Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Gun Confiscation Myth Called The Gun Show Loop Hole

Having been to a few of these myself, I always meant to tackle this one...but fortunately, The Washington Time's Emily Miller saved me the trouble, and did it superbly. Here's a slice:

Currently, a gun owner who goes to a retail shop to purchase a gun from a licensed dealer is subject to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. The system, run by the FBI reviews criminal history, mental health and restraining-order records to weed out those who are legally barred from gun ownership.

The gun grabbers’ real goal has always been universal registration, and tracking every gun owner in the country would be a big step in that direction.

“The law already requires licensed gun dealers to run background checks, and over the last 14 years that’s kept 1.5 million of the wrong people from getting their hands on a gun,” said Mr. Obama, when he announced his gun-violence task force results on Jan. 16. “But it’s hard to enforce that law when as many as 40 percent of all gun purchases are conducted without a background check.”

The 40 percent figure that Mr. Obama and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, California Democrat, cite so frequently comes from a 1997 Justice Department survey. A closer look at that 40 percent number reveals it includes 29 percent of gun owners who said they got their guns from family members or friends and acquaintances.

That leaves 11 percent of firearms obtained through unfamiliar people. Of these, 3 percent reported they got their firearms “through the mail,” a process that requires a background check from a federally licensed firearms dealer. Four percent said “other,” and 4 percent made their purchase at a gun show.

The “gun-show loophole” is an exaggeration designed to foster the false impression that this is how the bad guys acquire firearms. A 2001 Justice Department survey found 0.7 percent of state and federal prison inmates bought their weapons at a gun show.

Seven tenths of one percent. That's a pretty fair distance away from forty per cent.

As Ms. Miller writes, gun shows are mostly populated by fully licensed dealers who are required to comply with the law and must run the background check at the time of sale. Anybody who's been to one can tell you that. The miniscule percentage of illegal sales are between people who aren't going to pay attention to any new laws anyway.Those people will always be able to obtain a firearm, even if they have to open a criminally negligent newspaper like New York's Star-Ledger to find out who owns them and plan a break in.

The idea here is to set things up for eventual confiscation, and to ban any private transactions, gifts or bequests of an individual's private property.

This is simply making law abiding citizens defenseless and penalizing them for what criminals do. The Feinstein Bill makes as much sense as banning the ownership of private cars because some people drive drunk, negligently or stoned and kill far more people than firearms do.

Proof The Germans Are Smarter About Egypt And Islamists Than Obama - Morsi Goes Home Empty Handed

 Morsi Meets Merkel: Visit Dashes Hopes for Quick Aid

As you may remember, aside from empowering the Muslim Brotherhood in their takeover of Egypt, the Obama Administration is actually funding the party, continuing Egypt's $1.5 billion in military aid, (which the Egyptian military uses in part to fund the civilian businesses it owns) gifting Egypt over $1 billion in debt forgiveness and lobbying the IMF on Egypt's behalf to grant the Islamist government a badly needed loan.

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood president Mohammed Morsi's remarks that have recently surfaced referring to Jews as 'the descendants of apes and pigs' along with a few other choice epithets haven't fazed the Obama Administration one bit, although there are still members of Congress putting as hold on a shipment of F-16s and Abrams tanks the Obama Administration wants to send Morsi's way.

Not so in Germany.

Morsi went there seeking direct aid from Germany, as well as $324 million in debt forgiveness. The German response ? Nein, although Chancellor Merkel, practical hausfrau that she is at heart,  did give him some advice on fixing Egypt's problems:

 "What matters now is that the work that needs be done, gets done," she said. Against the backdrop of turmoil in Egypt, the chancellor told Morsi that sturdy economic development contributed to political stability.

The Germans, for reasons that can be easily imagined are extraordinarily sensitive to manifestations of Jew hatred that recall the bad old days, and Morsi's rants guaranteed him a frosty reception in Germany.

Morsi, for his part, claims the remarks were taken out of context, a pretty obvious lie since  his  remarks were videotaped, happened on multiple occasions and we're talking about a direct Qu'ran quotation. What was good enough for President Obama and Secretary Clinton simply didn't fly with the Germans. As a matter of fact, Germany recently declared a new travel warning, advising Germans to stay away from the Egyptian Museum in central Cairo, one of the most popular tourist sites in the country. Or at least, it used to be.

Chancellor Merkel also advised Morsi to work more closely with the Egyptian opposition to make the country more democratic and to modify the Islamist 'constitution' to guarantee more protection for civil liberties and more rights for non-Muslims and women.

I doubt that will happen, particularly if one of Morsi's long time associates who left the Brotherhood is right about whom Morsi really is.

The Ikhwan, the Muslim Brotherhood has a long history of using deception to fool its enemies.

IDF Takes Out Syrian Arms Convoy En Route To Hezbollah

 IAF plane takes part in maneuvers [file]

Well, here's some good news to start the morning off with.

The IDF went into action and its pilots destroyed an arms convey en route from Syria to Hezbollah's bases in Lebanon. No one's certain whether the shipment contained any of Assad's chemical weapons, but it apparently did contain a number of sophisticated anti-aircraft and anti-tank missiles like the Russian-made SA-17s.

The SA-17s are not the kind of toys Israel would want Hezbollah getting its paws on. The self propelled anti-aircraft missiles are very portable and fairly good in trained hands at hitting something like an F-16 flying at a low altitude. And because the SA-17 and its launching system are easily moved, they're harder to trace and could constitute a surprise for jets flying within its range and not suspecting their deployment at a given target.

Thanks to the IDF, the SA-17s and the other goodies Assad was shipping to Hezbollah are about as dangerous now as last year's burned out Fourth of July fireworks.

Kol Hakavod! Nice shootin'....

You'll recall that I speculated here based on info from Iranian defector and ex-Revolutionary Guards commander Reza Khalili that in retaliation for what the Iranians believe is Israel's complicity in the massive explosion at the Fordow nuclear weapons facility, the Ayatollah's had ordered Hezbollah to launch a missile strike at Israel. That, of course, would launch another war between Israel and Lebanon.

As I also mentioned, the Iranians recently doubled down on Syria, sending in troops and armor to support his regime. Part of the price for that was almost certainly the transfer of some of Assad's arsenal to Hezbollah, and it looks like this was the first installment.

The Israelis certainly seem to think something is in the works. Record numbers of them are updating their gas masks, fixing up their safe rooms and getting prepared for what might be coming.

Stay tuned....

Soccer Dad's MidEast Media Sampler, 1/30/13

Today's sampler and analysis of Mideast media content from my pal Soccer Dad:

In a New York Times op-ed nearly two years ago, Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas wrote:
Palestine’s admission to the United Nations would pave the way for the internationalization of the conflict as a legal matter, not only a political one. It would also pave the way for us to pursue claims against Israel at the United Nations, human rights treaty bodies and the International Court of Justice.
Now a pro-Palestinian activist, George Bisharat has filled in details as to how this process will work. In Why Palestine should take Israel to court in the Hague he writes:
The Palestinians’ first attempt to join the I.C.C. was thwarted last April when the court’s chief prosecutor at the time, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, declined the request on the grounds that Palestine was not a state. That ambiguity has since diminished with the United Nations’ conferral of nonmember state status on Palestine in November. Israel’s frantic opposition to the elevation of Palestine’s status at the United Nations was motivated precisely by the fear that it would soon lead to I.C.C. jurisdiction over Palestinian claims of war crimes.
Israeli leaders are unnerved for good reason. The I.C.C. could prosecute major international crimes committed on Palestinian soil anytime after the court’s founding on July 1, 2002.
 Bisharat then cites Col. Daniel Reisner, the one time head of the IDF's legal department:
The former head of the Israeli military’s international law division, Daniel Reisner, asserted in 2009: “International law progresses through violations. We invented the targeted assassination thesis and we had to push it. At first there were protrusions that made it hard to insert easily into the legal molds. Eight years later it is in the center of the bounds of legitimacy.”
From the complete context, it's pretty clear that Reisner didn't mean violations as much as ill defined areas of the law. (Bisharat's implication is clear: the United States should be subject to ICC prosecution for targeted killings in Pakistan and Yemen.)

