Monday, December 03, 2018

Hanukkah, The Festival Of Lights And Freedom


Tonight marks the second night of Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights .

While many of you may be familiar with the story of the Miracle of the Oil, the truth is that Hanukkah really celebrates another miracle - the miracle of a group of untrained farmers and tradesman with hardly any arms or experience in war utterly defeating the professional armies of the Seleucid Empire, a victory for freedom that belongs to all of us alike, Jew and Gentile.

Hanukkah celebrates not only one of the important events in Jewish history but is a celebration of the triumph of faith,of light over darkness. It takes place every year,usually in mid to late December, but while its date varies if you go by the western calendar, in the Hebrew calendar Hanukkah always falls on the eve of the 24th day of the Hebrew month of Kislev.

This war for Jewish independence took place in the second century B.C.E. The story is told in the First Book of Maccabees, and retold in the Second Book of Maccabees. An excellent contemporary military history of the war can be found in Battles of the Bible, coauthored by Chaim Herzog and Mordechai Gichon.

After his death, Alexander the Great's empire broke into several parts, and Israel was under the control of the Seleucid Greek empire, based in Syria. Israel had lived peacefully under the Persian Empire and under the Ptolemic empire (of Egypt), both which tolerated Judaism but the Seleucid Emperor Antiochus Epiphanes was an arrogant, bigoted ruler who attempted to force the Jews to abandon their religion and to adopt the Seleucid Greek customs and worship,which included idolatry.

There were those Jews back then whom considered themselves `modern' and `assimilated' who were willing to go along with this, even to the extent of having surgical operations to reverse circumcision.

Others did not, and they were persecuted vigorously and brutalized by the Seleucid Greeks. Even the teaching of Torah,the Jewish Scriptures was forbidden.

Tyrants always overreach and the start of the Maccabee Revolt sprang from a single spontaneous act of resistance. In the foothills village of Modi'in in 167BCE, a Greek army unit set up an altar, and ordered the local Jewish rabbi, Mattathias, to sacrifice a pig and eat it. He refused, as did his five sons. When a Jewish collaborator came forward to offer to perform the sacrifice, a furious Mattathias "ran and killed him on the spot, killed the king's officer who was forcing them to sacrifice, and tore down the altar" (1 Mac. 2:15-25).

Mattathias, his sons and their followers then headed for the Judean hills, to launch a guerrilla war along with a handful of followers. They were farmers who had no military training, facing a war with a well armed professional military. There hadn't been a Jewish army since Babylon had destroyed the Judean kingdom four centuries before. The only weapons they had were farming tools and whatever simple weapons they could construct, such as bows, maces and slings. During this first year, Mattathias died, and his middle son Judah took over command as his successor.

Nicknamed "the hammer" ("Maccabee," in Hebrew), Judah put together a guerrilla army that staged daring nighttime raids on the Greek outposts, then melted back into the countryside. His successes attracted more supporters, and the revolt spread.

The war went on for 25 years, one of the most singular wars for independence in history. It's amazing that it was fought at all, let alone won.

The Seleucids and their King Antiochus were determined to crush the revolt. They sent huge, well equipped armies into Israel to subdue the Jews. They were all defeated, at odds that seem miraculous even today. Judah Maccabee turned out to be a military genius, using unheard of tactics, leading the Greek phalanxes into the hills where they could not maneuver and destroying them in ambushes.

To give you an idea of how essential the Jewish heartland of Judea and Samaria was and is to Israel's survival then and now, the map below shows where the major battles of the war took place.(hat tip, Carl) Click on it to enlarge it:



Judea and Samaria were a natural fortress that completely defied all attempts of the Seleucid armies to take it, a lesson well worth remembering even today. Even their famous war elephants, the heavy tanks of the day were of no use in that terrain.

One thing that is seldom mentioned about the war is the fact that a significant part of it took place against the Hellenized, `modern',`assimilated' Jewish traitors I mentioned earlier, who were more than willing to abandon the Jewish way of life and supported their Seleucid masters against their fellow Jews.

As Ecclesiastes famously said in the Megillot, there's nothing new under the sun.

In 164 BCE, the Jews utterly routed a large force commanded by the Seluecid Viceroy Lysias that had outnumbered them two to one. That battle took place six miles north of Hebron, near the Jewish fortress of Beth-zur. The victory allowed Judah and his army to retake Jerusalem.

When they entered Jerusalem, Judah and his followers entered the Holy Temple on the Temple Mount. The Temple had been wrecked and horribly desecrated, with profanities scrawled on the walls and the Ark by the Seleucids.

So the Maccabees built a new altar. When the time came to light the N'er Tamid, the Eternal Light of the Temple, the Jews could find only one sanctified jar of oil marked with the seal of the High Priest. It was enough to last one evening. On the 25th of Kislev, in the year 164 BCE,the lamp was lit with this small jar of oil and, miraculously, stayed lit for eight days, until more oil suitable for the temple was made. The eight days of Hanukkah celebrate that miracle, as well as the divine intervention that had led the Jews to amazing victories over well-equipped enemies far superior in numbers. "Therefore, carrying ivy-wreathed wands and beautiful branches and also fronds of palm, they offered hymns of thanksgiving to him who had given success to the purifying of his own holy place" (2 Mac. 10:7).

The war itself continued. In 160 BCE, near modern-day Ramallah, Judah was killed, but Judah's brother Jonathan, and then his brother Simon took command of the Jewish army, finally winning complete independence in 142 BCE. At last, "All the people sat under their own vines and fig trees, and there was none to make them afraid" (1 Mac. 14:12).

Towards the end of the war, Antiochus and the Seleucids became so obsessed with defeating the Israelites that they sacked their own cities and sold their own citizens into slavery to get money to pursue the war against the Jews.

That verse from the first Book Of Maccabee, by the way, was quoted by America's first president George Washington in his famous letter to the Jewish community in Providence, Rhode Island in 1790, telling them they were welcome in America. Being obviously familiar with the story of the Maccabees,General Washington may well have taken comfort in the dark days of our own struggle for independence and freedom from tyranny from it.

The War of the Maccabees was the first war ever fought for religious freedom. Somehow, a group of farmers who refused to bow to their oppressors defeated a mighty empire and its immense standing armies. There seems to be no plausible explanation for the victory of the Jews except that it was a miracle.

Hanukkah reminds us that with G-d's help, victory over evil is assured, that light triumphs over darkness and no miracle is impossible. Modern Israel and the survival of the Jewish people against all odds are proof of that.


Symbols in Hanukkah

Aside from the Hanukkiah (candlesticks), the other great symbol of Hanukkah are those small spinning tops known as dreidels.













The four letters which appear on the four corners of a dreidel allude to the miracle of Hanukkah. They spell out: Nes (N-miracle), Gadol (G-great), Haya (H-happened) and Sham (S-there, meaning in Israel). Or, `a great miracle happened there.'

Indeed it did.

And this is also a time for Jews to light the menorah, to 'make public the miracle and shed light on the world, and to celebrate and to sing this ancient hymn, 'Maoz Tzur', (Rock of Ages). This version, fittingly, was cooked up by students at the Technion, one of the most advanced scientific seats of learning in the entire world and a symbol of Israel's rebirth:



חנוכה - בפקולטה לכימיה בטכניון יצרו גירסה מיוחדת באמצעות כלי מעבדה
ר מעוז צו

Chag Hanukkah Sameach! Happy Hanukkah!

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

The Real Story on Merkel And Macron's Call For A New EU Army

 Related image

By now, many Americans are aware of France’s Socialist President Emanuel Macron’s acid comments to U.S. President Donald Trump about how a new EU Army was needed for protection from, “China, Russia and even the United States of America.”

This was particularly insulting since Macron made his remarks on an occasion when President Trump was in France to commemorate the end of WWI and to honor the American soldiers who fell in places like Belleau Wood and the Argonne Forest and literally saved France from defeat at the hands of the German Army. Without the heroic efforts of those American soldiers,that  last German offensive in 1918 would almost certainly have broken through the exhausted French troops, many of whom had mutinied against their own officers just months ago.

Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel was quick to second Macron's remarks at a speech the very next day to the European Parliament, saying, "we have to work on the vision of one day creating a real European army.”

 Image result for Macron and Merkel recent

This is quite interesting. Germany's Bundeswehr is an under equipped, under manned and under financed joke, and Germany refuses to even meet their NATO commitments financially. As for France, most of their army is stationed within France itself, trying to maintain a semblance of order in France's cities, and France's economy is in a dismal recession. To do what Macron and Merkel are planning would cost billions that neither country would likely be able to afford, especially if, as Merkel said, they plan on staying part of NATO.

