason the Republican party lost. Republicans squandered one of the very few valuable brands it established in voters' minds over many years. And voters care about fiscal discipline and lower taxes.

More here

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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11 November, 2006

Brookes News Update

US economy's imbalances : Loose monetary policy result in the accumulation of large-scale imbalances. The longer the central bank persists in expanding the money supply the greater will be the imbalances. This is why the US economy must eventually go into recession
Does the high level of debt pose a threat to US economy? : The real threat to the US economy is not the high level of debt as such but credit that is not backed by real savings. Also, the fall in the money stock that precedes price deflation and an economic slump is actually triggered by the previous loose monetary policies
Can America afford Democrats like Senator Chris Dodd? : Do Americans actually realise how important to their safety the impending mid-term elections are. For instance, lets take a look at Christopher Dodd, Democratic Senator from Connecticut
Conservative Rupert Murdoch endorses Hillary Clinton : The New York Post has endorsed Hillary Clinton for the Senate over a solid conservative, John Spencer. Its another sign that Post owner Rupert Murdoch, whose News Corporation is also the parent of the Fox News Channel, is moving to the left
New York honors Fidel Castro with a statue : Ill be surprised if Charles Rangel isnt keynote speaker at the Central Park celebration for the Stalinist/racist Castro who jailed and tortured black political prisoners longer than Apartheid South Africa, and who kidnaps his subjects and rents them out for 3 pennies an hour
What would the Democrats do if they controlled Congress?: The Republican Study Committee (RSC) recently put together an interesting document which highlights activities that normally fly under the radar screen of the media.
Minimum wage fever breaks out again : Imposing an effective minimum wage rate on the labour market prices marginal workers out of jobs and into poverty. But dont expect our smart-aleck lefty journos to write that one up
Whats really scary this Halloween : Then theres the biggest money-waster the failure to teach children the difference between right and wrong. The fancy name for this problem is moral relativism. A concept thats preached in the mainstream media everyday

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ELSEWHERE

I have just put up a book review here by an Australian friend who is politically middle of the road. The book is Conservative comebacks to Liberal Lies -- by Gregg Jackson. If I had reviewed the book myself, I would have said much in praise of it but I thought it more informative to find out whether or not it is the sort of book that we could recommend to someone whom we want to talk out of Leftist thinking. It would seem from the review that the book is aimed at American conservatives only.

The result of being soft on crime: "More criminals are returning to a life of crime within months of serving sentences than when Labour came to power, according to official figures published yesterday. Despite millions of pounds being spent to help offenders go straight, more than 57 per cent of adult offenders are convicted of another crime within two years of ending their sentence or starting a community penalty. When Labour came to power, intent on ending the "revolving door" syndrome in which offenders are constantly in and out of jail or repeatedly given community sentences, the figure was 53.1 per cent. However, the reoffending rate is now even worse, with two-thirds of men back in jail within two years of walking out of the prison gates."

Germany has not changed much: "A huge new synagogue, Europe's largest Jewish centre, was opened in the heart of Munich yesterday to mark the 68th anniversary of Kristallnacht - the Night of Broken Glass - when Nazis went on an anti-Semitic rampage across Germany. The cube-shaped building is an act of defiance at a time when anti-Semitic sentiment is again beginning to bubble below the surface. Neo-Nazis plotted unsuccessfully to blow up the foundation stone of the new synagogue, and bureaucrats dragged their feet for decades before agreeing to give the prime site to the Jewish community... A survey published by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, a social justice charity, demonstrates how controversial the new centre will be among Germans: 39 per cent of those questioned say that the country is being dangerously swamped by foreigners, 18 per cent that the influence of Jews is too great while 15 per cent want a strong leader, literally a Fuehrer. There is deeper anti-Semitism and xenophobia in western Germany than in the east. Most commentators had assumed that the former communist east was the most vulnerable to racism. "It is shocking how far Nazi prejudices have simply been taken over," said the newspaper Die Welt."

Corruption named as key issue by voters in exit polls: "By a wide margin, Americans who voted Tuesday in the midterm election say they disapprove of the war in Iraq. But when asked which issue was extremely important to their vote, more voters said corruption and ethics in government than any other issue, including the war, according to national exit polls. A large majority of voters also disapproved of how Congress and President Bush are doing their jobs."

Are Republicans and Democrats really that different?: "During election week in the U.S., the Bureaucrash Activist Network is releasing a video every day that pits the Democrats against Republicans that is in the style of the popular 'Get a Mac' ads by Apple. We aren't trying to sell a product -- just the idea that both major political parties have more in common than they want voters to realize. They both want your money and more power at the expense of your freedom."

Property theft in America: "Do you live in a blighted home in a blighted neighborhood? You might without even knowing it. But don't worry, your local politicians will be happy to tell you -- as soon as some land developer decides your neighborhood would be a great place to build swankier homes or shops. Don't want to leave your home? Tough luck."

Renewing the contract: "In assessing last night's results it is important to note that it was not a defeat for conservatism; it was a defeat for Republicanism, or at least, what Republicanism has come to represent. In the past 12 years, Republicans went from the party that promised 'the end of government that is too big, too intrusive, and too easy with the public's money' to the party of the Bridge to Nowhere; it took control of Congress on a pledge to 'end its cycle of scandal and disgrace' and went down in defeat as the party of Tom DeLay and Mark Foley. Having abandoned its core principles, the Republican Party had nothing to run on this year, so its campaign strategy centered on attacking Nancy Pelosi -- a questionable tactic given that, according to some polls, more than half of the country had never even heard of her."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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10 November, 2006

CONSERVATIVE DEMOCRATS BACK

They wear cowboy boots, chew tobacco, love hunting, hate abortion, want less government spending - and some voted for Ronald Reagan. Now they are headed to Congress as Democrats. Although the Democrats' victory was above all an overwhelming repudiation of the conflict in Iraq, it was also built on the back of moderate, often conservative candidates recruited to compete in traditionally Republican territory.

When Congress returns in January, both the House and Senate will see something of an ideological shift, with an influx of freshmen Democrats who, while unified in their opposition to the war, are well to the right of the party's current caucus on cultural issues. Their success reflects a resurgence of "Blue Dog" Democrats - socially conservative but generally economic populists - across the Midwest, and a bold new strategy to target the Republican-leaning West and South West - states such as Colorado, Wyoming and New Mexico - as a way of winning back the White House in 2008.

If Jon Tester, the Democrat's Senate candidate in Montana, wins his race against Conrad Burns - he declared victory last night but votes were still being counted - the chamber will have a Democrat who is an anti-abortion, pro-gun, three-generation farmer with a buzz cut, three missing fingers on his left hand and no big fan of Hillary Clinton.

Jim Webb, the Democrat favoured to win a probable recount in the Virginia Senate race, was Reagan's Navy Secretary. A social conservative, he hates liberals and likes guns so much he gave one to his son at the age of 8. He champions, as he puts it, "Southern redneck culture". A decorated Vietnam veteran, he converted to the Democrats only over his opposition to the Iraq war.

Bob Casey, who soundly defeated the Republican Rick Santorum in Pennsylvania's Senate race, is also anti-abortion. Like many of the new Democrats, he ran a profoundly populist protectionist economic message which attracted many blue-collar "Reagan Democrats" back to the party in the Midwest, where job losses and economic pessimism combined with Iraq to make the region one of the bleakest landscapes for Republicans yesterday. Heath Shuler, a former quarterback for the Washington Redskins, was once courted by the Republicans as a possible congressional candidate. He is anti-abortion, pro-gun, anti-free trade - and is now the Democrat representative for the North Carolina 11th District.

