Friday, September 07, 2012

The Council Has Spoken!! This Week's Watcher's Council Results

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week's Watcher's Council match up.

But before we get to this week's results, we have some highly important business to attend to.

Today in Terresa Monroe-Hamilton of The Noisy Room's birthday!!!!

In searching for a cake, I wanted something sweet, yet evocative of our very own Warrior Princess, so I finally settled on a luscious Dutch chocolate with real blueberry frosting ( woad, you know) for a suitable design...

And Louis Roederer Cristal Brut, in honor of the occasion:

One thing I continue to find fascinating about the blogosphere is the people you meet, especially when you rarely if ever meet them in person. While the cliche about the internet is that you're anonymous, the truth is that when you interact over time, you become anything but, simply because the usual trappings and distractions are removed and the essence of the person remains.

Bookworm, if I remember right, called these 'soul friendships' and that's actually not a bad way of putting it.

I remember the first time I ran into the Noisy Room, and the first impression that struck me was that this was a writer with strong feelings who was absolutely unafraid to follow those feelings to the bitter end and express them forcefully. I got that one right!

I definitely knew she belonged on the Council. I got that one right too.

But as I got to know her better, I found out there's another side to her as well. Terresa is the kind of friend who goes out of her way to lend a helping hand, to cheer people on ( and cheer them up when its needed) and has the rare quality of being able to simply be there when you need her. It's almost like she senses it.

In short, I'm glad I know her.

Have an absolutely fabulous birthday M'Dear. Many, many more.

OK, now to our other business:

We saw an astounding moment in American politics occur this week. As at least half (and probably more) of the delegates on the floor at the Democratic national convention tried to vote down including references to G-d and Jerusalem as Israel's capital in the party platform, and booed loudly and raged when those changes were shoved through over the obvious wishes of the assembled delegates in spite of the proposed amendment clearly not getting the required two thirds majority after three futile tries.

What brought all this on was the astounding changes to the language of the 2012 Democrat platform as compared to what was in there in 2008. When that shocked people and didn't poll well, the Democrat leadership was forced to scramble to try and change it, and a fiasco ensued, on nation wide television and viral video before the whole country.

As this week's winner, Joshuapundit's The Dilemma Of Jewish Democrats And This Year’s Anti-Israel Party Platform reveals, not only was the language on G-d and on Jerusalem struck out, but virtually every other piece of pro-Israel language, including the basics about any future Palestinian state being dependent on an agreement between the two parties. Most of it is still gone. And to say the least, this poses something of a dilemma for many pro-Israel Democrats. Here's a slice:

This year's Democratic Party Platform is an interesting document to read. Aside from radical stances on things like same sex marriage and unlimited, government funded abortion on demand including partial birth abortion, it's noteworthy in that it focuses on attacking Mitt Romney by name rather than merely stating the party's position on the issues. This use of platform planks as attack vehicles is something unique in the history of platforms from either party.

One interesting part of this year's Democrat party platform is its anti-Israel language. In order to appreciate exactly how anti-Israel it is, it is necessary to compare it with the 2008 Democrat platform. Let's look at it:

For more than three decades, Israelis, Palestinians, Arab leaders, and the rest of the world have looked to America to lead the effort to build the road to a secure and lasting peace. Our starting point must always be our special relationship with Israel, grounded in shared interests and shared values, and a clear, strong, fundamental commitment to the security of Israel, our strongest ally in the region and its only established democracy. That commitment, which requires us to ensure that Israel retains a qualitative edge for its national security and its right to self-defense, is all the more important as we contend with growing threats in the region–a strengthened Iran, a chaotic Iraq, the resurgence of Al Qaeda, the reinvigoration of Hamas and Hezbollah. We support the implementation of the memorandum of understanding that pledges $30 billion in assistance to Israel over the next decade to enhance and ensure its security.

It is in the best interests of all parties, including the United States, that we take an active role to help secure a lasting settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with a democratic, viable Palestinian state dedicated to living in peace and security side by side with the Jewish State of Israel. To do so, we must help Israel identify and strengthen those partners who are truly committed to peace, while isolating those who seek conflict and instability, and stand with Israel against those who seek its destruction.

