Monday, January 31, 2011

A Victory for Common Sense and the Constitution: Judge Declares ObamaCare Unconstitutional

There is nothing in the U.S. Constitution which allows government to FORCE people to buy health insurance!
"Regardless of how laudable its attempts may have been to accomplish these goals in passing the act, Congress must operate within the bounds established by the Constitution." Decision by U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson. Full decision here (PDF).
Grade school students, in reasonable schools, are taught that the U.S. Constitution is not a bill of rights for government power but restrictions on the power of government. Unfortunately, that basic interpretation was turned on it's head by Democrats when they passed ObamaCare with it's built in requirement that ALL citizens must have health care.

What is called the "Individual mandate" (something Obama said during the 2008 campaign he was against...OOPS!) is central to ObamaCare. Without it, the funny money funding scheme worked out by Democrats, which is already a joke, is completely unworkable. Get rid of the individual mandate and the bill is DEAD, DEAD, DEAD! And that's just what happened today. U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson ruled that the requirement for all Americans to buy health insurance violates the Constitution. And because Congress failed to put a severability clause which would enable the bill to remain in force even if one portion was ruled unconstitutional the entire bill is void.

In his ruling, the Judge cited Obama's own words:
“I note that in 2008, then-Senator Obama supported a health care reform proposal that did not include an individual mandate because he was at that time strongly opposed to the idea, stating that, ‘If a mandate was the solution, we can try that to solve homelessness by mandating everybody to buy a house,’” Judge Vinson wrote in a footnote toward the end of his 78-page ruling Monday.
The Washington Times story reporting this decision goes on to cite:

Much of Judge Vinson‘s ruling was a discussion of how the Founding Fathers, including James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, saw the limits on congressional power. Judge Vinson hypothesized that, under the Obama administration‘s legal theory, the government could mandate that all citizens eat broccoli.

White House officials said that sort of “surpassingly curious reading” called into question Judge Vinson‘s entire ruling.

“There’s something thoroughly odd and unconventional about the analysis,” said a White House official who briefed reporters late Monday afternoon, speaking on the condition of anonymity
Yes, using Obama's own words and applying the Constitution and common sense must be a difficult concept for Obama's White Hous staff to grasp. Perhaps someone can put a copy of U.S. Constitution for Dummies on the White House teleprompter!

Battle Lines Draw for Supreme Challenge

Soon, the action will move to the U.S. Supreme Court.
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Full size image here.

Meanwhile, the Obama Administration, rather than appeal for a faster hearing from the Supreme Court, is stalling the matter while proceeding with implementation of the law. More proof that the Constitution is an impediment to their power which they intend to get around!

Don't You Miss the Authentic and Heartfelt Humor of Ronald Reagan?

PhotobucketReading second rate jokes off a teleprompter just don't have the same zing do they?

Ronald Reagan was a natural storyteller and joke teller. That talent was honed with his acting skills to create a speaker of rare and unequaled gifts. Underneath it all was genuine sincerity for what he was saying and affection for the people he was speaking to (unless it was the news media, but there too he managed a smile).

For years, Mike's America has offered favorite Reagan audio clips including favorite selections of Reagan's humor on a player in the side bar. As part of our celebration of the 100th anniversary of Reagan's birth I offer this short video of Reagan humor:


Join the Centennial Celebration!

Want to share your own Reagan memories? The Reagan Centennial is in full swing all week as we count down the days to February 6, 2011 marking the 100th anniversary of the birth of the greatest American President in living memory. Drop your comments at the bottom of this post. If you have a blog post featuring the Reagan Centennial, drop a link in the comments section.

Iran's Ironic Urging of Egyptian Revolution and Dangerous Ties to Radical Muslim Brotherhood

PhotobucketThe Egyptian protesters demands are heresy when made by Iranians in the streets!

Egypt is the largest state in the Middle East with a population of 80 million. They have a top notch, U.S. aided military since Egypt became our ally after making peace with Israel. They have been an important counterweight to Iran. Naturally, the Iranians would like to change that. So, it's easy to understand why they are doing everything they can to bring about the downfall of the Mubarak regime and replace it with another radical Islamic state.

From Press TV, an Iranian government news site:

Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast has called on political leaders in Egypt to follow the “rightful demands” of their people.

“Iran expects Egyptian officials to listen to the voice of their Muslim people, respond to their rightful demands and refrain from exerting violence by security forces and police against an Islamic wave of awareness that has spread through the country in form of a popular movement,” Mehmanparast said Saturday.

He further pointed out that Tehran attaches great importance to the fulfillment of public demands in Egypt and added, “Iran regards demonstrations by the Muslim people of this country as a justice-seeking movement in line with their national-religious demands.”