In Indiana, a state overwhelmingly won by President Bush in 2004, three Republicans in the House of Representatives lost seats. All faced conservative Democrats. One, Brad Ellsworth, a county sheriff, is a social conservative who signed a no-tax-rise pledge during the campaign. Joe Donnelly was another cultural conservative winner in Indiana.

In Colorado, Democrats continued their push into the West with victory in the state's gubernatorial contest, meaning the party now has a sweep of western governors stretching from Canada to Mexico, through Montana, Wyoming, Colorado and New Mexico. In Kentucky, John Yarmuth, a former Republican candidate running as a Democrat, beat Anne Northup, a five-term veteran. Democrats also picked up an open seat in Republican Arizona and even unseated a Republican incumbent in Kansas - where Mr Bush won 62 per cent of the vote in 2004.

These new Democrats represent what Rahm Emanuel, the congressman who masterminded its takeover of the House, described as the future of the party, and the key to its presidential hopes. The growing belief of many Democrat strategists is that the South - the party's base until the 1960s, but now solidly Republican - is beyond their reach, and that the future lies in targeting the Midwest and West with moderate candidates. That theory was bolstered by the defeat in Tennessee of Harold Ford. Despite running as a conservative on nearly every issue - even immigration - the black former congressman could not prevail in the one Southern senate seat in play.

More here

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ELSEWHERE

Anti-Illegal win: "Arizona voters resoundingly passed three anti-illegal-immigrant ballot measures Tuesday and established English as the state’s official language. The landslide victory all four passed by about 3-to-1 ratios statewide sends a message that the state won’t tolerate illegal immigration, said proponent Don Goldwater. "The people of Arizona have said, ’Enough,’ and that they want this issue taken care of," said Goldwater, a gubernatorial candidate who lost in the Republican primary in September. "If the federal government won’t stand up, then by God, the state of Arizona will." Election night proved a sad outcome for immigrant advocates who carried out a grassroots campaign of rallies, fliers and news conferences to try to defeat the measures".

Comment from Boortz: "One thing is certain. The Republicans worked very hard for this defeat. They've earned every lost seat. The Republican majority that was sent packing yesterday bore little resemblance to the Republican majority that rode to power 12 years ago. In 1994 we were promised less government. Over the next 12 years the Republicans more than doubled the size of the government. We were promised control over runaway spending. In the last six years discretionary spending has doubled. We were promised fiscal responsibility. We got a bridge to nowhere in Alaska. We were promised the elimination of the Department of Education. After all, educational achievement had been on a steady decline since education was federalized under this Department. In no time at all the Republicans doubled funding for the Department of Education. In the meanwhile America continues to slip on the international scorecard of educational achievement. The Republicans, in full control of the government, couldn't even manage to stop the Mexican invasion. How many Hispanics invaded our country across the Mexican / American border in the last 12 years? Twelve million? Twenty? Funny, but I don't remember pressing 1 for English in 1994."

FBI looking for congressional sting opportunities: "The new chief of the FBI's Criminal Division, which is swamped with public corruption cases, says the bureau is ramping up its ability to catch crooked politicians and might run an undercover sting on Congress. Assistant FBI Director James Burrus called the bureau's public corruption program 'a sleeping giant that we've awoken' and predicted the nation will see continued emphasis in that area 'for many, many, many years to come.'"

All eyes on Roberts court as it takes on abortion: "The morning after the closely fought midterm elections, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear its first major abortion case in six years. The hot-button issue has been debated for years among social and religious activists, voters and judges themselves. At issue in Wednesday's arguments is the constitutionality of a federal law banning a specific late-term procedure its critics call 'partial-birth' abortion."

Why we should worry more about vote fraud: "An election system that is less than transparent is one that's open to conspiracy theories and fear of fraud, whether or not fraud is actually present. And I've heard quite a few other Democrats echoing Pelosi -- and quite a few Republicans speculating that a Democratic Congress will ride in on a wave of votes from dead people and illegal immigrants. That sort of thinking seems much more common among respectable members of both parties than it was a few years ago, and I think there's reason to fear it's getting worse."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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9 November, 2006

MIDTERM ELECTION COMMENT BY HUGH HEWITT

I have to assume that the Dems will get the Senate as well as the House, though Conrad Burns may be able to pull off an upset, in which case I hope the GOP in the Senate reject the silly rules they agreed to the last time the body was 50/50. They got no cooperation from Dems over the past two years, and if by good luck and the Veep's vote they have the majority, they have got to begin to use it.

The long and short of this bad but not horrific night was that majorities must act like majorities. The public cares little for the "traditions" of the Senate or the way the appropriations process used to work. It demands results. Handed a large majority, the GOP frittered it away. The chief fritterer was Senator McCain and his Gang of 14 and Kennedy-McCain immigration bill, supplemented by a last minute throw down that prevented the NSA bill from progressing or the key judicial nominations from receiving a vote. His accomplice in that master stroke was Senator Graham. Together they cost their friend Mike DeWine his seat in the Senate, and all their Republican colleagues their chairmanships. Senator McCain should rethink his presidential run. Amid the ruins of the GOP's majority there is a clear culprit.

A second loser was Bill Frist. To be the Majority Leader of a majority that did not lead is lethal to his presidential ambitions. Like Senator McCain, it would be easier on everyone if he just exited the stage.

President Bush will not flag in the pursuit of the war, and Senator Santorum is now available for a seat on the SCOTUS should one become available. GOP senators will have the chance to select leadership equal to the new world of politics which, as the past two years have demonstrated, does not reward timidity.

House Republicans as well have to rebuild from the ground up and with an eye on those members best equipped to debate the almost certain overreaches of the Democratic majority. From the first day of the new Congress it is going to be a partisan slugfest or a GOP dismemberment. The GOP must find the fighters with talent and promote them. The anti-illegal immigration absolutists got their heads handed to them. As the fence goes up, their rhetoric must go down --dramatically.

But there is good news as well. Hillary's path back to the White House is much more difficult with her party in the majority in the House, and much much more difficult if the Senate falls to Harry Reid's command as well. Clarity as to her party's fecklessness will be back within the first six months, and the GOP frontrunners --Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney-- do not have to serve in the almost certain to be paralyzed Senate.

The Beltway-Manhattan media elite is now stuck "covering" Democratic majorities. Sure, they will go easy on them, but it is much more difficult to cover for a majority than a minority. And it is a wonderful day for new media, especially talk radio. For two years we have had to defend the Congressional gang that couldn't shoot straight. Now we get to play offense. I am concerned for the country that the Democrats have won, but the Republicans are indeed going to find this sojourn in the minority a potentially very good thing. If the GOP adopts and refines the tactics the Democrats have used for the past four years all will be well two years hence, and perhaps even better than well.

Source

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ELSEWHERE

I rarely post on my Scripture blog these days but I have just put up there a useful article that rebuts some of the twisting of scripture that Leftists occasionally indulge in. I have done some similar rebutting myself here

CNN as biased as Al Jazeera: "The Prime Minister of the Iraqi Kurdistan regional government met with the families of fallen U.S. soldiers today and he had a message for the news media: your coverage of the Iraq war is terribly biased. "CNN International and Al Jazeera are equally bad in their coverage of the situation in Iraq," said Nerchivan Barzani, Prime Minister of Iraqi Kurdistan. "When I was in the United States recently and read the negative news in the Washington Post, New York Times and in the network TV broadcasts, I even wondered if things had gotten so bad since I had left that I shouldn't return," said Prime Minister Barzani."