Bisharat makes a dubious claim here:
And it has treated civilian employees of Hamas — including police officers, judges, clerks, journalists and others — as combatants because they allegedly support a “terrorist infrastructure.” Never mind that contemporary international law deems civilians “combatants” only when they actually take up arms.
Elder of Ziyon has addressed the issue of the police officers in some detail.
This is a critical paragraph, and it highlights Goldstone's credulity. There is a clear statement from the police spokesman saying that the police were instructed to face the enemy, which is not a very ambiguous statement. Months later, when he is reached by commission members to explain this problematic statement, he seizes the opportunity to "clarify" that he only meant that they should be doing normal police duties.
And Goldstone believes him.
Not only that, his "proof" is an absurd statement that no policemen were killed in combat (presumably during the ground invasion.) This is a lie. According to PCHR and my research, 16 policemen were killed from January 4th and on, 34 policemen were killed, and my research indicates that at least 16 of them were members of terror organizations.
What international law "deems" can be fluid.

Even the concept of "occupation," on which Bisharat rests much of his case isn't as clear cut as he presumes. Eugene Kontorovich wrote recently:
I recently came across a discussion in the U.N.’s International Law Commission from 1950, as part of the drafting of the Draft Declaration on Rights and Duties of States. There were quibbles from countries such as France about whether annexation is always banned, or whether there might be various exceptions.
In response, the Secretary observed: “It might be suggested that in order to constitute a crime under international law an annexation must be carried out through the use of armed force, with a view to destroying the territorial integrity of another State.” [See I Yearbook of Int. Law Comm. 137 (1950).]
Indeed, it was not surprising that there was some confusion and concern about the extent of an annexation norm, since as the delegates admitted, there were some “frontier adjustments” made by the Allies after WWII.
The larger problem is that the New York Times continues to promote the Palestinian effort to avoid negotiations and have a settlement imposed on Israel internationally, with no editorial objections.

2) Iran and Hagel

At the end of a long analysis of the behavior of the Iranian regime, Michael Rubin writes in Deciphering Iranian decision making and strategy today:
Wars in the Middle East are caused not by oil or water but by overconfidence. In 1988, an Iranian mine damaged a US guided missile cruiser. In retaliation, President Ronald Reagan ordered Operation Praying Mantis to destroy Iranian oil terminals. The US Navy decimated its Iranian challengers in the ensuing battle, the largest US naval surface engagement since World War II. The red line Reagan established created a tacit understanding that governed US-Iranian relations for another 15 years. As the Iranian leadership has concluded that it could—literally—get away with murder in Iraq and Afghanistan, that American red lines were ephemeral, and that the United States was not prepared to stop its nuclear program, Tehran has grown bolder. Iranian diplomats might talk, but the powers that be will not abide by any deal. The IRGC and its proxies will continue to test American red lines until the United States forcibly pushes back.
This is not calling for America declaring war on Iran, though, I suppose, some would consider it such. But if red lines are necessary for limiting the spread of Iranian influence, what does it mean that President Obama has nominated Sen. Chuck Hagel to be Secretary of Defense?

They would travel to Iraq together, where Hagel was dismissiveand suspicious of the military’s top brass. Obama would take office and do the same. Hagel would speak out against tough Iran sanctions, and Obama would work against them from the White House, opposing several iterations of them and finally watering them down when he couldn’t prevent sanctions from passing Congress. Hagel would loudly criticize even the contemplation of military action against Iran, and Obama would have his secretary of defense deliver a similar message to Israel. It is this pattern that has led Hagel’s critics to express concern about his nomination to be secretary of defense. Many worry Obama shares Hagel’s views; Obama’s defenders assure us he does not. 
Mandel quotes a recent op-ed by Bob Woodward answering the question in the affirmative.

The AP reports:
Iran's elite Quds Force and Hezbollah militants are learning from a series of botched terror attacks over the past two years and pose a growing threat to the U.S. and other Western targets as well as Israel, a prominent counterterrorism expert says.Operating both independently and together, the militant groups are escalating their activities around the world, fueling worries in the U.S. that they increasingly have the ability and the willingness to attack the U.S., according to a report by Matthew Levitt of the Washington Institute for Near East Studies. His report points to two attacks last year -- one successful and one foiled by U.S. authorities -- as indications that the militants are adapting and are determined to take revenge on the West for efforts to disrupt Tehran's nuclear program and other perceived offenses.The report's conclusions expand on comments late last year from U.S. terrorism officials who told Congress that the Quds Force and Hezbollah, which often coordinate efforts, have become "a significant source of concern" for the U.S. The Quds Force is an elite wing of Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard, the defenders of Iran's ruling clerics and their hold on power.
At a time where it appears that Iran will be more aggressive, President Obama has nominated someone who will be hesitant to fight back or establish red lines.

Watcher's Council Nominations - Pre Amnesty Edition

Yes, this time the Democrats will actually go along with real border enforcement. This time, they're going to insist that after this one more last amnesty,really the last, no mas...we enforce the laws. From now on. Cross their hearts. Pinkie promise.

Trust them, they really are concerned about the good of the country, not merely importing a bunch of low information voters with limited English who can be controlled through a few select media channels and politicians to vote Democrat along ethnic lines and bribed with social welfare goodies.They'd never ever do that again. Nuh uh.

This time, it's gonna work! Hold that football steady, Lucy!

Welcome to the Watcher's Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the 'sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday.

Council News:

 Before we get started, let me remind you that there's now a seat available on the Watcher's Council up for grabs.

We're currently looking at candidates, so if you're interested, think you qualify or want to find out more about what's involved in being part of the longest established blogging group of its kind, simply leave a comment with site URL and your e-mail address (which won't be published) on any article over at Joshuapundit.

These don't come up all that often and when they do they usually fill up quickly, so don't snooze.

This week, Crazy Bald Guy, The Pirate's Cove, Maggie's Notebook, Ask Marion and Right Reason took advantage of my generous offer of link whorage and earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

Simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address ( which won't be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category, and return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week.

It's a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members. while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let's see what we have this week....

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don't forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..'cause we're cool like that!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

If You Ever Thought Chuck Hagel Was Clueless As Well As Anti-Israel, Here's Proof

The above is a video of a speech Senator Hagel gave to the anti-Zionist group J-Street in 2009 at their first national convention.

Amazingly, J-Street is attempting to defy the Senate Armed Services Committee by refusing to provide the tape, in which Senator Hagel improvised quite a bit. His remarks are very different on tape  than the prepared text, courtesy of the Atlantic Council where Hagel serves on the board with his good friend Chas Freeman.

After watching this, I'd love to ask Senator Hagel a few questions, among the many I could pose while tearing this nonsense to shreds:

1) You refer to the Arabs whom identify themselves as Palestinians as a 'house divided' and make an appeal for the facilitate Palestinian obvious call for Hamas and Fatah to become one entity. What exactly would the U.S. gain by empowering a genocidal group into the mix our government rightly labels a terrorist organization like Hamas that's sworn to Israel's destruction? What would Israel gain by negotiating with them, and how could Israel trust any agreement that was made?

2)You laud the Arab Peace initiative and call it an important step. That initiative calls for Israel to retreat back to the pre '67 borders, uproot half a million of its citizens, and redivide Jerusalem( including the holiest sites of the Jewish religion) in exchange for, essentially,  words on a piece of paper. You also mention that the terms 'could be negotiated'.

