July 2005 to May 2008
MAY 29, 2008
A Conservative Declaratoin of Independence
Conservatives Must Rebuild the GOP: "Liberalism is on the ascendancy in the Republican Party, and that will lead to defeat eventually. That's when we rebuild it."
McClellan Used by Liberals; Left-Wing Publisher Tied to Soros
Czech President Vaclav Klaus: ‘Environmentalism As Bad As Communism’
MAY 28, 2008
Rush Limbaugh Explains What Happens to Some Republicans After They Go to the District of Corruption
First Hour Second Hour Third Hour
* * *
Mascot Politics by Dr. Thomas Sowell
How long will Negroes continue to be led by the nose by liberal Democrats?
MAY 27, 2008
In the U.S. Senate the Guilty Repeat Their Interrogation of the Innocent
Dr. Reisman describes the travesty of ignorant and dishonest United States Senators heaping blame on others for the consequences of their own reckless and destructive policies.
* * *
U.S. Scores Astounding Technological Achievement
JPL, NASA Celebrate Perfect Mars Landing
Phoenix Lander Begins Sending Pictures from Planet's Surface
American Flag and mini-DVD attached to deck
of Phoenix Mars Lander planet probe
Photos from Phoenix Mars Lander
MAY 25, 2008
Al-Qa'ida in Iraq 'has never been closer to defeat'
The "Surge" Was Succcessful, but the Victory is Still Fragile
Violence in Iraq has fallen to its lowest level in more than four years
MAY 13, 2008
MAY 11, 2008
Will Beijing and Riyadh call the shots on ailing dollar's future?
Oops! U.S. says captured man is not al Qaeda in Iraq leader
MAY 9, 2008
Left-Wing Talk Radio Host Bernie Ward Admits to Distributing Child Porn; Will Go to Prison
Iraqi Army Says Iraqi Al-Qaida Leader Arrested
* * *
Meahwhile, back in U.S. Politics, it's One Down, Two To Go
by Ann Coulter
MAY 1, 2008
Somali Al Qaeda Leader Killed In Airstrike
Ten Others Die As House Is Struck By Missile
FEBRUARY 16, 2008
Saddam had WMD and WMD Programs
by Melvin Young
I hope that most of you didn't buy into the nonsense that Saddam didn't have WMD's. He gassed thousands of Kurds just prior to Desert Storm. He certainly had the capability and the equipment and most of it was buried in the mass desert that comprises most of Iraq. Coalition troops in Iraq have found mustard gas, chlorine gas, and the terrorist have recovered some of Saddam's buried or otherwise hidden weapons and used chlorine gas against our soldiers and the Iraqi people.
Saudi Arabia and Israel, among others, were so terrified of Saddam's potential capability to use WMD's such as chemical weapons with SCUD missiles that they issued hundreds of thousands of gas masks to their populations as well as coalition troops being equipped with chemical weapons protection suits. But then, the lack of WMD's by Saddam is just one of the BIG LIES of the Democrats.
Here is another confirmation that Saddam had or was working hard to rebuild his WMD's.
Saddam Hussein, chemical, biological, nuclear weapons
New report confirms WMD fears in Iraq were legitimate
Bush claims vindicated.
By OnTheWeb: Chad Groening
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Robert Spencer, one of the nation’s leading experts on the Islamic religion, says he doesn’t understand why the Bush administration has not jumped on a recent report that confirms former dictator Saddam Hussein intended to reconstitute his weapons of mass destruction.
Recently CBS’s 60 Minutes aired an interview with George Piro, a Lebanese-born FBI agent, who debriefed Saddam Hussein following his capture in December 2003. Piro was able to get Hussein to admit that while he did not have active WMD programs in 2003, he wanted to reconstitute all of them—chemical, biological, and even nuclear.
Robert Spencer, director of Jihad Watch, says the White House should be all over this story. “It’s ironic really, that oddly enough the Bush administration—with so much to lose and so much damage to its credibility over the years because of these allegations—has not jumped on these kinds of reports and made sure that they came to the broadest audience possible,” he ponders.
The Islamic expert says Piro’s comments ought to debunk the critics who say the Iraq invasion had nothing to do with the global war on Islamic terrorism. “It’s clear that it’s all part of the same thing, that there is the Jihad ideology that is universal and is held by those in Iraq as well as so many others around the world—and that’s part of a larger struggle,” argues Spencer.
According to Spencer, a “great deal” of evidence indicates clearly that Saddam Hussein was doing exactly what the Bush administration and others—some outside the administration—thought he was doing in 2002 and 2003.
This piece is in Category: War on Terrorism
* * *Is the Establishment Democrat media beginning to grudgingly acknowledge progress in Iraq?
Attacks in Baghdad fall 80 percent: Iraq military
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Attacks by insurgents and rival sectarian militias have fallen up to 80 percent in Baghdad and concrete blast walls that divide the capital could soon be removed, a senior Iraqi military official said on Saturday.Lieutenant-General Abboud Qanbar said the success of a year-long clampdown named "Operation Imposing Law" had reined in the savage violence between majority Shi'ites and minority Sunni Arabs dominant under Saddam Hussein."In a time when you could hear nothing but explosions, gunfire and the screams of mothers and fathers and sons, and see bodies that were burned and dismembered, the people of Baghdad were awaiting Operation Imposing Law," Qanbar told reporters.Qanbar pointed to the number of dead bodies turning up on the capital's streets as an indicator of success.In the six weeks to the end of 2006, an average of 43 bodies were found dumped in the city each day as fierce sectarian fighting threatened to turn into full-scale civil war.That figure fell to four a day in 2008, in the period up to February 12, said Qanbar, who heads the Baghdad security operation. "Various enemy activities" had fallen by between 75 and 80 percent since the security plan was implemented, he said.To demonstrate how life had improved, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki toured parts of the city on Saturday, visiting Iraqi forces and checkpoints. "He wanted ... to send a message to the terrorists that security in Baghdad is prevailing now," one official said.Central to the success has been the erection of 12-foot (3.5-meter) high concrete walls that snake across the city. The walls were designed to stop car bombings blamed on al Qaeda that turned markets and open areas into killing fields. Qanbar said he hoped the walls could be taken down "in the coming months" and predicted the improved situation in Baghdad would translate to greater security elsewhere.The U.S. military says attacks have fallen across Iraq by 60 percent since June on the back of security clampdowns and the deployment of 30,000 extra American troops.FRAGILE RELATIONSHIPVital to the fall in violence was also a decision by Sunni Arab tribal leaders to turn against Sunni Islamist al Qaeda in late 2006 and form neighborhood security units, which man checkpoints and provide tips on militant hideouts. However, their relationship with Iraqi authorities remains tense. The Shi'ite-led government is wary of the units, called "concerned local citizens" (CLCs) by the U.S. military and whose ranks includes former Sunni Arab insurgents."Everyone should know, that the official security forces represent the country. And it is the one side that has the right to bear arms and impose security," Qanbar said.In a sign of the tensions, one CLC group said it was suspending its activities after three members were killed in an incident near the town of Jurf al-Sukr, south of Baghdad. The unit blamed American soldiers for Friday's deaths. The U.S. military said attack helicopters had responded with rockets after security forces came under small-arms fire. It said the incident was under investigation but gave no further details. The CLCs number some 80,000 mainly Sunni Arabs. Qanbar said Baghdad was working on compensating victims of mistakes by the Iraqi army and multi-national forces in Iraq.While Iraqi and U.S. officials laud the security gains, humanitarian groups say it is still too early to encourage around 2 million refugees who fled Iraq to return home. "The plight of Iraqi refugees will end with national reconciliation,
" the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, Antonio Guterres, told reporters during a visit to Baghdad.
Al Qaeda in Near Collapse in Iraq;
Establishmetn Media Ignores or Plays Down the Progress
It seems the surge has worked well despite Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats still using their old, false talking points about it not working. The truth is that although there is still much danger and many problemS in Iraq, stability and peace and relative freedom are gradually emerging in Iraq as the forces of hate, violence, and intolerance are on the retreat. Pelosi is lying for partisan political reasons, hoping that enough Americans are not paying attentoin to what's going on.
Feb 11, 2008
* * *
Top psychiatrist concludes
liberals are clinically nuts!
Makes case leftism is a mental disorder
February 15, 2008
© 2008 WorldNetDaily
WASHINGTON – Just when liberals thought it was safe to start identifying themselves as such, an acclaimed, veteran psychiatrist is making the case that the ideology motivating them is actually a mental disorder.
"Based on strikingly irrational beliefs and emotions, modern liberals relentlessly undermine the most important principles on which our freedoms were founded," says Dr. Lyle Rossiter, author of the new book, "The Liberal Mind: The Psychological Causes of Political Madness." "Like spoiled, angry children, they rebel against the normal responsibilities of adulthood and demand that a parental government meet their needs from cradle to grave."
While political activists on the other side of the spectrum have made similar observations, Rossiter boasts professional credentials and a life virtually free of activism and links to "the vast right-wing conspiracy."
For more than 35 years he has diagnosed and treated more than 1,500 patients as a board-certified clinical psychiatrist and examined more than 2,700 civil and criminal cases as a board-certified forensic psychiatrist. He received his medical and psychiatric training at the University of Chicago.
Rossiter says the kind of liberalism being displayed by the two major candidates for the Democratic Party presidential nomination can only be understood as a psychological disorder
"A social scientist who understands human nature will not dismiss the vital roles of free choice, voluntary cooperation and moral integrity – as liberals do," he says. "A political leader who understands human nature will not ignore individual differences in talent, drive, personal appeal and work ethic, and then try to impose economic and social equality on the population – as liberals do. And a legislator who understands human nature will not create an environment of rules which over-regulates and over-taxes the nation's citizens, corrupts their character and reduces them to wards of the state – as liberals do."
Dr. Rossiter says the liberal agenda preys on weakness and feelings of inferiority in the population by:
creating and reinforcing perceptions of victimization;
satisfying infantile claims to entitlement, indulgence and compensation;
augmenting primitive feelings of envy;
rejecting the sovereignty of the individual, subordinating him to the will of the government.
"The roots of liberalism – and its associated madness – can be clearly identified by understanding how children develop from infancy to adulthood and how distorted development produces the irrational beliefs of the liberal mind," he says. "When the modern liberal mind whines about imaginary victims, rages against imaginary villains and seeks above all else to run the lives of persons competent to run their own lives, the neurosis of the liberal mind becomes painfully obvious."
OCTOBER 25, 2007
LIBERTARIANISM by John Hospers
After more than 35 years the phenomenal classic on the American libertarian philosophy is now back in print and available to a new generation of readers interested in the free-market alternative to socialism and "liberalism" in the United States. In the tradition of Bastiat, Hazlitt, von Mises, and Rand, Prof. Hospers dispatches one Big-Government cliché and fallacy after another in clear and understandable English. An important resource in the arsenal of liberty, this 2007 edition includes a new preface by the author.
Click on the picture above to order copies for friends, students, relatives, Congresscritters, etc. The book that launched a movement can inspire us all again in the struggle to recapture the spirit of American freedom under law.
OCTOBER 23, 2007
Sen. Reid Fails Rush Character Assassination
By: David Limbaugh
The dirty little secret about Sen. Harry Reid's failed character assassination attempt against my brother, Rush Limbaugh, is just how contrived the Senate Democrats' outrage was about the fraudulent allegation that Rush had impugned certain soldiers.
I won't rehash the facts in detail, but essentially, Rush was falsely accused of calling troops who had expressed opposition to the Iraq war "phony soldiers."
Not only was Rush not criticizing soldiers, but he was defending soldiers who had been criticized by pretend Iraq war veterans who had lied about their combat service in Iraq to gain credibility when they accused the actual soldiers there of unspeakable atrocities.
If Reid's true instinct was to defend soldiers, he would have agreed with Rush's criticism of the fake soldiers who lied about the real ones. He would have shared Rush's outrage and demanded strict proof.
Sadly, the left all too often has unquestioningly accepted such horrible allegations against our soldiers. Sen. Dick Durbin assumed the worst of our soldiers in Guantanamo. Sen. John Kerry disseminated lies about our troops raiding Iraqi homes and assaulting civilian women and children. And Rep. John Murtha prejudged Marines guilty of murdering innocent civilians before they had even told their side of the story, much less been tried for the alleged crimes.
But did liberals express outrage against Durbin, Kerry, or Murtha? No. They vigorously defended them. According to the loony left, the foreign-policy views of (leftist) veterans are sacrosanct and above criticism, even when they are themselves falsely impugning other soldiers. Obviously, the left's loyalty isn't to soldiers — it's only to outspoken leftist soldiers.
MSNBC's Chris Matthews demonstrated this principle in graphic detail when he allowed his "Hardball" guests Graham Nash and David Crosby to go unchallenged when they maliciously claimed our troops were "killing hundreds of thousands of Iraqis."
Nor did anyone else on the left — as far as I know — take Matthews to task for nodding with approval as these rockers slandered our soldiers as slaughterers of innocent women and children.
And when Harry Reid and his leftist colleagues, in the name of defending the honor of our troops, used the Senate floor and stationery to defame Rush with false allegations, no liberals had the intellectual honesty to admit the left has made a pastime out of slandering our soldiers. They just piled on with phony indignation.
Though Reid and his boys were lying every step of the way, there's a reason those in their gullible base were so quick to leap to false conclusions about Rush's purely innocuous statements and believe those lies: psychological projection.
While Rush would never consider condemning a soldier fighting to defend the United States, irrespective of his political views, the left often treats one's political views as disqualifying him from legitimacy as a member of a certain group.
Consider how they treat blacks, like Clarence Thomas or Condoleezza Rice, who don't subscribe to their leftist agenda. The left holds itself out as the savior of African Americans yet often treats with scorn conservative blacks.
To them, Thomas and Rice aren't authentic blacks but Uncle Toms who not only aren't entitled to protection against racial insensitivity but deserve to be subjected to it, as with the vulgar leftist racist cartoons depicting Condi Rice as a thick-lipped Aunt Jemima. Liberals didn't hold their fellow travelers accountable for those racist caricatures because liberals aren't champions of black people — they're only champions of those blacks who subscribe to their political agenda and who will help keep them in power.
But I digress. If Harry Reid et al., wanted to be taken seriously with their manufactured fable about Rush, they shouldn't have feigned outrage at him for allegedly criticizing soldiers. That just doesn't pass the laugh test.
Then again, Reid knows he can get away with such abominable behavior because no lie is too low if it advances the cause — and there is no better cause in their minds than destroying their most powerful nemesis, Rush.
For absolute proof of this, you need look no further than a recent New York Times story reporting Reid's thoroughly discredited lies about Rush as if they were fact. The Times also reported as legitimate Reid's preposterous ploy to pretend he had been working in concert with Rush's radio syndication partners to maximize proceeds from Rush's unilateral auctioning of Reid's letter attempting to smear him. This, even though everyone knows the only reason the letter brought more than $2.1 million (plus Rush's match) was that it memorializes and showcases Harry Reid's shameful abuse of power.
Alas, not everyone is as credulous as Reid would hope, as his cratering poll numbers in Nevada reveal. From what I hear, those aren't phony numbers.
David Limbaugh is a writer, author, and attorney. He is the brother of Rush Limbaugh. His book "Bankrupt: The Intellectual and Moral Bankruptcy of Today's Democratic Party" (Regnery) was just released in paperback. To find out more about David Limbaugh, please visit his Web site at www.davidlimbaugh.com.
© 2007 Creator's Syndicate Inc.
* * *
ISLAMO-FASCISM AWARENESS WEEK
The Demonization of Women by Daivd Horowitz
* * *
A QUIZ FROM NEAL BOORTZ
AND NOW .. HOW ABOUT A LITTLE QUIZ?
A little history lesson: If you don't know the answer make your best guess. Answer all the questions before looking at the answers. Who said it?
1) "We're going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good."
A. Karl Marx
B. Adolph Hitler
C. Joseph Stalin
D. None of the above
2) "It's time for a new beginning, for an end to government of the few, by the few, and for the few...and to replace it with shared responsibility for shared prosperity."
C. Idi Amin
D. None of the Above
3) "(We)...can't just let business as usual go on, and that means something has to be taken away from some people."
A. Nikita Khrushev
B. Jose f Goebbels
C. Boris Yeltsin
D. None of the above
4) "We have to build a political consensus and that requires people to give up a little bit of their own...in order to create this common ground."
A. Mao Tse Dung
B. Hugo Chavez
C. Kim Jong Il
D. None of the above
5) "I certainly think the free-market has failed."
A. Karl Marx
D. None of the above
6) "I think it's time to send a clear message to what has become the most profitable sector in (the) entire economy that they are being watched."
C. Saddam Hussein
D. None of the above
(1) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 6/29/2004
(2) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 5/29/2007
(3) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 6/4/2007
(4) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 6/4/2007
(5) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 6/4/2007
(6) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 9/2/2005
* * *
HUCKABEE EXPOSED"Asked if he would support President Bush's veto of the budget-busting increase in the children's health care program SCHIP, (GOP presidential candidate Mike) Huckabee declined to say he would have issued a similar veto 'because there are going to be so many issues we've got to fight. And the political loss of that is going to be enormous.' Translation: When it comes to tough political fights on spending, don't look for a President Huckabee to be there."- John Fund of Political Diary, 10/10/07"Mike Huckabee continues to demonstrate his populist, anti-free market bent. Fresh from a debate in Michigan where he showed skepticism about free trade and President Bush's veto of a budget-busting health care bill, the former Arkansas governor has now embraced a mandatory cap on global-warming emissions."- John Fund of Political Diary, 10/16/07
* * *
OCTOBER 21, 2007
RUSH LIMBAUGH SHAMES HARRY REID AND SENATE DEMOCRATS
What Harry Reid and the Senate Democrats are desperately trying to obfuscate is that Rush Limbaugh correctly nailed them for using in their political propaganda some war critics who lied about their military service or combat history -- phony soldiers. Limbaugh, who has been a consistent supporter of America's soldiers and war veterans for many years (iincluding through large charitable donations) never said that any and all military personnel who disagree with the war in Iraq or the way it has been conducted were phony soliders. He was referring to Jessie Adam Macbeth and those like him who lied about their military experience in order to give themselves more credibility as "anti-war" critics of the Bush Administration. The Democrat leadership knows this very well, but they were counting on their cronies in the network news media to help make it appear that Rush had called all those who criticize the war in Iraq as "phony" soldiers.
But they are not getting away with it. Too many people listen to Rush's radio program and know what was said and the context in which it was said. The duplicitious Democrats cannot get away with attacking Limbaugh for referring to "phony soldiers" while at the same time pretend that the issue does not exist. Days before Rush Limbaugh mentioned the "phony soliders" issue, ABC News had already run a news story about . . . phony soliders! And not a peep came from Harry Reid and the Senate Democrats! The attack is on Rush Limbaugh because he has been so effective in the battle to expose the con games that "liberals" play. Senator Reid and 41 Senate Democrats signed a letter and sent it to the head of the network that syndicates Rush's radio program. The letter demanded that Rush "apologize" and be reprimanded.
Rush Limbaugh is way smarter than Harry Reid. He was able to obtain the actual letter (not a photocopy) that Reid and the 41 Senate Democrats signed, and Rush auctioned it on E-Bay for over $2.1 million! The money is going to the Marine Corps - Law Enforcement Foundaiton, which primarily renders aid to children of Marines or Federal law enforcement personnel who were killed on duty or died under extraordinary circumstances while serving our country at home or abroad. As promised, Rush has personally matched that amount -- $2.1 million of his own money -- to that charity -- and he has challenged Reid and the Democrat signers to match that amount as well. Weasel Harry Reid and his Democrat cosigners have been hoisted on their own petard. Their attack on Rush would appear to have backfired.
Rush Sells Reid's Attack Letter Against Limbaugh for $2.1 million! -- WND
Rush demands apology from Reid for false accusation.
* * *
FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF ATLAS SHRUGGED
Ayn Rand Fans Mark 50th Anniversary -- Orange County Register
Atlas Shrugged 50th Anniversary Celebrated in D.C. -- Atlas Society
The Influence of Atlas Shrugged -- Yaron Brook
'Atlas' at 50: Nothing to Shrug At -- Debi Ghate
* * *
Atlas Shrugged and Today's Healthcare Controversy
Irvine, CA--This month is the 50th anniversary of the publication of Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand's novel about a group of high achievers who rebel against a society that shackles and condemns them. Yaron Brook, executive director of the Ayn Rand Institute, heralded the book's relevance to today's cultural-political debate. "While Atlas is 50 years old, it contains many timeless truths that are just as relevant today as they were when it was first published.
"Take the realm of health care. Most Republicans and Democrats are proposing forms of socialized medicine--under euphemisms like 'universal health care,' 'national health insurance,' etc. Everyone talks about how to protect patient's 'right' to health care--but no one talks about the rights of the doctors that create this value. This is a deadly evasion that one of the characters in Ayn Rand's novel, Dr. Thomas Hendricks, an eminent surgeon who quits the field, eloquently explains in describing his decision:
'Do you know what it takes to perform a brain operation? Do you know the kind of skill it demands, and the years of passionate, merciless, excruciating devotion that go to acquire that skill? That was what I would not place at the disposal of men whose sole qualification to rule me was their capacity to spout the fraudulent generalities that got them elected to the privilege of enforcing their wishes at the point of a gun. I would not let them dictate the purpose for which my years of study had been spent, or the conditions of my work, or my choice of patients, or the amount of my reward. I observed that in all the discussions that preceded the enslavement of medicine, men discussed everything--except the desires of the doctors. Men considered only the "welfare" of the patients, with no thought for those who were to provide it. That a doctor should have any right, desire or choice in the matter, was regarded as irrelevant selfishness; his is not to choose, they said, only "to serve." . . . I have often wondered at the smugness with which people assert their right to enslave me, to control my work, to force my will, to violate my conscience, to stifle my mind--yet what is it that they expect to depend on, when they lie on an operating table under my hands?'
"Countless outstanding doctors have already fled the field because of the sort of government coercion Dr. Hendricks describes," said Dr. Brook. "Anyone who truly cares about the state of American medicine should learn from Ayn Rand's character: we must liberate the providers of medical services and protect their right to practice medicine on their own terms and as they judge best."
The Smearing of Clarence Thomas -- Thomas Sowell
* * *
Ann Coulter Strikes Back Against Her Left-Wing Critics -- NewsMax
"Liberal" Democrats and leftists in general want to use the power of Big Government to shut Ann Coulter up. Some are even resorting to the old canard of accusing her of "antisemitism"!
Classic Definition of a Republic -- Internet Encyclopedia
You'd be surprised how many people believe a republic is a representative democracy.
OCTOBER 1, 2007
KEY AL QAEDA FIGURE KILLED IN IRAQ
U.S. Air Strike Kills Another Senior Leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq
MEANWHILE, ON THE POLITICAL FRONTLINES BACK HOME . . .
RUSH FIGHTS BACK AGAINST EXTREME LEFT'S SMEARS
Rush Sets Record Straight on the Phony "Phony Soldier" Story Video: Watch Rush's Challenge to Reid Right Here
• Rush's Challenge to Harry Reid: Say It to My Face
• This Proves Media Matters Wrong
• House GOP Introduces Resolution in Support of Rush Limbaugh
• Hillary Clinton Admits Involvement with Smear Outfit Media Matters
The Establishment "liberal" media clique is trying to obfuscate what Rush said about Jessie Adam Macbeth and those like him, but they are not getting away with it.
Officials of Corrupt Fundraising Group Linked to Hillary
* * *
Corrupt Dem Fundraiser/Money Launderer Hsu in Custody
A major Democrat scandal -- played down by the media.
Other Illicit Fundraising Scams Linked to Hillary
Why no major spotlight on these scandals from the Democrat news networks?
SEPTEMBER 6, 2007
BIG MEDIA CONTINUES TO COVER UP FOR THE CLINTONS, SANDY BERGER, ET AL
Hillary's run for White House blocking 'Path to 9/11' DVD? -- KFI-AM
John Ziegler Interview of Cyrus Nowrasteh -- KFI AM 640
SEPTEMBER 2, 2007
Budget Cuts Delay Boeing's Anti-Missile Laser on 747s
SEPTEMBER 1, 2007
Zogby Says Most Americans Believe Iraq War Not Lost: Press Says...Nothing -- News Busters
AUGUST 31, 2007
Report: Petraeus says Iraq surge is working
Contrary to the hopes of the Democrat partisans at Time magazine and the other house organs of the Democrat establishment -- and to the private chagrin of Pelosi and Reid -- the surge in Iraq is making significant headway against Al Qaeda and other reactionary destabilizers. But many goals and political reforms remain to be achieved.
Troop Surge Has Led to Reduction of Violence and Bombings in Iraq, Reports Petraeus -- Reuters
AUGUST 12, 2007
Huge Iraq Arms Deal Uncovered in Italy -- MyWayNews
The Clinton-China Connection -- Charles R. Smith
AUGUST 11, 2007
Shuttle Mission Overshadowed by Gash in Tiles -- AP
AUGUST 10, 2007
EXPOSING THE LATEST LIES OF THE NEW REPUBLIC MAGAZINE
by Ann Coulter
In their latest demonstration of how much they love the troops, liberals have produced yet another anti-war hoax.
The New Republic has been running "true war" stories from a brave, anonymous liberal penning dispatches from Iraq. The famed "Baghdad Diarist" described his comrades joyfully using Bradley fighting vehicles to crush stray dogs, mocking a female whose face had been blown off by an IED, and defacing Iraqi corpses by wearing skull parts on their own heads.
Various conservatives began questioning the plausibility of the anonymous diarist's account -- noting, for example, that Bradley vehicles don't "swerve," as the diarist claimed. The editor of The New Republic responded by attacking the skeptics' motives, complaining that some conservatives make "a living denying any bad news that emanates from Iraq."
But when that clever retort failed to quiet rumblings from the right wing, The New Republic finally revealed the "Baghdad Diarist" to be ... John Kerry! Actually it was Pvt. Scott Thomas Beauchamp, Democratic candidate for president circa 2028. (That gives him 20 years to learn to pronounce "Genghis.")
In revealing himself two weeks ago, Beauchamp lashed out at "people who have never served in Iraq." He said he was too busy fighting "an actual war" to participate in "an ideological battle that I never wanted to join."
He had tried to stay out of ideological battles by writing made-up articles in a national magazine claiming soldiers in Iraq had become callous beasts because of George Bush's war, killing to "secure the riches of the empire." Alas, this proved an ineffective method of keeping his head low. Beauchamp's next bid for privacy will be an attempt to host "The Price Is Right."
In response to Beauchamp's revelation that he was the "Baghdad Diarist," the military opened an investigation into his allegations. There was no corroboration for his stories, and Beauchamp promptly signed an affidavit admitting that every single thing he wrote in The New Republic was a lie.
According to The Weekly Standard's Michael Goldfarb -- who has led the charge of those who "make a living denying any bad news that emanates from Iraq" -- Maj. Steven F. Lamb, the deputy public affairs officer for Multi-National Division-Baghdad, said this of the Baghdad diarist:
"An investigation has been completed and the allegations made by Pvt. Beauchamp were found to be false. His platoon and company were interviewed and no one could substantiate the claims."
In response, The New Republic went into full Dan Rather loon mode. This astonishing post showed up on The New Republic Web site on Tuesday afternoon:
"A STATEMENT ON SCOTT THOMAS BEAUCHAMP:
"We've talked to military personnel directly involved in the events that Scott Thomas Beauchamp described, and they corroborated his account as detailed in our statement. When we called Army spokesman Maj. Steven F. Lamb and asked about an anonymously sourced allegation that Beauchamp had recanted his articles in a sworn statement, he told us, 'I have no knowledge of that.' He added, 'If someone is speaking anonymously (to The Weekly Standard), they are on their own.' When we pressed Lamb for details on the Army investigation, he told us, 'We don't go into the details of how we conduct our investigations.' -- The Editors"
It's good to see Mary Mapes is working again.
What on earth is going on? Either the military investigation found that Beauchamp lied or it didn't. Either military personnel corroborated stories of soldiers wearing skulls as crowns or they didn't. Either Army spokesman Maj. Steven Lamb gave a statement to The Weekly Standard or he didn't.
At the same time as The New Republic was posting the above statement, which completely contradicted The Weekly Standard's update, renowned right-wing news outlet ABC News confirmed that the military has concluded that Beauchamp was writing "fiction." ABC also quoted Goldfarb's account and said that Maj. Lamb reiterated his statement that Beauchamp's stories were false to ABC. The New York Times had the same story on Wednesday.
The New Republic has gone mad. Perhaps the magazine brought its former employee, fantasist Steven Glass, out of retirement. It's long past time for The New Republic to file for intellectual Chapter 7. Arthur Andersen was implicated in fewer frauds.
And we wonder how Democratic congressmen can lie about a vote they lost on the floor of the House -- captured on CSPAN for all the world to see -- changing the vote so that they win.
America's imminent victory in Iraq and safety from terrorist attacks at home is driving them all crazy
The War in Iraq, Libertarians, and Ron Paul
The war in Iraq issue has divided libertarians or has exposed divisions which were already there. I believe many libertarians and some conservatives sincerely oppose the war on essentially procedural grounds -- that the word "war" was not explicitly used in Congress's grant of military authority to the President in going into Iraq. Even though there is disagreement among constitutionalists about whether Congress's authorization amounted to a "real" declaration of war or not, this is at least an argument which tries to refer back to the Constitution and I understand it even if I do not necessarily agree with it. I see that as perhaps their strongest legitimate argument against the war in Iraq. It at least appears to be a libertarian or constitutionalist argument. (Yet some of the same people who claim this as their basis for opposing the war in Iraq nevertheless supported the war in Afghanistan, which had no explicit declaration of the word "war" from Congress either. Inconsistent constitutionalism, it seems to me.)
But I also believe many of the "anti-war" libertarians have accepted certain Democrat media talking points as the basis for their opposition, even though they are not true. They have absorbed the hate-Bush propaganda which is so ubiquitous in the media, especially Democrat Party establishment house organs such as NPR, NBC, ABC, CBS, Time magazine, Washington Post, L.A. Times, and the New York Times, just to name a few. Those who rely for their news and interpretations on such sources are apt to be misled, especially on the issue of the war in Iraq. Many Americans have been led to believe, for example, that Bush and Cheney "lied us into war" and that Scooter Libby exposed Valerie Plame as a "covert" CIA agent and that this was in revenge for her husband's claim that Saddam Hussein never sought "yellow cake" uranium in Africa. None of these claims of this scenario are true. The statements of Valerie Plame's husband, Joseph Wilson, have been shown to be without credibility. Libby was not the person who "outed" Valerie Plame (who was not a covert agent anyway). Yet, because most Americans get only "impressions" of news and generally get those impressions from watching television every night, the constant barrage of propaganda has caused many, including even some libertarians, to buy into this chain of false claims disseminated by anti-Bush partisans within the federal bureaucracy and their Democrat allies in the media.
A clash between the U.S. and Saddam Hussein was virtually inevitable and not avoidable in the long run. My position has been that the U.S. had little choice: either deal with Saddam Hussein and his military buildup now (ASAP) or have to fight him years later when confrontation could not be avoided any longer and when his forces would have been far stronger and more destructive in terms of weapons of mass destruction and alliances. That being my view, I'd rather see it done now and with Bush 43 as President rather than put it off when Saddam would have been more dangerous and when the U.S. President might be some doofus Democrat like Kerry or Gore or Hillary Clinton. Whatever mistakes the Bush Administration has made in the war against the jihadists, I am easily persuaded in my mind that a Democrat President would have done far worse. Despite my consistent opposition to President Bush's liberal policies on other issues, it is clear that things would be far worse if Kerry or Gore had been elected, especially with regard to foreign policy, national security, and defense. (Again, as I have said before, it's not that I think Bush is so good, but that the Democrat alternatives were so bad. Unfortunately, too many Americans still do not have a clue about how much damage Bill Clinton did as President to this country's national security and too many people continue to underestimate the extent of duplicity on the part of the current Democrat leadership.)
The U.S. (or anyone else for that matter) had both the legal and moral right to take down Saddam and his regime. In addition, it was in the geopolitical interests of the U.S. to do so. The Iran-Iraq War was long over. He had ceased to be an "ally" long ago. He was harboring anti-American terrorists including Zarqawi and Abu Nidal. (There is even evidence of terrorist training camps inside Iraq going back to the 1990s.) Intelligence from all over the world indicated Saddam's military buildup included weapons of mass destruction and programs for developing WMDs. He had already used WMDs against Iraqis, killing Kurds in great numbers. How would he use them in the future? Might some of them find their way into the hands of terrorists like those who attacked the U.S. on 09/11/01? Sadam had been properly slapped down by Bush 41 after his unprovoked aggression against neighboring Kuwait, with whom the U.S. had a defense agreement. Saddam continued to violate the terms of the ceasefire after that first Gulf War. Anyone who claims that the U.S. did not have a right to strike Saddam Hussein and curtail his military buildup in retaliation for his military actions and threats ignores what was happening or was just not paying attention.
Contrary to Democrat talking points and anti-Bush partisan political propaganda, the evidence indicated Saddam Hussein did have WMDs, did have programs for developing WMDs, and was seeking to get "yellow cake" uranium (despite Joseph Wilson's claims to the contrary). Some WMDs and evidence of WMDs were later found by the U.S. military in Iraq, but there is evidence that most of the WMDs were transported out of Iraq prior to the arrival of U.S. and allied troops. There was plenty of time to accomplish this as the Bush Administration clearly telegraphed its punches.
Whether the U.S. invasion of Iraq is seen as a rescue of the Iraqi people from the tyranny of Saddam Hussein or as an attempt to replace Saddam with a reliable ally in the broader war against the jihadists, or both, it was certainly not a case of "U.S. imperialism" or unprovoked aggression by the allies against a peaceful government -- as the anti-American Left would have people believe.
In his recent article published in the Wall Street Journal ("Libertarians and the War: Ron Paul Doesn't Speak for All of Us" July 17, 2007), Georgetown University professor and libertarian writer Randy Barnett does not appear to address the "declaration of war" issue which many anti-war libertarians invoke, but he does point out quite correctly that "[w]hile all libertarians accept the principle of self-defense, and most accept the role of the U.S. government in defending U.S. territory, libertarian first principles of individual rights and the rule of law tell us little about what constitutes appropriate and effective self-defense after an attack." And, of course, no one ever claimed that they do, at least no one I know of in the pro-Iraqi liberation faction among libertarians.
Strict libertarianism says it is wrong to initiate force against a peaceful person or regime that has not initiated force against others. It does not say that you cannot use force in retaliation against someone who has initiated force, which Saddam Hussein had done on a massive scale. Specific tactics and strategy of war cannot be deduced from such first principles as self-ownership, private property, rule of law, etc. There is nothing in libertarian principles or the theory of the laissez-faire constitutional republic which dictates such matters. Such specific issues of tactics and strategy are matters of judgment and prudence by military experts. Other than advocating an international gold standard, low or no tariffs, and trying to avoid (if possible) foreign wars as a general policy, there can be a wide latitude of positions among libertarians when it comes to foreign policy and geopolitical strategy.
By making himself a single-issue candidate -- especially on an issue on which libertarians are so divided – Ron Paul is sadly distracting from other very important issues and from the bedrock libertarian principles on which we all agree. As Professor Barnett writes in the closing paragraph of his WSJ editorial, those libertarians who supported the liberation of Iraq and who support success in leaving behind a stable ally there ". . . are still rooting for success in Iraq because it would make Americans more safe, while defeat would greatly undermine the fight against those who declared war on the U.S. They are concerned that Americans may get the misleading impression that all libertarians oppose the Iraq war -- as Ron Paul does -- and even that libertarianism itself dictates opposition to this war. It would be a shame if this misinterpretation inhibited a wider acceptance of the libertarian principles that would promote the general welfare of the American people."
I agree. Thank you, Professor Barnett.
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U.S. Kills Al Qaeda Mastermind of Golden Dome Mosque Bombing
TOP AL QAEDA LEADER IN IRAQ CAPTURED, SPILLS GUTS
Highest-ranking Iraqi in Leadership of Al Qaeda in Iraq in Custody -- Fox News
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Senate 'Slumber Party' Fails: Iraq Withdrawal Vote Falls Short -- AP
Senate Rejects Troop Withdrawal From Iraq -- AP
Dems Rev Up Base at MoveOn.org Candlelight Vigil Outside 'All-Night' Senate Debate on Iraq -- Fox News
The 60-Vote Rule: What's good for the Democrat goose is good for the Republican gander.
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"Now they're trying to make it look like the cloture rule is something that the Republicans invoked for the first time last night, ever! All those mean, rascally Republicans! How rotten of them to make us have to have 60 votes. How stupid do they think people are? People know the 60 votes for certain now after the immigration bill. I'm talking about people that don't pay attention to this kind of stuff. You and I do. People know this is... The Republicans said no, no, no, you gotta have 60 votes? That's right, you do! That's a senate rule, especially on matters of important national security. You gotta have 60 votes. It's just a Senate rule. It's nothing new, and here's Barbara Boxer, whining and moaning, the Republicans said no, no, no, you gotta have 60 votes." ~Rush Limbaugh, July 18, 2007
Zogby: Congress's Approval Rating Hits All Time Low -- Yahoo News
Rush Comments on the Zogby Survey
"There's a Zogby poll out, voters unhappy with Bush and Congress. Bush's popularity is what it is, but Congress' numbers keep plummeting. They are low and this last night didn't help, folks. , , , The Congress numbers just keep plummeting here, 83% said Congress was doing a fair or poor job. Only 14% rated Congress excellent or good. You can talk about Bush all you want, but I have to tell you, I think we need to start talking about Harry Reid as the most incompetent majority leader in modern history. He cannot deliver for his kooks. They talk about Bush being incompetent out there, folks, but Bush beats Reid and Pelosi and Murtha. He beats these people every damn time on this, even with four Republican defectors. Hagel was one of them and Olympia Snowe, but even with that, Bush beats these people on this every time they try it. Harry Reid's lost control of the Senate. He's in the majority. He cannot deliver for his kooks. In fact, he's losing votes every time they pull this.
"Every time they try one of these things, they get fewer votes. So maybe the thing we need to do is just continue to do all-nighters and expose these people as the incompetent libs that they are while their poll numbers are driven into the dirt. Harry Reid needs to change its focus. He needs to get back to doing what he does best and that's sleazy land deals with his kids. It's time for him to go home to Searchlight, Nevada, wherever he lives. He's in the big leagues now, but he can't seem to swing the bat. The bat just stays on his shoulder, and when he does swing, he misses. If I'm a Democrat or liberal, I would demand new leadership. They can sit there all day long and complain and whine about Bush, but I'll tell you, Harry Reid is proving to be an embarrassment. All-nighter, 24 hours, could not even tire the Senate into voting for cloture. You know what I think the biggest debate was last night? I don't know how much you watched of this, Mr. Snerdley. I was amazed at how fresh-faced they were after this all-nighter and how fresh they looked and so forth. I think the biggest real debate last night was, "How do we appear here? Do we look like Jimmy Stewart in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, all drawn and haggard and unshaven, tie undone, collar array, in a state of disarray; or do we bring in the best makeup artists we can, the Beltway look, shaved, made up, hair sprayed, shirt ironed," and you can see if you watched this what won the night.
"McCain was powerful. We've got some audio sound bites coming up from him. You can say what you want about his presidential candidacy imploding, but he gave a floor speech yesterday that just took it to Dingy Harry, and it was really good. Kay Bailey Hutchison was also very succinct. Brevity is the soul of wit, and I made a little note, Kay Bailey Hutchison said, (paraphrasing) "What are we doing here? None of these amendments can possibly be passed into law." So the Democrats are going to judge this one of two ways, because this was a fundraiser. If they really wanted to get this done, why don't they try their own nuclear option? Why don't they try to break this filibuster and say, "You know what, this is too important," whatever the nuclear option was on filibustering judicial nominees. They're not serious about this. This was a hoax. It was fundraising, and as I say, folks, it's crucial to remember that they keep losing votes each time they try this.
"Some more data from this latest Zogby poll, not just the information about how poorly Congress is doing, 14%, and last night didn't help. "Despite their dim views of government, majorities of Americans remain upbeat about their personal finances and security, and nearly two-thirds are very or fairly confident their children will have a better life than they do." There's a lot of optimism out there and yet we keep hearing about this angst and the guilt and the unsettledness that has supposedly swept over our population. In the national survey of just over a thousand likely voters, "66 percent said Bush had done only a fair or poor job as president, with 34 percent ranking his performance as excellent or good." He is doing twice as well as Congress is in his approval numbers, even at 34%. This is stunning. I want to tell you people, if you think that the approval rating for Congress is down because they're not passing massive legislation and getting things done for America, if you think that the disapproval of Congress is related to the fact that they can't pass a bill to get us out of Iraq, you are missing the boat.
"I think it's great news. I love these low approval numbers for Congress and government overall. I think the immigration bill, as I told you, the way it shook out was a great illustration for people who are on the fence about all this, actually see the arrogance and conceit of big government and the inefficiency of bloated bureaucracies and organizations. When I say the arrogance and conceit, I mean the literal unwillingness to listen to the desires of the American people expressed in a vast majority that crossed all kinds of lines of demarcation. . . ." ~Rush Limbaugh broadcast July 18.
Trump World Towers a Nest for Communists and Socialist Bureaucrats -- NewsMax
Norwegians Suffer Under High Taxes of their Welfare State -- Aftenposten
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How Californians Are Being Escheated
Accounts or safe-deposit boxes deemed inactive at risk of being looted.
By TOM MCCLINTOCK
Republican state senator from Thousand Oaks
Escheat is a feudal concept that arose from the despotism of the Dark Ages. It stemmed from the principle that property rights depend upon the sufferance of the sovereign, and when a person dies or disappears without heirs, his property reverts to the feudal lord.
California revived this medieval doctrine in 1959 and began seizing personal assets on the smarmy pretext that after a few years of account or safe-deposit box inactivity, property is obviously "lost," and the state needs to "protect" it by selling it off and depositing the proceeds into the general fund.
Today in California, no one's property is safe. When a family sets aside an investment for college or retirement, it may be in for a nasty surprise just three years later. After a lifetime running a small shop, Benny and Sally Fong could have retired on their shares of Warren Buffett's holding company, Berkshire Hathaway, that had grown in value to more than $1 million. But when they tried to redeem their nest egg, they discovered the state Controller's Office had sold the shares – for just $171,000.
When a widow returns to her bank safe deposit box after several years to retrieve her precious heirlooms, she is likely to discover that the controller has already looted it, shredded her family photos and auctioned off anything of monetary value. That's exactly what happened to Carla Ruff, whose great-grandmother's jewelry (appraised at more than $80,000) was taken straight out of her safe deposit box by the controller and sold on eBay for $1,700. Critical financial documents she desperately needed to prepare her dying husband's estate had been shredded.
Don't expect the "protector" of your "lost" property to be glad to see you when you try to redeem what's left. Anne Smith (not her real name) has been trying to reclaim checks the state intercepted from her mother's estate in 2001. After she spent years meticulously documenting her rightful ownership, two months ago the Controller's Office told her she wouldn't get her money back until the company turned over its complete database so the controller could search for additional property to take.
Particularly for claims over $5,000, the controller's office is notorious for stonewalling. When Ronald Repass tried to recover stocks taken from his father's estate – despite notifying the controller beforehand that the stocks weren't abandoned – he was warned that it would take 12 to 18 months to process his claim, and any inquiries would restart the clock. When he finally called after two years of waiting, he was told his claim had been "misplaced."
Controller John Chiang maintains that he's shocked, just-shocked, that his office has been behaving in such a manner, and he wants to do everything he can to set things right, except, apparently, if it reduces the state's revenue. In March, Chiang vigorously opposed legislation to lengthen the escheat period – how long the state must wait before grabbing assets – and to require at least three notices to owners before their property is taken. He is currently sponsoring legislation that would allow him to comb through confidential tax records in search of additional property to seize.
The federal courts have seen through the charade. U.S. District Judge William B. Shubb issued an injunction June 1 halting the practice until the state develops a process that lives up to the pretense that it's only trying to safeguard "lost" property.
The catch is that the better the state does at safeguarding property, the less money it gets to keep, and state officials have grown addicted to the more than half a billion dollars that escheatment brings them every year.
To persuade the judge to lift his injunction, Democratic leaders and the governor's office have drafted a "post-partisan" "reform" that purports to better protect people's property while, in fact, protecting nothing but the state's own revenue. The proof of their intention lies in this simple fact: They plan on receiving the same amount of revenue after enacting the "reform."
It is a classic example of a government that has become destructive of the very rights it was formed to protect.
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Why the Free Market Works and Other Half-Baked Theories Don't
by John r. Lott
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Clichés of Liberalism
Governing Through Insult, Confusion and Sound Bites
by David C. Wilcox
Hoover Institution, Milton Friedman, June 1999:
"Cliches of Liberalism is a very well-written, very effective, and persuasive book."
The American Spectator, R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr., June 1999:
"This is a splendid book that abounds with good sense."
Young America's Foundation, James B. Taylor, June 1999:
"Cliches of Liberalism is the best book I've seen to explain how big-government liberals succeed in achieving their destructive agenda. Understanding this is the essential first step in fighting back to restore the liberties left to us by our Founding Fathers. The book is also a superior American government text useful for the high school or college class or for parents homeschooling their children."
JULY 13, 2007
Friday the 13th was lucky for tens of millions of Rush listeners when economist Walter E. Williams guest hosted.
Nugent: 'Live and let live' anathema to the political Left
By Ted Nugent, Texas Wildman
Aired originally Sunday, June 17, 2007
I like sizzling meat on the grill. Wild, huh? Anybody? Now, we all know ol' Nuge isn't by any stretch of the imagination a weirdo when it comes to an omnivorous diet.
Especially here in the great Republic of Texas, a smiling, drooling preference for succulent, protein-rich, nutritious backstrap over aromatic mesquite coals is as American and natural and right as Mom, apple pie and the flag. It's beautiful, really.
But a culture war rages against such universal, self-evident truths. It would be laughable if it were not so deranged. Some weirdos actually are on a crusade to outlaw the consumption of flesh.
I have musical touring associates who have been fired from their jobs with ex-Beatle Paul McCartney for sneaking a hamburger. You heard that right. Fired for eating meat by an animal-rights maniac, hard-core vegan bass player.
The entire agenda of the gazillion-dollar-financed joke known as PETA literally is dedicated to outlawing meat.
Neither I, nor any hunter or meat eater on the planet, has any desire whatsoever to influence any vegetarian's choice of diet or to force them to eat meat. We are the friendly, tolerant Americans.
This is but one of many issues that represent the line drawn in the sand between liberals and conservatives.
Our own intrepid opinion editor at the Trib, my friend John Young, doesn't want to simply make the choice to be unarmed and helpless for himself. He has again recently insisted that you and I must also comply with his soulless condition of unarmed helplessness in "gun-free zones."
Nobody from our side wants to force anybody to have a gun or defend themselves. It is us, the conservatives, who are for individual choice.
As for the American left: One hears the words of Mao Tse-Tung come broiling out of the mouths of its heroes, when Ted Kennedy and Hillary Clinton et al unflinchingly push for "redistribution of wealth."
Central Texas' own Chet Edwards has the audacity to support taxing the after-tax life savings of American families following the death of a loved one.
The unfair, un-American, unconstitutional death tax literally destroys mom-and-pop businesses across the land. Think about it.
The wall that once symbolized communism is down, yet some still want to give it a shot. Dear God in heaven, help us.
Recently, Danny Glover, an otherwise fine actor, embarrassingly abused his uniquely American freedoms by siding with the communist Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez to finance what clearly appears to be an anti-American propaganda film. Nice.
Meanwhile, right there in that communist country, old Hugo is shutting down an entire media network for daring to challenge his heavy handed, corrupt, dictatorial policies. This is a leader who has proudly sided with terrorist support groups, and Danny Glover gives him a big hug.
If a Venezuelan citizen were to do so with President Bush, I am confident that Chavez would not respect that individual's right to free expression.
Venezuela gives its citizens no right to free expression. Glover must be blinded by the trees in that forest.
Examine the agendas of the liberal "party of peace." Its members clearly don't believe you and I are smart enough or capable of making our own choices in life.
While conservatives "live and let live," the left arrogantly thinks it knows better than we do and will burden "we the people" with more government control until we are taxed to death.
Watch them. Listen, pay attention and blow whistles.
Educate your family, neighbors, friends, co-workers and hunting buddies on how dangerous such control is against the American Dream of individual pursuit of happiness. Throw off the shackles of government-run slavery. Stand up for individual independence. Enough is enough.
Hey, Hugo and Hillary, leave me alone!
Ted Nugent is a Waco-based musician and television show host.
U.S. ASTRONAUTS CONTINUE TO REPAIR &
AILING, OUTDATED INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION
NASA Clears Shuttle Atlantis for Return to Earth -- Space.com
Atlantis Shuttle Crew Undocks from Space Station -- NASA
The STS-117 Atlantis crew members continued the on-going long-term project of repair and construction of the international space station with the installation of the starboard 3 and 4 (S3/S4) truss segment. The crew installed the truss June 11 and conducted four spacewalks to activate the S3/S4 and retraction of the solar panels on the Port 6 truss. During the third spacewalk, the crew also repaired an out–of-position thermal blanket on the left orbital maneuvering system pod of the space shuttle itself.
BUSH AND DEMS UNSUCCESSFULLY TRY TO REVIVE AMNESTY BILL
"Amnesty 2" Bill "a security nightmare" -- World Net Daily
Harry Reid: Working Overtime For Failure in Iraq -- Lorie Byrd
Competition or Monopoly -- Walter E. Williams
Nifong Finally Resigns in Disgrace as DA -- WRAL
Do Away With Public Schools -- Jonah Goldberg
Good for Jonah!
SEOUL, South Korea -- Shortly before we arrived here, the Republic of Korea launched its first Aegis-class destroyer, the King Sejong. A few hours after we landed in this booming metropolis, the North Korean People's Army "test-fired" several Silkworm anti-shipping missiles into the East Sea between North Korea and Japan. Neither event is related to our FOX News "War Stories" team being here to shoot a Korean War documentary, but surely both "launches" are connected.
"In this part of the world, little happens by coincidence. We should have no doubt that the ROK Aegis launch and the North Korean missile 'tests' are directly related," a senior American military officer assigned to U.S. Forces Korea told me. His view is substantiated by press reports here attributed to South Korean and Japanese intelligence sources. According to the media, Pyongyang's missile "tests" were designed to "send a message to the government in Seoul that their expensive new destroyer is vulnerable to attack."
But that's not how official Washington is putting it.
The King Sejong, a 7,600-ton KDX-III destroyer, is South Korea's first vessel to be equipped with the vaunted Aegis Combat System -- capable of bringing down ballistic missiles. Until now, the United States has licensed this technology to only a handful of nations -- the United Kingdom, Japan, Spain and Norway. According to unclassified Pentagon data, Aegis-equipped warships are able to track about 1,000 targets and attack 20 of them simultaneously. The Bush administration regards the U.S. and allied Aegis systems to be essential parts of a worldwide anti-missile defense network. The Japanese and South Koreans are both building additional Aegis-equipped vessels at a cost of more than $1 billion per copy.
Given the technological and financial commitments being made by Tokyo and Seoul, the tepid U.S. response to the North Korean threat is inexplicable.
"The short-range missile launches are believed to be part of a routine exercise that North Korea has conducted annually on the east and the west coasts in the past," said a Pentagon statement. And the State Department was even more conciliatory to Pyongyang. "It's something that they have done on several occasions," said U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill, during an Association of South East Asian Nations meeting in Manila, Philippines.
Hill, it must be noted, is the chief U.S. negotiator in the so-called six-party talks with the North Koreans about their nuclear weapons program. In February, four months after the communist regime tested a nuclear weapon, Hill proudly announced that the United States, North Korea, South Korea, Japan, Russia and China had all agreed that the despotic regime in Pyongyang would stop building nuclear bombs and that we would all just get along.
Unfortunately, the scheme came off the tracks almost immediately -- and little has been done to implement the deal. Experts we interviewed for a "War Stories" documentary on nuclear weapons estimate that North Korea already has reprocessed enough plutonium to build 10 to 12 bombs. Neither this lethal material -- nor any of North Korea's nuclear sites -- has been open to international inspection.
The State Department's infatuation with talk for the sake of talking is evident in Hill's assessment of the consequence of the North Korean missile test: "I know that it will not affect the six-party talks." Meanwhile, here in South Korea, more than 34,000 U.S. military personnel are serving as guardians on freedom's forgotten front. Many are veterans of service in Iraq and Afghanistan, and most are serving a 12-month tour far from home, family and friends.
While the diplomats ponder what a North Korean missile test may or may not mean, these young Americans and their Republic of Korea counterparts have to face reality across the demilitarized zone that separates North and South Korea. Within 60 miles of the DMZ, Pyongyang has stationed more than 1.2 million active-duty military personnel, 1,600 aircraft and 700 ships, including the world's largest submarine force.
According to the Strategic Digest posted by U.S. Forces Korea, "more than 250 long-range artillery systems are within range of Seoul from their current locations." Add to that at least 600 SCUD ballistic missiles capable of delivering chemical or biological warheads anywhere on the peninsula and it's easy to see why the South Koreans decided to build Aegis-equipped warships.
Is it too much to hope that our State Department would take the threat just as seriously?
Oliver North is the founder and honorary chairman of Freedom Alliance and author of The Assassins .
JUNE 8, 2007
SPACE SHUTTLE ATLANTIS BLASTS OFF FROM CAPE CANAVERAL
Successful Friday Night Liftoff Begins 11-Day Space Mission -- AP
GRASSROOTS CONSERVATIVES VICTORIOUS AGAINST AMNESTY BILL
Beating Back Amnesty Bill -- Great for Conservative Movement -- Rush
Deep divisions derail immigration bill -- Associated Press version
Iran Caught Red-Handed Shipping Arms to Taliban -- ABC
Too Bad -- Peggy Noonan
The betrayal of the conservative Republican coalition by President Bush.
Why Is Profit a Dirty Word? -- John Stossel
Bush Asked to Prod Hanoi on Human Rights -- VietnamHumanRights.net
JUNE 5, 2007
Bush Defends Missile Defense Shield -- AP
4th Suspect in JFK Airport Terrorist Plot Surrenders -- KFI
Rogue Trial, Rogue Sentencing -- Rush
Black Democrat Possibly The Most Corrupt Congressman Ever
MAY 27, 2007
U.S. Troops Rescue 42 Iraqis from Al Qaeda Prison
Cindy Sheehan Quits as 'Face' of the Anti-War Movement
She says, ""Goodbye Attention Whore" in letter to DailyKos blog.
U.S., Iran hold diplomatic talks about Iraq
Talking to Iran to help us bring peace in Iraq is kind of like talking to Hitler, Stalin, and Mao to get help to prevent mass murders and stamp out totalitarian socialism. Of course, Pelosi is pleased.
Venezuela Youth Protest Hugo Chavez's Silencing of TV Channel
Just another in a series of attacks on freedom of speech by a power-mad socialist ruler.
MAY 24, 2007
PRO-FREEDOM BOOK EXTOLLED TO TENS OF
THE INTELLECTUAL AMMUNITION DEPARTMENT
In January Rush Limbaugh, the bionic radio talk show maven beloved by millions of Americans (and hated by ultrastatist leftists everywhere) endorsed (and even read from on the air) Ayn Rand's classic philosophic novel Atlas Shrugged, considered by many to be the most powerful literary "slap in the face" to the left-wing "liberal" establishment ever written. Today Rush strongly and enthusiastically recommended Basic Economics: A Citizen's Guide to the Economy by economist, columnist, and true multidisciplinary scholar Thomas Sowell. Sowell's book is certainly one of the most readable on the subject of the economy and lucidly dissects many misconceptions and refutes false claims leveled by socialists and "liberals" against market freedom. Double click here for Rush Limbaugh's endorsement and rave review of Dr. Sowell's book.