Hotel yanks CNN; says network is pro-terrorist : "Guests at one local hotel who switch on the TV in search of the latest news no longer have CNN as an option. The Stoney Creek Inn, 1100 Imperial Ave., in Rothschild has dropped the 24-hour news channels CNN and CNN Headline News from its basic cable offerings. Tony Magro, 76, of Barrington, Ill., stayed at the inn Monday night and said he was told by a receptionist that the hotel chain's corporate office had issued a letter calling for the removal of the channels because CNN aids terrorists.... James Thompson, owner and chief executive officer of Stoney Creek Hospitality Corp., made the decision to remove the channels, according to the inn's corporate office in Des Moines, Iowa"

Communist Party supporting Dems: "The Nov. 7 midterm elections are less than six weeks away. The stakes have never been so high: Control of the House and Senate and governorships nationwide. A recent poll shows that 75 percent of voters are disgusted by the Republican majority House and Senate, the highest disapproval rate since 1994. They are frustrated at Bush's endless Iraq war, by Republican cronyism and corruption, tax giveaways to the rich, cutbacks in vital services, and criminal negligence in the wake of Hurricane Katrina." A last-minute pitch by the Democratic National Committee for a sweep in tomorrow's midterm congressional elections? No. It's an official appeal by the National Board of the Communist Party USA on behalf of Democrats."

Massive Voter Registration Fraud by "Progressive" Organization: "Last Thursday a federal grand jury in Kansas City indicted four persons working for the group Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, accusing them of submitting more than 15,000 voter registration forms with fictitious names, phony signatures and bogus addresses. ACORN is a liberal advocacy group that claims to speak for the poor and minorities - running these voter registration drives no doubt to prime the pump for an Election Day voter turnout operation that includes multiple voting by the same people at different precincts in a state with a tightly contested Senate race."

Racist attacks on black conservative: "Black Democratic leaders in Maryland say that racially tinged attacks against Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele in his bid for the U.S. Senate are fair because he is a conservative Republican. Such attacks against the first black man to win a statewide election in Maryland include pelting him with Oreo cookies during a campaign appearance, calling him an "Uncle Tom" and depicting him as a black-faced minstrel on a liberal Web log. Operatives for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) also obtained a copy of his credit report -- the only Republican candidate so targeted." Martin Luther King's dream that one day skin colour would not matter is obviously not shared by today's Left

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



8 November, 2006

SOME UNBEATABLE LOGIC

Who said this?

"When the scholars of today discuss good government, many of them say, 'Give land to the poor and destitute so that those who have no means of livelihood may be provided for.' Now if men start out with equal opportunities and yet there are a few who, without help or unusually good harvetys or outside income, are able to keep themselves well supplied, it must be due to either hard work or to frugal living. If men start with equal opportunities and yet there are a few who, without having suffered from some calamity like famine or sickness, still sink into poverty and destitution, it must be due either to laziness or to extravagant living. The lazy and extravagant grow poor; the diligent and and frugal get rich. Now if the ruler levies money from the rich in order to give alms to the poor, he is robbing the diligent and frugal and indulging the lazy and extravagant. If he expects by such means to induce the people to work industriously and spend with caution, he will be disappointed."

It was said by a Chinese gentleman, Han Fei, born circa 280 B.C. He was from a royal family of aristocrats but what he says has been true for over two thousand years so far.

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT FROM GAGDAD BOB:

What is at stake Tuesday is the same thing that has been at stake since time immemorial: a choice between the truth that is, has always been, and cannot be invented; and a shallow and improvised falsehood that man -- both individually and collectively -- perpetually fabricates to shield himself from reality. If truth is known and embraced, it is efficacious and leads to dynamic progress. But to the extent that truth is warped or denied, the only result can be various degrees of catastrophe in the form of sharp blows from reality.

There is no getting around the fact that the "culture war" is at bottom a theological dispute between secular and traditionally religious forces. But it would be a great error to conclude that the war therefore involves atheistic vs. theistic camps, much less logic vs. faith. Rather, it is a war of competing theisms, each rooted in faith and steeped in metaphysics. Radical secularists are rarely neutral about God -- in fact, they are obviously burning with passion about spiritual matters. Secular leftism merely replaces one God with another, but in so doing, destroys man.

Human beings cannot help being religious. One of the benefits of religion --properly understood -- is that it prevents the mind from regressing into the magical worldview that preceded its development. Sophisticated secularists believe they are making progress by leaving the "superstitions" of religion behind, but this is rarely the case. As Chesterson said, instead of believing "nothing," they tend to believe in "anything," which is where the pseudo-religion of contemporary liberalism -- that is, leftism -- rushes in to fill the void.

Elections are about intentions and about truth. In an election, we are not just choosing a candidate, but choosing our future and affirming what we believe to be true -- not just the facts, but the paradigm for interpreting them. When truth and intent coincide, then progress can occur. But if there is a rupture between them, then democracy easily becomes the method of its own demise.

Almost all liberals have good intentions. The question is whether their intentions are in accord with reality. For if we could only discern what is true, then voting would be seen not so much as a choice but a ratification of the obvious. In the end, you cannot really vote to reject reality. Or you can, but you'll lose every time.

It seems that the impending election may represent a forked tongue in the historical road ahead. One way or the other, history will inevitably arrive at its appointed deustination, but an election allows us to vote yea or nay on where it has recently been, and to try to steer it in another direction. But without real truth and insight, this exercise can be as frivolous as taking a vote on where your own life has been the previous two years and expecting things to magically change.

We keep hearing that this election is a "referendum on Iraq," but as always, it is a referendum on reality. In order to not perceive the simple reality that we are in a world war, the leftist mind must unconsciously "attack" any evidence that leads to that conclusion. Thus, it may look like President Bush is being attacked, but he is incidental to the deeper process of attacking and dismantling a reality that the left does not wish to see.

The MSM and their political action wing, the Democratic Party, is not only wrong, but not even wrong, because it is not operating in an environment where truth is permitted, much less perceived. Or, to be perfectly accurate, the truth is unconsciously perceived, over which is erected a makeshift lie that can be easily discerned by any clear thinker.

More here

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ELSEWHERE

Andrew Sullivan's derangement is getting worse. He can't tell the difference between the hand of a white man and the hand of a black man.