The Saudis and the Arab League who issued the initiative made it plain that this is an ultimatum and non-negotiable. So has Mahmod Abbas, numerous times. We needn't even mention Hamas, who have said that they will never recognize Israel.What exactly  is 'up for negotiation'?

3) Have you ever read the Qu'ran, Senator? Or the Hadiths? Are you aware of what those scriptures say about Jews, sir? About any agreements made with non-Muslims? By their own admission, the Arabs who identify themselves as  Palestinians have freely admitted that in their eyes, both Oslo and the Road Map, treaties the Israelis signed in good faith with them are null and void since they now have no further intention of abiding by them, if they ever did. And in Egypt, while the Camp David Accords are holding (barely) the Islamist dominated parliament is wildly in favor a ditching that treaty, and the Egyptians sacked Israel's embassy in Cairo and actually had Israeli diplomats virtually imprisoned until there was U.S. pressure to let them leave the country. What value, really, would any more of these treaties be in terms of keeping the peace if they can be violated at will?

4) When has 'land for peace' worked for Israel in the past? Or security agreements, for that matter? The ones agreed to by the U.S., the EU , Egypt and the Palestinians as part of the Israeli disengagement from Gaza were supposed to be ironclad,assured Israeli PM Sharon that Gaza would no longer be a source of terrorist attacks and congratulated him on his bold steps for peace. How'd that end up working out? Back when the Arabs held the Golan Heights, all of Judea and Samaria and half of Jerusalem, was there peace? Was Israel less secure or more secure than it is now?

5) In your public remarks and per your voting record, Senator, you're very much opposed to the U.S. labeling Hamas and Hezbollah terrorist groups even though both are openly genocidal towards Jews and both have the blood of American citizens on their hands, especially Hezbollah. And you also have been an outspoken proponent of Israel negotiating a 'land for peace' treaty with Syria's Basher Assad. Why would you expect these notoriously bad actors to want to make peace with Israel on any terms that meant anything, and why would anyone reasonable expect them to keep it?

6) You're notorious for being a proponent of severely paring down America's military and being against any further U.S. military intervention in the Middle East.Given that, what would any security agreements you talk about giving Israel be worth if the Arabs attack Israel's pre '67 indefensible borders once they had the strategic areas of the Golan Heights and the high ground in Judea and Samaria under their control? How exactly are you going to get NATO to except Israel as a partner when European nations like the UK observe a de facto arms boycott against Israel and NATO member Islamist Turkey would never accept them?

7) You frequently employ the old strategy of linkage when it comes to the Israel/Palestinian issue.

Let's play that game and assume that tomorrow, Israel agreed to withdraw completely to the pre-'67 borders and give you everything you want. Is Iran going to cease its quest for nuclear weapons? Are Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and others going to give up their missile arsenals and cease trying to destroy Israel? Is Islamist Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi going to suddenly develop new affection for the people he referred to in Q'urannic terms as the descendents of apes and pigs and decide that he doesn't need those F-16s and Abrams tanks you want to send him? What changes would occur, aside from a severely weakened Israel with indefensible borders?

8) In your speech, you mouth a lot of platitudes about freedom and the dignity of man. Why are you and the Obama Administration so critical of the side that actually practices it and so supportive and unwilling to criticize in any way the side that doesn't? Nations don't just have interests, they have principles. Or is that not something you agree with?

9) Why exactly are you asking Israel to do something and abide by rules you would not ask any of our other allies to do?

There's a lot more, but just running these down gives you a good idea of Hagel's views and character.

I'm hoping good sense prevails, but I unfortunately expect him to be confirmed.

Kerry Confirmed as Secretary of State

President Obama's choice for Secretary of State John Kerry was confirmed today by the Senate.

Only three of them had the courage to vote against such an obviously poor choice, all Republicans - John Cornyn and Ted Cruz of Texas, and James Inhofe from Oklahoma.

Senator Bob Menendez, (D-NJ) is scheduled to succeed Kerry as head of the foreign relations committee, an appropriate choice since he appears to know a lot about foreign relation....even if the media isn't reporting it.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Sarah Palin's Latest Move

I note with interest the reaction from the usual sources  at the news that Governor Sarah Palin has declined to renew her contract with FOX.

The Left,of course, is claiming she was dumped, which is amusing since FOX themselves had no problem saying that they had offered Governor Palin a renewal of her contract. If you doubt she still means ratings, schedule an event for Sarah Palin to speak in the American heartland with 2 or 3 days notice and watch how the crowds show up.

So why would Governor Palin fail to renew a $1 million per year contract? In one word undoubtedly dear to Governor Palin's heart, freedom.

After three years at FOX, bestselling books and a lucrative career as a lecturer, she no longer needs to worry about money. Instead, as a source close to Palin told RealClearPolitics' Scott Conroy, “She remains focused on broadening her message of common-sense conservatism across the country and will be expanding her voice in the national discussion.”

Translation? First, she can now freelance on any network or station she wants. There will be no more need to get permission from FOX is she wants to appear before, say Mark Levin or Rush Limbaugh's huge audience, or one of the alphabet networks for that matter.

And even more to the point, if she decides to run for office again, the way's clear. Democrat Mark Begich's senate seat in Alaska comes up for reelection in the 2014 midterms and that may be what she's looking at for starters, with perhaps even an eye on 2016. Or we might even see her make a concerted effort to do what she could have done in 2010 but chose not to do out of loyalty to the Republican party..carry the GOP's conservative base with her and create an entirely new, populist party.

The one thing we can be sure of is that whatever she does will be dynamic, original and surprisingly successful, just as her 2010 revival of the Republican Party was.

We can also be sure that her detractors will continue to vilify her and underestimate her.

Governor Palin herself gives a few hints in an interview with Stephan Bannon, who raised his own funding to direct 'The Undefeated', a documentary about Governor Palin;s substantial accomplishments in office as Alaska's governor ( emphasis mine):

 What's next for you? 

Short term: I encourage others to step out in faith, jump out of the comfort zone, and broaden our reach as believers in American exceptionalism. That means broadening our audience. I’m taking my own advice here as I free up opportunities to share more broadly the message of the beauty of freedom and the imperative of defending our republic and restoring this most exceptional nation. We can't just preach to the choir; the message of liberty and true hope must be understood by a larger audience. 

Focus on the 2014 election is also imperative. It’s going to be like 2010, but this time around we need to shake up the GOP machine that tries to orchestrate away too much of the will of constitutional conservatives who don’t give a hoot how they do it in DC. DC is out of touch, obviously. Voices on the right like Mark Levin, Rush, and the writers here at Breitbart have come out strongly against the “go along to get along” politicians who wave the white flag before the battle even begins. We’re not going to be able to advance the cause of limited constitutional government unless we deal with these big government enablers on our side. And this all ties into the problem of crony capitalism and the permanent political class in the Beltway. We need to consistently take them on election after election – ever vigilant.

As far as long-term plans, the door is wide open. I know the country needs more truth-telling in the media, and I’m willing to do that. So, we shall see. And always in the center of it all I have an awesome, full, exciting, and large family living in a very unique part of America that keeps me hopping! I love it!

Where do you think the country stands at the beginning of the President's 2nd term?

Before the November election I wrote that we all know what Obama’s second term will look like because we’ve seen his first. I said: “We know what we will get from a second Obama term. We will get the same failed policies. We will get Obamacare locked into law. We will get a debt crisis. We will get more inflation and higher gas prices. We will get tax increases. We will get fewer jobs. We will get more small businesses collapsing under the weight of higher taxes and unfair regulation. We will get more corruption and crony capitalism favoring the Obama administration’s friends. We will get less domestic energy development and increased dependence on terrorist sponsoring foreign regimes for our energy needs. We will get a 'blame America first' foreign policy that bows to our enemies and snubs our friends like Israel and leaves America and the world less safe. We will get less opportunity and security for ourselves and for our children.”

