Monday, October 31, 2005

Judge Alito...Scalia? Or Souter?



President Bush's announcement that Samuel Alito has been nominated to the Supreme Court, replacing Harriet Miers, will no doubt please many conservatives who have long championed his judicial philosophy and impeccable credentials.

Yet, conservative questioning of Bush's leadership which began with the nomination of Roberts and fulminated in the nomination of Miers demands we apply a rigorous standard to this new nominee to protect conservative core principles as we move forward.

Already, a disturbing symbolic image was created when the family of Judge Alito posed at the White House with the portrait of President Clinton prominently behind them.



The question may fairly be asked how anyone could knowingly pose in front of the portrait of a man who did so much to undermine the law and conservative values? In another highly charged symbolic move, Judge Alito and his family left the White House and proceeded directly to the U.S. Capitol where they paid respects to another Democrat/liberal icon, Rosa Parks, whose body lies in the Capitol Rotunda.

Waiting for Orders From Headquarters

As I implicitly trust David Frum, Bill Kristol and Anne Coulter, over the man for whom I have twice voted, I'll have to await their opinion before moving forward in supporting another questionable nomination by President Bush.

Miers Roped Out at WH?

David Frum, the former White House Speech Writer who was so instant in his opposition to Miers nomination and continues to call for her to be fired from her job as White House Counsel may have more influence than some people initially thought. Miers is shown here returning from Camp David, where she spent the weekend with President Bush preparing the nomination of Judge Alito. Her way back into the building is barred by a rope, which no one sought to remove.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

A Lesson for the Future: Closing Thoughts on Miers

The buzz is that a nominee to replace Harriet Miers to the United States Supreme Court will be announced very soon, most likely in the next 24 hours. Hopefully, it will be a nominee that all those who value freedom can unite behind and repair the damage caused by the unfortunate fight waged by Barabas conservatives, who continue to show their lack of graciousness in victory at defeating Miers.

But as we move on, and the adults in the party attempt to put the pieces back together again and refocus our energy on defeating Democrats and advancing our agenda, there are a few important lessons to be learned from the recent unpleasantness.

Consider the Source

I know the phrase "consider the source" is thinking 101 for anyone over the age of 12. However, it seems that many in the Miers opposition leapt to pre-conceived notions about her, sprouting from seeds sown by sources with an agenda of their own.

David Frum, the Canadian born White House speech writer, who penned such memorable lines as "axis of evil" and whose book "The Right Man" is an eloquent endorsement of President Bush's leadership came out swinging hard against Miers within an hour of President Bush's announcement of her nomination to the Supreme Court. It's pretty clear from all Frum wrote on the subject that he's had a voodoo doll of Miers sitting on his desk for a long time, just waiting to stick in the pins.

Why?

Speechwriters at the White House have to clear every word and phrase through a complex staffing mechanism. Miers was the controller of that staffing process as Staff Secretary. Later, as Deputy Chief of Staff Frum's work would have had to pass her approval before going forward. Frum left before Miers became White House Counsel, but I can tell you from my own experience in the Reagan White House, the Counsel's Office has always frustrated speech writers with their insistence on legalese wording rather than political rhetoric that is usually more clear and persuasive.

Frum no doubt influenced many at National Review, where his diary, or blog is published and at the Weekly Standard, published by fellow Miers opponent, Bill Kristol. Frum continues to fume that Miers should no longer be White House Counsel and should be shown the curb along with half the cabinet in a conservative version of Nixon's Saturday night massacre.

In Frum We Trust?

During this sad imbroglio we were told that it was not good enough to trust President Bush, who knew Miers well and had counted on her help in nominating and confirming a stellar batch of conservative justices to the federal bench. A seat on the Supreme Court was too important to leave it to trust. Yet, the same folks who insisted on that standard as one of their principles in opposing Miers seemed to implicitly trust Frum, Kristol and the other Miers opponents without any question as to their motives or background.

If it came to a choice, I would place my trust and loyalty in President Bush, the man I twice voted for, over Frum who I respect, but who may have other motives that I do not share. It's time to move forward and work on advancing the agenda that President Bush has laid out and Frum, Kristol et. al. have endorsed. But in the future, keep in mind that dissent is not always so firmly founded on principle as it may appear to be.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Note to Free Republic and Confirm Them Readers

I'm monitoring the "no" votes at the Mike's America poll regarding support for President Bush coming over from Confirm Them and this link from the comment streams at Free Republic. It's way past time that the adults here at Mike's America move on to working on other vital issues, but I realize that narrow sectarian extremists at these two sites also have a very strong vain and narcissistic streak that must be fed. So here it is:

To our ever so gracious in victory Barabas conservatives:

One Old Soldier's Wisdom on Miers

It will soon be time for the adults to get back to picking up the pieces left by the Barabas conservative fight that sunk the Miers nomination and threatens to undermine President Bush's leadership as we head into the all important 2006 election.

But as a doctor X-rays the leg before he sets the broken bone, it's important for conservatives to understand the problem generated by a vocal minority before we get around to repairing the damage.

Old Soldier, whose well reasoned comments on this issue have been more restrained than my own has this wrap up to offer. Words of wisdom:

Those of us who have served in the military learn the distinction between tactics and strategy. The conservative borking of Miers is a classic example of tactics, with a very narrow and short term strategy of seating a demonstrably conservative jurist (acceptable to a few) on the Supreme Court. If the true conservative strategy is to roll the Supreme Court over to originalists, the tactic of OPPOSING Miers may have cost us the overall war.

I was not particularly pleased that Ms. Miers did not have that desired history of originalism, but President Bush did have a history if nominating demonstrably conservative jurists to appellate court positions. We will never know what Miers could have been; one other commenter suggested she may have been a steel magnolia. I chose not to prejudicially condemn her. Yes, I read the reports of the poor speech, she once contributed to the Democrats, she once spoke in favor of quotas, she didn't respond well to the Senates obtuse questions, etc. None of it did I find demonstrably indicative of what she would be on the bench. Obviously, I didn't have access to the crystal ball used by the boisterous conservative minority.

As I indicated earlier, I have no problem with disagreement. It is opposition that I do not condone; especially when the opposers do NOT have the endorsement of or a commission from the majority they supposedly represent. You spoke for me without consulting me! Worse yet, you spoke for me in spite of what the numbers were telling you. I take exception with that. That is the way the liberals work, not the conservatives that I have been supporting. And in so doing the minority have compromised some of our own fundamental principles. That speaks well for our integrity, doesn't it?

As a party the GOP must have conservatives and centrists. If we as conservatives start excluding the centrists, they are going to migrate back to the left side of the spectrum, should the Democrats actually start standing for something. The MSM is having a field day with this radical right controlling the GOP claptrap. Perhaps we will get that demonstrably conservative originalist jurist as the next nominee, but at what consequence?

Are you so sure the gang of fourteen will not permit a filibuster? If another Supreme Court position opens up, do you think the liberals won't die fighting a confirmation? You may have assured a fourth originalist is confirmed and a fifth is filibustered. I just think the potential consequence is far more impacting than considered. Time will tell.


Old Soldier expands on this theme in a further comment, where he accurately tags the conservative minority who opposed Miers as "the few."

The Few

My feathers are ruffled because a few have decided to act on my behalf without my endorsement. I consider that a hijacking of sorts. I acknowledge their right to speak out, to redress their grievances, etc. I acknowledge their belief in firmly standing upon a principle. I will not belittle that right or freedom, because I have personally stood in the gap for 31 years wearing our nation's U.S. Army uniform.