The Press at War: "We are told by careful pollsters that half of the American people believe that American troops should be brought home from Iraq immediately. This news discourages supporters of our efforts there. Not me, though: I am relieved. Given press coverage of our efforts in Iraq, I am surprised that 90% of the public do not want us out right now. Between Jan. 1 and Sept. 30, 2005, nearly 1,400 stories appeared on the ABC, CBS and NBC evening news. More than half focused on the costs and problems of the war, four times as many as those that discussed the successes. About 40% of the stories reported terrorist attacks; scarcely any reported the triumphs of American soldiers and Marines. The few positive stories about progress in Iraq were just a small fraction of all the broadcasts. When the Center for Media and Public Affairs made a nonpartisan evaluation of network news broadcasts, it found that during the active war against Saddam Hussein, 51% of the reports about the conflict were negative. Six months after the land battle ended, 77% were negative; in the 2004 general election, 89% were negative; by the spring of 2006, 94% were negative"

Why Europe's best Muslims are leaving Europe: "The best and brightest are leaving Germany and Europe. Capable young academics and freelancers especially can't stand the stuffiness, narrow-mindedness and bureaucracies of the old continent any more. They almost always go to the USA , where those willing and able to work are rewarded. Apart from the birth dearth, that's the demographic disaster. The integration disaster looks like this: The few true Euro-Muslims are also leaving us and going to the USA . Both disasters threaten [Europe] from within. This trend has names: Bassam Tibi, Hirse Ali, Salman Rushdie. Each of the three has his personal reasons to move from the old to the new world. The individual mosaic stones really form a picture. It fundamentally departs from the caricature of the allegedly intolerant, racist and non-intellectual USA on the one hand, and the Western European-German ideal of a cosmopolitan, tolerant and intellectually stimulating society on the other."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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7 November, 2006

VISIT TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM

(Courtesy of KKOH, RENO, NV)

The other day, I needed to go to the emergency room. Not wanting to sit there for 4+ hours, I put on my old Army fatigues and stuck a patch that I had downloaded off the internet onto the front of my shirt. When I went into the E.R., I noticed that 3/4 of the people got up and left. I guess they decided that they weren't that sick after all. Here's the patch below: Feel free to use it the next time you're in need of quicker emergency service



For non-American readers: The ER is much used by illegal immigrants -- whether they have emergency conditions or not

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The mid-term Congressional elections

I am not blogging here on the elections for two reasons: 1). I am a bit far away from it all here in Australia; 2). I also blog at STACLU -- which is giving big coverage to election material -- so if I DO have something to say, I will say it there.

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Crisis of Faith

Sam Karnick reviews "The End of Commitment: Intellectuals, Revolutionaries, and Political Morality", by Paul Hollander -- excerpts:

In both practical and intellectual terms, Communism has been entirely discredited by the events of the past two decades. Nonetheless, a large number of people - and a significant proportion of Western intellectuals - still harbor a good deal of fondness for socialist ideals, and their politics demonstrate it vividly.

In The End of Commitment, the distinguished sociologist Paul Hollander, author of Political Pilgrims, investigates what causes people to adopt and steadfastly adhere to ideas that lead to mass murder and widespread suffering. Observing that many intellectuals placidly accepted and even enthusiastically approved of actions done for the ideal of Communism that would have horrified them if committed for any other reason, Hollander explores the amazing ability of true believers in political religions to persist in their faith despite mountains of contrary evidence.....

Hollander astutely observes, in a discussion of Soviet dissident and literary scholar Lev Kopelev, that his and others' faith in socialism was really a substitute religion, a matter of "profoundly and genuinely religious attitudes and beliefs." Kopelev's struggles, he notes, "indicate that intellectuals - no less than ordinary people and possibly more so - long for sustaining beliefs." Hollander writes vividly of Soviet intellectuals who endured frequent collisions with the authorities and even more persistent shock and revulsion at the brutality the Communist leadership engaged in and required their underlings to carry out.....

The danger under which Communist officials and intellectuals lived was in great contrast to the conditions enjoyed by their Western supporters. At a safe remove, Western leftists could easily remain ignorant or dismissive of any imperfections in the reality of life under Communism. And as Hollander notes, "the existence of adversarial subcultures in the West since the 1960s has made it easier to cling to beliefs and loyalties that have been discredited or undermined by historical events and experiences elsewhere."

Hollander provides copious examples of the appeal of Communism in the journeys of former Western sympathizers such as David Horowitz, Ronald Radosh, Eugene Genovese, Christopher Hitchens, Doris Lessing, and several lesser-known individuals. Hollander notes that Lessing eventually realized that the attraction of Communism in the West is caused "not so much because of moral indignation aroused by specific social injustices but rather due to disappointment with a wide range of unmet and unrealistic personal expectations."

The theme of alienation likewise occurs repeatedly in Hollander's descriptions of numerous non-famous American leftists who answered his call for self-revelations. Hollander writes, "Virtually every respondent harbored deep disaffection from American society and an acute awareness of its shortcomings and injustices, its unrealized ideals. . . . A wounded idealism seeking an outlet in leftist social or political activism appeared to be the most widely shared trait, indeed the defining characteristic of these respondents."

This alienation from American life and values is most evident in Hollander's account of linguist and political gadfly Noam Chomsky and his virulent, anti-American attitudes. Individuals such as Chomsky are so thoroughly alienated from their society that they find fault with everything about it and are quick to excuse any attack on it. Chomsky claimed, for example, that the 9/11 attacks pale next to the West's "deep-seated culture of terrorism." This sort of thinking has made him a hero to many American leftists.

Such a worldview leads easily to the demonization of one's enemies. Hollander observes that, like Islamic radicals, some Western leftists show a "ready acceptance of inflicting great suffering on behalf of glorious ends, in the untroubled subordination of ends and means." Hollander ends his book on a note of hope, observing that some individuals do indeed face the evidence and change their minds. Unfortunately, these individuals appear to be rather less common than the true believers, in Hollander's revealing account. The human capacity to pursue illusions is enormous, and as a result, the work of thwarting the politics of personal alienation is never done.

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ELSEWHERE

U.S. gets serious about Korean nukes: "The Pentagon is speeding up plans for possible military strikes on North Korea's nuclear programme as concern mounts that Arab states are also looking to acquire nuclear technology. US defence officials said detailed planning was under way for precision strikes on nuclear facilities such as the North Korean plutonium reprocessing plant at Yongbyon. The plant is thought to have supplied the plutonium fuel used in an underground nuclear test carried out by Kim Jong-il's pariah regime on October 9. A Pentagon official said "various military options" for halting North Korea's nuclear programme were under consideration. "Other than nuclear strikes, which are considered excessive, there are several options now in place. Planning has been accelerated," the official told The Washington Times. According to defence sources, one option includes strikes on Yongbyon by Tomahawk cruise missiles fired from submarines or ships. Precision-guided bombs and missiles could also be delivered by B-52 or B-2 stealth bombers."

Surprising sense from a senior British Leftist: "Gordon Brown has called for a new global alliance of governments, business leaders and public figures to fight the reactionary "Luddites" opposed to globalisation and break the "dangerous global log jam" that is threatening world trade. The Chancellor, writing today in The Times, challenges leaders to show the determination necessary to stop the world slipping back into a new era of protectionism, comparing it to the effort needed to rebuild the international order after the Second World War."

Chris Brand has just done a new lot of posts on his usual themes of race, IQ and political correctness -- with particular emphasis on the British scene.

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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6 November, 2006

Times Echoes

A distinct subculture, a belief system if not a religion, exists in the United States. Its members draw their instruction on what to believe and how to live from the New York Times. I call them the Times Echoes. They exist in urban social ecosystems all across American.

There are certain people you never forget. One is a man I knew who was an anomaly in more ways than one. He was a politically conservative Jewish septuagenarian living in Westchester County, NY, within the gravitational pull of the Den of Iniquity (that would be NYC). Possessing a genius IQ and intrepidity to match, on more than one occasion he told me of a technique he used when debating liberals. He'd say, "I can tell you what you believe on any issue. Name for me any issue, and I'll tell you what your position is." Not that he claimed powers of divination. He explained, "I can do this because I know they get their beliefs from the New York Times. All I have to do is open the Times, and that's what they believe."