Predicting the future has never been easier because here we are! Already we see higher taxes, a stagnant economy, the same inflationary monetary policies, Obamacare looming like a dark cloud over small businesses, yet another demand for “debt ceiling” increases, continued stonewalling about the tragic Benghazi attacks, a Secretary of Defense nominee who has a history of being antagonistic to our ally Israel, and the attack on our Second Amendment rights by an administration that has no respect for the Constitution or the separation of powers. 

The problem is that some on the Right are now skittish because of the lost 2012 election. They shouldn’t be. Conservatism didn’t lose. A moderate Republican candidate lost after he was perceived to alienate working class Reagan Democrat and Independent voters who didn’t turn out for him as much as they did for the McCain/Palin ticket in 2008. Granted, those same voters also didn’t turn out for Obama as strongly either. We had an election defined by a biased media plus millions of voters who sat it out in disgust. As long as we allow the media and GOP establishment to tell us who our nominees must be, we can expect to lose. I’m not interested in losing. America’s next generation can’t afford another loss.  

 The MSM have declared both you and the Tea Party dead and buried. Reaction?

I was raised to never retreat and to pick battles wisely, and all in due season. When it comes to defending our republic, we haven’t begun to fight! But we delight in those who underestimate us. 

We definitely haven't heard the last of Sarah Palin. Just watch.

Hypocrisy Cubed - Sen. Dianne Feinstein Calls NRA 'Venal'


Here's Senator Feinstein on CNN Sunday:

"The NRA is venal. They come after you, they put together large amounts of money to defeat you," she said on CNN's "State of the Union." "They did this in '93, and they intend to continue it."

But what about another extremely venal group, a billion dollar plus organization that does exactly the same thing called Planned Parenthood?

Just last year, Planned Parenthood proudly terminated the lives of 333,964 every 94 seconds. The overwhelming majority resulted from consensual sex.

A significant number of those abortions are late term, where an infant with a full nervous system fully capable of feeling pain has the warmth and comfort of the womb abruptly violated when the child is killed by having surgical scissors driven into his or her skull and then having the brains sucked out to collapse the head so the unwanted child can be removed.

Yet Senator Feinstein, like the president, would never refer to Planned Parenthood in the sort of terms they use towards gun owners or the NRA - because a big chunk of the $542.4 million in taxpayer dollars Planned Parenthood reports it received last year went right back into the campaign coffers of Democrats who favor abortion-on-demand, including the late term process I describe above. Like Senator Feinstein..who has undoubtedly received a nice chunk of change from groups like Planned Parenthood and NARAL yet has the nerve to call someone else 'venal'!

At least the NRA, whatever else you think of it, raises its own money.

Needless to say, none of the talking heads at CNN or anywhere else would dream of mentioning this.

Since Roe V Wade, which somehow found a constitutional right to a taxpayer funded abortion 40 years ago, there are over 60,000,000 Americans who never lived to be able to pay the taxes to help fund the sort of cradle to grave ever expanding social welfare programs progressives like Senator Feinstein and President Obama want to foist on the country.

Ultimately, that means these programs will eventually go bankrupt, as the European social democracies are finding out. In this country, both MediCare and Social Security are already facing bankruptcy in the near future  without serious reforms or unsustainable levels of taxation.

 As someone who's not particularly an abortion hard liner (except when it comes to the process described above when the mother's life isn't in danger)  but who merely wants to government out of the business, I find this kind of political profit on the blood and souls of the unborn to be uniquely evil. But the grimmest joke of it all is ultimately on the 'progressives' who profit by supporting it.

More Info On Fordow Nuke Facility Explosion - And Of A Possible Hezbollah Attack On Israel

As I reported yesterday, there definitely was an explosion at Iran's top secret nuclear enrichment plan at Fordow...and the jokes certain members of Israel's security apparatus were cracking after Avi Dichter's deadpan press remarks were apparently not without reason.

Iranian defector and ex-Revolutionary Guards commander Reza Khalili went into more detail in an interview with the Jerusalem Post, calling it the biggest act of sabotage in decades:

Speaking to the Post on Monday, Khalili expressed confidence that the alleged blast will receive "further coverage in the US," and that "more information" will become available to verify the incident.
"This is the center of the Iranian nuclear program. It's essential for the regime, its activities, and its nuclear program. If such a blow was given to Fordow, it definitely harms [Iran] drastically. They were reaching for 20 percent uranium enrichment, and were increasing output," he added.

Situated near the holy Shi'ite city of Qom, the existence of the Fordow enrichment plant, dug deep into a mountain, was kept secret by Iran, until it was discovered by Western intelligence in 2009, and the question of how long it had been in operation remains unanswered.

Kahlili, a pseudonym used to protect him from the Iranian regime, published A Time To Betray in 2010, in which he described a journey which took him from the Islamic Revolutionary Guards to being a CIA operative in the 1980s. He now resides in California, and says he is in touch with a number of insiders in the Iranian intelligence and security communities, as well as with the office of Iran's supreme leader.

Asked why satellite imagery was not being released of rescue efforts at Fordow, Kahlili said only state intelligence agencies have access to live satellite feeds. "Why don't they put it out? My only assumption is that no one wants to take credit because of what the consequences could be by the regime," he said. "This is a very sensitive time. I'm sure that soon, very soon, more information will leak out. Chatter will get loud enough to provide further information." Kahlili went on to say that the "first suspicion is Israel" within the Islamic Republic. "I have verified information that there was a meeting [called by Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali] Khamenei. A decision was made to act in Lebanon. A request was made to [Hezbollah chief Hassan] Nasrallah to vacate southern Lebanese villages. Islamic Republic Guards are on their way there. A decision has been made to prepare for missile launch from a certain area in Lebanon against Israel," he said.

Khalili said one of the sources who initially leaked information of the blast came from within the security forces guarding Fordow, adding that precise information of the attack was not being released in order to protect the source. "The source has been collaborating for a long time," he said. A second source came from the Iranian Intelligence Ministry, he said, adding that it was very difficult to safely get information out of Iran.

Iranian authorities have not yet made any progress in their attempt to enter Fordow, Kahlili asserted, adding, "I fear there is radiation involved." Iran's defense ministry dispatched drilling vehicles, "the same they used to carve tunnels and create underground facilities, to see if they can make any headway in opening emergency exists, because they collapsed. Among those stuck in the facility are dozens of foreign nationals. These are contracted scientists," he said.

Kahlili said a second mysterious blast occurred in Tehran last week, at an IRGC base called "21 Hamza." "There are injuries, and there have been arrests of IRGC members who are being questioned. The Intelligence Ministry suspects sabotage," he added.

Even more to the point, without admitting any Israeli participation, Israeli intel sources have confirmed that the blast at Fordow occurred according to the London Times:

“We are still in the preliminary stages of understanding what happened and how significant it is,” one Israeli official told the London Times. He did not know if the explosion was “sabotage or accident” and refused to comment on reports that Israeli aircraft were seen near Fordo at the time of the blast.

The Iranians actually went to the trouble of issuing a formal denial, which doesn't explain the cordon around Fordos, the shaking of buildings as far away as three miles or the road closures between Qom and Tehran, which I was able to confirm independently.

And there appears to be a connection between the Fordow blast, Hezbollah and a possible strike against Israel.

Kahlili's interview with the Jerusalem Post (fourth paragraph) mentions that the Iranian regime blames Israel for the Fordow blast and has made a decision to order its proxy Hezbollah to launch a missile strike against Israel.

More confirmation of Kahlili's information in this regard is the redeploying of two Iron Dome anti-missile batteries by the Israelis on the Israel/Lebanon border.

Hezbollah has constructed camps near sites in Syria known to contain chemical weapons, obviously with an eye towards adding them to its arsenal as the Assad regime totters. Both the Obama Administration and Israel have stated that Hezbollah obtaining these WMD's would be a red line.