So what's behind this call for a new EU Army is actually easy to see if we look at the similarities between Merkel and Macron.

Both are by nature, totalitarians. Macron is a lifelong socialist and EU functionary who was part of the Hollande regime. Angela Merkel was a member of East Germany's notorious secret police, the STASI. And it's certainly easy to see these tendencies at work at when you look at how the EU and their individual countries are being run.

 Image result for Merkel in stasi uniform

Both are seeing their grip on power severely threatened. Macron's popularity has plummeted severely, now that the French have begun to realize how badly they were conned and lied to in the last election.  The French are increasingly pessimistic about their future.  And Angela Merkel,while still  Bundeskanzlerin of Germany has seen her own Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party reject her, along with their historic coalition partners, the Bavarian-based Christian Social Union (CSU). Both parties are now at record lows in approval ratings, and Merkel will probably not even finish her term unless something drastic happens.  

While Macron's mishandling of France's economy contributed to his unpopularity, both he and Angela Merkel are deeply unpopular because of the problems caused by Merkel's decision to open the EU's borders to Muslim migrants and Macron's eager acquiescence to that policy for France. For all the efforts of most of the press in these countries, the sexual assaults, violence, vandalism and crime that have occurred are no secret any more to the average German or French citizen.

Both leaders are also childless by choice. People with that mindset  tend to have a very different view of the future than those who have children.

So, let's put the pieces together, shall we? 

 The original bright idea Merkel and and other EU leaders had was to solve a growing problem: their native populations were simply not having children and rapidly graying. This tends to happen in socialist countries, and it was particularly true in Germany. And that meant fewer taxpayers to keep the socialist welfare state these countries had created solvent and running. Merkel hit on the idea of importing thousands of Muslim migrants to Germany, most of them young men of military age. She stupidly thought they would assimilate, adopt German culture and become taxpayers to keep Germany's social welfare system afloat.

What actually happened in both France,Germany and other countries stupid enough to try this is that the vast  majority of these young Muslim men didn't assimilate at all. After all, their own religion and culture was the best, wasn't it? Why imitate the kuffars? Nor did they particularly want to work, not when living on the dole gave them a lifestyle far better than they had back home, with free housing, medical care, and a generous cash stipend. And for amusement, there was crime, gang rapes, rioting, gay bashing, attacking Jews and simply behaving overall like the conquerors Mohammed and the Qur'an told them they were.  

Merkel and Macron's new idea is simply a variation on their former one. If they can't get these migrants off the dole and working, why not conscript them! Which is exactly how the new EU army is going to be created. While they probably wouldn't be too much use against the Russians, the new EU army could be used to threaten or even to attack EU nations like Hungary, Italy, Austria, Poland, and the Czech Republic who aren't abiding by the EU's diktats and bring them to heel. And of course, to discipline any dissidents in their own countries who need to be taught a lesson about co-operating with the New Order. It could also be used to deal with those uppity Jews in Israel who won't do as they're told by the EU. And of course, it would get a lot of these migrants off the dole. Given their inherent nature, making them into horde-like shock troops shouldn't be too hard, should it?

If it works the way they see it working, the entire populist movement in the EU nations can be crushed. And it's a great way for leaders like Merkel and Macron to stay in power, nicht wahr

Of course, in reality this would backfire in a hideous way. Armed and trained Muslim migrants aren't going to obey the orders of their infidel masters for very long.  They will simply use the opportunity they have been given to take over whatever they can manage to conquer and turn it into Dar Islam, which of course they will rule under shariah.

You would think Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron would be smart enough to see how badly their last experiment with Muslim Migrants turned out and avoid this sort of thing. But remember, they were dumb enough to do it  in the first place, and to insist on  bringing more migrants in,  even when it became obvious what a huge mistake it was. 

And the U.S.? Since most of the nations of Western Europe now regard America as  dangerous, would we get involved? It depends. 

I've seen others write about what a great  thing a new EU army would be, because we could simply take our troops out of Europe and forget about it. They forget that France has nuclear weapons and even some ICBMs and that Germany's Kiel shipyards are fully capable of building nuclear capable submarines. Would it really be such a great idea to let the Muslims get their hands on them?  So yes we probably would pull at least France out of the fire again, unless we simply decided to bomb the French nuclear facilities and Germany shipyards and have done with it.

  Also, in spite of what Angela Merkel had to say, as soon as they have their new EU army in place, NATO will largely be history. But that isn't going to apply to Eastern Europe, Italy, and quite possibly the UK if someone like Boris Johnson, David Davis or Dominic Raab takes over from Theresa May, which is very likely. And yes, if they're attacked, we might see US forces involved. 

Let's hope Merkel and Macron's idea of an EU army turns out to be just trial balloon with a hole in it. 

These leaders consider America a greater threat to them than an aggressive Islamist Iran, to the point where they appease the Ayatollahs at every turn and put their hopes in a bogus 'deal' Iran never even signed.
 
Based on that, I wouldn't count on a new EU Army being on our side in the event things hit the fan.
Rob Miller

Rob Miller







Rob Miller writes for Joshuapundit. His articles have appeared in The Jerusalem Post, The Washington Examiner, American Thinker, The Los Angeles Times, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The San Francisco Chronicle, Real Clear Politics, The Times Of Israel, Breitbart.Com, Yediot and other publications.
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Sunday, November 18, 2018

Forum: What Historical Figure Would You Like To Be?



Every week, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question: What Historical Figure Would You Like To Be?

Don Surber: Wilt Chamberlain. 30,000 points, 2,000 women.

Jeffrey Avalon Friedberg:If I could I would want to be the first guy who decided to have a city and be king of it. He would also have figured out that to be, and remain, king he would need a constituency of dedicated rabble.

He would have been the guy who came up with the first idea of telling the rabble what they needed to hear to keep himself in power. Lies would be okay, because the only thing that mattered would be direction and reward or punishment of my masses.

You know, let those who defy me be fired, ruined socially, or destroyed—prevented from breeding independent thinkers like themselves.

And then I’d reward those who backed up me and my special, private, social System. My backers would be the ones to get the big farming and gathering contracts, become rich and famous, get the lucrative cuneiform and symbols contracts, rock dragging endorsements, and be allowed to breed more subjects for me, exactly like themselves.

I would then also be the guy who comes up with the idea of Enforcers, to keep my special societal System running. These would be my police and special State prosecutors, or whatever I might choose to call them.

The Guy—this guy—he would have a way to harness the powers of Marketing, State rituals, and the Social Deliverers—or town news criers.

Thus, the guy, he would have his very of special political System, its purveyors, and Enforcers. He would be the Rock-con Valley and yuge Social Media guy—King.

And if I could go back in time, and be that guy, and be in charge of everything around me and mold the rabble to my Will, and keep them in line, and purvey and enforce my very special Social System: I would go back to being just a fricking goat herder and spare the world from Liberalism forever.

Rob Miller: Hmmm! Joshua, of course! Or maybe Puccini.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz: Rosalind Russell: Beautiful, talented and smart.

David Schuler: Sir Richard Francis Burton. Explorer, geographer, diplomat, spy, scholar, poet, swordsman, linguist. Tall, dark, and handsome. One of the founders of modern anthropology. Spoke, read, and wrote dozens of languages well.

Laura Rambeau Lee:Maybe it’s my age, but thinking about this question I really can’t come up with anyone in history I would want to be. I honor those from the past who have advanced humankind and sought to better our lives. From the ancient philosophers and through the enlightenment; from our founding fathers and those who fought for the human rights of all individuals; their place in history is and should be acknowledged and their ideas and ideals taught to our children and grandchildren.

When I think back to the past I can’t imagine dealing with the hardship of everyday life of previous generations; having to hunt and raise our own food, simple things like communication, medical care, even bathing, cooking and doing laundry. The technological advancements that have happened in my lifetime alone are an incredible testament to human ingenuity. We live in amazing times. I feel a responsibility, as I am sure many of us do who have been drawn to the blogosphere, to be today’s pamphleteers and town criers, to touch as many people as possible and expose the evil forces and people in the world working to destroy our culture and our country. I feel the importance and urgency of the work we do and am happy to be living in the here and now. Whether we win or lose this fight, at least we can look back and say we were not silent.


Patrick O'Hannigan
: I have the same problem Laura does -- I don't want to be anyone else.

But I'd like to have a beer with Benjamin Franklin, Thomas ("The king's good servant, but God's first") Moore, and beach volleyball legend Kerri Walsh-Jennings.


 Well, there it is!

Make sure to drop by every Monday for the WoW! Magazine Forum. And enjoy WoW! Magazine 24-7 with some of the best stuff written in the 'net. Take from me, you won't want to miss it.


Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Forum: What Will Be The Midterm Results?



Every week, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question: What Will Be The Midterm Results?

Rob Miller: I see the Republicans increasing their lead in the Senate to at least 54-46. They will have pickups in Florida, Missouri, N. Dakota in the least, and quite possibly Montana and Indiana. They'll retain Arizona and Tennessee, and possibly Nevada, depending on how many illegal migrants in Clark County (Las Vegas) the Dems manufacture votes for. So the lead could be as high as  55-45 or even 56-44.

Beto O'rourke, a 'Kennedy' even when it comes to his drunk driving record and history of leaving the scene of an accident he caused will be embarrassingly defeated. Another long shot I'd love to see come in is in Michigan, where the disgusting Debbie Stabenow's lead is decreasing against John James, a black Republican conservative businessman and war hero. A long shot, but not impossible.

Californians have a wonderful choice for Senate. They can pick the ethics challenged Difi, who employed a Chinese spy for years while her husband made millions in China through his connections with the government there...OR MeCha and La Raza's poster boy Kevin De Leon, who believes it's perfectly OK for illegal migrants to use fake ids and engage in identity theft. Both Democrats, of course.

The House I see as ending up with a smaller majority for the Republicans but still a majority. The Dems will end up in the low 200's at best because they will pick up some seats in California and similar Crazyvilles they already control. The GOP will end up with something like 220-225, I think.

Governors? Scott Walker will likely just eke out another term. Commies Stacy Abrams and Andrew Gillum will be defeated in Georgia and Florida, with Brian Kemp and DeSantis winning (in the case of Desantis, by a nose). My guess is 28-22, favoring the GOP.

Ignore the polls, since they include ridiculously bogus polls from CNN that are hysterically funny, but serve the purpose of cooking the averages at places like RCP.

Jeffrey Avalon Friedberg: It will be Republicans by a landslide all around.

I predict utter disgrace for the evil, open borders, one world democrats, who will of course then explode and declare both some sort of “war” and a “stolen” election.

I don’t have specific numbers.

My state of New Mexico, (USA), is blood blue, and the rubber-stamp, sycophant dems will sweep it.

Steve Pearce will not be elected Governor.

Democrats should not push this further. Enough is enough.

Don Surber: Democrats must defend 26 Senate seats (including independents Bernard Sanders of Vermont and Angus King of Maine) while Republicans have nine seats on the line.

To take the Senate Democrats must win at least 28 of those 35 Senate seats (both senators will be elected in Minnesota and Mississippi).

At present, Real Clear Politics has Republicans gaining three seats. If that holds, Democrats will win 23 of the 35 seats and still not get the Senate.

Now for my prediction. Republicans will keep the Senate. Democrats will then whine about winning the popular vote but not winning the Senate. Democrats should easily have more votes than Republicans even if Republicans take more seats because California's Senate race is between two Democrats.

Vote early, then on the night of November 6 watch the returns not because the Senate will change but because the Left will react the same way they did rwo years ago. They have not learned.

Doug Hagin
: Well, not a blue wave. The GOP will gain in the Senate, and will keep the House. In large part because the GOP has, finally discovered spines, and the economy, and yes, because the Dems have far overplayed their rhetoric.

Laura Rambeau Lee:Listening to the mainstream media pundits (someone has to do it) the Democrats anticipate a Blue Wave and fully expect to take the House and Senate. Watching the rallies around the country, President Trump draws tens of thousands of excited and engaged supporters while former Vice President Joe Biden can’t seem to draw 1/1024th as many to a Democratic rally in Las Vegas. However, we can’t discount the widespread voter fraud. Being involved in cleaning voter rolls in our county in Florida a few years ago I know voter fraud is a very real issue and getting worse.

I am seriously concerned with the governor’s race in my state. Democrat Tallahassee mayor Andrew Gillum (spell check keeps changing his name to Gollum) is supported monetarily by George Soros and Tom Steyer, while Republican Congressman Ron DeSantis is supported by conservative Republicans but not so much by establishment Republicans. DeSantis should be a shoo-in in our Red State following a successful Republican Governor Rick Scott, who is running for Senate and I hope beats out Democrat Senator Bill Nelson. Gillum is embroiled in scandals involving the FBI and illegal activities in development dealings in Tallahassee and has seen an increase in crime in the city during his term as mayor. And he promises to raise our taxes by one billion dollars! That’s a winning platform, right? DeSantis and Gillum are on complete opposite sides of the political spectrum. What worries me is after Hurricane Michael pretty much decimated the Florida panhandle area, and many are still without power and their homes destroyed, will they be able or want to get to the polls and vote?

 Fortunately Governor Scott signed an executive order Thursday easing voting restrictions in eight counties in the Panhandle since several election offices and polling places were damaged or destroyed. The order gives these counties the ability to extend early voting and designate more early voting locations even though the deadline to do so has passed. There are about 200,000 voters in the area which usually has above average turnouts in mid-term elections and reliably vote Republican. The Panhandle voters won the state for Trump in 2016.

The evening of November 6th I believe we will see a Red Wave and Republicans retaining control of the House and Senate, along with a major meltdown by the arrogant main stream media, who still don’t understand why we fight. It’s must see TV!

David Schuler
: I've been writing about this for some time. I think the Republicans will hold the Senate, maybe even picking up a seat or two. I think the likelihood is that they will lose the House but the Democrats will only hold the majority by the narrowest of margins.

Another IMO less likely alternative is that the Republicans continue to hold the House but by a narrower margin than presently.

Much less likely outcomes: the Democrats win the House and end up with as many seats as the Republicans hold now or more or the Republicans gain seats in the House.

 Well, there it is!

Make sure to drop by every Monday for the WoW! Magazine Forum. And enjoy WoW! Magazine 24-7 with some of the best stuff written in the 'net. Take from me, you won't want to miss it.


Monday, October 08, 2018

Forum: What Are Your Feelings On The Kavanaugh Nomination And Hearings?



Every week, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question: What Are Your Feelings On The Kavanaugh Nomination And Hearings?

Don Surber:The Kavanaugh Debacle was the best thing to happen to Republicans since passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. With the exception of Joe Manchin, Democratic senators in red states are toast, maybe even in the purple ones.

Kamala Harris and Spartacus Booker are not ready for prime time, or even SNL.

Chuck Grassley, Mitch McConnell, and Susan Collins shine. And what can I say about Lindsey Graham? Freed from McCain, he soars like an eagle.

OK, maybe just an osprey.


Fausta Rodríguez Wertz: I am actually ashamed of the whole sorry spectacle.

I am ashamed that Judge Kavanaugh cannot go to church on Sundays because protesters block the entry. I am ashamed that his daughters need bodyguards to go to school, that his wife receives death threats, that his mother and father have to endure idiot comedians calling for their son’s castration.

I am ashamed that, as Judge Kavanaugh himself said yesterday, “This conformation process has become a national disgrace.”

I am ashamed to know that the left is not going to give up on Kavanaugh. Not now, not ever.

I am ashamed that this circus revolves around the fear that Justice Kavanaugh would overturn Roe v. Wade. There have been sixty million abortions since Roe v. Wade. People who celebrate the killing of sixty million lives will stop at nothing.

And that is the greatest shame of all.

Then there's the question of what happens next. I am very pessimistic. I expect that the next nominee will be subjected to even more pressure. The Left won't stop.

Rob Miller: The vote turned out as I expected, although there were some surprises. As I predicted, Susan Collins was not to be bullied or threatened into submission. Jeff Flake and Ben Sasse pleasantly surprised me. Lisa Murkowski didn't.

I think it was absolutely wonderful that only Joe Manchin had the smarts to be the only Democrat in a Red State up for re-election to vote to confirm Kavanaugh. Joe Donnelly, Heidi Hightkamp, Claire McKaskill, Jon Tester and Bill Nelson didn't, and they will pay a price come November.

The actual hearings were one of the best things to happen for the GOP for some time. First it showed America the true face of the hysterical left, and creatures like Kamala Harris and Cory Booker were revealed as the cadres and ideologues they really are. So were a number of other Democrats as well as their trained seals in the media. The American people now truly see the commie behind the curtain, and many of them who were sitting on the fence now know why it's so important that these people never gain control of government again. Even career never trumpers like Erick Erickson now see this and are admitting they had Trump wrong all along. Women looked at their sons, husbands, fathers and brothers and realized how easy their lives could be ruined simply for expediency by any woman for any reason. The hypocrisy of the Left in ignoring sexual predators in their own ranks like Keith Ellison while ignoring the rule of law and manufacturing these kind of allegations with zero proof just for po0litical purposes horrified quite a few Americans. Some like the brilliant Camile Paglia even took it farther, understanding that false accusations like this would directly harm real victims of sexual assault and prevent them from being believed.