This came to mind when I read Clay Waters' piece on Timeswatch, "Richard Berke Bashes Blogs that Criticize the Times." Reporting on an event called Times Talk, at the New York Historical Society in Manhattan, Waters writes,

. . . what struck me was the condescending and sometimes paranoid liberalism of the audience questioners. Of the seven or eight audience members who addressed the panel, none said anything that could be remotely construed as Republican or even moderate. Instead, the panelists got foreboding questionings of whether Bush believed in democracy and whether Red State folk are as ignorant as they are because they don't read the New York Times.

Don't think this is unusual. For instance, I remember another septuagenarian, a woman I engaged in a political debate. She was an avid reader of the Times and when I asked her if she believed everything contained therein, her response was "yes." When I asked why, I was informed that it was because the people who write for them are "very intelligent."

To Times Echoes, the Times isn't merely an information source. It isn't even just the newspaper of record. It is an oracle, an inerrant purveyor of wisdom, compared to which the Bible pales. But the Times Echo is most certainly human. Although, if Christian theology is correct that it's intellect and free will that separate man from the animal kingdom, perhaps just barely so.

If you're offended by the Times Echo's query about ignorant Red Staters, don't be. Despite their delusion that they're possessed of sophistication, Times Echoes are the most callow, provincial of creatures. You see, they don't actually interact with people from the hinterlands and consider sufficient study of the latter's culture to be a screening of Deliverance.

More here

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"Spoilt Brat" Democrats

We're a country at war. Even if we could grant the cut-and-run caucus its fondest wish and remove our presence from Iraq on November 8, we would still be a country at war. The sad fact is there are millions of very dangerous people who loathe us and intend us great harm.

One can make arguments that the administration should have prosecuted the war differently. On the right side of our political spectrum, there is currently a spirited debate regarding the quality of the Bush administration's efforts, Donald Rumsfeld's value, troop levels in Iraq and what to do about Iran, Syria and North Korea. But what you don't see on the political right or in the Republican Party is denial. You don't see a childish worldview that American withdrawal will make us safe. You see a grim if often unstated acknowledgement of our distressing reality - we're in for a long war, and there will be a lot more blood spilled on all sides before it is done.

On the Democratic side, all you see is a blissful lack of awareness of that reality. Whenever you hear a Democratic politician whine for the involvement of the global community or some other simplistic claptrap plan that will purportedly bring an instant end to the world's turmoil, you're seeing the evidence of spoiled-brat thinking that holds that even the most intractable problems can be solved easily and painlessly. Were it only so. Even if the Democrats don't realize it, we're all going to have to roll up our sleeves and get dirty before this war is won.

They are not just wrong, but dangerously misguided. Iran doesn't want peace. The Syrian Baathists don't want peace. The fundamentalist terror groups like Al Qaeda, Hamas and Hezbollah don't want peace. Nor does the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt or millions of fanatical Salafists in Saudi Arabia. We have a lot of malefactors out there, and they're not going to be mollified by a "more sensitive" war on terror.

We can only wish denial was the modern left's biggest problem. They actually believe that America mid-wifed terrorism and Radical Islam. They view America as the bad guy and American actions as the deus ex machina that made the world the dangerous place it is today. You can try to talk such people out of their views by pointing to the Muslim Brotherhood of the Saudi Salafists who have had global dreams of conquest before George W. Bush came out of the oil fields. But that just confuses them - they've never heard of either entity and thus figure they surely don't matter.

You can then try to reduce the argument to the simple facts that the first attack on the World Trade Center, the bombing of the embassies, the attack on the Cole and 9/11 all happened BEFORE the current Iraq war. But even that doesn't register. They refuse to relinquish the mindset that America caused its own problems.

In a way, this viewpoint serves them as a security blanket of sorts. Their simplistic logic holds that if American actions caused all our problems, then a reversal of course could make all those problems vanish. Thus, they focus on a the evils of the "Rethuglicans", which is surely a more pleasant mental exercise than picturing what we're actually going to have to go through before this country and the world are safe..... what the Democratic Party has transformed itself into leaves us little choice but to crawl over broken glass on Tuesday if necessary to pull the lever for Republicans.

The Democrats have made it clear to their supporters that they will use whatever power they accumulate to attack domestic demons. At this point in history, we can't afford to have such misguided and unserious people in charge of anything consequential. It's all something of a shame. If you read the leftwing blogs, you know they've got hate by the boatload. It's too bad that hate can't be channeled at the people who hate them back, the ones screaming for Jihad and pining for their deaths.

More here

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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5 November, 2006

NEW YORK TIMES PROVES THAT BUSH WAS RIGHT ABOUT IRAQ

So, the New York Times reports on its front page today that Saddam Hussein had the necessary information and expertise to build nuclear weapons as far back as pre-1991, and that the information is so damning even now that posting it on a public website fifteen years later could assist other regimes, including Iran, in building such weapons.

The Times has just confirmed two things: 1. President Bush was right when he said that Hussein was a threat to the world because, among other things, he would continue to pursue weapons of mass destruction; and 2. congressional Republicans were right in demanding a more aggressive and thorough effort by the Pentagon to interpret the enormous number of documents captured from the Iraqi regime.

The Times's emphasis on "Republicans" demanding the release of these documents and the administration's posting them on a public website was an obvious attempt by the newspaper to cause some kind of eleventh-hour Republican embarrassment. The Times had hoped the weekend before the election would be spent debating the handling of this information rather than its existence and substance. But it was wrong. This is a stunning find that confirms a primary basis for the president ordering the military to remove Hussein from power. This finding also strikes a blow to the Democrat mantra that the president lied to get us into the war with Iraq.

The Democrats and their partners in the liberal media demand to know what the president plans to do to stop Iran and North Korea from securing nuclear weapons. Yet, when he did, in fact, stop Iraq from getting those same weapons, he is loudly denounced for it.

Source

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"WE ARE SUPERIOR" IS THE ONLY REAL MESSAGE OF THE NARCISSISTIC LEFT

Why did the NYT shoot themselves in the foot?

In our political world, there is a great deal of Narcissistic investment in ideas that have become identified as "liberal" or "left." ... The reason I refer to these ideas as "Narcissistically invested" is that they are primarily designed to show that the proponents of the ideas are smarter, kinder, more caring than their opponents. Self described "liberals" or "progressives" are bolstered by such ideas which is why a common theme on the "progressive" web sites is that John Kerry was just telling the truth when he made his now infamous remarks.

The New York Times has long been one of the leading voice of "liberalism" in our culture. Using their journalism schooled grasp of sophisticated language, they have done as much as anyone to promulgate the "Bush lied!" slogan, which has long since replaced logical argumentation by those who oppose the war in Iraq. The slogan has never had much validity. It never made any logical or psychological sense for Bush to lie us into Iraq, for oil or revenge or any other reason proposed to explain why any President would risk his political life for such illusory goals. In fact, the claim was not meant to be examined for any factual validity. It was meant to allow people to come out in opposition to the war while maintaining their political viability and, yes, their self esteem.