What I want now is an acknowledgement from those that have presumed to speak for me that they accept full responsibility for the forthcoming consequences. There have been many times that good people have gone down standing upon a principle. When standing upon a principle becomes defensive in nature, it extremely limits the maneuver room necessary to influence the outcome of the situation.

I also want the few to recognize that the consequences may be far more reaching than merely getting a demonstrably originalist jurist as the next nominee. There could be dire consequences should another Supreme Court position open up; our chances to effect a majority of originalists on the bench may be severely compromised. If that becomes the result of this tactical victory we've made a strategic blunder.

I (and I believe Mike, too) have been trying to get the idea across that this conservative movement is a team effort that requires a majority. That majority includes a lot of voters who are non-party aligned centrists. They vote for the people that they feel will best lead the country at the time. We need them to vote conservative in order to remain in the majority. This debacle of causing Ms Miers to withdraw can easily be viewed for what it is an extreme left tactic. If the perception is there is no distinction between the left and right conservativism may suffer.

Finally, I would like the few to acknowledge the notion that the GOP senate will unequivocally fight and succeed in confirming a demonstrably conservative originalist jurist is extremely simplistic. Triple the noise generated to effect Miers withdrawal may not be sufficient to cause the gang of fourteen to deny a filibuster. Threatening GOP senators up for reelection in 06 is absolutely counterproductive toward keeping the momentum of the conservative movement it is merely one more tantrum to accompany the one just past.

I have read your defense of what you've done and I've raised my concerns. You have usurped my position without my concurrence. Now it is time for you to take responsibility for your actions. All your comments are purely an attempt to justify what you have done. I don't want justification I want responsibility.

Old Soldier

Update On The Bush Poll:

Results of the Bush poll parallel those in the poll for Miers. While 70% of respondents show support for President Bush as they did for Miers, many of the Barabas conservatives have married up with the "hate everything Bush does" left in expressing opposition to President Bush's leadership as he moves what is mostly a conservative agenda forward.

I am dismayed to see that many of "the few" cannot even express overall support for President Bush. This says quite a bit about how much we can count on them to help win elections and advance an agenda.

The history of the 1992 presidential election provides a perfect example of how dangerous an unyielding stand on narrow sectarian principle can be. Pat Buchanan and his followers mostly sat on their hands that year and partially as a result, we were cursed with eight years of Bill Clinton.

Friday, October 28, 2005

No Joy in "The Base" After Miers Withdrawal

There has been increasing noise from the Barabas wing of the Republican Party in the wake of Miers withdrawal falsely claiming that her nomination was opposed by a majority of conservatives. The only measure we have for the veracity of such statements are polls which show that Miers retained positive support for her nomination among Republicans. The Rasmussen Report released on October 21 continued to show support for Miers among the GOP :
Forty-eight percent (48%) of Republicans say the President's nominee should be confirmed. That's down from 54% a week ago. Twenty percent (20%) of the GOP faithful oppose the nomination, up from 17% a week ago. Republicans supported the nomination of Chief Justice John Roberts by a 64% to 11% margin.

From CNN/USAToday/Gallup:

Initial Reaction to Miers' Withdrawal
PleasedDisappointed
TOTAL SAMPLE42%35%
Conservatives3444
Moderates4533
Liberals5525
Independents3933
Republicans3153
Democrats5525

A comparison of past nominations shows Miers as more qualificatied, as viewed by the general public, than Clarence Thomas, to whom her nomination was frequently compared:

Source: The Wall Street Journal, for larger, less fuzzy image click here.

At Mike's America, the sample of readers polled showed over 70% supporting Miers nomination, and that number would be closer to 90% if tie dyed hippie freak tree worshipping neo-socialist moonbats had been excluded.

However you look at it, the claim that "the base" was nearly unanimous in opposing Miers is demonstrably FALSE!

The Barabas wing of the GOP was headquartered at sites like Confirm Them.com, which continues to include Mike's America on their blogroll, sandwiched in between the other hotbeds of Barbabism: Michelle Malkin directly above and National Review immediately below. Perhaps it's just another example of conservative support for affirmative action and diversity, I'm not sure.

Here's one of the rare comments at National Review Online that expresses my current thinking in a different way:
Instead of Democrat corks popping today, we have Corner corks popping. I hear them from here. Of course, your corks have been close to popping for some weeks now, and some explosion of some sort was bound to occur.
I'm dismayed: in the course of this victory, you've raised an unseemly noise among conservatives, and now you're patting yourselves on the back, and Bush on the head, and letting him--and all us ignoramuses who support him--know that everything will be okay. Because you're happy, I guess.

A most unseemly business. Not just a kerfuffle. Ugly and unnecessary. But I can't just be glad it's over. Sorry it ever happened. With friends like the Corner, who needs to be President?

Now--onward and upward: find the right ideologue, then dare to cry "Foul!" when some Democrat demands litmus tests.
Validating Democrat ideological litmus tests by imposing one of our own.. Just another reason to thank Barabas conservatives for undermining the leadership and effectiveness of President Bush and advancement of the conservative agenda.

It's clear that our Barabas conservative friends were itching for a fight. And when President Bush didn't give them the nominee to fight FOR, they decided to fight the President instead of our political opponents.

Thanks again, Barabas conservatives! Thank you SOOO much!

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Miers Withdraws

Pontius Pilate, the Roman Governor of Judea, freed the murderer, Barabas, instead of Jesus Christ because Barabases followers yelled louder.

Even though wide and deep support for President Bush and his nominee, Harriet Miers existed throughout the nation, a narrow cabal of those on the far right and the left, sprinkled with a small number of doubting Thomases in between, made enough noise to drive their concerns over and above the quiet majority that continues to support President Bush.


Are You Happy?

The firestorm of media reports exclaiming the fatal weakening of the Bush presidency has only just begun. Now, every decision he makes, on other nominees, the war, the economy, Social Security will be leavened by the political wounds inflicted on President Bush by fellow conservatives. Here we are, less than a year into the President's second term and the fractures from this debacle will creep slowly into the bones of our political body, hastening the lame duck status of President Bush and neutralizing his leadership.


A New Nominee: History Is Not Kind

Miers is the first Supreme Court nominee to withdraw since Douglas Ginsburg, the replacement for the defeated Robert Bork, withdrew in 1987. President Reagan, the previous two term Republican President, faced a similar weakening in his authority and nominated Anthony Kennedy to the bench. Kennedy went on to join the left of center majority on the court in decisions which conservatives have decried ever since.

Should the President nominate someone more evidently conservative, like my first choice Janice Rogers Brown, he will face a united Democrat Party with a badly divided Republican Party unable to muster any greater support than we managed for previous nominees. Does the Barabas wing of the Republican Party have the strength to carry a nomination forward on it's own? NO! And if that quiet majority that IS the true base of the Republican Party rightly decides to remain silent, the likely outcome will be another unity candidate, even less appealing to the right whiners who sunk the Miers nomination.

Not One More Dime to RNC?

Should the President nominate Janice Rogers Brown, or another conservative with appeal to the right whiners, then I expect the folks at Confirm Them.com and other Barabas hot spots to walk back from their threats to abandon the Party and put their money where their mouth has been the last few weeks.

I have documented a number of the comments from these folks and I can tell you, that before I offer financial or other support to confirm a nominee to the liking of the Barabas wing, I will expect to see the folks who threatened to burn their membership cards in the Republican National committee post receipts of their recent donations at their web sites.