Rush Limbaugh's nationally syndicated radio program is heard by tens of millions of people five days a week on over 600 stations from noon to 3 PM Eastern Time (9 AM to 12 Noon Pacific Time). I know of no other venue in which so many millions of people are exposed to pro-free market, anti-statist ideas and are made aware of such books as Atlas Shrugged and Basic Economics.
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Triumph Forsaken by Mark Moyar
* * *
MAY 13, 2007
Top Taliban Commander Killed in Fighting -- Associated Press
Another evil doer bites the dust!
Engineer guilty of giving data to China -- Wash. Times
C'est Si Bon -- Ann Coulter
Ann Coulter is celebrating the pro-American Sarkozy victory in France.
Sarkozy Is No Free Market Capitalist -- Sylvain Charat
Let's not get too excited about Sarkozy, warns this French conservative libertarian.
Nicolas Sarkozy Wins French Presidency;
Defeats Attractive Socialist Party Woman
Dems Back Down After Presidential Veto
Democrats Back Down On Iraq Timetable -- Wash Post
Pelosi and Reid are way out of their depth when it comes to foreign policy and national defense.
ANOTHER LEADING TERRORIST GETS FLUSHED AWAY
Leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq reportedly killed -- Reuters
More Red Herrings Fall Into Democrats' Laps -- David Limbaugh
Democrats Put Their Best Lies Forward -- David Limbaugh
Astronauts, Space Tourist in Good Shape After Landing in Kazakhstan -- NASA
VIRGINIA TECH MASSACRE: Death toll limited before campus gun ban
5 years ago, shooter subdued by armed students
The Terrible Truth About Liberals -- Neal Boortz
Why Bastiat is My Hero -- Bob McTeer, former head of the Dallas Federal Reserve (yes, believe it or not)
Textbook of Americanism
Very short but clearly written discussion of the fundamental principle behind Americanism in an easy-to-follow question-and-answer format.
Dr. Walter Williams on Violence & the Moral Limits of Political Action
Separation of Force and Whim -- The Laissez-Faire Republic vs. Whimarchy: The Principle of Clearly Defined Individual Human Rights in a Limited Constitutional Republic versus the Tyranny of Unlimited Government by Whim
Constitutional Republic vs Democracy: The Role of a Majority Vote in a Free Society Versus Unlimited Majority Rule in a Democracy. Did the founders of the United States of America intend to establish a democracy? Is a republic merely a representative democracy?
APRIL 21, 2007
Sunni sheiks in Anbar to form new national party to oppose al-Qaida
Latest US solution to Iraq's internal strife: a three-mile wall -- Guardian
Bush sees tide turning in Iraq -- Washington Times
A Trail of Slime -- Thomas Sowell
Civilian Deaths Drop in Baghdad -- AP
US-Led Airstrike Kills 35 Taliban -- Las Vegas Sun
Tom DeLay's Action Points -- Tom DeLay
An effective conservative leader, who was targeted by the Left and run out of Congress, speaks out for more unified action from those on the pro-freedom pro-American Right.
Bomb Blast in Iraq's Parliament Cafe Kills 8
The reactionary jihadist mentalities continue their murders and agenda of disruption.
All Remaining Charges Against the Duke Lacrosse Players Finally Dropped
These false charges were pushed in the first place by Nifong to get Black votes for his re-election.
Nifong Apologizes to Falsely Accused Duke Students
When will Al Sharpton apologize to the exonerated Duke students?
The Imus Lynch Party -- Pat Buchanan
"The hypocrisy here was too thick to cut with a chainsaw."
We Stand for Freedom of Speech -- and That's What Threatens the Left
"I don't try to censor them. They try to destroy me."~Rush Limbaugh
The Justice Bros. Spots: from Paul Shanklin c/o Rush Limbaugh
APRIL 7, 2007
Democrat Leader Nancy Pelosi, America's Neville Chamberlaion, Visits Syria's Anti-American Regime
Nancy Pelosi Demonstrates Why Democrats Cannot Be Trusted with U.S. National Security or Foreign Policy -- Ron Kessler
Smuggled aliens to sue Texas deputy -- Washington Times
Two illegal aliens plan a multimillion-dollar civil rights lawsuit against a Texas deputy who was sentenced to prison over an April 2005 incident in which the lawman shot at an alien-smuggling vehicle that he said had just tried to run him down.
Marxist labor boss honored by Gov. Schwarzenegger
English version of website reminding us of the brutal atrocities of communism, with a special focus on Vietnam, lest we forget.
Vietnam Human Rights Network
Vietnam Era Music -- one of my most favorite sites.
Weezye's World of Music -- a real delight
More Rebuttals of Man-Made Global Warming -- LarryElder.com
Czech President Klaus Condemns "Environmentalism" as Religious Cult with an Anti-Capitalist Political Agenda -- UPI
Whose Fall Guy? -- David Limbaugh
Justice Dept Audit Finds FBI Abused, Violated Patriot Act Powers -- AP
Former Iranian Defense Official Talks to Western Intelligence
Fox News Channel Picks Up 13 Episodes of the 1/2 Hour News Hour
New comedy show on cable TV -- with Rush Limbaugh as President of the United States and Ann Coulter as VP! Conservatives and libertarians get to lampoon establishment leftists on television?
1/2 Hour News Hour - pilot episode clip
A very optimistic conservative vision of the future.
JURY FINDS SCOOTER "GUILTY"
BUT OF WHAT EXACTLY?
Trial in Error -- Wash. Post
I Call for Justice -- Clarice Feldman
Does the Libby Verdict Have Appeal? -- NRO
Merck stops lobbying for compulsory vaccine! -- FEE
Only after a grassroots campaign in opposition.
Constitutional Libertarian Economist
Addresses Millions of Listeners
Refutes Several Widespread Statist Myths and Fallacies
:1st Hour - 2nd Hour - 3rd Hour
"Draft Williams for President" Effort Led by Duck Mallord Filmore
But Dr. Williams declined saying he would not want to "rise above principle" . . . .
Mallard Fillmore -- Bruce Tinsley
* * *
About Mallard Fillmore and the Other Characters
Did Muqtada al-Sadr Flee from Iraq to Iran -- or Is He "Just Visiting"?-- FOX
Al-Qaida in Iraq Leader Wounded, in Custody -- AP
Iraq to Close Borders with Iran and Syria -- AP
To keep troublemakers out.
U.S. "Trade Deficits" Aren't a Problem -- Roger Nils Folsom and Rodolfo Alejo Gonzalez
THE STING OF CORPORATE SOCIALISM
A scheme by a major pharmaceutical manufacturer to use government intervention to force taxpayers to pay for its new drug has resulted in Texas' new plan to compel schoolgirls to get anti-HPV shots, but resistance is mounting:
Forced Vaccination Without Representation -- Barbara Simpson
Barbara Simpson slams GOP's Perry for selling innocent girls to highest bidder
Texas Lawmaker Urges Gov. Perry: Rescind Vaccine Order -- Liz Austin Peterson, an Associated Press writer
Iranian nuclear scientist ‘assassinated by Mossad’ -- Times Online
* * *
Free the Fitzgerald One! -- Ann Coulter
Conservatives need to support their own when under attack.
Ignacio Ramos Beaten in Prison -- AP
Healing America: The Free Market Instead of Government Healthcare - Jane M. Orient, M.D.
How to Cut the Murder Rate in New Orleans -- Walter Block
Move On, Move Over! -- TheVanguard.Org
Iraq: 300 Insurgents Killed in Battle -- Associated Press
Air Strike Destroys Taliban Command Post, Kills Top-Level Terrorist -- AP
Defense Sec. Gates: Iraq Resolution 'Emboldens Enemy' -- AP
Pelosi and the Democrats Continue to Plot to Sabotage the War against Terror in Iraq As predicted, now that San Fran Nan Pelosi and the Democrats are in control of the national government, efforts to Because of political reasons of their lust for power and their hatred of the current nonDemocrat Chief Executive, the leading Democrats are invested in U.S. defeat and are not really supportive of the troops in the field of war. Even though the Murtha resolution is non-binding, it sends a message of hope to Al Qaeda and America's enemies while attacking U.S. troop morale.
Pelosi Now in Conrol of U.S. Government
New Policy in Iraq: Kill or Capture Iranian Agents in Iraq
Well, it's about time!
Why America Does Not Need More Socialized Medicine -- Jane Orient
As President Bush and the Democrats who now control Congress both want to impose yet another outrageously expensive layer of socialized medicine on the American economy, it is time to remind ourselves why this will only make American health care more bureaucratic and expensive and require crushing hikes in taxation. This applies to Gov. Schwarzenegger's "universal health care" proposal as well.
House resolution opposes North American Union -- WND
Lawmakers seek to block NAFTA superhighway system, continental integration.
Feds pressed to hand over border agent records
Congressman files FOIA request on info that could favor Compean, Ramos..
Congressman: Feds stonewalling on border agents
Accuses Bush and DHS of withholding evidence supporting convicted border agents Compean and Ramos. Why the secrecy?
Report Released on Sandy Berger's Theft and Destruction of Classified Docs in Clinton Coverup Caper
Berger was never given a polygraph even though he had agreed to one.
Murtha and Emanuel Call for Denial of Funding for Additional Troops
Leftwing Congressional Democrats condemn US reinforcements for Iraq -- veterans respond
Why are some congressional Democrats plotting to stab US troops in the back?
Is it because their 'loyalty' is to a party and not their country?
Economists upgrade US outlook after surprisingly strong data
But how long will it take for the Dems to sabotage our economy?
Victory means Victory -- Kenneth Timmerman
If not Iraq, then where, when and at what cost? -- Alexander
California Libertarians Respond to Schwarzenegger's Tax-and-Spend Extremism
So long, Saddam -- and good riddance!
STRIPPER LIED ... WHITE BOYS FRIED -- Ann Coulter
Duke Accuser Crystal Mangum Changes Her Mind Again
Will her obvious lies never end?
Durham D.A. Asks to be Taken Off Duke Case -- Yahoo News
Nifong faces possible disbarment from ethics violations.
It's Black and White -- Burt Prelutsky
Rush Limbaugh Endorses Atlas Shrugged
by Ayn Rand
Reads Excerpts on the Air
On his birthday today, bionic broadcaster Rush Limbaugh read passages from philosophical novel Atlas Shrugged, the book which ultimately helped to launch the individualist conservative movement and libertarian activism, beginning with the Goldwater campaign of 1964 and the formation of several libertarian organizations in the 1970s and extending to the present time. Originally published in 1957, the controversial novel -- sometimes called the most fundamentally "politically incorrect" book of the century -- Atlas Shrugged constituted a powerful ideological challenge to modern establishment "liberalism" and a delightful "punch in the face" of its decadent philosophical bases of irrationalism, sacrificial ethics, and collectivism, and instead boldly declared and upheld an uncompromising vision of rational self-interest, American individualism, freedom for peaceful people to live, work, innovate, and earn a profit, and unabridged market capitalism. The book and its author have been smeared by left-wing academics and journalists of various political stripes, but it continues to awaken and inspire new generations of readers to this day. Taking a brief timeout from answering telephone calls and his cogent political analysis of the current news, Rush acknowledged Atlas as a source of inspiration for him and heartily recommended people read it.
Saddam Hussein Hanged by Iraqis -- AP
Download Cellphone Video of Saddam's Execution -- Google
Hugo Chavez Refuses License to Venezuelan Opposition TV -- Reuters
Under socialist dictators, opposition parties tend to get shut out.
Hillary Falls to Earth in Presidential Poll Race -- London Times
DECEMBER 23, 2006
U.S. forces kill top Taliban leader -- Reuters
Former GOP Congressman Switches to Libertarian Party
"A former Georgia congressman who helped spark President Clinton's impeachment has quit the Republican Party to become a Libertarian, saying he is disillusioned with the GOP on issues such as spending and privacy. Bob Barr, who served eight years as a Republican congressman before losing his seat in 2002, announced Friday that he is now a 'proud, card-carrying Libertarian.' And he encouraged others to join him.
"'It's something that's been bothering me for quite some time, the direction in which the party has been going more and more toward big government and disregard toward privacy and civil liberties,' said Barr, 58, a lawyer and consultant living in Atlanta. 'In terms of where the country needs to be going to get back to our constitutional roots, I've come to the conclusion that the only way to do that is to work with a party that practices what it preaches, and that is the Libertarian Party.'
"Barr said he has no plans to run for office. In his new role as the Libertarian Party's regional representative for the South, he will help promote the party's message and recruit candidates, he said."- Associated Press, 12/15/06
DECEMBER 16, 2006
Anti-Caucasian Bigotry Gets a Pass
-- but maybe not for much longer this time
Head of DNA Lab Testifies He and Nifong Agreed to Suppress DNA Test Results -- The News & Observer
The rape accusation against the Caucasian members of the Duke lacrosse team continues to unravel as a made-up story full of holes in the tradition of the bigoted lies of Tawana Brawley. Put a racist slut together with a corrupt District Attorney angling for the Black vote and you have the recipe for gross defamation. It turns out that the DNA exam of the accuser's body and underwear found no fewer than five different sets of male DNA inside her -- but none of them matches any of the Duke lacrosse players! And the latest report, from the DA's office itself, is that the accuser is to give birth to a child conceived a couple of weeks after the alleged rape.
DNA Tests Clear Duke Players In Rape Case -- Newsday
Judge Orders Paternity Test on Rape Accuser's Baby -- Seattle Times
Shuttle Missions to Repair ISS, A Very Difficult Set of Feats -- NASA
* * *
What A Libertarian Is -- And Is Not
* * *
Libertarians are neither populists nor neoconservatives.
Space Shuttle Discovery Makes Successful Night Launch
Heads for the International Space Station.
Move America Forward Releases Critique of Iraq Study Group, Issues Alternative Proposals
DECEMBER 8, 2006
"The 'bipartisan' Iraq panel has recommended that Iran and Syria can help stabilize Iraq. You know, the way Germany and Russia helped stabilize Poland in '39."
"Now that Democrats have won the House, they can concentrate on losing the war."
"Liberals have no problem with government oppression as long as it's mandatory and applied equally to all Americans."- Columnist Ann Coulter
Senator Santorum's Farewell Address (full text)
Despite an excellent farewell address, it should be acknowledged that Sen. Santorum was not "perfect" and disappointed the conservative base by, for example, supporting the re-election of establishment liberal Arlen Specter against conservative challenger Pat Toomey. But despite such lapses, Santorum was probably the best person in the U.S. Senate. The voters of Pennsylvania should hang their heads in shame.
Is moderate inflation good for an economy?-- Dr Frank Shostak
* * *
APPEASEMENT IS NOT THE ANSWER
"Victory in World War II required flattening cities, firebombing factories, shops and homes, devastating vast tracts of Germany and Japan. The enemy and its supporters were exhausted materially and crushed in spirit. What our actions demonstrated to them was that any attempt to implement their vicious ideologies would bring them only destruction and death.
"Since their defeat, Nazism and Japanese imperialism have essentially withered as ideological forces. Victory today requires the same: smashing Iran's totalitarian regime and thus demoralizing the Islamist movement and its many supporters, so that they, too, abandon their cause as futile."- Elan Journo of the Ayn Rand Institute
NO SUBSTITUTE FOR CLEAR AND DECISIVE VICTORY
"The American people understand that this is a dangerous world. They know we must be prepared to defend ourselves at all times. They will support a war to protect our national security and defend our way of life. They will not - and should not - support an indecisive or failing entanglement in which our bravest and most patriotic young men and women are placed in jeopardy, injured, or killed with no clear goal or positive outcome realistically in sight. Following Vietnam, the American people believe in the Powell Doctrine: If you have to go to war, go with overwhelming, decisive, crushing force, win and win quickly and get out."- Rep. John Shadegg
* * *
Iran's Web Crackdown Shows Ease Of Government Internet Censorship -- Wall Street Journal
Dennis Miller Exposes Fad Aspect of Climate Change Alarmists
Proving once again that you can never trust the establishment news media, but must investigate further on every complex story to get to the truth. Never take a "news story" as gospel or at face value. Always see it in the context of the political/ideological line being pushed by the liberal-left establishment at any given moment.
Study says malaria helps spread HIV -- Yahoo News
Thanks to the left-wing establishment's ban of DDT.
Water on Mars?
Yes says a new analysis of photos of crater changes. Richard Hoagland is elated.
Alaskans Elect Sarah Palin Their Youngest Governor
News about elections of libertarians and libertarian-oriented Republicans around the country.
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THE NEW DEMOCRAT
More Statism Than Ever Before!
by Sam Wells
If any of those people who voted the Democrats back into power believe that the new Democrat majority will be less statist or less corrupt than the Republicans were, they will be rather disappointed, to say the least. There will almost certainly be more overall government spending, more regulations over business and other areas of our private lives, more subsidies to the big union bosses, more foreign aid, higher taxes (and at least a major attempt to roll back the Bush tax cuts), even less concern about border security, less freedom of enterprise, and more corruption.
The "Gridlock" Myth -- Whistling Past the Graveyard
Some people are saying that the election of a Democrat majority in Congress is not so bad because it will create "gridlock" in government and keep the feeds from passing new laws and the result will be more stability. I hope they are right, but I remain very unconvinced by this (often stubbornly made) claim. It sounds like whistling past the graveyard to me -- wishful thinking on the part of some conservatives and libertarians who want to put an optimistic face on the bad news of the election results. It seems to me that if Congress passes a dramatic hike in the compulsory minimum wage, for example, that President Bush is not likely to veto it. Not being a conservative Republican (although closer to being one than his father), Bush has almost never used the veto power. If they pass legislation to reverse the bill to build a 700-mile security fence on our southern border, he will almost certainly sign that, too. He has never been serious about border control. Unemployment for Americans will rise while social welfare spending -- which is by far the largest part of the federal budget -- will increase even beyond what the profligate Repubs had the gall to pass.
President Bush has not shown any genuine concern for keeping government spending under control or else he would have used the veto more. I have doubts that President Bush will veto, for example, an expensive new drug subsidy bill, which the Democrats are even now working on. And there will almost surely be more taxpayer money funneled to the Democrat Party's pet teachers unions, probably via passage of a new education "reform" bill on top of the already existing "No Child Left Behind" bureaucratic scam, written by Ted Kennedy and actively pushed by President Bush.
Gridlock? Considering how "moderate" Republicans have a tendency to buckle under to the most far-left Democrat demands, I doubt there will be nearly enough to stop the passage of more statist measures, federal spending, regulations, and tax cut rollbacks.
More "Pork" Spending Deals
What about spending on "pork" schemes and projects? Far too many liberal and "moderate" Republicans caved in to pressures to play the pork barrel game in Congress. But the Democrats will be far worse. How do we know this? Independent, nonpartisan groups, such as the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste, which closely monitor the pork barrel spending habits of Congress, keep a running index on each representative. While the vast majority of Americans do not keep tabs on the spending habits of their so-called congressional representatives, and most people are blithely ignorant of how their congresscritters vote, these watchdog groups provide a valuable service by keeping a vigilant eye on the voting/spending patterns of politicians. The CCAGW computes the pork index for each representative and senator in Congress -- with 0 being the highest level of pork spending and 100 being the least.. How do Democrats compare to Republicans? Here are the averages for the two most recent years:
House of Representatives:
Democrats 11% 13%
Republicans 63% 73%
Democrats 16% 18%
Republicans 63% 68%
Clearly the average Republican, whatever other imperfections he or she may have, is much less inclined to vote for pork barrel deals than the average Democrat in office. The facts show that Democrats, on average, vote for pork spending 5 to 6 times as much as Republicans! That's a whole lot more than a "dime's worth of difference"!
What about the "blue dog Democrats" -- those more moderate politicians who ran as Democrats and won? How do they stack up? After all, it was the more moderate Democrats who put the Democrats in the majority this time around -- even though it will be the more extreme reactionary left-wing Democrats (like Pelosi and Reid) who will be in the leadership positions and calling the legislative agenda. How much influence the more moderate Democrats will have is unknown at this point, but it is sobering to note how current Blue Dogs vote when it comes to pork barrel wheeling and dealing. According to their available voting records, the blue dog Democrats on average are 3 to 4 times as piggish as their Republican colleagues:
Blue Dog Democrats 24%
Republican Study Committee 79%
This is not to suggest that even the Republicans could not be more frugal, of course, but only to indicate how much worse the spendaholic Democrats are.
Perhaps the most that the Blue Dogs will accomplish in terms of "gridlock" is to keep the more extreme Dems (in the leadership positions) from pulling all U.S. troops out of Iraq immediately, paving the way for real civil war and subsequent bloodbath. Even the Democrat leadership knows that an immediate pullout of U.S. military assistance from Iraq would mean disaster. They are not stupid enough to want the disastrous consequences to be blamed on themselves, but they will try to goad Bush to do it and exploit it to their political advantage.
Corruption and Ethics Violations?
As far as corruption, there will be much more under the Democrat majority, even though it almost certainly won't be spotlighted nearly as much by the establishment media. You can bet that, for the most part, NPR (National Propaganda Radio) and almost all the television news networks will do their best to help the corrupt Dems cover up their scandals which, if revealed, will make even Mark Foley look like a Boy Scout by comparison!. Keep in mind the game that has been played: the Republicans in Congress have a rule that says if ethics charges are levied against one of them, they have to step down. The Dems have no such rule -- but they can find politically partisan district attorneys to go through enough grand juries to get an indictment on targeted Republicans, as they did with Tom DeLay. All they need is an indictment, not a conviction, and they have taken out a valuable player who opposes their ultra-statist agenda.
You can count on San Fran Nan Pelosi and her junta to take advantage of the Dems' newly acquired majority position now to use their power to launch never-ending fishing-expedition "investigations" against Republicans while giving their own party people a pass. The Democrat leadership will do almost anything to get more power and to keep power. They intend to make it as difficult as possible for the Republicans to ever get back into the majority.
Lord Acton wrote that "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." Given enough power over their fellow humans, anyone can be corrupted and abuse their power, be they Democrat, Republican, or even Libertarian. But some personalities are more susceptible to corruption than others, and I submit that Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer and Charlie Rangel are in the latter stages of Acton's Syndrome, having become thoroughly infected by their lust for power. We got a taste of what this type is like under the Clinton administration, the most scandalous group in U.S. history. From hiking taxes on Middle Americans and demoralizing the military to selling out U.S. national security to the Red Chinese Army in exchange for illegal foreign bribes, the Clintonistas will go down in history as infamous indeed. I shudder to contemplate all of what Congress might try to do under even a marginal Democrat majority, but I don't anticipate much if any good from it.
* * *
Great Moments in History? -- AmericanBacklash.com
Very often, peace agreements have been followed by the worst of bloodbaths instead of peace.
97 Reasons Democrats Are Weak On Defense And Can't Be Trusted To Govern In Wartime -- Investor's Business Daily
Saddam's Secrets: How an Iraqi General Defied & Survived Saddam Hussein by General Georges Sada
Hurricane "Superstorm" Predictions Way Off Base
2006 was quietest hurricane season in decade.
Our First Thanksgiving by Sartell Prentice, Jr.
How early Americans turned to private property for their salvation.
Kissinger Sabotages U.S. in Iraq
Kissinger is still the same evil defeatist s.o.b. he always has been.
NOVEMBER 18, 2006
Models present a creation by Australian
swimwear designer Leesa Fogarty,
during the Sarajevo Fashion Week in Bosnia
* * *
President Bush Visits Hanoi -- Nguyen Kinh Doanh
Philanthropy Expert: Conservatives Are More Generous, Admits Democrat
Rightwingers outgive leftists in helping those in need, documented in new book.
Leading Russian critic of Putin's regime is poisoned in London -- Telegraph.co.uk
FBI verifies Kerry at 'assassination summit' -- WND
Lest we forget . . .
Oil price tumbles to lowest level since June 2005 -- Reuters
Cosmic Rays, Not Human Industry, Drive Climate -- PhysicsPlus
Free market economist Milton Friedman dead at 94
His was a powerful voice for freedom and free enterprise.
It is a regrettable fact that our legal-political system is so often characterized by deception and ambush.
During the heated political campaigns prior to November 7, members of Congress would not dare pass a bill that would interfere with consumers’ free access to dietary supplements.
Now that the election is over, there is an attempt to attach a new law onto an existing bill that would give the FDA greater powers to remove dietary supplements from the marketplace and put a heavy burden on smaller dietary supplement companies.
This ominous Senate Bill—S.3546—is deceptively titled Dietary Supplement and Non-Prescription Drug Consumer Protection Act. The charade behind this title is that it would largely function to protect large pharmaceutical companies against the low cost competition they are encountering from makers of natural alternatives to their toxic drugs.
As many of you know, this year’s election was one of the closest on record. If the re-elected members of Congress know how outraged citizens will be if S.3546 is passed, it will almost certainly be killed.
To conveniently inform your members of Congress to vote NO on S.3546 and any House companion bill, just click on the “take action now” button below.
Please know that members of Congress now prefer email as the most efficient way to hear from their constituents. Life Extension has set up a super-convenient email network that enables consumers to readily identify their members of Congress and then send them prepared messages urging them to vote NO on S.3546.
If you want to read more about this bill, log onto www.lef.org then scroll down to the middle of the page and click on “AER Dietary Supplement Legislation” in red.
For nutritional questions on any Life Extension product, please contact advisory@LifeExtension.com. For questions or comments about shipping and receiving and/or shipping status, please contact customerservice@LifeExtension.com. For all other inquiries, please contact generalquestions@LifeExtension.com. We will endeavor to reply within 24 hours.
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Copyright © 1995-2006 Life Extension FoundationSM. All Rights Reserved.
NOVEMBER 11, 2006
The men and women whom John Kerry implies are stupid need principled leaders who will commit them to war only if the goal is uncompromised victory over the enemy. There is no substitute for victory in the long run.
NOVEMBER 10, 2006
Al-Qaeda In Iraq Praises Democrat Victory in U.S. Elections
Gloats over Rumsfeld resignation, vows to burn down White House
The Road Not Taken: Forfeiting a Majority -- Hugh Hewitt
Hewitt's take on the sabotage of the GOP by Jonn McCain and his RINO colleagues.
"Big Government Republicans" Flushed GOP Majority Down Toilet -- Rush Limbaugh
NOVEMBER 9, 2006
"I Feel Liberated!" -- Rush Limbaugh
Rush Limbaugh: Why Republicans Lost -- NewsMax.com
... and why this is no time for defeatism.
Rumsfeld to be Replaced by ex-CIA Man from Bush 41 Team -- WND
Unemployment by Legal Decree -- By Bettina Bien
A timely article considering the Dem majority will likely pass a hike in the national minimum wage.
NOVEMBER 8, 2006
Election Results and the National Exit Poll Analysis -- Fox News
Pelosi to become Speaker of House. Much more statism and higher taxes to follow.
ACORN Caught Again Cheating in Two More Places -- Opinion Journal
52nd coolest October on record (1895-2006) -- National Climatic Data Center
NOVEMBER 7, 2006
The Only Issue This Election Day -- Orson Scott Card
Card is a prolific and successful science fiction novelist and college instructor. Although he has been a Democrat, this article is a stern warning to Americans concerning the very serious, long-term consequences to the U.S. and the world in the wake of the Democrat Party's election wins today and its takeover of the House and Senate. Unfortunately, the results of today's congressional elections will be felt for many, many years.
SADDAM HUSSEIN SENTENCED TO DEATH BY HANGING
Saddam Sentenced to Hang -- Chicago Sun-Times
NY Times Admits Saddam Was Close to Building Atomic Bomb
by Jim Kouri
In an effort to hurt Republicans on November 7, the New York Times
published a story accusing the Bush Administration of posting Iraqi
documents that suggest Saddam Hussein's Iraq was close to building an
Congressional Republicans had urged the Bush White House to post on a
government website many of the documents discovered in Iraq following
the 2003 invasion. According to the Times, some of the documents
posted could help Iran or other countries build a nuclear weapon.
"Among the dozens of documents in English were Iraqi reports written
in the 1990s and in 2002 for UN inspectors in charge of making sure
Iraq abandoned its unconventional arms programs after the Persian
Gulf war. Some experts said at the time preceding the invasion that
Hussein's scientists were on the verge of building an atomic bomb,
possibly being as little as a year away; other experts disputed
that," said the Friday edition of the Times.
"European diplomats said this week that some of those nuclear
documents on the Web site were identical to the ones presented to the
UN Security Council in late 2002, as the U.S. prepared to invade
Iraq. But unlike those on the Web site, the papers given to the
Security Council had been extensively edited, to remove sensitive
information on unconventional arms."
Former intelligence officer and NYPD detective Sydney Francis says
that the New York Times is attempting to have it both ways.
"They say that Saddam wasn't developing nuclear weapons, but then
they say Saddam possessed documents that could help someone create a
nuclear bomb," says Francis.
The New York Times article falls short of admitting that Iraq was
close to building a nuclear bomb. Walking a tightrope, the Times
attempts to nail Bush as providing Iran and other countries a "road
map" to building an atom bomb on the Iraqi documents website, and at
the same time claims Saddam could not have built a bomb with those
very same documents.
"The Times is becoming more and more partisan with each passing day.
They want to say, 'President Bush allowed sensitive documents to be
posted for all to see which could help Iran create a nuclear bomb,
but those sensitive Iraqi documents could not have helped Iraq build
a nuclear bomb,'" said Francis.
"But analyzing their story indicates a strong possibility that Iraq
was on the verge of building an atomic bomb," he said
Mideast Terror Leaders Urge Americans to Vote Democrat -- WND
Texas puts 'virtual border watch' online -- Yahoo News
Principles Must Come Before Politics -- The Freeman
Britain’s Stern Review on Global Warming: It Could Be Environmentalism’s Swan Song-- George Reisman's Blog
* * *
Our troops in Iraq are sending John Kerry a message.
Jobless rate falls to 5-year low of 4.4% -- AP
WILL UN SANCTIONS STOP NORTH KOREAN
High-Ranking Defector: Only Kim's Ouster Would Stop Nukes -- Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Bill Clinton's Latest Glow Job -- Ann Coulter
The Clinton Legacy: Another Communist enemy regime with nuclear weapons. Ann reminds us of the details of the Clinton appeasement deal made with Pyongyang in 1994.
U.S. Intelligence Warns North Korea Preparing Second Nuke Test
As the Communist regime tries to whip up anti-US fervor in Pyongyang.
A lifesaving killer returns -- Jeff Jacoby
Millions around the world have died because of wrong-headed left-wing "environmentalists" and their suppression of this substance.
Adam Gadahn (né Adam Pearlman) Indicted for Treason
Believed to be hiding in Pakistan.
The Anarcho-Fascist Left Suppresses Freedom of Speech on Campus -- Michelle Malkin
North Korea Announces It Conducted Nuke Test
Another good reason not to let the Democrats get into power again.
The Clinton Legacy: North Korea's Bomb -- Dave Eberhart
How Clinton-Allbright Diplomacy Paid Off -- FrontPageMag
Remember who gave North Korea a nuclear reactor, opposed missile defense, and still thinks we can buy off the rogue regime?
New Bush Space Policy Stresses U.S. Freedom of Action
Huge Anti-Hugo Chavez Rally Marches in Caracas
* * *
The Consequences of Sin
by Joseph Farah
from WorldNetDaily.com October 7, 2006
Don't get me started, again, on the Mark Foley scandal.
I'd like to put it behind me.
I'd like to move on.
I'd like to get about the business of the people of the United States.
But I just have a few more thoughts to share.
I find myself waking up in the middle of the night thinking about new angles on this twisted story.
Like this one: Obviously, this was a set-up, right? I mean, someone had these IMs. Someone had them for a long time. Someone knew what Foley was doing – that he was victimizing kids in the Capitol. And that someone turned over the evidence, not to the FBI, not to the Capitol Police, not to the Justice Department, but to ABC News.
These IMs were old. That means this someone who had them actually, in a way, was like an accomplice to Foley. He or she or it enabled Foley to continue doing what he was doing with the kids.
Now, does that strike you as someone who cared a whit about the kids?
No, it doesn't. So who was it?
I think we've narrowed down the subject list. While I am on record as calling for the resignation of Speaker Dennis Hastert, it's mostly for stupidity. I don't believe for a minute he actually knew what Foley was doing. He didn't know because he didn't want to know. Hastert cares mostly about one thing – staying speaker. And that meant, in his mind, keeping as many seats Republican as possible – even if some of those seats were held by semi-closeted homosexuals clearly in danger of being blackmailed.
It never dawned on Hastert that the chickens would come home to roost as they did – with Foley being outed, stepping down a month before the election and the loss of a seat Republicans had counted on as a sure thing.
But somebody did make that calculation. Somebody who would be willing to sacrifice a few more kids for the real prize – the House of Representatives.
Who do you suppose that is?
Who is it, for instance, who thinks marriage is a controversial institution?
Who is it that thinks marriage is "discrimination"?
Who is it that thinks the Boy Scouts of America is the most subversive group in the country because of its commitment to being "morally straight"?
Who is it that makes the Boy Scouts public enemy No. 1 because they ban homosexual scoutmasters?
That's right. Those ideas have a home – a very large and spacious and comfortable home, I might add – in the Democratic Party.
Who is that that promotes the idea of lowering the age of consent?
Who is it that doesn't think children really belong to their parents?
Who is it that opposes parental consent before underage girls can get abortions?
Who is it that protects the anonymity of the mostly adult men who impregnate those girls?
That's right. Those ideas have a home – a very large and spacious and comfortable (if a bit non-traditional) home, I might add – in the Democratic Party.
Now I'm still steaming about the way the Republicans handled this. It illustrates once again that they are unfit to govern and why they are often called "the stupid party."
But, acknowledging what I have written here is 100 percent true, how is it that anyone takes the Democrats seriously when they condemn what Foley did? And where is the investigation into who aided and abetted crimes by Foley by concealing evidence for a year or more?
Joseph Farah is founder, editor and CEO of WND and a nationally syndicated columnist with Creators Syndicate. His latest book is "Taking America Back." He also edits the weekly online intelligence newsletter Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin, in which he utilizes his sources developed over 30 years in the news business.
* * *
Former Congressman Mark Foley may have been a Republican, but he ws no conservative or libertarian by any stretch. Here is a sample of his voting record made available by TRIMonline.org, revealing him to be a closet Democrat:
* * *
Drudge: FILTHY FOLEY ONLINE MESSAGES WERE PAGE 'PRANK GONE AWRY'
". . . an online prank that by mistake got into the hands of enemy political operatives," reports Drudge. The page, Jordan, who sent the instant messages now says he is not himself a homosexual. but it was just a joke to egg Foley on to see what he'd say. It turns out that the George Soros front group CREW has been holding the disgusting AOL instant messages for months, evidently to be released by Democrat media operatives as an "October Surprise" before the election and too late for Florida Republicans to replace Foley's name on the ballot. None of this excuses Foley's perverted conduct, of course. But it raises the question of what Democrats knew about the plan to drop this media stink bomb and when did they know about it? Did Nancy Pelosi know of Democrat dirty tricks? What about such Democrat hit men as Rohm Emanuel and James Carville? Maybe the Republicans should be demanding an investigation of how much key Democrats knew about Foley's pediphilic proclivities and when did they know it, and whether they suppressed the information until they could release it at the most politically opportune time -- and raise the issue of whether Pelosi et al should resign their seats.
Dow Hits Third Straight Record High -- AP News
Democrats experience angst.
-- OR PLANNED DEMOCRAT STINK BOMB?
'Gay' activist held info about Foley -- World Net Daily
During campaign to 'out' lawmakers said story would break before election
Speaker Hastert Dismisses Calls for Him to Resign
Rush: GOP Must Take Gloves Off
Attacks by Democrats 'Totally Coordinated'
Dems Lose Other Issues: DOW Hits High | Oil Cost Falls | No Hurricanes
Kim Should Invite Madeline Albright to Nuke Test
Clinton policies coming back to bite us in the butt.
The Carter-Clinton-Albright Deal
Model of Private Spacecraft Unveiled by Branson -- CBS
FLASHBACK (Lest we forget): Clinton Pardoned 16 FALN Terrorists
Chavez, Chomsky, and the Hate-America Industry -- Victor Davis Hanson
Left-Wing Conspiracy Theory on Falling Gas Prices -- Scott Whitlock
Bill Clinton, Bin Laden, and Hysterical Revisions -- The American Thinker
Secretary of State Condi Rice Says Clinton Claims are "Flatly False" -- NY Post
Former CIA Agent Scheuer: Clinton Is Lying
And this guy is not any pro-Bush or pro-GOP partisan by any stretch.
Ex-President Clinton Becomes Unhinged in TV Interview
This sociopath's web of lies is catching up to him. His attempt to rewrite the history of his administration is increasingly obvious and bogus to even a naive American public, even with his friends in the media covering up for him.
British Troops Kill Key Al Qaeda Figure -- Reuters
Another terrorist becomes peaceful.
VP Cheney says leading Democrats are soft on national security, says they're defeatists in the war against terrorism
Generals, spies attack Bush Iraq policy -- Beth Gorham
U.S. to Relax Certain Air Travel Restrictions -- NewsMax.com
UP Aerospace Rocket Crashes on Maiden Launch -- SPACE.com
They'll try again.
Internet Scams on the Rise as Criminals Phish for Access to Your Money
Oil Drops to Six-Month Low -- Reuters
Now at $59.94 a barrel -- a 23% decline since July.
Gasoline Prices Continue to Fall
Falling 13 cents per gallon this week . . . .
Saudi Arabia: No Evidence that Bin Laden is Dead -- Reuters
White House: Leak of Iraq Report Incomplete, Misleading -- Reuters
It was intended by anti-Bush partisans inside the Bush Administration to influence the upcoming political elections.
Ahmadinejad Speaks of 'Armageddon' -- Human Events
Iranian leader alludes to the alleged "hidden" Islamic messiah's imminent return. Belief in religious prophecy is one of the most dangerous mindsets in the world and is at the root of much strife, especially in the cauldron of irrationality known as the Middle East.
The Kennedy-Bush "No Child Left Behind" Reading Program Seen as Mismanaged Failure, According to Internal Report
When will we stop trying to use government bureaucratic programs to educate children? It is time to get rid of the Dept. of Education and turn education over to private enterprise.
The Clintonistas and 9/11 -- Larry Elder
New "dotmobi" Domain Names Spark Worries of Trademark Infringements
SPACE SHUTTLE ATLANTIS RETURNS SAFELY
AFTER TOUGH 12-DAY MISSION
Atlantis Returns to Cape Canaveral After Hard Work -- space.com
A truly awesome achievement.
"We are back in the assembly business,” Wayne Hale, NASA’s space shuttle program manager said of Atlantis’ STS-115 flight. “This is one of the most complex missions that has even been flown in space.”
SEPTEMBER 18, 2006
FIRST WOMAN SPACE TOURIST
IN ORBIT FOR $20 MILLION
Soyuz Launches Woman Tourist Into Space Along with New ISS Crew -- BBC
MORE ON A COLLAPSING POLITICAL WITCH HUNT
NOVAK GIVES HIS SIDE
The "liberal" media's attempt to frame Libby, Rove, and Cheney in "leakgate" collapses quietly as anti-Bush Colin Powell operative Richard Armitage confesses after almost three years. Columnist Robert Novak gives his side of the story, revealing Armitage to be less than fully truthful:
WASHINGTON -- When Richard Armitage finally acknowledged last week he was my source three years ago in revealing Valerie Plame Wilson as a CIA employee, the former deputy secretary of state's interviews obscured what he really did. I want to set the record straight based on firsthand knowledge.
First, Armitage did not, as he now indicates, merely pass on something he had heard and that he "thought" might be so. Rather, he identified to me the CIA division where Mrs. Wilson worked, and said flatly that she recommended the mission to Niger by her husband, former Amb. Joseph Wilson. Second, Armitage did not slip me this information as idle chitchat, as he now suggests. He made clear he considered it especially suited for my column.
An accurate depiction of what Armitage actually said deepens the
irony of him being my source. He was a foremost internal skeptic of the
administration's war policy, and long had opposed military intervention in
Iraq. Zealous foes of George W. Bush transformed me improbably into the
president's lapdog. But they cannot fit Armitage into the left-wing fantasy
of a well-crafted White House conspiracy to destroy Joe and Valerie Wilson.
The news that he, and not Karl Rove, was the leaker was devastating news for
A peculiar convergence had joined Armitage and me on the same
historical path. During his quarter of a century in Washington, I had no
contact with Armitage before our fateful interview. I tried to see him in
the first two and one-half years of the Bush administration, but he rebuffed
me -- summarily and with disdain, I thought.
Then, without explanation, in June 2003, Armitage's office said
the deputy secretary would see me. This was two weeks before Joe Wilson
surfaced himself as author of a 2002 report for the CIA debunking Iraqi
interest in buying uranium in Africa.
I sat down with Armitage in his State Department office the
afternoon of July 8 with tacit rather than explicit ground rules: deep
background with nothing said attributed to Armitage or even an anonymous
State Department official. Consequently, I refused to identify Armitage as
my leaker until his admission was forced by "Hubris," a new book by
reporters Michael Isikoff and David Corn that absolutely identified him.
Late in my hour-long interview with Armitage. I asked why the
CIA had sent Wilson -- lacking intelligence experience, nuclear policy or
recent contact with Niger -- on the African mission. He told the Washington
Post last week that his answer was: "I don't know, but I think his wife
worked out there."
Neither of us took notes, and nobody else was present. But I
recalled our conversation that week in writing a column, while Armitage
reconstructed it months later for federal prosecutors. He had told me
unequivocally that Mrs. Wilson worked in the CIA's Counter-Proliferation
Division and that she had suggested her husband's mission. As for his
current implications that he never expected this to be published, he noted
that the story of Mrs. Wilson's role fit the style of the old Evans-Novak
column -- implying to me it continued reporting Washington inside
Mrs. Wilson's name appeared in my column July 14, 2003, but it
was not until Oct. 1 that I heard about it from Armitage. Washington
lobbyist Kenneth Duberstein, Armitage's close friend and political adviser,
called me to say the deputy secretary feared he had "inadvertently" (the
word Armitage used in last week's interviews) disclosed Mrs. Wilson's
identity to me in July and was considering resignation. (Duberstein's phone
call was disclosed in the Isikoff-Corn book, which used Duberstein as a
source. They reported Duberstein was responsible for arranging my
unexpected interview with Armitage.)
Duberstein told me Armitage wanted to know whether he was my
source. I did not reply because I was sure that Armitage knew he was the
source. I believed he contacted me Oct. 1 because of news the weekend of
Sept. 27-28 that the Justice Department was investigating the leak. I cannot
credit Armitage's current claim that he realized he was the source only when
my Oct. 1 column revealed that the official who gave me the information was
"no partisan gunslinger."
Armitage's silence the next two and one-half years caused intense pain for his colleagues in government and enabled partisan Democrats in Congress to falsely accuse Rove of being my primary source. When Armitage now says he was mute because of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald's request, that does not explain his silent three months between his claimed first realization that he was the source and Fitzgerald's appointment on Dec. 30. Armitage's tardy self-disclosure is tainted because it is deceptive.
To find out more about Robert D. Novak and read his past columns, visit the Creators Syndicate web page at www.creators.com.
The Flameout of the Plame game -- Rowan Scarborough
As I predicted well over a year ago. ~Eddie
Saddam Had Ties to al Qaeda, Other Islamofascists -- Human Events
James Baker III Now Advising President Bush -- Insight
Acceding to his father's urgings, President Bush has made former Secretary of State James Baker a leading adviser on Iraq. This is not a good sign, folks. James Baker is part of the old Kissinger/Bush 41/Colin Powell NWO betrayers of U.S. national independence.
U.S. missile hits Taepodong-2 dummy in test -- Washington Times
Analyst Predicts Plunge in Gasoline Prices -- The Seattle Times
This will mean bad news for Democrat politicians who hope for an economic downturn to blame on Bush and the Republicans.
RUSH LIMBAUGH TO DO SHORT
COMMENTARY ON CBS
Invited by New Anchorette Katie Couric
* * *
Joe Wilson: The End of an
by Ann Coulter
Posted Sep 06, 2006
As National Public Radio described the story behind Joe Wilson's amusingly titled book, "The Politics of Truth" (available on the $1 table in fine bookstores everywhere), in May 2004:
"Last July Wilson wrote an op-ed piece in the New York Times saying that this particular intelligence regarding Iraq was false. A week later, columnist Robert Novak revealed that Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, was a CIA operative."
This is like saying: "John Hinckley shot Ronald Reagan; Reagan later died." Every word of that is true, but what it implies -- that Hinckley killed Reagan -- is false.
In the exact same way, the grand White House conspiracy promoted by Wilson and the mainstream media cites chronological events to prove causation.
The media's conspiracy theory is:
1. Wilson said Bush's famed "16 words" in his 2003 State of the Union address -- "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa" -- were a lie.
2. Wilson's wife was then revealed to be an "undercover" spy at the CIA, exposing Wilson and his family to danger.
3. Therefore, she was "outed" by the White House as retaliation against Wilson for calling Bush a liar.
Point No. 1 of liberals' conspiracy theory has been proved false since Britain's Butler Commission reviewed its government's pre-war intelligence on Iraq and concluded that "the British government had intelligence from several different sources indicating that this visit was for the purpose of acquiring uranium."
It was again proved false when our own Senate Intelligence Committee also concluded, in July 2004, that Saddam Hussein had sought uranium from Niger.
So there went the White House's motive for muddying up Wilson: Government fact-finding commissions, here and in the United Kingdom, were muddying up Wilson on their own simply by finding facts.
Point No. 2, that Wilson's wife was an undercover agent, has been proved false even to the willfully blind since Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald announced the conclusion to his pointless investigation last year, saying that Plame's employment with the CIA was not undercover, but merely "classified."
Everything is "classified" at the CIA. They have no idea when 19 terrorists are about to hijack commercial aircraft and slaughter 3,000 Americans, but the CIA is very good at play-acting James Bond spy games.
How covert was Valerie Plame at the CIA? Her top-secret code name was "Valerie Plame."
All this should have been enough to end conspiracy theories of White House skullduggery. But the nation's newsrooms simply continued asserting that someone in the Bush White House had "outed" Valerie Plame, despite the fact that revealing her employment with the CIA was not illegal.
Thus, as recently as January of this year, a New York Times editorial said the issue of the "leak" about Wilson's wife, whom the Times called "a covert CIA operative whose identity was leaked" (two strikes already), concerned "whether the White House was using this information in an attempt to silence Mrs. Wilson's husband, a critic of the Iraq invasion."
Wilson was more precise about the White House "leaker," variously naming Karl Rove, Lewis Libby and Dick Cheney as the source. He even described "a meeting in the suite of offices that the vice president occupies, chaired by either the vice president or Mr. Libby," where, Wilson said, the decision was made to destroy him.
(If the secret plan hatched in the vice president's office was to send evil spirits to enter Wilson's body and make him act like a fool, the plan worked brilliantly.)
Now it turns out, even point No. 3 of liberals' conspiracy theory was false: The original "leaker" of Plame's name to columnist Bob Novak -- not a crime -- was not in the White House at all. It was Richard Armitage, a State Department official and opponent of the Iraq war.
The information that Wilson's wife worked at the CIA had nothing to do with harming Wilson. It did not come from the White House. It did not even come from someone who supported the war in Iraq.
The rest of the world found out Armitage was Novak's source last week, something Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald knew from the first week of his investigation. So what was Fitzgerald investigating?
Even people who think the president should not be subject to civil suits in office do not deny that Bill Clinton had an affair with Monica Lewinsky and lied about it in a civil suit brought by Paula Jones. However irritating it is to liberals that lying about sex under oath is a crime, there was a crime that Ken Starr was investigating.
What was Fitzgerald investigating? Not only was there no underlying crime, there was not even -- as the Times put it -- "an attempt to silence Mrs. Wilson's husband" (or an attempt "to respond to people calling you a liar in the New York Times," as normal people put it).
Fitzgerald's entire investigation was nothing but a perjury trap from beginning to end for anyone who misremembered anything about who told whom what about a low-level nobody at the CIA who happened to be married to a Walter Mitty fantasist.
Ann Coulter is Legal Affairs Correspondent for HUMAN EVENTS and author of "Crimes and Misdemeanors," "Slander" and most recently of "How to Talk to a Liberal (If You Must)."
SEPTEMBER 3, 2006
Al Qaeda's No. 2 Terror
Boss in Iraq Captured
-- and he's singing like a canary!
Hamed Jumaa Farid al-Saeedi, known also as Abu Humam or Abu Rana, the mastermind behind multiple death squads, kidnapings, and suicide bombings, has been captured and interogated by Iraqi authorities. He is spilling his guts about others in the Al Qaeda organization and his revelations have already led to the death or capture of 11 other high-ranking Al Qaeda terrorists inside Iraq. This is a serious blow to Al Qaeda's operations in Iraq and liberal Democrat politicians in the United States.
Photo of Arrested Senior Al Qaeda Boss
Al-Qaida in Iraq's No. 2 Is Captured -- AP World
For those of you who watch television, Matt Drudge says that his sources indicate that light-weight liberal Katie Couric has invited Rush Limbaugh to appear on the CBS Evening News when she becomes anchor, and that he has accepted that invitation. We'll see.
THREE-YEAR LIBERAL MEDIA
ATTEMPT TO FRAME ROVE, LIBBY, & CHENEY EXPOSED
AS ANTI-BUSH CONSPIRACY
While Wilsongate was a bundle of media lies and innuendo which failed to force Karl Rove out of the White House, it nevertheless succeeded in misleading and influencing public opinion into believing that the Bush White House had tried to punish Wilson by "outing" his wife as a CIA employee -- even though it was Colin Powell's crony Richard Armitage who was the "leaker" from the very start -- and the media clique and political prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald knew it early on! Yet, how many people will continue to believe that the Bush White House was guilty of wrongdoing in all this? It was a bogus story from the beginning, based on outright lies from Joe Wilson, which the pro-Democrat, anti-Bush partisans of the establishment media ran with while covering up for Armitage and Powell as well as Wilson. It is very clear that the Establishment Liberal media knowingly allowed itself to be used for political purposes by anti-Bush elements from the State Department and CIA in a conspiracy to try to frame Rove and Cheney for a "crime" that never occurred.. (Not too surprisingly, Richard Armitage (former assistant to former Secretary of State Colin Powell) is now serving as a campaign advisor to presidential hopeful John McCain.)
As more and more people understand this story, it will likely give Republicans an increasing edge in the upcoming elections -- or at least a better chance of keeping the House from a Democrat takeover.
The Plamegate Hall of Shame
by Fred Barnes
Instead of Cheney or Rove or Libby, the real culprits are favorites
of the Washington elite and the mainstream press.
The rogues' gallery of those who acted badly in the CIA "leak" case
turns out to be different from what the media led us to expect. Note
that we put the word "leak" in quotation marks, because it's clear
now there was no leak at all, just idle talk, and certainly no smear
campaign against Joseph Wilson for criticizing President Bush's Iraq
policy. It's as if a giant hoax were perpetrated on the country--by
the media, by partisan opponents of the Bush administration, even by
several Bush subordinates who betrayed the president and their White
House colleagues. The hoax lingered for three years and is only now
being fully exposed for what it was. Let's start at the top of the
* Richard Armitage, the deputy secretary of state under Colin Powell,
was the first to reveal that Wilson's wife was a CIA employee. He
blabbed carelessly to Bob Woodward of the Washington Post, then to
columnist Robert Novak, who mentioned it in a July 2003 column.
Armitage, after admitting this to the FBI in October 2003, stood by
silently year after year as Vice President Cheney, Cheney's chief of
staff Scooter Libby, Karl Rove, and other White House officials were
blamed for what he had done, and President Bush suffered politically.
Loyalty is not Armitage's strong suit.
* Colin Powell, Bush's friend and secretary of state in the first
Bush term, knew what Armitage had done and never let on. He met with
Bush countless times as the White House was being pummeled in the
media and by Demo crats for outing a CIA agent to take revenge on her
husband. Bush called publicly for the leaker to be identified. Powell
knew the identity, but remained silent. Some friend.
* Patrick Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor in the "leak" case, was
aware of the source of Novak's story when he began his still-ongoing
investigation in December 2003. Yet finding that source was
supposedly the object of his probe. Now working with a second grand
jury, Fitzgerald surely knows the supposed conspiracy to defame
Wilson is (and always was) a fantasy. Still he won't let go.
Fitzgerald has proved once more why naming a special prosecutor is
a colossal mistake.
* The Ashcroft Justice Department. Armitage brought his story to
investigators after the CIA requested an investigation when the name
of Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, appeared in Novak's column. So when
the department decided weeks later to appoint a special prosecutor,
it already knew who had "leaked" Plame's name. Attorney General John
Ashcroft recused himself, leaving the decision to his deputy, James
Comey. Rather than face a torrent of partisan recriminations for
dropping the case, Comey passed the buck to Fitzgerald. There were no
profiles in courage at Justice.
* Joseph Wilson, an ex-ambassador and National Security Council
official in the Clinton and Bush I administrations, sparked the
"leak" controversy in the first place by writing in the New York
Times that Bush had lied in his 2003 State of the Union address about
Saddam Hussein's seeking uranium in Africa for nuclear weapons. The
CIA had sent Wilson to Niger in 2002 to check out precisely that
point, and he claimed to have debunked it. Later, the Senate
Intelligence Committee concluded that nearly everything Wilson wrote
or said about Bush, Cheney, Iraq, and his own trip to Africa was
untrue. Wilson was a fraud. "It's unfortunate that so many people
took him seriously," the Washington Post editorialized sorrowfully
* The media - especially the Washington Post and New York
Times--relied heavily on Wilson's reckless and unfounded charges to
wage journalistic jihad against the White House and Bush political
adviser Karl Rove. Reporters and columnists, based on little more
than Joe Wilson's harrumphing, bought the line that the White House
"leaked" Plame's name to discredit her husband. In an editorial last
January, the New York Times said the issue in the case "was whether
the White House was using this information in an attempt to silence
Mrs. Wilson's husband, a critic of the Iraq invasion, and in doing so
violated a federal law against unmasking a covert operative." The
paper's answer was yes.
So instead of Cheney or Rove or Libby, the perennial targets of media
wrath, the Plamegate Hall of Shame consists of favorites of the
Washington elite and the mainstream press. The reaction, therefore,
has been zero outrage and minimal coverage. The appropriate step for
the press would be to investigate and then report in detail how it
got the story so wrong, just as the New York Times and other media
did when they reported incorrectly that WMD were in Saddam's arsenal
in Iraq. Don't hold your breath for this.
Not everyone got the story wrong. The Senate Intelligence Committee
questioned Wilson under oath. It found that, contrary to his claims,
his wife had indeed arranged for the CIA to send him to Niger in
2002. It found that his findings had not, contrary to Wilson's claim,
circulated at the highest levels of the administration. And Bush's 16
words in the State of the Union to the effect that British
intelligence believed Saddam had sought uranium in Africa--words
Wilson insisted were fictitious--had been twice confirmed as true by
none other than the British government.
Worse, Wilson failed in the single reason for his trip to Niger: to
ferret out the truth about whether Iraq had sought uranium there.
Wilson said no, dismissing a visit by Iraqis in 1999. But journalist
Christopher Hitchens learned the trade mission was led by an
important Iraqi nuclear diplomat. And uranium, of course, was the
only thing Niger had to trade.
The fascination in Washington with the idea of a White House
conspiracy to ruin Plame's career and punish Wilson never made sense.