At the same time, Iran recently sent large amounts of troops and armor into Syria, publicly stating that an attack on its ally Assad was an attack on Iran.

It's quite possible that if Iran plans to strike at Israel, part of the conditions of increased Iranian help for Assad would be the release to Hezbollah of some of his WMD arsenal.

Is Hezbollah's Sheik Nasrallah really prepared to start another war with Israel? A missile strike, whether it involved WMDs or not would do that, and as I reported here before, this time, since Hezbollah essentially controls Lebanon's government, Israel would treat it as a war between Israel and Lebanon, not just Israel and Hezbollah.

It's hard to say. Hezbollah has still not totally recovered from the 2006 War with Israel, especially in terms of its political capital within Lebanon. And it is still pre-occupied with events in Syria, where its fighters are still engaged in combat with the Sunni insurgents. A war with Israel might be ill-advised, especially with Hamas still licking its wounds over the damage to its missile arsenal during Defensive Cloud last year.

But if Hezbollah's Iranian masters are playing the hand organ, the monkey's probably going to dance.

Stay tuned...

Forum: Can the Republican Party come back, or will a new party emerge?

Every week on Monday morning , the Council and invited guests weigh in at the Watcher's Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day. This week's question:Can the Republican Party come back, or will a new party emerge?

The Glittering Eye:Of course the Republican Party can come back. Right now its major problems are three:

1. Internecine warfare, which Michael Gerson has characterized as a battle between
reformers and rejectionists.

2. An inability to get their voters to turn out.

3. Alienation of the fastest-growing voting bloc (Hispanics).

None of these are necessarily permanent problems although if the Republican leadership wants to,it can make them permanent.

If it doesn't come back, we'll effectively have a one party system. Present structures ensure that no third party will emerge to challenge the Democrats and Republicans.

 The Noisy Room:As the Republican Party is currently constituted, no. But to reconstitute itself, it needs new faces, new leadership, new resolve, a fresh review of principle and a better understanding of both its enemies and its friends. It's possible for a new party to emerge from within the Republican Party, taking over the Republican Party and there are possible advantages to this in that there is much infrastructure that will not need to be recreated, but absent the first option and lacking any uprising from within, then a third party becomes not only possible, but necessary. The Republicans should go the way of the Whigs if they don't recommit to true constitutional principles and actions.

 JoshuaPundit: Ah, the Republicans...there's a theme song for their current situation.

 It's worth comparing 2012 with 2010 to answer this question.

2010 was an election when the GOP base turned out,sparked by Sarah Palin and Jim DeMint's energy and fought by the GOP establishment every step of the way. In fact, if it hadn't been for the buffoonish antics of RNC head Michael Steele spending scads of money on his personal lifestyle and on hopeless RINOs like Carly Fiorina  while ignoring  candidates like Dino Rossi,  Sharon Angle and Ken Buck who actually could have won with more funding and decent help on their ground game, the Republicans might have actually taken the Senate. There was widespread and open criticism of President Obama and his policies, and the midterm was largely a referendum on both.

2012, was the exact opposite. Mitt Romney was a good and decent man who would likely have made a good president, but he never resonated with the American people and allowed the Obama campaign to hide its own failures by demonizing him. He hid from the GOP's conservative base like the plague, refused to attack the president in terms that meant much, made a number of unfortunate unforced errors and depended on the economy to carry him over the finish line. A key tip off was when  Sarah Palin, one of the most effective communicators of conservatism in the party  were denied a  speaking slot at the GOP convention. Aside from a few great moments like the first debate, he never excited the base, because he really didn't speak their language. The debacle of the third debate and Chris Christie's photo-op with the president finished Mitt Romney off.So three million Republicans stayed home and President Obama won re-election with an historically low turnout.

And by the way, I don't think the demographics argument holds as much water as the pundits would have it. Simply put, conservative ideas articulated well win, because it's how life works. if the Republicans insist on being Democrat-lite, people will always vote for the real thing. Why not?

President Obama's policies are economically unstable, and his foreign policy is a disaster waiting to happen. These things are going to become evident before 2016.and perhaps even before the 2014 midterms, and  history abhors a vacuum. Most of the rising stars of the GOP got in with the 2010 surge, and even latecomers like Senator Ted Cruz identify more with the Tea Party wing of the party than the GOP establishment. The real question  is whether the establishment is going to end its war on anyone identified with the Tea Party or conservatism. I don't see that happening myself, although it's possible.

By 2016, we will have had almost a quarter century of failed and flawed leadership, and I think it will be evident to the American people. If the GOP establishment doesn't get hot or go home,  I fully expect either a takeover of the GOP or a new party to emerge. If it's the latter, it may lose in 2016 as Reagan did in 1976, but it will triumph in 2020 and usher in a new era of our American story .

 The Independent Sentinel: A new party would take a decade or more to become viable - we don't have a decade. I hope we don't go that route though it could happen. There is a hole waiting to be filled.

We need to make the Republican Party a better party.

At the moment, we do not have substantive leadership. We have a good defensive lineup but no offense.

All my faith is in Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Condi Rice and a few others.

The Republican Party is a party in need of aggressive leadership. Only a very strong leadership could make their voices heard over the biased media.

0Rhymes With Right: I remember this question -- some 40 years ago in the wake of Watergate. Can the GOP come back? Can it survive? And within a decade the GOP did come back under Ronald Reagan, sweeping the nation in an entirely new direction bringing a nation back to greatness following the collapse of the Johnson Administration, the scandals of the Nixon years, the Ford interregnum and the Carter malaise. Nobody could have expected such a comeback except for the visionaries who engineered it and the cast of supporting actors who caught the vision put forth by Ronald Reagan and completely swept aside the previous balance of power in our body politic.

I believe that something similar will happen in the wake of the Obama wave -- a tsunami that is likely to do to our system of government what was done to Japan's coastline following not long ago.

The thing it, it will be a different party than we see today, just as that new party birthed in 1980 was different from what was seen before. And it is hard to envision what it will look like.

If I had to make a guess, I would say it will still be a conservative party. That said, I envision it being a more libertarian conservative party than it has been, with the social conservatives having to accept that they are the junior partners in the coalition. As such, the GOP will still support low taxes and smaller government -- but it will not focus on social issues nearly so much. It will, as Ted Cruz has recently been emphasizing, need to present to Americans -- all Americans, including racial minorities and immigrants -- a vision of America as an opportunity society where everyone can prosper if government just gets out of the way. It will have to present itself as the party of rights for all -- with the first right being the right to be left alone by government. And we must get that message to the younger generation, a generation that has been hoodwinked by the false hopes and harmful changes sold to them by the current incumbent and his acolytes.

Let me note one more thing -- it will be a party in which many of our newest and brightest stars will be racial and ethnic minorities. It is no accident that the only Hispanic and Asian governors today are Republicans and that in recent years the only black members of Congress elected from predominantly white districts are Republicans as well. We can and do (and in the future must) groom men and women of quality -- regardless of race -- who attract support across racial and ethnic lines, as opposed to the Democrat model of creating congressional bantustans from which come the most radical and hateful voices of racial and class division.

Who will be the voices of this renewed GOP? I would suggest Ted Cruz as one, but he will not be alone. Bobby Jindal, Susana Martinez, Marco Rubio, Brian Sandoval and Tim Scott will be in the vanguard as well. From among that group of 6 I anticipate seeing at least two Presidents and one Vice President emerge, as well as one at least Supreme Court justice. I also suspect we will see others emerge as leaders -- all men and women who are today under the age of 50 (indeed, some of them at least a decade younger) who will be the leaders of the next generation.

Will this new party be able to change the direction of America and restore our country as America did? It must -- and that must be the task of every lover of our Republic.