Many of us, who do represent the broader base of the Republican Party and the broader conservative movement (you know, the voters you need to WIN an election) would be justified in taking our marbles home and letting the right whiners of the Barabas wing carry the battle this time. But that's not likely to happen since the real base understands it's mature obligation and loyalty to Party, President and nation transcends narrow sectarian interests.

Do You Support President Bush?

I was proud to say "I support the Miers nomination" and have that support registered in the online blogger tally here. I would now call on fellow conservatives to join me in saying "I support President Bush" with no ifs, ands or buts. If you cannot manage that sentence without qualification, then I suggest you begin practicing how to say "House Speaker Nancy Pelosi" and "President Hillary Clinton."

One more time:

I Support President Bush!

  • In the Miers debacle Republicans have turned the old rallying cry: "Give them an up or down vote"upside down.
  • Republicans in the Senate have overturned the principle of protecting Executive Branch documents.
  • After witnessing this latest episode can we know expect our GOP Senators to grow a spine and defend an even more controversial nominee?
Chris Matthews summed it up this way: "Bush is lame duck with broken right wing"

Democrats are elated today! How do you feel?

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Miers Review

At the time of this writing, an overwhelming majority of readers, 71%, support the confirmation of Harriet Miers to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Opposition to the nomination appears to come mostly from a cabal of far right conservatives coming over from Confirm Them.Com and groups of lefties originating mostly in New York City, and Boston. Toss in a few no votes from useless Michael Moore screamers that were previously banned from commenting on this site and a couple of non-citizens expressing an opinion from overseas and a truer expression of the conservative base becomes clear. They all say the same thing: I SUPPORT THE MIERS NOMINATION.

Oh, and in case you are wondering how I know where the no votes come from, it's a variation of the technology which allows me to welcome readers, like you, from .

Here's a wrap up of all the Miers related info on these pages:


Looking Back to the Good Old Days

Ah, the good old days when Repbublicans seemed more united and victory was sweet. This feeling passed so swiftly after last year's presidential election, I wandered further back in my archives of great GOP moments for added inspiration.

I dug up this photo, which I took in Perrysburg, Ohio on October 12, 1984 when President Reagan wheeled into town on "Car One," the Ferdinand Magellan, designated for the exclusive use of the President of the United States.


President Reagan's speech at this event is item #6 here.

The Ferdinand Magellan currently resides at the Gold Coast Railroad Museum, located next to the Miami, Florida Zoo.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Bloggers For Miers: Declare Yourselves!

Thus far, readers at Mike's America have said "I support the Miers nomination" by voting 72% in favor of her confirmation to the Supreme Court.

However, if you visit one of the comment sections at Confirm Them, you're likely to see a repeated insistence that "the base" is nearly unanimous in it's opposition to Miers. First off, I would prefer that our folks avoid using the term "the base", as it is also the translation for Al Queda.

But more importantly than that unfortunate appellation, I reject the notion that the majority of conservatives are opposed to the Miers' nomination. I know many conservatives who support the President and his decision to nominate Miers, but it seems their voice is not being heard.

Many of these folks do not have blogs, or comment at blogs, or call in to talk show programs. But they have demonstrated their commitment to conservative ideals over a lifetime nonetheless.

But for you blog folk who support the Miers nomination here's another way you can get out your message and provide additional balance to this crucial nomination.

The Truth Laid Bear... that quirky blogger ranking system has another set of parameters to which bloggers FOR Miers should pay immediate attention.
TLB is tallying up pro-Miers and Bush undermining anti-Miers crowd.

If you are registered in the TTLB Ecosystem, simply insert the phrase: "I support the Miers nomination" into one of your posts (quotes not required and any formatting will do). Daily Updates to this page will provide the tally.

Have at it folks!

I support the Miers nomination

and for the benefit of our Vichy French readers:
Je soutiens la nomination de Miers !

Conservative Spat Damaging 2006 Election Prospects

Dont' say I didn't warn you. The following comment was in response to one of my cautionary messages at Confirm Them:

From Bemused Troll:

Mike, I dont care how weakened [the President] & GOP look from here on out!
...
As far as Im concerned the Miers nomination should be trashed and to hell with the rest of Bushs agenda.

Ive decided not to care about him anymore than he cares about conservatives like me.

That comment is not at all an exception. It seems that many of the "my way or the highway" brand of conservatives are ready to burn their membership cards to the Republican Party and toss away the hardfought gains of the past few years just because George Will, Anne Coulter and Bill Kristol don't get it when it comes to President Bush's restructuring of the Supreme Court with people HE knows and trusts.

And where does such open division get us? Remember ROSS PEROT? Eight years of Clinton destroying our national security and undermining societal valuse was the result of that fit by peeved Republicans.

If you think that Hillary Clinton will appoint judges more in line with your political philosophy, keep whining... You'll get your wish. But don't come complaining to me after it happens.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Miers Nomination: Charge Up the Freon and Keep on Chillin'

There's been enough hot air unleashed over President Bush's nomination of Harriet Miers to the United States Supreme Court to melt the polar ice caps. For the sake of mother earth, it's time to turn down the thermostat and keep on chillin'.

It's been a week of wild rumors and speculation in the Washington punditocracy. Some even falsely suggesting that Miers had cut off courtesy visits with Senators and that she might possibly ask President Bush to withdraw her name.

Perhaps it's time, past time, that we review President Bush's nomination of Harriet Miers in the context of his record of judicial nominations and other acts as President:

President Bush promised judicial nominees for the Supreme Court "In the mold of Scalia and Thomas."

Let's take a look back at Clarence Thomas before he ascended to the high court.

Ken Masugi, who worked with Thomas at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sees a parallel to Miers in record, accomplishments and judicial experience. Masugi reminds us that Thomas was:
Called a lightweight scholar, an affirmative action appointee, and even a dangerous thinker for proposing that the Declaration of Independence gave meaning to the Constitution. Those were conservative criticisms. Thomas supporter George Will referred to his "half-baked" natural law theories.
And Thomas was not a lifelong conservative:

From "Judging Thomas" by Ken Foskett: Like many blacks of his generation, Thomas was drawn to the Black Power Movement. He devoured books by black nationalists like Malcolm X, and donned army fatigues, black boots, and a beret. "When he came looking like that, he looked like he was ready for war," Thomas's friend recalls. He protested the Vietnam War, even marching on the Pentagon.

The Hedgehog reports that Thomas's legal career was undistinguished to say the least:
I don't think Justice Thomas's pre-SCOTUS career would be described even as that of a "fine lawyer." It looks like a fairly undistinguished legal career with lots of political positions and bureaucratic administration thrown in (albeit at high levels). It's not clear to me that Thomas had "years of practice" in constitutional law, or that he had an "intense interest" in the subject.
Thomas had been on the federal bench for less than a year when President Bush (41) appointed him to fill the seat of the retiring Thurgood Marshall. The rest, as they say, is history.

How Does Miers Measure Up to Other Supremes?


Click on the box above and test your knowledge.

President Bush's Record on Nominations

President Bush has appointed a series of known and respected conservatives, Priscilla Owen , Janice Rogers Brown , Thomas B. Griffith, William H. Pryor Jr., Richard Allan Griffin, David McKeague. And that's just those confirmed since May.

Are conservatives happy with those nominees, now sitting judges?

The President also appointed Bolton to the UN OVER the heads of filibustering Democrats.

Are conservatives happy Bolton is at the UN?

The Bush Record: Conservatives Happy?

Are conservatives happy with the President's stand on Iraq and the war? No backing down or compromise there.

And how about those tax cuts? Are conservatives happy with those?

Sure, there are areas where many of us may disagree with President Bush: immigration, federal spending, farm bill, steel quotas, lack of any veto etc.