If there had been one, it had to be the most passive conspiracy in
history. The suspected mastermind was Rove, the Bush political
adviser. But all Rove did was to acknowledge off-handedly to two
reporters that he'd heard that Wilson's wife, whose name he didn't
know, was a CIA employee. And the two reporters were more likely to
agree with Wilson about the war in Iraq than with the Bush
administration. The conspiracy charge, the Post rightly concluded,
A few diehards in the media have tried to keep the conspiracy notion
alive. Michael Isikoff of Newsweek asserts that what Armitage did and
what Rove did were separate, and thus a White House smear campaign
could still have gone on. Yes, but it didn't. Jeff Greenfield of CNN
recalled a Post story in September 2003 that said "two top White
House officials" had contacted six reporters "and disclosed the
identity and occupation of Wilson's wife." But the Post itself has in
effect repudiated this dubious story.
What's left to do? Fitzgerald, in decency, should terminate his probe
immediately. And he should abandon the perjury prosecution of Libby,
the former Cheney aide. Libby's foggy memory was no worse than that
of Armitage, who forgot for two years to tell Fitzgerald he'd talked
to the Post's Woodward but isn't being prosecuted. Last but not
least, a few apologies are called for, notably by Powell and
Armitage, but also by the press. A correction--perhaps the longest
and most overdue in the history of journalism--is in order.
President Bush's Image: Suffering from Plamegate Media Smear -- Ray Robison
CIA Versus White House -- American Thinker
Missile Defense: From Reagan's Vision to Today's Imperative -- James A. Leggette & Michael W. Funk
* * *
Bring Back the Neoconservatives -- New York Sun
No, I am not a neoconservative, but they could not do any worse than Colin and now Condi.
LIBERTARIAN PATRIOT WALTER
TOP NATIONAL RADIO TALK SHOW
Economist Dr. Walter E. Williams made another triumphant return to the Golden EIB Microphone Friday as guest host of Rush Limbaugh radio show, the top-rated talk show in America with over 20 million listeners. In addition to fielding questions and comments from callers, Prof. Williams interviewed broadcaster Juan Williams about issues and challenges facing Black Americans.
Will the West Defend Itself? -- Dr. Walter E. Williams
Lebanon Cease-Fire Is a Victory for Hezbollah
Irvine, CA--"The cease-fire is a resounding victory for Hezbollah and for Islamic fascism," said Dr. Yaron Brook, executive director of the Ayn Rand Institute.
"How can President Bush declare that 'Hezbollah suffered a defeat' in Lebanon when it was neither disarmed nor disheartened by the fighting? How can President Bush declare that the resolution addresses the 'root cause' of Hezbollah's aggression when it does not even mention Iran and Syria for their support of Hezbollah and other terrorist groups?
"A U.N. resolution calling for the disarming of Hezbollah in Lebanon is not the same thing as the actual disarming of Hezbollah in Lebanon--let alone the defeat of Hezbollah throughout the Middle East. And by urging Israel to end its military offensive, the administration has ended any possibility that Hezbollah will actually be destroyed.
"The only way to end the threat from Islamic totalitarian groups like Hezbollah and their state sponsors is to inflict crushing devastation upon them by aggressive military action."
* * *
The Cult of Soros by Horowitz and Poe
AUGUST 24, 2006
GOOD GUYS STILL BEING TREATED LIKE BAD GUYS?
Border agents face 20 years for doing their jobs
Two U.S. Border Patrol Agents, have been found guilty, and now face
prison terms of upwards of 20 years for doing their jobs--apprehending
an illegal alien at our border! Even more outrageous, this illegal alien is
suing the U.S. for $5 million for violating his civil rights! What is going on here?
Border Agents Face 20 Years in Prison -- Grassfire.org
PROGRESS AND SETBACKS IN IRAQ
More Than 100 Terror Suspects Captured in Iraq Last Week
British Report: Iran Wields Considerable Influence in Iraq
Gilchrist Endorses Libertarian Art Olivier for Governor
In a live interview Monday evening on the John Ziegler radio program (KFI AM 640 KHz 7 PM to 10 PM weeknights), Minutemen cofounder Jim Gilchrist announced his public endorsement of Art Oliver, Libertarian Party candidate for Governor of California in protest against Gov. Schwarzenegger's left-leaning policies, especially his vacillation on the issue of illegal immigration.
* * *
Missile Defense Is Crucial
by Charles R. Smith
The summer of 2006 has been quite a show.
The wave of missiles and missile threats has left us with a major turning point in modern military history.
First, the global concern over Iran and its fledgling nuclear weapons program reached the United Nations.
The diplomats seem to have few options to control the wild-eyed leadership in Tehran. The Iranians, meanwhile, are using the time to continue their nuclear option along with a robust missile development. A reaction to this was easily visible inside Israel, the number one target of any future Iranian missile attack.
The Israelis have upgraded their new Arrow defense missile system and increased the effective range of its Greenpine control radar. The anticipation of a future strike from Iran also forced Israel closer to the United States in seeking a common missile defense system.
The first sign of this is the advanced versions of the PAC-3 Patriot arriving in Israel, followed by a quick series of successful tests by the IDF.
Then we had the rush of launches from North Korea. North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il's fascination with long range bottle-rockets reached its peak when a Tae Po Dong 2 missile failed after 40 seconds of flight. The data from various sources in South Korea, Japan, and from warships stationed off the North Korean coast showed the Tae Po Dong 2 was aimed at Hawaii.
Japan is responding to the threat. A leading Japanese paper, the Yomiuri Shimbun, stated that Tokyo is considering a faster track for deployment of its own anti-missile system.
The report came a day after the Japanese parliament approved legislation allowing for a rapid response to any ballistic missile attack. According to the report, Japan will start deploying a missile shield by the end of March 2007.
Under the current plan, Japan will start deploying Patriot 3 (PAC-3) surface-to-air missiles in 2006. In addition, one of Japan's four Aegis destroyers is to be refitted with SM-3 missiles.
The bill was enacted by parliament's upper house revised the current law that requires the approval of the cabinet and Japanese security council to shoot down an incoming missile. The new law allows the defense minister to issue orders to shoot down any incoming missile without seeking approval from the cabinet and security council.
The final act of the summer - or at least for the moment - came from Hezbollah and Lebanon. The rain of rockets over the Israeli border brought a swift retaliation and loads of lethal firepower from the IDF. The Hezbollah rocket barrage turned out to be no more than minimal threat even to civilians. The data shows that only 39 civilians were killed by the estimated 4,000 missiles fired by Hezbollah and over half of these people were Arabs.
However, Israel was unable to defend itself against the rain of short range missiles fired by Hezbollah. The Hezbollah attacks are seen as a warning. Future opponents will use more sophisticated weapons potentially armed with more deadly warheads.
The lack of a defense has brought back a system jointly developed by the United States and Israel. The Israeli government is working with the United States to restart a canceled laser anti-missile system named THEL, which stands for "Tactical High Energy Laser."
The manufacturer, Northrop Grumman, originally developed THEL for combat but it remained cumbersome to deploy, requiring several vehicles that covered nearly a football field. However, live fire tests demonstrated that THEL was very successful.
Tests last year showed the powerful chemical laser was able to knock down barrages of incoming mortar shells, short range rockets and even artillery shells. Israel dropped out of the project early in 2006 because of the multi-billion dollar cost.
Now the Israelis want a new version of THEL.
The developer of THEL, Northrop Grumman, has openly stated that it can have the laser anti-missile system ready in 18 months, at a development cost of $400 million.
The estimate is that each THEL unit would cost about $50 million, and eight or nine would be required to cover the Lebanese border. Northrop Grumman is also offering a smaller version of the laser defense system called Skyguard.
Skyguard is designed to be deployed around airports to protect commercial aircraft from man portable anti-aircraft missiles.
THEL was offered to the U.S. Army. However, the cost and lack of mobility for such a large system led the Army to select a variation of the U.S. Navy Phalanx system.
Phalanx is a point-defense 20 mm gun that provides a defense against incoming targets.The Phalanx Gatling gun fires cannons shell at either 3,000 or 4,500 rounds-per-minute. The system has proven itself to be very reliable and effective against incoming targets.
The Army selection is a fine choice for battlefield operations but it is not designed to defend potential targets such as the "Green" zone inside Baghdad from mortar or rocket fire. Phalanx, like any gun system, fires projectiles. In the case of Phalanx, hundreds or even thousands of bullets fly out of the system in only a few seconds. Those that miss any incoming target continue on in a ballistic flight and fall to the ground.
The U.S. Navy does not have a problem with shells falling harmlessly into unpopulated seas. However, a spray of 20 mm shells fired from the Baghdad Green zone at incoming mortar rounds will fall in the surrounding populated areas with predictable results.
THEL, like any energy weapon, has no such problem. The laser beam does not have the kind of potential for "collateral" damage that Phalanx does since spent shells do not fall to the ground.
Thus, it is no surprise that the Army has a renewed interest in THEL and the newer Skyguard system. Israel would like the United States to help with the cost of purchasing THEL and Skyguard. Israel already gets over $2 billion a year in military aid from America, and a new anti-missile laser defense can come out of that aid.
Clearly the new laser defense systems could be very useful in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Lasers and anti-missile systems like Arrow and Patriot PAC-3 are the future. Iran and North Korea have demonstrated that their missile programs are the future threat.
A solid defense is needed to deal with this threat.
The summer is not over yet but we already can draw some distinct conclusions. The prime lesson learned is that a missile defense is necessary and available.
ANOTHER ANTI-ANGLO TERROR
FOILED BY BRITISH POLICE
21 Suspects Held
A terrorist conspiracy to blow up several commercial passenger airliners while in flight between the U.K. and the U.S. has been quashed by Scotland Yard and London police. Read details....
Tim Walberg's Win in Michigan
a Victory for Border Control & U.S. Sovereignty
Tim Walberg won an upset victory against liberal/moderate Republican opponent (endorsed by President Bush) in Michigan's 7th District today.
Liberal GOPers Bemoan Walberg Win
A Mini-Interview with tim Walberg -- John Hawkins
Walberfg for Congress
* * *
Soldiers from Iran killed in Lebanon -- WND
Reuters Exposed As Using
Faked "News" Photos
with Anti-Israeli Bias
Reuters wire service has been exposed as using computer-faked photographs with an anti-Israeli bias. Charles Johnson of LittleGreenFootballs.com, discovered a doctored photo of an Israeli plane allegedly firing a barrage of "missiles" at downtown Beirut. But the massacre and destruction of downtown Beirut depicted in the picture never happened. Smoke and buildings were blended using computer software into the background to make it look like a major urban area had been devastated by an Israeli attack. In another picture of an Israeli Air Force plane, the "missiles" (which were actually a single flare in the original picture) depicted were apparently created using the "clone" feature of PhotoShop.
I say "Hooray!" for Charles Johnson and other media watchdogs and whistleblowers. they are heroes on behalf of truth.
Extreme Makeover - Beirut Edition -- LGF
Reuters Call the Doctor, Take 2
Reuters admits altering Beirut photo
Of course, there is mounting evidence that the mainstream media of the Liberal Establishment has been putting out fraudulent news reports for decades, but now -- thanks to vigilant media watchers like Johnson and others in the "blogosphere" -- at least some of it is being exposed. I say "some" only because most fakes cannot really be detected if they are done carefully. The photographer (Adrian Hajj) who crafted these propaganda photos and others was sloppy in his photo fakery, and has been exposed. Trying to maintain what credibility it still has, Reuters (to its limited credit at least) has fired this particular photographer when he was exposed as submitting fraudulent pictures for news stories. But there is little doubt in my mind that this is only the proverbial "tip of the iceberg" of phony news. It is not the first time Reuters has been caught doing this and one can only imagine how much fakery they've already gotten away with. Just as ABC "News" and Dan Rather were exposed as using faked documents in an attempt to bias the 2004 presidential election, so too will other elements of the establishment myth-making machine be under the increasingly watchful eyes of patriotic Internet whistleblowers.
Still More Photo Fraud by Reuters
Another Reuters Employee Had Issued 'Zionist Pig' Death Threat Against Blogger Media Watcher
Rush Weighs in on Phony "al-Reuters" Photos
Reutergate Is News Everywhere But in the (formerly) Mainstream Media
* * *
WHATEVER YOUR POSITION ON ISRAEL IS,
HEZBOLLAH ARE THE BAD GUYS
Those very very few "libertarians" who voice support for Hezbollah -- like the knee-jerk "anti-war" libertarians who got swept up into the "anti-war" (anti-Bush, anti-US, and anti-freedom) propaganda agenda of the Left and Howard Dean's Democrat Party -- are even more marginal in influence than the Libertarian Party as a whole. Being a minority, Libertarians have little influence one way or another on the current administration's policies vis-a-vis war or Middle East foreign policy. The even much tinier minority of pro-Hezbo individuals who posture as "libertarians" has no influence whatsoever. The only thing they can do is further embarrass real libertarians and discredit true libertarianism in the eyes of those not familiar with the libertarian case for the laissez-faire republic.
It is clear to me that the Israelis have used restraint up until now. They even abided by the UN's resolution #1559 for the past six years -- even while the Lebanese government did not fulfill its end of the deal. After two of its soldiers have been kidnapped and hundreds of missiles sent to rain terror down upon Israeli cities, it seems to me that Israel has a right to defend itself from the Hezbos even though the Hezbos hide behind Lebanese civilians, including women and children.
Let us be clear: it is Hezbollah, not Israel, that is holding Lebanon hostage. The civilian deaths are primarily the responsibility of Hezbollah which is launching its missile attacks from civilian homes and communities.
So, I cannot blame the Israelis for going after their attackers in Lebanon. If the Lebanese military is unwilling or unable to keep Hezbollah from taking over parts of Lebanon and using those areas as staging grounds to strike against people, then I don't see that Israel has much choice but to respond.
If the Lebanese army, even such that it is, would join with or cooperate with the Israeli defense efforts in fighting and routing out Hezbollah from Lebanon, then that would do a lot more to achieve a lasting peaceful solution for Lebanon than if it either continues to stand back and do nothing or actively sides with Hezbollah (which, unfortunately, some elements within the Lebanese army are apparently doing).
What the IDF is doing is logical and militarily necessary to keep further arms and terrorists from pouring in from Syria. If they can cut off movements from Syria and isolate the major concentrations of Hezbollah in the south, then either Israel by itself or maybe with the help of a NATO mix of forces could eventually break the back of Hezbullah and destroy its remaining weapons and ability to attack anybody. But unless Israel can control the borders and entry points in Lebanon, Iran and Syria will continue to fuel Hezbollah from outside Lebanon.
Again, if the Lebanese government had been strong enough to control its own borders and quash Hezbollah in the first place, then what Israel is doing now would never have been necessary.
Peace and freedom require a government that is strong enough to perform its proper basic functions. I wholeheartedly agree with Frederic Bastiat, Ludwig von MIses, Ayn Rand, Robert Nozick, George Reisman, Walter Williams, Adam Smith, Leonard Read, and Milton Friedman on the need for a political government constitutionally limited to a general policy of laissez faire that is strong enough to perform its legitimate, proper functions (which include local police, courts backed with the police power, national defense, and other ancillary functions). Aspects of coercion -- violence, fraud, foreign threats -- are the proper purview of government (society's institution of legal coercion). As I have pointed out before in my essays, this does not mean I in any way oppose private, purely market means for deterring crime -- night watchmen, defensive guards at warehouses, strong locks on doors, burglar alarms, or perimeter force fields -- or any other prophylactic measures for discouraging criminal violence. But, so far, purely defense-in-advance market mechanisms do not succeed in stopping all or most crime.
The idea of a criminal justice system is to attempt to achieve some semblance of (admittedly imperfect) justice by means of retaliatory coercion after the fact of a crime. That is not a market function. Market entities do not involve the use of any coercion at all, either initiatory or retaliatory. Anyone who tries to tell you otherwise is a con man. Don't fall for it. Market transactions, if and when they occur, are voluntary -- i.e., they are relationships in which the wills of all the participants coincide -- agree with -- the terms of the relationship or deal. This is not the case with entities that use violent force to arrest, detain, and imprison criminals or alleged criminals.
The late Murray Rothbard at one time tried to palm off his theory of "anarcho-capitalist" retaliatory agencies as a purely market alternative to politics. It is not, of course, but some libertarians even bought into that notion. What Rothbard's "anarcho-capitalism" amounts to is just the same old statism the world has always had -- competing states and gangs. It does not limit coercion to protecting rights. There is no such thing as a constitutional anarchy. There is nothing in his system of anarcho-statism which would limit the use of coercion to a policy of laissez faire (leaving peaceful adults alone as much as possible while stomping on criminals). Warring gangs and states are not the same as private firms in noncoercive market competition. Strife among vying coercive groups in the political arena results in less freedom and less peace, not more. It is not the same thing as private enterprises which compete noncoercively by offering various alternatives for customers to choose from.
In my judgment, the best approach to liberty was the one embarked upon with so much success by the American founding fathers based on the ideas of Locke, Polybius, and others -- the use of law and constitution and bills of rights and checks and balances as tools for limiting the government to its proper jurisdiction, with a widespread respect for law and the rights of peaceful men among a basically decent populace. We abandon that approach for the chimera and folly of "anarchy" at our peril. Instead, we ought to be picking up where the founders left off and trying to improve and perfect what they began.
Ludwig von Mises advocated Laissez faire and opposed anarchism
JULY 22, 2006
Pacifists Versus Peace
by Thomas Sowell
One of the many failings of our educational system is that it sends out into the world people who cannot tell rhetoric from reality. They have learned no systematic way to analyze ideas, derive their implications and test those implications against hard facts.
"Peace" movements are among those who take advantage of this widespread inability to see beyond rhetoric to realities. Few people even seem interested in the actual track record of so-called "peace" movements — that is, whether such movements actually produce peace or war.
Take the Middle East. People are calling for a cease-fire in the interests of peace. But there have been more cease-fires in the Middle East than anywhere else. If cease-fires actually promoted peace, the Middle East would be the most peaceful region on the face of the earth instead of the most violent.
Was World War II ended by cease-fires or by annihilating much of Germany and Japan? Make no mistake about it, innocent civilians died in the process. Indeed, American prisoners of war died when we bombed Germany.
There is a reason why General Sherman said "war is hell" more than a century ago. But he helped end the Civil War with his devastating march through Georgia — not by cease fires or bowing to "world opinion" and there were no corrupt busybodies like the United Nations to demand replacing military force with diplomacy.
There was a time when it would have been suicidal to threaten, much less attack, a nation with much stronger military power because one of the dangers to the attacker would be the prospect of being annihilated.
"World opinion," the U.N. and "peace movements" have eliminated that deterrent. An aggressor today knows that if his aggression fails, he will still be protected from the full retaliatory power and fury of those he attacked because there will be hand-wringers demanding a cease fire, negotiations and concessions.
That has been a formula for never-ending attacks on Israel in the Middle East. The disastrous track record of that approach extends to other times and places — but who looks at track records?
Remember the Falkland Islands war, when Argentina sent troops into the Falklands to capture this little British colony in the South Atlantic?
Argentina had been claiming to be the rightful owner of those islands for more than a century. Why didn't it attack these little islands before? At no time did the British have enough troops there to defend them.
Before there were "peace" movements and the U.N., sending troops into those islands could easily have meant finding British troops or bombs in Buenos Aires. Now "world opinion" condemned the British just for sending armed forces into the South Atlantic to take back their islands.
Shamefully, our own government was one of those that opposed the British use of force. But fortunately British prime minister Margaret Thatcher ignored "world opinion" and took back the Falklands.
The most catastrophic result of "peace" movements was World War II. While Hitler was arming Germany to the teeth, "peace" movements in Britain were advocating that their own country disarm "as an example to others."
British Labor Party Members of Parliament voted consistently against military spending and British college students publicly pledged never to fight for their country. If "peace" movements brought peace, there would never have been World War II.
Not only did that war lead to tens of millions of deaths, it came dangerously close to a crushing victory for the Nazis in Europe and the Japanese empire in Asia. And we now know that the United States was on Hitler's timetable after that.
For the first two years of that war, the Western democracies lost virtually every battle, all over the world, because pre-war "peace" movements had left them with inadequate military equipment and much of it obsolete. The Nazis and the Japanese knew that. That is why they launched the war.
"Peace" movements don't bring peace but war.
* * *
THE ESSENCE OF LEFTISM
America is in the midst of a giant ideological war between the Left and the Right, and it has been for some time. What is the fundamental nature of that conflict? It is a battle of ideas – very different ideas and strongly opposing ideas. What, then, are the fundamental differences in the main ideas in this war we are in between the "Left" and the "Right" in the United States of America today?
On the most fundamental level and very broadly we say that it is the conflict between collectivism versus individualism -- but that is pretty abstract. What specifically does it mean in terms of differences between overall policy prescriptions and political platforms and actual enacted programs? What is the essence of the agenda of the Left as opposed to that of the Right?
The fundamental essence of political leftism is not merely its snarling antipathy to "big business" or corporations or the idea of a market economy in general, or even its abiding contempt for and resentment against "bourgeois values " (thrift, honesty, work ethic, punctuality, a desire to make a better life for oneself and ones family, etc.). The essence of political leftism is in its opposition to the concept and institution of private ownership of property. To the extent that someone disrespects private property rights – either personally or through the political policies he advocates – to that extent he is a left-winger. Likewise, to the extent that a person consistently upholds and respects the private property rights of others, to that extent he is a "right winger" (in America).
As Ayn Rand reminded us, without property rights, no other rights are possible. Without private property boundaries, both in our persons and in our external possessions and in land, commercial trade or voluntary relationships in general could not function. An advanced culture based on contract and choice -- rather than feudal birth status or socialist top-down commands – could not exist.
Freedom and free markets presuppose and depend on the security of private property rights. Only when property boundaries are clearly defined and property rights are secured from coercive violation, either by criminals or by arbitrary government intervention, can incentives for long-term private planning develop, calculated risks undertaken, opportunities made available, and a sophisticated capitalist economy emerge and flourish.
A free market economy – an economy unhampered by political regulations, rigid controls, bureaucratic guidelines, high taxes, mandatory racial quotas, compulsory minimum wage rates, redistribution programs, and other coercive distortions – presupposes the principles of self-ownership and private property rights in peaceful adult citizens. The Left attacks freedom and civilization at this crucial foundation level by denouncing and undermining private property rights at every opportunity, from the income tax and antitrust laws to the Supreme Court’s infamous Kelo decision..
And since the related principles of Self-Ownership and Private Property are the bedrock core of the political perspective known as libertarianism, the Left’s ultimate target is individual liberty and it assiduously fights any significant movement in the direction toward true libertarianism. Libertarianism is the ultimate ideological opposite to Leftism and the Left’s anti-property, anti-individualist Orwellian agenda.
The Left often postures as being in favor of "tolerance" – but only in such superficial matters as skin color, not in the realm of ideas. The Left’s long-time and continuing ideological monopoly in America’s universities seethes with anti-conservative and anti-libertarian bigotry and intolerance much uglier and much more unrelenting than the personal prejudice of any stereotyped Southern racist.
Leftists also claim they are for freedom – but it is not the freedom from coercive interference with peaceful adults for which libertarians stand. No. The leftists clamor for freedom from want, freedom from deprivation, freedom from poverty, freedom from being disadvantaged, freedom from discrimination, freedom from having one’s feelings hurt, freedom from the real world, and other such bogus "freedoms" which, if they can be achieved at all, come only at the forced expense of productive peaceful adult citizens. They think people have a "right" to "free" medical care, food, schooling, retirement funding, disability assistance, housing subsidies, etc. – all to be paid for by the forced expropriation of other people. In other words, they believe that some people have a "right" to violate the rights of others.
This is emphatically not the same concept of individual rights championed by true libertarians or by America’s Founding Fathers. The Left hates America and its libertarian heritage because, traditionally, private property rights and freedom of commerce were upheld and secured to a far better degree in the United States than in other previous cultures.
The attack on America, on rational moral values, and on individual freedom comes almost entirely from the Left in this country – from the limousine "liberal" leftists who live in San Francisco and Marin counties to the hard-left socialists who have dominated the Democrat Party since 1972, and the semi-literate America-hating Hollywood leftists who have contempt for even the middle-class audiences they entertain on TV and the silver screen.
There can be no stable compromise between the libertarian / conservative Right and the anti-private property tyrannical Left. They are polar opposites. Don’t kid yourself into believing otherwise.
Defeating the Left is not an impossible dream and it does not mean having to convert every American – or even a majority – to our laissez-faire prescription (although that would be great!). That isn’t necessary. Bad ideas and their derivative fallacies must be refuted and fought with good ideas. And the more fundamental the ideas involved, the more powerful an impact they eventually have on the course of civilization. Merely using marketing gimmicks to try to trick people into voting "Libertarian" in one or two elections is not likely to result in any durable victory for freedom. Before we can get large numbers of voters to cast their ballots for less government involvement in our lives and businesses instead of still more regulations, taxes, and counter-productive "social" programs, a sufficient number of influential thought leaders must have a sufficient grasp of the refutations of the anti-free market fallacies and some appreciation for the libertarian alternatives to the failed bureaucratic schemes of the moribund Liberal-Left Establishment. Such mavens will then be able to apply these truths to particular issues in news stories and public controversies.
The great 19th century libertarian economist and statesman Frederic Bastiat used humorous analogies and short stories to drive home the lessons he had learned from J.B. Say, Adam Smith, and David Ricardo. When the pro-freedom Right has a weekly TV program like Saturday Night Live which ridicules the sick notions of liberalism and humorously exposes the contradictions and hypocrisies of prominent leftists (the way Rush Limbaugh does on his radio show), Americans will laugh the fallacies of the anti-capitalist Left off the stage. Politicians like Ted Kennedy or John Kerry or Albert Gore will lose all credibility and will cease to run for public office. They will crawl back under their rocks where they belong. Even now, they have nothing but old, stale, failed ideas – nothing new or positive to contribute.
Where will the pro-capitalist thought leaders and talented individuals come from? What can we do to help provide an environment for their emergence? Initially, this will mean getting more of the right kind of person to read the right books – such as Capitalism by George Reisman, Atlas Shrugged and other works by Ayn Rand, The Law and What is Seen by Bastiat, Economics In One Lesson by Hazlitt, The Anti-Capitalist Mentality by Mises, The Road to Serfdom by Hayek, Capitalism and the Historians, and other such classics defending laissez faire. and summaries of their principal arguments found in such books as The Incredible Bread Machine by Richard W. Grant and so on. There are many other good libertarian books, of course, but these are among those which have formed the foundation of modern libertarianism and on which later works attained their footing.
Who are the potential thought leaders? We cannot always predict who will be sufficiently capable and articulate and motivated to take up the task of persuasively retailing to their friends or audiences, either as writers or as talk show hosts or as teachers or in other capacities, the truths and refutations of fallacies found in Reisman, Rand, Bastiat, Hazlitt, Mises, and the rest. The brighter high school and college students should be targeted of course, but others should not be excluded if they don’t happen to fall into those categories. It will always be a difficult feat of judgement to steer a course between spending too much time or effort on someone who turns out to be closed-minded to ideas on the one hand and writing someone off too hastily on the other. But when a "critical mass" of capable individuals (not a majority by any stretch) have read and sufficiently understood the right ideas, their influence will begin to spread quickly in the culture.
Think that is "unrealistic" or not possible? Think again. The only libertarian talking head I know of on regular (non-cable) television became a libertarian by reading certain specific myth-shattering books. I am talking about John Stossel who is (still) employed by ABC News and produces a regular program called "Give Me a Break" on that network. How did he become a libertarian thought leader? He read Atlas Shrugged in 1996. Since then he has made his own personal investigation of this war of ideas between individual liberty and private property under limited constitutional government on the one hand and the anti-private property, anti-capitalist Left on the other. He has read books on market economics and classical individual rights philosophy. He has absorbed the truths brought forward by libertarian authors. He has done his homework. Because he was already ensconced in the bowels of the Liberal media establishment, it was too late to screen Stossel out – though there is assuredly an ongoing attempt to have him fired by the organized Left, so intolerant is it of even a single dissenting voice on network television.
So there he has been, for the past several years, alongside Barbara Wah-Wah and other liberal fascists, giving an alternative perspective – the libertarian perspective -- on current events and political issues from environmentalism to FDA regulations. And don’t get distracted by side issues – such as questioning whether or not Stossel is your idea of a "pure" libertarian or is "hard core" enough. He is doing pretty much what he can do given the circumstances in which he works. He is a libertarian hero for bringing the pro-freedom perspective to millions of America by way of the medium which heretofore was dominated almost entirely by the Liberal-left establishment.
May a thousand Stossels bloom!
* * *
The Red-Green alliance against the West -- Brookes News
Astronauts Repair International Space Station -- KFI News
FBI Uncovers Jihadists' Plot to Bomb New York's Holland Tunnel, Flood City -- NY Daily News
Major Racist Hispanic Organization Meets This Weekend In L.A.
"La Raza" says it represents the Mexican "race" and opposes all others. Do they want to take over the southwest USA and turn it into a Third World hell hole? Featured speakers include Bill Clinton and Karl Rove.
Vision That Inspires Some and Scares Others: Aztlan -- L A Times
La Raza (The "Race") Contributors List
Reagan's SDI Shield Inches Closer -- Christopher Holton
How to Counter North Korea's Growing Missile Threat -- Baker Spring
'Star Wars' Critics Stay Silent -- Human Events
Space Shuttle Discovery Blasts Off from Cape Canaveral
To Rendezvous with International Space Station with German Passenger
N. Korea Fires Ballistic Missiles -- Fox
Long-range missile fails roughly 35 seconds into flight; five mid-range missiles fall into sea.Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns said on Monday that North Korea should try to avoid "any type of provocative activity" and return to negotiations on its nuclear weapons program.North Korean Missile Launch Fails -- Fox News Video
"They have heard from just about everybody in the international community, including China, including Russia, that that would be not only extremely unwise, it would be opposed by all the countries in the world," Burns said in a taped interview with C-SPAN.
State Department spokeswoman Julie Reside added that if North Korea were to try to launch a missile, "the U.S. would respond appropriately, including by taking the necessary measures to protect ourselves."
Former Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger said that the latest episode by North Korea "ought to indicate how much more money" needs to be invested in missile defense programs.
"Whether that missile worked this time or not, as long as they can play around with these things ... sooner or later they're going to get something" that can reach the United States, he said.
Added Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif.: "Now we're faced with a situation where some lunatic in North Korea may well be developing a rocket that could hit the United States with a nuclear missile. ... So isn't it good to be prepared? Aren't we happy that Ronald Reagan didn't give in and we are now in the process of deploying a system that could protect us against this?"
In anticipation of North Korea's provocations, the North American Aerospace Defense Command placed its Colorado headquarters on a heightened state of alert a few weeks ago. An official at Northcom's Peterson Air Force base told FOX News the decision was not routine, but based on prudent planning.
The decision to raise the threat level to "bravo plus," one step higher than "alpha" or "low" threat level, comes as Northcom closely watches actions by North Korea.
White House condemns 'provocative behavior'
Asian Nations Condemn Launches
Japan to Introduce U.N. Resolution
South Korea Calls for Return to Nuke Talks
Tests Spur Demands for Accelerated U.S. Missile Defense
Saddam's WMDs: The Russian
by Rod D. Martin
"Every senior member of a Western,
European, or Asian intelligence service
whom I have ever met all agree that the Russians
moved the last of the WMDs out of Iraq in
the last few months before the war." -- John Loftus
Senator Rick Santorum's announcement last week of over 500 weapons of mass destruction found in Iraq went largely ignored by the mainstream media.
The National Ground Intelligence Center's newly-declassified report proves conclusively that Saddam Hussein lied -- and George Bush and Bill Clinton told the truth -- about Iraq's WMDs. This doesn't square, of course, with the media's mantra that “Bush lied, kids died”, so they gave it short shrift.
But 500 hidden sarin, nerve and VX weapons is no small thing: it's one of the world's major chemical weapons arsenals. Its presence completely vindicates George Bush and Tony Blair. Though unreported, it's obviously major news.
Yet there's an even bigger story. And you probably haven't heard it either.
Earlier this year, some of America's top counter-terrorism and national security experts gathered for their 2006 Intelligence Summit. There, UN weapons inspector Bill Tierney provided a first-ever translation of captured tapes featuring Saddam Hussein and his lieutenants discussing -- you guessed it -- WMDs.
One tape features Saddam and Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz discussing the ease with which Iraq could conduct -- and arrange for a third party (presumably al Qaeda) to carry out -- a biological weapons attack against America in such a way that "they wouldn't finger us."
Others detail Iraq's success in hiding its rockets and its chemical weapons factories from UN inspectors. Saddam himself makes clear -- as the Duelfer Report later asserted -- that his program, far from dormant, would crank into full gear as soon as sanctions were lifted.
Most important: the tapes conclusively establish that Saddam had no intention of destroying his WMDs after the Gulf War -- just as the NGIC report now proves.
But Saddam clearly had far more than the 500 older WMDs the NGIC found. So where did they go?
John Shaw, Deputy Undersecretary of Defense just before and after Iraq's liberation, answered:
"[T]hey went to Syria and Lebanon."
According to Shaw, the WMDs “were moved by Russian Spetsnaz [special forces] out of uniform, that were specifically sent to Iraq to move the weaponry and eradicate any evidence of its existence."
Shaw was one of the first to learn of the countless (universally confirmed) Iraqi truck convoys crossing the Syrian border (and returning empty) in the run-up to the war. At the summit, he detailed how former Russian intelligence head and KGB general Yevgeni Primakov came to Iraq in December 2002 -- the same month Israel's Mossad first detected the operation -- to supervise the WMDs' removal. Primakov's orders were "to erase all trace” of Russia's extensive, long-term involvement in Saddam's WMD programs.
This revelation confirms what National Geospatial Intelligence Agency head Lt. General James Clapper, WMD inspector David Kay, former Justice Department official John Loftus, top Israeli General Moshe Yaalon, this author, and a host of other experts have insisted for more than three years.
Two former Iraqi generals corroborate Shaw's account as well. General Georges Sada, author of Saddam's Secrets and former second-in-command of the Iraqi air force, and General Ali Ibrahim Al-Tikriti, the notorious "Butcher of Basra", have separately confirmed that Iraq possessed significant chemical and biological weapons stockpiles, transported them across the Syrian border by truck and plane beginning in late 2002, and did so with Russian assistance.
Indeed, as John Loftus put it, “Every senior member of a Western, European, or Asian intelligence service whom I have ever met all agree that the Russians moved the last of the WMDs out of Iraq in the last few months before the war."
What was their motive? Saddam's Iraq was Russia's foremost Middle Eastern client state. Vladimir Putin could not afford to have the extent of Russia's dealings with Saddam -- arming, training, Oil-For-Food payoffs, etc. -- to be made public. He wanted to secure as many of Saddam's WMDs as possible. He also wanted to give America a black eye.
The Bush Administration was in no position to complain. Thinking it could race to Baghdad before the transfer was complete, it found itself holding the bag. Announcing the removal of WMDs to Syria would have required another invasion; outing the Russians could have started a new Cold War.
So the President kept his peace.
But this much remains: Syria, the world's foremost state sponsor of terrorism, cannot possibly be trusted with these weapons (indeed, the Palestinians claimed just this week to possess a new chemical weapons capability, supposedly created ex nihilo). Meanwhile, our media would rather push its domestic political agenda than report this very dangerous truth. And as with the New York Times' treasonous outing of the Terrorist Finance Tracking Program this week, the price to be paid in American lives and extinguished liberty is yet uncounted.
We have a problem in this country. It's a good thing we have a “new media”. Because the old one is fitting your daughter for her burqa.
* * *
ANTI-MISSILE DEFENSE SUCCESSES
VALIDATE BOEING DESIGN
(A program that was cancelled by Clinton, but revived by ... George W. Bush!)
Missile Defense Test Yields Successful "Hit to Kill" Intercept
Aerotech News & Review
The Missile Defense Agency and the Navy conducted a successful “hit to kill” missile defense test June 22 off the island of Kauai, Hawaii.
The test involved the launch of a Standard Missile 3 from the Aegis-class cruiser USS Shiloh to hit a “separating” target, meaning that the target warhead separated from its booster rocket, officials said.
“Hit to kill” technology uses direct collision of the interceptor missile with the target, destroying the target using only kinetic energy from the force of the collision.
It was the seventh successful intercept test involving the sea-based component of the nation’s ballistic missile defense system in eight attempts, Missile Defense Agency officials noted.
“We are continuing to see great success with the very challenging technology of hit-to-kill, a technology that is used for all of our missile defense ground and sea-based interceptor missiles,” said Air Force Lt. Gen. Henry “Trey” Obering, Missile Defense Agency director.
At about noon Hawaii time - 3 p.m., PDT - a target missile was launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Barking Sands on Kauai. USS Shiloh’s Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense 3.6 Weapon System detected and tracked the target and “developed a fire control solution,” officials said. About four minutes later, the USS Shiloh’s crew fired the SM-3, and two minutes later the missile intercepted the target warhead outside the Earth’s atmosphere, more than 100 miles above the Pacific Ocean and 250 miles northwest of Kauai.
This was the USS Shiloh’s first missile defense test since completing modifications and upgrades to its SPY-1 radar and advanced communications system to make it capable of serving as a sea-based missile defense platform. It was also the first time the new weapon system configuration and a new missile configuration were used during the intercept mission.
Three Aegis destroyers also participated in the flight test. One Aegis destroyer, equipped with a modified version of the Aegis ballistic missile defense weapon system, linked with a land-based missile defense radar to evaluate the ability of the ship’s missile defense system to receive and use target data via the missile defense system’s command, control, battle management and communications architecture.
Two other Aegis destroyers stationed off Kauai, including one from the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, performed long-range surveillance and track exercises. This information can also be used to provide targeting information for other missile defense systems, including the ground-based long-range interceptor missiles now deployed in Alaska and California, to protect all 50 states from a limited ballistic missile attack, officials said. This event marked the first time an allied military unit participated in a U.S. Aegis missile defense intercept test.
Another U.S. Navy Aegis cruiser used the flight test to support development of a SPY-1B radar modified by the addition of a new signal processor, collecting performance data on its increased target detection and discrimination capabilities.
Raytheon’s Missile Systems business in Tucson, Ariz., is developing SM-3 and leads the integrated team effort, which includes Alliant Techsystems, Aerojet and Boeing.
“This test validates the SM-3 Block IA design and paves the way for us to ramp up production of this urgently needed capability,” said Edward Miyashiro, Raytheon Missile Systems vice president, Naval Weapon Systems.
“The system’s and team’s continued success is a testament to our focus on
Mission Assurance at every level.”
Boeing is responsible for the KW avionics, guidance and control hardware and software, as well as the ejection subsystem. In addition to SM-3 round integration, Raytheon provides the KW infrared seeker, the signal and image processor and the integrated KW software.
“This lethal intercept by the SM-3 KW is confirmation that the system is fully capable of its mission to defend our warfighters, homeland and allies against ballistic missile attacks,” said Debra Rub-Zenko, vice president of Boeing Integrated Missile Defense. “I am extremely proud of the dedication by the entire team in meeting our commitments to MDA and the Navy and in securing another layer of defense for our nation.”
* * *
U.S. activates its missile shield over N. Korea threat-- Washington Times
Ex-DIA analyst was 'spy for China' -- Bill Gertz
When Will NYT Reveal One of al Qaeda's Secret Programs?
-- Ann Coulter
* * *
JU\NE 23, 2006
Politicizing Iraq's Successful Liberation: Why, I'm Shocked!
by Sam Wells
No matter what Bush does, he can never win with the Democrat politicians or the mainstream media -- or Al Qaeda's own coalition forces working at the New York Times and the L.A. Times.
Hints of the Pentagon starting to send more troops home from Iraq later this year have triggered cries from the Democrat Left that the Bush Administration is politicizing this as a pre-election ploy -- even though the general plan has been in the works for some time.
There is a rotation of troops. Some go home and others are sent in to replace them. As the anti-Iraq terrorists lose and are waning in influence, and as the Iraqis stand up to take control of their security, U.S. and coalition allies are beginning to stand down. The process has already begun. An entire southern province -- the one closest to Kuwait -- is now being turned over completely to Iraqi management. Very soon no
U.S. or coalition troops will remain there.
This general process is taking place gradually all over Iraq. The mainstream establishment media -- such as NBC, ABC, CBS, Wash. Post, Time mag, New York Times, and the L.A. Times -- have been helping the Dems call for "withdrawal" (regardless of situation) even as phased troop reductions have already been planned over the next year or two. This phased reduction of combat brigades is conditional on how quickly the Iraqis can assume an increasing responsibility for the defense and security. There can be no hard and absolute dates or definite schedule for this process. To make up and publicly announce any definite schedule for withdrawal -- as Democrats and other "anti-war" zealots are demanding -- would be very poor military strategy and stupid folly since it would be a recipe for failure. The Left doesn't care; they just want Bush to fail (even though he cannot run for re-election).
Now that some significant troop withdrawals seem to be on the horizon, the same elements of the main stream media which have been demanding withdrawals is helping the Democrats in their catcalling against Bush by claiming the troop reductions are just "political" -- especially if the announcement of the beginning or acceleration of phased troop comes just prior to the elections later this year. The Dems and their media cheerleaders will appeal to cynicism by saying it is just a Bush political ploy. There is no doubt the war will be politicized by both Republicans and Democrats running in those election campaigns. But the Dems have shamelessly politicized the war as it became less popular as reflected in opinion polls.
As Rummy begins the gradual, phased reduction of troop levels over the next couple years, the media will say that Bush is politicizing the war! It is strictly a case of the pot calling the kettle black. The American people are immersed in a constant barrage of propaganda. The old establishment media are part of the problem. One should never lose sight of that.
* * *
2003 UN Report: Iraq Sulfur Mustard Gas Chemical Weapons Have High Quality After 12 years of Storage
Posted on FreeRepublic.com 06/22/2006 11:38:34 AM PDT by jveritas
Since the story broke yesterday about finding 500 shells of chemical weapons in Iraq, shells that contain sulfur mustard gas or sarin gas, the Left and their media were quick to dismiss this extremely important find by using the lame excuse that these chemical weapons shells were produced before 1991 and hence not effective anymore because of their assumed much lower quality. However in the March 2003 UN report about Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction, there is the following on page 77 (Page 79 of the pdf file), paragraph 1 of the report http://www.un.org/Depts/unmovic/documents/6mar.pdf :
“The sulfur mustard contained in artillery shells that had been stored for over 12 years had been found by UNMOVIC to be still of high purity. It is possible that viable mustard-filled artillery shells and aerial bombs still remain in Iraq."
The above form the United Nations inspectors, and the darling of the Left Hans Blix, totally destroys the stupid lies that the Left and their media have been spewing since the breaking news of yesterday.
First the UN clearly stated in March 2003 that the mustard gas shells they found are of HIGH QUALITY even if they had been STORED FOR OVER 12 YEARS.
Second the UN admitted that they may still be VIABLE i.e. EFFECTIVE mustrad-filled artillery shells hidden in Iraq, and yesterday we learned for a fact that there were indeed 500 mustard gas artillery shells that were found in Iraq since the removal of Saddam. Also it is safe to conclude that the Mustard Gas shells found after the war are still in a high quality state and highly effective chemical weapons.
Another very important fact to add is that Saddam had LIED to the UN inspectors and the world when he said that he had destroyed ALL his chemical weapons and other WMD. It does not matter whether these weapons were produced before or after 1991, his job was to destroy it ALL and not hide anything, not one ounce of these WMD. He DID NOT.
* * *
Still More of Saddam's WMDs Missed by Blix & the UNinspectors -- Fox News
Seized Al Qaeda Docs Show Insurgency Losing Ground -- AP
* * *
Condi: I Hope She's Not Serious!
The U.S. State Department under Condi Rice has apparently offered the militant regime in Iran an "incentive" to discontinue its nuke program by offering nuclear development aid. This sounds very much like the deal that ex-President Jimmy Carter and Meddling Albright made with the crazy commies of North Korea during the Klinton administration, which, predictably, did not work very well. Appeasement never does in the long run.
I am hoping that Rice is not serious and that this is just some kind of gimmick to buy time or something. It doesn't make sense even as appeasement when you consider that the guy now heading up the regime in Iran believes sincerely that the end of the world as we know it is just around the corner in the next year or two and that the coming of his prophesied messiah will require first that Israel be wiped off the map and all the Christians in America be exterminated.
Providing nuclear aid, even for "peaceful" purposes, to someone with that mindset would only be seen as weakness and proof that the "prophesy" is about to come to pass. As usual, those who believe in "biblical prophesy" often try to make their interpretations of it come to pass -- a self-fulfilling prophesy machine -- so the coming of their messiah will be fulfilled in their lifetimes. This is another reason why religious fanaticism in that region is so dangerous. Rice's overtures to Iran seem to be based on a false set of assumptions about that regime's alleged desire for peace.
Judge Overturns Controversial SF Hand Gun Ban
SAN FRANCICSO -- A state trial judge sided Monday with the National Rifle Association in overturning a voter-approved city ordinance that banned handgun possession and firearm sales in San Francisco.
Measure H was placed on the November ballot by the San Francisco County Board of Supervisors, who were frustrated by an alarmingly high number of gun-related homicides in the city of 750,000. The NRA sued a day after 58 percent of voters approved the law.
In siding with the gun owners, San Francisco County Superior Court Judge James Warren said a local government cannot ban weapons because the California Legislature allows their sale and possession.
"My clients are thrilled that the court recognized that law-abiding firearms owners who choose to own a gun to defend themselves or their families are part of the solution and not part of the problem," NRA attorney Chuck Michel said. "Hopefully, the city will recognize that gun owners can contribute to the effort to fight the criminal misuse of firearms, a goal that we all share."
The ordinance targeted only city residents, meaning nonresidents in the city or even tourists were not banned from possessing or selling guns here.
Warren's decision was not unexpected. In 1982, a California appeals court nullified an almost identical San Francisco gun ban largely on grounds that the city cannot enact an ordinance that conflicts with state law.
But years later, in 1998, a state appeals court upheld West Hollywood's ban on the sale of so-called Saturday night specials, small and cheap handguns that city leaders said contributed to violent crime. And three years ago, the California Supreme Court ruled in favor of Los Angeles and Alameda counties, saying local governments could ban the possession and sale of weapons on government property, such as fairgrounds.
That decision, however, did not address the issue of private property sales and possession, as outlined in the San Francisco law.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit also is considering a challenge to a similar handgun ban in the District of Columbia that alleges the law violates a Second Amendment right of individuals to bear arms.
The NRA lawsuit here avoided those allegations.
Matt Dorsey, a spokesman for City Attorney Dennis Herrera, whose office unsuccessfully defended the law before Warren, said the city was mulling whether it was going to appeal.
"We're disappointed that the court has denied the right of voters to enact a reasonable, narrowly tailored restriction on handgun possession," Dorsey said. "San Francisco voters spoke loud and clear on the issue of gun violence."
In November, San Francisco recorded its 90th homicide, up two from the previous year.
The case is Fiscal v. San Francisco 05-505960.
Copyright 2006 by FOXReno.com. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Zarqawi Dead: Top Al Qaeda Terrorist Killed by U.S. Bombing Raid
Al Qaeda is in disarray, demoralized at news. They will attempt to make him into a martyr for their bloody jihadist cause, but even they know this is a major blow against their campaign of death and disruption.
Destroyed Safehouse Yields Gold Mine of Intel on Terrorists
This new information has already resulted in the capture of at least 25 more Al Qaeda terrorists, making Iraq that much safer than it was before.
The Pro-Dem MSM News Spinners Downplay Zarqawi's Death -- David Limbaugh
Secret Bilderberg Conference Meets This Weekend in Ottawa -- AFP
The global elitists will discuss and plan the future of the world.
Beware the "Internet neutrality" Coalition -- NewsMax
Happy Birthday to Libertarian Party Cofounder and Elder Statesman John Hospers, the LP's First Presidential Candidate! And may he have many more..
Web Users to Help Monitor US Border -- BBC
Not only will vigilant web users be able to spot and report on intruders as they are crossing over, but rumor has it that pressing F3 on their keyboards will fire a laser beam (set on stun) directed against the would-be gatecrashers. ZAP! (Well, OK, not really, but we do have the technology, and it sounds like fun . . . . ) : -)
National Guard Sent to Assist Border Patrol -- Associated Press
High-Tech UAVs to Patrol Europe's Borders -- The (UK) Independent
Left-wing double standard: Why is it OK for Europeans to protect their borders but not "politically correct" for Americans to do the same?
RCMP Foils Major Terrorist Bombing Plot in Canada -- The Globe and Mail
We salute the RCMP! Hooray for "Canadian Global Imperialism"!
U.S. Troops Cleared in Iraqi Raid Probe -- AP & NewsMax
Iranian Fanatics Mouthing Off Again -- BBC
Iran's Ayatollah Ali Khamenei delivers a speech Sunday on the 17th
anniversary of the death of the late "revolutionary" founder Ayatollah Khomeini.
Army Corps of Engineers Accepts Blame for Levee Failure in New Orleans Flooding -- New York Times
You mean Bush didn't blow up the levees after all?
Bush Troubled By Report of Iraq Killings
Of course, the Hate-America partisans will make the most of these rumored atrocities
Red Chinese Military Expansionism -- Charles R. Smith
Preserving A Vision (Part III) -- Thomas Sowell.
Preserving A Vision (Part II) -- Thomas Sowell.
Preserving A Vision (Part I) -- Thomas Sowell.
* * *
We Will Stand Firm with Iraq -- Speech by Prime Minister Tony Blair
"Let's not disenfranchise Iraqi people." -- Blair Interview with Al Jazeera
"You may not agree with the original decision, you may believe mistakes have been made, you may even think how can it be worth the sacrifice, but surely we must all accept this is a genuine attempt to run the race of liberty." ~Prime Minister Tony Blair
* * *
Some Interesting Figures
on the Gatecrashers Among US
1. 40% of all workers in L.A. County (L.A. County has 10 million people) are working for cash and not paying taxes. This was because they are predominantly illegal immigrants, working without a green card.
2. 95% of warrants for murder in Los Angeles are for illegal aliens.
3. 75% of people on the most wanted list in Los Angeles are illegal aliens.
4. Over 2/3's of all births in Los Angeles County are to illegal alien Mexicans on Medi-Cal whose births were paid for by taxpayers.
5. Nearly 25% of all inmates in California detention centers are Mexican nationals here illegally.
6. Over 300,000 illegal aliens in Los Angeles County are living in garages.
7. The FBI reports half of all gang members in Los Angeles are most likely illegal aliens from south of the border.
8. Nearly 60% of all occupants of HUD properties are illegal.
9. 21 radio stations in L.A. are Spanish speaking.
10. In L.A.County 5.1 million people speak English. 3.9 million speak Spanish (10.2 million people in L.A.County).
(All 10 from the Los Angeles Times)
Less than 2% of illegal aliens are picking our crops but 29% are on welfare.
Over 70% of the United States annual population growth (and over 90% of California, Florida, and New York) results from immigration.
The cost of immigration to the American taxpayer in 1997 was a NET (after subtracting taxes immigrants pay) $70 BILLION a year, [Professor Donald Huddle, Rice University].
The lifetime fiscal impact (taxes paid minus services used) for the average adult Mexican immigrant is a NEGATIVE.
29% of inmates in federal prisons are illegal aliens.
Source: Los Angeles Times.
They Say "TO OPEN OUR HEARTS".... AND WHAT ELSE... TO THIS KIND OF STUFF?...... Our legal Immigrants came here for a better life and not a handout....what's happening is called an invasion not immigration!!
* * *
Iranian President Sends Letter to President Bush -- NY Times
Text of Ahmadinejad Letter to Bush -- Filled with Democrat Left-Wing Talking Points -- Wash. Post
Another example of how Democrat anti-Bush hate speech and "anti-war" propaganda is used against us by our enemies.
Legally Speaking, Rush Won
James Hirsen, NewsMax
Despite the mainstream media's best efforts to portray the deal struck between Florida prosecutors and Rush Limbaugh in the most negative light, the fact is it was a huge victory for the mega-talk show host.
Back in 2003, a Ronnie Earle wannabe prosecutor frittered away Florida taxpayers' dollars by engaging in a politically motivated investigation, which involved alleged "doctor shopping" by Limbaugh.
The left immediately began salivating over the prospect of convicting the conservative icon for a felony that carried with it a possible 5-year prison sentence.
Unlike a plea bargain, in this legal arrangement Limbaugh did not have to alter the position he has consistently maintained: He did not have to admit to having committed a crime.
Typically, a plea bargain involves admitting to a lesser charge. But pursuant to this settlement, Limbaugh filed a not guilty plea with the court.
The plea affirms what Limbaugh has always said -- that there was no doctor shopping.
Limbaugh was required to pay a small fine. He had to participate in a theatrical walk-in booking. And, as a condition to the prosecutors dropping the case 18 months from now, he must continue with his treatment under the same physician that he has been seeing for the last two and a half years, something he planned on doing anyway.
Limbaugh's attorney, Roy Black, did an exceptional job for his client by avoiding the risk of a trial.
When the dust settles there will be no record of criminal prosecution, no guilty plea, no probation, no community service, no further obligation of any kind. This is an unqualified win for Limbaugh.
In order to allow the district attorney to save face, Limbaugh agreed to allow himself to be booked. In addition, he posed for a Tom DeLay-style happy mug shot and was subsequently released, a small price to pay for the certainty and finality of the settlement.
It is not unusual for prosecutors to make a deal of this kind when the potential defendant is a first-time offender with no prior criminal record.
What is unusual is that it took so long.
After three grueling years, Rush can put the whole sorry saga behind him and turn his full attention toward doing what he does best.
James Hirsen is an attorney. He writes NewsMax's Left Coast Report
* * *
Washington Post, Media Slant Limbaugh Plea
Rush Limbaugh's "not guilty" plea deal on doctor shopping charges and his deal with Palm Beach County prosecutors, which will end the case in his favor, was distorted by the Washington Post's report Saturday.
Writing in the Media Research Center's News Busters blog, Tim Graham charged that the Post "showed its liberal colors" when it reported, "Rush Limbaugh Arrested: The talk radio icon surrenders on a charge of committing fraud to obtain prescription drugs."
The "arrested" headline was first used by MSNBC news Friday evening - a theme that was picked up by other outlets like the Post.
"The headline for the story on the front of the Style section was also suggestive: 'Rush Limbaugh Turns Himself In On Fraud Charge In Rx Drug Probe.' "
While noting that the online link was "Limbaugh Charged With Prescription Drug Fraud," Graham said it was "accurate but incomplete," arguing that it could mislead readers into believing that Limbaugh "was admitting guilt, with words like 'surrenders' and 'turns himself in'" despite the fact that it a part of a deal with no admission of guilt.
Graham added that the story written by the Post's Peter Whoriskey claimed, "The agreement is not an admission of guilt to the charge," without explaining that Limbaugh had pleaded not guilty. Wrote Graham, "A less inflammatory set of headlines would have said 'Prosecutors, Limbaugh Strike Deal.'
Whoriskey, Graham charged, "underlined hypocrisy in his story, saying the drug probe 'has hovered over the law-and-order conservative,' " and later "without noting Limbaugh's critics are on the left in any way: 'The news that Limbaugh, a savage critics [sic] of others' moral behavior, was addicted to drugs was taken as a sign of hypocrisy by his detractors.'"
As Newsmax has reported [Rush Limbaugh Prescription Drug Case Settled], Limbaugh's lawyer Roy Black explained that the single charge of doctor shopping filed by the State Attorney is being held in abeyance under the terms of an agreement between the State and Mr. Limbaugh.
According to Black the formal agreement between Limbaugh and the State Attorney comprises conditions that Rush will continue in treatment with the doctor he has seen for the past two and one half years, that after he completes an additional 18 months of treatment, the State Attorney has agreed to drop the charge, and that he has agreed to make a $30,000 payment to the State of Florida to defray the public cost of the investigation.