Mehmanparast went on to say that the Islamic Republic of Iran is “closely following up and monitoring developments in Egypt.”
Those who recall the brutality of the Iranian regime in July 2009 when hundreds of protesters were killed and the insult of family members told to pay for the bullets that killed them might find Iran's current posture a bit hypocritical to say the least.

Speaker Boehner Will Not Be Deflected From Budget Cutting Mandate

Freezes, gimmicks and distractions won't take Boehner's eye off the ball!

Readers might  be forgiven for thinking that someone was actually out to try and distract Republicans from their cost cutting election mandate. After all, we've had one distraction after another to take away attention from the GOP's effort in the new Congress. First it was the Tucson shooting, then the hype about Obama's "Sputnik moment" State of the Union speech and now the crisis in Egypt.

But all that isn't taking House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) off message. In this interview with Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday he makes it clear he intends to carry though the assignment that the voters last November gave to the new Congress:




Highlights:

BOEHNER ON PRESIDENT OBAMA’S REQUEST TO RAISE THE DEBT LIMIT WHILE CALLING FOR MORE “STIMULUS” SPENDING:

“The President of the United States is asking us to increase the debt limit. On Tuesday night, he didn’t even address it. And I don’t think the American people will tolerate increasing the debt limit without serious reductions in spending and changes to the budget process so that we can make sure that this never happens again. The other night all he did was call for more ‘stimulus’ spending. ... Listen, there has been a spending spree going on in Washington the last couple of years that is beyond control. And if the president is going to ask us to increase the debt limit, he’s going have to be willing to cut up the credit cards.”

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Reagan Centennial: Remembering the Challenger Shuttle Disaster

PhotobucketAlways on Watch remembers how President Reagan in times of tragedy comforted us all...

We kick off our Reagan Centennial Celebration on a sad and moving note. The Reagan diaries from the Reagan Library site remind us that 25 years ago on January 29, 1986 the Space Shuttle Challenger exploded shortly after liftoff. This rare failure of U.S. space technology shocked and saddened the nation. That evening, President Reagan delivered the following short address from the Oval Office. Contrast his ability to connect in clear emotional terms with his audience to other presidents...



REAGAN: Ladies and gentlemen, I'd planned to speak to you tonight to report on the state of the Union, but the events of earlier today have led me to change those plans. Today is a day for mourning and remembering. Nancy and I are pained to the core by the tragedy of the shuttle Challenger. We know we share this pain with all of the people of our country. This is truly a national loss.

Nineteen years ago, almost to the day, we lost three astronauts in a terrible accident on the ground. But we've never lost an astronaut in flight; we've never had a tragedy like this. And perhaps we've forgotten the courage it took for the crew of the shuttle. But they, the Challenger Seven, were aware of the dangers, but overcame them and did their jobs brilliantly. We mourn seven heroes: Michael Smith, Dick Scobee, Judith Resnik, Ronald McNair, Ellison Onizuka, Gregory Jarvis, and Christa McAuliffe. We mourn their loss as a nation together.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Will Obama Lose Egypt the Way Carter Lost Iran?

Chilling parallels between current revolt in Egypt and Iran in the 1970's!

What's going on in Egypt makes me wonder: haven't I seen this movie before? Don't get me wrong, I am all in favor of REAL democratic political change in the Middle East. But all too often in the past the radicals have usurped the move for democratic reform and used it as a mask to gain power.

I'm thinking especially of Iran where the Mullahs used widespread discontent to displace the Shah of Iran, then institute the current Islamic theocracy with all the ills and worldwide death and destruction from terrorism that have flowed from that result.

I'm not alone in expressing this concern. Writing for the Daily Telegraph, an Iranian by the name of Helia Ebrahimi warns that "Dark forces lurk in the shadows of hope." Ebrahimi continues:
The unfolding tide of revolution in the Arab world is a bittersweet moment that is bound to open the tinderbox of Islamic fundamentalism.

The downfall of 30 years of oppressive rule, and a people's uprising should create a sense of hope.

But as a Persian born in an early period of revolution, the prospect leaves me stone cold scared.

This is not the Berlin Wall. And what is waiting on the other side is not West Germany.
...
The Iranian revolution had many of the hallmarks of today's Egypt.

The Shah of Iran was the corrupt despot. He had lined his pockets, was ruthless against political opposition, and was seen by his subjects as a puppet for the West.

When the young took to the streets 32 years ago they thought they were signing up for a new era where they would be able to determine their own future.

But the youth were superseded by another group who were kept in check by the Shah - the clerics. Just as Mubarak today keeps the Muslim Brotherhood, the radical side of the Muslim faith, under control.

Within months the revolution unleashed the Islamic Republic.
More troubling is the sign of possible Iranian backing in this current situation coming from state controlled media in Iran where the "revolution" is being hailed.