Remember that President Bush was barely elected in 2000 and in his first two years the nation was evenly split with Democrats controlling the Senate a portion of that time. Only in the last three years have we slowly, almost painfully, increased our margins in both the House and the Senate in 2002 and 2004. In 2004 we re-elected President Bush with increased vote totals from women, black, hispanic and Jewish voters.

We Made a Choice Last November:

We had TWO choices on November 4, 2004: Bush or Kerry.

Would conservative be happier with President Kerry's judicial nominees?

Would conservatives be happier with President Kerry's foreign policy? Global test anyone?

And what about federal spending under Kerry? How about illegal immigrants receiving expanded rights at the expense of citizens?

When one of the current crop of carping conservatives gets elected President, then he or she can do it their way. And the rest of us will be free to complain.

But if you voted for Bush, and respect his accomplishments and have faith in his leadership, then you should support your man. If you don't support him, you support the Democrats by default.

Keep up the civil war and start getting used to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi" and this headline: "Pro-Choice liberal nominated by President Hillary for Supreme Court seat."

Eyes on the Prize: A New Supreme Court

Nearly every conservative would agree that the goal in appointing justices to the federal bench, and most importantly to the Supreme Court is to install persons who would steer the court back to it's traditional roots in interpreting the law and the constitution, not making law, nor usurping state powers.

President Bush has remained remarkably consistent in that regard. And it also bears reminding that Harriet Miers has been at his right hand throughout the selection and confirmation process for judges. A commenter at Hugh Hewitt had this insight that is well worth sharing:

Miers was, I am sure, involved in many discussions about what it was that W wanted in a nominee. She knows that he wants an Originialist, that he wants someone in the mold of Scalia and Thomas. She also knows that the court is his legacy.

As a woman of faith and obvious integrity, do people honestly believe you would accept the nomination while knowing in her heart that she would shatter all of her president's plans?

I doubt it. If she was going to be a Souter, don't people realize that if she had any integrity she would say, "Thank you Mr. President, but I am not what you are looking for."

As I recall, Bush 1 made the mistake of picking someone else's compadre, not his own. W knows what he is doing.
A reader and frequent commenter at Mike's America had this inital thought on Miers as posted at Right Wing News: "I'd like to think this nomination was part of a Grand Plan, I really would. We'll see soon enough."

There have been a great many complaints that Miers was not a brilliant constitutional scholar, nor a longtime movement conservative. But consider Socrates qualifications for judges:

Four things belong to a judge: to hear courteously, to answer wisely, to consider soberly, and to decide impartially.-- Socrates

Wouldn't it fit that "Grand Plan" to have a justice on the Supreme Court who was NOT part of the judicial establishment that has brought us to where the court is today?

There's no law that says a justice on the court need be a lawyer, let alone a constitutional scholar. And if you go back and take the Miers quiz again, you'll notice that many current and former justices lacked that background.

Lastly, and especially since conservatives are the focus of this commentary, I'm reminded of the following quote from William F. Buckley, Jr. that I heard him speak many years ago and have long remembered:

"I'd rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University." William F. Buckley, Jr.

The Damage if Miers Withdraws

Many conservatives continue to howl vociferously that the Miers nomination should be withdrawn, prior to a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, slated to begin on November 7.

Speaking of William F. Buckley, Jr., the online version of his famous conservative publication National Review has been a hotbed of anti-Miers suspicion. In it's free wheeling "The Corner" section, Rich Lowry posted the following on October 21: "The likeliest result is that everyone forgets about Harriet Miers within a month, and we all unite around the new nominee."

He's right that we may forget about Miers and move on. But move on to where?

After Robert Bork was defeated by Senate Democrats in his bid to join the Supreme Court in 1987, President Reagan nominated Federal Judge Douglas Ginsburg to take his place. It was later learned that Ginsburg admitted to smoking Marijuana earlier in his life and his nomination was withdrawn. At that point, the presidency was so politically weakened that a "unity" nominee, Anthony Kennedy was selected.

Want the Justice Kennedy History to Repeat Itself?

It's perhaps more true that this whole conservative dustup will be forgotten shortly after Miers is confirmed, and votes on the court as President Bush expects her too, in the mold of Scalia or Thomas. Should she later be the deciding vote to overturn Roe versus Wade and return the power to decide that issue to the states, the Holy Grail of conservatism, those currently opposing her will, as Ricky Ricardo used to say to Lucy :"have some 'splainin' to do."

Many of those who would withdraw this nomination before it even came to a hearing before the Judiciary Committee were among those calling loudest for President Bush's previous nominees to receive an "up or down vote."Should we know turn that notion on it's head simply because we have an entrenched view of who or what a Supreme Court justice should be?

Sources, Inspirations and Fellow Believers:

Flopping Aces had links to Ken Masugi insight on Clarence Thomas and Hugh Hewit. Thanks as always.

The Mary Hunter at Bacon Bits sparked the rant which formed the backbone of the above post.

Carol Platt Liebau has been on the front lines of this discussion at Confirm Them where I recently suggested they change the name of the site to: "Confirm Them only if I agree with them 100% otherwise toss the Republicans to the wolves."

Beldar,a Texas lawyer, has also represented a reasoned perspective on the issue and carried the message to friends at National Reviews: "The Corner."

I don't want to leave out the Dean Emeritus of the Boston University School of Law, Ronald A. Cass: "Stop Whining Right Choices and the Courts." And of course the excellent analysis from The American Thinker: "Don't Misunderestimate Miers and Melanie Kirkpatrick "Give Her a Break" editorial in the Wall Street Journal.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Say BOO to Liberals This Halloween

Muther Sheehan's Halloween costume above gave me an idea. How about an olde fashioned neocon Halloween! Scare the socialism right out of your liberal friends with the following ideas from the Peoples Cube. Designs below and more are available on T shirts to wear to the neighborhood party, or you may just want to use the ideas to decorate your house for trick or treat.


Any more good Halliburton Halloween ideas out there?

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Saddam Trial Begins

The trial of Saddam Hussein began today in Baghdad with charges being heard for the massacre of civilians in Dujail.

Above, little Jafar, sits on his father's lap and holds a photograph of memorial for his grandfather and uncles murdered by Saddam in Dujail, Iraq in 1982. Perhaps our lefty friends could explain to little Jafar or his father why war wasn't the answer... or that weapons inspections would somehow put an end to the genocide.

In Dujail, a protest of families who lost relatives in that massacre. Contradicting the xenophobic ignorance of some lefty commenters, the photo above illustrates the Iraqi habit of carrying framed photographs of honored leaders and memorialized family members.

Louis Freeh's Revenge, Part II

It's like the gift that keeps on giving. Former FBI Director Louis Freeh, who revealed on Sixty Minutes how President Clinton sold out national security for a donation by the Saudis to his presidential library, takes it a step further; appearing on Meet The Press this past Sunday:

MR. RUSSERT: Your new book, "My FBI," has created a lot of debate with some of the comments you've made about the investigation regarding Khobar Towers. Let me remind our viewers, Khobar Towers, June 25, 1996, tragic scene, 19 Americans killed when car bombers blew up a facility where American servicemen were staying.
...
MR. FREEH:...What do you say about a president and a national security advisor who, for two and a half years while the Khobar investigation is going on, which the president tells the American people is a critical investigation, no stone will be left unturned. What do you say about a president who never asked me for a status on the case? They never asked me, "Louis, what's going on? Any progress by the FBI?" Absolutely no interest in the case.