* * *
Settlement Reached between Limbaugh and Prosecutor
Visiting Chinese President Hu Heckled by Protester
Heckler disrupts Chinese President Hu’s speech on south lawn at White House: ‘President Bush, stop him from killing’... ‘Stop persecuting the Falun Gong,’ she yelled… She also shouted in Chinese, ‘President Hu, your days are numbered!’... The woman is taken away by uniformed secret service officers… right after Bush urged Hu to allow Chinese to ‘speak freely’...
Minutemen Leader to Bush: Build Fence or We Will
Middle Class Flight Accelerates from Urban Areas, especially from New York City and L.A.
People are leaving for cheaper homes and better neighborhoods.
Gasoline Prices in Beverly Hills Reach New Highs Today
The price of full service high octane gas reaches $4.049 dollars per gallon Thursday, April 20, 2006, at a gas station in Beverly Hills, Calif.
How FedGov Spends Your Tax Money
The Top 10 Noam Chomsky Lies about Communism, Modern History, the Cold War, the War on Terrorism, etc.-- Paul Bogdanor
It's A Major Mistake -- State Rep. Tom McClintock
One of the few principled statesmen in California warns against attempts by liberals in the California state legislature to eliminate crucial entry-level jobs for poor people and young workers.
Racism 101 at Duke -- The American Thinker
OK City Bombing Researcher Disappointed with Congressman's Witness List for Hearings -- World Net Daily
Remember April 19th
Immigration vs. Gate Crashing -- Walter Williams
Wowie Zahawie: Sorry everyone, but Iraq did go uranium shopping in Niger- Christopher Hitchens
AMERICA WINS! MCCAIN-KENNEDY
(at least for the time being)
Tancredo Hails Demise of Senate 'Amnesty' Deal-- NewsMax.com
Newt Gingrich: Senate Immigration Proposal a 'Cave-In' -- NewsMax.com
Border Fence at San Diego Has Huge Success. - NPR
Apprehensions down 95% after authorities make crossing more difficult
"Democrats Ripe for Political Embarrassment, But Gutless GOP Would Rather Pander" -- Rush Limbaugh
China Prepares for World Domination -- Lev Navrozov
White House Does Not Dispute Bush "Leak" Allegation -- Reuters
According to Bush spokesman, nothing in the released and already declassified parts of that National Intelligence Estimate about Iraq could compromise the nation's security and the President had full authority to release that information.
Iranian Missiles Are Now Capable of Carrying Nukes - WorldNetDaily.con
New Evidence Says Saddam Ordered Suicide Attacks Against U.S. Targets Prior to 9/11/01 -- Carl Limbacher
Hollywood Kook Laurie David Wants Us To Unplug Our Toasters to Save the Planet! -- EIB
As she flies around in a G5 jet... this wealthy leftist is so out of touch with regular Americans as well as bereft of common sense.
Gore Urges Moral Crusade Against Global Warming -- Bay Area News
It is scary that millions of people voted for this guy for President in 2000. What a buffoon!
WHO WILL PROTECT US FROM OUR PROTECTORS?
Homeland Security Press Aide Held, Charged with Sexual Predation -- AP
Patriot Act Used to Enforce Copyright Law -- Slashdot
It seems the USA Patriot Act has been used in an alleged copyright infringement case involving a Stargate SG1 website. And it has also been used to nab a Vegas strip-club owner for corruption in 2003, and to go after kiddie porn traffickers. While I am glad the sleazy types were arrested, what do these cases have to do with fighting terrorism? ~Editor Eddie
Associated Press Incorrectly Reports Patriot Act - Mayfield link
In a March 29 story about Brandon Mayfield, The Associated Press reported erroneously that the Justice Department acknowledged in a letter that it used the USA Patriot Act to investigate whether he was linked to 2004 train bombings in Spain. . . .
But "No rights have been violated" insists Rep.Sensenbrenner
Let's hope he's right, but eternal vigilance is still the price of liberty....
Rush Limbaugh Interviews Tom DeLay on His Decision
Answering 13 Frequently Asked Questions About Illegal Immigration
The 1965 Immigration Act: Anatomy of a Disaster -- Ben Johnson
Guests or gate crashers? Part II -- Thomas Sowell
Human Smuggling: 22 Chinese Arrive In Cargo ContainerI
illegals sneak in through a port NOT run by Dubai!
Smart Talk and Girly Talk on the Campaign Trail -- Richard Morin
DeLay Announces Resignation From House -- AP
Liberals are gleeful, but DeLay will still be a potent factor for the Right, especially when he is eventually exonerated of the trumped-up charges against him in the frivolous, politically motivated indictment..
Tom DeLay Tells Why He's Quitting -- Time Magazine
Interview with Mike Allen
500,000 Rally in Downtown
to Protest Sensenbrenner Proposal
and Express Solidarity with Illegal Aliens
Pretty intimidating! Is it too late for L.A. to reverse this mess? Is it too late for California to turn this around? Huh? This dwarfs any current anti-war demonstration.
Size of L.A. March Surprises Authorities -- Peter Prengaman
Rep. Tom Tancredo on Illegals: Answering to Bill O’Reilly’s claim of, “If we build a wall, illegal aliens will dig a tunnel and come across,” Tancredo answered, “The wall IS WORKING in San Diego, and people are happy about it.”
Tancredo added, "To say that we don’t have the right as a nation to secure our borders, or that it’s immoral to secure our borders, is idiotic."
Anti-Illegal Immigration Protest Erupts in Fighting, Targeted by Counter Demonstrators -- NWITimesOnline.com
Scotland Yard Catches "Terrorist 007" Hacker -- Wash. Post
Airborne Laser Weapon Ready for Testing -- MSNBC
U.S. Hiring Hong
Kong Firm to Scan for Nukes
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON -- In the aftermath of the Dubai ports dispute, the Bush administration is hiring a Hong Kong conglomerate to help detect nuclear materials inside cargo passing through the Bahamas to the United States and elsewhere.
The administration acknowledges the no-bid contract with Hutchison Whampoa Ltd. represents the first time a foreign company will be involved in running a sophisticated U.S. radiation detector at an overseas port without American customs agents present.
Freeport in the Bahamas is 65 miles from the U.S. coast, where cargo would be likely to be inspected again. The contract is currently being finalized.
The administration is negotiating a second no-bid contract for a Philippine company to install radiation detectors in its home country, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press. At dozens of other overseas ports, foreign governments are primarily responsible for scanning cargo.
While President Bush recently reassured Congress that foreigners would not manage security at U.S. ports, the Hutchison deal in the Bahamas illustrates how the administration is relying on foreign companies at overseas ports to safeguard cargo headed to the United States.
Hutchison Whampoa is the world's largest ports operator and among the industry's most-respected companies. It was an early adopter of U.S. anti-terror measures. But its billionaire chairman, Li Ka-Shing, also has substantial business ties to China's government that have raised U.S. concerns over the years.
Three years ago, the Bush administration effectively blocked a Hutchison subsidiary from buying part of a bankrupt U.S. telecommunications company, Global Crossing Ltd., on national security grounds.
And a U.S. military intelligence report, once marked "secret," cited Hutchison in 1999 as a potential risk for smuggling arms and other prohibited materials into the United States from the Bahamas.
Hutchison's port operations in the Bahamas and Panama "could provide a conduit for illegal shipments of technology or prohibited items from the West to the PRC (People's Republic of China), or facilitate the movement of arms and other prohibited items into the Americas," the now-declassified assessment said.
The CIA currently has no security concerns about Hutchison's port operations, and the administration believes the pending deal with the foreign company would be safe, officials said.
Supervised by Bahamian customs officials, Hutchison employees will drive the towering, truck-like radiation scanner that moves slowly over large cargo containers and scans them for radiation that might be emitted by plutonium or a radiological weapon.
Any positive reading would set off alarms monitored simultaneously by Bahamian customs inspectors at Freeport and by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials working at an anti-terrorism center 800 miles away in northern Virginia. Any alarm would prompt a closer inspection of the cargo, and there are multiple layers of security to prevent tampering, officials said.
"The equipment operates itself," said Bryan Wilkes, a spokesman for the U.S. National Nuclear Safety Administration, the agency negotiating the contract. "It's not going to be someone standing at the controls pressing buttons and flipping switches."
A lawmaker who helped lead the opposition to the Dubai ports deal isn't so confident. Neither are some security experts. They question whether the U.S. should pay a foreign company with ties to China to keep radioactive material out of the United States.
"Giving a no-bid contract to a foreign company to carry out the most sensitive security screening for radioactive materials at ports abroad raises many questions," said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y.
A low-paid employee with access to the screening equipment could frustrate international security by studying how the equipment works and which materials set off its alarms, warned a retired U.S. Customs investigator who specialized in smuggling cases.
"Money buys a lot of things," Robert Sheridan said. "The fact that foreign workers would have access to how the United States screens various containers for nuclear material and how this technology scrutinizes the containers - all those things allow someone with a nefarious intention to thwart the screening."
Other experts discounted concerns. They cited Hutchison's reputation as a leading ports company and said the United States inevitably must rely for some security on large commercial operators in the global maritime industry.
"We must not allow an unwarranted fear of foreign ownership or involvement in offshore operations to impair our ability to protect against nuclear weapons being smuggled into this country," said Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., a member of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. "We must work with these foreign companies."
A former Coast Guard commander, Stephen Flynn, said foreign companies sometimes prove more trustworthy - and susceptible to U.S. influence - than governments.
"It's a very fragile system," Flynn said. Foreign companies "recognize the U.S. has the capacity and willingness to exercise a kill switch if something goes wrong."
A spokesman for Hutchison's ports subsidiary, Anthony Tam, said the company "is a strong supporter in port security initiatives."
"In the case of the Bahamas, our local personnel are working alongside with U.S. customs officials to identify and inspect U.S.-bound containers that could be carrying radioactive materials," Tam said.
However, there are no U.S. customs agents checking any cargo containers at the Hutchison port in Freeport. Under the contract, no U.S. officials would be stationed permanently in the Bahamas with the radiation scanner.
The administration is finalizing the contract amid a national debate over maritime security sparked by the furor over now-abandoned plans by Dubai-owned DP World to take over significant operations at major U.S. ports.
Hutchison operates the sprawling Freeport Container Port on Grand Bahama Island. Its subsidiary, Hutchison Port Holdings, has operations in more than 20 countries but none in the United States.
Contract documents, obtained by The Associated Press, indicate Hutchison will be paid roughly $6 million. The contract is for one year with options for three years.
The Energy Department's National Nuclear Safety Administration is negotiating the Bahamas contract under a $121 million security program it calls the "second line of defense." Wilkes, the NNSA spokesman, said the Bahamian government dictated that the U.S. give the contract to Hutchison.
"It's their country, their port. The driver of the mobile carrier is the contractor selected by their government. We had no say or no choice," he said. "We are fortunate to have allies who are signing these agreements with us."
Some security experts said that is a weak explanation in the Bahamas, with its close reliance on the United States. The administration could insist that the Bahamas permit U.S. Customs agents to operate at the port, said Albert Santoli, an expert on national security issues in Asia and the Pacific.
"Why would they not accept that?" said Santoli, a former national security aide to Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif. "There is an interest in the Bahamas and every other country in the region to make sure the U.S. stays safe and strong. That's how this should be negotiated."
Flynn, the former Coast Guard commander, agreed the Bahamas would readily accept such a proposal but said the U.S. is short of trained customs agents to send overseas.
Contract documents obtained by the AP show at least one other foreign company is involved in the U.S. radiation-detection program.
A separate, no-bid $4 million contract the Bush administration is negotiating would pay a Manila-based company, International Container Terminal Services Inc., to install radiation detectors at the Philippines' largest port.
The U.S. says the Manila company is not being paid to operate the radiation monitors once they are installed. But two International Container executives and a senior official at the government's Philippine Nuclear Research Institute said the company will run the detectors on behalf of the institute and the country's customs bureau. U.S. officials said they will investigate further how the Filipinos plan to use the equipment.
© 2006 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
The upcoming visit by Chinese President Hu Jintao has sparked a "forgive and forget" attitude not seen before inside the White House and halls of Congress. Accordingly, the Bush administration quietly announced its first concession to China, to celebrate the visit.
The quiet publication of a waiver in the Federal Register notes that China will not be held responsible for its continued proliferation of weapons. These weapons include sales of advanced Chinese cruise missile and ballistic missile technology to the mullahs of Iran.
The move by the Bush administration removes the required punishment against Beijing. The communist leaders in Beijing have promised on a monthly basis since 1990 to stop selling nuclear, chemical and missile technology to rabid world leaders hell bent on starting World War III. For some unexplained reason, George Bush now believes them.
The economic reality for the waiver of sanctions against the Chinese warlords is that America can continue to sell Boeing jet liners to Beijing. This does have a positive effect in the aerospace industry but goes against the law.
China has already demonstrated that it can convert these civilian airliners into military planes without fear of sanctions – whether law requires the punishment or not.
The Chinese People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) has already converted a used Boeing 737 into a flying military command post for the warlords to use in case of battle.
The conversion of a U.S. airliner is a direct and flagrant violation of export law. The required action is to demand the plane be dismantled and returned to its civilian status or face sanctions.
The reality is that any ban on selling U.S. Boeing airliners to Beijing will mean a horde of French salesmen will descend on China faster than you can say champagne lunch. The general perception is that to ban U.S. airliner sales to Beijing will result in a great windfall profit for Paris because the Airbus consortium will sell jets without question to the warlords in the People's Liberation Army (PLA).
Of course, a "manly" President could relay to Paris that any attempt to take advantage of a U.S. ban against Beijing would result in similar sanctions against French jet sales here in America.
3,000 Chinese Army Companies Inside America
Yet this example is just a minor tiff in comparison to other issues with Chinese policy that the White House wishes would simply go away. The recent flap over the Dubai Ports company is a tempest in a teapot in comparison to the some 3,000 Chinese army companies operating inside the U.S.
The Dubai Ports company has no documented links to terrorism, crime or violations of U.S. national security. The same cannot be said of the thousands of PLA-owned companies operating here inside the U.S.
These Chinese army-owned firms engage in a wide range of criminal activities including espionage, theft, illegal exports, extortion, tax evasion, computer hacking and even violence. Many of the firms participate in illegal arms sales, and several have been caught trying to sell weapons to terrorists.
Other PLA-owned firms spy on America and export military technology back to the Chinese army. One such firm recently cited by the Commerce Department exported a special metals-processing furnace directly to a PLA-owned company in China. The resulting prosecution and sanctions applied to that single firm.
Thus, the Bush administration is plinking at each Chinese army firm that it finds in violation – one at a time – instead of attacking the root problem to begin with – the Chinese leadership.
I am not the only one who is aware of this vast army of spies, terrorists, thieves and criminals operating inside America. The FBI has repeatedly cited a growing number of Chinese army companies inside the U.S. operating as conduits for espionage and illegal activities. These firms – ALL OF THEM – need to be shut down.
At the very least, according to federal law, the Bush administration should be publishing a list of the known PLA-owned firms each year. Instead, just as the Clinton administration did before George Bush, the current White House ignores the law and refuses to release the list of known offenders.
The solution is to confront the Chinese leadership and inform them that this activity will no longer be tolerated. The policy needs to be backed up by the teeth of real sanctions that reach into the bank accounts of the warlords inside Beijing and penalize them heavily.
Red Money Laundering
In addition, China has engaged in a financial war against America with its freely operating banking system that allowed North Korea to launder hundreds of millions of dollars in counterfeit currency. The effort to siphon fake $100 bills into America was led by the Bank of China (BOC), a financial entity controlled by the communist government.
Bank of China is currently seeking U.S. financing and wants to be added to our stock market. Its biggest financial supporters – the PLA, billionaire Li Ka-Shing and Goldman Sachs – back this effort.
Bank of China has also been filled with corruption, illegal loans and bad money. The Chinese government attempted to crack down on BOC operations with several high-profile cases, including one conviction for fraud that carried the death penalty.
The Bush administration has pulled its punches on the Chinese banks and money laundering. The Bush administration applied tough sanctions against North Korea for printing fake $100 bills. However, no such sanctions have been applied to any Chinese financial institution or entity for fear of angering the boys in Beijing.
Even Li Ka-Shing has acquired newfound pals inside the Bush administration. The Chinese billionaire was turned down by the Bush administration in his multibillion-dollar bid to take over the defunct communications firm Global Crossing. The reason for the denial was that Li and his companies posed a threat to U.S. national security.
Today, however, the Bush administration sees Mr. Li in a different light, under pressure from Beijing. Li now proudly owns a port security company that has won a no-bid, multimillion-dollar contract to run and operate sophisticated cargo inspection equipment designed to detect nuclear, biological and chemical weapons.
The inspections will take place using the new U.S.-made equipment at the Li Ka-Shing-owned ports in the Bahamas.
Don't worry that the CIA, DIA, Defense Department, Commerce Department, the Rand Corporation and the State Department document Mr. Li. as being directly linked to the Chinese military. Never mind the fact that the PLA provided the Taliban and its al-Qaida companions with most of their weaponry.
Don't lose any sleep over the fact that PLA is likely to inspect the new WMD detection equipment in detail and find out exactly how to defeat it. And we all know that the Chinese generals would never leap at the chance to earn a few million by selling the exact details on how to defeat our advanced technology to someone like Kim Jong Il of North Korea or Osama bin Laden.
All this leaves one to wonder who is in charge here ... George Bush or Hu Jintao? Clearly, Mr. Hu has more control over U.S. national security, unless the president would like to step up to the task of defending America from the Chinese warlords.
MARCH 21, 2006
Prospects of Terror: An Inquiry into Jihadi Alternatives -- J.R. Dunn, The American Thinker
This is the first part of a three-part series which reviews the strategies available to the jihadists in their Long War on Western Civilization -- and why the U.S. is winning that war so far.
Daytime TV Tied to Poorer Mental Scores in Elderly -- Reuters
Saddam’s Tapes, WMDs and the Osama Connection -- Jamie Glazov
Mexico Discovers Giant Oil Field in Gulf -- Jerome Corsi, Human Events
* * *
POINTS TO PONDER ON THE REACTION TO THE IRAQ WAR
Three Years On
The tragedy of the Iraq invasion is that there won't be another.
by Tim Hames
The (London) Times, March 20, 2006FOR SOME REASON, and for a number of years, I have been on the e-mail list for the Stop the War coalition. This is bizarre, though in fairness to them each newsletter explains how I could “unsubscribe” should I wish to. Having never subscribed in the first place, and finding these manic missives entertaining in a macabre sort of way, I have never removed myself from their records. After this column, they might do it for me.
Anyway, the latest call to (non) arms arrived last Thursday. It asked: “Where will you be on March 18?” The supermarket would be the truthful answer but not the one that was being solicited. Where they would have prefered me to be was Parliament Square for the demonstration marking the third anniversary of the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq.
The e-mail contained rhetoric that has become familiar, though fatuous. It railed against “lies about weapons of mass destruction”, an “illegal war”, “Abu Ghraib” and the “expropriation of Iraqi resources”. All the words so often employed about Iraq were there, except, of course, “Saddam” and “Hussein”. In any case, the entire episode started in March 2003 was condemned as an “occupation” that has “brought nothing to the Iraqi people except ever increasing death and destruction”.
I suppose it depends on how you define “nothing”. If two elections, one constitutional referendum, a free press, an independent judiciary, greater religious liberty, the lifting of economic sanctions, reintegration into the region and the wider international community count for “nothing”, then nothing is a reasonable assessment. As many leaders of the anti-war movement have nothing but contempt for “bourgeois democracy” and hate capitalism and its manifestations, then, for them, “nothing” is entirely accurate.
The rest of us, however, might reach a more rounded conclusion. When told that Iraq has been a “tragedy”, we might agree but not in the way that those who use that term take it. The tragedy is not that troops went into that land in 2003 but that they did not arrive earlier or in larger numbers. For the first tragedy of Iraq is that this is the third and not the seventh anniversary of its liberation. I am not one of those who thinks that it would have been possible for the US to have pressed on to Baghdad in 1991 after expelling Saddam’s conscripts from Kuwait. The older President Bush opted to take the “UN route” and was thus shackled by its limited mandate.
What should have happened, though, was a showdown in March 1999, four months after the Iraqi dictator expelled UN weapons inspectors. This was the umpteenth violation of the terms under which he had earlier sued for peace and more than enough justification to remove him from power, irrespective of whether France, Germany or Russia had scant enthusiasm for the venture. If America and Britain had acted then, life would have been considerably easier. Delay after that point meant that it could always be asked “why now?” by opponents of intervention. As it was, Bill Clinton, handcuffed by the manner in which he avoided the conflict in Vietnam and shamed by the exposure of his exploits with Monica Lewinsky, could no more launch an assault on Iraq than he might claim membership of the American Celibacy Association.
The second tragedy lies in the miscalculations made about weapons of mass destruction. It should be acknowledged that these mistakes did not rest with the CIA or MI6 alone; every leading intelligence agency believed that Saddam had or was close to securing a biological, chemical or nuclear capacity and that he was inclined to deploy it. We now know that the senior ranks of Iraq’s armed forces assumed that there was an advanced WMD programme and were astonished to discover on the eve of war that none was available.
The tragedy of what went wrong in Iraq, therefore, is that the failure to locate WMD has made action against Iran or North Korea far harder to advance to Western public opinion. This would have been true even if Iraq, post invasion, was now a land of peace and plenty.
The final tragedy is that while many will prosper within Iraq over the next three years, the price of inept peacetime policies between 2003 and 2005 is that there will be no more Iraqs in the foreseeable future. To that extent, the Stop the War coalition, assisted, ironically, by the Pentagon, will be satisfied.
And what does this mean in practice? It means no more sadistic totalitarian dictators removed from office. It means no more free and fair elections for those who have never had them. It means no more openings for civic and religious liberty. It means no more chances of a cultural reawakening. Democracy might well progress in parts of the Middle East but, alas, mostly in the states that were most benign to begin with. There is little reason to suppose that the ruling elites in Damascus, Tehran or Tripoli have the cause for fear that they must have briefly felt three years ago. Nor have the people under their yoke any reason for optimism that they might yet escape servitude.
It has become fashionable in certain American neo-conservative circles to declare that Iraq has been “lost” and to wash their hands of the enterprise. Personally, I have never been part of that fraternity. It seems to me that their logic is dubious. Iraq has not been “lost”, there is still a reasonable chance that by the actual seventh anniversary of the incursion the vast majority of people there will be more content than at any time in their history. It is the enslaved Middle East beyond Iraq that has been “lost” and thus remains an intense threat to our security. “What were you doing on March 18?” Lamenting what could and should but did not occur.
Spinning Operation Swarmer -- W. Thomas Smith, Jr.
"The latest criticism of the war in Iraq has become so politically manipulative, so disingenuous, so over-the-top; it is undermining a critical cause that we cannot afford to lose; and for a variety of global security reasons."
Twelve Voices Defend Freedom as Big Media Cowers - Diana West
Newly Released Document Ties Saddam to al-Qaida -- WorldNetDaily
Among the pre-war documents posted online yesterday by the Pentagon is a letter from a member of Saddam's intelligence apparatus indicating al-Qaida and the Taliban had a relationship with the regime prior to the 9-11 attacks. This further confirms previous evidence which has come out of Iraq over the past three years and proves Bush's critics were wrong when they said he lied about such connections.
Susan Sarandon to Play Cindy Sheehan in Movie... the propaganda war continues.
War Protests Attracting Smaller Crowds -- NewsMax.com
The Left Outfoxes Itself -- D.R. Tucker
Pentagon Official Warns of Chinese Military Buildup -- AP
Losing the Propaganda War -- Cliff Kincaid
* * *
Conservatives & Libertarians Horrified at Bush's Leftward Turn
-- especially in Runaway SpendingSpending Obscenities -- Cal Thomas
THE FAILED PATH OF "COMPASSIONATE CONSERVATISM"
Give us real conservatism instead! Laissez nous faire!
"[I]t would be nice for the president to acknowledge that the Medicare drug program that took effect [in January] was a huge mistake. Though the intent was to expand coverage, so far the program has caused many to lose the coverage they had, including some of the poorest and sickest seniors."- Michael Cannon of the Cato Institute
A good conservative is revolted at mega-government Republicans.
Another "Emergency" Spending Bill -- Congressman Ron Paul
House Conservatives Prepare Austere Alternative Budget -- Human Events
House conservatives propose to cut more than $650 billion over five years, balance the budget and drastically shrink three cabinet agencies. Not a bad start....
Conservatives' Budget Offers Hope -- Mike Franc, Human Events
Moderates pose biggest problem for GOP
Boehner Disappoints Conservatives on Spending Bill -- Robert B. Bluey, Human Events
The honeymoon is over, Mr. Leader
The War Tax That Never Went Away -- Ted Roberts
Bush is a Victim of America’s
Political Civil War
by Gerard Jackson
Monday 13 March 2006
The Bush presidency has revealed the enormous ideological rift that has been developing for more than forty years in America, and yet the vast majority of Americans are still not fully aware of it even though there has probably been nothing like it since the civil war.
On one side of the political gulf there are the fanatical win-at-all-costs Democrats whose vital ideological core does not believe in the legitimacy of the Republican Party just as abolitionists didn’t believe in the legitimacy of slavery and the Southern Democrats in the legitimacy of Lincoln’s presidency.
To these Democrats, the Gores, Hillarys, Reids, Jesse Jacksons, Streisands, etc., the Republicans are the equivalent of nineteenth century slave owners. The irony of which is completely lost on these fanatics considering that those slave owners were Democrats
These comments are not mere speculation. About six years ago Curtis Cans, head of the Center for the Study of the American Electorate, pointed out that political inspired hatred has been building up for some thirty years, blaming television for this phenomenon. But 1972 was the year that the radicals captured the Democratic Party. From that moment the Democrats’ ruthless urge win began to be transformed into a policy of political extermination.
These radicals brought with them the disease of the crusading spirit of intolerance. Firm in the righteousness of their cause (however incoherent at times), convinced that America was built on injustice, exploitation and oppression they have waged an unconditional war against the infidel, the barbarian conservative, the enemy of all that is good and just. That the Republican Party was formed on an anti-slavery platform is something these dangerous fanatics have tried to write out of history, just as they try to suppress anything that contradicts their Orwellian views
Much of the last century’s politics remind me of the religious wars of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries where the battleground was doctrine and the object the saving of souls. Heretics, on both sides, who refused to recant frequently met a fiery end at the stake. Although it is true that Martin Luther did not, unlike the lovely Mr. Alec Baldwin, did not favour putting to death those who disagreed with him.
But fanaticism has a price and that price is the abandonment of reason and tolerance. That is why some Dems feel free to accuse Bush of being evil and wanting to reintroduce slavery. We see the same thing in Hollywood where, for example, a huge Hollywood crowd gave a Streisand a rousing reception when she called on it to vote for Gore because he will stack the Supreme Court with ‘judges’ who will twist the Constitution to fit their ideological agenda. (So much for the separation of the powers)
According to this deep Hollywood thinker the 1999 election was “a war against bigotry, against discrimination of any kind, racial, religious or sexual orientation.” To her and the rest of “Hollywood’s celluloid intellectuals,” Republicans are the forces of Darkness while the Democrats are the forces of Light. This feeling is genuine, pervasive and dangerous and it is poisoning the whole of the body politic, eating away at civil political discourse.
How did these Democrats arrive at such a risible and contemptible view of conservatives, or anyone else who disagrees with them? Having convinced themselves that they alone are concerned with social justice and oppression, and only they care about the poor and the underprivileged it is but a short step to assume that anyone who questions their vision or so-called remedies must be stupid or malevolent.
Just as religious fanatics from centuries past could not tolerate the existence of those who questioned their theology and so could only ascribe to these critics a devilish malevolence, neither can our “new Democrats” tolerate any who challenge their sacred political doctrines.
Gerard Jackson is Brookes’ economics editor
THE CORRUPTING INFLUENCE OF THE "WAR ON DRUGS"
LA Cops Up for Home Robberies
03/03/2006 09:05 News24.com
Los Angeles - Nineteen people, many of them former police officers or with police connections, have been charged with staging home robberies in Southern California to steal drugs, money and weapons, say prosecutors on Thursday.
The defendants were charged with committing more than 20 robberies and burglaries between 1999 and 2001 while posing as police officers, arriving in squad cars and wearing Los Angeles police department badges.
Prosecutors said that they handcuffed, threatened and assaulted their victims and in one case hit a man with a stun gun. They said that after the raids didn't yield the anticipated drugs, they stole any items of value, sold them and split the profits.
Narcotics, weapons violations
The Los Angeles US attorney's office said six defendants were indicted by a federal grand jury this week and the other 13 had been charged for the past 18 months with civil rights, narcotics and weapons violations.
The leader of the group was named as former LAPD officer Ruben Palomares, who was arrested with another member of the gang in San Diego in 2001 on cocaine trafficking charges.
Six other defendants were police officers in Los Angeles and Long Beach, and several others had received police training. All the officers had already been fired or had been suspended.
Robbery crew 'stole 270kg marijuana'
LAPD chief William Bratton said: "The reality is, no police department is immune from bad cops. No good cop wants to work with a bad cop ... Today's announcement proves we are committed to getting rid of those who would tarnish the LAPD badge."
According to the indictments, the robbery crew stole 600 pounds (270kg) of marijuana in one burglary and in another nabbed television sets from a truck in suburban Los Angeles.
Prosecutors said that in one case, two men dressed as police officers robbed a man outside a store of $45 000 worth of pseudoephedrine pills, which were used to make methamphetamines.
US attorney Debra Yang said: "The depth of corruption and audacity among these law enforcement officers is nothing less than stunning."
* * *
Houston Suffering from "Compassion Fatigue"Crime is up. Schools are overcrowded. Hospitals are jammed. Houston welcomed a flood of hurricane evacuees with open arms. But now the city is suffering from a case of 'compassion fatigue.'
In cities stretching from Atlanta to San Antonio, good will has often given way to the crude reality of absorbing a traumatized and sometimes destitute population. In Baton Rouge, which added 100,000 people to a pre-Katrina population of 225,000, residents bemoan the loss of the city's small-town feel and worry that trailer-park settlements will become permanent fixtures of blight. In Dallas, the city housing authority began offering rent vouchers to some of its 20,000 evacuees, only to become quickly overwhelmed and fail to pay landlords, prompting a number of eviction notices.
But perhaps no city has been as convulsed as Houston, which took in the greatest number of survivors. As some see it, the city is suffering from "compassion fatigue." Public services are overwhelmed, city finances are strained and violent crime is on the rise. When city leaders in New Orleans made comments two weeks ago suggesting that they wanted only hardworking evacuees to return, some Houston city-council members erupted in protest—fearing that politicians in the Big Easy were trying to stick Houston with their undesirables.
Go here for full story: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11677333/site/newsweek/
* * *
OTHER NEWS & COMMENTARY
Bartlett: Bush is Another Nixon-- NewsMax
Iraq 'Civil War' a Media Myth, says Military Expert
Let's hope he's right.
THE REAL REASON HILLARY OPPOSES THE DUBAI PORT DEAL
Hillary Clinton, Chuck Schumer, and other Democrat politicians have jumped on the bandwagon opposing the Dubai port agreement, claiming now to be concerned about the possible national security implications -- but the real reason is because of pressure coming from the Longshoreman's Union, which opposes the deal because of fear -- rightly or wrongly -- that the new port administration might seek to modernize port facilities in a way that might jeopardize the posh jobs of some of the Longshoreman's members.
For all his disappointing failings in domestic policies, and except for the administration's blatant out-to-lunch attitude on the porous border issue, Bush believes he has already proved himself a staunch "hawk" on national security, so he feels confident that he has nothing to prove in that area now. He thinks people should trust him and his administration on this deal. The liberal Democrats, on the other hand, know they are weak on the issue of national security and are trying to compensate for that weakness by their current posturing against the Dubai port deal. But, despite their posturing, the Dems are not really concerned about national security. They receive major contributions from the unions, especially the Longshoreman's union.
Members of the infamous International Longshoremen's Association are often considered by some to be "blue-collar" Americans, even though they rake in exorbitant CEO-level salaries. The truth is the Longshoremens union is one of the most corrupt, far-left reactionary vested interest groups in this country. ILA President John Bowers has been charged with racketeering and named as an associate of the Gambino organized crime family. The International Longshoreman's Union amounts to a very well-paid gang of elite goons.
These politically privileged gangsters are an elitist special interest group with much more in common with the putrid academic cliques of the ivory towers than with mainstream American working men and women.
So, we don't feel at all uncomfortable being on the opposite side of an issue from the ILA or from Hoffa's Teamsters union, which is holding sympathy rallies against the port deal today. Democrat politicians like Hillary and Chuck Schumer -- who receive hefty campaign contributions from the Longshoreman's union and Teamsters -- are just doing the bidding of these union goons. As the New York Sun observed in an article day before yesterday detailing ILA corruption, "Mr. Bush's critics would have more credibility in the middle of this war [over the ports] if they hadn't been on the receiving end of lucre from a labor union with a history of corruption and mob ties."
FEBRUARY 21, 2006
High Court Allows Church's Hallucinogenic Tea -- MyWay News
A victory for religious freedom.
FEBRUARY 20, 2006
GOP Governors Question Port Turnover -- AP
A Harriet Miers Moment? -- Frank J. Gaffney Jr.
Senators Ready to Block Controversial Dubai Port Deal -- Reuters
Bush threatens to veto if passed!
Alec Baldwin's Loathsome Blog
by James Hirsen
Remember when Alec Baldwin promised to move out of the country if Bush were elected in 2000? Or when on national television in 1998 he advocated stoning Congressman Henry Hyde and his family to death?
Well now, in the midst of the war on terror, Baldwin has referred to the sitting vice president as a terrorist.
In a recent post on Arianna Huffington's Web site, Baldwin wrote, "[Dick] Cheney is a terrorist. He terrorizes our enemies abroad and innocent citizens here at home indiscriminately."
After musing about whether a civil suit will arise out of the now over-reported hunting accident, Baldwin added, "Finally, someone who might get that lying, thieving Cheney into a courtroom to answer some direct questions."
The Left Coast Report acknowledges that the guy is a gifted actor but wonders if he's really auditioning for Howard Dean's gig.
Tape Confirms Saddam's WMD Plans in 1995
A recently discovered tape of a 1995 discussion between Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein and his advisors reveals that Saddam was reconstituting his WMD programs and was hiding his nuclear development program from UN inspectors.
Media Ignore Saddam's Uranium Bombshell -- NewsMax
Ex-Official: Russia Moved Saddam's WMDs -- Kenneth R. Timmerman
Saddam Caught on Tape Talking about WMDs -- CNN
Tapes Reveal Saddam Hid Uranium Enrichment & Bomb Program from Inspectors
OTHER ITEMS OF NEWS & REACTION
Red Chinese Robot Bomber -- Charles R. Smith
* * *
European Mohammed Cartoons
U.S. State Dept. Sends Weak Response to Islamic Ire at Danish Cartoon, Chastises Newspapers for Carrying Satirical Drawings!
Sick of Sausage by Dan Henninger
The war for liberty is, at root, one over ideology (ideas and principles), not unworkable pragmatic gimmicks and short-term expediency.
Rep. Boehner Elected to Clean House -- NewsMax.com
Bill Clinton Praised by Iran and Islamic Arabs -- NewsMax.com
It's because Slick wants us to recognize Hamas.
Iran Conducts Secret Rocket Tests -- The Weekend Australian
Gen. Pace: We'll Defeat N. Korean Aggression If It Comes -- AP
REACTION TO SOTU
SOTU 2006: THE REMINDER SPEECH
by Chuck Muth
from Muth's Truths
If nothing else, this year's State of the Union speech, known inside the beltway as SOTU, served as a reminder to many conservatives why they are so darned displeased with much of President Bush's domestic agenda, but also why they had absolutely no choice but assure his re-election over Sen. John F. Kerry in 2004.
Fear is a powerful motivator. And unhappy conservatives in 2004 harbored a double-dose it as they trudged to the ballot box. Fear that John Kerry would be in charge of the war on terrorists. And fear that John Kerry would get to appoint Supreme Court justices. Their fears were well-founded and their decision was affirmed in President Bush's speech Tuesday night.
First, the easy part: SCOTUS. Which is Washington-speak for Supreme Court of the United States. The nation's two newest justices were featured and highlighted during the speech. Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito are clearly superior, well-qualified selections who will not be inclined to "legislate from the bench."
Had John Kerry been elected president in 2004, nothing close to these intellectual and philosophical judges would have been allowed within 200 miles of Democrat's short-list. We need no other evidence of this than the fact that John Kerry declared a filibuster on Sam Alito - from, as a White House spokesman noted with tongue planted firmly in cheek, a five-star ski resort in Switzerland. Because of George W's re-election, the Supreme Court has now decidedly moved a large step in the "right" direction. That alone was probably worth the vote in 2004.
But more importantly, there's the war on terrorists. After 9-11, there was a very real danger that the American public, absent any immediate or further attacks, would be lulled back into a sense of complacency about terrorism. And it has. Fortunately, the president and his administration have NOT. It would be very easy for George Bush, faced with both public apathy and public opposition, to "go wobbly" on the war on terrorists. To his great credit, he hasn't. And he doesn't apologize for it either. That's the primary reason conservatives sucked it up and cast their ballot for him in 2004. And it was the right decision.
Can you just imagine John Kerry saying the following things in his State of the Union address had he been elected POTUS, which is Washington-speak for President of the United States?
"If we were to leave these vicious attackers alone, they would not leave us alone."
"There is no peace in retreat. And there is no honor in retreat."
"Fellow citizens, we are in this fight to win, and we are winning."
"The road to victory is the road that will take our troops home."
"(Decision to) decrease our troop levels (in Iraq)...will be made by our military commanders, not by politicians in Washington, DC."
"Hindsight alone is not wisdom. And second-guessing is not a strategy."
".(O)ur nation has only one option: We must keep our word, defeat our enemies, and stand behind the American military in its vital mission."
"If there are people inside our country who are talking with al-Qaeda, we want to know about it - because we will not sit back and wait to be hit again."
Contrast those statements with John Kerry's professed belief that the United States should only use military force to protect its interests and citizens if it gets permission from the United Nations. Kerry is the king of "retreat and defeat" crowd. He's the head moonbat. Cut-and-run would have become official U.S. policy. The Kerry doctrine would be, to paraphrase a line by actor Jim Carey in the "Liar, Liar" movie, "Hit me again, bin Laden...and this time put some stank on it!"
So yes, this year's SOTU was a clear reminder of the wisdom of keeping Teresa Heinz's "squeeze" out of the Oval office. But it also reminded conservatives of what is driving them nuts with this White House.
Let's start with immigration.
Or I should say, ILLEGAL immigration. The "illegal" part is the key part. And while President Bush talked tough about tightening our borders, he continued to insist that any such legislation include an amnesty component, though he also continues to insist his "guest worker" program is NOT an amnesty program.
The White House doesn't have a tin ear on this issue; it's DEAF. And it isn't just conservatives who want stricter border control without the amnesty...er, guest worker program. Citizens from sea to shining sea of all political stripes simply won't support any kind of "guest worker" program until they FIRST see serious and dramatic changes in how the nation's immigration laws are enforced. Period. End of story.
But there was an even more outrageous statement made by the president on this issue in the speech - and it shows that this White House still doesn't "get it," or doesn't want to get it. "We hear claims that immigrants are somehow bad for the economy," the president said.
Bull! This is a dishonest cheap shot at opponents of his amnesty proposal. No one has said that immigrants are bad for the economy. However, quite a few folks have said that ILLEGAL immigrants are a drain on local, state and the national economies. And they are. That one word makes a BIG difference. The president clearly was trying to infer that anyone who opposed ILLEGAL immigration is ipso facto anti-immigrant. That kind of false statement and tactic should be below the President of the United States. But it wasn't. How disappointing.
Then there's the spending issue.
The president said, "I am pleased that members of Congress are working on earmark reform," a comment which caused Sen. John McCain to clap and bounce his head like Goofy on crack. "And we can tackle this problem together, if you pass the line-item veto."
No, Mr. President. We can tackle this problem if you would just use the veto power you ALREADY possess. You have yet to veto a single spending bill, including that earmark-loaded Porkapalooza highway bill last summer. You didn't need a line-item veto to erase the Bridge to Nowhere. All you needed was a Bic pen. You could have borrowed mine.
Then there was Social Security reform.
"Congress did not act last year on my proposal to save Social Security," the president said, receiving a hootin'-and-hollerin' standing "O" from the Democrats; his best line of the evening from their perspective. So what does the president propose to do about it THIS year? What any red-blooded politician would do in a similar situation, of course: Kick the can down the street by "creating a commission" to do the job our congress-critters were elected to do. That's leadership?
Back to spending.
Let's see, the president called for "a 22-percent increase in clean energy research," "to double the federal commitment to the most critical basic research programs in the physical sciences," a new training program for "70,000 high school teachers, to lead advanced-placement courses in math and science," "add resources to encourage young people to stay in school" and "provide new funding to states" for AIDS medicines.
All fine-sounding programs. But here's the gazillion dollar question: Exactly how much are these new programs going to cost us, and what are the "offsets" going to be to pay for them? Or are we just going to keep adding new spending programs on top of new spending programs without cutting out some old spending programs? Which will mean one of two things: (1) Higher taxes down the road to pay for the new programs, or (2) Bigger and bigger deficits. Neither or which are acceptable to conservatives. So again, where are the offsets?
And finally, education.
The president called for math and science course which are "rigorous enough to compete with other nations." Laudable goal. But does he really believe our government-run public schools can accomplish that? As John Stossel ("Stupid In America") would say, "Gimme a break."
If the president wants "schools that teach every child;" if he wants American students to excel and be able to compete with their peers in other countries; if he wants to assure that American kids get the kind of education which will help them "succeed in life" and thereby "ensure that America succeeds in the world," then he has no choice but to abandon his top-down No Child Left Behind program and push for true, meaningful school choice which empowers parents and breaks up the monopoly and stranglehold the educrats and teachers unions have on our school systems.
And that includes vouchers for EVERYBODY'S kids, not just the kids in the worst of the worse public schools. No matter what Teddy Kennedy says.
So yes, this year's State of the Union speech was a big reminder. A reminder of why we didn't elect John Kerry in 2004. And a reminder of what conservatives need to look for in a new presidential candidate in 2008.
* * *Thud! by Tony Snow
Conservative reaction to Bush's worst SOTU yet.
The Real Bush? -- Bob Novak
Like father, like son, at least in domestic policy.
New Weapon Could Mean the End of Collateral Damage -- Insight Mag
Alito Sides with "Liberals" Against "Conservatives" in His First Decision -- Associated Press
This doesn't sound good.
House Narrowly Passes $39-billion Budget "Cut" Bill -- Associated Press
The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
FEBRUARY 1, 2006
Sam Alito Confirmed by a Vote of 58 to 42
President Delivers Uninspiring, Disappointing "State of the Union" Speech
The Real Bush? -- Bob Novak
Senate Obstructionists Finally Defeated in 72-to-25 Vote To End Debate on Alito Nomination -- Associated Press
After two months since his nomination by President Bush, the U.S. Senate is finally finished with its political posturing over and rhetorical questioning of moderate Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito. The efforts by Far Left Democrats to smear Alito as "outside the mainstream" and a "right wing extremist" (I wish it were so!) failed to accomplish much more than delaying the confirmation process. The desperate attempt by senators Kennedy and Kerry of Massachusetts to continue the so-called "debate" (distortions) over Alito by means of filibuster fell on its face with only 25 Democrats joining the last-minute monkey-wrench tactic. This clears the way for a final vote to confirm Alito tomorrow morning -- thwarting the hopes of obstructionist Democrats that they might keep President Bush from having one more applause line in his State of the Union speech.
Kennedy Disgraces Himself and His Party by Smearing Alito -- Jerry Zeifman
The senior reactionary buffoon from Massachusetts gets a well-deserved tongue lashing from a former Chief Counsel for the Democrat Party. Teddy is so shameful in his behavior on the Judiciary Committee that he embarrasses even his fellow Democrats!
Iraqi General Says Syria Gave Al Qaida Saddam's WMDs -- NewsMax
If true, this is serious and means that Bush made a big mistake by not going into Iraq sooner instead of dilly-dallying around with he UN and Europe and telegraphing his punches to Saddam. Trying to persuade potential allies to join the effort to topple Saddam was necessary, but wasting time on those left-wing European regimes which were on the take from Saddam in the UN's Oil-for-Food scam was counter-productive and gave the Baathists the time they needed to move the WMDs.
Howard Dean Implicates Harry Reid in Abramoff Scandal -- NewsMax
Hugo Chavez Backs Cindy Sheehan's Protest Plan-- Associated Press
Bush & Clinton: Opposite Policies on Terrorists as “Peace” Partners-- Mary Mostert
Hamas Oath Vows Death to Jews -- NewsMax.com
WHY IT'S OK TO HATE WHITE PEOPLE by the late Samuel Francis
Iraqi General Provides Further Confirmation of Existence of WMDs -- NY Sun
Fed Up with Democrat Distortions -- David Limbaugh
Minority Senate Democrats Plan to Attempt Filibuster to Stop Alito Confirmation (led by the Junior Buffoon from Massachusetts)
Last-minute smear tactics are being readied to use against the moderate mild-mannered judge. And if that fails, they will hold their breath until they turn blue in the face and stamp their feet!
But Reid Admits Democrats Can't Block Alito -- NewsMax
Never trust anything Harry says.
What We Learned From The Alito Hearings: Power-Lusting Democrats Will Stop at Nothing to Seize Control & Disrupt -- Elizabeth Dole
Medical Marijuana Advocate Steve Kubby Arrested in San Francisco -- LA Times
* * *"Some sad news - NBC has cancelled the West Wing.
The NBC show "West Wing" has been cancelled.
That's when you know things are bad -- when even
fictional Democrats aren't doing well. Can't even
get elected on TV anymore!"- Jay Leno, The Tonight Show
ANOTHER UNION SUCCESS STORY
"Ford unveiled its 'Way Forward' plan, which will close 14 facilities and cut at least 25,000 plant jobs."
Al Gore Led Effort to Tap Every Phone in America -- Charles R. Smith
Red China Makes "World's Worst Dictators" List
Iran's Leader Challenges Europe to Take Back Jews in Israel -- AP
Not a Bad Time to Take Stock -- Peggy Noonan in WSJ
Thoughts on the decline of the liberal media monopoly and the future of the GOP.
The Barrett Report -- Robert Novak
The question is: What got left out?
Minority Leader Reid Apologizes to GOP -- AP
You cannot believe anything Harry says.
The Pain Party -- John Tierney
Doctors are now going to prison merely for prescribing more pain pills than the Drug Enforcement Agency and prosecutors deem a "legitimate medical purpose."
Walter Williams Stack for Friday's Broadcast
Libertarian economist Walter Williams guest hosted Rush Limbaugh's Talk Show on Friday. Here is the partial summary of the program.
* * *
SCOTUS RULES THAT ASSISTED SUICIDE IS A STATE, NOT A FEDERAL, MATTER"Supreme Court watchers can be forgiven if they thought they were in a Twilight Zone episode yesterday as they read the 6-3 opinion upholding Oregon's assisted-suicide law against attempted federal encroachment. The High Court's liberal wing, joined by Sandra Day O'Connor and Anthony Kennedy, has suddenly discovered the Constitutional virtues of federalism. Meanwhile, Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, along with Chief Justice John Roberts, argue in favor of the broad grant of federal power that the Attorney General was seeking in Gonzales v. Oregon. Count us with the federalists in this one, even if they are of the born-again variety."- Wall Street Journal editorial, 1/18/06"The Supreme Court's (assisted suicide) decision is a welcome win for defenders of limited government. The Court not only strikes down federal efforts to squash Oregon's experiment with assisted dying, but calls the federal policy inconsistent with the 'principles of our federal system.' Last summer, the Court upheld sweeping federal power to regulate local medical decisions in Gonzales v. Raich. Court-watchers called Raich a disaster for the 'federalism revolution' (the Court's effort to revive constitutional limits on federal power.) As Justice Thomas notes, today's decision marks a 'hasty retreat' from Raich and signals that the federalism revolution isn't yet over."- Mark Moller of the Cato Institute
OSAMA BIN LADEN ASKS FOR TRUCE
In an audio tape broadcast by AlJazeera, Osama bin Laden cited President Bush's decreased support in recent popularity surveys and proposed a truce in Iraq. This audio tape indicates that bin Laden is still alive, that he has not died of natural or other causes; so, we can still capture or kill him. By proposing the conditional truce, he is revealing weakness and the need to rebuild his forces. The message also clearly shows that bin Laden considers the war in Iraq to be the central focus in the terrorist war. In Islamic culture and history, truces are entered into only for a limited period in order for them to rebuild their forces and prepare for a continuation of the jihad or war at a later time.
U.S. UAV Attack Killed Four Top Jihadists, including al-Qaida Weapons Expert -- But Missed al-Zawahiri -- NewsMax.com
Senate Democrats Obstruct Vote on Alito -- Center for Individual Freedom
WALTER WILLIAMS AGAIN TO HOST
MOST-LISTENED-TO TALK RADIO PROGRAM
THIS COMING FRIDAY
Constitutionalist and free-market economist Walter E. Williams, of George Mason University, will once again assume control of the "Golden EIB Microphone" this coming Friday, January 20, during Rush Limbaugh's vacation from the EIB studios. On the West Coast, the program airs between 9:00 am and noon on KFI 640 KHz and KIXW 960 KHz and other radio stations. Don't miss it!
The massive post-invasion evidence mounts confirming that it was the mainstream media and leading Democrats, not the Bush Administration, who lied to the American people on the issue of pre-war ties between Saddam Hussein's regime and Al Qaeda terrorists. We now know that during the years before 9/11/01 and the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, thousands of terrorists were trained inside Iraq by the Iraqi military. But don't hold your breath waiting for an apology from the New York Times, the TV networks, and the rest of the partisan establishment media. Having a cynical contempt for the intelligence and attention spans of the American people, the mainstream media hopes that the repeated lie that "Bush lied" will still be taken seriously by enough people for it to stick. After all, their motto is: perception IS realityl And, although their influence is gradually waning, the establishment liberal-left media news twisters still have a great deal of influence on public opinion, especially on those who watch TV news, and they know it.
Will they get away with it? Not if enough informed individuals continue to point out the truth. The mainstream media can no longer ignore or cover up the growing body of evidence which confirms the terrorist links to Saddam.
Marine Corps counter-terrorism specialist W. Thomas Smith, Jr. points out that "those with connections to the U.S. special operations community have long known that the pre-war link between Saddam and the Al Qaeda terrorist network is not only a fact, but one that had to be addressed as part of the global war on terror."
He recalls that the mainstream media ignored or glossed over the parts of the 9/11 Commission Report which admitted evidence for those links. As just one example, the report states that “[Osama] bin Laden himself met with a senior Iraqi intelligence officer in Khartoum in late 1994 or early 1995.” Bin Laden asked the Iraqi official for weapons procurement assistance and permission to establish terrorist training facilities in Iraq. While the Commission's report claimed that it was not known what response was given bin Laden's requests, it leaves the issue somewhat hanging with the statement that “The ensuing years saw additional efforts to establish connections [between Al Qaeda and Saddam's regime].” Elsewhere the 9/11 Report admits there was some evidence to indicate possible collaboration with Al Qaeda-affiliated terrorists. Smith, who did read the report, writes:
"[T]here was Ansar al Islam, an Al Qaeda-affiliated terrorist group with training camps in Northern Iraq prior to 2003. This group was hoping to establish an Islamist state in Iraq. But the – again, rarely read – 9/11 Commission Report clearly states, 'There are indications that [by 2001] the Iraqi regime tolerated and may even have helped Ansar al Islam against the common Kurdish enemy.'"
Since the invasion, materials captured, translated, and analyzed have only added further evidence. Smith reports, "Intelligence gathered since the U.S. invasion indicates that as early as the late 1990’s, Iraq's Unit 999 (a special branch of the old regime’s army) was directly involved in the training of foreign terrorists inside Iraq. Intelligence about U.S. and other Western forces was shared between operatives of the Iraqi intelligence services and Al Qaeda. And foreign terrorists operating in the region (outside of Iraq) who needed medical attention or other support received it once inside Iraqi borders."
Secret terrorist training camps in Samarra, Ramadi, and Salman Pak -- all inside Iraq -- were directed by elite Iraqi military units. At Salman Pak, a facility south of Baghdad, a number of videos, computer disks, documents, and other materials, including explicitly Jihadist propaganda. revealed terrorist training footage, where the targets were clearly Americans, and notes and communications (since translated into English) which document the cooperation between the Baathist regime and various terrorist groups.
Sargat – an enormously significant international terrorist training camp in northeastern Iraq near the Iranian border -- was run by Ansar al Islam, and based on information from the U.S. Army special forces operators who led the attack, it is indeed "more than plausible" that Al Qaeda members trained there.
“[A Special Forces sergeant] believed, given the heavy fortifications, ample weaponry, and quality of the fighters, that his team had just invaded the world’s largest existing terrorist training camp since the fall of the Taliban in Afghanistan. This was no way-station, in his view. It was remote yet in the heart of the region, so radicals could wreak havoc all over the Middle East.” (Linda Robinson, Masters of Chaos, Public Affairs, 2004)
According to Robinson, the American Green Berets discovered among the dead in Sargat: foreign ID cards, airline-ticket receipts, visas, and passports from Yemen, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Tunisia, Morocco, and Iran.
Others who were in a position to know the truth about the Iraq-terrorist links are now speaking out, hoping not to be ignored as they were in the past. “There were terrorists training in Iraq prior to our invasion of that country,” according to retired U.S. Army Lt. Gen. John Bruce Blount, former chief of staff of Allied Forces Southern Europe. “No question about it. There also were many things Saddam was doing – money, passports, visas, you name it – to further the terrorists ability to operate in other places throughout the world.”
Another expert on Middle Eastern jihadism, Dr. Walid Phares, states: “The Saddam-Al Qaeda cooperation was centered around weakening the U.N.-sponsored, U.S.-British-backed sanctions against Iraq. Al Qaeda would strike U.S. interests, prompting a U.S. withdrawal from the region. Iraq would in turn provide some facilities and other services to Al Qaeda’s operatives and local allies without necessarily becoming their main supplier or strategic partner.”
International terrorists like Jordanian-born Abu Musab al Zarqawi were able to access many locations in Iraq long before the 2003 invasion, and this was known prior to the invasion. But those in the intelligence community -- and in the partisan liberal media -- who had insisted that there could never be any cooperation between Islamic jihadists and a secular dictator like Saddam Hussein simply ignored these facts and continued to challenge the claims that there had been links to terrorism in Iraq. Unfortunately, many people bought into that line and have accepted it as true. But those journalists and analysts who relied on that flawed ideological template of false assumptions now have embarrassing egg on their faces.
Smith asks an important question: Why is the White House not jumping all over the fact that terrorists were indeed training in pre-invasion Iraq as defensible proof and one of the reasons why we had no choice but to invade that country? And here is the answer he gives:
"The answer is simple and unfortunate: Many in the mainstream media have been so successful at debunking any evidence, proof, or substantive facts as they relate to the Saddam-Al Qaeda connection, that any new information supporting any facts those of us in-the-know already know will simply be rejected. The new information will be seen as desperate backtracking on old ground. The White House, which is committed to winning the war, will be seen as being in a defensive mode regarding issues that now have no strategic or tactical relevance in the future prosecution of the war. And the general public, which has been fed a steady diet of Iraq-is-the-wrong-theater since 2003, no longer knows what to believe."
Commander Mark Divine, a U.S. Navy SEAL officer who served in Iraq and who now operates the NavySEALs.com website, explains: “There is tremendous evidence to suggest there were terrorist training camps in Iraq before 9/11. . . . Those who have decided that the Iraq-Al Qaeda connection claims (along with WMD) were ginned up by Bush to bolster the rationale for going into Iraq, are so firmly invested in those beliefs that they wouldn't believe any corroborating evidence anyhow.”