Meanwhile, Trump's courage in not abandoning Judge Kavanaugh, Mitch McConnell's steadfastness and the courage of Lindsay Graham, Ted Cruz, and Susan Collins are showing Republicans disgusted with the previous lack of spine and commitment that things have changed and are giving them the fire to get out and vote.

As a side note, while I liked most of Susan Collins' speech, it annoyed me that she still referred to Dr. Ford as a 'survivor.' There's absolutely no proof that she survived anything except being charged for slander like the pathological, Trump-hating politically partisan liar she is.

In the words of one of Steven Colbert's writers, Ariel Dumas "“Whatever happens, I’m just glad we ruined Brett Kavanaugh’s life.”

Until there is a real cost for doing something this despicable, they'll keep at it. IMO, that needs to change if this sort of thing is ever going to end.


Doug Hagin: That the Republicans finally found some spine, and did not slink away will do things. Give their base some real hope for a stronger party, and it will make the Left become even more unhinged. The Trump presidency has absolutely ripped the "moderate" mask off of the Democratic party. And now their far left faces are showing.

James Kirwin: I waited for the final vote to respond. I’ve been so disgusted with the GOP recently that I didn’t trust them.

Now that it’s over I feel I can breathe again. And more importantly be proud of my party affiliation.

From Lindsay Graham channeling Boston lawyer Joseph Welch’s “Have you no sense of decency sir? Moment against Joe McCarthy, to Flake – of all Republicans Flake – standing up to the leftist bullies, ending with Maine Sen. Susan Collin’s impassioned speech defending Kavanaugh I don’t think I have ever been prouder to be a Republican.

There is really nothing more important for conservatives than the Supreme Court. All the issues that matter to us are decided by that court and the only way to get a fair hearing is to have people on the bench who agree with our view of the Constitution. The Gorsuch appointment made Trump’s victory in 2016 worthwhile. Kavanaugh’s appointment cements his legacy.

We conservatives owe Graham and Collins for this victory. They both had plenty of reasons to fold and could have, but when it mattered they showed guts and dare I say it, spine. In the coming years we must remember their actions over the past two weeks and stand by them when they need us.

Jeffrey Avalon Friedberg:Politics have been broken since way before even Bill Clinton and can never be repaired because they are outdated and just don’t work—if they ever did. Hubert Humphrey and his oldtime ilk are all dead and gone.

Greece invented democracy. Is Greece a paragon of democracy now today? No.

By the same token, the whole Brett-Nancy-Streisand -Graham thing is just more bullshit. It’s all about personal power and self-aggrandizement. What did Susan Collins get in return for her vote?

The supreme court will now be “resisted” and never obeyed again. Gang-Mobs will assault public spaces. Screaming 20 year olds in black masks will spit and hit.

Politics are now handmaiden to the communist party and its agents in government, media, kitchens, and bedrooms everywhere.

Trump knows this. It’s why he does not seek to “Presidentially” govern. Rather, he seeks to

get

stuff

done.

Puma By Design: The shock of the first series of allegations levied against Brett Kavanaugh lasted for a moment. Before I could wrap my head around what was going on, the second set of allegations followed and it was at this point that I became concerned at the revelations of what was at stake hit.

I have friends who were victims of sexual assault and couldn’t help but feel resentful of Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony which had too many blanks and didn’t add up.



The very idea that sexual assault would be used as a tool to stop the advancement of a Supreme Court nominee or anyone else for that matter is shameful.

My heart broke as Judge Brett Kavanaugh before the world was forced to vigorously defend himself, his honor, his family before a tribunal of Marxist bureaucrats’ hell bent on destroying an innocent man for the sake of dismantling the patriarchy and satisfying their lust for power.

I have a 39 year old son, brother, uncles, great nephews, nephews, grandson, male cousins and friends and as I listened to Judge Kavanaugh respond to stupid questions about his yearbook, not only was I pissed off, I became angry and concerned that the Republican Party would fold like a suitcase full of cheap suits so as not to offend women and in so doing permit these rabid Marxists to crush Kavanaugh, his family, the President and the liberties of every American born man and boy.
But then Senator Lindsey Graham took a stand and as my nieces and nephews say, “it was on from there.”

My first thought as I observed Senator Graham, “Lindsey, what took you so long?” My second thought was something on the line of, “Damn, I’m sure glad that John McCain’s not here,” after which I asked God’s forgiveness for thinking such a thing.

I thought about the effect of McCain’s absence more than once this past week as the Republican Party from Graham to Senator Chuck Grassley to Senator Susan Collins, seemed to have found their will to fight, not their constituency but the hard-left.

Just as Progressives did not see Kavanaugh coming and handled it badly, it never occurred to them (or me) that Republicans were up for the fight. Progressives leaned hard expecting Republicans to buckle under and got the reverse.

Republicans gave back as good as they got. It appeared that with each new wave of false allegations, Americans became angrier and Republicans fought back harder.

It is unfortunate that we had to go there but, in the end, Kavanaugh, the President, the GOP and liberty came out on top.

As for the hard left, they showed Americans just how bad they are for our country.

We’re not done yet.

Laura Rambeau Lee:The hearings were a mockery of our process for appointing Supreme Court justices. With Kavanaugh’s distinguished career as a judge and volumes of decisions there was no question of his qualifications. There wasn’t even much discussion regarding it because everyone knew he was eminently qualified. The Senate interviews and hearing were concluded and this last minute accusation of an uncorroborated sexual assault over 35 years ago was nothing more than a ploy to delay, delay, and further delay. Senator Diane Feinstein sat on this information since July and did not bring it up until it was pretty certain he would be confirmed. The Republicans allowed themselves to be manipulated by the Democrats and the media to re-open the FBI investigation, which found not a single individual who would corroborate Ford’s assault allegations. We are nothing if we allow such an erosion of one of the basic tenets of our founding and legal system; that an individual is innocent until proven guilty. Personally I believe the Democrats did not want Kavanaugh to be confirmed because of his record in support of the Second Amendment.

When President Trump has the opportunity to nominate the next Supreme Court justice, and he will, I hope Republicans remember this debacle and not permit Democrats to grandstand and go to such extremes to challenge his candidate. Remember, elections have consequences, and one of the consequences is that the president gets to nominate Supreme Court justices. Republicans accepted, albeit grudgingly, President Obama’s appointments of Justices Sotomayor and Kagan as they agreed they were both highly qualified. The understanding is the president is elected by the people and through the president the people get to choose who sits on the Supreme Court. Many of us voted for President Trump for this very reason.

Some on the left are now speaking of impeaching Justice Kavanaugh if they win the majority in Congress in November. This alone should energize the conservative base, and even some independents and Democrats, to vote Republican to prevent these anti-American ideologues from obtaining power ever again.

We must continue to be vigilant and never rest, for as President Ronald Reagan said “freedom is never more than one generation from extinction. We didn’t pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.” The vote, 50 to 48, was the closest vote for a Supreme Court justice since 1881. Once again it appears Providence is looking favorably on our nation and giving us another chance to right our course.

Bookworm: Gosh, you guys are so thoughtful and intelligent. Truly, I have nothing to add that all of you haven't said better. Instead, I'll just quote part of the short speech Churchill gave after the victory at El Alamein (a battle in which my father took part). I've merely made a few interlineations, indicated by square brackets, so that the speech better applies to America, in 2018, rather than to England in November 1942. You can find Churchill's original speech here.

Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. but it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning. Henceforth [the Democrats' foot soldiers, including organizations such as Antifa] will meet equally well armed, and perhaps better armed troops. Hence forth they will have to face in many theatres of war that superiority [on college campuses] which they have so often used without mercy against other, of which they boasted all round the world, and which they intended to use as an instrument for convincing all other peoples that all resistance to them was hopeless....

We mean to hold our own. [We normals are not prepared] to preside over the liquidation of [a constitutional America]. For that task, if ever it were prescribed, someone else would have to be found, and, under democracy, I suppose the nation would have to be consulted. I am proud to be a member of that vast [collection of sane, normal people, committed to individual liberty, strong national security, and the free market] without which the good cause might well have perished from the face of the earth. Here we are, and here we stand, a veritable rock of salvation in this drifting world....

[snip]

I recall to you some lines of Byron, which seem to me to fit the event, the hour, and the theme:


Millions of tongues record thee, and anew

Their children's lips shall echo them, and say --

"Here, where the sword united nations drew,

Our countrymen were warring on that day!"

And this is much, and all which will not pass away.

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


Well, there it is!