When I finally came back to Sandy Berger and told him we now had evidence that the Iranian government had murdered 19 Americans--killed, wounded over 300, his first reaction was, "Who knows about this?" And his second reaction was "Well, that's hearsay." This was an administration that was not interested in finding out that the Iranian government had blowed up--had blown up Khobar Towers. ...

we prosecuted this case very hard. We couldn't get an indictment during the Clinton administration. And in terms of Sandy Berger's work, let me tell what you he did. Talk about ineptness and compromising an investigation, he writes a letter--the president of the United States writes a letter to the Iranian president in 1999, a letter that says, "We think you may be involved in the murder of our 19 Americans at Khobar. Please help us or you won't get better trade assistance or foreign relations by the United States." They never told me they were writing that letter, Tim. The president of the United States never told the attorney general and the chief investigator that they were writing that letter.

To make it worse, and to show the ineptness, the letter was supposed to be delivered to President Khatami. They gave it to the Omanis to deliver it. It was misdelivered. It was delivered to the spiritual leader, who went berserk. It compromised the Saudis, because it was clear from the letter that the Saudis had told us about the Iranians. The Saudis were never told about the letter. This is how they prosecute the case. It would be the equivalent of the attorney general writing John Gotti a letter and saying, "Mr. Gotti, we know a couple of your capos are involved in major racketeering cases. Could you please cooperate with us" but not telling the U.S. attorney and the FBI that was investigating the case that such a letter was being sent.

Freeh was Clinton's Scapegoat

MR. FREEH: [Bill Clinton] didn't wait till his book [My Life] to attack the FBI or try to undermine me. It was sort of a regular routine, if you remember, at the White House, after a while. His press spokesman would get up and they would say, "What does the president think of the director?" And the press spokesman, using some of those same bullets and talking points, would say, "Well, the president thinks the FBI director is doing the best he can," which was a direct attack on a sitting FBI director. I never commented on the president of the United States while I was in office, despite being attacked, being undermined. He didn't like the FBI. He thought the FBI and the FBI director, you know, had a personal animus against him because they were always investigating him.

Well, you know what? We were always investigating him because there were always Bill Clinton allegations. And independent counsels were investigating him. Ultimately, the Congress of the United States was investigating him. He didn't get it that this wasn't personal, that the FBI director has the responsibility of conducting those investigations. And the fact that he didn't like it, I understand it. I wouldn't like being investigated by the FBI for seven years, either. But the fact of the matter is, we didn't come up with the allegations. We didn't look for things to do. We had a lot of serious work we'd like to do besides the nonsense that preoccupied us with the president.
Touche Louis!

Full Moon Sheehan Sighting!

Muther Sheehan's Halloween Costume Revealed!

I'll take this as proof that with conservatives tearing at each other's throat, and a possible conclusion to the Plame Blame Game in Washington, the lamestream media has lost interest in Muther Sheehan.

But right on schedule, the recent full moon, brought another spate of Sheehan sightings and stories.

Recently, Muther Sheehan returned home to Vacaville, California to a heroes' welcome. Mike's America readers may recall that Muther Sheehan's Vacaville home was remodeled earlier this year by a group of area craftsmen, who donated time and materials to the project.

But, we can just see Muther Sheehan saying "Thanks suckers" as she puts up the for sale sign on the newly renovated home and moves to Berkeley, capital of flag burning, hate America socialists. Yes, her former hometown paper, The Reporter, reports that the Muther has left her remaining children behind so she can be closer to the people she loves.

The unemployed Muther has also bought a new set of wheels, a sky-blue Volkswagen Beetle convertible.

"Peace" Activist and Defeat America advocate. Nice work if you can get it.

Muther Sheehan Attacks Hillary Clinton, Buys Life Insurance Policy

At our last Sheehan sighting, (the previous full moon) the "absolute moral authority" that Muther Sheehan has been endowed with allowed her to hector a veteran and war widow, nine months pregnant, saying "Your baby is going to be fatherless for a lie." Later, she went on to denounce Senator John McCain (R-AZ) of being a "warmonger." This is the same McCain who spent all those years in a North Vietnam prison camp called the "Hanoi Hilton." That camp was a gulag, not a Guantanamo.

Now, Muther Cindy has really stepped in it... calling Hillary Clinton a "war hawk."

Has the Muther not heard of all the people who have crossed Hillary or Bill Clinton and not lived to tell the tale? If readers need a reminder, see "Dead Men Don't Talk."

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Kurds 4 Bush, Part II

A couple of our Michael Moore lickspittles made some typically snide and scurrilous remarks after viewing the first photo of Kurdish women displaying photos of the Iraqi President meeting President Bush while waiting in line to vote.

You can read some of the smuggery in this comment thread. Just for the record, the source is Getty Images, and a catalog of similar photos is here.


One particularly snide moonbat remark is that the women in the prior photograph were not "smiling" so they must have been forced to display these photos. In the one above, the first woman displays about as much warmth as a Kurd can, after realizing how liberal/socialist human rights activists completely turned their back on the genocide of the Kurds when the activists allied themselves with the evil Hussein and against United States efforts to bring democracy, freedom and hope to the region.

Editors note: The earlier photograph was selected because it more clearly showed the two Presidents at the White House. The one above, does a better job at conveying the emotion of the person displaying the photograph.

Bush a hero to Iraqis? Why it's almost more than a moonbat can take! Damnit!

Monday, October 17, 2005

Tid Bits

"Mainstream" Media Searches Karl Rove's Garage:

In a desperate attempt to find something, ANYTHING with which to undo President Bush, the mainstream media forced Mrs. Rove to reveal the contents of their garage, pictured above. Among the items found were a large crate labeled "fragile" which is thought to be the crate used to pack up the Holy Grail, as depicted in the film "Raiders of the Lost Ark." It's been suspected that Bush has used supernatural Christian relics to reign over the Democrats. Now, there is proof.

For more shocking details found in Karl Rove's garage see this dynamite report at: Ex-Donkey Blog. You won't believe what he has uncovered.

On a serious note, I'm struck by the fact that a million dollar house has only a one car garage, and apparently no other storage.

Tom Delay Prosecutor Lost List?

From the Houston Chronicle: Indictments against DeLay, Jim Ellis and John Colyandro state that Ellis gave "a document that contained the names of several candidates for the Texas House" to a Republican National Committee official in 2002 in a scheme to swap $190,000 in restricted corporate money for the same amount of money from individuals that could be legally used by Texas candidates.

But prosecutors said Friday in court that they only had a "similar" list and not the one allegedly received by then-RNC Deputy Director Terry Nelson. Late in the day, they released a list of 17 Republican candidates, but only seven are alleged to have received money in the scheme.

Is this another example of the famous Texas Democrat tactic of "fake but accurate?" They couldn't find the original list, so they just took a list of Republican candidates in Texas, SOME of whom MIGHT have received donations?

The "mainstream" media would be laughing it's collective donkey's butt off if a Republican prosecutor tried to pull such a fast one.

Speaking of Laughing Our Collective A*# Off:

In another clear example of the "fake but accurate" school of journalism, NBC reporter Michelle Kosinski was doing pretty well projecting the usual sky is falling routine regarding the tragedy du jour, the floods in New Jersey, until a couple of men waded by in the ankle deep water.

I avoided mentioning this story, which has been widely covered elsewhere, until I saw the following comment at A Tangled Web, A British blog:

OK, I see why you were confused, David. The "Today" show doesn't do news, just "personal interest" stuff and promos for shows that are going to be on NBC later that night. All of the morning shows in the US are like that.