In other words, the "anti-war" zealots don't want to be confused by facts, so wedded are they to their claims that "Bush lied" and that there were no links between Saddam and the jihadists. They would now have to admit that Bush was on target all along. Don't hold your breath waiting for their apology.
The Pre-War Links between Saddam & Al Qaeda - W. Thomas Smith, Jr.
There He Blows Again! -- Ben Johnson
Albert Gore unleashes his fury -- and dishonesty -- in his latest attention-grabbing kooky rant.
Iran Policy is Calculated Risk -- Tony Blankley
K Street Candidates -- Robert Novak
HUMAN EVENTS BACKS SHADEGG
FOR MAJORITY WHIP
"(N)ow that (Rep. John) Shadegg (R-Ariz.) is in the race (to replace House Majority Leader Tom DeLay), there is no question he is the conservative candidate for the job.
"In the last five years, the Republican Party has drifted from its commitment to limited government. During this time, the two biggest mistakes Republicans in the House made were to approve the No Child Left Behind education law and the Medicare prescription drug entitlement. Both increased federal spending and federal power, reducing the autonomy of states and individuals.
"Representatives John Boehner (R.-Ohio) and Roy Blunt (R.-Mo.) voted for both. Shadegg opposed both. That ought to settle the issue.
"Making Boehner or Blunt majority leader likely will bring more of the same in the Republican congressional leadership. By contrast, in a letter to his Republican colleagues announcing his candidacy for leader, Rep. Shadegg said, 'The party of Reagan exists not to expand government, but to protect the American people from government's excess.'
"The editors of HUMAN EVENTS say, Bravo! We encourage conservatives to support John Shadegg for House majority leader."-~Human Events editorial, 1/13/06
PRIVATE ENTERPRISE POSTAL REFORM
IN VARIOUS COUNTRIES AROUND THE WORLD
"As captive consumers, barred by a federally enforced monopoly from taking our letter business elsewhere, this might be a good time to look at how mail delivery is handled in the rest of the world. In contrast to the United States, many industrialized nations -- and even some developing ones -- are opening mail delivery to free-market competition.
"In some places, governments have retained ownership of the former state monopoly, which competes with private companies, while other countries have gone in for wholesale privatization. Let's take a brief tour of the globe..."
To read the rest of the story, click here: http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/opinion/orl-insryanpostal0806jan08,0,1782445.story
* * *
THE REPUBLICAN REVOLT AGAINST SCHWARZENEGGER,
THE NOT-SO-CRYPTO DEMOCRAT
"At some point, an elected official's actions can become so erratic that they call into question his basic competence as a leader. It simply needs to be said. Those who raised serious questions in the beginning as to (California) Gov. Schwarzenegger's (R) basic competence have been proven right. Gov. Schwarzenegger to date has not shown that he possesses the basic skills needed to competently govern. Gov. Schwarzenegger should not run for re-election and should no longer enjoy the endorsement of the California Republican Party if he does so."- Former Calif. GOP Chairman Michael Schroeder
Jan. 14, Orange County Register
Ayman al-Zawahiri, Top Lieutenant to bin Laden in al Qaeda, May Have Been Killed By CIA Drone Attack, Pakistani Sources Say
We should await the DNA results to be sure before celebrating, but this sounds good! ~Eddie
Regional Showdown Brewing Over Iran: The Nuclear Nightmare -- The Independent
This situation is every bit as dangerous as the Cuban missile crisis was. The mullahs of Iran are just as fanatical, if not more so, than the Communists.~Eddie
SAM ALITO SUCCESSFULLY ENDURES OVER 18 HOURS OF GRANDSTANDING AND INTERROGATION BY SENATE BUFFOONS
What the Dems really want is a Far Left Democrat partisan like Stevens or Ginsburg, but, much to their chagrin, Alito has eluded their attempts to discover any dirt they can use to thwart his confirmation. Like the Biblical Pharisees of the Sanhedron who tried to trip up Jesus with trick questions, Senators Schumer, Feinstein, Kennedy, and the rest of that corrupt bunch of hypocritical socialist windbags, were no match for either Roberts or Alito. ~Eddie
Democrats Should Stop Their Charade on Alito -- Stephen Chapman
Alito Emerges Unscathed by Senate Committee Grilling
Alito Ends Testimony, Heads Toward Senate Approval
Alito Expected to be Confirmed
* * *
Captured Documents Confirm that Thousands of Terrorists Were Trained In Iraq by Saddam's Military
Iraqi Intelligence Documents: Saddam Trained Thousands of Terrorists at Iraq Training Camps
In one of the least reported stories in the history of journalism, documents and other materials confiscated by the US military in the wake of the Iraq invasion revealed that Saddam Hussein's regime trained thousands of terrorists inside Iraq.
According for Stephen Hayes of The Weekly Standard, Saddam Hussein trained thousands of radical Islamic terrorists from the region at camps in Iraq over the four years immediately preceding the U.S. invasion. Hayes cites documents written in Arabic and photographs recovered and confirmed by eleven US government officials.
"The secret training took place primarily at three camps--in Samarra, Ramadi, and Salman Pak--and was directed by elite Iraqi military units. Interviews by U.S. government interrogators with Iraqi regime officials and military leaders corroborate the documentary evidence," wrote Hayes in his expose' for The Weekly Standard.
Many of the over 8,000 fighters were from terrorist groups with close ties to al Qaeda, including the Sudanese Islamic Army. It's believed, based on the Iraqi intelligence documents translated, that 2,000 terrorists were trained at these Iraqi camps each year from 1999 to 2002, putting the total number at or above 8,000, says Hayes.
"Intelligence officials believe that some of these terrorists returned to Iraq and are responsible for attacks against Americans and Iraqis. According to three officials with knowledge of the intelligence on Iraqi training camps, White House and National Security Council officials were briefed on these findings in May 2005; senior Defense Department officials subsequently received the same briefing."
The documents cited include handwritten notes, typed documents, audiotapes, videotapes, compact discs, floppy discs, and computer hard drives. Taken together, this collection could give U.S. intelligence officials and policymakers an inside look at the activities of the former Iraqi regime in the months and years before the Iraq War.
Why isn't this revelation being trumpeted in Washington? Because it exposes the ineptness of the intelligence community and would embarrass many political leaders who maintain that there were no ties between Saddam and radical Islamic terrorist groups.
According to Stephen Hayes, "It exposes the flawed assumptions of the experts and US intelligence officials who told us for years that a secularist like Saddam Hussein would never work with Islamic radicals, any more than such jihadists would work with an infidel like the Iraqi dictator. It also reminds us that valuable information remains buried in the mountain of documents recovered in Afghanistan and Iraq over the past four years."
Nearly three years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, only 50,000 of these 2 million "exploitable items" have been thoroughly examined. That's 2.5 percent. Despite the hard work of the individuals working on the "DOCEX" project, the process is not moving quickly enough, says Michael Tanji, a former Defense Intelligence Agency official who helped lead the document exploitation effort for 18 months. "At this rate," he says, "if we continue to approach DOCEX in a linear fashion, our great-grandchildren will still be sorting through this stuff."
Most of the 50,000 translated documents relate directly to weapons of mass destruction programs and scientists, since David Kay and his Iraq Survey Group--who were among the first to analyze the finds--considered those items top priority. "At first, if it wasn't WMD, it wasn't translated. It wasn't exploited," says a former military intelligence officer who worked on the documents in Iraq.
In November 2005, Michigan congressman Pete Hoekstra wrote to John Negroponte, the new director of national intelligence. Hoekstra, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, submitted to Negroponte a list of 40 documents recovered in postwar Iraq and Afghanistan and asked to see them. The documents were translated or summarized, given titles by intelligence analysts in the field, and entered into a government database known as HARMONY. Most of them are unclassified.
For several weeks, Hoekstra was promised a response. He finally got one on December 28, 2005, in a meeting with General Michael Hayden, principal deputy director of national intelligence. Hayden handed Hoekstra a letter from Negroponte that promised a response after January 1, 2006. Hoekstra took the letter, read it, and scribbled his terse response. "John--Unacceptable." Hoekstra told Hayden that he would expect to hear something before the end of the year. He didn't."I can tell you that I'm reaching the point of extreme frustration," said Hoekstra.
Other members of Congress--including Rep. Dana Rohrabacher and Senators Rick Santorum and Pat Roberts--also demanded more information from the Bush administration on the status of the vast document collection.
* * *
Saddam's Terror Training Camps -- Stephen F. Hayes, Weekly Standard
THE MINE DISASTER
Miners Might Have Survived by Just Walking Out -- James Dao and Felicity Barringer
OSHA can kill.
Exploding Mine Had Been Cited for Hazards -- Washington Post
Bad worker protection drives out good when we rely on government regulations.
DEMOCRATS PLAN TO DESTROY SAM ALITO
Democrats Plan to Destroy Alito -- Matt Drudge
They want to do to Alito what they did to Bork and almost did to Clarence Thomas. The politics of personal destruction continues with a vengeance while GOP leaders act as if all is normal, politics as usual.~Eddie
Media Bias Is Real, Finds UCLA Political Scientist -- UCLA News
Indeed, this study actually understates the problem of liberal bias in news reporting.
Governor Arnold has apparently surrendered any pretense of fiscal conservatism and is now a virtual Democrat in the policies he favors.
Gold Hits $541 as Federal Reserve's Fiat Dollar Continues Decline -- Market Watch
* * *
Natural Gas, Oil Occur Naturally and Are Not Dwindling "Fossil Fuels," Says Prominent Scientist -- American Free Press
LETTER PROVES NANCY PELOSI & DEMOCRATS
PRESIDENT HAD AUTHORITY TO AUTHORIZE EAVESDROPPING
AGAINST TERRORISTS INSIDE THE U.S.
-- CONTRADICTING THEIR CURRENT CLAIMS
Congressional Intelligence Panel Had Clue About Spying -- AP
New York Times Says NSA Acted On its Own after 9/11 -- NewsMax
Without presidential authorization.
The 'Loud Silence' of the New York Times -- Geoff Metcalf
Files Say Agency Initiated Growth of Spying Effort -- NYT
FISA Fallacies -- NRO
Democrat Platform: Support Al-Qaeda's Right to Plot to Kill Americans in Private -- Rush Limbaugh
President Bush has acknowledged he authorized the NSA to eavesdrop - without warrants - on international calls and e-mails of Americans and others inside the United States with suspected ties to al-Qaida or its affiliates.
"I can say that if somebody from al-Qaida is calling you, we'd like to know why," Bush said this week. "This program is conscious of people's civil liberties, as am I."
GERALDO AND THE MEDIA LIED; MINERS DIED
Giving false hope and joy to families of miners trapped after a West Virginia mining explosion, Geraldo Rivera oif Fox News, Ann Scott Tyson of the Washington Post, James Dao of the New York Times, and other reporters ran late last night with a story that claimed that 12 of the miners had been found alive, but it was later revealed that this was, sorrowfully, not true and that only one of the 12 miners was found alive (just barely) and the rest have been confirmed dead. Disappointed family and friends of the deceased are understandably bitter against this, another example of irresponsible journalism.
Joy Turns to Grief, Anger As All But One Miner Found Dead -- CNN
Media Report Miracle Mine Rescue -- Then Carry the Tragic Truth-- Editor & Publisher
Katrina Media Proves It Cannot Be Trusted -- EIB
Alito Gets High Marks From Bar Association -- AP
I don't know if that is a good thing or not. ~Editor
Knee-Jerk Socialists Use Old Playbook on Alito -- Rush Limbaugh
Key Events in Abramoff Investigation -- NewsMax
Murders Soar in Wake of
By Jacqui Goddard
The city of Houston is appealing for emergency funding to help to fight a huge crime wave following the arrival of refugees from hurricane-hit New Orleans.
The issue is highly sensitive as the majority of the hurricane's victims were drawn from New Orleans's black underclass.
The murder rate in the Texan city leapt by 24 per cent last year, with the toll for November and December up by 70 per cent over the same period in 2004.
There were 324 murders in Houston in 2005, compared with 263 in 2004. Of the 2005 tally, 51 occurred in November and December - up 21 on the same period of 2004.
The police department has not monitored precisely how many can be attributed to those evacuated after Hurricane Katrina, but says that at least 12 homicides in the past four months have involved evacuees either as victims or perpetrators.
While stressing that they cannot lay all the blame at the door of hurricane evacuees, the police chief and the mayor suggest that the influx of as many as 150,000 extra people has been a contributory factor.
Harold Hurtt, the police chief, said: "We are beginning to see more involvement in violent offences by the evacuees who came here from Louisiana."
Bill White, Houston's mayor, is now appealing to the Federal Emergency Management Agency for $6.5 million (£3.8 million) to help to strengthen his police department.
The city is experiencing an opposite trend to New Orleans, where police say they have never seen things so quiet, with only two killings in four months.
© Copyright of Telegraph Group Limited 2006.
Half of Katrina Refuges Have Criminal Records -- Fox News
Blacks Seven Times More Likely to Commit Murder than Whites -- U.S. Dept. of Justice
* * *
Mother of Three Hamas Terrorists Umm Nidal Farhat: "Israelis are Not Civilians and There are No Prohibitions on Killing Them; I Am Willing to Sacrifice My Ten Sons" -- Dream2 TV interview
DECEMBER 25, 2005
DECEMBER 23, 2005
Congress Extends Patriot Act for Five Weeks, Ends Year on a Mixed Record-- Associated Press
The President Honoring His Oath -- David Limbaugh
* * *
Neville Chamberlain is Alive and Well -- Burt Prelutsky
James Robertson, A Clintonista Judge -- Robert Novak
Live and Let Spy -- Ann Coulter
"After 9-11, any president who was not spying on people calling phone numbers associated with terrorists should be impeached for being an inept commander in chief." Remember, folks, these were people in communications with foreign Al Qaeda terrorists, not innocent American citizens. That's what the Bush Administration is claiming anyway.
Some of the Media's Shabbiest Moments -- Brent Bozell
The Consumer Ripoff -- Walter E. Williams
Senate Passes 6-Month Extension for Patriot Act in Late-Evening Compromise -- Fox News
Sen. Larry Craig: Hillary Would Abuse Patriot Act -- Newsmax.com
I think the Senator is right. Emergency powers should have sunset provisions and independent oversight. Emergency powers should never be made permanent and routine. They should last only as long as the emergency lasts. ~Eddie
President Had Legal Authority to OK Taps -- Chicago Tribune
President Bush's post- Sept. 11, 2001, authorization to the National Security Agency to carry out electronic surveillance into private phone calls and e-mails is consistent with court decisions and with the positions of the Justice Department under prior presidents, says President Bill Clinton's Associate Attorney General. In other words, Bush did not break the law, as some of Bush's political enemies have been implying.
Senate Passes $39.7 billion Deficit Reduction Bill by Narrowest Margin
Much greater spending cuts are urgently needed, of course, but given the strength of the reactionary, obstructionist Democrats and weak Republicans in the Senate, this is about all that can be expected for now.
RUSH DARES CALL IT CONSPIRACY
excerpted from Rush Limbaugh's broadcast of 12/19/2005
There's a story here from Editor & Publisher that ran on Saturday, ran on the 17th. "A Republican senator on Saturday accused the New York Times of endangering American security to sell a book by waiting until the day of the terror-fighting Patriot Act reauthorization to report that the government has eavesdropped on people with court-approved warrants." This is one of my all-time favorite senators, John Cornyn. That ones one of the -- in fact that was the fact, the point that I was making on Friday. There was an ongoing -- and I will even use the word conspiracy. There was a conspiracy and an ongoing effort to sabotage our ability to defeat this enemy, and whoever is behind it, whether in the Senate whether on the CIA, wherever they are is using the New York Times to destroy our effort to defeat this enemy, and also destroy this president. So Cornyn went out and basically said the same thing. That story's timing on Friday was not coincidental. It was to cover up what had happened over in Iraq or elections, and to set up that vote later in the day on the Patriot Act. There's no question that that's the timing on this.
There is a conspiracy -- it is the New York Times and whoever it is leaking to them -- designed to destroy US foreign policy as run by this administration, [and] to set themselves up [instead] as the de facto heads of US foreign policy. John Cornyn: "'At least two senators that I heard with my own ears cited this New York Times story as a reason why they decided to vote to not allow a bipartisan majority to reauthorize the Patriot Act. Well, as it turns out, the author of this article turned in a book three months ago and the paper, the New York Times, failed to reveal that the urgent story was tied to a book release and its sale by its author."
Cornyn didn't name the senators in his remarks on the floor... We know who. One of them was Schumer. Schumer proudly held up the New York Times and said, "We can't vote for the Patriot Act." Was Durbin the other one?
I'm going to tell you something here, folks. The issue is not FISA. It's not the FISA, not the FISA court. It's not torture. It's not any of the rest of this that the Democrats are trying to make hay out of.
The issue is a concerted and strategic effort by some in our country, including the New York Times, to defeat us -- and I mean to say it just that way -- not just sabotage our ability to defeat this enemy -- Al-Qaeda and international terrorism, but to defeat us. The same hate-America elements that were at work during the Vietnam War are at work today. They're not going to succeed because they can't get away with it under darkness and cover by willing accomplices in the mainstream press. The New York Times led the effort for a special prosecutor to investigate this phony Valerie Plame matter. They led the effort. It happened to set precedent for such investigations now. This is going to come back and bite these people and take a big chunk out of their rear ends before it's all said and done. The New York Times own reporter, Judith Miller, Judith got caught up in it. Now, as I said last hour, it is time to investigate this breach of our national security, time to subpoena James Risen of the New York Times, to subpoena him to appear before a grand jury. The left can talk all it wants about civil liberties but until the left respects the liberties of the American people, we know this is nothing more than political empty propaganda.
They don't care about civil liberties. They can talk about civil rights all they want but what about liberty? What about freedom that's at stake here in the war that we find ourselves in that was brought to us? And let me go one step further. We want to know the names of every member of Congress who was briefed on this program, and we want every one of them asked whether they leaked to the media, and if so, we want them expelled from Congress. This is war, damn it! These phony reporters and phony politicians must not be allowed to get away with this. It is essentially our defeat. Every member of Congress who knew about this program and is running around acting like they didn't know anything about it and demanding investigations, let's find out who they all are. They were briefed 12 times, the president said. Find out who they are, and subpoena their records and who they've been talking to. . . .
E&P: GOP Senator Accuses 'NY Times' of Endangering U.S. Security
American Thinker: The New York Times Intelligence Scandal - Thomas Lifson
NRO: The Corner
American Spectator: Thanks to the New York Times, the Iraq elections never happened
Poll Shows Most Americans Want Alito on the Supreme Court -- ABC News
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U.S. Economy Growing At Fast Rate Despite High Energy Costs and Hurricane Devastation -- breitbart.com
Liberal Columnist Admits Bush is Crippled by Inter-Agency Fratricide
That is true, but it is at least partly Bush's own fault for not replacing the Clinton Administration holdovers and Democrat retreads when he came into the Oval Office. Bush's "New Tone" -- never to criticize the previous administration and not to replace Clintonistas with loyal Bush appointees -- has come back to bite him in the butt as his policies are undermined by saboteurs from within the government.
Bush Says NSA Surveillance Necessary, Legal
In the wake of a New York Times story claiming that Bush's ordering of monitoring of calls into the U.S. from Al Qaeda agents was new and unprecedented, Bush defended himself from charges of acting illegally or unconstitutionally. The NYT piece launches a new anti-Bush book coming out in a few weeks and helps distract Americans from the positive news coming out of Iraq.
Bob Barr Questions Legality of Bush's Executive Order on Surveillance
While Democrats will, as always, try to create political hay out of any claim against Bush and the Republicans, it is important always to keep a watchful eye on our government leaders and maintain due vigilance to prevent abuse of emergency powers granted to fight the war against terrorists.
Media Mendacity, not George Bush, is the Real Scandal -- Gerard Jackson, BrookesNews.com
* * *Lest we forget . . .
Clinton's NSA Routinely Eavesdropped on U.S. Calls
NewsMax.comDuring the 1990's under President Clinton, the National Security Agency monitored millions of private phone calls placed by U.S. citizens and citizens of other countries under a super secret program code-named Echelon.
On Friday, the New York Times suggested that the Bush administration has instituted "a major shift in American intelligence-gathering practices" when it "secretly authorized the National Security Agency to eavesdrop on Americans and others inside the United States to search for evidence of terrorist activity without [obtaining] court-approved warrants."
But in fact, the NSA had been monitoring private domestic telephone conversations on a much larger scale throughout the 1990s - all of it done without a court order, let alone a catalyst like the 9/11 attacks.
In February 2000, for instance, CBS "60 Minutes" correspondent Steve Kroft introduced a report on the Clinton-era spy program by noting:
"If you made a phone call today or sent an e-mail to a friend, there's a good chance what you said or wrote was captured and screened by the country's largest intelligence agency. The top-secret Global Surveillance Network is called Echelon, and it's run by the National Security Agency."
NSA computers, said Kroft, "capture virtually every electronic conversation around the world."
Echelon expert Mike Frost, who spent 20 years as a spy for the Canadian equivalent of the National Security Agency, told "60 Minutes" that the agency was monitoring "everything from data transfers to cell phones to portable phones to baby monitors to ATMs."
Mr. Frost detailed activities at one unidentified NSA installation, telling "60 Minutes" that agency operators "can listen in to just about anything" - while Echelon computers screen phone calls for key words that might indicate a terrorist threat.
The "60 Minutes" report also spotlighted Echelon critic, then-Rep. Bob Barr, who complained that the project as it was being implemented under Clinton "engages in the interception of literally millions of communications involving United States citizens."
One Echelon operator working in Britain told "60 Minutes" that the NSA had even monitored and tape recorded the conversations of the late Sen. Strom Thurmond.
Still, the Times repeatedly insisted on Friday that NSA surveillance under Bush had been unprecedented, at one point citing anonymously an alleged former national security official who claimed: "This is really a sea change. It's almost a mainstay of this country that the NSA only does foreign searches."
U.S. DEMOCRATS LOSE AGAIN
AS IRAQIS TURN OUT ANOTHER SUCCESSFUL ELECTION
Insurgents Fail to Foil Further Progress in Iraq
Remarkably High Turnout Highlights Iraq Election -- NewsMax
Saddam's WMDs Moved to Syria, Says Israeli General
Certainly there was plenty of time to relocate Saddam's WMDs between the time when Bush announced he would invade and the time of the actual military operation to overthrow the Baathist regime. By spending so much time trying to negotiate with the UN and European governments -- which were on the take from Saddam in the Oil-for-Food scam -- that he "telegraphed his punches" and gave the Baathists and their allies time to move any WMDs they had.
Tancredo: Terrorist Suspects Crossing U.S. Borders -- NewsMax
House Passes Border Control Bill; Includes 700-Mile Fence
But will it get killed in the Senate?
The anti-Iraq War, troop-pullout message coming from Democratic leaders risks resurrecting, and this time solidifying, the soft-on-national security label that could hurt their party's chances in the midterm elections.
That's the view of some veteran Washington election analysts, as well as some of the Democrats' leading political advisers.
The fierce Democratic offensive in Congress to begin a withdrawal of U.S. military forces has turned into a cacophony of complaints that seem to have merged into a single antiwar cry largely led by the party's pacifist left.
That message, sharply escalated by Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean's declaration that the war is unwinnable, clashes with a strongly held belief among many Americans, including Democrats, that a democratic, stabilized Iraq would make the United States a safer country in the long run.
Here's what elections analyst Jennifer Duffy at the Cook Political Report, who thinks the left's Iraq-pullout crusade risks renewing voter doubts about the Democrats' national security credentials, has to say:
"The Democrats have been trying to erase this soft-on-defense-and-national-security label for years, and this is a potential setback in that effort. It sure handed Republicans some ammunition," she told me. "I think (troop withdrawal) probably plays well in the Democratic primaries, but it can be very problematic in general elections, especially in red states and swing states."
This means the Democratic message is getting scrambled in translation, and what voters are hearing is that Democrats will cut and run in the face of a sustained terrorist counteroffensive against U.S. military forces.
This is the message that Mr. Dean, who rose to prominence as an antiwar protester in the 2003-04 election cycle, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and other party leaders have been sending.
And that message, which is increasingly splitting the Democrats just as they are preparing for next year's election drive, is a deeply disturbing one for centrist party leaders who fear its political repercussions.
Listen to Leon Panetta, Bill Clinton's former White House chief of staff:
"You have to be careful that you don't say things that fail to unify the party. What Dean said, frankly, created more divisions than unified the party over what we ought to do in Iraq."
One of the party's clearest thinkers, Mr. Panetta does not believe we should precipitously pull out of Iraq before we finish our mission there. And unlike Mr. Dean, he thinks that the United States can achieve a level of national stability with a larger, well-trained Iraqi security force.
"I really do believe that if we had a clear strategy, we can ultimately provide sufficient stability in Iraq. I think that part is doable," he said.
So does one of President Bush's fiercest war critics, Democratic Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan. "I think that there's a chance of success," he said, "providing the Iraqis put their political house in order."
As for talk of a pullout at this stage in the war, Democrats Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer of Maryland say that withdrawal now would be tantamount to surrender before Iraqi government forces are ready to defend their country from the terrorist insurgency.
Echoing Ms. Duffy's political concerns, Illinois Rep. Rahm Emanuel, who chairs the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, says he fears the party's troop pullout posture could hurt its efforts to win additional House seats next year.
Like Mr. Panetta, a growing number of Democrats want Mr. Dean to button his lip on Iraq, saying he is doing more harm than good for the party. "My words to Howard Dean are simple -- shut up," Rep. Earl Pomeroy of North Dakota said last week.
Ms. Duffy said, "Dean's position is not universally shared within the party and all these folks are going to have to deal with this stuff" in next year's campaigns.
The upshot is that the Democrats' liberal antiwar wing is coming under surprisingly strong fire from the party's hawks, who say they will never win back the White House without staking out a get-tough national security posture in an age of terrorism.
Sen. Hillary Clinton, who has taken a generally centrist position on the war and has rejected troop withdrawal calls, knows this better than anyone. "I reject a rigid timetable that the terrorists can exploit," she said in a recent e-mail message to constituents and supporters.
That message has angered Democratic doves on the left, but the New York senator knows she cannot win the presidency in 2008 with just her party's left-wing base. She will need centrist swing voters, too -- Reagan Democrats who gave Bill Clinton two terms in office.
Where's George W. Bush in all of this? Well, a multi-pronged counteroffensive against his war critics may be paying off. Pollster John Zogby tells me that early preliminary numbers suggest that Mr. Bush's numbers "are a little better."
Donald Lambro, chief political correspondent of The Washington Times, is a nationally syndicated columnist
Many expert analysts of the war in Iraq will admit, at least in private, that there were many reasons for choosing to go into Iraq after Afghanistan -- some publicly given and others more confidential and having to do with a wider strategic plan. Leadfng Democrats, especially those in the U.S. Senate, and those who have opposed the war for their own political purposes, have been involved in a propaganda war to play down the evidence for two of the most public reasons given, viz., 1) links between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda (not to 9/11 -- which the Bush Administration never claimed) and 2) the need to disarm Saddam of his possible weapons of mass destruction since they could (potentially) be a threat to Americans and their use in the Middle East against his neighbors would in any case so destabilize the region and threaten American interests that the U.S. would have been drawn into the conflict inevitably anyway.
There were deeper, more complex strategic reasons for going into Iraq militarily -- but they are not as easy to explain and doing so to the general public would also undermine those strategic reasons by tipping off the enemy as well. The Bush Administration therefore had to fall back on the simpler, more obvious reasons, at least initially, in order to help gain public support for the effort to liberate Iraq. We don't usually talk about this, but it is important under the surface, regardless of the issues in the propaganda war which must be fought for the minds of the people while our military people fight in the life and death struggle over there.
But this also made Bush more vulnerable to attack by his detractors (who would, however, have criticized him in any case) because he could not show all his cards to the public without revealing them to those entities he intended to influence by his strategy.
It is important to keep in mind that the Bush-hating Left and the DNC and the turncoat Democrat politicians who originally supported the war -- but who now oppose it as they see its popularity waning in the carefully worded opinion polls -- would attack Bush's reasons for the war no matter how much evidence there was to support them. But if they can show the evidence to be weak, so much the better for their side politically.
That is why they seize on any rumor or leak from disgruntled anti-Bush pro-Democrat partisans from the CIA and State Department -- many Clinton retreads and holdovers from previous administrations -- intended to embarrass Bush or undermine the war against the terrorists. By blabbing to the public part of what they know, or claim to know, and distorting it to suit their political biases, these left-wing Democrat partisans don't care what is good for America's national security as long as they can make Bush and the Republicans look bad. The lies and contradictions being disseminated by Joe Wilson, husband of Valerie Plame (CIA) -- and their uncritical acceptance by their allies in the anti-Bush mainstream media -- is only one aspect of this on-gong propaganda war.
Now that it is admitted that relations between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda were not nearly as estranged as some in CIA and State have led us to believe, and now that nearly 2 tons of enriched uranium and other evidences of WMDs have been found in Iraq by our troops -- and we have reason to suspect that other WMD materials were moved to Syria or Iran prior to the war -- one would assume the Bush Administration would do a better job countering the "Bush lied" propaganda line of Howard Dean's DNC. But that may be too much to expect. At this point it is clear that President Bush did not lie about his publicly given reasons for going into Iraq, even while he did not emphasize or explain the more complex strategic geopolitical reasons.
Again, there is a limit to what Bush can say in detail for public consumption; it is the nature of war not to show all the cards in your hand to the other side. That's one reason why we "dodged a bullet" when Bush instead of Gore or Kerry got in. Neither Gore nor Kerry nor any other leading Democrat would be trustworthy at all, any more than Clinton was, when it comes to American security or dealing with the jihadists.
But the American people do not have the patience for a long, drawn-out war and/or occupation. The longer the occupation takes, the more unpopular the Iraq effort will probably become. We are the TV generation, after all, and long attention spans are not our strong suit.
This is also why I do not worry at all about any possibility of a global American military empireallegedly being planned by zealous "neocon" conspirators -- as certain websites would have you believe. The American people would never have the patience to put up with, much less endure, the cost and on-going burdens in treasure and American lives of maintaining anything close to that vision. It ain't gonna happen, folks. Let's get real and not get distracted by left-wing propaganda. Let's concentrate on the real imperialists in the world -- and that ain't us. But let's not hold our breaths waiting for Bush's political enemies -- Nancy Pelosi, Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, Harry Reid, Chuck Schumer, et al -- to apologize for calling Bush a liar and admit that he may have done the right thing in liberating Iraq after all.~Editor Eddie
* * *Tax Protestor Rides Nude on Horseback through Town!
Residents asked not to peak by courageous lady equestrian!
Twisting the Al-Qaida Connection
Posted by Mithridate Ombud on News Busters, November 28, 2005
(Reposted here by The Pasadena Pundit)
Robyn Blumner, former ACLU Director and current St. Petersburg Times columnist retreads this old leftist tire:Fox News gives its audience what it wants, too. That's why, in 2003, a survey from the Program on International Policy Attitudes found that 67 percent of its loyal viewers believed the fallacy that Saddam Hussein was connected to al-Qaida, whereas only 40 percent of those who relied on print media were confused on that point. Welcome to the "informed" electorate of a newspaper-free world. It's already starting to give us the government we deserve.(Notice that people who watch Fox are "fallacious believers," while the people who consume her product and don't agree with her are simply "confused".) Saddam connected to al-Qaida? That's a weird wild thought. Where on Earth would Fox News and this "informed electorate" get that "fallacious" idea? Let's see, maybe.
State of the Union Address January 28, 2003: "Evidence from intelligence sources, secret communications, and statements by people now in custody, reveal that Saddam Hussein aids and protects terrorists, including members of al-Qaida."
BBC Profile: "It is during this period that Zarqawi is thought to have renewed his acquaintance with al-Qaeda. He is believed to have fled to Iraq in 2001 after a US missile strike on his Afghan base, though the report that he lost a leg in the attack has not been verified. US officials argue that it was at al-Qaeda's behest that he moved to Iraq and established links with Ansar al-Islam - a group of Kurdish Islamists from the north of the country. He is thought to have remained with them for a while - feeling at home in mountainous northern Iraq."
Justice Department indictment of Bin Laden - Spring 1998: "Al Qaeda also forged alliances with the National Islamic Front in the Sudan and with the government of Iran and its associated terrorist group Hezballah for the purpose of working together against their perceived common enemies in the West, particularly the United States. In addition, al Qaeda reached an understanding with the government of Iraq that al Qaeda would not work against that government and that on particular projects, specifically including weapons development, al Qaeda would work cooperatively with the Government of Iraq."
Letter to Congress by CIA Director George Tenet: "Our understanding of the relationship between Iraq and Al Qaeda is evolving and is based on sources of varying reliability. Some of the information we have received comes from detainees, including some of high rank. We have solid reporting of senior level contacts between Iraq and Al Qaeda going back a decade. Credible information indicates that Iraq and Al Qaeda have discussed safe haven and reciprocal nonaggression. Since Operation Enduring Freedom, we have solid evidence of the presence in Iraq of Al Qaeda members, including some that have been in Baghdad. We have credible reporting that Al Qaeda leaders sought contacts in Iraq who could help them acquire W.M.D. capabilities. The reporting also stated that Iraq has provided training to Al Qaeda members in the areas of poisons and gases and making conventional bombs. Iraq's increasing support to extremist Palestinians coupled with growing indications of relationship with Al Qaeda suggest that Baghdad's links to terrorists will increase, even absent U.S. military action."
ABC News - August 25, 1998: Before the pharmaceutical plant was reduced to rubble by American cruise missiles, the CIA was secretly gathering evidence that ended up putting the facility on America's target list. Intelligence sources say their agents clandestinely gathered soil samples outside the plant and found, quote, "strong evidence" of a chemical compound called EMPTA, a compound that has only one known purpose, to make VX nerve gas. The U.S. had been suspicious for months, partly because of Osama bin Laden's financial ties, but also because of strong connections to Iraq. Sources say the U.S. had intercepted phone calls from the plant to a man in Iraq who runs that country's chemical weapons program.
Joe Lieberman on MSNBC's Hardball: "I want to be real clear about the connection with terrorists. I've seen a lot of evidence on this. There are extensive contacts between Saddam Hussein's government and al Qaeda and other terrorist groups. I never could reach the conclusion that [Saddam] was part of September 11. Don't get me wrong about that. But there was so much smoke there that it made me worry. And you know, some people say with a great facility, al Qaeda and Saddam could never get together. He is secular and they're theological. But there's something that tied them together. It's their hatred of us."
Other points by Tech Central Station:
* Abdul Rahman Yasin was the only member of the al Qaeda cell that detonated the 1993 World Trade Center bomb to remain at large in the Clinton years. He fled to Iraq. U.S. forces recently discovered a cache of documents in Tikrit, Saddam's hometown, that show that Iraq gave Mr. Yasin both a house and monthly salary.
* Bin Laden met at least eight times with officers of Iraq's Special Security Organization, a secret police agency run by Saddam's son Qusay, and met with officials from Saddam's mukhabarat, its external intelligence service, according to intelligence made public by Secretary of State Colin Powell, who was speaking before the United Nations Security Council on February 6, 2003.
* Sudanese intelligence officials told me that their agents had observed meetings between Iraqi intelligence agents and bin Laden starting in 1994, when bin Laden lived in Khartoum.
* Bin Laden met the director of the Iraqi mukhabarat in 1996 in Khartoum, according to Mr. Powell.
* An al Qaeda operative now held by the U.S. confessed that in the mid-1990s, bin Laden had forged an agreement with Saddam's men to cease all terrorist activities against the Iraqi dictator, Mr. Powell told the United Nations.
* In 1999 the Guardian, a British newspaper, reported that Farouk Hijazi, a senior officer in Iraq's mukhabarat, had journeyed deep into the icy mountains near Kandahar, Afghanistan, in December 1998 to meet with al Qaeda men. Mr. Hijazi is "thought to have offered bin Laden asylum in Iraq," the Guardian reported.
* In October 2000, another Iraqi intelligence operative, Salah Suleiman, was arrested near the Afghan border by Pakistani authorities, according to Jane's Foreign Report, a respected international newsletter. Jane's reported that Suleiman was shuttling between Iraqi intelligence and Ayman al Zawahiri, now al Qaeda's No. 2 man. (Why are all of those meetings significant? The London Observer reports that FBI investigators cite a captured al Qaeda field manual in Afghanistan, which "emphasizes the value of conducting discussions about pending terrorist attacks face to face, rather than by electronic means.")
* As recently as 2001, Iraq's embassy in Pakistan was used as a "liaison" between the Iraqi dictator and al Qaeda, Mr. Powell told the United Nations.
* Spanish investigators have uncovered documents seized from Yusuf Galan -- who is charged by a Spanish court with being "directly involved with the preparation and planning" of the Sept. 11 attacks -- that show the terrorist was invited to a party at the Iraqi embassy in Madrid. The invitation used his "al Qaeda nom de guerre," London's Independent reports.
* An Iraqi defector to Turkey, known by his cover name as "Abu Mohammed," told Gwynne Roberts of the Sunday Times of London that he saw bin Laden's fighters in camps in Iraq in 1997. At the time, Mohammed was a colonel in Saddam's Fedayeen. He described an encounter at Salman Pak, the training facility southeast of Baghdad. At that vast compound run by Iraqi intelligence, Muslim militants trained to hijack planes with knives -- on a full-size Boeing 707. Col. Mohammed recalls his first visit to Salman Pak this way: "We were met by Colonel Jamil Kamil, the camp manager, and Major Ali Hawas. I noticed that a lot of people were queuing for food. (The major) said to me: 'You'll have nothing to do with these people. They are Osama bin Laden's group and the PKK and Mojahedin-e Khalq.'"
* In 1998, Abbas al-Janabi, a longtime aide to Saddam's son Uday, defected to the West. At the time, he repeatedly told reporters that there was a direct connection between Iraq and al Qaeda.
*The Sunday Times found a Saddam loyalist in a Kurdish prison who claims to have been Dr. Zawahiri's bodyguard during his 1992 visit with Saddam in Baghdad. Dr. Zawahiri was a close associate of bin Laden at the time and was present at the founding of al Qaeda in 1989.
* Following the defeat of the Taliban, almost two dozen bin Laden associates "converged on Baghdad and established a base of operations there," Mr. Powell told the United Nations in February 2003. From their Baghdad base, the secretary said, they supervised the movement of men, materiel and money for al Qaeda's global network.
* In 2001, an al Qaeda member "bragged that the situation in Iraq was 'good,'" according to intelligence made public by Mr. Powell.
* That same year, Saudi Arabian border guards arrested two al Qaeda members entering the kingdom from Iraq.
* Abu Musaab al-Zarqawi oversaw an al Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan, Mr. Powell told the United Nations. His specialty was poisons. Wounded in fighting with U.S. forces, he sought medical treatment in Baghdad in May 2002. When Zarqawi recovered, he restarted a training camp in northern Iraq. Zarqawi's Iraq cell was later tied to the October 2002 murder of Lawrence Foley, an official of the U.S. Agency for International Development, in Amman, Jordan. The captured assassin confessed that he received orders and funds from Zarqawi's cell in Iraq, Mr. Powell said. His accomplice escaped to Iraq.
*Zarqawi met with military chief of al Qaeda, Mohammed Ibrahim Makwai (aka Saif al-Adel) in Iran in February 2003, according to intelligence sources cited by the Washington Post.
* Mohammad Atef, the head of al Qaeda's military wing until the U.S. killed him in Afghanistan in November 2001, told a senior al Qaeda member now in U.S. custody that the terror network needed labs outside of Afghanistan to manufacture chemical weapons, Mr. Powell said. "Where did they go, where did they look?" said the secretary. "They went to Iraq."
* Abu Abdullah al-Iraqi was sent to Iraq by bin Laden to purchase poison gases several times between 1997 and 2000. He called his relationship with Saddam's regime "successful," Mr. Powell told the United Nations.
* Mohamed Mansour Shahab, a smuggler hired by Iraq to transport weapons to bin Laden in Afghanistan, was arrested by anti-Hussein Kurdish forces in May, 2000. He later told his story to American intelligence and a reporter for the New Yorker magazine.
* Documents found among the debris of the Iraqi Intelligence Center show that Baghdad funded the Allied Democratic Forces, a Ugandan terror group led by an Islamist cleric linked to bin Laden. According to a London's Daily Telegraph, the organization offered to recruit "youth to train for the jihad" at a "headquarters for international holy warrior network" to be established in Baghdad.
* Mullah Melan Krekar, ran a terror group (the Ansar al-Islam) linked to both bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. Mr. Krekar admitted to a Kurdish newspaper that he met bin Laden in Afghanistan and other senior al Qaeda officials. His acknowledged meetings with bin Laden go back to 1988. When he organized Ansar al Islam in 2001 to conduct suicide attacks on Americans, "three bin Laden operatives showed up with a gift of $300,000 'to undertake jihad,'" Newsday reported. Mr. Krekar is now in custody in the Netherlands. His group operated in portion of northern Iraq loyal to Saddam Hussein -- and attacked independent Kurdish groups hostile to Saddam. A spokesman for the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan told a United Press International correspondent that Mr. Krekar's group was funded by "Saddam Hussein's regime in Baghdad."
* After October 2001, hundreds of al Qaeda fighters are believed to have holed up in the Ansar al-Islam's strongholds inside northern Iraq.
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President Bush's approval rating is low, gas prices are still fairly high, cynicism and mistrust of business and political leaders are on the rise, but there is one thing Americans still believe in -- Santa Claus. But I am somewhat bothered by the message we may be sending kids with the Santa Claus holiday ritual. I mean, promising youngsters that, if they are good, a chubby White man will come to their homes and gleefully give them toys and goodies sounds like we are just setting them up for the welfare plantation system extolled by the Democrat Party (and all-too-often endorsed and expanded by the me-too Republicans)!
Fla. Judge Upholds Rush Limbaugh's Medical Privacy Rights
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"TOOKIE" FINALLY TERMINATED
Better Late than Never
After much speculation and amid outrageously excessive coverage in the California press and electronic media, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger finally refused to grant clemency for the Negro gang banger and convicted killer Stanley "Tookie" Williams, despite an enormous campaign supported by left-wing Hollywood celebrities and news media activists.
Charlatan and publicity hound Jesse Jackson visited the prison where Tookie was incarcerated four times on Monday alone -- hoping to get his face in front of television cameras. When asked by KFI talk show hosts John and Ken if he could name any of "Tookie's" four murder victims, the "Reverend" Jackson could not. Snoop Doggy Dogg also got into the act with a supportive visit with Williams, along with goons from the "Nation of Islam" gang.
The announcement that Tookie had finally died came about 12:35 a.m. on the Tuesday side of midnight. Evidently they had taken a little longer than they originally thought they would, having spent ten minutes to find an appropriate blood vesel in his left arm for one of the needles. But all's well that ends well -- although he surely should have been terminated 24 years ago.
I drink a toast to the just execution of heinous criminals like Tookie or mass murdering tyrants like Saddam Hussein!
The only problem with the death penalty in California is that too many automatic appeals delay the implementatoin of the sentence for way too long, and the taxpayers wind up spending far too much money on the worthless hides of those on Death Row.
There are those who claim that the political state has no right to put anyone to death, even a murderer. Some say that execution at the hands of the state is of the same nature as an act of murder itself and therefore is imporper. But, by that reasoning, would not incarceration also be improper -- the same as kidnaping? Or fines -- the same as robbery? Would we allow any and all persons guilty of heinous crimes simply to walk the streets free to do as they please? Not being an anarchist or an opponent of the death penalty, I on the other hand agree with the traditional classical liberal / libertarian view based on natural rights theory -- from Lilburne and Locke to Bastiat and Rand and Reisman -- that a person forfeits at least some of his rights to be left alone by the coercion of others if he initiates the use of coercion -- force or fraud -- against others. The right of retaliation rests with the people and may properly be delegated to government for more impartial implementation. It seems to me, therefore, proper and appropriate to impose the death penalty in certain extreme cases. And if anyone deserves the death penalty ("capital punishment"), Stanley "Tookie" Williams -- who was convicted of murdering four of the many persons he killed) is certainly among them. And obviously also such mass murderers as Saddam Hussein. Better late than never.
"Tookie" Williams and his band of supporters claimed he had "changed" -- but from what to what? He had been far from a model prisoner. He threw caustic chemicals into guards' faces. He continued his contacts with gang members. He threatened guards and other prisoners. He committed homosexual rape on other inmates. He repeatedly started fights and been a troublemaker within San Quinton. He dedicated at least one of his books to George Jackson, another lifelong criminal scumbag. He never apologized for the murders he committed or anything else he did in his miserable life. All the propaganda about "Tookie" being "redeemed" is a lot of nonsense. I applaud the governor's decision not to grant clemency to this multiple murderer. My only regret is that "Tookie" can be killed only one time, and that lethal injection is far too painless.
I know that some Objectivists oppose the death penalty -- but not because they don't believe the people and the government have no right to impose it as a penalty in retaliation against certain heinous crimes, but because of the possibility of error which cannot be compensated for if an innocent man is executed by mistake. I might agree with that except that, especially here in California, the protections afforded to a man charged with murder are so numerous and strong that it is hard for me to imagine that any innocent men are being executed by mistake. When it comes to capital punishment, the standard is set high enough to avoid such errors in my judgment. The problem in California is not that innocent men are apt to be executed by mistake, but that those fully known to be fully guilty of many murders are allowed to live decades at taxpayer expense while their lawyers go through the motions of appeal after appeal to put off the sentence.
I salute the excellent work of KFI talk show hosts, especially John & Ken, John Ziegler, and bill Handel, for telling the truth about Tookie Williams and his crimes -- and especially in revealing the lies and hypocrisies of those who came out from under the woodwork to clamor for clemency for this criminal miscreant. The entire radio station, KFI, AM 640 KHz, deserves a medal for its unusual honesty in reporting the truth and for exposing the lack of credibility of Jesse Jackson, Snoop Doggy Dogg, and the other poverty pimps and media-made celebs who supported this piece of human excrement.~Eddie
PROTECTING PRIVATE PROPERTY RIGHTS
by State Senator Tom McClintock
This week I have officially filed a Constitutional Amendment Initiative to protect property owners from abuses of eminent domain. The Homeowner & Property Protection Act will prevent the government from seizing property from one person for the private use and benefit of another as is currently permitted under the Kelo decision by the United States Supreme Court.
Click the link below to read the full text of the initiative.
The initiative is currently with the Attorney General awaiting official “Title & Summary.” Once approved, we will begin the process of gathering the 800,000 598,105 signatures required to qualify this measure for the ballot.
This is a large undertaking, but one that is vital for all Californians. According to the Institute for Justice in Washington D.C., California is one of the most aggressive states in the country in using eminent domain to take personal property for private use.
I am sharing this with you as a loyal supporter of my campaign for Lt. Governor next year because I believe it is another important battle that must be waged. However, I also want you to know that our statewide victory next November will continue to be my number one priority because of the trust that you have placed in me with your support.
Over the next sixty days we will determine if enough support is in place to wage both battles. Toward this end I am striving to make the strongest showing possible on our year end campaign report for Lt. Governor. This report will publicly disclose the condition of my campaign as of December 31st. I am pleased to report that we are VERY close to achieving our goal of having at least one million dollar of cash on hand which will send a very strong signal about the strength of our campaign!
The success of my campaign has come from individual donors like yourself.
I have only a few donors that have sent the maximum $5,300 allowed under current law, but thousands of contributors who have sent in $100, $50 or even $10 or $25 month after month. As this important deadline approaches I hope you can make an additional contribution so our report can be as strong as possible.
Use this link to donate: http://www.tommcclintock.net/donate.htm
Please forward this email to your friends and encourage them to join our team as well! It will also let them know about our plans for a property rights initiative and why this is also an important issue. It’s time for all Californians to stand up to the government bureaucrats and politicians who would seize our private property.
Sunday December 11
Massive Explosion Ignites Huge Fires at Fuel Depot Near London
Undoubtedly, this will be a major topic of discussion on the Drudge Report tonight. For those here in southern California, tune in and listen to KFI AM 640 KHz from 7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. for all the current news of importance and Matt's take on the culture war and gossip and rumor in the entertainment industry and the human condition generally.
* * *
ENFORCEMENT YES, AMNESTY NO
"Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr. (R-Wis.), the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, said he will introduce legislation on Tuesday addressing 'some of the problems' with the U.S. immigration system. . . . Sensenbrenner said his proposal will focus on prevention, including stronger border security and a 'serious interior immigration enforcement effort.' . . . Although Sensenbrenner said he supports the establishment of a guest worker program (which President Bush has recommended), his bill will not include such a provision. Sensenbrenner said that's because there is no clear consensus on what such a program should look like."- CNS News, 12/6/05
BUSH IS NOT SERIOUS ABOUT CUTTING SPENDING
"George Bush is the biggest-spending president of the past 40 years, surpassing even Lyndon Johnson and his 'Great Society' spending spree, a new report by the Cato Institute reveals. The increase in discretionary spending - that is, all nonentitlement programs - in Bush's first term was 48.5 percent. That's higher than LBJ's 48.3 percent, and more than twice as large as the increase during Bill Clinton's entire two terms, 21.6 percent."- NewsMax.com, 12/4/05
* * *
GILCHRIST WINS THE ELECTION-DAY VOTES
-- BUT LOSES BIG IN THE ABSENTEE BALLOTING
Jim Gilchrist, cofounder of the Minuteman border-watch project and candidate in a special election for California's 48th congressional district seat, pulled in an impressive 25% of the vote as a third-party candidate against his two major-party adversaries. Republican John Campbell won by receiving a total of 41,450 votes (44.7% of the total), 30,985 of which were cast by absentee ballot, while only 10,555 votes were cast on election day. Democrat Steve Young, who came in second, received a total of 25,926 votes, 14,697 of which were cast by absentee ballot, and 11,229 were cast on election day. American Independent Party candidate Jim Gilchrist received a total of 23,237 votes, 10,944 of which were cast by absentee ballot, and 12,293 were cast on election day.
Considering the opposition from establishment forces and the difficulties of third parties in our political system, this is definitely a significant achievement. It's even more significant when you consider the fact that Gilchrist ran on one issue only: illegal immigration. I am not even sure what his positions on other issues are, and am a little afraid to find out, thinking he may turn out to be more of a leftish populist than a hard-core conservative. At any rate, he refrained from discussing his views on other issues during the campaign.
Two lessons should have been learned before this election: 1) Don't ignore the absentee voters, who are often the major part of the electorate these days. Two-thirds of the total votes had already been cast before election day. Campbell had already racked up over 30,000 of them -- about three times the number of votes he got on the day of the election. Gilchrist had already lost the election a month before election day because the absentee voters had already made up their minds to vote for Campbell over Gilchrist. Perhaps if they had waited to vote in person on election day, they would have been exposed to Gilchrist's commercials, aired late in the campaign, and might have changed their minds and voted for Gilchrist instead; but, they voted absentee several weeks prior to election day before seeing or hearing those Gilchrist campaign spots -- and I don't blame them. We may never know what might have been, but the responsibility goes to Gilchrist and the Gilchrist campaign strategists who ignored good advice from campaign pros to work on the absentee voters early on instead of concentrating the bulk of their funds the last week or two of the campaign.
2) Like it or not, political participation in elections is very important, especially when there is a small turnout. It is not true, as some anarchists like to believe, that if you just ignore politics, it will go away and leave you alone. "What if they held an election and nobody came?" "Don't vote -- it just encourages them!" Well, in the real world, it doesn't matter how small the turnout, the results are accepted and the winner takes his office. As distasteful as politics is to many of us, if we abandon the field to our enemies, they will seize the levers of power over us all -- one of the reasons that we most hate politics and Big Government in the first place. If we are to keep the ultra-statist Left from gaining even more power in our society and destroying what freedoms we have left, we have no choice but to participate in political elections in self-defense.
Bottom line: Yes, Jim Gilchrist made a good enough showing in this runoff election that the Republican establishment knows they will ignore the illegal immigration issue at their political peril. He "sent 'em a message" -- but it would have been a much louder one if he had actually won, of course.
JIM GILCHRIST OUTDOES RIVALS ON ELECTION DAY!
CANDIDATE TOTAL VOTES ABSENTEE VOTES ELECTION DAY VOTES
CAMPBELL (R) 41,450 44.7% 30,985 10,555
YOUNG (D) 25,926 28.0% 14,697 11,229
GILCHRIST (AIP) 23,237 25.1% 10.944 12,293
DECEMBER 7, 2005
Jamie Gorelick: My 'Wall' Still in Place -- NewsMax.com
Gorelick and her "wall" were a major part of the problem leading to what happened on 9/11 and the Able Danger scandal,
Israel Readies Forces for Strike on Nuclear Iran -- London Times
Let's hope the Israelis don't telegraph their punches the way Bush did to Saddam for over a year. They should just do it, not announce it beforehand.
Military's Information War Is Vast and Often Secretive -- New York Times
This has always been a necessary and important part of the fog of war. As to the details discussed here, one must be on guard because 1) it comes from the New York Times, a pro-Democrat anti-Bush paper, and 2) the writer may be relying on leaks or rumors from current or former employees of the CIA or State Department, and it is always good to question any such sources and leaks because of the partisan political nature of the motives behind them. Disgruntled Democrats and socialists from within CIA and State have been using anonymous leaks to their allies in the media to embarrass Bush and undermine the administration's efforts to establish a "beachhead" of democracy and freedom in the Middle East. These leaks may or may not be accurate -- as we are finding out about some of the claims of Joe Wilson, husband of CIA analyst Valerie Plame.
* * *
WEAK LEADERSHIP OF THE GOP
Needed: Principled Integrity versus Squishy Amoral Pragmatism
It's My Party
Why are Republican leaders governing like Democrats?
BY DICK ARMEY
Sunday, December 4, 2005 Opinion Journal
In all my years in politics, I've never sensed such anger and frustration from our volunteers--those who do the hard work of door-to-door mobilization that Republican candidates depend on to get elected. Across the nation, wherever I go to speak with them, their refrain is the same: "I can't tell a dime's worth of difference between Republicans and Democrats." Our base rightly expects Republicans to govern by the principles--lower taxes, less government and more freedom--that got them elected. Today, with Republicans controlling both the legislative and executive branches of the federal government, there is a widening credibility gap between their political rhetoric and their public policies.
What will happen to Republicans if these freedom-loving, grassroots activists don't show up for work next fall? The elections earlier this month may be an indication of the answer.
Colorado's Gov. Bill Owens, once the future presidential nominee of choice among smaller-government conservatives, teamed up with liberal Democrats in the Legislature to expand the state budget by billions of dollars and grab taxpayers' refunds for years to come. The Democratic big spenders got what they wanted, but it has left the Republican Party fractured and effectively ended Gov. Owens's future as a Republican leader. Here is one of Armey's Axioms: Make a deal with the devil and you're the junior partner.
At the national level, where President Bush and the Republican-controlled Congress are presiding over the largest expansion of government since LBJ's Great Society, things are no better. Our political base expects elected leaders to cut both tax rates and spending, because they know that the real tax burden is reflected in the overall size of government.
Instead, we have embarrassing spectacles like the 2005 highway bill. Costing $295 billion, it is 35% larger than the last transportation bill, fueled by 6,371 earmarks doled out to favored political constituencies. By comparison, the 1987 highway bill was vetoed by Ronald Reagan for containing relatively few (152) earmarks. Overall, even excluding defense and homeland security spending, the growth rate of discretionary spending adjusted for inflation is at a 40-year high.
All of our leaders are complicit in this spending spree. President Bush has yet to veto a single spending bill. The House leadership refuses to rein in appropriators, claiming, as one of them preposterously put it, that "there is simply no fat left to cut in the federal budget."