 The Right Planet: Right now I believe it is crucial that the GOP leadership understand that Republicans, Conservatives and Tea Party Movement must present a united front, despite internecine struggles. We must work together. I think the introduction of a third party would prove disastrous and only guarantee a Democrat dictatorship for eons to come. It is what it is. The Republican establishment that insists on losing and fighting from losing positions must simply be swept aside. There is no more time to waste, if it isn't too late already.

Furthermore, I think it is paramount for the Republicans to find "common ground" with libertarians and like-minded individuals, with whom there is much in common. This is a collusion that is just starting to bud and I'm all for it. For example, don't drive the Ron Paul supporters away, bring 'em on board. At least offer the invite. The same strategy should be applied to other voting blocs (minorities and the like), as well--working at the grassroots level. The question should not be what divides us, but what unites us! And a lot of people can still get down with freedom and liberty.

 Bookworm Room: The Republican Party is desperately ill, and it refuses either to die or get better.  We all hoped in 2012 that opposition to Obama would revitalize the GOP, but it didn't.  Entrenched interests at the top simply wouldn't move or change. 

In theory, America is ripe for a third party -- and the Tea Party certainly has a good infrastructure in place.  To the extent, though, that the media quite successfully demonized Tea Partiers as racist, gun-crazed, abortionist-murder lunatics, I don't know that it can leverage itself into a true political party in time for the 2016 election.  Indeed, because the media seems to be more powerful than ever, despite its decision to abandon any pretense of objectivity, I honestly don't think any third party can succeed.  It will get the true believers, but it will not be able to make the leap to ordinary Americans, who will be conditioned to view it with deep suspicion.

In a funny way, I think Rand Paul (about whom I'm very lukewarm) is the best hope.  He's already positioned to take Libertarian and Tea Party votes, and he's been working hard to engage with ordinary conservatives, especially Jews and others who support Israel.  He's not waiting for a third party.  He's trying to be the third party.

 Well, there you have it.

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it.

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Soccer Dad's Mideast Media Roundup, 1/28/13

Today's sampler and analysis of Mideast media content from my pal Soccer Dad:

 Last week I cited Walter Russell Mead's critique of the MSM's coverage of last week's Israeli elections. In particular he cited David Remnick's coverage as "shameful." Mead has now apologized to Remnick, writing:

There is no point in recounting the twists and turns of the editorial process that led to a poorly expressed and unfair post appearing on the site. As the editor of the site and the Mead in Via Meadia, the responsibility for what happened is mine and mine alone. I want to apologize to David Remnick for a mean spirited jab that was unfair to him, to our readers and fell short of the standards of fairness, courtesy and accuracy we try to uphold on the site. This was not a borderline case; it was wrong and in failing to establish a process that would prevent this kind of error, I have made a grievous mistake. It’s particularly galling that this mistake was at the expense of a man whose brilliant editorial leadership at the New Yorker has set the standard for American journalism for many years.
I'm not sure what Mead was apologizing for. Mead's main point was that the MSM misunderstands Israel and sees the Palestinian Israeli conflict as central to defining Israel. This is central to Remnick's article. Nothing in his article discusses Abbas's statement implying that it would be better to die than to give up the right of return. Or Morsi's "apes and pigs" comment. In addition Remnick throws in a gratuitous reference to "fascism." Towards the end of the article, he quotes Mkhaimar Abusada, a political science professor from Al Azhar University in Gaza.
“We are going to witness more settlements, a greater encirclement of East Jerusalem, and more frustration and despair. Which means we’ll have one of two scenarios: either meaningless negotiations or, if the stalemate continues, a new round of violence. And, in the end, violence is not a possibility—it’s almost a certainty.”
It isn't clear that Abusada is affiliated with Hamas, but his past writings show that he is an apologist for the terror group. Specifically he writes that there can't be any peace until Hamas is taken into account. I don't think that the adjective "shameful" was inappropriate at all.

Jonathan Spyer shows a much better grasp of the recent election:
Bottom line: the underlying strength and maturity of Israel’s democracy was demonstrated this week. With a region in flames all around them, Israelis pulled off an election with a high turnout (66.6%), conducted efficiently and transparently, focusing on a substantive discussion of the key issues facing the country, but largely devoid of deep division and rancor. The results indicate that a large, sane, pragmatic center is the core presence in Israeli political life. It is to be hoped that the government that emerges from the coalition negotiations will reflect this reality.

2) When bigotry doesn't matter

A few weeks ago comments that President Morsi made in 2010 about Jews being descended from "apes and pigs" were reported by MEMRI. It was a cause of great outrage. An editorial in the New York Times fumed:
The White House called for Mr. Morsi to make clear that he respects members of all faiths and said the videotaped remarks run counter to the goal of peace. President Obama should also deliver that message to President Morsi directly. The State Department was indignant: State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland would not say if Washington is demanding that Morsi personally repudiate the remarks, but she made clear the U.S. needs to see more than the statement from his office to be convinced he no longer holds to the earlier views. 
 An attempt to explain himself to a group of visiting U.S. senators made matters worse.
Then Morsy crossed a line and made a comment that made the senators physically recoil in their chairs in shock, Coons said. "He was attempting to explain himself ... then he said, ‘Well, I think we all know that the media in the United States has made a big deal of this and we know the media of the United States is controlled by certain forces and they don't view me favorably,'" Coons said. The Cable asked Coons if Morsy specifically named the Jews as the forces that control the American media. Coons said all the senators believed the implication was obvious.
But one of those Senators, John McCain, though he was offended, still thinks that unconditional aid to Egypt is a good idea.
McCain said the delegation voiced its disapproval and had a “constructive discussion” with Morsi. “We leave it to the president to make any further comments on this matter that he may wish,” the Arizona Republican said. The delegation clearly sought to move beyond the unexpected diplomatic flap to focus on Egypt’s economy. McCain told reporters the congressional delegation will push for an additional $480 million in budget assistance to Egypt.
The comments have become an issue in Senator John Kerry's confirmation hearings. Barry Rubin quotes the exchange between Senator Rand Paul and the nominee and adds his own comments:
Rand Paul: “Do you think it’s wise to send [Egypt] F-16s and Abrams tanks?”
Kerry: “I think those [antisemitic] comments are reprehensible, and those comments set back the possibilities of working toward issues of mutual interest. They are degrading comments, unacceptable by anybody’s standard, and I think they have to appropriately be apologized for….””

Kerry, of course, isn’t answering the question. He is detaching the remarks from Muslim Brotherhood ideology and from U.S. policy. This is meaningless rhetoric on his part. It does, however, raise the intriguing problem of what Kerry would do since President Mursi isn’t going to apologize. That would have been a good question. Of course, he would do nothing.
Rand Paul [cutting Kerry off]: “If we keep sending them weapons, it’s not gonna change their behavior.”
Here is the essential question and the one that Kerry doesn’t want to answer. What reason is there to believe that the U.S. supply of arms would change the Brotherhood government’s policies? Rather than moderate its policy wouldn’t these arms merely enable the regime to follow a more radical position, and who would these arms be used against?
Kerry: “Let me finish. President Mursi has issued two statements to clarify those comments, and we had a group of senators who met with him just the other day who spent a good part of their conversation in a relatively heated discussion with him about it….”
Yes, Mursi issued two statements but they were not to take back his prior words but only to double down on them since he asserted that the statements had been taken out of context by the Zionist-controlled media. The man isn’t misspeaking. He’s just saying what he believes. Kerry and Obama refuse to recognize that he believes these things.
Whatever one thinks of Naftali Bennett, at most he will be a junior partner in the ruling coalition in Israel. Mohammed Morsi is the President of Egypt with deeply held beliefs that inform his views that are hostile to American interests. Yet, to the mainstream media, who presents a greater threat to peace in the Middle East?