True, but apparently the author of that remark isn't aware that the desire to fake it up or make it up is endemic in nearly ALL of the "mainstream" media, not just fluffy morning shows. Look no further than the 48 hour hysteria-fest broadcast live from New Orleans in September for more examples.

Owners Manual, Best of Me Symphony:

The Owner's Manual includes Mike's America post "Multiculturalism is Societal Suicide" in the latest Best of Me Symphony, paired with the Best of Sigmund Freud. Trot on over to the O.M. and see the rest.

MoonBat Moron Machine

Ahh the full moon... as always, it's bring the moonbats out of the caves and the other assorted socialists out from under their rocks.

We might miss them when the moon begins to wane, so I installed the Autorantic Virtual Moonbat, from Sean Gleeson. Long after our most recent Moonbat, Adam, has flown back into the cave, we can just turn to the Autorantic and get a more coherent response than poor West Hollywood Adam was usually able to provide.



Thanks Moonbat Monitor, for suggesting Autorantic users adjust the settings for particular moonbat covens. This toy is just as much fun as the Progressive Truth Generator from our friends at the People's Cube.

President Bush: Hero to Iraqis

Well you know our lefty friends are prone to scoff at ANY good news from Iraq, especially if it makes President Bush look good. His decision to follow-up on the will of Congresss, as expressed through the Iraqi Liberation Act, signed by President Clinton on October 31, 1998, has faced constant obstruction from many of the same Democrats demanding that Clinton remove Saddam.

Let me be clear on what the U.S. objectives are: The United States wants Iraq to rejoin the family of nations as a freedom-loving and law-abiding member. This is in our interest and that of our allies within the region.

The United States favors an Iraq that offers its people freedom at home. I categorically reject arguments that this is unattainable due to Iraq's history or its ethnic or sectarian make-up. Iraqis deserve and desire freedom like everyone else. The United States looks forward to a democratically supported regime that would permit us to enter into a dialogue leading to the reintegration of Iraq into normal international life.

President Clinton, The White House, October 31, 1998


Does that sound familiar?
One man talked about the problem, one man solved the problem.

Who do Iraqis Credit with their freedom?

Ask these Kurdish women in Suleimaniyeh, northern Iraq. As they wait to vote in the October 15 constitutional referendum, they proudly display photos of President Bush and Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, taken at a recent White House meeting.

Any soul who expresses a true desire for peace, can be happy that Iraq is now moving from an era of violence, oppression and fear to a new day, where differences are settled through a legitimate political process. Whatever the outcome of the constitutional referendum:
The October election is a victory for peace!

Thanks to Flopping Aces, where I found the photo. He found it at Dr. Sanity. She saw it at Free Thoughts. The orginial is from Getty Images.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Iraqi Miracle of Freedom Continues

Yesterday, Saturday, October 15, 2005 was another miraculous and historic milestone for freedom in Iraq and peace in the Middle East and the world.

Early reports show a strong turnout with the expectation that the constitution will be approved. A late compromise allowing the new parliament to further amend the constitution encouraged Sunni participation with some areas reporting an 80% turnout of that minority group which had previously governed Iraq unchallenged.

Even Fallujah, the former terrorist stronghold and a largely Sunni community had voter participation estimated at 65%.

Whatever the outcome, it's clear that the Iraqi people prefer a democracy which offers a choice leading to hope for a better future. They have come a very long way in a short period from the days when Saddam Hussein claimed legitimacy with a 99% "vote" in favor of his re-election as President.

You can see it in the faces of the Iraqi people:

The eyes of this woman show hope, but the face is worn from years of worry. Her ink stained finger points to the foreground and a future for her family and her country.

Symbolizing that hope for the future is this picture of man and woman who, like many other Iraqis, brought their children along to witness vote and a new day for their nation.

Iraqis are increasingly and effectively assuming the role for their own security and future as evidenced by these soldiers who voted and protected the polling places. Election related attacks were down more than 80% since the January election.

See more Iraq photos here.

It's been a long and difficult road, or as Secretary Rumsfeld called it: a "slog", to reach this latest milestone. And there will likely be additional downturns in the days and years ahead. But as chief bin Laden lieutenant, Ayman al-Zawahri said in a recent letter to architect of evil, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, Iraq is the central front in the war between the darkness of the extreme caliphate and the peace and freedom of a democratic Iraq and Middle East.

Moving Forward, Looking Back: The Trial of Saddam Begins

The next step forward will be the first trial of Saddam Hussein, set to begin Wednesday, October 19. The first charge to be heard relates to the slaughter of approximately 140 civilians in Dujail, a predominantly Shia farming village 40 miles north of Baghdad. The massacre was ordered after shots were fired at Saddam's convoy as it drove through the village in 1982.

Up to fourteen additional charges may be prosecuted, possibly to include the evidence of genocide found at the site of mass graves in al Hatri.

One trench contains only women and children, apparently killed by small arms. Another contains only men, also killed by automatic gunfire.

Mr Kehoe said the women and children had been taken from their villages with their belongings, including pots and pans, shot - often in the back of the head - then bulldozed into the trench.

Some of the mothers died still holding their children. One young boy still held a ball in his tiny arms. A thick stench hangs over the site, as well as at a makeshift morgue nearby.

?The youngest fetus we have was 18 to 20 weeks old. Tiny bones, femurs, thighbones the size of a matchstick,?? says investigating anthropologist P. Willey.

Contrast the happy photos above with this face of the nightmare that was Iraq under Saddam. Hekeema Nagiy cries as she searches for the bodies of her two missing sons in mass graves discovered in Hilla. A photo documentation of this crime against humanity is here.

Whither the Naysayers?

One of the most difficult obstacles to achieving the victory in Iraq with it's subsequent benefits in the larger effort to gain peace and security is to overcome the undermining of that effort and the constant obstruction by unprincipled political opponents in the United States.

That effort continues.

In the runup to the first Iraqi vote on January 30, Democrats wheeled out Senator Edward Kennedy to make a major policy address condemning the failure of President Bush's Iraq policy. In that speech, he said Americans are "losing the battle for the hearts and minds of the Iraqi people" and "the U.S. military presence has become part of the problem, not part of the solution." He went on to call our involvement in Iraq's liberation a "shame and stain on America's good name as a beacon of human rights."

Days later, eight million Iraqi people voted in a free and fair election.

This time around, Al Gore drew the short stick. In a speech at an economic forum in Sweden he was asked how America would be different had he been elected (or successful in suppressing military ballots from among Florida voters). "We would not have invaded [Iraq] a country that didn't attack us," he said.

Gore, and many other Democrats including Kennedy, are still counting on the short term memory of Americans regarding some of what he said about Iraq when Clinton was in Office:

"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country."
Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002.

"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power."
Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002.

"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is using and developing weapons of mass destruction."
Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002.
Answering the Democrat obstruction machine is an Iraqi reader at Little Green Footballs:

This vote alone was a great blow to the terrorists in Iraq. This was a great step towards a solid democracy in Iraq. The constitution now guarantees Iraqi's rights and protects them from their government. The rule of law will prevail stronger now. I no longer fear for my Iraqi family from their government. They now truly hold their destiny in their hands, and they can plan for their future. The security issues are being dealt with on a daily basis and progress in Iraq is measurable and evident.

Again the Ajinas in California and in Iraq owe a great thank you to the men and women of the USA (military & civilians) who are making all of this possible. Thank you for all your sacrifices, all your hard work, and your tenacity and vision and thank you for a bright future.

Regards,
Haider Ajina

Freedom. It's a beautiful thing!