I have always believed that good policy is good politics for Republicans. Reagan won against an incumbent president in 1980, declaring in his first inaugural address that "government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem." I beat an incumbent Democrat in 1984, against the dire predications of my party's political experts, on an aggressive agenda of smaller government and Social Security reform based on large personal retirement accounts. In 1994, Republicans took control of the House for the first time in 40 years, running on the Contract with America, a clearly articulated public policy agenda based on smaller, smarter government.
Conversely, when we let politics define our agenda, we get in trouble. The highway bill is one example in which the criterion of choice was politics. An even better example was 2003's expansion of Medicare to cover prescription drugs. This was an explicitly political effort to take health care "off the table" for the 2004 elections. I said at that time that the proposed legislation was "a case where bad politics has produced a bad policy proposal." I predicted that the deal was "bad news for senior citizens and possibly even worse political news for the Republican Party." Here is another one of Armey's Axioms: You can't get your finger on the problem if you've got it in the wind.
Bad policy is bad politics. The 2003 expansion of Medicare enacted by Republicans has dramatically increased the financial pressures on an already broken program, and it has become a political albatross around the necks of Republicans who voted for it.
As the party of smaller government, Republicans will always have a more difficult job governing than Democrats do. Government naturally wants to expand. It is always easier for politicians when both you and your political base truly believe that there is a new government program to solve any problem, real or imagined. We will always have to work harder and be more entrepreneurial than our political opponents when it comes to implementing reforms.
To succeed in the future, the Republican Party must get back to basics. We need, in effect, another Republican takeover of Congress, reaffirming a commitment to less government, lower taxes and more freedom. As in 1994, this revolution will be driven by the Young Turks of the party--the brave backbenchers more inspired by Reagan than the possibility of a glowing editorial on the pages of the New York Times. Indeed, this is already happening.
A serious effort to slow the growth of the federal budget is being driven by a small group of House Republicans led by Reps. Mike Pence, Jeff Flake and Jeb Hensarling. Against their own leadership's wishes, this brave group and others from the Republican Study Committee gathered outside the Cannon House office building in September to kick off "Operation Offset," a modest proposal to pay for the extraordinary costs associated with Hurricane Katrina with savings from other parts of the budget. Top on the list: cuts in highway pork and a suspension of the soon-to-be-implemented expansion of Medicare.
It would have been easier not to have overspent in the first place, but the Republican Congress must reestablish its credibility as the party of spending restraint and fiscal responsibility.
Likewise, the Republican Congress must make the most important elements of the Bush tax cuts permanent, particularly repeal of the death tax, lower income tax rates and dividend tax relief. These proposals deserve substantial credit for the current strength of the American economy. Success would represent real steps toward our ultimate goal of tax reform and a simple, fair and flat income tax.
While prospects for retirement security seem unlikely before 2006, I'm counting on able legislative entrepreneurs like Sen. Jim DeMint to drag his colleagues, kicking and screaming, into a serious, adult debate about the most important policy challenge facing our generation. Personally, I've never quite understood the bed-wetters' fears when it comes to personal retirement accounts. How could you possibly lose by saving future retirees--our children and grandchildren--from another broken government promise?
None of this will be easy. The good news for Republicans willing to do this heavy lifting is that the "ideas" of the left are bankrupt. Notice that the brightest liberal politicians, like Hillary Clinton, always move toward our policy ground as they prepare to run for national office. Why would Republicans want to act like them when they act like us in order to win?
One final Armey Axiom: When we act like us, we win. When we act like them, we lose.
Mr. Armey, House majority leader from 1995 to 2003, is chairman of FreedomWorks, a national grassroots advocacy organization.
* * *
GOP in Revolt Against Schwarzenegger
He Acts Like a Democrat After Special Election Defeat
California Republicans are in open revolt against Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger over his hiring of a Democratic operative as his new chief of staff.
And one leading state GOP official is touting actor Mel Gibson as a possible Republican primary challenger to Schwarzenegger.
Officials with the California Republican Party are said to be furious with Schwarzenegger and have demanded a private meeting with the governor to complain about his appointment of Susan P. Kennedy, who was a Cabinet secretary during the administration of Gov. Gray Davis.
Schwarzenegger was elected governor after an extraordinary effort succeeded to recall Davis in 2003.
Republicans note that Kennedy was also an abortion-rights activist and Democratic Party executive.
Republican operatives said grass-roots volunteers were so disturbed by the appointment that they were threatening to abandon Schwarzenegger during his re-election bid next year, according to the Los Angeles Times.
The Times said the movement to draft Mel Gibson to run against Schwarzenegger in the Republican primary next year is due in part because the success of his movie "The Passion of the Christ" could help his chances among religious conservatives.
Gibson "seems to be more consistent with the Republican message" than the governor is, said Mike Spence, president of the California Republican Assembly, a grass-roots organization separate from the state party.
GOP board member Keith Carlson told the Sacramento Bee: "The spirit of the recall was to oust Davis and his cronies, and now one of his cronies is back."
Schwarzenegger agreed to a face-to-face meeting with Republican Party officials next week.
Top GOP officials are particularly worried about Kennedy getting inside information about their statewide election efforts next year, the Times reports.
"What does it mean to have a chief of staff from the other party during a year of re-election?" asked state Republican Party Chairman Duf Sundheim.
"This is one of the reasons we wanted to sit down, to express these concerns."
The board of directors of the California Republican Party demanded the private meeting with Schwarzenegger because it "strongly disagrees" with Kennedy's appointment, according to an e-mail sent out Monday. It would be the first-ever meeting of the Republican board and Schwarzenegger over a policy dispute.
GOP Assemblyman Ray Haynes said the hiring of Kennedy has convinced him to rescind his support for the governor.
"I spent a lot of time trying to explain what the governor has said and defended it," he told the Times.
"I gave him the benefit of the doubt and told people he was going to do the right thing. I am not going to do that anymore."
Other Calif. Republican operatives say the appointment of Kennedy is a purposeful move to the left to win re-election in 2006 and demonstrates that his wife Maria Shriver, a Democrat, is in operational control of her husband's political future.
NOVEMBER 27, 2005
A TURNING POINT TECHNOLOGY IN THE IRAQ WAR?
Excerpted from National
and reported by the Pasadena Pundit
"THE ROCK" SURVIVES IED BLAST [W. Thomas Smith Jr.]
I've just learned that during an operation near Baghdad, this morning, one of our armored vehicles - a brand new one unofficially referred to as "The Rock" - was hit by an IED. The vehicle sustained no major damage, and - best of all - ZERO injuries were suffered by passengers or crew.
I first reported on "The Rock" earlier this month at NavySEALs.com and elsewhere. It is being manufactured by Kuwait-based Granite Global Services which was founded in the spring of 2004 by SEAL Reservist Chris Berman, then-working for Blackwater Security. Berman started the company after four of his Blackwater buddies were ambushed and killed in Fallajuh. After escorting all four bodies home, Berman decided to build a heavily armored, ultra-fast (the thing can cruise at 80 mph), gun-bristling, urban-warfare vehicle that would save passenger lives in combat. His first truck rolled off the line in June. It's been shot at a lot, but no ball-round ammunition can penetrate its armor. Today it was hit by an IED for the first time, and Berman emailed me saying, "I must brag when it is this good."
Senior Propagandist, Weapons Buyer for Insurgents is Captured -- Stars & Stripes
This sounds very encouraging!
Political Musical Chairs is Expensive for Taxpayers by Elliott Graham
Elect Jim Gilchrist to Congress!
Schwarzenegger Mulls Clemency for Multimurderer and Gang Founder
Apparently Arnold wants to be a one-term governor. It's high time Tookie was terminated.
Boston Eschews Christmas, Goes for Politically Correct "Holiday Tree" Instead Oh, my -- aren't those East Coast liberals fashionable?
No Hype Needed: Saddam, al-Qaida Linked
By Victor Davis Hanson
As American casualties mount in Iraq, politicians at home now fight over who said what and when about weapons of mass destruction and the need for going to war. One of the most frequent charges is that President Bush hyped a non-existent link between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaida — and that as a result, we diverted our efforts from finishing off the real terrorists to start a new and costly war to replace a secular dictator.
This charge is false for several reasons — and illogical for even more. Almost every responsible U.S. government body had long warned about Saddam's links to al-Qaida terrorists. In 1998, for example, when the Clinton Justice Department indicted bin Laden, the writ read: "In addition, al-Qaida reached an understanding with the Government of Iraq that al-Qaida would not work against that government and that on particular projects, specifically including weapons development, al-Qaida would work cooperatively with the Government of Iraq."
Then in October 2002, George Tenet, the Clinton-appointed CIA director, warned the Senate in similar terms: "We have solid reporting of senior-level contacts between Iraq and al-Qaida going back a decade." Seventy-seven senators apparently agreed — including a majority of Democrats — and cited just that connection a few days later as a cause to go to war against Saddam: " ... Whereas members of al-Qaida, an organization bearing responsibility for attacks on the United States, its citizens, and interests, including the attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, are known to be in Iraq."
The bipartisan consensus about this unholy alliance was not based on intriguing but unconfirmed rumors of meetings between Saddam's intelligence agents and al-Qaida operatives such as Sept. 11 hijacker Mohamed Atta. Nor did the senators or the president ever claim that Saddam himself planned the Sept. 11 attacks. Instead, the Justice Department, the Senate and two administrations were alarmed by terrorist groups like Ansar al-Islam, an al-Qaida affiliate that established bases in Iraqi Kurdistan.
More importantly, one of the masterminds of the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center, Abdul Rahman Yasin, fled to Baghdad to find sanctuary with Saddam after the attack. And after the U.S.'s successful war against the Taliban, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the present murderous al-Qaida leader in Iraq, reportedly escaped from Afghanistan to gain a reprieve from Saddam.
All of this is understandable since Saddam had a long history of promoting and sheltering anti-Western terrorists. That's why both Abu Nidal and Abu Abbas — terrorist banes of the 1970s and 1980s — were in Baghdad prior to the U.S. invasion and why the families of West Bank suicide bombers were given $25,000 rewards by the Iraqi government.
Saddam worried little over the agendas of these diverse terrorist groups, only that they shared his own generic hatred of Western governments. This kind of support from leaders such as Saddam has proven crucial to radical, violent Islamicists' efforts.
After Sept. 11, it became clear that these enemies can only resort to terrorism to weaken American resolve and gain concessions — and can't even do that without the clandestine help of illegitimate regimes (from Saddam in Iraq to the Taliban in Afghanistan, the theocracy in Iran, Bashar Assad in Syria and others) who provide money and sanctuary while denying culpability.
Middle Eastern terrorists and tyrants feed on one another. The Saddams and Assads of the region — and to a less extent the Saudi royal family and the Mubarak dynasty — deflected popular anger over their own failures onto the United States by allowing terrorists to scapegoat the Americans.
Yet, for a quarter-century, oil, professed anti-communism and loud promises to "fight terror" earned various reprieves from the West for these dictatorships, who were deathly afraid that one day America might catch on and do something other than shoot a cruise missile at enemies while sternly lecturing "friends."
That day came after Sept. 11. To end the old pathology, we took out the Taliban and Saddam Hussein, pressured the Syrians to leave Lebanon, encouraged Lebanese democracy, hectored the Egyptians about elections, told Libya's Moammar Gaddafi to come clean about his nuclear plans, and risked oil supplies by jawboning the Persian Gulf monarchies to liberalize.
The theory behind all these messy and often caricatured efforts was not the desire for endless war — we removed by force only the two worst regimes, in Afghanistan and Iraq — but to allow Middle Easterners a third alternative between Islamic radicalism and secular dictatorship. No wonder that wherever there are elections in the Middle East — Afghanistan and Iraq — legitimate governments there have the moral authority and the desire to fight Islamic terrorism.
Americans can blame one another all we want over the cost in lives and treasure in Iraq. But the irony is that not long ago everyone from Bill Clinton to George Bush, senators, CIA directors and federal prosecutors all agreed that Saddam had offered assistance to al-Qaida, the organization that murdered 3,000 Americans. That was one of the many reasons we went into Iraq, why Zarqawi and ex-Baathists side-by-side now attack American soldiers — and why an elected Iraqi government is fighting with us.
Our First Thanksgiving by Sartell Prentice, Jr.
* * *
The Real Meaning of Thanksgiving
by Joseph Farah
excerpted from World Net DailyWhen the Pilgrims landed in the New World, they found a cold, rocky, barren, desolate wilderness. There were no friends to greet them, Bradford wrote. No houses to shelter them. No inns where they could refresh themselves. During the first winter, half the Pilgrims died of sickness or exposure --including Bradford's wife. Though life improved for the Pilgrims when spring came, they did not really prosper. Why? Once again, the textbooks don't tell the story, but Bradford's own journal does. The reason they didn't succeed initially is because they were practicing an early form of socialism.
The original contract the Pilgrims had with their merchant-sponsors in London called for everything they produced to go into a common store. Each member of the community was entitled to one common share. All of the land they cleared and the houses they built belonged to the community. Bradford, as governor, recognized the inherent problem with this collectivist system.
"The experience that was had in this common course and condition, tried sundry years ... that by taking away property, and bringing community into common wealth, would make them happy and flourishing -- as if they were wiser than God," Bradford wrote. "For this community (so far as it was) was found to breed much confusion and discontent, and retard much employment that would have been to their benefit and comfort. For young men that were most able and fit for labor and service did repine that they should spend their time and strength to work for other men's wives and children without any recompense ... that was thought injustice."
What a surprise! Even back then people did not want to work without incentive. Bradford decided to assign a plot of land to each family to work and manage, thus turning loose the power of free enterprise. What was the result?
"This had very good success," wrote Bradford, "for it made all hands industrious, so as much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been."
As a result, the Pilgrims soon found they had more food than they could eat themselves. They set up trading posts and exchanged goods with the Indians. The profits allowed them to pay off their debts to the merchants in London much faster than expected. The success of the Plymouth colony thus attracted more Europeans and set off what we call the "Great Puritan Migration."
House Republicans Turn Tables on "Anti-War" Dems --
Making Them Put Up or Shut Up! -- The Loft
Armed Standoff on Rio Grande -- FreeRepublic.com news and posts
The border war is heating up.
Help Wanted: Must Not be White or Male - World Net Daily
Federal department official bans Caucasians!
Iraqi Kurds Thank Americans in Ad Campaign
Woodward Denies that Cheney was Source of Plame CIA Leak
The Plame "leak" gambit is backfiring on the Democrats . . .
PROF. WALTER E. WILLIAMS AGAIN HOSTS TALK SHOW
FOR VACATIONING RUSH"Black by popular demand!" While the great El Rushbo is away on vacation, real economist and nationally syndicated columnist Walter Williams returned to the EIB microphone to host his three-hour radio program -- the most widely listened to talk radio show in the world.
Rush's listening audience varies between 18 million to 24 million people -- and Walter Williams is probably his most popular guest host. Whenever Dr. Williams takes over for Rush, there can be little doubt that it constitutes the most important pro-freedom event in the country as more people are exposed to free market and constitutional libertarian ideas than during any other three-hour period.
As it was Open Line Friday, topics addressed were diverse and included such issues as the liberation of Iraq and military strategy (Williams vehemently disagrees that it is strategically wise to telegraph one's punches to the enemy by setting any deadlines for troop withdrawal, as naively suggested by many leading Democrats and even some of his fellow libertarians); prudent tactics to fight the jihadists; how to avoid poverty; the folly of taxing windfall oil and gas prices and profits; how to buy anniversary and Christmas gifts for your wife; and much, much more.
During the second hour, Williams conducted a revealing interview with conservative Tony Blankley about his new book The West's Last Chance -- which is an urgently needed wake-up call for the West to recognize the dangers it faces from radical Islam.
The bionic broadcaster returns from his vacation on Monday.
Ammunition for Poverty Pimps by Walter Williams
House Passes Budget-Cut Bill by Narrow Margin
Repub "moderates" (along with Democrats) almost kill the effort.
NOVEMBER 13, 2005
BUSH FINALLY CONDEMNS LEFT'S ATTEMPTS
TO REWRITE HISTORY
But is it too little, too late?President Bush, Vice President Cheney, and Defense Secretary Rumsfeld are finally sounding like they are starting to fight back against the critics of the War in Iraq who have been insisting that there never were WMDs in Iraq and that Bush manufactured intelligence and lied to get us into war, etc. But is it a case of too little, too late?
The Democrats know that -- given the short memories and limited attention span of the American people -- if they can repeat a lie enough times on TV, many folks will accept it as true. This is why the liberal Democrats have been fighting so hard to keep their virtual monopoly in the television networks by attacking Internet web analysts and radio talk shows. Many of the same Democrat politicians who oppose the war in Iraq these days, because they perceive it as unpopular now and as a way to undermine the Bush Administration for their own political reasons, are the same officials who voted for it four years ago and who made the same assessment of Saddam Hussein that the Bush Administration used (in part) as a reason for using military force to topple his regime. But unless the Bush Administration aggressively campaigns to remind the American people of this and other relevant facts, the Democrat Party, dominated by the Far Left, will succeed in rewriting history.
Was it really a case of faulty intelligence from an incompetent CIA (dominated by Clinton Democrat holdovers)? Or was it more a case of faulty, incompetent journalists in the pro-Democrat partisan news media -- from the Washington Post, New York Times, and L.A. Times to the old-line Establishment liberal television networks -- who were far more interested in trying to frame Bush and Cheney as bad guys than they were in digging out the facts (the first responsibility of good journalists)? I think the answer is obvious. And so the propaganda war for the minds of the American people continues from the Left -- and Bush had better try to counteract it instead of adhering to the "New Tone" (not to criticize Clinton or tell the American people what the previous administration had done to our national security) which he imposed on his Cabinet at the start of his presidency. By letting his political enemies make claims and charges without responding to them, he gave people the impression that those claims and charges must be true. By keeping George Tenet and other Clinton appointees in office instead of replacing them with people loyal to himself, Bush set himself up for political sabotage from within the government. The Wilson/Plame fiasco is only one consequence of Bush's policy of "turn the other cheek" -- meekly bending over to appease Clinton and the Senate Democrats.
President's Veterans Day Speech
Bush Fights Back on WMD Claims -- NewsMax
Vice President's Speech at the Frontiers of Freedom Institute
Bush Takes Aim At Democrat Duplicity by Rush Limbaugh
Fair Weather War Supporters Forget Their Own History -- Victor D. Hanson
Moderate RINOs Undermine GOP -- Rush Limbaugh
* * *
MORE ON THE RESULTS OF
CALIFORNIA SPECIAL ELECTION
How the Liars Won by John Ziegler
Live by the Ballot, Die by the Ballot by Debra Saunders
Today is supposed to be the day that Judge Dale will release some of the previously suppressed information held by the Federal Government about the prior knowledge and involvement of BATF and FBI personnel in the Oklahoma City bombing which killed 168 people and wounded many others on April 19,1995. But my bet is that the coverup will continue.
This is part of a court filing by attorney Jesse Trentadue who wants the FBI and other government agencies involved to provide an un-blacked-out 1995 memo and a related report about the apparent torture and murder of his brother (who had been convicted of bank robbery) while in prison two days after the bombing in Oklahoma City. Kenneth Trentadue, 44, was being held on an alleged parole violation in a federal prison in Oklahoma City when guards found him dead on Aug. 21, 1995, hanging from a noose made of torn bed sheets. His family insists he was killed and contend correctional officials destroyed evidence; authorities have denied the allegations and contend he committed suicide. However, autopsy photographs of the body confirm burn marks and other signs of torture.
Trentadue has gathered evidence that his brother was mistaken for one of Tim McVeigh's alleged accomplice in the bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City -- and that federal agents, believing that they had Richard Lee Guthrie in their custody, went too far in attempting to force him to talk, using torture and finally killing him to cover up what they had done.
In May of this year, federal district judge Dale Kimball of Salt Lake City ordered the FBI's Oklahoma City office to find and turn over the unedited documents in the Oklahoma City bombing case to attorney Jesse Trentadue who sued the FBI and believes the documents could shed light on his brother's death. The FBI dragged its feet, claiming the document could not be located. On Aug. 19, Congressman Dana Rohrabacher sent a terse request to the agency, "I ask that you comply with Judge Kimball's order and not make attempts to block his ruling by delay tactics or other judicial challenges. Further attempts by your agency to obstruct this case will only undermine the FBI's credibility in the eyes of the public." The California congressman has expressed an interest in the case and in holding hearings to probe the FBI's handling of that investigation and apparent coverup.
FBI agents reportedly had asked Judge Kimball to dismiss Trentadue's suit, but he refused. Supposedly, copies of the unredacted documents have been given to Judge Kimball and he is supposed to transfer them today to Trentadue. We shall wait and see.
Another Suicide or Another Cover-up? by Sarah Foster
Lawyer makes the case that his Brother was tortured, murdered in federal prison.
Congressman to FBI: Turn over Documents by J.D. Cash, McCurtain Daily Gazette
Rohrabacher hopes feds won't attempt to delay investigation into attack
The Trentadue Case: A Coverup That Won’t Stay Coveredby Paul Craig Roberts
* * *
Windfall Profits by Walter Williams
Going After Profits by Bruce Bartlett
A Manifesto of Lies by David Limbaugh
San Francisco Votes for Handgun Ban
Why don't we just cede the San Francisco/Oakland area to France -- or North Korea? When peaceful adult citizens are not allowed to keep and bear arms for their protection, violent crime tends to go up.
Happy 230th Birthday to U.S. Marine Corps!
SPECIAL ELECTION CONFIRMS
CALIFORNIA'S CONTINUED DOWNWARD SLIDE
It looks like hundreds of millions of dollars worth of lying, negative TV and newspaper ads by the corrupt public employee unions paid off for them. None of the reform propositions passed! Too many people were too stupid and bought into those union commercials on TV which vilified Schwarzenegger and misrepresented the propositions to the people. Is it any wonder we live in a State where the two U.S. senators are Barbara Boxer and Diane Feinstein? The only satisfaction we have, as far as I can see, is that the unions probably depleted their war chests as the cost of their victory over Schwarzenegger's attempts to get those reforms passed. Considering all the dues they have spent to stop these reforms, we can expect the union bosses to demand major hikes in state spending to fatten their vested interests.
The propositions sought to give the governor authority to make mid-year budget cuts, take away the power of legislators to draw their own political districts (which gives them virtual permanent incumbencies), require public employee unions to get the permission of their members before using their dues for political advertising, and extend the period for teachers to obtain "tenure" from two to five years in order to help weed out the poor instructors.
Governor Arnold's wife Maria, a socialistic Democrat from the infamous Kennedy klan, was conspicuous by her absence in his campaign in favor of the reform propositions, lending credence to the reasonable suspicion that she wanted them to fail. But the pro-reform campaign, led by the governor, was poorly done and was outspent several times over by the power-thirsty teachers union and the other public employee unions.
The result of this election just means that the State of California will continue to be under the control of greedy, corrupt government employee union bosses, far-left politicians, anti-industrial, anti-energy environmentalist kooks, the lawyer class, and various powerful special-interest groups, especially the California Teachers Association. It is clear to me that the state cannot continue to spend more than it takes in indefinitely. Taxes and regulations have already been responsible for many businesses and families moving away from California to other states, despite the favorable climate here. As the revenue base begins to shrink in the next few years, it will be harder and harder for politicians to find money to pay for all the spending, including the extravagant pensions and benefits of the public employees here. Perhaps California voters will wake up to the necessity of passing these and other reforms in the future when the next crisis hits. But that is probably what it will take -- a fiscal crisis that affects the average person -- before people will smarten up and no longer be led by the nose by deceitful campaign ads on TV and in the newspapers paid for by hundreds of millions of dollars in union dues.
CALIFORNIA PROPOSITIONS VOTED ON TODAY
Will the corrupt public employee unions, with the hundreds of millions of dollars they have spent on lying ads, be able to fool enough of California's voters to keep Gov. Schwarzennegger's reform package -- Propositions 74, 75, 76, and 77 -- from passing? I hope not, but it looks like they will.
The Barbarians at the Gates of Paris by Thomas Sowell
European countries especially have thrown their doors open to a large influx of Moslem immigrants who have no intention of becoming part of the cultures of the countries to which they immigrate but to recreate their own cultures in those countries. In the name of tolerance, these countries have imported intolerance, of which growing antisemitism in Europe is just one example. In the name of respecting all cultures, Western nations have welcomed people who respect neither the cultures nor the rights of the population among whom they have settled.
Diversity and Multiculturalism: The New Racism by Michael Berliner
"Ethnic diversity" is the highest priority of a university education today, the politically correct educational establishment states, pointing to its race, class and gender standards for hiring and promoting faculty, admitting and housing students, and even choosing the content of courses. While claiming that its primary goal is to eradicate racism, the "diversity" movement is not imparting knowledge to students or helping them to develop the skill of reasoning, but promoting the ideas of racism instead.
Lewis Libby: A Fishing License Indictment by Thomas Sowell
All too often the authorization of an investigation is essentially a fishing license to enable the prosecutor to find something to prosecute, whether or not he can get evidence to prosecute the crime he was supposed to be investigating.
The Inside Scoop on the Che Guevara T-Shirt by Humberto Fontova
* * *
Get Ready for 2006 now!
Republican Candidate Running Against Socialist Bernie Sander
THE JIHADIST CRUSADE
AGAINST WESTERN CIVILIZATION
Why Paris is Burning by AMIR TAHERI
Any talk implying approval of racial segregation or "White separatism" or the superiority of "White culture" is, of course, off-limits in today's society because people are afraid of being called bigots by the "politically correct" Liberal-Left Thought Police. Yet, I see very little in the way of negative sanctions in the left-wing press against those such as Farakhan who whip up Black anti-White racism or those who support Moslem supremacist hatred against Western culture in general and America in particular.
While there are many Americans who refuse to face the realities of the militant hateful bigotry of the Left which blames all the evils in the world on American capitalism and White middle-class "greed" (pursuit of happiness), the riots and violent rampages going on in France now by unassimilated Moslem separatists should be a wake-up call for those who heretofore have tried to ignore philosophy, religion, culture, and ethnicity as supposedly unimportant factors in the health of a civilized society. Will the irrational, parasitic, and criminally inclined elements of society continue to be excused and largely tolerated while the more rational, civilized, and decent peoples and cultures are expected to sacrifice themselves like Eloi to Morlocks? The pro-reason, pro-morality, pro-decency, pro-capitalist, pro-American backlash is coming. It is a matter of "when" rather than "if" as it continues to build beneath the surface of human events despite the most frantic efforts of the Liberal Establishment to suppress it or even to acknowledge it.
More People Moving Out of California than Moving In -- NY Times
Beijing is preparing to wage war against the United States and has long considered itself to be in a "cold war" against America. Their spies got our nuclear warhead secrets during the lax-security days of the Clinton Administration. Now, the inept Bush team has also let extremely valuable military secrets slip through its clumsy fingers. The damage is serious. This is just the latest public revelation in Red China's long history of espionage against the U.S., which seems to be accelerating. Clearly the Chinese military is conducting covert operations to obtain the latest classified U.S. military technologies. Our counter-espionage agencies have some explaining to do. Some heads ought to roll. But, given his past performance, Bush will probably sit on his hands and continue to let Democrat holdovers stay.
Four Arrests Linked to Chinese Spy Ring by Bill Gertz
Red Chinese Military Threat & Technology Transfers
DUNCAN HUNTER PROPOSES
FOR BORDER CONTROL
3:26 p.m. November 2, 2005
WASHINGTON – A leading House Republican wants to build a fence along the entire 2,000-mile U.S.-Mexico border, a plan that could cost billions of dollars and that critics say would do little to stop illegal immigration.
Rep. Duncan Hunter of San Diego, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, planned to announce legislation Thursday to create a two-layer reinforced fence with lighting and sensors from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, a 100-yard border zone to the north of the barriers, and 25 new ports of entry.
Currently, most of the westernmost 14-mile stretch of the border is lined with parallel fencing and there's secure fencing at other vulnerable points, but long stretches of the border are protected only by patchy barbed wire or nothing at all.
"Illegal aliens continue to funnel directly into many of our local communities and adversely impact our way of life by overwhelming our schools, inundating our health care system and, most concerning, threatening our safety," said Hunter, who was introducing the bill with Rep. Virgil Goode, R-Va . He said building a fence and enforcing immigration laws could reverse the trends.
A conservative group called Let Freedom Ring that is promoting a border fence estimates it would cost about $8 billion.
The plan is controversial. Republican Gov. Bill Owens of Colorado recently announced his support, but Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, has said he doesn't think a fence would stop illegal immigration.
Groups including National Council of La Raza, the largest U.S.-based Hispanic advocacy group, oppose a fence.
"It doesn't really deal with why people are migrating or why our economy is so dependent on their labor," said Cecilia Munoz, the group's vice president of policy. "The resourcefulness of people on both sides of the border is likely to be greater than a fence."
Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, planned to join Hunter at his news conference Thursday to support the idea.
"The U.S. and Mexico, if they're going to remain friends they're going to need good fences," Stein said.
Hunter's bill contains other immigration reforms including authorizing 10,000 new Border Patrol officers, empowering local police to enforce immigration laws and increasing penalties for hiring illegal immigrants.
Hunter is a leading opponent of illegal immigration who earlier this year pushed the Bush administration to commit to fortifying the westernmost 3½ miles of the border, over the objections of environmentalists, the California Coastal Commission and the local Democratic congressman.
Italy Blames France for Phony Documentation of Niger Uranium Claim
Niger Document Forger in Pay of France -- The American Thinker
It looks as if Chirac -- up to his keester in the oil-for-food Iraq scandal -- was trying to set Bush up by having obviously forged documents created to cast doubt on his initial claims that Saddam tried to buy "yellow cake" uranium. But many questions remain. Were Democrat partisans within the CIA and Department of State also involved? Since "Scooter" Libby has pleaded not guilty to the charges leveled against him by Fitzgerald, the jury trial may be very interesting -- especially if Joe Wilson and/or his wife are called in for questioning (something Fitzgerald curiously has not done during his grand jury investigation).
This whole Plamegate thing could easily backfire and blow up in the Democrats' faces despite attempts by the establishment media clique to cover up for Wilson.
Reid Invokes Rule 21, Calls Senate into Closed Session
Harry Reid and the sinister Senate Democrats can stamp their feet and threaten to hold their breath until they turn blue in the face all they want, but their antics of desperation won't change reality. Investigations concerning pre-war intelligence and the claim that "Bush lied about WMDs" have already been conducted and have exonerated Bush from those charges. At most, this latest stunt by Reid is only a delaying tactic. Now if only the Senate Republican majority had a real leader . . . .
THE CORRUPT UNITED STATES SENATE
"Recently, a clash between Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska and Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma brought the Senate to a rare moment of clarity.
"Coburn, wanting to bring some semblance of balance to federal spending, took the occasion of increased spending for disaster relief to urge cutting some recently approved pork-barrel spending. In particular, he wanted to cut the two Alaskan 'bridges to nowhere' that I and others have identified as the very epitome of waste.
"Stevens angrily told his freshman colleague that, if the Senate killed his bridges, he would resign and 'be taken out of here on a stretcher.' The 81-year-old Senator, well-ensconced on the Transportation Committee, said that Coburn's mere suggestion was 'an offense, a threat to every person in my state.'
"So, after the Senate regained composure, it voted against Coburn's measure, 82 to 15. Quite a defeat for Coburn. And for America. And common sense. Those bridges are wastes of federal dollars. If Alaska can't fund them, then they shouldn't be funded."
- Paul Jacob of Americans for Limited Government
Riots Spread Across France -- Fox News
French Appeasement Results in Muslim Riots -- El Rushbo
Hating Americans Won't Buy You a Pass from Jihadist Rage
Five Al-Qaeda senior members killed in air raid
Whose profits are they anyway? -- Neal Boortz
Leakgate: What about Wilson's Credibility? -- Larry Elder
Musharraf Urges Holy War on Terror
Does Anyone Believe Bill Clinton?-- Joseph Farah
Only the most gullible really believe Bill Clinton's latest self-serving whopper.
Senate Backs Drilling in Alaska Refuge -- NewsMax.com
Finally, after decades of liberal-left obstructionism, is there a glimmer of light at the end of the energy dependence tunnel?
The Libby Indictment:
Much Ado About Little
Yes, "Scooter" Libby was indicted because his testimony apparently had some inaccuracies or contradictions in it about which reporters he spoke to and when -- but no one has yet been indicted, much less convicted, of the crime of "outing" the identity of a covert agent of the CIA. I strongly suspect that no indictments will be forthcoming on that charge. If Fitzgerald really had something substantive to prove that Karl Rove or anyone else in the White House was in violation of that charge -- the original basis for convening the grand jury investigation -- he already would have used it by indicting Rove or others. He has not.
This is not to say that the charges brought against Libby are not serious charges and that he should not be punished if justly convicted of them, but you can be sure that the Democrats are quite disappointed that that's all there is. Fitzgerald could not find evidence of anyone in the White House illegally leaking the identity of a covert CIA operative. The best he could come up with so far is that Libby may have lied to some reporters or that he may have tried to cover up a crime that never occurred.
The Democrat Left's scenario is that the Bush White House deliberately leaked the CIA identify of Joe Wilson's wife as spiteful revenge to get back for Wilson's public claims which contradicted Bush on the "yellow cake" uranium story. That would fit nicely into the Left's conspiratorial talking points that "Bush lied" about WMDs and "yellow cake" in order to get us into war. But, again, there is no evidence for that. What the Democrats and their media people do not want Americans to know is that even though the Bush Administration long ago timidly retracted the claim about Saddam buying "yellow cake" uranium from NIger, British intelligence still stands by their own assessment that agents of Saddam Hussein did meet with officials in Niger to buy uranium.
The real issue which should be under investigation is whether Joe Wilson lied about agents of Saddam Hussein trying to buy "yellow cake" uranium from Niger or from other African regimes. Who was really behind the soliciting of the creation of the phony documents that were originally used by some in the CIA to support the belief that Hussein tried to buy uranium from Niger -- and then later cited by Wilson as evidence that no such attempts to buy uranium ever occurred? Were the false documents created at the behest of anti-Bush partisans to begin with so that they could be used later to discredit one of the reasons Bush gave for sending in troops to liberate Iraq and over-throwing Nazi dictator Saddam Hussein? My conspiracy theory sounds just as plausible as theirs. As investigative journalist Stephen Hayes observes, "In the months before the Iraq war, officials at the CIA engaged in a broad campaign of leaks designed to undermine the Bush administration's case for war. It was a clever hedge." (Weekly Standard, Oct 31, 2005)
Wilson's public claims have already been discredited in Congress as unreliable at best. His oral briefing to Congress added little if any new information about the "yellow cake" controversy, indicating he did little if any real work while on that trip to Niger. Indeed, some parts of his official testimony support the claims about attempts to buy uranium by Saddam's agents. But his subsequent claims to the media and his op ed pieces tell a different story -- insisting that there was no evidence at all and that Bush lied about "yellow cake" uranium. The White House insists that they never received any report at all from Wilson after he returned from his "fact-finding" trip.
Could Wilson and his anti-Bush pro-Democrat wife have been part of an effort to set Bush up for embarrassment on this issue of "yellow cake" uranium? Was the French government -- heavily involved in the Oil-for-Food bribery scam -- also involved in fabricating pre-war intelligence to help the CIA Democrats embarrass the Bush Administration? The hysterical hatred of Bush and Cheney whipped up by DNC hate speech is such that I would not dismiss that possibility at all. We know that anti-Bush partisans within the CIA and the State Department have resented any attempt (weak though it has been) by Bush to clean house in those agencies. But I have not heard the Liberal Establishment media discuss this at all while they strain at the gnat of trying to prove wrongdoing by Republicans and the Bush White House. The media is not interested in Democrat dirty tricks. They are only looking to catch Republicans as real or alleged villains. It is this extreme partisan bigotry on the part of the old, moribund left-leaning media establishment that is causing more and more Americans to turn off their TVs and listen to talk radio instead.
Joe Wilson in a Bind -- Clinton W. Taylor
The White House, the CIA, and the Wilsons -- Stephen F. Hayes
One Good Leak Deserves Another -- Weekly Standard
The Truth about Patrick Fitzgerald and the Democrat Claims that He is Non-Partisan -- NewsMax.com
The Uranium Joe Wilson Didn't Mention -- NewsMax
Bush Backs (Modest) Budget Cuts for Storm Aid -- Washington Times
Irwin Schiff seen promoting
his book, 'The Federal Mafia:
How the Government Illegally
Imposes and Unlawfully
Collects Income Taxes'
Irwin Schiff Found Guilty on All Charges by Corrupt Court
A great patriot for liberty goes down in defeat once again -- and the American taxpayers get mugged some more. Despite this latest court defeat, Schiff is still a hero in my book for his courage and tenacity in sticking his neck out to fight the good fight.
Truth, The Solution to Black America's Moral Poverty by Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson
The truth that the "politically correct" Liberal-Left thought police would suppress is usually swept under the rug by Asians and Caucasians for fear of offending Blacks.
Stupid White Kids Keep "Gansta Rap" Alive observes Anthony Bradley
WithdrawMiers.org Launched -- WorldNetDaily
AN OMINOUS TREND IN CALIFORNIA
Bad Laws Breed Disrespect for Law in General
A growing number of citizens in southern California, especially those who must travel to and from high-crime areas on foot, are having to carry small handguns and other weapons for self-protection. They are doing this despite the current law in this state against such peaceful precautions. If such a law tends to foster a disrespect for laws in general, that cannot be good either for peaceful, productive individuals or society as a whole. Ultimately, an attitude of disrespect for the law could lead to the kind of corrupt political environment that exists in certain foreign countries where people are forced to run their lives and businesses by bribing political satrapies, uniformed highwaymen, and spiteful control freaks and petty tyrants in the bureaucracy at every level just to carry on normal life. For those who are wealthy, this does not pose much of a problem (although even they lose the benefits from innovation and productivity that would otherwise arise in a freer environment), but for those of modest means or the very poor, such a system traps them in a ghetto of futility. The result is a loss of positive incentives for innovation, productivity, and opportunities for people living there.
One of the things that made America a great country was the widespread respect for law among its people. This was built on the fact that, for the most part, the primary purpose of the laws was to protect the lives, liberties, and properties of the peaceful, productive citizens from criminal harassment and violence in general. But when too many laws are passed that are arbitrary burdens or which even give the criminal element an advantage over law-abiding citizens, then that traditional respect for law and trust in our court system begins to break down and is replaced by cynicism for all authority. For laws to be respected, they must first be respectable and consistent with the primary purpose of government which is to protect the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness of peaceful citizens from crime and foreign aggression. Laws which go beyond that proper function of government necessarily undermine that proper, legitimate mission and contradict the reason that government is established in the first place. The current law in California which forbids peaceful non-criminal citizens from carrying non-stolen handguns for self-protection does just that to the extent that it forces people to have to choose between their own self-defense and abiding by the law. This is especially important for those who do not drive and who must travel at night to, from, or through high-crime areas, such as parts of Lancaster and Los Angeles. Unfortunately, the politicians who passed the law almost certainly are not in that situation themselves and may find it hard to relate to someone who is.
Policing criminality is a proper and basic function of government. Since police cannot be everywhere at the same time, however, peaceful citizens often have to assume a certain amount of responsibility for self-defense by exercising their right recognized under the Constitution to peacefully bear arms. Although states have a certain amount of leeway in regulating the use of firearms, an armed citizenry is a benefit to society and not a threat to peace. Shouldn't California join the 45 other states which allow peaceful citizens, at least those with no history of violent crime, to keep and bear firearms for their own protection? It is outrageous that peaceful adult citizens are harassed or even incarcerated while real criminals are let loose to prey on society. The laws and enforcement agencies should protect society from terrorists and ordinary criminals while leaving peaceful adult citizens alone as much as possible.~Sam Wells
The Final Straw
by Bruce Bartlett
The White House appears to have been truly blindsided by the vehemently negative response from conservative intellectuals to the nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court. In truth, this is a revolt that has been long in the making. The surprising thing is that it has taken such a long time for it to come out into the open.
The truth that is now dawning on many movement conservatives is that George W. Bush is not one of them and never has been. They were allies for a long time, to be sure, and conservatives used Bush just as he used them. But it now appears that they are headed for divorce. And as with all divorces, the ultimate cause was not the final incident, but the buildup of grievances over a long period that one day could no longer be overlooked, contained or smoothed over.
From the conservative point of view, the list of grievances is a long one, dating back to the first days of the Bush administration.
-- One of President Bush's first actions in office was a vast expansion of education spending with little real reform in return. To conservatives, it has always looked like a transparent effort to buy off the so-called soccer moms. But rather than buy peace with the education lobby, it has simply led to continuous calls for still more education spending, despite the paucity of evidence correlating spending with achievement.
-- Almost all conservatives view campaign finance reform as a blatantly unconstitutional abridgement of the First Amendment, the Supreme Court's endorsement notwithstanding. Now it may end up being used to suppress blogs and other new media that have been critical for conservatives in breaking the liberal monopoly of the mainstream press.
-- It is the rare conservative who has a kind word for the Bush immigration policy. Most conservatives think that he has been woefully weak on protecting our borders. Among the grassroots of the Republican Party, there is active hostility to administration plans to allow illegal immigrants to have guest-worker status. Most see this as a form of amnesty that will further encourage illegal immigration.
-- Even leaving aside national defense and homeland security, government spending has exploded during the Bush years. Although the vast proliferation of pork-barrel spending, which President Bush steadfastly refuses to veto, has gotten most of the attention, far more worrisome has been the expansion of entitlements, especially the extraordinarily ill-conceived Medicare drug benefit. In future years, Republicans will rue the day they passed this legislation, because they are eventually going to have to cut it, thereby losing all the political benefits they thought they would get among the elderly.
-- Government regulation got a big boost from passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley bill, which Republicans rushed through Congress to deflect criticism over the Enron scandal. But the fact is that nothing in the legislation would have prevented Enron's financial abuses -- a fact proven by a new scandal involving stockbroker Refco, which appears to have engaged in Enron-style financial shenanigans that are now being investigated by authorities.
I could go on, but the point is that George W. Bush has never demonstrated any interest in shrinking the size of government. And on many occasions, he has increased government significantly. Yet if there is anything that defines conservatism in America, it is hostility to government expansion. The idea of big government conservatism, a term often used to describe Bush's philosophy, is a contradiction in terms.
Conservative intellectuals have known this for a long time, but looked the other way for various reasons. Some thought the war on terror trumped every other issue. If a few billion dollars had to be wasted to buy the votes needed to win the war, then so be it, many conservatives have argued. Others say that Bush never ran as a conservative in the first place, so there is no betrayal here, only a failure by conservatives to see what he has been all along.
Of course, this doesn't say much for the conservative movement. At best, conservatives were naive about Bush. At worst, they sold out much of what they claim to believe in.
The Miers nomination has led to some long-overdue soul-searching among conservative intellectuals. For many, the hope of finally turning around the judiciary was worth putting up with all he big government stuff. Thus, Bush's pick of a patently unqualified crony for a critical position on the Supreme Court was the final straw.
Had George W. Bush demonstrated more fealty to conservative principles over the last five years, he might have gotten a pass on Miers. But coming on top of all the big government initiatives he has supported, few in the conservative movement are inclined to give him the benefit of a doubt any longer.
* * *
Pro Prop 80 Advocates Still T.U.R.N.ing
to the Hackneyed 'Enron Cliche'
by Wayne Lusvardi
Proponents and opponents of California Proposition 80 to re-regulate electricity on the November special election ballot both contend that voting YES or NO respectively would bring about lower electric rates. The state Legislative Analyst has concluded that there is no way of knowing which position or system might bring about lower electric rates. Pro Prop 80 advocates are using the overworked cliches “No More Enrons” and “No More Power Crises” to galvanize public opinion in favor of Prop 80. But are these slogans helpful or are they just “clichés for dummies?”
The hackneyed slogan “No More Enrons” for the Pro Prop 80 advocacy groups refers to the California Electricity Crisis of 2001 where it was widely believed that Enron’s gaming of the energy pricing structure during deregulation caused massive rolling blackouts and huge spikes in electricity prices throughout the state. This explanation of what happened during the California energy crisis was so widespread that it was made into a movie and two popular books.
There is only one problem with this explanation – it is mostly, although not entirely, wrong.
Which leads us to the question – if the media got the story about the 2001 California energy crisis so wrong, how can it get the story about Prop 80 right? And this begs the further question of who propagated such disinformation to the media about Enron’s role in the California energy crisis of 2001 and what would motivate them to do so?
Among the “usual suspects” in the disinformation surrounding the 2001 California energy crisis is The Utility Reform Network (TURN). TURN is a San Francisco-based energy consumer advocacy organization which is subsidized to the tune of $1.5 million a year by what is called “intervenor compensation” mandated by the CPUC by siphoning monies from private electric utilities; which means from your utility bill.
Sociologists would say the “manifest function” of TURN is political and legal advocacy on behalf of California’s electricity consumers. But its “latent function” is to serve as an information gate keeper to the major newspaper and television media for such complicated issues as electricity deregulation and understanding such highly technical issues as the state energy grid.
The average newspaper or TV reporter probably doesn’t know the difference between a kilowatt and a megawatt, let alone the Byzantine regulatory system of electricity in California. Instead they often must rely on the consumer advocacy organizations to help them get the story straight because they cannot always consider the corporate or governmental version of events as reflecting a disinterested point of view.
One of the functions of such advocacy organizations as TURN is thus to fill the void created by the absence of knowledge by journalists and pundits by churning out clichés. Faced with bewildering facts, the function of mass media is to produce some simplistic catch phrases or clichés that will sell newspapers or TV watching.
Connsider the cliché “blonds have more fun.” Anyone who has been to Iceland or Ipanema Beach will find the assertion that “blondes have more fun” as blatantly absurd. Likewise, anyone who studies the California energy crisis of 2001 in depth would find the clichés that “Enron Gamed the System” or “Enron Caused Energy Crisis” as equally absurd. The demon-ization of private corporations is frequently a successful method used by journalists but hardly suffices for educating the public about Prop 80. It is what is called a “red herring” which distracts our attention from the real issues.
Which raises the question why would TURN and other advocacy organizations propagate such misinformation if they were truly a public interest organization?
To answer this question we might “turn” to the website for TURN and review the biographies of its staff (http://www.turn.org/about.shtml). While the legal pedigrees of its staff are beyond question, the backgrounds of most of its staff members are in union and labor advocacy, employment law, environmental advocacy and litigation, antitrust litigation, union organizing, immigrant legal assistance programs, peace activism, and so on. This hardly leads us to believe that TURN is an advocate for California electricity consumers over labor unions, or trial lawyers, or environmentalists opposed to coastal oil platform leases or LNG terminals, or peace activists who don’t care about hostage prices set by oil cartels which hurt poor Americans most, or new immigrants who increase demands on the state energy grid.
So in judging whether to vote YES or NO on Prop 80, perhaps we should use a counter cliché: “consider the source” (see list of pro and con groups below).
FOR PROP 80:
The Utility Consumer Action Network (TURN)
The Consumer Federation of California
The California Public Interest Research Group (liberal think tank)
Retired managers of Southern California Edison Company
Government employee unions (AFSCME)
Alliance for a Better California – Educators, firefighters, school employees, health care givers, and labor organizations
California Teacher’s Association, PACE of California School Employees Association
California State Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees PAC
SEIU Local 1000 – State Employees Association Union PAC
IBEW – International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
Los Angeles Chapter of Peace and Freedom Party
AGAINST PROP 80:
The California Public Utilities Commission (unanimous vote against)
The California Chamber of Commerce
Independent Power Companies, including solar and geothermal companies
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger
State Senator Tom McClintock
The San Francisco Chronicle
The Orange County Register
Howard Jarvis Taxpayer’s Association
San Diego County Taxpayer’s Association
Local Liberty Log, Claremont Institute
About the Writer: Wayne Lusvardi worked for 20 years for the Metro Water District of So. Cal. and lives in Pasadena.
OCTOBER 17, 2005
Iraqi Hopes Are Raised as Voting Occurs with Little Violence
The democratic procedure for ratifying the new constitution is certainly preferable to a bloody civil war for resolving disputes about how Iraqis should be governed, but this early step in itself will not assure peace and freedom in post-Saddam iraq. If private property rights are not respected and protected by the new government, freedom will not be the result. And since there is to be no religious disestablishmentarianism under the new charter, many fear the new government will be an Islamic tyranny. But the massive voter turnout does at least demonstrate that the vast majority of Iraqis courageously oppose the ultra-fascist insurgents who try to disrupt any progress toward political stability, peace, and freedom in Iraq. This successful election is a resounding rebuff of bin Lauden and the insurgency.
The Advent of Freedom? Why the New Iraqi Constitution is Unlikely to Bring Freedom to Iraqis -- Onkar Ghate
Farrakhan Spews New Hate Pitch for the Gullible
Sooner or later the Negro people will have to grow up and face the truth about race-related issues and stop letting themselves be led by the nose by accepting the lies and anti-white conspiracy propaganda from Louis Farrakhan and other racist hot air balloons. When will they stop letting themselves be used as pawns by the power-hungry Democrat Party politicians? The answer is blowin' in the wind....
Russians Helping Iran with Missile Threat to Europe --
by Con Coughlin (telegraph.co.uk)
China's Second Manned Space Mission Ends Successfully
LOUIS FREEH BREAKS SILENCE!
REVEALS MORE DETAILS OF
CLINTON'S BETRAYAL OF AMERICA
Former FBI Director Louis Freeh will be interviewed during the 8:00 a.m. hour on KFI radio AM 640 KHz (the Bill Handel Show) tomorrow (Tuesday) about his revelations about the Clinton Presidency (and how the Clinton policies helped set the U.S. up for what happened on 9/11/01) in his brand new book. Here's hoping the truth about the Clinton White House will finally be more appreciated by the American people.
Christopher Columbus discovered that there was an unmapped continent between Europe and China. But it was Amerigo Vespucci who mapped it and named it the "New World."
Columbus' letter telling of his discovery caused hardly a ripple among scientific and government circles when it reached Rome in 1493. Vespucci's four expeditions and production of maps had a decisive influence on creating the "New World" - eventually renamed after him.
A few people have had cities, rivers, or streets named after them. Whole countries have been reserved for only a select few - Boliva for Simon Bolivar, Columbia for Christopher Columbus, and Rhodesia for Cecil Rhodes. But the honor of a whole hemisphere has been the exclusive honor of Amerigo Vespucci.
We forget that Vespucci voyaged from the City of Florence - the same city that produced the Medici's, the Borgia's, Machiavelli, Leonardo da Vinci, and Michelangelo. Little-known in American written history is that it was Vespucci, Varrazaano and Mazzei who contributed to the development of the U.S. Constitution and other founding documents, as well as our form of government (see the book How Florence Invented America by Giancarlo Masini).
Vespucci's maps aided in the development of the Waldseemuller Map of the World in 1507 which was the first to show an American continent (see above).
Three cheers for Columbus day. Two cheers for Vespucci.
The Pasadena Pundit
Not many of our citizens seem to be aware of our fragile form of government, called a democracy. Alexander Fraser Tyler (1748-1813) wrote a remarkable book "The Decline and Fall of the Athenian Republic". Tyler wrote about ancient democracy long before our own American experience with democracy had been fully tested.
Tyler wrote; "A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can exist only until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been 200 years. These nations have progressed through the following sequence:
from bondage to spiritual faith,
from spiritual faith to great courage,
from great courage to abundance,
from abundance to selfishness,
from selfishness to complacency,
from complacency to apathy,
from apathy to dependency,
from dependency back into bondage."
That is why the political thinker, Niccolo Machiavelli (yes, so-called evil Nick) and others, advocated a republic, not a democracy, as a more stable form of government. But don't read Machiavelli's classic book The Prince because you will just misunderstand it.
What kind of government do we have in Pasadena? Well, it's a mixture but is mostly a democracy.
Soros Fingerprints on DeLay Frame-up by Richard Poe
They really go after those individuals whom they consider to be among their most effective opponents.
Ann Coulter Properly Blasts Bush for Miers Nomination
Her sentiments are shared by millions of conservative Republicans and libertarians.
The Coffee-and-Donuts Defense by Michelle Malkin
The (Allegedly) Right's Left Turn by Jacob Laksin
Laksin joins Wells in pointing out the fairly obvious that few libertarians want to acknowledge.
ON BUSH'S LATEST MAJOR
Conservative Base Betrayed by Bush
Not Picking Janice Rogers Brown
or Another Solid Constitutionalist for SCOTUS
(Ann Coulter Was Right When She Said
Bush Cannot Be Trusted
to Do the Right Thing)
by Chuck Muth
HOO-HAH! Welcome to the political Knight Bus. Buckle up and "take 'er away, Ern!"
President Bush has named his nominee to replace Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who has been, from a conservative point of view, on the wrong side of way too many 5-4 Court decisions in the past. With control of the White House and the Senate, conservatives were hoping (expecting) that Bush's nominee would "swing" the Court back over to the right.
For that reason, fireworks and plenty of them were expected over O'Connnor's replacement. But it was generally assumed the fireworks would be coming from the left. Paging Felix Unger. Here's yet another lesson in the dangers of "assuming" anything.
The president's choice is Harriet Miers. Harriet Miers is a member of Bush's "Texas inner circle." And in déjà vu fashion, Miers was the person who was in charge of the search for O'Connor's replacement, just as Dick Cheney was in charge of the search for a Bush running mate back in 2000. Amazing how after scouring the nation for a suitable pick, the pickers themselves are the ones picked, huh?
Ms. Miers is an accomplished lawyer and former deputy White House counsel, but she's never been a judge. That means there's no "paper trail" which would give anyone any idea how she would rule on the bench. That means MAYBE she'd be a "Scalia or a Thomas," but then again, she could end up being a "Kennedy," or, God forbid, another "Souter."
And we're just getting warmed up.
Conservatives who know nothing about Miers will immediately become skeptical once they find out that the nation's top Democrat, Sen. "Give 'Em Hell Harry" Reid, immediately applauded the choice of Miers. If Harry's happy, there's GOTTA be something wrong, right? I mean, "Give 'Em Hell Harry" is a political weather vane for conservatives.
Well, if Harry's support bothers you, you ain't seen nothing yet.
The Third Branch Coalition is a loose-knit group of about 150 conservative organizations headed by Manny Miranda - a former Judiciary Committee senior staffer - which has been leading the judicial nominations fights. Miranda and the Third Branch Coalition are bona fide, card-carrying members of the vast, right-wing conspiracy. They're the real deal when it comes to real conservatives.
Now get a load of this statement put out by Miranda in response to the Miers announcement: "The reaction of many conservatives today will be that the president has made possibly the most unqualified choice since Abe Fortas who had been the president's lawyer. The nomination of a nominee with no judicial record is a significant failure for the advisors that the White House gathered around it."
Yeeeooowwww! Now THAT stings.
The Third Branch Coalition nevertheless notes that the president's nominee deserves a fair hearing and an up-or-down vote, but Miranda is obviously and decidedly not a happy camper over this pick.
"Something has been left unachieved by the Miers nomination," Miranda's statement continues. "A Republican president has yet to erase the stigma of the Robert Bork hearings and the David Souter nomination. The nomination of Harriet Miers has not rid us of the repugnant situation that a jurist with a clear and distinguished record will not be nominated for higher service. The nomination did not rid us of the apprehension of stealth nominees."
In other words, not only can we continue to expect fireworks coming from the left over Miers' nomination - because obstruction of anything Bush wants is just what they do - but some significant opposition is likely to develop on the right, as well. This nomination, despite the GOP majority in the Senate, is far from a slam dunk for Mr. Bush.