Sunday, January 27, 2013

More on The Iranian Fordow Nuclear Explosion


Word is slowly leaking out about the Fordow explosion in Iran. It definitely appears that something occurred.

Die Welt (link in German only) is reporting that their sources say 190 people ( rather than 240 as originally reported) were trapped underground by what appears to be a major explosion, and that all roads were closed between Qom (Fordow is located outside Qom) and Tehran for at least a day after the explosion is reported to have occurred.The explosion itself shook buildings and broke windows within a 3 mile (5 kilometer) radius. Afterwards, the Iranians instituted a strict cordon of 15 miles (25 kilometers) around the area of the plant. I've been able to verify myself that the cordon actually occurred.

Die Welt's
sources say the explosion reportedly destroyed two elevators and buried the lower chambers in rubble, and rescue teams have been unable to penetrate thus far, almost a week after the explosion is said to have occurred.

Significantly, President Ahmadinejad held an emergency meeting the day after the incident occurred with Iranian security chiefs, the head of Iran's Energy Agency and other officials. I have a feeling they weren't talking about sports scores.

One interesting hint from one of my Little Birdies...apparently Israeli Home Front Minister and former Shin Bet director Avi Dichter was asked about this by a member of the Israeli press  and merely shrugged and said  "Any explosion in Iran that doesn’t hurt people but hurts its assets is welcome.”

The hint I was given is that according to my source, certain circles among  Israel's security personnel found his dead pan demeanor and his reply hysterically funny and the punchline for a number of inside jokes.

You can read into that whatever you wish to, but if this was sabotage, it was an incredible operation and a  major achievement.

Sen. Rand Paul Destroys Kerry During Testimony

There's not much chance Senator John Kerry will not be conformed by his pals in the senate as Secretary of State, but here we have a video of Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) literally taking this hypocrite apart.

You now at least have a decent look at the quality of one of President Obama's presumptive nominees and how his thought processes work.

How The UK Sunday Times Observed Holocaust Memorial Day...

Today, January 27th is Holocaust Memorial Day, when people throughout the world commemorate the six million  Jews who died at the hands of Hitler and his many willing assistants in all nations.

The  Times cartoon above,  showing a gargoyle like, hook nosed Benyamin Netanyahu 'cementing in a wall to peace' with the blood of those Arabs who identify as Palestinians is pretty much standard fare nowadays in the kind of country the UK has become. Or more accurately, as Caroline Glick recently pointed out, the kind of country Britain has been for some time but now feels increasingly comfortable with revealing openly.

While there are undoubtedly a number of sporadic commerativeceremonies in Britain today, the overwhelming thrust of the country's leadership and its policies are conveyed far more accurately by the cartoon above. And whether they want to admit it or not, that cartoon, and the fact that it was allowed to run today is not only overt anti-semitism, but craven cowardice. Can you imagine the Times ever running the Mohammed cartoons?

Just a day ago, Liberal MP David Ward compared Israel's policies with those of the Nazis at Auschwitz:

"Having visited Auschwitz twice - once with my family and once with local schools - I am saddened that the Jews, who suffered unbelievable levels of persecution during the Holocaust, could within a few years of liberation from the death camps be inflicting atrocities on Palestinians in the new State of Israel and continue to do so on a daily basis in the West Bank and Gaza."

While he was eventually forced to make a pro forma apology by party leaders, subsequent remarks by Ward signal that he hasn't changed his views one iota.

The sophistry that people like David Ward and many other Britons indulge in is pretty wide spread these days...that there's a difference between 'Jews' - especially Left wing Jews willing to play along with the anti-Zionist narrative - and 'Israel'.

As the above cartoon reveals, what they really object to is Jews having the nerve to actually have the right of self-determination and to insist on defending themselves, something they wouldn't dare criticize for any other group.

What they're ultimately comfortable with, whether they admit it or not, is the idea of Jews as victims,perpetually dependent on their tolerance and goodwill. The cartoon underlines that hideous  comfort in Jews as victims by  using the motif of a wall to slam Israel's security barrier, which has saved countless Israeli lives from Islamist  terrorism. Holocaust Remembrance Day, if nothing else, should be a reminder of how quickly the winds can change when it comes to the Jews, and it is a strong and powerful Israel that makes sure that passively going along with those odious breezes is not an option anymore.

The 'anti-Zionist' is almost inevitably an anti-semite, and usually you don't have to dig too deeply at all.

Since this cartoon appeared in Britain's largest newspaper,and judging by the comments a lot of people found it appropriate, it's worth taking a moment to  review a little history. Because Britain's own record on the Holocaust is frequently glossed over.

 The UK was directly complicit in the death toll of the Holocaust by defying international law and closing off Jewish immigration to Palestine on the eve of the Holocaust with the issuance of the White Paper in 1938, trapping millions of Jews in Europe without a place to flee to.Needless to say, few of them were welcome in Britain.

Britain even refused to negotiate with the Nazis to save one million Jews during the last part of WWII. In 1944, Himmler attempted to make a deal with the Allies to exchange one million Jews, including the still intact Jewish population of Hungary, about 500,000 people, for a few trucks, some soap and some coffee. The official name of the Nazi proposal was Blut fur wahren - literally, blood for goods. The Americans signaled that they might be willing to sign on to the deal but the British vetoed it, explicitly because they were more interested in placating the Arab interests in the Middle East  and did not want these Jews in Palestine.They even went to the extent of imprisoning Joel Brand, the Hungarian Jew and  member of the Hungarian Aid and Rescue Committee who was Himmler's envoy to the allies for months in Cairo, in order to effectively stonewall the proposed deal.

Brand later testified under oath in the Eichmann trial that he heard Lord Moyne, the British Minister Resident in the Middle East who was present when he was interrogated by British Intelligence say, "What can I do with these million Jews? Wherever would we put them?"

Hungary's Jews ended up in Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen instead of Israel,where most of them were murdered.And while Britain was doing its best to prevent Jews from coming in to Palestine, at the same time they were allowing unlimited Arab in-migration there.Anyone interested in the full sordid story should read Lucy Dawidowicz's ` The War Against the Jews : 1933-1945: and Joan Peter's prize winning From Time Immemorial: The Origins of the Arab-Jewish Conflict over Palestine.

Even after the war, the British did their very best to strangle the nascent Israel at birth. The British not only made a point of turning over as many strategic locations and arms caches within Palestine to the Arabs as they could manage, but were happy to arm and train the Arab armies that launched  a jihad  to massacre the Jews of Israel in 1948, a mere three years after Auschwitz was liberated. The most effective Arab fighting force in that war and the one that carried out the ethnic cleansing of the Old City of Jerusalem and the Jewish communities of Judea and Samaria was the Jordanian Arab legion, led by British officers under the notorious anti-semite Colonel John Glubb, AKA 'Glubb Pasha'.

This is the country whose  elites presume to sit in judgement over Israel's 'crimes'.

I'd say it was shameful, but how does one even convey the concept of shame to those whom have ceased to even understand what that word means?  To those incapable of feeling it?

UPDATE: The Times,of course has defended this cartoon.  “This is a typically robust cartoon by Gerald Scarfe,” said a spokesperson for The Sunday Times, adding, “The Sunday Times firmly believes that it is not anti-Semitic. It is aimed squarely at Mr Netanyahu and his policies, not at Israel, let alone at Jewish people.”

They also claim that the cartoon's appearance on Holocaust Memorial Day was 'just a coincidence' because of the recent Israeli elections. As if they have no control over what appears in their sordid  rag whatsoever.

QED on what I wrote above, exactly. 'It's not all Jews we hate..just the uppity ones with the nerve to stand up for themselves. You see that, don't you?"

One can almost hear their German counterparts of seventy years ago telling their Jewish compatriots that even they had to admit, Hitler made a lot of good points and besides, he wasn't really after them....just  the Jews in the East, the communists and the international bankers.Not the 'good Jews.'