Here is how this works. In order for the "left" to maintain their self esteem, they must see themselves as being correct. To someone who has a Narcissistic investment in their ideas, to be seen as wrong is an intolerable humiliation. Almost anything is better than being publicly humiliated. Since George Bush and the dreaded Neocons were proposing ideas that were incompatible with the "left" someone must be wrong. How could the "left" be smarter than the moronic Bush if Bush was right about Saddam Hussein. The failure to find WMD was a gift of incalculable proportions to the "left." It allowed them to convince themselves that there were no WMD, that Saddam Hussein was never a danger to us, and that the entire invasion was a disastrous (moronic) mistake. All that was required was a face saving way to avoid responsibility for once having believed Iraq was a danger. After all, many of the leading lights of the "left" including John Kerry, Bill & Hillary Clinton, et al, had been on record in the 90s saying that Saddam was a danger. The Democrats overwhelmingly supported Iraq regime change when it was politically expedient but once the War proved to be more difficult than expected, a way out was needed. The important thing to remember is that for the "left" the content of their ideas never matters as much as the function of their ideas. Once an idea no longer serves to support their sense of their innate superiority, it can be easily abandoned. ...

Today's New York Times November surprise is another attack on the stupidity of the Bush administration. The article, U.S. Web Archive Is Said to Reveal a Nuclear Primer, discusses the archive set up by the government, much supported by the Neoconservative Blogosphere, to facilitate the translation of millions of documents taken from Saddam's Iraq:

Last March, the federal government set up a Web site to make public a vast archive of Iraqi documents captured during the war. The Bush administration did so under pressure from Congressional Republicans who had said they hoped to "leverage the Internet" to find new evidence of the prewar dangers posed by Saddam Hussein.


John Stephenson has a terrific round-up of responses and links. He points out the truly astounding revelation that the Times prints with no trace of irony:

Among the dozens of documents in English were Iraqi reports written in the 1990s and in 2002 for United Nations inspectors in charge of making sure Iraq had abandoned its unconventional arms programs after the Persian Gulf war. Experts say that at the time, Mr. Hussein's scientists were on the verge of building an atom bomb, as little as a year away.


If you read this story from the point of view of seeking information you might be surprised that the Times reveals such explosive facts which one might expect to help the Republicans next week. Yet if you realize that the goal of printing the story is to frame the Bush administration as stupid and incompetent, so that their opponents, a group of which the Times is a charter member, can maintain the belief in their own intellectual superiority, the contradiction evaporates. To the "left" the story is their wisdom and the "right's" stupidity; they are so sophisticated they don't even see how they discredit themselves.

More here. See also Dr Sanity for some good comments on Leftist narcissism. I have been commenting on Leftist narcissism since 1990

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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4 November, 2006

BOORTZ ON ONE DANGER OF A DEMOCRAT CONGRESS

(From a comment of Nov. 1st.)

Democrats will tell you that they only want to raise taxes on the so-called "rich." Nancy Pelosi will probably come up with some figure in the $200,000 or $250,000 range to describe "rich" when she and her Democrat pals start to work on their tax increase plans. But here's a warning. If you happen to fall below that "rich" category, you're in their crosshairs as well. They have various schemes in the works to put you smack in the middle of the "rich" category, and thus set you up for some pretty substantial tax increases. One such scheme targets homeowners. It's called "imputed income," and its a brilliant and devious idea on how to tax your home ownership. Here's how it works.

Let's say that you've owned your home for about 20 years. For 20 years your home has been appreciating in value ... big time. Your monthly payments on that home are about $550 a month. Remember, it's a 20-year-old loan made when the cost of your home was much, much less. There isn't much of a home mortgage tax deduction left at this point since you almost have the home paid off, and the bulk of your payments go to principal instead of interest.

The very fact that you're living in such a nice home, and paying so little, attracts the interest of Democrats. They know that there are a lot of people in your neighborhood that paid a lot more for their homes than you did, and their mortgage payments are a lot higher. Not only that, but there are other people renting homes in your neighborhood and they're paying much more than you are every month. It's obvious that you're enjoying some great economic benefit due to the fact that you've owned your home for so long and your payments are so low. Well, where there's an economic benefit, there must be a tax!

Enter the concept of imputed income! Under this wonderful plan, first floated by Clinton Democrats before the voter revolution of 1994, the government would figure out how much your home would rent for every month. To do this they would use all of that census data they've gathered, plus any information that they can develop on current sale and rental prices up and down your street.

Let's say that the government --- the IRS, if you will --- determines that your home would rent for $3,250 a month. That would add up to $39,000 a year. But the IRS discovers that you're only paying $550 a month, or $6,600 a year in rent. Well, there's that economic benefit you're enjoying by virtue of your long-term home ownership. The economic benefit of your home ownership is the difference between the $39,000 you should be paying to live there, and the $6,600 you're actually paying. Do the math. You're getting away with $32,400 every year in non-taxed economic benefits!

The Democrat plan is simple. Just take that $32,400 and add it to your taxable income on your next tax return. Then you get the privilege of paying income taxes to the federal government on the economic benefit you derive from your long-term home ownership. The IRS has "evened the playing field" in your neighborhood ... so to speak. Your neighbors had to pay taxes on the full $39,000 they're paying to live down the street ... now you're having to do the same. After all ... it's only fair, right!

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Brookes News Update

The American economy, recession and the housing boom: The idea that a housing slowdown could cause a recession does not deserve any serious consideration. The housing-recession idea assumes that instead of spending on real estate consumers will increase their cash balances which will reduce aggregate spending and so bring on a recession
Center for Defense Information tries to subvert US security: The anti-American Center for Defense Information demands that President Bush put America at the mercy of any lunatic regime that has nuclear tipped missiles. Which raises the question: Why do these so-called Americans hate their country?
The H. R. Nicholls Society torpedoes the case for deregulated labour markets: It isn't generally known that tackling the ACTU's researchers and media allies is like using a shotgun to shoot fish in a barrel. So why does the H. R. Nicholls Society insist on firing blanks?
Iraq is not lost: The US military and civilian leadership team in Iraq right now is as good as it has been. What needs to change, and change right now, are the operational and tactical means and methods we use to get to the strategic goals
Mainstream economics' cul de sac: The whole concept of the economy apart from individuals is not valid. In other words there is no such thing as the economy which can be moved by the government and the central bank

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ELSEWHERE

SCOTUS case: Are jury awards too high? "Jesse Williams smoked two packs of cigarettes a day for 45 years. Following his death in 1997 after being diagnosed with lung cancer, his wife, Mayola, sued the Philip Morris tobacco company seeking $100 million in punitive damages. The Oregon jury that heard her case rejected the $100 million request. Instead, it awarded her $79.5 million. Tuesday, the case arrives at the US Supreme Court where lawyers for Philip Morris are asking the justices to strike down the punitive damage award as constitutionally excessive and fundamentally unfair. The case, Philip Morris v. Mayola Williams, is being closely watched to see whether a majority of justices are willing to issue strict guidelines to identify when a punitive damage award is unconstitutionally excessive."

Number of federal subsidy programs is soaring: "The proliferation of special interest spending in the federal budget in recent years has created much waste and corruption. Politicians have helped special interests while helping themselves. But the main problem has not been that politicians have their hands in the cookie jar; it is that the cookie jar has grown so large, says Chris Edwards, director of Tax Policy Studies, Cato Institute."