Ms. Miers is Mr. Bush's pick and she DOES deserve the benefit of the doubt, a fair hearing and an up-or-down vote. But it's hard to accept that this nomination is the best the president could have done. Put us firmly in the "undecided" column on this one for now...but we are not impressed or exited by this pick.
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
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* * *Bush Recoils from Greatness -- Patrick Buchanan
Cheney Tells Rush that Miers is Conservative
Miers Donated to Albert Gore -- NewsMax
ON JIM GILCHRIST, THE
BORDER CONTROL ISSUE, AND
THE SPECIAL ELECTION OF OCTOBER 4
THROWING "BENEDICT TOM" OUT OF LINCOLN'S CABIN
by Chuck Muth
Boy, oh boy, are the long knives ever out for Congressman Tom. His enemies want his political scalp. They want to shut him up. He's been too darned effective in communicating his message. He loves to stir the pot. And he doesn't scurry away from a fight with his tail between his legs. It's so bad, even some fellow Republicans want to run him out of the GOP.
No, not Tom DeLay. Tom Tancredo.
A few years back, Rep. Tancredo, Colorado Republican, became the most outspoken member of Congress in opposition to President Bush's amnesty proposal for millions of illegal aliens currently residing illegally in the United States. (The key word here, by the way, is "illegal.") For his trouble, Tancredo says he was called a "traitor" by Bush adviser Karl Rove, and was warned to never again "darken the doorstep of the White House.''
Not that they ever actually had the ol' "Welcome" mat out for him in the first place, but still. Tancredo is a reliable and consistent conservative Republican. His lifetime ACU Conservative Rating over six years in office is an astounding 98. A Republican like that isn't welcome in a Republican White House? But a liberal Republican like Sen. Lincoln Chafee is? What's wrong with this picture?
Then there's Chris Cannon. Rep. Cannon, Utah Republican, is the darling of the "open borders" set. Indeed, he's been the White House's point man on amnesty for illegal aliens and is the go-to guy in Congress for radical Hispanic groups such as La Raza and MALDEF. They give him awards and honor him at dinners on a regular basis. Indeed, many have questioned whether Cannon actually represents Provo, Utah...or Tijuana, Mexico. And their tongues aren't always planted firmly in cheek when they do.
Anyway, at a Latino Coalition event last spring, Cannon questioned whether "there is a place in the Republican Party" for people such as Tancredo who want to clamp down on illegal immigration. "I think he ought to consider his views and decide whether they're consistent with the Republican Party," said Cannon, saying it was time for Tancredo to leave the party of Lincoln.
Anyone who knows Chris Cannon well (and, unfortunately, I do) knows the guy is more than a little squirrelly, completely untrustworthy and a huckster who is never without a little snake oil for sale at a cheap price. And THIS guy wants to toss TANCREDO out of the party?
Which brings me to Darrell Issa. Rep. Issa (R) represents a district in southern California not too far from the 48th congressional district. The 48th has been represented by Rep. Chris Cox (R) for many years. But Cox resigned over the summer to take over the Securities & Exchange Commission. So there will be a special election primary on Tuesday to select his replacement.
Now, in addition to a number of Republicans vying for the seat, Jim Gilchrist, founder of the volunteer border-monitoring Minuteman Project, is running as the American Independent Party candidate. Gilchrist was a Republican until 1996 when, he told me in August, he left the party because the GOP was ignoring the illegal immigration problem. He flirted with joining the Libertarian Party back then - because at heart, he really is a limited government kinda guy. But the LP is primarily an open borders organization, so that wasn't an option. Rather than be politically "homeless," Gilchrist decided to register as a member of the conservative AIP.
Since that time, Republicans in Congress such as Tom Tancredo have given Gilchrist hope that there may be hope for the GOP on the illegal immigration issue after all. And he'd like to go to Congress and be another conservative foot-soldier in the battle to tighten our borders (and our government spending). Alas, a California state law prohibited Gilchrist from re-registering and running as a Republican in this special election. He has, however, sent a letter to House Speaker Denny Hastert informing Hastert that, if elected, he will most assuredly caucus with and vote for continued Republican leadership in the House (if that's not too much of an oxymoron these days).
On the other hand, the leading Republican candidate in the race is a state legislator who is comparatively weak on the illegal immigration issue. One of state Sen. John Campbell's first votes in office was in favor of a bill granting illegal aliens cheaper college tuition. As Homer Simpson would say, "D'oh!"
Bearing all of the above in mind, Congressman Tancredo formally endorsed Jim Gilchrist a few days ago. And boy, did that ever get Darrell Issa's tights in a twist! According to the National Journal in Washington, "Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., said he would urge that Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., be thrown out of the Republican Party if he continues backing a third-party candidate in the special election for California's 48th District. 'I would ask the state of Colorado to strip him of his party membership,' Issa said in an interview."
For endorsing a conservative candidate who wants to tighten border security and enforce the law? Go figure.
Here's something for Rove, Cannon and Issa to think about: If you bounce all the "Tancredo Republicans" from the Republican Party, the Republican Party would go the way of the Whigs overnight.
Hmmmm. Considering how Bush Republicans are spending our country into oblivion these days, that might not be such a bad idea.
A number of years ago, a reporter asked another California Republican congressman to talk about illegal immigration. "What's to talk about?" replied Rep. Sonny Bono, "It's illegal." Sadly, such a level-headed, common-sense response today would mean there'd be no place for Sonny Bono in a Tancredo-free GOP. I'm starting to think there isn't a place for me here, either. How about you?
# # #
Chuck Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, a non-profit public policy advocacy organization in Washington, D.C. The views expressed are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Citizen Outreach. He may be reached at email@example.com.
Copyright 2005 Chuck Muth. All rights reserved. "Muth's Truths" may be republished providing the column is copied intact, and full credit is given.
ABOUT DELAY'S INDICTMENT
"Talking about indictments, it is well to remember that an indictment is not a conviction. An indictment is a tool the government and its representatives too often use to intimidate and persecute citizens against whom it may have a grudge. . . . Prosecutors well know that a conviction is not necessary to ruin a person; an indictment by itself is often enough An indictment to the average citizen strongly implies guilt. An indictment means a trial, means lawyers bills, can mean bankruptcy, can destroy a family, can ruin a business or a career." - Lyn Nofziger, "Musings," 9/30/05
Wins Senate Confirmation
in 78-to-22 Vote
The fact that half the Senate Democrats voted for him makes me suspicious if he will be any good at all. Now Bush must pick someone to replace Sandra Day O'Connor. It would really make my day if he would choose someone like Janice Rogers Brown -- but I doubt that will happen. He doesn't seem to have the courage to fight the minority Democrats in the Senate who would try to filibuster such a nomination. And Frist lacks the leadership, it seems. This is the time to demand that Bush pick someone like Janice Rogers Brown to replace O'Connor.
Karl Rove -- More Lucky than Smart says Ann Coulter, who is right on. And why we cannot trust Dubya to do the right thing.
Amazingly, some individuals are saying that Congressman DeLay deserved to get into grouble because he was not somehow "perfect" on defending the Constitution or voting against every bit of wasteful or unconstitutional spending. But, though he has not been "perfect" from a right-wing libertarian perspective, Congressman Tom DeLay is NOT being attacked because he is too left-wing (anti-Constitution) but because he has been too consistently pro-Constitution, at least to the extent that he felt he could do so given his political realities. He is NOT being attacked because he is for any socialist New World Order or too liberal a spender or even really for any alleged violation of Texas campaign finance laws. Just the opposite is true. He is being attacked for his virtues, not his vices. He was targeted for special treatment by George Soros and other bitter ultra-statist individuals and groups.
According to the Republican Liberty Caucus, a more or less libertarian group which advocates "Individual Rights, Limited Government and Free Markets," DeLay is one of the top 8 in Congress according to his voting record. Here is a typical description of the top pro-liberty congresspersons from their website:
Highest House Scores for 2003:
In the House of Representatives, the list of economics votes was more able to distinguish among Republicans as well as between Republicans and Democrats. Only one Congressman got a 100, Jeff Flake of Arizona. Seven others got dinged on one vote, Cannon (UT), DeLay (TX), Franks (AZ), J. Miller (FL), Musgrave (CO), Royce (CA), and Shadegg (AZ). For six of these seven Congressmen, the one blemish on their voting record was roll call vote #98, to increase deposit insurance from $100,000 to $130,000. For the seventh, the one blemish was roll call vote #79, the conservative Budget Resolution.
It is true that DeLay's score fell a bit for 2004, but it was still well in the upper ranks of solid conservative (anti-statist) voters.
And that is no anomaly but typical of Tom DeLay's record -- which, while admittedly far from perfect, is one of the most pro-liberty records in all of Congress.. DeLay is NOT being attacked because he is too left-wing (anti-Constitution) but because he has been too consistently pro-Constitution, (again to the extent that he felt he could, given his political realities -- which is a lot more than the vast majority of other politicians). He has stuck his neck out far more than most.
The American Conservative Union is one of the oldest conservative organizations in America. The ACU has rated every member of the House and Senate since 1971. According to the ACU Index, DeLay has an overall "lifetime" rating of 96% in favor of individual freedom and American national independence, one of the highest score in Congress after 18 years of service.
Those who want to get DeLay out of the way as a congressional leader want to replace him with someone more statist (pro-Big Government), not less statist. The groups targeting DeLay are a gaggle of ultra-statist organizations from People for the (un)American Way to various wealthy Hollywood Marxists, and they are aided by a highly partisan pro-Democrat network news media.
Although some question some of the particular votes chosen as their criteria for ratings, the John Birch Society's Conservative Index -- perhaps the most stringent in some ways -- still has DeLay as one of the leading anti-Big Government voters when viewed overall.
Different organizations choose different issues for their political evaluations, depending on their particular emphases. There are bound to be disagreements among those of us who oppose the left-liberal establoishment about what issues and which bills should be chosen as part of the criteria for rating Congress, but if one looks over the long haul, DeLay's record is one of the best, not one of the worst. Rather than side with our statist opponents in "piling on" this man, I continue to support DeLay as one of the better politicians in the District of Corruption. I know the leftists have been trying to get something on him for some time. I doubt they have anything substantial now.
Conservative leader David Keene observes, "The constant attacks on House Majority Leader Tom DeLay's character and ethics are an organized liberal campaign to demonize the Texas Republican: The goal is to cripple him as a leader or to force him out of his post as second in command among House Republicans. The campaign is being orchestrated outside Congress by a coalition of liberal interest groups financed by the usual suspects. They have taken to calling themselves the "Congressional Ethics Coalition" and claim they are non-partisan citizens' groups enraged by the "corruption" of the Republican Congress. The members of this coalition, however, are anything but non-partisan. George Soros has reportedly given the groups in the coalition upwards of $3 million, and they are staffed by former Democratic Hill aides, liberal activists and Democratic campaign workers." - David A. Keene, American Conservative Union, "Liberals Are Waging a Smear Campaign, Conservatives Must Defend DeLay," April 29, 2005 from Conservative.org
The Democrat National Committee, under the leadership of screamer John Dean, is trying to create an issue of "Republican corruption" which can be used against conservatives in the 2006 elections. (Notice that they are not attacking such Republicans as Lincoln Chafee or Voinovichm are they?) They are against conservatives and libertarians, not ethics violations. In short, it is a case of the Democrat pot calling the Republican kettle black.
* * *
The Whole World is Watching Cindy by Larry Elder
Cindy and Comrades Demand Bush Withdraw Troops
from "Occupied" New OrleansCindy Sheehan has demanded at the HUFFINGTON POST and MICHAEL MOORE'S website that the United States military must immediately leave 'occupied' New Orleans.
"George Bush needs to stop talking, admit the mistakes of his all around failed administration, pull our troops out of occupied New Orleans and Iraq, and excuse his self from power. The only way America will become more secure is if we have a new administration that cares about Americans even if they don't fall into the top two percent of the wealthiest." -- Cindy Sheehan
Yet, it was the leftist propaganda mill that blamed Bush for not sending troops into New Orleans soon enough! No matter what he does, Bush cannot win with the Left. Instead, trying to out-Democrat the Democrats, President Bush seems intent on demonstrating his immense generosity with the taxpayers' money in his plans for a gargantuan bailout and rebuilding of New Orleans and surrounding areas. When will the Bush Republicans ever learn: you cannot win by appeasing the Left.
Whether one is talking about Iraq or New Orleans, it is stupid strategy to telegraph one's punches by announcing to the enemies of law, order, freedom, and justice -- whether they be terrorist insurgents trying to sabotage a freer, stable Iraq or whether they be criminal thugs and anarchist gangs in the Big Easy -- any specific planned date for withdrawal.
What if American and British forces had decided to declare that they would stop fighting Hitler's forces in World War II and announced that they would withdraw all troops from Europe and bring them back home by August of 1943 -- no matter who was winning by that point in time? That would have played into the hands of the enemy who would have just waited until that date and then took over after the Allied retreat! Give a grade of "F" in military strategy and common sense to the Democrats, the anti-U.S. leftists, and all other nincompoops who are demanding that Bush either immediately withdraw or withdraw by some specified date from Iraq or New Orleans no matter whether the people there are able to maintain their security or not.
Those who championed Cindy Sheehan have considerable egg on their faces as her agenda is exposed more and more as an anti-American sham media event that it is. The Left is rapidly losing any and all credibility even among the most gullible Americans. This is one reason why.
Why Mrs. Sheehan Has No Cred; Check out Cindy's Far Left "Anti-war" Buddies
New Orleans & Iraq Need Erhard Capitalism,
Not Marshall Plan Socialism
And if Bush really wants to maximize his chances for success in Iraq and New Orleans, he needs to encourage free enterprise capitalism and private responsibility there (through massive deregulation, abolition of taxes, and strong protection for private property rights) instead of sending billions upon billions in political largesse to promote dependency on Big Government and to prop up socialist bureaucrats and even more corrupt Democrat political regimes.
One of the big myths of the Liberal Establishment is that the Marshall Plan kept Europe in general and Germany in particular from going communist; yet, the massive subsidies which the U.S. taxpayers had to cough up for that plan only helped to prop up socialistic regimes and anti-market bureaucracies. What really kept Germany from going truly socialist and what really caused Germany's post-war "economic miracle" were the pro-free-market policies of Ludwig Erhard under Conrad Adenauer. Erhard ended all political controls on all wages and prices all at once, without consulting with or asking the permission of the Allied occupation authorities (the old CFR bunch) and followed a conservative, anti-inflationary monetary policy which soon brought stability and a return of vital market activities. As East Germany languished under the hard-core socialism of Soviet domination for many decades, West Germany's economy, based on relative free-market capitalism, blossomed into a prosperous, successful country -- one of the most productive in the world.
It is one thing to use the military to assist police in establishing order and to secure the persons and properties of peaceful people from crime and insurgency, but Bush's massive Marshall Plan for New Orleans will strengthen the corrupt Democrat Party regime there and build up the political enemies of the Republican Party while fattening the Swiss bank accounts of the mayor and other Louisiana politicians and crooks. All that money will go down a deep rat hole of Democrat union corruption and schemes to promote still bigger government over our lives. The President could do no worse if he were an official Democrat himself. This betrayal of the GOP's conservative base will assure a powerful stronghold for the Democrat Party for many decades against the Republicans and make any distinction between the two major parties illusory (if that has not already happened).
Meanwhile, as long as Bush is in a liberating mood, he should think about sending troops in to liberate San Fransicko / Oakland, the Peoples' State of Massachusetts, Santa Monica, and New York City. But given how he is mightily helping the Democrats with his New Orleans Marshall Plan, he would probably wind up making those "blue" areas even more socialist (if that's possible) instead of setting up a modern-day General MacArthur over them to reform them into pro-freedom capitalist strongholds as happily happened with Japan after W.W.II. As is often the case, the victories won by our great military professionals are betrayed and sold out by the politicians and post-war planners.
CLEANING OUT N’AWLINS
A Free Article from TTP Intelligence Bulletin
By Dr. Jack Wheeler
What’s the difference between a disaster and an election in New Orleans?
The buses run during an election.
Why isn’t New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin worried about all the dead people being found in Katrina’s aftermath?
Because they’ll keep right on voting anyway.
Tasteless? Here’s what really tasteless: Cleaning up New Orleans physically without cleaning it up politically. Not draining New Orleans’ political cesspool of organized crime and corruption. Not evacuating Mayor Ray Nagin and every city official and police officer on the take before they get their greasy hands on all those billions of taxpayer dollars to rebuild the place.
The appropriate description of New Orleans as a “party town in a welfare swamp” only begins to hint at the hideous truth behind jazz and booze in the French Quarter. That truth is that Mayor Nagin is a crook. New Orleans has probably never had a mayor that wasn’t a crook. New Orleans is the most corrupt crime-infested city in America.
Denny Hastert was more right than he knew when he questioned the wisdom of rebuilding at incredible taxpayer expense a city in a flood plain below sea level that’s bound to be flooded again. Because before it gets flooded again with water, it will be flooded with the same crooks that run the place now.
The New Orleans police force is the most corrupt police force in the country. Is it any wonder that they were videotaped looting along with other looters, and that they’ve been given a vacation in Las Vegas while New York City police officers are doing their job?
The New Orleans Levee Board oversaw repairs on the 17th Street Canal levee last year – at the exact place where it gave way flooding the city. That’s because so much of the money went into Board member’s pockets and substandard concrete.
The left-wing media has focused their attention on the plight of New Orleans and their wrath on George Bush to deflect attention away not just from Mayor Nagin’s incompetence ( you’re all familiar with the hundreds of now-flooded buses he never used for an evacuation), but his criminality.
Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are not just engaging in race-hustling when they preposterously claim Bush didn’t get aid to New Orleans blacks because he’s anti-black. The purpose is to ward off any exposure of New Orleans corruption, which at present in run mostly by blacks.
They are now pre-positioned to scream “Racism!” the moment a Congressman screws up the courage to demand hearings on the connection between Mayor Nagin and the Mafia
or an inquiry into Mayor Nagin’s Swiss bank accounts.
We could look upon Katrina as an opportunity to rid New Orleans of its political filth. But the odds are not good due to the racial incorrectness of doing so. If Mayor Nagin was white he could be Edwin Edwards' cell mate at the Oakdale, Louisiana Federal Prison. That’s where he and so many of the other folks who run New Orleans belong,rather than raking in all the taxpayer loot supposedly for rebuilding the Big Easy.
Louisiana No. 1 in Federal Flood Funding - Money Flowed to Questionable Projects -- Pasadena Pundit
Communities that Opened Arms Are Now Bearing Arms - Houston Chronicle
Green Hotheads Try to Exploit Gulf Tragedy -- Michael Fumento
Throwing Out the Thugs -- Rebecca Hagelin
Stocks Surge As Oil Price Begins Decline -- Fox News
Anti-Freedom Protestors Try to Disrupt Forbes Business Meeting
These protestors hate market capitalism, privatization, property rights, and freedom of choice.
Commies: Boortz and Linder Must Be Destroyed! -- Mike Adams
A review of The FairTax Book by Neal Boortz and John Linder
Report Criticizes Annan, U.N. Security Council in Oil-for-Food Scandal
Louisiana Officials Found in Flood-Money Scam
Rush Limbaugh: Katrina's Lessons
La. Gov. Blanco Refused Aid from Pres. Bush -- NewsMax.com
The Mayor Who Failed His City
Bush Nominates John Roberts to Succeed Chief Justice Rehnquist
President Bush on Monday nominated Judge John Roberts to succeed William H. Rehnquist as Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. The president called on the Senate to confirm Roberts before the Supreme Court opens its fall term on Oct. 3. Rehnquist passed away this weekend.
That leaves the seat to be vacated by Sandra Day O'Connor open again. How about Janice Rogers Brown for that one, Mr. President? ~Eddie
Who Should Bush Nominate to Replace O'Connor? -- Ben Shapiro
In Praise of "Price Gouging" by John Stossel
Saddam Confesses to Executions; Trial Begins October 19
AUGUST 31, 2005
The World Watches the Looting of New Orleans by Susan Jones
New Orleans policeman tries
to keep people away from a
drug store in a flooded area of
downtown New Orleans where
other stores have already been looted.
The Terrible Flooding in New Orleans and the Search for Survivors
A full day after New Orleans appeared to have escaped the worst of the destructive force of Hurricane Katrina, two levees broke, sending water coursing into the streets of the city. An estimated 80 percent of the New Orleans is under water -- up to 20 feet deep in some areas -- with miles and miles of homes destroyed. The people still there are without electric power. Looting is rampant as criminals take advantage of the lack of law and order. Inmates in one prison are reportedly rioting. Governor orders total evacuation of the city. That will take time....
Mississippi Deaths in the Hundreds
Biloxi and Gulfport are devastated.
Oil companies begin inspecting damage in Gulf -- Houston Chronicle
Preliminary observations from the air indicate damage to rigs may not be as serious as originally feared.
Who Is Right About Iraq?
by Evan Sayet
We find ourselves, yet again, with an issue on which there can be no middle ground. Are the Democrats right and the war in Iraq is unjust, with great degrees of carnage and America’s defeat at hand? Or are the Republicans right in seeing the cause as noble, victory real and the benefits of a safer region, a more secure America and a more peaceful world already being realized?
Anyone who cares about America needs to care first about the truth. If America is in the wrong then only the truth will help us right it and thus remain the greatest nation in human history. If America is in the right, only the truth will help us sustain our greatness and stand up to – and defeat – our foes. Thus knowing the answer to who is right about Iraq is of no small consequence.
Truth is not defined by who shouts the loudest, repeats their claims the most often or engages in the greatest degree of vitriol, hyperbole, and propaganda. Those of us who seek the truth need to do so by rejecting these things and putting our confidence in the collection and critical evaluation of the facts and evidence.
It is this process that has led me to believe beyond any reasonable doubt that the war in Iraq is right, our victory real, and its benefits profound.
I come to this conclusion by giving great weight not to the political partisans safely ensconced in Washington – isolated in their Georgetown mansions and protected by incumbency and gerrymandering -- but rather to the testimony of those most in the know: the almost one million American and coalition soldiers who have rotated in and out of Iraq over the course of this war on Islamic fascist terrorism.
These are the people who have nothing to gain and quite literally everything to lose by backing a policy that is wrong-headed and failing. Thus, their near-unanimous support for the mission and their descriptions of the realities in-country are of great import to me.
One of the responses I typically get from Democrats when I try to convey this is “well if you love the war so much why don’t you go fight it?” Little do these people recognize that in their non sequitur they are debunking their own positions for those who ARE fighting the war – volunteers all – who overwhelmingly recognize the mission as good and the results as historic.
In fact, given the choice between President George W. Bush and his very clearly stated “stay the course” policy and the just as clear promise of John F. Kerry to quickly exit the Middle East, those with knowledge of and experience in Iraq supported the President in landslide fashion.
This conclusion of one million of our fellow countrymen – those whose very creed is “honor”—is the same as that of the other group with firsthand knowledge of the goings-on in Iraq – the Iraqi people themselves. With twenty-five million Iraqis, the number of terrorists – euphemistically called “insurgents” by a sympathetic American media – is but a miniscule fraction. And even that number needs to be bolstered by importing non-Iraqi killers from Iran, Syria and elsewhere.
Like the American servicemen in Iraq, the Iraqi people have nothing to gain and quite literally everything to lose by siding with bad policy and a failing campaign. Clearly, if the Iraqi people believed what the Democrats claim, they would not be sitting by and allowing the terrorists -- those whose first target after their “victory” would be these “infidels” and “apostates” who failed to fight against the “Great Satan” -- to get the upperhand.
Events in the greater Middle East serve as even further evidence of the rightness of our mission and the victories we have achieved. Surely it is beyond even the most hysterical on the left to suggest that the reason the Lebanese people took to the streets to demand the same democracy for themselves that they saw flourishing in Iraq was either because they believed democracy to be unjust or they knew it to be failing.
And it requires just as much lunacy to argue that the Ba'athists in Syria suddenly ended their three-decade long brutal occupation of Lebanon because they were witnessing their ideological brethren and allies in terror in Iraq winning.
To counter this overwhelming evidence, logic and testimony from those in the know, the Democrats offer little. In the Democrats’ pro-defeat cause hysteria takes the place of reason, partisanship trumps patriotism and slander becomes the rule of the day. The Democrats’ strategy is best exemplified by Michael Moore’s movie “Fahrenheit 9/11” in which cherry-picked “facts,” manipulated evidence, and outright lies are combined in an effort to undermine America’s will to fight for freedom.
Rather than offer thoughtful and reasoned argument, the Democrats’ “war plan” is simply to slander our troops, ignore the testimony of the Iraqi people, sell the notion that democracy’s spread to Lebanon and Egypt and beyond was just dumb, blind luck or coincidence, and to harp on anything less than utter perfection in strategy and execution as if it were a conspiracy by the Democrats’ enemies in America toward some dastardly end that is never quite named but is so self-evident in the inherent evil of their fellow countrymen that naming it would be the crime of redundancy.
In the Democrats’ campaign the misdeeds of a handful of night guards at a prison for suspected fascist terrorists is sold as “the new Holocaust,” children are taught that the victims of 9/11 were nothing short of “little Eichmans” deserving of their fate, and unpleasant room temperatures in an interrogation cell for enemy fighters is read into the Congressional record as being on par with the killing fields of Pol Pot or the gulags of Josef Stalin.
As every misstep of strategy or execution is used by the Democrat to bludgeon America and Americans real atrocities committed by the Islamic terrorists are portrayed as some sort of military victory for the powerful “insurgency.” In reality, however, these pitiful acts of suicide and murder have not achieved a single victory for the fascists as the Iraqi people have created a constitution, held a democratic election and are forming a government of the people, by the people and for the people all exactly on schedule. In this war between fascism and democracy only the most partisan could seek to portray the enemy’s utter failure as victory.
Yet even in the leftists’ disinformation campaign the rational thinker can find overwhelming evidence that the Democrats’ position is folly (if not fraud), for as CNN and al Jazeera focus on the handful of car bombs in Baghdad they are tacitly admitting that there was nothing negative they could find to report from Basra, Fullujah or any other city or town in a country the size of the state of California. Similarly, as Democrats Dick Durbin and Joe Biden seek to portray a lack of air conditioning in interrogation cells at Guantanamo Bay as the killing fields of Pol Pot or Ted Kennedy attacks America’s troops because a couple of people put panties on terrorists’ heads, it is clearly because they can find nothing of substance to use in their pro-defeat campaign.
And it is from CNN and their “experts” -- as well as the Democrats like Durbin, Biden, Dean and Kennedy -- that the rational thinker can find even more reason to reject the left’s arguments, for their cries of defeat are only the latest in a long line of illogical – and ultimately wrong -- claims stretching all the way back to before the first shot in this war for democracy was even fired.
Remember, it was these same “experts” who attempted to sell a dust storm as evidence of America’s defeat to Saddam’s armies even as American troops were soon to enter Baghdad in the swiftest military victory in human history. It was these same Democrats who tried to peddle the notion of an Iraq in such utter chaos that elections couldn’t possibly take place even as the Iraqi people were heading to the polls in numbers (percentage) greater than those in even America’s most recent national elections. And it was these same leftists who promised the overthrow of every “moderate” Arab regime and the spread of fascism and terror throughout the Middle East when, in reality, the only leaders overthrown were Saddam Hussein and those of the Taliban, while Syria’s cruel occupation of Lebanon was ended and terrorism against our democratic ally in Israel has dropped by over ninety percent.
A history of dire – and utterly wrong – predictions is the legacy of these leftists because their claims aren’t based on the facts, nor on the evidence or testimony of those in the know. They are partisan arguments made by those who put their personal agendas ahead of what’s right, true and good. Their spin on the current situation in Iraq is no different and those who seek truth by the reasoned evaluation of the evidence need to recognize the case is clear and the war that has liberated Iraq, spread democracy throughout the Middle East, and made America safer is noble, right, and being won.
All those who support the American war in Iraq should make a deal with anyone opposed to the war. Offer to answer any 20 questions the opponents wish to ask if they will answer just one:
Do you believe we are fighting evil people in Iraq?
That is how supporters of the war regard the Baathists and the Islamic suicide terrorists, the people we are fighting in Iraq.
Because if you cannot answer it, or avoid answering it, or answer "no," we know enough about your moral compass to know that further dialogue is unnecessary. In fact, dialogue is impossible. Our understanding of good and evil is so different from yours, there is simply nothing to discuss. Someone who was asked a hundred years ago "Do you believe that whites who lynch blacks are evil?" and refused to answer in the affirmative was not someone one could dialogue with.
Here are the responses you are likely to receive:
1. The Bush administration is just as evil: for illegally invading a country that did not threaten us; for "lying" to get us into Iraq; and because it is a war for corporate profits.
2. Some of those we are fighting may be evil, but not all; some are simply fighting against foreign occupation of their country.
3. We cannot call anyone evil; only God can make such judgments.
I will respond to these "responses," but what is most important is to acknowledge that none of them actually responds to the question. Anyone posing this question to opponents of the war must not let them off the hook. They must answer the question: Do you believe we are fighting evil people in Iraq?
Regarding the issue of judging anyone evil, the best response is a question: Can we judge anyone to be good (not perfect, just good)? Of course we can. But if we can't call anyone evil, we can't call anyone good, and we certainly know that there are good people. If there are good people, there have to be not good, evil people.
Anyone who remains unable to morally judge people who slit the throats of innocent people, who place bombs in the middle of markets, and who murder anyone attempting to help women achieve basic human rights is a moral imbecile.
As for the Bush administration being equally evil, this, too, reveals the responder's values. It is one thing to believe the war was a mistake; it is quite another to regard it as a function of the administration's desire to enrich Halliburton or expand the "American empire," or because Jewish neo-conservatives pushed docile Gentiles -- Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld -- into waging it "for Israel." Such views are held by people who are so angry and so brainwashed about conservatives that they have lost the elementary ability to identify real evil, which is what Islamic and Baathist terrorists and "insurgents" are.
Finally, the people fighting us in Iraq hate freedom, hate women's rights, hate non-Muslims, and do all they can to murder innocent Iraqis and others in order to undermine the march toward freedom in Iraq. They are not fighting foreign invaders; they are fighting foreign liberators and domestic democrats.
It is worth again noting that none of those responses directly answers the question: Do you believe we are fighting evil people in Iraq?
It is one thing to oppose the war in Iraq; it is quite another to deny the evil of those we fight there. That is what the Left in America routinely does. And that is why the culture war in America is as important as the military war in Iraq.
©2005 Creators Syndicate, Inc.
AUGUST 29, 2005
After Hitting Florida, Katrina Floods New Orleans
Residents leave homes, evacuate city. Nearly ten thousand seek shelter in Superdome.
Gulf Coast Produces Over 25 Percent of U.S. Oil Supply
Oil prices are sure to spike as a result of this storm.
U.S. Oil Price Spikes Above $70 as Katrina Rips Through Gulf
Lundberg: Gasoline Prices Could Jump Again
The Geopolitics of Katrina
A Worse Case Scenario of the Possible Disastrous Repercussions
from StratFor and the Pasadena Pundit
A Category 5 hurricane, the most severe type measured, Katrina has been reported heading directly toward the city of New Orleans. This would be a human catastrophe, since New Orleans sits in a bowl below sea level. However, Katrina is not only moving on New Orleans. It also is moving on the Port of Southern Louisiana. Were it to strike directly and furiously, Katrina would not only take a massive human toll, but also an enormous geopolitical one.
The Port of Southern Louisiana is the fifth-largest port in the world in terms of tonnage, and the largest port in the United States. The only global ports larger are Singapore, Rotterdam, Shanghai and Hong Kong. It is bigger than Houston, Chiba and Nagoya, Antwerp and New York/New Jersey. It is a key link in U.S. imports and exports and critical to the global economy.
The Port of Southern Louisiana stretches up and down the Mississippi River for about 50 miles, running north and south of New Orleans from St. James to St. Charles Parish. It is the key port for the export of grains to the rest of the world -- corn, soybeans, wheat and animal feed. Midwestern farmers and global consumers depend on those exports. The United States imports crude oil, petrochemicals, steel, fertilizers and ores through the port. Fifteen percent of all U.S. exports by value go through the port. Nearly half of the exports go to Europe.
The Port of Southern Louisiana is a river port. It depends on the navigability of the Mississippi River. The Mississippi is notorious for changing its course, and in southern Louisiana -- indeed along much of its length -- levees both protect the land from its water and maintain its course and navigability. Dredging and other maintenance are constant and necessary to maintain its navigability. It is fragile.
If New Orleans is hit, the Port of Southern Louisiana, by definition, also will be hit. No one can predict the precise course of the storm or its consequences. However, if we speculate on worse-case scenarios the following consequences jump out:
The port might become in whole or part unusable if levees burst. If the damage to the river and port facilities could not be repaired within 30 days when the U.S. harvests are at their peak, the effect on global agricultural prices could be substantial.
There is a large refinery at Belle Chasse. It is the only refinery that is seriously threatened by the storm, but if it were to be inundated, 250,000 barrels per day would go off line. Moreover, the threat of environmental danger would be substantial.
About 2 percent of world crude production and roughly 25 percent of U.S.-produced crude comes from the Gulf of Mexico and already is affected by Katrina. Platforms in the path of Katrina have been evacuated but others continue pumping. If this follows normal patterns, most production will be back on line within hours or days. However, if a Category 5 hurricane (of which there have only been three others in history) has a different effect, the damage could be longer lasting. Depending on the effect on the Port of Southern Louisiana, the ability to ship could be affected.
A narrow, two-lane highway that handles approximately 10,000 vehicles a day, is used for transport of cargo and petroleum products and provides port access for thousands of employees is threatened with closure. A closure of as long as two weeks could rapidly push gasoline prices higher.
At a time when oil prices are in the mid-60-dollar range and starting to hurt, the hurricane has an obvious effect. However, it must be borne in mind that the Mississippi remains a key American shipping route, particularly for the export and import of a variety of primary commodities from grain to oil, as well as steel and rubber. Andrew Jackson fought hard to keep the British from taking New Orleans because he knew it was the main artery for U.S. trade with the world. He was right and its role has not changed since then.
This is not a prediction. We do not know the path of the storm and we cannot predict its effects. It is a warning that if a Category 5 hurricane hits the Port of Southern Louisiana and causes the damage that is merely at the outer reach of the probable, the effect on the global system will be substantial.
Anti-War Protests Target Wounded at Army Hospital
By Marc Morano
CNSNews.com Senior Staff Writer
Washington (CNSNews.com) - The Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., the current home of hundreds of wounded veterans from the war in Iraq, has been the target of weekly anti-war demonstrations since March. The protesters hold signs that read "Maimed for Lies" and "Enlist here and die for Halliburton."
The anti-war demonstrators, who obtain their protest permits from the Washington, D.C., police department, position themselves directly in front of the main entrance to the Army Medical Center, which is located in northwest D.C., about five miles from the White House. Read Full Report Here
See Marc Morano's Video Report
* * *
Calif. State Sen. McClintock on the November Ballot Props
I've been getting calls about the various ballot propositions for the Special Election.
Here's how I see them:
Proposition 73: Parental Notification for Abortion. If parental consent is required for a child to use a tanning booth or get her ears pierced, shouldn’t parents at least be notified if she’s getting an abortion? YES. Whether you’re pro-life or pro-choice, this should be the all-time no-brainer.
Proposition 74: Teacher Tenure. Do parents have a right to expect a higher level of competence before a teacher is granted life-time tenure? YES. This modest measure simply increases the teacher probation period from two years to five years.
Proposition 75: Public Employee Union Dues. Should public employees decide for themselves which candidates they will support with their own money? YES. This measure requires that before a public employee union can take money from that employee for political donations, it has to get the employee’s permission.
Proposition 76: State Spending. Should government live within its means? YES. This measure restores the authority that the governor of California had between 1939 and 1983 to make mid-year spending cuts whenever spending outpaces revenue without having to return to the legislature.
Proposition 77: Re-districting. Should voters choose their representatives in legislative districts that are drawn without regard to partisan advantage? YES. The most obvious conflict of interest in government is when politicians choose which voters will get to vote for them by drawing their own legislative district lines. This measure puts a stop to it.
Propositions 78 and 79: Prescription drug discounts. Do you want the same people who run the DMV to run your pharmacy? NO. These are rival measures, one supported by drug companies and the other by liberal activists – both of which purport to lower drug prices. What they really do is assure that one group of patients gets to pay higher prices to provide subsidized prices for others. There’s no such thing as a free Levitra.
Proposition 80. Electricity Regulation. Do you want the same people who run the DMV to run your electricity company? NO. This measure locks in monopoly control of your electricity by the bureaucratized utilities and forbids you from ever being able to shop around for the lowest-priced electricity available.
* * *
AUGUST 22, 2005
DEMOCRAT TURNS REPUBLICAN
Disgusted by Dem "anti-war" Defeatism & Anti-Bush Hate Speech
"Cindy sealed the deal!"
by Scott Randolph
I actually felt myself become a republican today. It was around 10am, when I read the latest update of the Cindy Sheehan saga in CNN.com. I then shot over to read some blogs about it, and perused the comments in some of them, which was nothing but a long series of petty (albeit entertaining) partisan bickering.
Then it happened. The good little democrat in me tied the little noose around his neck and jumped off the stool. He just couldn’t take it anymore.
Take what? The whining. The constant whining by the extreme left about the reasons for war, the incompetence of this administration, and how we’ve all been lied to, and how we should pull out of Iraq immediately, because, *gulp* our soldiers were in danger.
Guess what folks….they signed up to join the Army, not the boy scouts. Anytime your orientation to a new job involves an automatic weapon, you should be smart enough to figure out there’s danger involved. I actually read some people’s comments about many of the soldiers over there being naive….they weren’t expecting to go to war, so, they should be allowed to go home. Wow.
Soldiers know, when they enlist, that it is entirely possible they will be shipped out and never come home. It’s part of the job. The fact that people still walk in to recruiters’ offices and sign that piece of paper make them heroes. To imply that they are simple kids who didn’t know what they were getting into, or even worse, that they died for no reason, or an immoral reason, does a horrible thing. It strips their sacrifice of the honor that it deserves. Even though those folks sitting out there in the Texas fields claim to honor and support the soldiers, they obviously have been blinded by their own selfishness as to the real way to support them.
Because, long story short, we can’t end this war now. That would send the message that those bastardly little terrorists have won. It doesn’t matter if the administration told us the desert sand was made of gold, and we are going over there to collect it in little buckets to bring home, the concrete fact that we are at war doesn’t change. We are there, and we have a job to finish. We’ve toppled a regime that was dangerous not only to its own people, but also to the rest of the world. Now, we are there fighting the same terrorists we are fighting in Afghanistan. We’ve given liberty to millions of people, and we’re trying to help create a government, in an area that is very volatile, that will be a bastion of freedom and hope for an entire race of people. I hate the fact that our boys are getting killed over there, and I wish it didn’t have to happen.
But, it is, there’s nothing we can do about it, except for doing everything we can to offer support and hope to the folks fighting over there. Arguing and whining about the reasons we’re there, and the need to come home not only kills morale, but it is a complete waste of time.
I just re-read the above post, and I apologize for the rambling….just needed to vent a little. Here’s a breakdown of the way I see things:
-right or wrong, we’re at war. no amount of yelling will fix that now.
-we have to finish the job. HAVE TO. it may take another 1800 soldiers, but it has to be done
-whether or not we’re there for the right reason, we’ve done something great for that country
I never was a big fan of Bush. But, one thing I do believe….he honestly wants to make this country, and this world a better place. Think about it…the war almost cost him the election. If we hadn’t invaded Iraq, he’d have won in a landslide.
I think it’s just my personality that lead me to this decision. I think the left is too concerned with everyone’s immediate rights and needs, and refuses to sacrifice a bit of comfort and happiness in the present, for something that will make life better for everyone in the future. You can take the environmental stance on that, and I’d have no argument…but I think there enough conservatives concerned with that to make it a moot point.
Mostly, I’m just really pissed off. We’re in a crappy situation, and it’s time for all of America to stand together, put on the big boy pants, and get through the next few years.
* * *
UK Cops & MI5 Score A Major Intel Breakthrough and Foil Nerve Gas Plot Against Parliament by Al Qaeda Cell
AUGUST 18, 2005
Enabling Danger -- Col. Oliver North
North's take on the recent revelations about Operation Able Danger -- and how they contradict the testimony of former Clinton official Richard Clarke.
The Clinton Administration Was Warned About bin Laden in 1996, but Clinton Officials Chose to Ignore the Report
Was this part of the classified information that Sandy Berger was trying to steal and destroy to cover up Clinton era incompetence? While Al Qaeda was allowed to grow stronger, Nero fiddled around.
Officer Says Military Lawyers Blocked Sharing of Files on 9/11 Terrorism -- Philip Shenon
Mexico Funds Staging Areas for Illegals -- Washington Times
Forty Percent of Mexicans Want to Move to the U.S,, Says Poll
The Official Minuteman Civil Defense Corps
More Distortions from DNC Chairman Dean -- Robert Novak
Rush Limbaugh Wins New Court Ruling -- NewsMax
Rush has not been charged with any crimes. He has been under investigation for suspected doctor shopping -- secretly obtaining overlapping prescriptions in a 30-day period. Many believe this investigation is politically motivated by Democrats because Limbaugh is a conservative Republican. But Rush, knowing that they are out to discredit him any way they can, should have been sharp enough to avoid getting set up. He is now having to fight for medical privacy and the latest ruling is a victory in that cause.
Beijing Bear Hug by Peter Brookes
More Troubles at the Border: NM Governor Declares State of Emergency
As Bush continues to turn a deaf ear to the crisis of illegals, Gov. Bill Richardson declared a state of emergency along New Mexico's 180-mile border with Mexico on Friday, pledging $1.75 million to beef up law enforcement and tackle increasing crime.
Run for the Border by John Fund, Opinion Journal
Democrats try to outflank the GOP on illegal immigration issue. Will people fall for this political strategy?
Has the GOP Lost Its Soul? by Mark Tapscott
US Intelligence Knew of Al Qaeda Cell Before 9/11 But Government investigating Commission Buried the Information. -- Reuters
Space Shuttle Discovery Lands Safely in California: Future of Shuttle Program Still in Doubt Private Enterprise Plans $100 Million Tours Around the Moon This could have been done decades ago if the government had not soaked up trillions of dollars out of the economy for its counter-productive social programs.
Western Canadians Considering Secession, according to Poll
Maybe the U.S. Could Cede San Fransicko/Oakland, New York, and Massachusetts to Eastern Canada or France....
Weapons of Mass Destruction, the Overthrow of Saddam, and An Opportunity for a New Direction Against State-Sponsored Terrorism
by Sam Wells
Although the possibility that Nazi dictator Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction was only one of several reasons given by the Bush Administration for using military force to remove Saddam from power and try to secure Iraq as a pro-freedom, anti-terrorist ally, it was nonetheless an important factor in helping to justify Operation Iraqi Freedom. For that reason, it is important to know whether such weapons existed, or were under development, or (as many of Bush's political adversaries claim) there were never any there in the first place.
1. I am willing to admit that the CIA might have been totally wrong about WMDs in Iraq, or may have misrepresented what it knew to both President Clinton and to President Bush (since both accepted the belief that Saddam Hussein had WMDs or WMDs under development). BUT, then what does that say about all those other intelligence agencies around the world, including the UK's MI6, which agreed with the WMD assessment? Were they all wrong? That is possible, but is it likely? Were they all duped by Ahmed Chalabi? If so, then the whole Iraq scenario begins to smell somewhat like the movie The Tailor of Panama. While that is possible, it seems a bit of a stretch.
Look: Even France agreed about WMDs in Iraq -- and I'd think that France would have had much more interest in concealing evidence of WMDs instead of saying they existed if they did not, considering how involved top French officials were in the infamous Oil-for-Food UN scandal (getting bribes from Saddam to look the other way).
2. If concern over WMDs in Iraq had been merely a Bush Administration ruse to get us into war against Saddam -- as some claim -- then why did President Clinton also accept the reports about WMDs and yet did not send troops into Iraq? In other words, if the WMD argument had been just an invention of Bush, then one has to explain why the previous President, Bill Clinton, also accepted and believed the reports from the CIA about WMDs in Iraq -- years before Bush became President? Clinton did not need any ruse to get us into war with Saddam since he never sent troops there.
The truth is that the intelligence reports concerning WMDs in Iraq, whether they were accurate or not, go back years before Bush 43 entered the Oval Office and therefore chronologically could not have been made up by the Bush Administration since it did not yet exist. There is no evidence that Bush knowingly lied about the possible existence of WMDs in Saddam-controlled Iraq. He based his claims on intelligence reports he was given by the CIA and other agencies -- the same basic analyses which were given to the previous president (but which Clinton never acted on).
3. We know that Saddam had biochem weapons at one time because he got them from the U.S. back when he was at war with our enemy, the Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran. He was supposed to use those materials only in his war with Khomeini and only against military combatants. He was not supposed to use the U.S.-supplied WMDs against his own people. Yet, he violated those stipulations and murdered tens of thousands of Iraqis with that weaponized anthrax he got from the United States. The question remained: did he use it all up or not? No one knew.
4. After U.S. troops moved into Iraq in Operation Iraqi Freedom -- after the Bush Administration dithered around for months with the UN and European leaders, thus telegraphing its punches well in advance, so that Saddam's minions (with possibly outside assistance) had plenty of time to hide or move the WMDs to Syria or even to Iran -- some residual signs and substantial evidences for WMDs and related systems and materials were indeed found even though no major WMD stockpile or factory was turned up (as yet). Among the materials discovered were 17 tons of nerve gas, 31 tons of mustard gas, several hundred modified SCUD missiles, 100 mobile SCUD launchers, 250 trailer-mounted SCUD launchers, 1.2 million binary type artillery projectiles, 21 tons of raw "yellow cake" uranium, and 5 tons of fuel rods for breeder reactors. I think these constitute something of a clue about what Saddam was really up to.
5. There is also some evidence, including aerial photos supplied by Israel, that major stockpiles of WMDs were moved somewhere (most likely outside of Iraq) with the help of the Russians just prior to the arrival of American troops in Iraq to help overthrow Saddam. Where were these WMDs sent? Syria? Iran? Pakistan?
It is therefore my opinion that there were weapons of mass destruction, existentially or in development phases, in Iraq when Saddam Hussein was in power. Bush was correct. But, because of the endless cat and mouse game that Saddam was playing with the international inspectors, we did not know for sure what he had.
I think it is better to be sure than be sorry a few years later after the fact, as in the case with North Korea's Communist regime which now has nukes (partly thanks to the policies of the Clinton administration). A nutty hard-core Communist imperialist regime armed with nukes is just what Asia and the rest of the world doesn't need! For anyone who values peace in the world and the cause of liberty, it should be obvious that the continued existence of such a totalitarian regime with such WMDs is a chronic menace to freedom and world peace. If North Korea invades the South or sends a nuclear bomb to Seoul, the United States, as an ally of (relatively) Free Korea, will necessarily be involved in the conflict that ensues. And probably mainland China as well. Sooner or later, the ultrastatist Marxist imperialist regime in Pyongyang and its nuclear war capabilities will have to be dealt with, but the policies of appeasement by the Clinton Administration make that a much more dangerous prospect by putting hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions, of people in Seoul in jeopardy from the threat of nuclear bombs from the North.
The Bush Administration obviously wanted to avoid a similar scenario with the rapidly arming regime of Saddam Hussein. The situation had been allowed to worsen because of the ostrich policies of the Clinton Administration. Bush inherited a worsening mess left over from Clinton and Madeleine Allbright's incompetence and which the previous administration failed to deal with or mishandled badly.
My view is that, because of Saddam's imperialistic designs and America's long-range strategic interests, war with Saddam was inevitable and unavoidable. It was not a matter of "if" but only of "when" it would take place.
If such a military confrontation is inevitable, one does not have to be a military strategist to realize that it is far better to get it over with sooner (BEFORE the enemy has had a chance to strengthen itself with weapons of mass destruction) rather than later (when casualties would be much, much higher). The longer our leaders dither and appease our enemies -- as especially was the case during the Clinton Administration -- instead of nipping them in the bud, the worse the cost and carnage will be when the unavoidable conflict finally does erupt full-scale. Appeasement and pretending that an enemy does not exist, or that it is not a threat, makes attacks and war more likely, not less likely. Military preparedness and eternal vigilance are the price of peace and freedom, especially in today's world.
Those who opposed U.S. liberation of Iraq from Saddam's dictatorship early on would have allowed Saddam's military to become even more threatening and therefore American and allied casualties much, much greater. It is clear that the international inspectors were getting nowhere. And the UN, corrupt to the core as it was and is, was on the take from Saddam via the Oil for Food scam.
6. What about the "yellow cake" uranium controversy? It is understandable that President Bush would want to use the allegation that Saddam had tried to buy "yellow cake" uranium as a way of buttressing his case for sending troops into Iraq and disarming Saddam. His fact checker had reportedly removed the sentence in Bush's speech about the "yellow cake" claim -- but it was later put back in the final draft by someone else.
So, did Saddam Hussein try to buy "yellow cake" uranium or not? The controversy arises because some documents -- letters referring to the sales, apparently sent by a Nigerian official to a senior honcho in Saddam Hussein's regime -- that originally served as part of the evidence for the claim were subsequently shown to be forgeries created by a con man with a history of extortion and deception who had been convicted in Rome in 1985 for similar activities.
But this was not the only evidence, and the human intelligence available to the UK and European intelligence agencies continued to support the claim that Saddam's agents tried to buy or did buy African uranium. British Intelligence still stands by that position even though the Bush Administration has retracted the claim.
Perhaps the most detailed summary of the whole "yellow cake" issue that I've run across was an article entitled "The Truth Behind Iraq and Niger's Uranium" that appeared in the Vol IV No. 27 2004 issue of Eye Spy, the international magazine on espionage and intelligence. Eye Spy magazine reported that there were reliable sources independent of the fake documents given to Western intelligence to support the "yellow cake" story. American analysts now believe that someone at Niger's embassy in Rome might have been connected with the forgeries. "A low-ranking diplomat put the bogus dossier together at the embassy and then sold it to the SISMI (the Italian security and intelligence service) for a few thousand dollars." Of course, officials in Niger stoutly deny that one of their people could be involved.
It also now seems that pro-Dem / anti-Bush partisans within the CIA may have tried to set the Republican President up or provide misleading information to Bush which could backfire later on. We know that Valerie Plame, who works or worked for the CIA (although no longer an active covert agent in the field) and her husband Joe Wilson were avid Democrats who disliked Bush 43. Plame apparently suggested that her husband be sent to Africa to investigate the claim that Saddam had tried to buy "yellow cake" uranium, but the only documents that Wilson brought with him to verify were copies of the bogus letters. There is no indication that he ever tried to check the independent evidence which MI6 and other intelligence agencies in Europe continue to stand by as reliable. Wilson's conclusions and opinion that the "yellow cake" stories were all false have therefore been discredited and Congress has dismissed Wilson's report on Niger as either wrong or unreliable. In an apparent effort to distract from Wilson's embarrassing loss of credibility, Plame and Wilson -- and their friends in the Democrat mass media -- have gone after White House official Karl Rove for allegedly leaking the fact that Plame works or worked for the CIA. This, they claim, was in retaliation for Wilson's report to Congress which contradicted President Bush on the "yellow cake" deal. The White House denies that allegation. See also article "The Uranium Joe Wilson Didn't Mention" and related comments; "Saddam Tried to Buy Uranium" by Mark Huband (Financial Times of London); "The Truth Behind Iraq and Niger's Uranium" in Vol IV No. 27 2004 issue of Eye Spy Magazine.
Other evidence, including NSA intercepts of telephone conversations, revealed that Iraq sent three top-level agents to Niger in 1999. Based on that and other information, the UK analysts concluded that the Iraqis had gone to Niger to try and broker a deal to buy uranium, which can be used to make nuclear weapons. As Eye Spy puts it, "Niger's most profitable export is goats. There is no doubt that MI6 tracked at least three Iraqi government officials who held several meetings discussing a 'trade agreement.'" As one source quipped, "It is highly unlikely the Iraqis were discussing the shipment of a herd of goats."
After U.S. and allied troops entered Iraq and just five days before sovereignty was transferred to the new interim government of Iraq, nearly 2 tons of low-enriched uranium and approximately one thousand highly radioactive items were airlifted from Iraq to the United States. They had been located at the sprawling Tuwaitha nuclear complex, 12 miles south of Baghdad. The international atomic energy inspectors said they knew about this material, but questions remain about where it came from and when.
7. A not totally unrelated issue was Saddam's relationship to terrorism. Democrat Party propagandists in the "mainstream media" networks like to claim that Saddam Hussein had no ties to terrorism whatsoever -- and unfortunately this "talking point" was picked up and repeated by Gary Nolan and other Libertarians who failed to do their homework on the subject. But the facts are otherwise. Saddam had an airliner on the ground where jihadists practiced hijacking. He sent money to the Palestinian terrorists. He had people in his security and intelligence services meeting with Al Qaeda. There were terrorist training camps in Iraq. The links between Saddam and Al Qaeda have been thoroughly documented, See Deadly Connections: States that Sponsor Terrorism by Daniel Byman, published by Cambridge University Press, 2005. which is a study, independent of the work done by Stephen Hayes on the subject. See also "The Mother of All Connections" in the Weekly Standard and "The Al Qaeda/Saddam Link" by Jamie Glazov in FrontPage Magazine.
The Bush Administration never claimed that Saddam Hussein was directly involved with the attacks of 9/11/01 (although Democrat partisans in the media have tried to make people believe the administration made that claim). Saddam's connections to Al Qaeda and terrorism, on the other hand, were known to exist. The fact of state-sponsored terrorism (of which Saddam's regime was only one part) was a critically important consideration in the Bush Administration's decision to go into Iraq in force, and Operation Iraqi Freedom is part of a wider geopolitical strategy in an ambitious effort to encourage political and social changes in the Middle East which will result in quelling that state-sponsored terrorism, thus bringing about a more peaceful world and a more secure America. In this way, Operation Iraqi Freedom was in the national interest of the United States. Iraq should not be seen in isolation from that wider geopolitical strategy.
As Michael Dunn, former chairman of the Libertarian Party American Defense Caucus, observes, "I tend to view the situation as an opportunity to upset the applecart away from the tenuous 10th-century stability in the region. Destroy the 10th century, and Arabia will have no choice but to enter the 21st century. Who knows what will happen? The point is: the terrorists' world is moving beneath their feet. That can't be good for them."
Military campaigns involve risk. Life is disrupted. People die. Bush's decision to liberate Iraq and the wider strategy of encouraging pro-freedom reforms and moves toward representative government in the region are admittedly a gamble. Those "neoconservatives" who may have thought it would be a "slam dunk" were obviously overly optimistic. I have some mixed feelings of my own about the way the war has been conducted and the apparent looseness of the political goals to be achieved there. But I think it is a gamble that had to be taken now or face worse calamities in the future.
8. Those who opposed U.S. military liberation of Iraq from Saddam Hussein are often among those who sneeringly point out that Kuwait is a "corrupt theocracy" created only a few decades ago. But, regardless, Kuwait is a peaceful regime that does not threaten other countries -- unlike Saddam, who did. Whether Kuwait continues to be ruled by a theocratic monarchy or not, its people did not deserve to be invaded and slaughtered by Saddam's Nazi Baathists. And even under their present government, the Kuwaitis have a much better chance for freedom than the Iraqis had under Saddam. Better a peaceful theocracy on our side than an increasingly dangerous and imperialistic Saddam Hussein! Those were the real choices. There are no laissez-faire republics in the Middle East.
9. If the new government in Iraq becomes an anti-American ally of our enemies in Tehran, and again becomes a threat to peaceful countries in the region (Kuwait, Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc.), then I will have to admit that Bush's gamble will have largely failed or even have backfired. He has evidently decided to take that risk -- that the new Shi-ite government in Iraq might join forces with the Shi-ite regime in Iran to form an even greater enemy of freedom and peace in the region.