Make sure to drop by every Monday for the WoW! Magazine Forum. And enjoy WoW! Magazine 24-7 with some of the best stuff written in the 'net. Take from me, you won't want to miss it.








Thursday, September 27, 2018

Forum: If You Could Have A Different Career What Would It Be?



Every week, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question: If You Could Have A Different Career What Would It Be?

Bookworm: I've never liked being a lawyer, although I'm reasonably good at it. It's honed my analytical abilities and my writing skills. It makes possible the blogging I enjoy doing, although I don't seem to be able to make money as a blogger.

What I'd really like to be is a member of the idle rich. My favorite pastimes are reading books; writing short, horribly proofread essays off the top of my head; and eating chocolate ice cream. I'm really not sure there's a career pathway for all of that.

Rob Miller:I have to giggle a little when I think of the word 'career' applied to me.Everything I ever did that was reasonably successful, I just sort of fell into.

One day I accidentally strummed a cheap guitar my parents brought home from a trip to Mexico and fell in love. I never wanted to do anything else afterwards, so that became my 'career.' even if I wasn't earning anything from it. I had a lot of different jobs,(I left home at 18) some of them quite interesting, but they were always just to finance and pave the way towards playing music for a living.

Eventually I managed to do that after a few false starts and made a fairly decent living out of it. It also was something of a fascinating sort of sub culture in which I was a 'semi-celebrity.' In other words, I wasn't any multi- millionaire, but I was known, sort of, whatever that means. I could get into  clubs for free and into their VIP sections all across the country, get backstage at concerts to 'say hello' and enjoy the adult refreshments and other diversions, drink for free in certain watering holes (thank you, Esther and George Wong) meet a lot of interesting people and fulfill a fair amount of fantasies. And the money wasn't bad at all.

The way that sort of ended was that I became a hired hack basically playing music I didn't really like at all for other people.  And for someone who loves music the way I did, that made it just another job, a way to make some money. About that time, I met my wife and we married, and I wasn't exactly rabid with excitement over the offers I had. So I went back to just doing sessions, mostly commercials, and working as a customer service manager for a large office supplies company.

When business went down at the office supply company and I was fired, it was time for another accident in my 'career.' I met an Israeli contractor (we knew some of the same people in Israel) who I got some jobs for in exchange for some baksheesh, and he told me about an Israeli friend of his who was 'doing loans' and that it was commission only, 'but you talk nice to people chaver, and you could make some nice money.'

Well, OK. Todah rabah.

I had a friend who was refinancing her house and I knew she'd give me the job, so I figured I'd do this once, make some money, hate it and move on. The Israeli broker hired me and I proceeded to learn about the paperwork and other things I needed to know. Instead of hating it, once I saw that first commission check I wanted nothing more but to master this new occupation the way a Samurai wanted to master his swordsmanship and do a lot more business.I ended up being pretty good at it.

After three years working for my Israeli boss (lots of fun!), I got my broker's license, opened up my own business and ended up being rather successful. For me, the 1990's and early 2000's were literally golden years. Aside from mortgages and refis, we also listed and sold houses and I also did quite well buying foreclosures once I learned how to do it properly. I'd refurbish them and either sell them or rent them out.

I sold my business right before the nasty stuff hit the fan in 2008, and I'm still not exactly sure why I did but the timing was right.  Now, I'm semi retired, mostly manage my properties, and partner up now and then with a couple of brokers I know to find refurb houses, fix them up, and sell them. It bothers me a bit because it's mostly investors buying them to rent out rather than families who want a home of their own, but so be it.

All in all, considering where I started, I'm quite grateful to the Almighty for the life I have. I wouldn't change a thing.

Jeffrey Avalon Freidberg: Like one of my personal idols, Bookworm, I am really really really good with ice cream.

However, I tend to specialize in Hagen Dazs chocolate covered ice cream popsicles and Julie’s Organic ice cream sandwiches, which kind of limits my style and reach.

I too think I’d be really good at being filthy rich like Diane Feinstein and practically the entire senate.

Amazing how they go to DC poor and leave rich as kings and queens, with unlimited lifetime medical, insurance, pensions, and all....

I guess they get smarter when they get off the bus?

Of course John McCain married the Beer Queen and had so many houses they were almost as many as Obama has—but not as many as John Kerry.

Anyways....

Anyways, I got into the private eye biz by accident and stuck with it for 35 years. I guess I did everything there was to do in that line. I wooda been something else, except I think I liked the private eye gig. I got to be outdoors and run a lot.

Then one day I just could not open one more file and walked away...

...what a DUMB THING TO DO!

Now I have no income, no job, and temp’ services won’t touch me because—even though I built and ran a million dollar business—I don’t appear anywhere in their “categories.” I was never—say—an accountant, lawyer, or secretary. No listing. 

As bugs Bunny said, “Ehhhh...I knew I shoulda took that left toin at Albu-qoikey.”


Laura Rambeau Lee: Once I got past my childhood obsession with dinosaurs and wanting to be an archaeologist I set my sights on becoming a physician. I studied hard and was a pretty good student, often studying beyond what was available in school. Growing up outside of Philadelphia in a small college town the college professors would give me text books which I read voraciously. In junior high I was attacking texts on abnormal psychology, organic chemistry, and books on human anatomy and physiology. I began college with a premed major. That changed when my father died when I was nineteen. At that point I decided I did not want to become a doctor and deal with life and death issues on a daily basis. I quickly lost interest, got married, had a daughter and divorced within six years. At age twenty-five I was a single mom who needed to make money, and make it without a college education. As a vice-president of a local bank my mother introduced me to an owner of a title insurance company and I was hired as a processor. My wages went from $145.00 a week working in a bank to $175.00 a week. That was a big jump back then, especially when child care alone was $45.00 a week.

I learned the business and after a couple of years went to work for an attorney doing real estate closings. Then I went into business with my mother for ten years, she having a mortgage company and me running the title insurance side. After my mom retired my company was bought out by a national title company owned by a national builder. ­(I had let the mortgage company dissolve due to the savings and loan crash in the late 80s early 90s. It became nearly impossible to be a mortgage broker at the time). I worked there for thirteen years until the crash in 2008.

One thing I realized early on was the chairman of the Federal Reserve really controls our country. I would tell people that whoever controls the cost and flow of money controls it all. I was still in my 20s. As I looked into it more I realized how correct I was in my analysis.

Then around 2004 I began to see it coming apart. The mortgages they were selling were certain foreclosures. No doubt about it in my mind. But it became personal when they started selling purchase money first and second mortgages. People could get one hundred percent financing by taking out an eighty percent first mortgage along with a twenty percent second mortgage. They avoided private mortgage insurance and avoided having to put money in escrow with their payments for property taxes and homeowners insurance. We called them NoNo loans – they required no asset and no income verification to qualify for these mortgages, all under full approval of FNMA guidelines. At that point I understood that now we would have a situation where we would have millions of people in homes they couldn’t afford and they would not be able to pay their property taxes either. That would severely cripple our local municipalities and county revenues, meaning we would not have money for schools, firefighters, police, transportation and social services. Where I was naïve was in believing that these lenders would go out of business. I never would have believed our government would steal our savings and wealth to bail out the banks. Americans collectively lost over 19 Trillion Dollars in wealth between savings, stock market accounts and real estate! That was my wake up call. That was my call to action and when I started blogging. It helped that I was laid off from my position as division president of the company I worked for and gave me time to write, get involved with the Tea Party and also help care for my mother who was terminally ill with cancer at the time. I also returned to college to finish my bachelor’s degree, which I did with high honors in American Studies with a major in communication and media. It was also an eye opener to the open Marxist ideology indoctrination occurring on our college and university campuses. I was the token conservative on campus.

Thinking back on everything I am content with the path my life has taken. I am back in the title insurance business, doing real estate closings. It is interesting and challenging and I have always enjoyed the business and the work. I find it amazing that when I was still in college back in 1975 and knowing I no longer wanted to pursue a career in medicine I took a test to see where my interests and abilities might take me. The results came back that a career in politics or the law, or writing and reporting would best serve my personal interests and career goals. Interesting, huh?

Dave Schuler:If I knew then what I know now, I would have swallowed, sucked it up, and remained in the corporate world rather than going off on my own and starting my own business. I would have been less happy then but probably happier now.

 Well, there it is!

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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Forum:Will Judge Kavanaugh Be Confirmed And What Will The Vote Be?



Every week, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question: Will Judge Kavanaugh Be Confirmed And What Will The Vote Be?

Don Surber: Yes.

50-50 with Pence breaking the tie.
Democrats are too dumb to allow Trump State Democrats to save their hides and one of RINOs will bolt.