Ask an Iraqi what he or she thinks of our Iraq policy!

Friday, October 14, 2005

Connecticut, Nancy Pelosi and the Culture of Corruption

The Washington Times, America's Newspaper: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat, is downright disgusted with Rep. Tom DeLay, what with the pair of indictments handed down against the Texas Republican.
So she sat down and wrote about her displeasure, mailing her opinions to a fellow House minority leader in the Connecticut General Assembly. (Mrs. Pelosi, obviously, has come to think that Democrats sit in the minority of every elected body in the country.)
Polite Republican that he is, state House Minority Leader Robert M. Ward took the time to write back.
'Thank you for ... alerting me to alleged Republican 'abuse of power' and 'arrogance and corruption' in Congress,' began Mr. Ward, observing that legislative impropriety and abuse of power have long been of concern to him in his minority position.
'Unfortunately, there is a rich history in Connecticut of 'arrogance and corruption' by the majority party's legislators,' he said.
Mrs. Pelosi then read about the Democratic lawmaker from Norwalk who was convicted of accepting a cash bribe for helping somebody obtain a pistol permit; about the Democrat from Hartford who resigned when slapped with 85 criminal counts of bribery, fraud and witness tampering; and the Democrat from Pomfret who resigned after pleading guilty to charges of sexual abuse.
'Just last month, state Sen. Ernest Newton of Bridgeport resigned his seat and pled guilty to accepting bribes in exchange for securing state contracts, and abusing campaign funds,' Mr. Ward said. 'It should be noted that all the legislators I mention have one important thing in common with you, congresswoman: They are all Democrats.
"P.S. It is my fondest hope that your assumption that the Democrats are the minority in the Connecticut House proves to be prophetic," Mr. Ward said.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Happy 80th Birthday Margaret Thatcher!

A royal and star studded affair in London last night on the occasion of Margaret Thatcher's 80th birthday (story here). Photos from the event here.

The honor of the toast went to the Rt Hon Michael Howard, Leader of the Conservative Party who said:

"I am delighted to congratulate Margaret Thatcher on the achievement of her eightieth birthday.

"We have reflected this year on how Winston Churchill's political will and iron courage saved a nation.

"What Churchill did in wartime Margaret Thatcher did in peacetime. Her political will and her iron courage saw off the threats to our way of life that Britain faced in 1979. We all owe her an enormous debt. I wish her well for her birthday and for many years to come."

Amen!

The years are starting to catch up with Lady Thatcher, who has suffered a series of small strokes the past few years. But I will always remember her last State visit to see President Reagan at the White House, on November 16, 1988. Witnessing firsthand the obvious warmth and chemistry between these two lions of the 20th Century was a rare treat. I took the following photograph:

Larger image here.

If you would like to view the cover of the program for the State welcoming ceremony, I put my copy online here.

Twelve years later, I happened to see Lady Thatcher again as I was walking through Belgrave Square in London. Imagine my surprise when a motorcade rounded the square and Margaret Thatcher popped out of a green Jaguar and bounded up the steps to her home, followed by husband Denis.

None of those who admired her friendship for President Reagan and the United States in the cause of freedom and peace, and prosperity will forget her eulogy, delivered by video at Presdident Reagan's funeral (Real Player format here, text here).

For more on the Thatcher legacy, read:

Reflections on the "Thatcher Factor" from the London Times:

Only one man in a thousand, Groucho Marx observed, is a leader of men, the other 999 follow women. In an accidental sense, therefore, the great wit anticipated the life and career of Margaret Thatcher. Her 80th birthday party last night was, understandably, an occasion for nostalgia. Her impact was and is such, however, that it may be decades hence before it is appreciated. If she had merely been the dominant political figure of the 1980s, that would have been enough to earn her an honoured place in history. Yet Thatcherism is not solely a product of history and, in an often complicated way, it continues to shape our own politics and the world beyond us.

Read the rest here.

Miers Another Thomas II and More Froggy Froggy!

Flopping Aces posted two excellent pieces on the Mier's nomination. The first, by undoubted conservative writer and publisher R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr. of The American Spectator and another great comparative piece on Miers and Thomas in The Hedgehog Blog.

Both are hightly recommended.

Curt also decided to step in the moldy fromage by reposting some of the exchanges here with the froggies. He also adds a list of French surrenders to flavor the discussion further.

And the Frenchies continue to weigh in with their puffed up empty and unwashed opinions in the comments sections below.

Update: A Tangled Web comes out with this report: French prisons worse than Abu Ghraib according to European Human Rights Commission:

Describing them as "dungeons"... "It is incredible that people are imprisoned in such conditions, without ventilation and without natural light. I have never seen a worse prison." Mr Gil-Robles, 60, an academic lawyer and Spain's former national ombudsman, spent 16 days in France last month inspecting prisons, detention centres and mental hospitals. (from The Telegraph)
Hey, let's do the frogs a favor and let them eat their cake at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba... Seems our "gulag" really DOES seem like a holiday camp by comparison.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

5th Anniversary of USS Cole Attack

Five years ago today, the USS Cole was attacked in Yemen. Earlier this month I had the opportunity to see the Cole, whole and unbowed in Savannah, Georgia.

That attack, was the last of many which occurred during the Clinton Administration, whose soul focus seemed to be that we wanted people around the world to like us.

Clinton never did anything about the Cole attack, just as his response to every terror attack was feckless and weak.

We reaped the harvest of that weakness on September 11th and all the attacks around the world since then.

Oh Mon Dieu! The French Do Not Bathe! Quelle Fromage!

The French bash-athon continues....

Leave it to some froggy, hiding out in Scotland, who had this to say about my post "Let Them Eat Cake" which references the Subway, sandwich flap.

If your French is as rusty as mine, the socialists at Google provide a poor translation of the page here.

A Tangled Web joins in the froggy fray, with this report that surrender monkeys have an aversion to soap as well as fighting for their survival.

Note to ATW editors: That's not the only four letter word that averts the French... Like whiny unwashed leftists in the U.S. soap and WORK seems to escape their vocabulary.

Multiculturalism is MADNESS!

Well at least the Aussies seem to have figured out what is at stake in this international war against terror (call it whatever you want, I don't care... it's a WAR!)

While Britain is caving in to Muslim pressure to control the culture by banning any cultural symbols of pigs (from the A.A. Milne character Piglet, to a statue of a boar) and demanding Burger King change the graphic on a serving of ice cream because it might look like the Arabic word for Allah; The Brits former penal colony of Australia, seems to have figured out that accommodating these fanatics is the first step to surrendering to their Islamic extremism.

From the Australian publication: The Age.
EDUCATION Minister Brendan Nelson has bluntly told Islamists who do not want to accept and teach Australian values that they should "clear off".

And [Prime Minister] John Howard has warned that mosques, prayer halls and Muslim schools will be watched "to the extent necessary" to ensure they do not give comfort to terrorism.

A day after the Prime Minister's summit with Muslim leaders, the Government stepped up its push to get "Australian values" — epitomised, it says, by the Anzac story of Simpson and his donkey — taught comprehensively to Muslim children.

On Tuesday Treasurer Peter Costello said people thinking of coming to Australia who did not like Australian values and preferred a society that practised sharia law should go elsewhere.

Dr Nelson said he would soon meet the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils to discuss programs to ensure those in Islamic schools and all other children fully understood Australian history and values.

"We don't care where people come from; we don't mind what religion they've got or what their particular view of the world is. But if you want to be in Australia, if you want to raise your children in Australia, we fully expect those children to be taught and to accept Australian values and beliefs," he said.
...
"But equally, if people are not willing to give their first loyalty to this country, they obviously must understand that that will arouse enormous concern within the rest of the Australian community."