If, on the other hand, Iraq becomes a fairly reliable ally of the United States and is no longer a threat to its neighbors or an anti-freedom force in the region, then Bush's gamble will have paid off (big time) as being in the national self-interest of the U.S. and its peaceful allies. The consequences of a successful, freer Iraq will ripple throughout the region and the world to create a better environment in which freedom, capitalism, and peace may develop and defeat the reactionary forces of hate and illegitimate jihadism.
Whatever reservations we may have about the way Operation Iraqi Freedom has been handled (or mishandled), it seems to me that we should all hope for a successful outcome. It is only natural for Americans to question the values and motives of those who want to see American defeat and failure in this endeavor. Yet, the Democrats and their cheerleaders in the old media networks seem to gloat whenever new American casualty figures are released. But, had the U.S. waited even longer to stop Saddam and his military juggernaut, the casualties would have been much higher. If Hitler had been stopped early on instead of having his terrritorial demands appeased by Britain and France with the infamous Munich peace agreement, maybe World War II could have been avoided altogether. At least the war would have been shorter and casualties would have been far fewer. Sometimes the choice is between fighting a "little" war now versus a huge, much bloodier war later on. If war is inevitable, I for one assuredly prefer the former scenario over the latter!
Cultures Aren't Equal by Michael Barone
* * *
Mutually Assured Scandal by Robert Novak
[Anti] Military Operations by Col. Ollie North
* * *
"At $286.4 billion, the highway bill just passed by Congress is the most expensive public works legislation in US history. In addition to funding the interstate highway system and other federal transportation programs, it sets a new record for pork-barrel spending, earmarking $24 billion for a staggering 6,376 pet projects, spread among virtually every congressional district in the land.
"The enormous bill -- 1,752 pages long -- wasn't made available for public inspection until just before it was brought to a vote, and so, as The New York Times noted, 'it is safe to bet that none of the lawmakers, not even the main authors, had read the entire package.' That didn't stop them from voting for it all but unanimously -- 412 to 8 in the House, 91 to 4 in the Senate.
"...When (George W.) Bush ran for president in 2000, he described his Democratic opponent, Vice President Al Gore, as a reckless high-roller who would unbalance the federal budget. 'If the vice president gets elected,' Bush said, 'the era of big government being over is over.' Five years later, what is over is the GOP reputation for fiscal sobriety. Republicans today are simply the other big-government party -- just as capable of squandering public funds, and just as eager to fill barrels with pork, as their fellow-spendthrifts across the aisle." Read complete column- Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby
DEMOCRAT LOSES IN SPECIAL
ELECTION IN OHIO
DESPITE DECEPTIVE CAMPAIGN
The Republican was a moderate -- and Ohio Republicans largely stayed away from the polls to send a message of rebuke to the moderate/liberal Republican leadership in that state. The Democrat challenger, Paul Hackett, had local media ads which tried to make it appear he agreed with President Bush -- especially on the War in Iraq -- even though he called Bush an "S.O.B." in an unguarded moment, and in liberal-left venues, such as Pacifica Radio, he called Bush the most dangerous man on the planet! More dangerous than Osama bin Laden?
Howard Dean and the DNC propaganda squad -- who thought they had a chance to beat the Republicans by fooling the people in this special election -- are now desperately trying to spin the loss as a sort of indirect "win" because of the closeness of the vote totals. Since Democrats cannot fly under their true colors (red and pink), they have to run cynically as something they are not -- persons of principle who stand for America -- instead of the tax and spend liberal socialists they really are. But, thanks to the New Media (especially independent talk radio) and the Internet, fewer and fewer people are being fooled by such deceptive Democrat cross dressing. (These days only the Repubs can get away with that pretense anymore.) But Democrat leaders seem to be convincing themselves that this is the way they can win in the upcoming congressional elections in 2006 and perhaps the presidential election of 2008. Be on the alert for Democrat politicians trying to sound like patriotic, tax-cutting statespersons. Let us hope more and more people continue to see through this dishonest strategy.
Rush Limbaugh Upbraids Republican Leaders for Not Pressing Their Advantage Against the Discredited Reactionary Democrats
He's right, folks..
Republican-Backed Big-Spending Porkathon -- the Price for Getting the Votes to Pass CAFTA (and Then Only Narrowly)
Buying congresscritters' votes with taxpayer money.
HEY, BIG SPENDERS!
by Chuck Muth
from Chuck Muth's News & Views - July 30, 2005
"President Bush had to twist a lot of arms to squeak his Central American Free Trade Agreement through Congress this week, but Republicans are about to make sure he pays for a whole lot more than their chiropractor bills," warns the Wall Street Journal in an editorial Friday. "Having sacrificed to support free trade, the Members prepared for the August recess by throwing themselves a giant spending party.
"Speaker Dennis Hastert had barely waited for dawn to break after the midnight CAFTA vote before he directed the House to pass a $286.4 billion highway bill. He expects Mr. Bush to sign this because it is 'only' $2.4 billion more than the President's 2005 veto limit, which is 'only' $28 billion more than his 2004 veto limit of $256 billion, which was 'only' a 17% increase over the previous six-year highway spending level. 'Only' in Washington could spending so much money be considered an act of fiscal discipline.
"The bill is all about 'jobs, jobs, jobs,' declared Mr. Hastert, and he's right if he's referring to the Members' re-election prospects. The House version alone contained 3,700 special earmarks, doled out liberally across state and party lines. Democrat Jim Clyburn retained another $25 million for his famous 'Bridge to Nowhere,' a project in rural South Carolina that has already sucked up $34 million in federal funds. The California delegation secured $1.4 billion for more than 479 projects, including $2.5 million for freeway landscaping. And ranking Transportation Committee Democrat James Oberstar snatched more than $14 million for Duluth, Minnesota, including $3.2 million for an extension of the longest paved recreational path in the nation."
The editorial concludes that it's probably too much to hope President Bush will whip out the ol' veto pen, noting that "any chance of a highway veto vanished when Mr. Hastert scheduled the bill immediately after CAFTA. At least the Members are leaving town for August; too bad they plan to come back."
So exactly what's in that bloated Transportation bill? Here's a sampling of the "high priority" highway projects the REPUBLICAN-controlled House of Representatives passed this week:
* $220,000 for one line-item for trolley buses in Puerto Rico
* $366,000 for one line-item for intermodal transportation at the Bronx Zoo
* $835,000 for a second line-item for intermodal transportation at the Bronx Zoo
* $4.2 million for intermodal transportation at the Philadelphia Zoo
* $146,000 for a second line-item for trolley buses in Puerto Rico
* $1.3 million for sidewalk lighting and landscaping around Cedar's-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles
* $1.3 million for a daycare center and park-and-ride facility in Champaign, IL
* $1.7 million for an intermodal park and ride facility at the Museum of Latin American Art, Long Beach, CA
* $2 million for a third line-item for intermodal transportation at the Bronx Zoo
* $440,000 for a bike path in Powers, OR
$480,000 for pedestrian and bicycle sidewalks, lighting, and handicapped ramps in Miramar, FL
* $200,000 for trails and bike paths on Bird Mountain, TN
* $960,000 for a bike path in Riverhead, NY
* $2.3 million for landscaping enhancements "for aesthetic purposes" along the Ronald Reagan Freeway, CA
* $240,000 for boardwalks at Pismo Beach, San Luis Obispo, CA
* $1.6 million to enhance the Battery Park bikeway perimeter, New York City
* $200,000 for a historical trolley project in Issaquah, WA
* $200,000 for trails, bike paths, and recreational facilities on Black Mountain, TN
* $235,796 for extensions to the Mesabi Trail, Aurora, MN
* $144,000 for paths and trails at the Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens, OH
* $160,000 for a bike path, Petal, MS
* $200,000 for a bike path "network", Evanston, IL
* $2.9 million for a bike path, Delta Ponds, OR
* $240,000 for bike and pedestrian improvements, Windermere, FL
* $2.4 million for bike trail, Smyrna, TN
* $1.2 million for a bike trail, LaVergne, TN
* $800,000 for regional bike routes on existing highways, Austin, TX
* $480,000 to rehabilitate a historic warehouse, Lyons, NY
* $320,000 for a bike path from San Luis Obispo to Avila Beach, CA
* $280,000 for a bike path, Fairview Park, OH
* $600,000 for horse-riding trails, Jefferson National Forest, VA
* $2 million for a bike trail, Cookeville, TN
* $2 million for an intermodal bikeway, Independence, OH
* $640,000 for bike, pedestrian and other improvements at Georgia Veterans Memorial Park
* $1.2 million for pedestrian bicycle access project, Newark NJ
* $1.2 million for a bike path, East Long-meadow Redstone, MA
* $8 million for the Harlem Hospital parking facility
* $1.8 million for a bike path, Portage, WI
* $2.6 million for pedestrian walkway and bikeway improvements along the NYC Greenway System in Coney Island, NY
* $400,000 for a bike path in Dunkirk, NY
* $532,000 for a bike and pedestrian trail, Gallatin, TN
Tell me again why it's so important to elect Republicans to Congress?
Correcting the CIA by Robert Novak
Robert Novak defends himself by responding to Dem political smears.
Fool Me Eight Times, Shame on Me! by Ann Coulter
Why conservatives & libertarians shouldn't trust Republican Administrations to do the right thing necessarily, especially when it comes to Supreme Court nominations.
Mexican Mercenaries Expand Base Into U.S. -- Washington Times
Mexico's undeclared war against the United States is growing hotter, as Bush does nothing.
How Notto Deal with a Threat by Mona Charen
Improving Our Odds Against Terror
Charlie Krauthammer questions New York City's new random search policy.
Prof. Walter E. Williams Guest Hosts for Vacationing Rush
"Black by popular demand!" While the great El Rushbo is away,Walter Williamswas invited to take over his three-hour nationally syndicated radio program -- the most widely listened to talk radio program in the world -- on Friday. Topics ranged from the poor behavior of Senate Democrats concerning judicial nominations, what the role of a Supreme Court justice should be (take sides or apply the Constitution?), what the Founders thought of democracy, insurance reform, Social Security, the "enumerated powers" bill, how international trade benefits consumers, how to combat jihad fanatics, the use of profiling, and much more.
House Passes CAFTA with 217 to 215 Vote
Two Major Unions Bolt from the AFL-CIO
Members are disgruntled at so much of their dues going to support Democrat Party and liberal-left-wing causes.
Unexploded Bombs Found at Suspect's Residence
NASA Decides to Ground Future Shuttle Missions for the Time Being
U.S. Commander: Troop Withdrawal from Iraq May Begin Next Summer
British Make Major Breakthrough on Botched Bombing Plot
With A Significant Arrest of One Of the Prime Suspects
Shuttle Astronauts Try to Assess Damage from Takeoff
U.S. Renews Mexico Travel Warning as Border Killings Mount
NASA Returns Shuttle to Orbital Space After Being Grounded for Two and a Half Years
* * *
"Over the weekend I saw video of police in New York City conducting
random searches of backpacks, handbags and packages on NYC subways.
There they were, going through the purses of little grey-haired old
ladies, young flat-bellies, and various people that nobody in their
right minds would think might be carrying a bomb. When are we going
to get serious about this? Resources are limited, so those resources
need to be applied as efficiently as possible. That means profiling!
We are going to end up getting someone killed with this asinine
"If you want to save lives, if you want a better chance of preventing
an attack, you look for people who resemble those who have pledged to
kill us. You look for Arabs and anyone who looks like they might be
from the Middle East. You search Muslims. If they don't like it,
remind them of just who it is who brought this situation to bear.
Tell them that when their mad Mullahs stop encouraging impressionable
young Arabs to kill themselves in suicide attacks, they just might be
able to get on a subway train again without intrusive searches."- Talk show host Neal Boortz
Zig's new book The Death of Free Speech: How Our Broken National Dialogue Has Killed The Truth And Divided America is now out and for sale. If you cannot find it at your local bookstore, it can be ordered from his website: http://www.johnziegler.com.
Lance Armstrong Ends Career With Unprecedented 7th Tour de France Triumph! A True Champion Retires from the Race.
Sunsets: Voting Against Making Emergency Powers Permanent
Congressmen Ron Paul & Dana Rohrabacher explain why emergency powers granted to government for prosecuting the war against terrorism should not be made a permanent fixture of American life and why sunset provisions for the Patriot Act should be restored..(Ever hear of the "Victory Tax" -- income-tax withholding -- that was supposed to last only until the war was over? That was sixty years ago and it is not only still with us but much worse!)
Russia's secret agency FSB (ex-KGB) trained Al Qaeda's al-Zawahiri
Why Do They Hate Us? Not Because of Iraq by Oliver Roy
It is rare to find anything worthwhile out of the New York Times; its pro-Democrat "liberal" establishment bias pervades its pages so thoroughly that it increasingly lacks credibility and cannot be depended on for unslanted news or analysis.. Yet, this article is exceptional enough to be worth the read.
Charlie Krauthammer's Cogent Analysis of the Roberts Nomination
CAFTA Threatens Sovereignty: Why 1000 pages to describe "free trade"? Answer: it's about control, not freedom say AG Weekly
July 21, 2005
SOUTER IN ROBERTS' CLOTHING?
A Healthy Note of Caution from Ann Coulter
After pretending to consider various women and minorities for the Supreme Court these past few weeks, President Bush decided to disappoint all the groups he had just ginned up and nominate a white male.
So all we know about him for sure is that he can't dance and he probably doesn't know who Jay-Z is. Other than that, he is a blank slate. Tabula rasa. Big zippo. Nada. Oh, yeah ... We also know he's argued cases before the Supreme Court. Big deal; so has Larry Flynt's attorney.
But unfortunately, other than that that, we don't know much about John Roberts. Stealth nominees have never turned out to be a pleasant surprise for conservatives. Never. Not ever.
Since the announcement, court-watchers have been like the old Kremlinologists from Soviet days looking for clues as to what kind of justice Roberts will be.
Will he let us vote?
Does he live in a small, rough-hewn cabin in the woods of New Hampshire and avoid "womenfolk"?
Does he trust democracy? Or will he make all the important decisions for us and call them "constitutional rights"?
It means absolutely nothing that NARAL and Planned Parenthood attack him: They also attacked Sandra Day O'Connor, Anthony Kennedy and David Hackett Souter.
The only way a Supreme Court nominee could win the approval of NARAL and Planned Parenthood would be to actually perform an abortion during his confirmation hearing, live, on camera, and preferably a partial-birth one.
It means nothing that Roberts wrote briefs arguing for the repeal of Roe v. Wade when he worked for Republican administrations. He was arguing on behalf of his client, the United States of America. Roberts has specifically disassociated himself from those cases, dropping a footnote to a 1994 law review article that said:
"In the interest of full disclosure, the author would like to point out that as Deputy Solicitor General for a portion of the 1992-'93 term, he was involved in many of the cases discussed below. In the interest of even fuller disclosure, he would also like to point out that his views as a commentator on those cases do not necessarily reflect his views as an advocate for his former client, the United States."
This would have been the legal equivalent, after O.J.'s acquittal, of Johnnie Cochran saying: "Hey, I never said the guy was innocent. I was just doing my job."
And it makes no difference that conservatives in the White House are assuring us Roberts can be trusted. We got the exact same assurances from officials working for the last president Bush about David Hackett Souter.
I believe their exact words were, "Read our lips; Souter's a reliable conservative."
From the theater of the absurd category, the Republican National Committee's "talking points" on Roberts provide this little tidbit:
"In the 1995 case of Barry v. Little, Judge Roberts argued — free of charge — before the D.C. Court of Appeals on behalf of a class of the neediest welfare recipients, challenging a termination of benefits under the District's Public Assistance Act of 1982."
I'm glad to hear the man has a steady work record, but how did this make it to the top of his resume?
Bill Clinton goes around bragging that he passed welfare reform, which was, admittedly, the one public policy success of his entire administration (passed by the Republican Congress). But now apparently Republicans want to pretend we're the party of welfare queens! Soon the RNC will be boasting that Republicans want to raise your taxes and surrender in the war on terrorism, too.
Finally, let's ponder the fact that Roberts has gone through 50 years on this planet without ever saying anything controversial. That's just unnatural.
By contrast, I held out for three months, tops, before dropping my first rhetorical bombshell, which I think was about Goldwater.
It's especially unnatural for someone who is smart, and there's no question but that Roberts is smart.
If a smart and accomplished person goes this long without expressing an opinion, he'd better be pursuing the Miss America title.
Apparently, Roberts decided early on that he wanted to be on the Supreme Court and that the way to do that was not to express a personal opinion on anything to anybody ever. It's as if he is from some space alien sleeper cell. Maybe the space aliens are trying to help us, but I wish we knew that.
If the Senate were in Democrat hands, Roberts would be perfect. But why on earth would Bush waste a nomination on a person who is a complete blank slate when we have a majority in the Senate!
We also have a majority in the House, state legislatures, state governorships, and have won five of the last seven presidential elections — seven of the last 10!
We're the Harlem Globetrotters now — why do we have to play the Washington Generals every week?
Conservatism is sweeping the nation, we have a fully functioning alternative media, we're ticked off and ready to avenge Robert Bork ... and Bush nominates a Rorschach blot.
Even as they are losing voters, Democrats don't hesitate to nominate reliable left-wing lunatics like Ruth Bader Ginsburg to lifetime tenure on the high court. And the vast majority of Americans loathe her views.
As I've said before, if a majority of Americans agreed with liberals on abortion, gay marriage, pornography, criminals' rights and property rights — liberals wouldn't need the Supreme Court to give them everything they want through invented "constitutional" rights invisible to everyone but People for the American Way. It's always good to remind voters that Democrats are the party of abortion, sodomy and atheism, and nothing presents an opportunity to do so like a Supreme Court nomination.
The Democrats' own polls showed voters are no longer fooled by claims that the Democrats are trying to block "judges who would roll back civil rights." Borking is over.
And Bush responds by nominating a candidate who will allow Democrats to avoid fighting on their weakest ground — substance. He has given us a Supreme Court nomination that will placate no liberals and should please no conservatives.
Maybe Roberts will contravene the sordid history of "stealth nominees" and be the Scalia or Thomas that Bush promised us when he was asking for our votes. Or maybe he won't. The Supreme Court shouldn't be a game of Russian roulette.
COPYRIGHT 2005 ANN COULTER
No One Hurt in Coordinated London Blasts; Not All Bombs Went Off
* * *
House Votes to Extend Patriot Act
JOHN G. ROBERTS NOMINATED TO REPLACE O'CONNOR
Conservatives Relieved, Cautiously Optimistic
Described as a "pragmatist" (not good) by some, a "conservative" (better, depending on what it means) by others, Judge Roberts has a relatively short trail of decisions by which to judge what he is likely to do on the Court. President Bush could have done worse, it seems. But we probably won't know for years how good (or not) Roberts will turn out to be. Talk show maven Laura Ingraham is obviously happy:
All we can say is: thank you, Mr. President. Judge John Roberts is a superb choice for the Supreme Court. President Bush did not play p.c. politics with his selection. He did not cave to those who hoped for the first Hispanic justice (La Raza, et al.), or a woman (his wife!), or a "consensus nominee" (the Dems), or a "balancer" from "outside the federal courts of appeals" (Specter). Instead, President Bush picked someone who is a reliable judicial conservative--not a blank slate a la David Souter or someone who will "evolve" like Anthony Kennedy. Well done!~Laura Ingraham
While pro-abortion activists claim to be afraid the new justice could overturn Roe v. Wade, this is highly unlikely given the long-term composition of the Court. However, it is true Roberts is married to the former Executive Vice President of a group called Feminists for Life. This gives some hope to pro-lifers who would have preferred Luttig, Jones, or Garza as the nominee. As one anti-abortion partisan explained, "This matters, and it cannot be underestimated. Look at Ginny Thomas and Maureen Scalia - one does not sleep in the same bed as someone who has dedicated themselves to this cause without ramifications. The strong opinions of the New York Times will not beat out the strong opinions of a dedicated spouse."
No More Souters, Please! -- Wall Street Journal
* * *
THE GROWING THREAT OF ANTI-US MILITARISM
Pentagon Warns of Chinese Military Buildup by Robert Burns, AP Military Writer
Chinese Build-up Includes Long-Range Missiles, Jets, Warships
State Legislatures Seek to Blunt Expanded Eminent Domain Ruling
* * *
Behind The Lines
Dr. Jack Wheeler
It was Jeane Kirkpatrick at the 1984 Republican Convention in Dallas who identified the Liberal Democrat compulsion to “blame America first.” In any confrontation between America and any other country or disaffected group, liberals could be trusted to say it was their own country’s fault.
This compulsion seems to be a defining characteristic of liberals to this day, from Baghdad Jim McDermott (D-WA) to Dick Turban Durbin (D-IL) to Howard Dean and Teddy Kennedy. What’s not widely recognized is how this compulsion has infected the brains of certain conservatives.
A case in point is how Pat Buchanan and his American Conservative magazine are swooning, along with the New York Times and the Liberal Media, over a new book – Dying to Win -- by a goofy University of Chicago professor named Robert Pape.
In an interview in the magazine’s current issue, Pape goes to great lengths to demonstrate perverse ignorance of what he calls “the logic of suicide terrorism” (the subtitle of his book). Let’s start with his geographic illiteracy.
He asserts that Osama Bin Laden believes in a “grand plan” of the US: “Use combat forces to conquer Iraq, break it into three pieces, give a piece of it to Israel so that Israel could enlarge its country, and then do the same thing to Saudi Arabia.”
Professor Pape’s hatred of Israel blinds him so much he cannot read a map: Israel has no border with either Iraq nor Saudi Arabia. Yet, he continues: “As you can see, we are fulfilling (Bin Laden’s) prediction.” If this isn’t goofy enough (sho’ nuff, prof, ask any of our soldiers in Iraq and they’ll tell you their mission is to break Iraq apart…), try this:
“Now, of course, today we have 150,000 troops on the Arabian Peninsula…” Since the only troops we have in Saudi anymore are about 500, and small numbers in Oman, Yemen, and Qatar, this means Iraq is in the Arabian Peninsula. Who knew?
Pape’s thesis, so eagerly embraced by Buchanan, is that Islamic fundamentalism is not the cause of Moslem suicide bombing – religion has nothing to do with it, because after all, suicide bombing was invented by the Hindu “Tamil Tigers” in Ceylon and only copied by the Palestinians and other Moslems. Moslem terrorism and suicide bombing is rather, “a response to foreign occupation.”
It’s all our fault, we brought the terrorism on ourselves – America and the Jews. If America would only take its soldiers out of Iraq, no Moslem would think of blowing up 18 Iraqi children in Baghdad as one of them did today. If Israel would just cease to exist then no Moslem from the “Occupied West Bank” would have to blow himself up trying to kill Jews in Netanya as happened yesterday.
Buchanan entitled a paean to Pape in the virulently anti-Semitic/anti-American website Antiwar.com, Why Are They Killing Us?. His answer: “The 9/11 terrorists were over here because we were over there. They are not trying to convert us. They are killing us to drive us out of their countries.”
Moslem terrorists slaughtered thousands of Americans and destroyed the World Trade Towers here in New York because there were American soldiers “there” (Saudi at the time, not occupying but at the express desire of the Saudi government for protection from Saddam, a neighboring Moslem dictator). It’s all our fault. Blame America first.
Maybe Buchanan can now fly to London and give a speech about British born and raised kids with Pakistani parents becoming suicide bombers because they’re upset about British troops in Iraq – which of course has nothing to do with their being Moslem fanatics.
What would drive conservatives to such craziness? Let’s not pussy-foot around and face the core ugliness squarely. The cause is anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism trumps patriotism to America. Hatred of Israel causes a desire for America’s defeat. Blame-America-First Conservatives hate Israel more than they love America, they hate Jews more than they love their country.
There is no other excuse for espousing the views of some crackpot who thinks the War in Iraq is being fought so Israel can occupy Mesopotamia.
Ever wonder why so many Jews remain Democrats? Because they remember the days when Republicans wouldn’t allow them to join their country clubs. Those days may seem long ago – but not to Jews who see how many Republicans tolerate an anti-Semitic screed that dares to call itself “American Conservative,” rather than denouncing it as neither.
Republican conservatives need tolerate this travesty no longer. And until they cease doing so, Jews in droves will remain leery of the political party and the political ideology they should otherwise embrace: pro-capitalist, pro-liberty, pro-individual.
So watch for a growing number of conservative leaders to demand that “American Conservative” change its name and stop attempting to hijack conservatism. “Blame America First Conservative” should be and must be an oxymoron.
Sorry, Charley, But That's
Economist Mark Skousen Rebuts Age-Old Myths & Fallacies
Repeated by Neo-Populist Columnist Charley Reese
By Mark Skousen
"All economic transactions involve a win-lose proposition. Every gain involves a loss."
--Charley Reese, Orlando Sentinel, May 22, 1994
Lord Acton once said, "There is no error so monstrous that it fails to find defenders among the ablest men." That was my reaction to a series of articles recently written by national columnist Charley Reese. Over the years, Reese has made a reputation as a strong defender of individual rights against a growing Leviathan, the federal government. So it was all the more perplexing when I read some of his claims about free-market capitalism:
"Two people can't eat the same bean. That's the essence of economics."
"All economic transactions involve a win-lose proposition."
"The historically visible trend [in capitalist societies] is always for the rich to get richer and the poor to get poorer."
"Only the youngest, the strongest can put stock in pure capitalism."
Statements like these were demolished years ago in Leonard Read's classic little book, Cliches of Socialism, which was recently updated by Mark Spangler under the new title, Cliches of Politics (Foundation for Economic Education, 1994). Unfortunately, some cliches die slowly.
Let me respond to each one of these commonly held criticisms of the free market.
Voluntary Exchange Is Win-Win
First, is the free market similar to a sporting event, where one team wins and the other loses? Not at all. In every voluntary transaction, both the buyer and seller gain. Here's a simple proof: Suppose I sell an apple to a student for $1. The student buys the apple because he would rather have the apple than the dollar bill. Thus, by purchasing the apple, he improves his situation. On the other hand, I sell the apple because I'd rather have the dollar bill than the apple. I too am better off.
In Das Capital, Karl Marx popularized the view that all exchanges under free enterprise capitalism involved an equality of values and therefore one person's gain must be another person's loss. But now we see that just the opposite is true: All transactions in a voluntary exchange involve an inequality of values. In fact, without an inequality of values, no voluntary exchange would ever occur.
Because of an inequality of values, both the buyer and seller gain in every transaction. The only exception to this law is when fraud or deception is involved. When that happens, one party gains at the other's expense. But in a voluntary exchange, where full and honest information is revealed, everyone benefits.
The Essence of Capitalism
Reese says that the essence of capitalism is contained in the statement, "Two people can't eat the same bean." Not so fast, Charley. A free market is not just an "either-or" proposition. Capitalism is also a highly cooperative system. If there are two people and only one bean, the free market provides a better alternative: plant the bean and harvest enough beans to feed both people! That's the true essence of capitalism.
Granted, natural resources are limited. But the beauty of free enterprise is its ability to multiply these resources into goods and services that people can use to increase their standard of living. What really matters is not so much the amount of resources in their natural state but the supply of economically useable natural resources, which are limited only to the extent of our know-how and physical ability to transform these inputs into useable wealth. In that sense, there is virtually no limit to further advances in our standard of living. In reality, nature isn't scarce, only the productive capacity of labor to change nature into real wealth is.
Capitalism Can Improve Everyone's Standard of Living
Finally, Charley Reese is wrong in suggesting that capitalism breeds inequality, that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Under the free market, the rich get richer and the poor get richer too. Historically, citizens of capitalistic nations have enjoyed higher real wages and steady advances in the quantity, quality and variety of goods and services. Only government, the politics of coercion, causes a decline in the standard of living.
Moreover, the free market does not only benefit the young and the strong, as Charley Reese suggests, but the weak, the poor, and the discriminated. Contrary to popular belief, capitalism is not a dog-eat-dog jungle where only the fittest survive. As the classical economist David Ricardo demonstrated, the market is characterized by comparative advantage, not just absolute advantage in the division of labor. Therefore, opportunities abound for people of all abilities, talents, religions and races. The less fortunate may not earn a high wage, but they can and do benefit from the blessings of a technologically advanced capitalistic society. Today practically everyone, rich and poor, enjoys the benefits of electrical power, the telephone, the automobile, television and radio, books and newspapers, and a myriad other goods and services. Such everyday products were available only to the wealthy less than a century ago.
A free society is by no means perfect. People make mistakes, employers sometimes take advantage of workers, sometimes workers shortchange their employers, and salesmen may deceive the public. But the strength of the market is that bad business, deceptive practices, and shoddy merchandise are constantly being overwhelmed by good business, accurate information, and quality products. On net balance, there is no substitute for the free-enterprise system.
Hillary Clinton, Charles Schumer Nix Border Security Bill
* * *
WILL BUSH BREAK HIS PROMISE
AND BETRAY HIS SUPPORTERS
JUST TO APPEASE SENATE DEMS?
by Sam Wells
George Bush has repeatedly promised that he would nominate for the Supreme Court judges with the judicial perspective ("conservative" or "originalist") similar to that of Clarence Thomas or Antonin Scalia. He certainly gave his conservative and libertarian supporters some satisfaction and hope when he nominated Janice Rogers Brown (described by some as a libertarian conservative) to the federal appeals bench -- for which position she was finally confirmed by a recalcitrant Senate. This would never have happened under a President Kerry or Albert Gore.
Rush Limbaugh recommends that the President now pick Janice Rogers Brown to replace retiring justice Sandra Day O'Connor. This would be a brilliant move on the part of President Bush -- if he would only do it. Because Brown has already been confirmed for the federal bench, it would be difficult for left-liberal Senate Democrats to reasonably argue that she is not qualified for the Supreme Court. Of course they would oppose her anyway. Since when have Senate Democrats been reasonable, after all? As long as they allow such hot-air buffoons as Teddy Kennedy of Massachusetts or Barbara Boxer of California to bloviate irrationally and prevarigate promiscuously on the floor of the U.S. Senate, there is no semblence of rationality or decorum among Senate Democrats anyway. And Minority Leader Harry Reid is no less nasty and dishonorable than his corrupt predecessor Tom Daschle. Why the Republican majority in the Senate continues to help the Democrats pretend that their lies hold any weight is a question that baffles many a conservative Republican.
At any rate, it is clear that the Democrat leaders in the Senate -- along with their allies in the moribund mainstream media -- will viciously smear and oppose anyone Bush picks who is even halfway decent. The battle is shaping up to be big and nasty. The Dems realize, even if the flat-footed, limp-Fristed Republicans may not, that this battle for the SCOTUS is potentially more important than even who becomes President of the United States. This is because the Supreme Court and the federal courts in general have been allowed to usurp far more power ever imagined they would have by the Founding Fathers. All one has to do is to look at the implications of the recent and notorious Kelo vs New London decision which was the virtual coup de grace or final destruction of private property rights in America. If rational, pro-Constitution judges should manage to get on the Court and replace O'Connor and Rehnquist, that and many other pernicious decisions could be overturned and freedom restored in America.
As Lenin said, the goal of "bulding socialism" is always and everywhere the ultimate destruction of all private property. And as Ayn Rand pointed out (and as our founding fathers understood so well), without private property rights, no other rights are possible and freedom would be only a memory.
The Democrats are so desperate to keep their pro-socialist gains from being reversed that they will do almost anything to stop any good conservative or constitutionalist from getting on the Supreme Court. Chuck Schumer and other Senate Dems are even arrogantly demanding they have a role in helping the President pick the nominees -- even though this is well beyond the Senate's role as specified in the Constitution. And they are the minority. (It's as if the Dems still think they are in the majority and the Repubs act as if they are still the minority!)
While they are sharpening their knives and loading their AK-47s for a big and nasty battle over who gets picked, President Bush is cordially having Senate Democrats over to the White House for "consulting" sessions and treating them as if THEY were his most important political supporters! It seems to me that Bush should be helping the Senate Republicans explain to the public why the Dems are being disengenuous instead of kissing Democrat ass. The President needs to help Republicans generate public pressure on the Senate to get Frist to institute the "Constitutional Option" (long overdue) of a simple up-or-down vote on presidential nominees!
We need justices who will make decisions according to the Constitution, and the original intent behind that document and the pro-freedom, pro-property, limited-government philosophy of the Founders which underlies it, and not ignore such crucial parts of it such as the Second, Ninth, and Tenth Amendments -- or the other amendments of the Bill of Rights for that matter.
We can only hope that he will not do as his father did before him when he (Bush 41) caved in to pressure from Senate Democrats to raise taxes, thus breaking his solemn promise "Read my lips: no new taxes!" and betraying those who voted for him. Likewise today, there are many who voted for George Dubya Bush only because of the crucial need to have a President who will choose federal judges and (especially) Supreme Court justices who will uphold and defend the Constitution and thus counter-balance the extreme leftism of Ginzberg, Stevens, Kennedy, Souter, and Breyer. If Bush winds up selecting someone who disappoints -- as Souter and Kennedy have -- he may face a grass-roots rebellion from within his own Republican Party.
Jefferson versus Nancy Pelosi
and Today's Corrupt Power-Hungry Democrats
"(T)he opinion which gives to the judges the right to decide what laws are constitutional and what not, not only for themselves in their own sphere of action but for the Legislature and Executive also in their spheres, would make the Judiciary a despotic branch."- Thomas Jefferson
"If the policy of the government upon vital questions affecting the whole people is to be irrevocably fixed by decisions of the Supreme Court...the people will have ceased to be their own rulers."- Abraham Lincoln
"(Kelo v. New London) is a decision of the Supreme Court. So this is almost as if God has spoken."- House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiSan Fransicko Democrat
* * *
Libertarian Republican Congressman Ron Paul Speaks Out Against the Anti-Political Action Ostrich Anarchists
"The Kelo (v. New London) case also demonstrates that local government can be as tyrannical as centralized government. Decentralized power is always preferable, of course, since it's easier to fight city hall than Congress. But government power is ever and always dangerous, and must be zealously guarded against. Most people in New London, Connecticut, like most people in America, would rather not involve themselves in politics. The reality is that politics involves itself with us whether we like it or not. We can bury our heads in the sand and hope that things don't get too bad, or we can fight back when government treats us as its servant rather than its master."
- Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), Texas Straight Talk, 7/4/05
* * *
Justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s Retirement Creates an Opportunity for a Return to Traditional Interpretation of U.S. Constitution from Judicial Watch.org
MIssion Implausible by Ann Coulter
Ann sets the record straight about the phony Rove scandal the Dems are so desperate to pursue.
Debunking Eight Anti-War
Myths about the Conflict in Iraq
by John Hawkins
1) George Bush lied about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. This is a charge that has been repeated ad nauseum by opponents of the war, but the claim that Bush "lied" about stockpiles of WMDs doesn't hold up to the least bit of scrutiny.
Once you understand one crucial fact, that numerous prominent Democrats with access to intelligence data also openly declared and obviously believed that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, it becomes nearly impossible for a rational person to believe that Bush lied about WMDs in Iraq. We're not talking about small fry or just proponents of the war either. The aforementioned Democrats include Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Al Gore, John Kerry, John Edwards, Robert Byrd, Henry Waxman, Tom Daschle, and Nancy Pelosi among many, many others. Just to hammer the point home, here's a quote from the 800 pound gorilla of the Democratic Party, Hillary Clinton, that was made on Oct 8, 2002:
"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including Al Qaeda members, though there is apparently no evidence of his involvement in the terrible events of September 11, 2001. It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons. Should he succeed in that endeavor, he could alter the political and security landscape of the Middle East, which as we know all too well affects American security."
To believe that George Bush lied about WMDs is to believe that there is a vast conspiracy to lie about WMDs that goes to the highest level of both parties & that stretches across both the pro and anti-war movements.
It's just not possible -- and that's before we even consider the numerous other pieces of exculpating evidence like: all the non-American intelligence agencies that also believed Saddam had WMDs, CIA Director George Tenet famously saying it was a "'slam-dunk' that Hussein possessed the banned weapons", the once secret Downing Street Memo which certainly proves that our allies in Britain believed Saddam had WMDs...
"For instance, what were the consequences, if Saddam used WMD on day one, or if Baghdad did not collapse and urban warfighting began? You said that Saddam could also use his WMD on Kuwait. Or on Israel, added the Defence Secretary."
...and of course, that we did find warheads designed to carry chemical warfare agents and artillery shells filled with mustard gas & sarin (even though they were small in number and weren't recently made).
When you add it all up, it appears that George Bush, like a lot of other people, was wrong about Saddam Hussein having stockpiles of WMDs. But without question, he did not lie about it.
2) A study released in March of 2003 by a British medical journal, the Lancet, showed that 100,000 civilians had been killed as a result of the US invasion. To be perfectly frank, it's hard to see how anyone who has even a passing familiarity with statistics could take Lancet's numbers seriously. Fred Kaplan from Slate explains:
"The authors of a peer-reviewed study, conducted by a survey team from Johns Hopkins University, claim that about 100,000 Iraqi civilians have died as a result of the war. Yet a close look at the actual study, published online today by the British medical journal the Lancet, reveals that this number is so loose as to be meaningless.
The report's authors derive this figure by estimating how many Iraqis died in a 14-month period before the U.S. invasion, conducting surveys on how many died in a similar period after the invasion began (more on those surveys later), and subtracting the difference. That difference—the number of "extra" deaths in the post-invasion period—signifies the war's toll. That number is 98,000. But read the passage that cites the calculation more fully:
We estimate there were 98,000 extra deaths (95% CI 8000-194 000) during the post-war period.
Readers who are accustomed to perusing statistical documents know what the set of numbers in the parentheses means. For the other 99.9 percent of you, I'll spell it out in plain English—which, disturbingly, the study never does. It means that the authors are 95 percent confident that the war-caused deaths totaled some number between 8,000 and 194,000. (The number cited in plain language—98,000—is roughly at the halfway point in this absurdly vast range.)
This isn't an estimate. It's a dart board.
Imagine reading a poll reporting that George W. Bush will win somewhere between 4 percent and 96 percent of the votes in this Tuesday's election. You would say that this is a useless poll and that something must have gone terribly wrong with the sampling. The same is true of the Lancet article: It's a useless study; something went terribly wrong with the sampling."
Bingo! What Lancet was in effect saying was that they believed 98,000 civilians died, but they might have been off by roughly 90,000 people or so in either direction.
Moreover, other sources at the time were coming in with numbers that were a tiny fraction of the 98,000 figure that the Lancet settled on. From a New York Times article on the Lancet study:
"The 100,000 estimate immediately came under attack. Foreign Secretary Jack Straw of Britain questioned the methodology of the study and compared it with an Iraq Health Ministry figure that put civilian fatalities at less than 4,000. Other critics referred to the findings of the Iraq Body Count project, which has constructed a database of war-related civilian deaths from verified news media reports or official sources like hospitals and morgues.
That database recently placed civilian deaths somewhere between 14,429 and 16,579, the range arising largely from uncertainty about whether some victims were civilians or insurgents. But because of its stringent conditions for including deaths in the database, the project has quite explicitly said, ''Our own total is certain to be an underestimate.''
Via GlobalSecurity.org, here's another Iraqi civilian death estimate:
"On 20 October 2003 the Project on Defense Alternatives estimated that between 10,800 and 15,100 Iraqis were killed in the war. Of these, between 3,200 and 4,300 were noncombatants -- that is: civilians who did not take up arms."
Given all that, how any informed person can buy into Lancet's numbers is simply beyond me.
3) The Bush Administration claimed Iraq was responsible for 9/11. It's always difficult to prove a negative, but that simply never happened. (The Bush Administration never made this claim ascribed to it.)
Many people may believe this was the case because in "Fahrenheit 9/11," Michael Moore truncated a comment by Condi Rice in order to deliberately give viewers of his movie that false impression. Here's the quote as it appeared in the film:
"There is a tie between Iraq and what happened on 9/11"
Now here's the full quote:
"Oh, indeed there is a tie between Iraq and what happened on 9/11. It’s not that Saddam Hussein was somehow himself and his regime involved in 9/11, but, if you think about what caused 9/11, it is the rise of ideologies of hatred that lead people to drive airplanes into buildings in New York."
Setting aside Moore's little deceit, there just aren't any quotations I've ever seen from anyone in the Bush administration saying that Saddam was responsible for 9/11. That's why, in a piece called "Answering 50 Frequently Asked Questions About The War On Terrorism," which incidentally was written about a week before the war began, I wrote this:
The Bush administration has never claimed that Iraq was involved in 9/11...
Furthermore, after the war had begun, in September of 2003, President Bush himself publicly & explicitly said:
"We have no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with the 11 September attacks."
It doesn't get much clearer than that.
4) The war in Iraq was actually planned by people like Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and Paul Wolfowitz back in 1998 at a think tank called the Project for the New American Century. The problem with trying to claim that the war in Iraq was preordained during some 1998 PNAC meeting is that the United States government has been trying to find a way to get rid of Saddam Hussein since the Gulf War. In an interview I did with him back in January of 2004, David Frum, went into detail on this subject:
"The idea that overthrowing Saddam Hussein sprung out of the minds of a few people in Washington forgets an awful lot of history. In the 2000 election, both candidates spoke openly about the need to deal with Saddam Hussein. Al Gore was actually more emphatic on the topic than George Bush was. In 1998, Congress passed and President Clinton signed the Iraq Liberation Act. Just to show how conspiratorial they were, they put it in the Congressional record. In 1995, the CIA tried to organize a coup against Saddam Hussein and it failed. The coup was secret, but it has been written about in 5 or 6 books that I know of. In 1991, representatives of President George H. W. Bush went on the radio and urged the Iraqi people to rise up against Saddam Hussein. So America's policy on Saddam has been consistent. What we have been arguing about for years are the methods. First, we tried to encourage a rebellion in Iraq, that didn't work. Then we tried coups; that didn't work. Then in 1998, we tried funding Iraqi opposition. That might have worked, but the money never actually got appropriated. Then, ultimately we tried direct military power. The idea that Saddam should go has been the policy of the United States since 1991."
The reality is just as Frum pointed out: overthrowing Saddam Hussein by hook or crook was the de facto policy of the US government for more than a decade before the war in Iraq and the disagreement was over how to do it. That argument was settled in many people's minds by 9/11, not by people conspiring in a think tank back in 1998.
5) The war on terror has nothing to do with Iraq. This is another historical rewrite. The reality is that the pro-war movement in this country since 9/11 has plainly spoken of dealing with Saddam Hussein as part of the war on terrorism almost from the very beginning. Here's George Bush in a speech given on 9/20/2001:
"Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes. Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign unlike any other we have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes visible on TV and covert operations secret even in success.
We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place until there is no refuge or no rest.
And we will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation in every region now has a decision to make: Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists.
From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime."
Iraq certainly was a state that harbored and supported terrorists and the approach Bush discussed, the Bush Doctrine, was adopted and talked about often in relation to Iraq during the lead up to the war. As proof, look to a column called "Answering 50 Frequently Asked Questions About The War On Terrorism" that I wrote back on March 13, 2003:
Why are we going to invade Iraq? Nine days after 9/11, George Bush said,
"(W)e will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation in every region now has a decision to make Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists. From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime."
That definition fits Iraq and since they happened to be the easiest nation to make a case against at the UN and in the court of World Opinion, they were our next logical target after Afghanistan -- although they're not our last target."
The war on terrorism cannot be won as long as there are terrorist supporting states out there. So one way or the other, we need to get those rogue regimes out of the business of supporting terrorist groups of international reach. Saddam led one of those regimes and now, happily, he's gone -- perhaps before the US was hit with an Iraqi based terrorist attack:
"I can confirm that after the events of September 11, 2001, and up to the military operation in Iraq, Russian special services and Russian intelligence several times received ... information that official organs of Saddam's regime were preparing terrorist acts on the territory of the United States and beyond its borders, at U.S. military and civilian locations." -- Russian President Vladimir Putin as quoted by CNN on June 18, 2004
Even John Kerry, the flip-flopping Democratic candidate for President last year, seemed to at least agree that the fate of Iraq was crucial to the war on terror:
"Iraq may not be the war on terror itself, but it is critical to the outcome of the war on terror, and therefore any advance in Iraq is an advance forward in that and I disagree with the Governor [Howard Dean]." -- John Kerry, 12/15/03
Kerry even pointed out that he thought Saddam might give WMDs to terrorists:
"I would disagree with John McCain that it’s the actual weapons of mass destruction he may use against us, it’s what he may do in another invasion of Kuwait or in a miscalculation about the Kurds or a miscalculation about Iran or particularly Israel. Those are the things that - that I think present the greatest danger. He may even miscalculate and slide these weapons off to terrorist groups to invite them to be a surrogate to use them against the United States. It’s the miscalculation that poses the greatest threat." -- John Kerry, "Face The Nation", 9/15/02
Now if even John Kerry of all people is willing to admit that Iraq is "critical to the outcome of the war on terror" and that Saddam was the kind of guy who might use terrorist groups to attack the US, we should be able to at least agree at this point that it's not the least bit disingenuous to suggest that Iraq is an important part of the war on terrorism.
6) Saddam Hussein had no ties to terrorism. It's amazing to me that today in 2005, people are still trotting out that oft-disproven quip. Christopher Hitchens was also apparently surprised when Ron Reagan, Jr. made a similar assertion recently and you may find his response to be most enlightening:
"CH: Do you know nothing about the subject at all? Do you wonder how Mr. Zarqawi got there under the rule of Saddam Hussein? Have you ever heard of Abu Nidal?
RR: Well, I'm following the lead of the 9/11 Commission, which...
CH: Have you ever heard of Abu Nidal, the most wanted man in the world, who was sheltered in Baghdad? The man who pushed Leon Klinghoffer off the boat, was sheltered by Saddam Hussein. The man who blew up the World Trade Center in 1993 was sheltered by Saddam Hussein, and you have the nerve to say that terrorism is caused by resisting it? And by deposing governments that endorse it? ... At this stage, after what happened in London yesterday?...
RR: Zarqawi is not an envoy of Saddam Hussein, either.
CH: Excuse me. When I went to interview Abu Nidal, then the most wanted terrorist in the world, in Baghdad, he was operating out of an Iraqi government office. He was an arm of the Iraqi State, while being the most wanted man in the world. The same is true of the shelter and safe house offered by the Iraqi government, to the murderers of Leon Klinghoffer, and to Mr. Yassin, who mixed the chemicals for the World Trade Center bombing in 1993. How can you know so little about this, and be occupying a chair at the time that you do?"
Mr. Hitchens is entirely correct. Saddam provided "safe haven" for terrorists with "global reach." Among them were terrormaster Abu Nidal, Abdul Rahman Yassin, one of the conspirators in the 1993 WTC bombing, "Khala Khadr al-Salahat, the man who reputedly made the bomb for the Libyans that brought down Pan Am Flight 103 over...Scotland,"Abu Abbas, mastermind of the October 1985 Achille Lauro hijacking and murder of Leon Klinghoffer," & "Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, formerly the director of an al Qaeda training base in Afghanistan" who is now believed to be leading Al-Qaeda's forces in Iraq.
Without question, Saddam Hussein had extensive ties to terrorism.
7) Saddam Hussein had no ties to Al-Qaeda. A couple of quotes by the 9/11 Commission, which were often used out of context during the polarizing 2004 election cycle, have fueled the ridiculous claim that Saddam Hussein had no ties with Al-Qaeda. Here's an excerpt from an article at MSNBC called "9/11 panel sees no link between Iraq, al-Qaida," that should give you a good idea of the anti-war spin that was put on the Commission's comments:
"It said that reports of subsequent contacts between Iraq and al-Qaida after bin Laden had returned to Afghanistan “do not appear to have resulted in a collaborative relationship,” and added that two unidentified senior bin Laden associates "have adamantly denied that any ties existed between al-Qaida and Iraq."
The report, the 15th released by the commission staff, concluded, “We have no credible evidence that Iraq and al-Qaida cooperated on attacks against the United States.”
However, the spin doesn't match the reality.
What the 9/11 Commission was trying to get across was that there was no evidence that Saddam and Al-Qaeda collaborated on specific attacks, not that they didn't have a working relationship. 9/11 Commission Vice-Chairman (and former Democratic Congressman) Lee Hamiliton echoed exactly that point in comments that were largely ignored because they didn't fit the anti-war storyline some people were pushing:
"The vice president is saying, I think, that there were connections between Al Qaeda and the Saddam Hussein government. We don't disagree with that. What we have said is what the governor (Commission Chairman Thomas Kean) just said, we don't have any evidence of a cooperative, or a corroborative, relationship between Saddam Hussein's government and these Al Qaeda operatives with regard to the attacks on the United States."
While there may not be evidence that Saddam and Al-Qaeda cooperated in attacks on the United States, the evidence that Saddam Hussein's Iraq and Al-Qaeda worked together is absolutely undeniable.
For example, no one disputes that Abu Musab al Zarqawi, who once ran an Al-Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan and is leading Al-Qaeda terrorist attacks in Iraq today, was in Iraq BEFORE the war started getting medical care. In and of itself, that would seem to strongly suggest a significant connection.
But wait, there's more!
Consider this comment by former CIA Director George Tenet in a letter to the Senate Intelligence Committee on October 7, 2002:
"Credible reporting states that al Qaeda leaders sought contacts in Iraq who could help them acquire WMD capabilities. The reporting also stated that Iraq has provided training to al Qaeda members in the areas of poisons and gases and making conventional bombs."
Here's more from Richard Miniter, author of "Losing Bin Laden: How Bill Clinton's Failures Unleashed Global Terror":
* Abdul Rahman Yasin was the only member of the al Qaeda cell that detonated the 1993 World Trade Center bomb to remain at large in the Clinton years. He fled to Iraq. U.S. forces recently discovered a cache of documents in Tikrit, Saddam's hometown, that show that Iraq gave Mr. Yasin both a house and monthly salary.
* Bin Laden met at least eight times with officers of Iraq's Special Security Organization, a secret police agency run by Saddam's son Qusay, and met with officials from Saddam's mukhabarat, its external intelligence service, according to intelligence made public by Secretary of State Colin Powell, who was speaking before the United Nations Security Council on February 6, 2003.
* In 1998, Abbas al-Janabi, a longtime aide to Saddam's son Uday, defected to the West. At the time, he repeatedly told reporters that there was a direct connection between Iraq and al Qaeda.
* Mohamed Mansour Shahab, a smuggler hired by Iraq to transport weapons to bin Laden in Afghanistan, was arrested by anti-Hussein Kurdish forces in May, 2000. He later told his story to American intelligence and a reporter for the New Yorker magazine.
Here's more from Weekly Standard columnist Stephen Hayes, author of "The Connection : How al Qaeda's Collaboration with Saddam Hussein Has Endangered America":
"Evan Bayh, Democrat from Indiana, has described the Iraq-al Qaeda connection as a relationship of "mutual exploitation." Joe Lieberman said, "There are extensive contacts between Saddam Hussein's government and al Qaeda." George Tenet, too, has spoken of those contacts and goes further, claiming Iraqi "training" of al Qaeda terrorists on WMDs and provision of "safe haven" for al Qaeda in Baghdad. Richard Clarke once said the U.S. government was "sure" Iraq had provided a chemical-weapons precursor to an al Qaeda-linked pharmaceutical plant in Sudan. Even Hillary Clinton cited the Iraq-al Qaeda connection as one reason she voted for the Iraq War."
So is there proof that Saddam Hussein and Al-Qaeda worked together to hit targets in the US? No. But, is there extensive evidence that they had ties and worked together at times? Absolutely.
8) The Downing Street Memo proves Bush lied to the American people about the war. The left-side of the blogosphere has been bleating ceaselessly about the Downing Street Memo since the beginning of May which might lead you to wonder why the reaction to the memo has been so tepid in the scandal loving mainstream media. Well, the problem with the DSM is that there's no "there, there."
Some of the anti-war crowd's rantings about the memo have hinged on its acknowledgement of increased bombings in the Iraqi no-fly zones ("spikes of activity") during the run-up to the war. However, the increased frequency of bombings was common knowledge even back in 2002 (See here, here, & here). We had already been bombing the Iraqis in the no-fly zone and we increased the pace to soften them up a bit just in case we had to go in. It probably saved the lives of some of our soldiers and almost no one except members of Saddam's government seemed upset about it while it was actually going on. So why should it be a big deal now in 2005? The carping about it at this point is pure political gamesmanship.
Moving on to another jejune point in the memos that has led to hyperventilation among Bush foes, take a look at this line:
"C reported on his recent talks in Washington. There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable."
Note that no particular person in the Bush administration said war is "inevitable," it's just the perception that C, AKA Sir Richard Dearlove, has. Again, we're talking about something that was common knowledge back in July of 2002, as even liberal Michael Kinsley pointed out in a notably unenthusiastic LA Times column about the DSM:
"Just look at what was in the newspapers on July 23, 2002, and the day before. Left-wing Los Angeles Times columnist Robert Scheer casually referred to the coming war as "much planned for." The New York Times reported Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's response to a story that "reported preliminary planning on ways the United States might attack Iraq to topple President Saddam Hussein." Rumsfeld effectively confirmed the report by announcing an investigation of the leak.
A Wall Street Journal Op-Ed declared that "the drums of war beat louder." A dispatch from Turkey in the New York Times even used the same word, "inevitable," to describe the thinking in Ankara about the thinking in Washington about the decision "to topple President Saddam Hussein of Iraq by force."
Why, it almost sounds as if many people who weren't passing around secret documents saw the invasion of Iraq as "inevitable," even back then! I guess those "secret" memos aren't as as chock full of sensitive information as you'd think.
But, let's move on to the meat of the DSM. Via Wikipedia, here the part of the Downing Street Memo that has caused the most "excitement" on the left:
Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The NSC had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action.
Basically the charge here is supposed to be that Bush "fixed" the evidence for the war.
When the word "fixed" is mentioned in the memo, it's obviously not being used as Americans would use it if they were talking about "fixing" a horse race. Instead, the writer was trying to get across that the Bush administration was attempting to build a solid case to justify its policy publicly. That's certainly not a unique way of looking at it either. For example, John Ware, a reporter at the very liberal BBC, seems to have roughly the same interpretation:
"Several well placed sources have told us that Sir Richard Dearlove was minuted as saying: "The facts and the intelligence were being fixed round the policy by the Bush administration." By 'fixed' the MI6 chief meant that the Americans were trawling for evidence to reinforce their claim that Saddam was a threat."
Furthermore, to even try to interpret the Downing Street Memo as supporting the idea that Bush was making up evidence -- presumably about weapons of mass destruction -- is extremely difficult to square with the fact that the DSM itself makes it absolutely clear that the British believed Saddam had WMDs. From the DSM:
"For instance, what were the consequences, if Saddam used WMD on day one, or if Baghdad did not collapse and urban warfighting began? You said that Saddam could also use his WMD on Kuwait. Or on Israel, added the Defence Secretary."
If the Bush administration and the Brits believed Saddam had WMDs and was capable of using them, what exactly is supposed to have been forged? Nothing of course, because that's not how the person taking the notes meant it to be interpreted. If he'd known his notes were ever going to be read by the public, I'm sure he would have been more careful about ambiguous phrasing that could be willfully misinterpreted for political gain.
On top of all that, there have already been investigations that have cleared the Bush administration of doing anything shady on the intelligence front. As Cassandra at Villainous Company correctly pointed out:
Quote (the DSM) all you want. Is there some evidence to back this up? Say, to refute the conclusions of the Butler Report (British), the Senate Select Intelligence Committee, or the 9/11 Commission, which all concluded that there was no improper manipulation of intelligence? Or are we now willing to disregard the conclusions of three official inquiries on the strength of one (word in an) unattributed set of minutes from a single foreign staff meeting?"
The Downing Street Memo is a lot of hullabaloo over nothing of note.
Read Rush's Interview with Mark Levin, author of Men In Black