Rob Miller: I have no doubt Kavanaugh will be joining the Supreme Court.

I see the vote as 52 to 54 in favor, 48 to 46 against, not accounting for any abstentions.

The only Republicans I see trying to sabotage this are Ben Senseless from Nebraska, Jeff Flake from AZ because he's leaving and (long shot) Lisa Murkowski from Alaska. I doubt that Susan Collins votes against Kavanaugh. I've never agreed with her politics, but she has guts and integrity. The threats she's been getting from the Left are exactly the sort of thing to make her dig her heels in. They grow 'em tough in Maine.

The Dems I see crossing over to vote for Kavanaugh are Heidi Hightkamp, Joe Manchin, and Claire McKasskill, with Doug Jones, Jon Tester and Joe Donnelly as possibles. With the exception of Jones (whose going to want to be re-elected in a Trump state) they're all in tough races for re-election in states Trump carried.

As an aside, I think the Dems erred badly in trying to smear Kavanaugh with a #metoo accusation at the last minute by a Left wing nut job. It's like a baseball pitcher with a hot curve ball or fast ball he keeps relying on to do the job. Eventually the batters get wise, expect that it's coming and start
hammering it. As another aside, I'm eagerly waiting a thorough investigation into DiFi's Chinese spy and the huge profits she and her husband made in China.


Jeffrey Avalon Friedberg: Yes he will be confirmed: 53-47.

The Democrat Violent Dementia was just Showtime...and their Audience appears to have been Everybody Else!

Doug Hagin: Yes, he will. Sadly, the Democrats will make it party line, with two maybe three exceptions

Dave Schuler: I agree with Don. Kavanaugh will be confirmed 50-50 with Pence breaking the tie. The vote will be essentially along party lines with Susan Collins joining the Democrats to vote against confirmation.

Bookworm Room: I believe that Judge Kavanaugh will be confirmed despite the latest accusations -- claims that have no contemporaneous corroboration and that come from a hard Left, Bernie-supporting academic. The Left will believe them (or will pretend to believe them), conservatives will not (and will not be pretending), and the Senate will split on straight party lines. The only risk is that Sen. Collins will have a panic attack, but I think Trump will call her with something akin to Margaret Thatcher's famous reminder to Ronald Reagan not to go "wobbly."

Laura Rambeau Lee: : One thing we can count on. The left always resorts to unsubstantiated claims of sexual misconduct when they have nothing else. They bring forth salacious unproveable accusations from, this time, a lefty professor related to an “incident” that happened over three decades ago in high school and then go on the Sunday morning mainstream media circus circuit, expressing the need for a delay in the vote until everything is thoroughly investigated. The fact that Senator Dianne Feinstein knew in July and kept this information from everyone throughout the personal meetings and public “inquisition” of Judge Kavanaugh until the final week of the process proves they have nothing valid to use as a reason for denying his appointment.

Judge Kavanaugh will be confirmed. He is extremely qualified and as an originalist who believes in a strict textual interpretation of the Constitution will ensure the court remains conservative for decades to come. His nomination affirms again that our vote for President Trump was the right one for the future of our country.

One has to believe there are a few Democrats who remain silent but are appalled by the tactics of those within their party. The vote will be close, perhaps 52 or 53, but in the end Brett Kavanaugh will be appointed to the Supreme Court.

Well, there it is!

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Wednesday, September 12, 2018



Every week, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question: What's Your Reaction to Barack Hussein Obama's New Speech?

 Jeffrey Avalon Friedberg: I  didn’t read it, or hear it.

Obama, is—and has always been—a lying bastard. 

1. He lied some 32 times about Obamacare.
 2. His “parents” were never legally married.

Also, what the hell is the deal here ?

Obama was born a Muslim, and is still alive, so, he must still—according to Sharia Law—be a Muslim.

His legal name after he was adopted by his Indonesian stepfather is Barry Soetoro, and he has never, ever legally changed it to his self-chosen, warlike, Arabic names. And there is no evidence—not anywhere—that he has done so.

Early written material, apparently published by him, says he was born in Kenya.

His alleged birth certificate—to me, and I have seen many of them in 35 years as a licensed private investigator—appears to be a poorly made, computer-generated fraud.

Both times he was “elected” he was secretly sworn in twice—each time. Using both alleged names?

Records about his life and education are sealed and not available to anybody.

Who is he?

 Patrick O'Hannigan: My answer isn't as colorful as Jeffrey's, but I did not read or listen to Obama's recent speech, either. I was amused by one caller I heard on Rush Limbaugh's show, where Ken Matthews (?) was guest hosting. The caller said Obama had tried to take credit for the Trump economy. He said that reminded him of when he was a kid, and his mother would strive to open a peanut butter jar before giving up and handing it to him. When he then opened the jar, she'd say, "See! I loosened it for ya." But the funny analogy did not quite fit (according to the caller), because Obama not only did NOT "loosen the lid" for Donald Trump; he (Obama) was twisting it the wrong way.

Rob Miller: I did see it, as well as a transcript. One thing few people noticed is that Obama didn't once refer to his successor as  'President Trump.' 

Other than that, it was quite typical. Filled with classless behavior, mistruths, self-aggrandizement and whining while taking credit for the work and accomplishments of far better men as well as lying about his own 'accomplishments.'

What were they?

He weakened America at every turn, from our military to our basic institutions like the courts, our healthcare system and academia. He came close to ruining the economy and ran up more debt with less to show for it than all his predecessors combined. He exacerbated racial tensions, happily militarized government agencies to go after those he considered his political foes and ended by gifting our sworn enemy, one who was complicit in 9/11 with billions of dollars.

 It doesn't matter, really. The Left will always love him , because he came the closest of any American president of turning America into a socialist hellhole. And of course, because he was the first black president, which also kept him from being investigated and impeached.

He got every benefit and boost up the ladder America has to offer and worked for very little of it. The historians in academia  will paint him in glowing terms, but he remains a classic example of the bird who deliberately crapped in his own nest and did his best to foul it beyond redemption.

Fausta Rodriquez Wertz: I wasn't interested in watching. Former president. Yesterday's news.

Laura Rambeau LeeI had two immediate reactions.  President Obama, you didn’t build that! And thankfully …President Obama is #NotMyPresident anymore.

  Well, there it is!

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Tuesday, September 04, 2018

Forum: What Will Trump Do About Social Media Bias And Censorship?



Every week, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question: What Will Trump Do About Social Media Bias And Censorship?

Jeffrey Avalon Friedberg: What would I do? That’s simple, but not “polite,” because the time for that is long past.

Legally: I would....

I would do something to make their by-now-puckering asses hurt really really really really really bad.

I would do something they cannot afford.

I would lock up as many as possible and keep them there—witnesses, protection—whatever.

I would start the break up of any monopoly.

I would shut them all down as much as possible any way allowed.

Legally.

What will Trump do? Something similar to maybe only part of the above, but he will also make their heads explode via his Tweets, etc.—and spread their madness, like a plague of fleas up their hairy undies.

He will allow it to go on until it is much worse, and then he will set his machinery in motion.

Right now, this (his machinery) is all just waiting, poised—on standby....

“...not polite....”
Rob Miller : I think there's some real meat here, and ironically, the Obama Administration paved the way. For one thing, the major Social Media sites are obviously colluding to effect the coming election. That's illegal, especially since these sites call themselves public platforms. They also have a clear record of discrimination against certain points of view based on their own arbitrary whims, which are kept secret precisely so that they can be used in an arbitrary way and never ever revealed, merely referred to as 'community standards.' Since these are also media companies, this may very well be an FCC violation since sites that are banned or discriminated against in such a fashion are never informed of what violations they may have committed, if any. That is, besides having conservative views.

This combined with their open efforts to collude to influence elections could be real red meat. It might even lead to an anti-trust suit. And certainly to FCC and IRS examinations of, respectively, their corporate practices from a media standpoint and their finances, both on a corporate level and a personal one for their major executives.

Yes, these are private companies, but such companies have been successfully sued before for restraint of trade or other monopolistic practices. We'll see.

At the very least considering how these companies bowed down to the Chinese and the EU, it might make them a lot less likely to act in such a biased manner.