The United States and its Quartet partners should continue to isolate Hamas until it renounces terrorism, recognizes Israel's right to exist, and abides by past agreements. Sustained American leadership for peace and security will require patient efforts and the personal commitment of the President of the United States. The creation of a Palestinian state through final status negotiations, together with an international compensation mechanism, should resolve the issue of Palestinian refugees by allowing them to settle there, rather than in Israel.

All understand that it is unrealistic to expect the outcome of final status negotiations to be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949. Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel. The parties have agreed that Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations. It should remain an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths.

As you know, the Obama Administration ignored most of this and has both funded and legitimized Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood while strongly pressuring Israel to retreat to the indefensible 1948 border lines, not recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capitol and supporting the re-division of the city so that it is not accessible to people of all faiths...especially Jews. In fact, the Obama Administration went so far as to actually lie about the commitments made to Israel on Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria by President Bush as part of the Road Map...the same ones mentioned in the Democrat's 2008 platform!

So now, let's take a look at the new, improved 2012 Democrat Platform. It's much more honest, in that a great deal of the pro-Israel language from 2008 has simply been excised:

President Obama and the Democratic Party maintain an unshakable commitment to Israel’s security. A strong and secure Israel is vital to the United States not simply because we share strategic interests, but also because we share common values. For this reason, despite budgetary constraints, the President has worked with Congress to increase security assistance to Israel every single year since taking office, providing nearly $10 billion in the past three years. The administration has also worked to ensure Israel’s qualitative military edge in the region. And we have deepened defense cooperation – including funding the Iron Dome system – to help Israel address its most pressing threats, including the growing danger posed by rockets and missiles emanating from the Gaza Strip, Lebanon, Syria, and Iran. The President’s consistent support for Israel’s right to defend itself and his steadfast opposition to any attempt to delegitimize Israel on the world stage are further evidence of our enduring commitment to Israel’s security.

It is precisely because of this commitment that President Obama and the Democratic Party seek peace between Israelis and Palestinians. A just and lasting Israeli-Palestinian accord, producing two states for two peoples, would contribute to regional stability and help sustain Israel’s identity as a Jewish and democratic state. At the same time, the President has made clear that there will be no lasting peace unless Israel’s security concerns are met. President Obama will continue to press Arab states to reach out to Israel. We will continue to support Israel’s peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan, which have been pillars of peace and stability in the region for many years. And even as the President and the Democratic Party continue to encourage all parties to be resolute in the pursuit of peace, we will insist that any Palestinian partner must recognize Israel’s right to exist, reject violence, and adhere to existing agreements.

Note what's missing? Nothing about isolating Hamas. Nothing about Jerusalem being Israel's undivided capital accessible to all faiths. Nothing about the 1948 cease fire lines that left Israel with a narrow neck 9 miles wide being unrealistic. And significantly. nothing about an Israeli-Arab peace accord being a product of final status negotiations between the parties, which leaves open the possibility of an attempt to force a 'settlement' on Israel via UN diktat, backed, of course, by President Obama and the United States.

And unlike the 2008 platform, nothing in it that rules out American support for swamping what's left of Israel with genocidal 'refugees', the so-called Palestinian right of return.

In our Non-Council category, the winner was Victor Davis Hanson's The Terrifying New Normal submitted by Bookworm Room. It's an excellent essay (has Victor Davis Hanson ever written a bad one?)on exactly where and why the malaise on our economy is occurring and what is happening as many baby boomers can no longer afford to retire, the so-called lost generation is increasingly unable to find work and the only growth industries seem to be government jobs paid for with borrowed money.Do read it.

OK, here are this week’s full results. Only Gay Patriot was unable to vote, but was not subject to the 2/3 vote penalty:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week! Don't forget to tune in on Monday AM for this week's Watcher's Forum, as the Council and their invited special guests take apart one of the provocative issues of the day with short takes and weigh in...don't you dare miss it. And don't forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.....'cause we're cool like that!

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