Shortages, bloody shortages: "It seems that here in Romania -- the home of Vlad Dracula -- our hospitals are running out of blood. The number of people volunteering to donate blood has declined steadily in recent years. Health-care professionals fear that joining the European Union will bring crisis-level blood shortages. Why? European regulations forbid any kind of remuneration for this service."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

****************************



3 November, 2006

V.D. HANSON ON KERRY:

Kerry surely must be one of the saddest Democratic liabilities around. Some afterthoughts about his latest gaffe, which is one of those rare glimpses into an entire troubled ideology:

(1) How could John Kerry, born into privilege, and then marrying and divorcing and marrying out of and back into greater inherited wealth, lecture anyone at a city college about the ingredients for success in America? If he were to give personal advice about making it, it would have to be to marry rich women. Nothing he has accomplished as a senator or candidate reveals either much natural intelligence or singular education. Today, Democrats must be wondering why they have embraced an overrated empty suit, and ostracized a real talent like Joe Lieberman.

(2) How could Kerry possibly claim that he was thinking of the uneducated in the context of George Bush, who, after all, went to Harvard and Yale?

(3) Some of the brightest and most educated Americans are not only in the military, but veterans of Iraq. Two of the best educated minds I have met-Col. Bill Hix and Lt. Col. Chris Gibson, both Hoover Security Fellows-were both Iraqi veterans. What is striking about visiting Iraq is the wealth of talent there, from privates to generals. Without being gratuitously cruel, the problem of mediocrity is not in the ranks of the military, but on our university campuses, where half-educated professors and non-serious students killing time are ubiquitous. Personally, I'd wager the intelligence of a Marine Corps private any day over the average D.C. journalist. Every naval officer I met at the USNA, without exception, seemed brighter than John Kerry, whose "brilliance", after all, has managed to offend millions of voters on the eve of a pivotal election. If the Democrats lose, it will be almost painful to watch the recriminations against Kerry fly.

(4) This is not the first, but third, time he has denigrated soldiers in the middle of a war-and there is a systematic theme: John Kerry's assumed superior morality allows him to pass judgment from on high about supposedly lesser folk who become tools of a suspect military: thus we go from limb-loppers and Genghis' hordes to terrorists to dead-beats. The only constant is that the haughtiness is always delivered in the same sanctimonious, self-righteous, and patronizing tone.

(5) The mea culpa that Democrats are blaming the war and not the warriors is laughable after Sens. Durbin, Kennedy, and Kerry have collectively compared American soldiers to Nazis, Pol Pot's killers, Stalinists, terrorists, and Baathists.

(6) The problem is that Kerry is not just a senator, but the most recent presidential candidate of the Democratic Party, and thus in some sense, especially given the diminution of Howard Dean, the megaphone of the entire party.

(7) His pathetic clarification, as he blamed everyone from Tony Snow to Rush Limbaugh, displayed the same Al Gore derangement syndrome, and thus raises a larger question: what is it about George Bush that seems to reduce once sober and experienced liberal pros to infantile ranting?

(8) And why is the supposedly lame Bush so careful in speech, and the self-acclaimed geniuses like a Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, or Howard Dean serially spouting ever more stupidities? For all the Democrats' criticism of George Bush, I can't think of a modern President who has so infrequently put his foot in his public mouth, and, by the same token, can't think of any opposition that on the eve of elections seems to have an almost pathological death wish.

The Democrats should use this occasion to have an autopsy of Kerryism, or this strange new tony liberalism, that has turned noblisse oblige on its head. It used to be that millionaire FDRs and JFKs felt sympathy for those of the lower classes and wished to ensure that the hoi polloi had some shot at the American dream. But today's elite liberals-a Howard Dean, Al Gore, Ted Kennedy, George Soros, Ted Turner-love the high life and playact at being leftists simply because they are already insulated from the effects of their own nostrums that always come at someone poorer's expense while providing them some sort of psychological relief from guilt. Poor Harry Truman must be turning over in his grave-from bourbon, cigars, and poker to wind-surfing and L.L. Bean costume of the day says it all.

Source

Michael Medved and Taranto also have some good comments about what Kerry's remark revealed. And VP Cheney on Kerry's comments about studying and Iraq: "He was for the joke before he was against it".

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ELSEWHERE

Looming Court vacancies: Reason enough to vote: "Conservatives who contemplate sitting out the November 7 elections should quickly consider the number five. Five -- that is how many U.S. Supreme Court Justices will reach age 70 or older between this November 7 and the next nationwide election in November 2008. John Paul Stevens, the eldest justice, is currently 86. He'll be almost 89 before the next President is inaugurated, and statistics alone augur for a vacancy in his seat."

Scots want independence: "The majority of Scots favour breaking away from the rest of the UK and embracing independence, according to a poll on the eve of the 300th anniversary of the Act of Union between Scotland and England. The ICM poll showed support for Scottish independence running at 51 per cent, the first time since 1998, the year before devolution, that support for separation has passed the 50 per cent mark. Only 39 per cent of Scots are for the status quo, and 10 per cent said that they did not know whether they wanted independence, according to the poll of 1,000 voters north of the Border.

Youths challenge the French state: "Symbols of the French state, including policemen, firemen and postmen, are under intensified attack from disaffected youths as the country faces the worst race relations crisis in its history. Hardly a night passes without gangs - many of them from immigrant families - attacking police cars, buses and emergency rescue teams. Yesterday, the weekly magazine Le Nouvel Observateur published a confidential report drawn up by a public service trade union, the CGT, containing scores of eye-witness accounts of brutal attacks on public servants who work in the worst suburbs, or "banlieues", from gas board workers to staff from the electricity company. Its publication follows the revelation that attacks on police have soared this year, with some 14 a day, and a growing number of incidents in which officers have been lured into ambushes."

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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2 November, 2006

McCain replies to the "patriot" who went close to becoming President

John Kerry gave some advice to students recently, reflecting his long-standing contempt for America's military:

"You know, education, if you make the most of it, if you study hard and you do your homework, and you make an effort to be smart, uh, you, you can do well. If you don't, you get stuck in Iraq."


I liked Senator McCain's reply:

"Senator Kerry owes an apology to the many thousands of Americans serving in Iraq, who answered their country's call because they are patriots and not because of any deficiencies in their education. Americans from all backgrounds, well off and less fortunate, with high school diplomas and graduate degrees, take seriously their duty to our country, and risk their lives today to defend the rest of us in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere. They all deserve our respect and deepest gratitude for their service. The suggestion that only the least educated Americans would agree to serve in the military and fight in Iraq, is an insult to every soldier serving in combat, and should deeply offend any American with an ounce of appreciation for what they suffer and risk so that the rest of us can sleep more comfortably at night. Without them, we wouldn't live in a country where people securely possess all their God-given rights, including the right to express insensitive, ill-considered and uninformed remarks."


Jeff Jacoby has some background about Kerry's "sense of humor". There is also an amusing theory here about what was behind the latest Kerry gem. Was it that devious Karl Rove again?

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THE NEED FOR AN ENGLISH PARLIAMENT



Devolution has not - as its cheer-leaders endlessly proclaimed- strengthened the Union. It is weakening it. In Scotland, the clamour for full independence grows apace, while in Wales, the Assembly in Cardiff is hungry for greater power - and is getting it. Meanwhile, the 49 million people who live in that neglected corner of the United Kingdom called England face a yawning democratic deficit. This slumbering giant has yet to be particularly exercised by the intrinsically unfair nature of New Labour's half-cocked constitutional settlement.