Thanks to Paul Serbu for bringing this to my attention.

Al Queda Letter to Zarqawi validates Bush Strategy, Reveals Left Defeatist Tactics

How many times have you heard some looney tune lefty claim that "Iraq has nothing to do with the war on terror?" Well, apparently chief bin Laden lieutenant, Ayman al-Zawahri, didn't get that memo. In this letter to master butcher Abu Musab al-Zarqawi (which you can read in it's nauseating entirety here) Zawahiri pretty much confirms every word that President Bush stated in his excellent strategic review of the war (speech excerpts here).

You will also notice parallels between what Zawahiri says and what is frequently cited as preferred policy by that great strategic thinker: Muther Sheehan.

Using the media, playing on the history of Vietnam and working to remove the United States from any defensive posture is the goal of both groups.

The consequences of what amounts to an unholy alliance (excellent treatise ) between the left and the Islamists would be the horrific deaths of millions of innocents and a new dark and evil age descending on the earth.

BREITBART.COM - Just The News: "'Things may develop faster than we imagine,' Ayman al-Zawahri wrote in a letter to his top deputy in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. 'The aftermath of the collapse of American power in Vietnam _ and how they ran and left their agents _ is noteworthy. ... We must be ready starting now.' ...

"It has always been my belief that the victory of Islam will never take place until a Muslim state is established ... in the heart of the Islamic world," al-Zawahri wrote.

The letter laid out his long-term plan: expel the Americans from Iraq, establish an Islamic authority and take the war to Iraq's secular neighbors, including Lebanon, Jordan and Syria.

The final stage, al-Zawahri wrote, would be a clash with Israel, which he said was established to challenge "any new Islamic entity."
...

"More than half of this battle is taking place in the battlefield of the media," he wrote. "We are in a media battle in a race for the hearts and minds of our umma," or community of Muslims, he wrote.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

A Blonde Bond? The New 007?

Stop the presses! Stop even the well deserved French bashing (but only "pour une minute, si vous plait").

Now, the Brits are preparing to step in the moldy fromage by replacing Pierce Brosnan, and the darker coiffed James Bonds of the past with a blondie, Daniel Craig.

Bond Fans of the World Unite and Protest This Outrage!

For diehard Bond fans, there is only one 007, and his real name is Sean Connery. Even though true fans appreciate the contributions of Australian George Lazenby, and the unfortunate Timothy Dalton, and many of us have accepted Pierce Brosnan, whose portrayal of the famous fictional character was much more sophisticated and less cartoonish than the sometimes over the top bubble gum and popcorn work of Roger Moore (Moonraker anyone?).

The news that Daniel Craig may fill the role of this important cultural icon fills devotees of the Bond franchise with a sense of dread and foreboding.

I ask producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G Wilson: where is your loyalty to your fans? Year after year we have been shelling out good money to view your films. How do we know this relative unknown is qualified for such a vital cultural role?

I realize it may be sexist to suggest this, but no doubt, the publicity campaign which released this photo of Daniel Craig's back side is a craven attempt to appeal to women. But should that be enough to convince loyal fans of his suitablity?

However, I am willing to wait and see the film, slated as a remake of the classic "Casinoe Royale." Yet, I feel it difficult to imagine that there could ever be a replacment for the David Niven spoof by the same name. Can there be a better performance in that film than Deborah Kerr as Agent Mimi/Lady Fiona McTarry and drunken Scots?

I just may have to boycott this new Bond and wait until it's offered for free on cable.

Miers: Another Clarence Thomas?

I couldn't remeber where I had seen this article. Thanks to Flopping Aces for reminding me.

The Center for Local Government: Local Liberty: From my experience in the Thomas court nominations, I recall many of the accusations now being hurled at Harriet Miers. (See, most recently, this attack by Bork and this story; Specter chimes in.) Thomas, for whom I was a special assistant (1986-90) when he was Chairman of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, was called a lightweight scholar, an affirmative action appointee, and even a dangerous thinker for proposing that the Declaration of Independence gave meaning to the Constitution. Those were conservative criticisms. Thomas supporter George Will referred to his "half-baked" natural law theories.

There were grimaces when the first President Bush called him the most qualified nominee -- which of course he was. (I dissent somewhat from Confirm Them's account, which confirms me in the flaws of conservative criticism of Meirs.)

But he defied all these criticisms to become the best originalist justice on the Court and the leading conservative government official in America. Does the Thomas nomination offer a guide to understanding Miers?

As I have argued before, President Bush has a strategy with the Meirs nomination, to create a Roberts Court in a different image (hoping he can have at least another appointment). Most of Thomas's supporters and critics regarded him as a black conservative instead of a bold thinker who saw the need to preserve freedom by undoing the bureaucratic state. To have said that openly would of course have been fatal to his nomination prospects. (See No Left Turns.)

We have a better view of Bush's ambition for Miers in Senator Cornyn's defense of her, calling her a justice who would bring the "dangerously out of touch" court "back down to earth." This means not just replacing one justice with another but altering the public perception of the court as well. Hence Meirs' faith plays a political role. To tame the Court we need a combination of skills: Thomas's originalism, Scalia's rhetorical brilliance, Roberts' legal skills, and now Miers' practical experience, producing a plain reading of the Constitution.

At first it seems odd that conservatives seem to be the ones ready to filibuster (led by Trent Lott?) over a lost intellectual feast/food-fight. In fact, it reflects the narrowness of conservative thinking, which has focused on replacing one justice with another, instead of considering changing the entire institution. Still the White House must have a campaign strategy for her, and she needs to impress. See Power Line's warnings.

UPDATE: Is George Will a constitutional Gnostic?

Hugh Hewitt on Miers' conservative detractors. His update links to this post.

UPDATE 2: Beldar reports on Miers' impressive record as a litigator, via Steven Hayward at NLT.

See previous Miers ruminations in our Courts file.

European Bus Firm Punishes French Cleaning Ladies

Here's what our oh-so-sophisticated Europeans are up to when they are not busy committing genocide against each other:

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | Bus firm takes car sharers to court: They might have been congratulated for their 'green' efforts in an area of heavy air pollution.
Instead a group of French cleaning ladies who organised a car-sharing scheme to get to work are being taken to court by a coach company which accuses them of 'an act of unfair and parasitical competition'.
The women, who live in Moselle and work five days a week at EU offices in Luxembourg, are being taken to court by Transports Schiocchet Excursions, which runs a service along the route. It wants the women to be fined and their cars confiscated.

Two years ago a business tribunal threw out the company's case. It is now pursuing the women in a higher court, claiming that their action has cost it ?2m (£1.4m).
The women explained that for many years cleaners used the TSE line for the 40-minute ride across the border, which cost them ?110 (£76) a month.

"Using our cars is quicker and at least twice as cheap. And on the bus we didn't have the right to eat or even to speak," said Martine Bourguignon. Odette Friedmann added: "In the evening instead of coming to get us at 9.30pm the bus would arrive at 10.30pm. If you made any comment to the driver you'd get a mouthful of abuse."

"It's absurd and ridiculous," said the women's lawyer, Cécile Klein-Schmitt. "I don't see how any magistrate can find any legal basis for this case."

TSE is also suing the women's employer, Onet-Luxembourg. "They've basically accused us of inciting the car-sharing scheme when we have nothing to do with the method of transport used by our staff," said director Frédéric Sirerol.

The court case will be heard in January next year.


Vive La France!

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