Patrick O'Hannigan: I can't remember where I first saw the idea (meaning either at "Instapundit" or "Ace of Spades"), but I do think the president and his administration can exploit the legal differences between "platforms" and "publishers." Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media players like to think of themselves as platforms, because that allows them the fig leaf of neutrality between competing points of view. There are people who make a good case that these technologies are not platforms, so much as publishing apparatuses (apparati?). Publishers can be sued for libel, among other things. The other thing President Trump could do continues his current strategy of tweeting to his heart's content, knowing that his tweets drive people crazy, while continuing to appoint lower-court judges, keep an eye on the FCC, etc. It's sleight-of-hand, and it lets the president take advantage of the manufactured outrage directed against him 24/7 to get things done while the media wastes time on stupid questions like whether he honored the late Senator John McCain sufficiently (FWIW, I'm of the opinion that honors for McCain were over the top to begin with. Ronald Reagan didn't get such fulsome praise when he died, and he'd done more for this country. Moreover, when Jeff Flake ("the other Senator from Arizona") said of his late colleague, "Now he belongs to the ages," he was deliberately borrowing a line first used by then Secretary of War Edwin Stanton to describe Abraham Lincoln at Lincoln's death bed -- and John McCain was not in Lincoln's class).

Don Surber: President Trump knows the limitations of his power as president; he hasn't fired Mueller. He will not use the government against the media.

But he also knows his power as the head of a rebellion, and he will continue to push back. Public opinion will change behaviors at Twitter and Facebook.

He is a president the Founding Fathers imagined: a fellow who actually puts country first, upholds the Constitution, respects the office, and does not abuse the power.

The reason is simple, he does not need the job. Fame and fortune, he had. He is an altruistic president along the lines of Coolidge, Eisenhower, and Reagan. He saw a need and filled it.

These are the best eight years of our lives. Enjoy. Mock the media and the critics, and have a blast!

Laura Rambeau Lee: President Trump understands the Constitutional limitations of his power, unlike his predecessor. In his position he speaks loudly and often on behalf of conservative voices and the unfair bias against them by the left-leaning social media platforms.

Hopefully he will continue being our tireless advocate and publicly bring attention and call out the media for their bias. The technology that allows us to communicate with one another can be a double edged sword, especially with the power and control being in the hands of very few individuals. It is up to Congress to pass laws against censorship and to protect everyone’s right to free speech. Our representatives must assure we all receive equal access and our voices not be censored with this rapidly growing and powerful technology. It’s great to know we have such a vocal advocate in the White House.

  Well, there it is!

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Monday, August 27, 2018

Forum: What Effect Will Michael Cohen's Plea Bargain Have?




Every Monday, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question
:What Effect Will Michael Cohen's Plea Bargain Have?

Rob Miller
: This is pretty simple to understand. Mueller has Cohen cold for massive tax evasion, none of which had anything to do with the president. In exchange for leniency on those actual crimes, Cohen was prepared to say absolutely anything Mueller wanted.Mueller was even allowed to violate attorney-client privilege to set this up.

The plea bargain works for both Mueller and Cohen quite well, because now these allegations won't go to trial because there won't be one. It will be simply Cohen's word against the president, with the media of course trumpeting Cohen's nonsense and any other garbage Mueller twists his arm to make up...just more BS to float on the water and dirty it. and meanwhile, the Left can keep yelling 'impeachment! impeachment! just to keep it in the voter's minds until the midterms.

As for Lanny Davis, he should be disbarred for (a)not lodging motions protesting against the violation of attorney -client privilege (b) allowing his client to plead guilty to a non-existent crime and (c) damaging his cliet's chance for a pardon from Trump by deliberately telling the world Cohen won't accept one! No legitimate lawyer representing his client would ever be this derelict, but of course Lanny Davis is in this for Bill and Hill and isn't interested in actually representing Michael Cohen except as it suits Mueller. Davis is in this up to his neck.

To fully understand what a partisan jihad is going on here, consider this...Mueller's assignment from Assistant AG Rosenstein was to investigate Russian collusion that could have influenced the election.Mueller has never investigated Hillary Clinton and the DNC's collusion in commissioning Fusion GPS's bogus 'pee dossier' which was oppo research definitely designed to influence the election, now has he? Nope, it's all about Trump and certainly not about possible Russian collusion in the election.

Jeffrey Avalon Friedberg: The actual purpose of a plea bargain is to “lock in” or guarantee an outcome of the arrest and prosecution of an accused perpetrator. It saves either side from getting a worse result than might be expected, and either side profits in some way by the “bargain.”

The defendant gains a concession from the prosecutor. The prosecutor secures a guilty “plea” from the defendant.

However, the real, legal effect on President Donald H. Trump will be zero. Cohen must walk a tightrope. If he f*cks up again he faces a much more powerful enemy in Trump than Mueller.

All sorts of local color, media innuendo, and Chyron generated flash will fly, but, in the end, the only ones truly affected will be der Jude, und Herr Sonderstaatsanwalt.

Laura Rambeau Lee: Not one of us who voted for Trump believed he was of impeccable character. Nothing that has been revealed rises to the level of impeachable or illegal activity. Hey, at least he used his own money to pay off porn stars and bimbos, unlike Congress which had a slush fund of taxpayer money just for the purpose of paying off and silencing their accusers. Michael Cohen’s plea bargain will have no effect on President Trump, except for the non-stop media analysis and legal conjecture. The frenzy must continue, relentless and at all costs.

James Kirwin: Unfortunately more effect than it should have. Judging by the non-stop media coverage you would think Trump had been the Manchurian Candidate controlled by Putin and elected through Russian manipulation of the election.

Instead what I’ve had to remind myself is that the Russians spent a few hundred grand on Facebook and Trump paid off an accuser for ½ as much as #METOO Queen Asia Argento did – or rather Anthony Bourdain did on Argento’s behalf. Maybe Bourdain should have hired Cohen. Evidently that lawyer knows how to cut a deal.

I also have to remind myself that nothing Trump did with these women was in the Oval Office unlike the mess Bill Clinton left on an intern’s dress, and which he twisted the meaning of the simplest verb in the English language: Is.

Meanwhile Clinton’s wife operated a server hacked by everyone and received no punishment – unlike a sailor who took a picture of a submarine interior to brag to his family and received a court martial and prison sentence that took Trump’s pardon to fix.

After a year and a half and tens of millions of dollars, is this the best Mueller can do? I’d almost like to see Trump tweet, “Yeah I did it with a porn star. I apologized to my wife and paid her off with my own money, but hey, it was a porn star and not an intern – and not in the Oval Office.” So what? French President Francois Mitterand’s mistress walked behind his casket at his state funeral alongside his wife. Kissinger said “power is the ultimate aphrodisiac,” and Trump had its runner-up money. Is he an idiot for cheating on his (admittedly hot) wife? Sure – but as someone who doesn’t care about who he sleeps with and is concerned about the future of our country, I am more worried about jobs and the strength of America’s enemies abroad.

So far the Economy is doing the best since the Reagan era, and our enemies abroad are the weakest they’ve been since 9-11. I am pleased with both and credit Trump for their successes.

But the constant media frenzy conflating Stormy Daniels with Putin will likely continue. And it sucks.

Dave Schuler
:An impeachable offense is anything the House thinks it is. A Congress with a Republican majority will never impeach an even notionally Republican president with an approval rating of 43% let alone try and remove. With as much fan-dancing as they've been doing for the last year and a half a Congress with a Democratic majority will find it difficult not to impeach and, possibly, remove. This despite that a President Pence is probably their worst nightmare.

I have no idea. I think that the Mueller investigation will continue until one of three things happens: something serious is uncovered (a prospect that becomes less likely with every passing day), Trump is no longer president, or Mueller is dismissed.

Don Surber
: The effect is the Left has succeeded in ending lawyer-client privilege. There is nothing in civilized society that the Left would not destroy for an edge. Ruthless.

 Well, there it is!

Make sure to drop by every Monday for the WoW! Magazine Forum. And enjoy WoW! Magazine 24-7 with some of the best stuff written in the 'net. Take from me, you won't want to miss it.


Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Forum: Are China And The US Headed For War?



Every Monday, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's question
: Are China And The US Headed For War?

Jeffrey Avalon Friedberg: War?

No.

One thing China is not: is stupid.

China can do much better on its Long March by simply stripping Earth away from the Americans, one sliver at a time, piece by piece, bit by bit.

They can do this in terms of physically taking things, such as our technology, American real estate, or by extending influence, as in Latin America, and actually being welcomed in.

Then, one day, poof! They are the majority—at a pinnacle of the majors—and are in control.

In this non-nuclear manner they can preserve a lot of real estate and personnel. I mean—none of the Chinese leaders want to live underground or in a nuclear cook-oven, am I right?

Right.

In the interim—there’s no rush. And it’s just a game. When the time comes, they can win. And nobody—like maybe the Rooskies—will be able to step in and take over the hand they are playing.

In a nuclear war with the USA they will be degraded militarily, financially, and morally, to a point where they will probably be overthrown by a sea of people who just want to eat....

...And who want to have some fun in life and living.