Scottish and Welsh MPs can vote on matters affecting English constituencies, while English MPs have no such reciprocal rights over what happens in Scotland and Wales. This potential instability needs to be addressed now. If there is any "unfinished business" in New Labour's constitutional reforms, it is giving the English greater control over their affairs. Specifically English laws ought to be dealt with by English MPs - just as the Scottish Parliament deals exclusively with Scottish measures and the Welsh Assembly, in the new powers it gained in July, deals with Welsh matters.

More here. See also here

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ELSEWHERE

There is a real lulu up on my FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC blog today.

Conservatives REALLY care: "Syracuse University professor Arthur C. Brooks is about to become the darling of the religious right wing in America — and it’s making him nervous. The child of academics, raised in a liberal household and educated in the liberal arts, Brooks has written a book that concludes religious conservatives donate far more money than secular liberals to all sorts of charitable activities, irrespective of income. In the book, to be released next month, he cites extensive data analysis to demonstrate that values advocated by conservatives — from church attendance to two-parent families to the Protestant work ethic and a distaste for government-funded social services — make conservatives more generous than liberals."

EU gloom: "The European Union will become older, poorer and increasingly vulnerable to wide-scale immigration from its neighbours, according to a new European Defence Agency report. The agency also highlights the problems of increasing unemployment and desertification in its 32-page "long-term vision" for European defence needs which will be presented to EU defence ministers meeting in Finland on Tuesday. The document, described by one diplomat as "pretty bleak", is the result of a year's work identifying the main trends for EU member nations and their defence needs. The overall picture is of an aging, less prosperous Europe surrounded by regions-Africa, Middle East, Russia-"which may be struggling to cope with the consequences of globalisation".

Religious Left hates low prices for the poor: "The Rev. Dr. William Jarvis Johnson was part of a successful effort to halt plans to open a Wal-Mart Supercenter in Inglewood in 2004. Now he works for Wal-Mart Watch, a national organization that is pushing the mega-retailer to offer better wages and benefits for its employees across the country. "Working on the fight in Inglewood, I saw just how widespread Wal-Mart devastates communities," Johnson said. Johnson is part of a burgeoning movement of religious leaders who are leading grass-roots efforts to aid struggling workers and their families. He is one of dozens of clergy of all denominations working together as Clergy & Laity United for Economic Justice, whose members met last week in San Francisco."

MSM fading away: "The Audit Bureau of Circulations FAS-FAX report for the six-month period ending September 2006 released this morning confirmed yet again that major metros are struggling to show growth. The losses are steep while the gains are meager. This is the fourth consecutive semi-annual report to register a severe drop in daily circulation and — perhaps more troubling to the industry — Sunday copies. While the estimated decline 2.5% for daily circulation for all reporting papers may seem negligible, consider that in years past that decrease averaged around 1%. Sunday, considered the industry’s bread-and-butter, showed even steeper losses, with a decline of 3%".

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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1 November, 2006

RECENT ARTICLES UP ON ICJS

What a load of Goebbels
Time's up for a recalcitrant sheik
Islam's gender crisis
No, there are no excuses for anti-Semitic violence
Ex-jihadist seeks Islam's Martin Luther
Letter to the DPP on "Jihad Jack"
First it was the ABC, now senator has new target
We are biased, admit the stars of BBC News
Multicultural madness needs such antidotes
BBC mounts court fight to keep "critical" report secret
ABC sets new editorial benchmarks
Stamping out bias at the ABC
If ABC stands for Applying Better Control, it's not enough
New ABC boss vows no more bias
ABC shows to face tougher guidelines
Hard men turn to Islam to cope with jail
Prison Jihad?
Muslims must both denounce, renounce their violent hadiths
Agenda OF Islam - a war between civilisations
Not what it was, but what it does

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ELSEWHERE

Pope lectures Irish bishops: "Denouncing cases of clerical sex abuse as "egregious crimes", Pope Benedict has told Irish bishops that they must find out the truth, seek justice and do whatever is necessary to prevent abuse from occurring again. Meeting with Irish bishops on an ad limina visit to Rome, Pope Benedict said the crimes had caused deep wounds, ABC News reports. Bishops must find out the truth, seek justice and do whatever was necessary to prevent abuse happening again, he said... The Irish Church is reeling from more than 100 allegations of child sexual abuse by 26 priests in the western Fern diocese between 1962 and 2002. More than 5,000 complaints have been registered and more than $330 million has been payed out in compensation, an AFP report added."

Ohio to enshrine ignorance in its constitution: "Among the many ballot issues facing Ohio voters this November is a proposal to enshrine the minimum wage in the state constitution. The so-called "Ohio Fair Wage Amendment," a.k.a. "Issue Two," would amend the Ohio constitution to increase the state minimum wage to $6.85 in 2007, and then index the minimum wage to inflation thereafter. Additional provisions in the 1,000-word proposal would impose new record-keeping requirements on employers and facilitate class-action litigation. Ohio already suffers from an unfavorable business climate. Passing Issue Two would make it much worse. The economic case against a minimum wage increase is well known. Raising the minimum wage slows job growth by increasing the cost of labor. It is a basic economic truth that when the price of something goes up, the amount demanded declines. So, when the government mandates higher wages, unemployment rises as a direct result. Those workers who keep their jobs may earn more, but this comes at the expense of those who are left without jobs.... Among the forces behind Issue Two are labor unions and groups that could be referred to as the "religious left."

Not deaf enough: "The board of trustees of the nation's premier school for the deaf voted Sunday to terminate the appointment of the incoming president, former provost Jane Fernandes. The vote at Gallaudet University came after a month of protests by students and faculty members. ''Although undoubtedly there will be some members of the community who have differing views on the meaning of this decision, we believe that it is a necessity at this point,'' the board said. Protesters had said Fernandes, 50, was a divisive and ineffective leader. Fernandes said that some people do not consider her ''deaf enough'' because she didn't learn to use American Sign Language until she was in her 20s."

"Noble savages" thank their Leftist supporter: "South African Nobel laureate for literature Nadine Gordimer was robbed and locked in a store room by thieves who assaulted her in her home, police said Saturday. Police Sergeant Sanku Tsunke said Gordimer, 83, did not sustain serious injuries when she was assaulted on Thursday for refusing to hand over her wedding ring. He said the Gordimer was robbed of cash and jewelry when three unknown men gained entrance to her home at about 10.30am on Thursday. Gordimer, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1991, is noted for her novels and short stories about the inhumanity of apartheid."

Soros the psychopath: "Chilling: That's the only word for the glimpse into the mind of George Soros provided by Steve Croft of 60 Minutes in an interview broadcast last night. Steve Gilbert of Sweetness & Light does an excellent job of highlighting and commenting on a partial transcript of the interview, concerning Soros' behavior during the Holocaust in Hungary, when he was a 14 year old Jewish boy posing as a Christian".

Why one Democrat likes illegals: "Nancy Pelosi has a special affection for illegal aliens, no doubt thinking how liberalized entry for poor migrant workers could help in staffing the non-union vineyards that Pelosi and her multi-millionaire husband own in Napa Valley. Pelosi, the ardent advocate for labor causes, apparently has chosen not to hire members of the United Farm Workers to pick her vineyard grapes while at the same time she has chosen to sell those grapes to non-union wineries. She has an obvious conflict of interest every time that she votes on an immigration security bill because she and her husband personally benefit from the influx of cheap labor without whom "[N]ot one bottle of wine would get made here," according to a farm worker advocate"

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and EYE ON BRITAIN. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here).

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"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.

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