 Drool, Britannia. When people who purport to be decent embrace indecency wholeheartedly, they deserve what happens to them.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Must See - Krauthammer At his Best

Here's a real treat.

The always thought provoking and stimulating pulitzer prize winning columnist and renowned commentator  Dr. Charles Krauthammer spoke yesterday at a symposium sponsored by the National Review in Washington DC entitled 'Challenges Facing Conservatives' and had a number of things to say well worth hearing. C-SPAN broadcast the event, and Dr. Krauthammer's segment is available at the above link.

He speaks for about an hour, and the segment, sparked by questions from moderator Rich Lowrey and a Q&A session with the audience is well worth your time. Among other things, he addresses exactly why Romney lost the election, why he feels optimistic about the future of conservatism in America and what he sees in the future.

Highly recommended if you have any interest in the above topics.

Good Riddance - Iowa Senator Tom Harkin To Retire


That well known war hero Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) has finally decided to call it a day.

 Aside from shamelessly lying about his non-existent combat record, Harkin has been a reliable Left leaning supporter of things like abortion-on-demand, same sex marriage, the president's green energy scams, and amnesty for illegal aliens. In fairness, he's also been one of the relatively sane Democrat voices when it comes to foreign policy.

Harkin's next election would have come up in the 2014 midterms, but the 73-year-old incumbent decided enough was enough, so he's announced his retirement.

Iowa went for President Obama in 2008, but the turnout among Republicans and independents was  fairly low, so it's pretty much anyone's ball game at this point.At present, th eDemocrats hold a slight majority in the Iowa State Senate, with the Republicans having a slight majority in the Iowa House.

On the Democrat side, Congressman Bruce Braley is expected to be the front runner, unless he decides to seek the governor's seat.If he goes after Harkin's seat, other challengers are likely to  surface.

The GOP has two probable candidates, congressmen Tom Latham and Steve King, both of whom fought off stiff challenges brought about by redistricting.Since Latham is more acceptable to the GOP establishment while King is a Tea Party favorite, there could be a stiff primary battle if both of them decide to run.

Friday, January 25, 2013

What Exactly To Do ABout Blatant Media Bias - A Battle Plan


Ace has a very apt  cri d'couer over at his place after witnessing how the Obama Media treated Hillary Clinton's abysmal performance yesterday..essentially covering for her and the Obama Administration in an example of what Ace calls, appropriately, 'the full and seamless fusion of media power with government power' :

The media used to hide it a bit, in their actions; they would temper their scorn of conservatism, throw them a bone now and again just to prove they were capable of such a thing.
No longer. The media no longer hides it in their actions. They are fully fused with the Obama Administration and DNC. The only way in which they do hide it is by simply lying when confronted about it: They'll issue a snide denial, then go about doing precisely what it is they were accused of doing.

This is dangerous and unhealthy. I keep banging this drum but honestly, some patriotic billionaires do have to band together to purchase or build a media outlet. The outlet would be founded upon a simple premise: that it is dangerous and ultimately fatal for democracy for media power to fuse with government power, that the adversarial press is vital.

Fox alone isn't enough. For one thing, any venture needs competition; Fox doesn't really have competition, not for the audience it's targeting.

For another thing, frankly, look: Fox is often pitched too low to do any good with any but the already-alarmed. (Which I consider to be possibly a function of a lack of competition.)
The media considers its adversarial function to consist of serving as adversaries to critics of Obama and the Democrats; thus Terry Moran shaming himself by rushing out to ask what right a Senator has to question the Secretary of State on matters of foreign policy.

They do not consider themselves required to exert any adversarial pressure on governmental power itself (at least not so long as it is held by socialist Democrats; why sure, they'll rough up John Boehner!).

This is dark, and dangerous, and will lead to horrors. It always has lead to horrors before.

Anyone who has actually followed the uncritical treatment President Obama has received from the majority of the media would have to agree, if they have even a semblance of objectivity and intellectual honesty.

As Ace puts it, merely pointing it out and talking to ourselves is inadequate. The Left is quite content to have us relegated to a ghetto of FOX, blogs and talk radio. We need a battle plan.

And happily, beyond the creation of another media outlet, (a good idea, but one that will take time) it's not beyond our powers.Here's how:

1) With the exception of NPR and Pacifica, Left wing outlets funded by your tax dollars, Television is a commercial enterprise. As such, it exists to make a profit. It's not enough merely not to watch yourself, but to send a message that bias affects the bottom line.

An organization and a website that actively monitors whom advertises on these biased news programs and provides contact information and drives a committed response for both the networks and affiliates, and even more importantly, the advertisers themselves is a must, and not just for the news sites but for the entire program line.

If Ford or McDonalds or Sears or Toyota gets a raft of continuous e-mails saying that you will no longer buy their products because of the content they're supporting, it resonates, especially if it's combined with a drop in viewership. And they will make their dissatisfaction known to the suits who control the networks.Writing to the networks themselves is a joke, because they largely share the political sympathies of their on-the-air talent but when the advertisers start whining, it gets heard.And acted on.Because the networks have stockholders who primarily care about their investment.

Some outlets, like MSNBC have made a conscious business decision to become Left wing minarets. Fine, but they also need to be made to understand there's a cost involved.So we target their advertisers to send that message.

As I can testify personally, this sort of thing works in most cases unless the advertiser themselves are ideologically driven.

There needs to be a commitment and activity among conservatives or simply those who care about liberty and a real free press to unite and make this happen. I'm more than willing to devote some time and effort...anyone else?

2)Activism begins at home. For instance, how many of you enjoy the products of a company called Ben and Jerry's , run by Leftist loons Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield? Where do you think their money goes? How many of you drink Peet's coffee, headquartered in Berkeley?

Imagine what would happen if Ben and Jerry's corporate owners, Dutch-Anglo Unilever received thousands of e-mails with the message that the sender was no longer buying Ben and Jerry's products because of their politics? Imagine what might occur if Vons, Ralph's or other supermarket chains got the same e-mails and saw a drop in sales because of it?

The Left already does this with groups like Buy Blue.We should too. But it takes organization.

3)Profiling works. It's important to out so-called conservative media when they also use the money they get from advertisers courting conservative listeners to support Left wing outlets.

Here's an example. In Los Angles, Clear Channel owns both KFI (Rush Limbaugh's outlet)and KTLK, which features the likes of Stephanie Miller and Ed Schultz. If you're an advertiser and you buy time from KFI, they also put your ads on KTLK to help support Schultz and Miller 'as an extra'. And whether or not you like the idea, your advertising dollars go to keep them alive.

This situation is not unique to Los Angeles, or to radio. If Clear Channel wants to fund Lefties, fine, but they should be made aware that there's a cost. Imagine what would happen if their advertisers got a string of e-mails protesting the fact that their ads were supporting Miller and Schultz and threatening not to patronize the goods and services they have on offer until it stopped? Would it stop? You betcha.

This works well in reverse too. Imagine what might occur if the advertisers of your typical Lefty newspaper like the Philly Enquirer were informed that until conservative voices appeared in these publications and their news content became more balanced, the goods and services on offer would not be patronized? Would the paper add conservative columnists and perhaps even stop merely redacting the crap they get from the AP? Some wouldn't. But some would.

4) Cut off access to the public trough. None of the above work on NPR or Pacifica, because unlike most media they survive, vampire-like, on our taxes.

Congress controls the nation's purse strings. And the Republicans have a majority in the House. Is there any reason it's still being funded, besides the fact that the GOP is too gutless to refuse to do it because we haven't made it an issue?

These are only a few basic steps that would make a major difference provided they were organized properly, received a commitment from enough dedicated people and were part of a sustained effort.

Well? Is your liberty worth a little time and effort?

It won't happen over night, but to paraphrase that old shrink's joke, look how long it took to get thing's screwed up.