Rob Miller: To answer this question properly, it's helpful to know something about Chinese history and culture.

China has always been more concerned with keeping the quong fai (foreign devils) out then in expanding it's own territory. That's what the Great Wall was all about. Like Japan, China essentially was a closed society for centuries.

In the 1400s, China had the greatest seagoing fleet in the world, up to 3,500 ships at its peak.  Some of them were five times the size of the ships being built in Europe at the time. But by 1525, all of China's "Treasure Fleet" ships had been destroyed -- burned in their docks or left to rot by the government as the Ming Dynasty entered a 200-year-long period of isolationist slumber.

That ended with the Opium wars of the mid-nineteenth century, referred to quite accurately by the Chinese as 'the years of humiliation. Essentially, the Chinese wanted the very lucrative opium trade the British enjoyed stopped. The British actually went to war in 1839 to force the Chinese to keep importing this poison, and ended up with China ceding the Hong Kong island to Britain as well as 'treaty ports' at Shanghai, Canton, Ningpo (Ningbo), Foochow (Fuzhou), and Amoy. France secured concessions on the same terms as the British, in treaties of 1843 and 1844.

The second Opium War, fought from 1856–1860 actually increased the concessions to Britain and other European countries as well as the amount of the trade in opium. Russia also seized Chinese territory. And the hideous invasion of China by Japan was a major disaster. Aside from the loss of territory, the Japanese committed major atrocities.An untold number of Chinese civilians were literally murdered, whole cities were destroyed, thousands of Chinese young women (as well as Koreans and Filipinas) were kidnapped and forced into prostitution as 'comfort girls' for the Japanese military, and bizarre 'experiments' on human beings were conducted, especially in Manchuria (Manchuko).

My point here is that all this emphasized something to the Chinese...that foreigners were not to be trusted, and neither were China's corrupt governments. Most Americans underestimate the enormous achievement of Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger in overcoming all this history and opening up China again.

I've been fascinated with Chinese culture for quite some time. In fact, I almost married a delightful Chinese girl who lived in Queens, the only woman I ever seriously considered marrying until I met my beloved. Among other things I learned from my Chinese girlfriend was how to play the Chinese game of Go. Understanding Go is a key to understanding how the Chinese think.

Western tactics are based on chess, which involves 'killing off' your opponent's power pieces, occupying territory on the board and surrounding the king to the point that any move the King makes results in the king's 'death.'

In Go, the idea is to not to occupy territory but to control access to territory, to make your opponent's 'soldiers' useless. There are no power pieces per se.

That's what the Chinese have been doing for some time, with trade agreements and lately, using a strategy of loans to both developing and developed countries like South Africa. It works like this...the Chinese loan money to these countries in exchange for trade concessions, with economically or strategically  beneficial resources as collateral. When the loans (which deliberately have terms very difficult for these countries to meet) are defaulted on, China gets control, sometimes with an additional loan as a sweetener. These are Go tactics.

Are the U.S. and China headed for war? Possible, but I doubt it.

For a quarter of a century, China enjoyed dealing with three of the worst U.S. presidents in history. The corrupt Bill Clinton, who the Chinese bought via a one million dollar loan after he lost the New Hampshire primary via his China connection, his  old friends and campaign donors the Riyadis. And
 then there was the Clueless George W. Bush, and the openly anti-American Barack Hussein Obama.
All of them allowed the Chinese as well as friendly American companies to export jobs wholesale to China while allowing cheap Chinese goods to flood the market. Both Clinton and Obama also cut back hugely on America's military. Clinton even  used heavy Democratic party donor and defense contractor Loral to funnel advanced military technology to the Chinese as fast as he could sign the paperwork. Most military analysts estimate that the Chinese made a Great Leap Forward of at least two decades in military technology during the eight years of Clinton's two terms.

A big part of the recent tension has to do with the fact that  the Chinese, having grown used to pushovers like this are now faces with an entirely different president in Donald J. Trump. The concept of intellectual piracy, copyrights and patents are foreign to the Chinese. They now have a president to deal with who insists on their honoring these precepts, and who is willing to use tariffs and even sanctions to change the unequal trade deals China has enjoyed for years.

What the Chinese are doing now, I think, is circling the wagons. Many of the armaments, like shore to ship missiles are designed to be defensive in nature, and it's worth remembering that China has only engaged in wars on their borders, in places like northern India, Tibet and North Korea. Even their new island fortresses in the China Sea could reasonably be seen as defensive in nature.

I see Xi's new role as emperor ( and I wouldn't call it anything else) and its more recent totalitarian conduct on the home front to be troubling signs, even something of a throwback to the bad old days of the Cultural Revolution, but not necessarily signs of upcoming hostilities. China needs the American market badly, a war would gain them nothing and might even result in domestic turbulence as jobs disappear and domestic supplies of staples increase in price.

Another sign is that Chinese with money have heavily invested here in America, especially in real estate. They understand that if their money's here, the Chinese government can't confiscate it. Remember what I wrote earlier about the basic Chinese skeptical attitude towards their government.

Don Surber:Red China and the USA are in a trade war and have been for 20 years. The Bushes and Clinton allowed Red China to steal technology, manipulate currency, and otherwise wreak havoc with trade.

The weasels who call this free trade are traitors. Let's look at the facts. For every $1 we sell in goods to China, we buy $4 worth of their goods. We are a thoroughbred running against a plow horse and losing because we are hobbled by environmental, labor, and other regulations.

Consider coal mining. The nation's coal mines recorded 15 deaths last year, including eight in West Virginia.

According to Xinhua, the number of deaths in 2017 in China's coal sector was 375.

We finally have a president who is a master of negotiating and an astute student of Sun Tzu. Scot Adams of Dilbert fame calls President Donald John Trump a wizard. Everything you know about President Trump through the media is a lie because he throws them off scent every step of the way.

The Chinese cannot fathom him. They are communists, a sheeplike people with great credentials but no intellectual curiosity. Their ideology requires a conformity that would be amusing if not for the deaths of tens of milions in the name of their religion. Muslims are nowhere near as bloody.

President Trump is an entrepreneur who thinks outside of the box. He lives to negotiate. He already has plucked the Korean Peninsula from Red China. Korea has been a protectorate of China going back 1,400 years although the Japanese held it from 1910 to 1945. (You could say World War II began before World War I.)

There is no doubt that Kim Jong Un is on our side. He is dismantling his nuke program. Compare how healthy and alert the last three hostages Kim gave us compared to the condition of Otto Warmbier. Something happened between June 2017 and May 2018 that turned Kim around. Just what, we can only guess at. Why, we know. President Trump flipped Kim, likely on a personal level as he did with Kanye West.

The answer to your question is yes, we are in a war -- a trade war - and we have turned the tide. Chairman Xi should surrender now while his economy is damaged but still alive.

Iran is on deck, and Russia needs to clean up its act.

Meanwhile, the European Union wants to cut a deal. Mexico is cutting a deal. Japan and South Korea have made their deals.

While he is doing all this, President Trump also has to deal with a witch hunt, work on immigration, and get his judges and justices confirmed.

He still finds time to golf on weekends.

Doug Hagin:Very doubtful. Not anytime soon anyway. And our currently having a strong president is a large deterrent to China. Another reason 2020 is so important.

David Schuler: here's more than one answer to that question. The first answer is that we've been at war with China for at least the last 20 years and maybe as long as the last 70 years. For the last several decades American companies, looking at a market of a billion prospective customers with dollars signs in their eyes, have convinced the politicians of both political parties that we're not. You need only look at the precipitous drop in U. S. manufacturing employment after the admission of China to the WTO, pictured below:

https://fred.stlouisfed.org/graph/fredgraph.png?g=kRPz

to recognize that as nothing short of economic warfare. Additionally, if you take the various pronouncements of Chinese officials on trade and foreign policy it is quite clear that they view them as zero-sum games, transactions with one winner and one loser.

The other answer is that we need not be headed for war with China. It would be a choice not an inevitability. If the Chinese leadership realized just how deadly war with the U. S. could be for them and everything and everybody they know, there would be no chance of war. But there are so many saber-rattlers on both sides of the relationship I think there is a genuine danger of war with China.

Laura Rambeau Lee: Yes, it appears China’s goal is to draw us into a war and we better be prepared. We are late in realizing just how great a threat China is to the west and the free world. We must secure our alliances and assure them we will be there to fight with them to oppose this existential threat. It’s not a matter of if, but when.

 Well, there it is!

Make sure to drop by every Monday for the WoW! Magazine Forum. And enjoy WoW! Magazine 24-7 with some of the best stuff written in the 'net. Take from me, you won't want to miss it.