While some dismiss concerns about radicalism in the Muslim Brotherhood, which is the largest opposition group in Egypt, it's worthwhile to recall that a radical faction of this group was responsible for the assassination of Mubarak's predecessor, Anwar Sadat, who won the Nobel Peace Prize for making peace with Israel. The Brotherhood also gave birth to Al Queda and Ayman al Zawahiri, second only to bin Laden came from that background.

Does Obama Know What He is Doing?

My other chief concern is the lack of any real foreign policy experience in the Obama Administration. In the last two years Obama has shown such incompetence in his disrespect to our allies and to fumbling and naive approaches to nations like Iran. Not one of the serious problems in foreign policy that he cited as a reason for change during the 2008 campaign has been successfully addressed.

Like the Carter Administration in the late 1970's it seems the Obama Administration has no solid grasp on events. I fear we may find ourselves six months from now with the loss of a great ally and an Egypt that is spiraling towards the same radicalim we saw in Iran with the result that the poison that was unleashed by the Ayatollahs will spread further.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

You Are Invited to the Reagan Centennial Celebration

Observing the 100th anniversary of the birth of one of America's greatest PresidentsPhotobucket
Readers are invited to share their thoughts on this anniversary by commenting on blog posts, proving links to their own blog posts or posts at Facebook and Twitter. I'll highlight those comments and posts as the celebration progresses. Keep up to date with all the lastest by following Mike's America on Facebook and Twitter.

Reagan Celebration Resources

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President Reagan blowing out candles on his birthday cake in the Oval Office. 2/5/82.
  • The Reagan Library and Museum has a special page of Reagan Centennial events and information.
  • The Library also has an extensive collection of Reagan photographs available for viewing and downloading.
  • The Library You Tube channel has many of President Reagan's most famous speeches.
  • There is a special section of the Library with a searchable index of Reagan quotes which includes audio or video.
  • Quote Daddy has 394 Reagan quotes which you can share on Facebook or embed in blog posts such as the one below:


Join the celebration!

Write your own blog posts and leave a link back to it in the comments section below. Share your Reagan memories on Facebook and Twitter.

And stay tuned here for more Reagan remembrances through February 6th!

In 30 Seconds, Obama's Top Medicare Official Demolishes Obama Care Promises

Well at least there is one person left in the Obama Administration who cannot tell a lie!

Readers may recall that there are still a few Democrats out there brazen enough to suggest that the promises of ObamaCare are still possible. Yet, on Wednesday, in a hearing before the House Budget Committee, Richard Foster, the Obama Administration's Chief Actuary for Medicare had the following exchange with Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA)in which the two primary pillars of ObamaCare were demolished:



Q:True or False, will ObamaCare hold costs down? A: False.
Q:If you like your plan, you can keep it? A: False.

Democrat representatives at the hearing tried to use the occasion to attack the alternative plans offered by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan in his Roadmap. But guess what? When push came to shove Chief Actuary Foster actually said that Ryan's GOP plan would save more money than the current Dem program.

Don't expect to see this news widely reported. Most news agencies will be too busy rerunning the lie that ObamaCare will decrease health costs and let you keep your current coverage!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Senate GOP Leader Exposes the Smoke and Mirrors in Obama's State of the Union/ Campaign 2012 Kickoff

McConnell will make a good Majority Leader!

It's only a seven minute, 29 second summation, but if time is short, cue the player to the 3:29 mark for the conclusion, of which the text is below:


Ready to Work
Floor Speech by Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell(R-KY)
January 26, 2001

“Two years ago, the President came to Congress and told the country we needed to invest in the future through a trillion dollar Stimulus that was supposed to be a model of transparency and efficiency. Within a year, this bill which was sold to us as the answer to our nation’s economic woes had become a national punch-line, a tragic waste of money. And two years after that investment in our future was signed into law, what do we have: Nearly three and a half trillion more dollars in debt and nearly three million more Americans out of work.

“These out-of work Americans don’t want to sit around and wait for the Democrat vision of the future to appear, compliments of the experts in Washington. They’re not particularly moved by someone’s vision of what America could look like 40 years from now if only they hand over more of their paychecks or more their freedoms now. They want a job. They want Washington to stop trying to help them and to let them help themselves.

“So the President talks a good game, but call us skeptical. Because when all the applause is over and the speeches are through, the debt is higher, more and more wasteful spending and job-stifling regulations come to light, and millions of Americans are still asking the same simple, persistent question: where, Mr. President, are the jobs?

“The President has made some good suggestions on areas where we could work together. And we stand ready to do so, just as we have in the past. But we’ve now seen enough to know that what the President says and what he does are often two very different things. He’s called for investments in energy before, and we got the Stimulus. He called for working with us on trade. We’re still waiting. He’s said before we need to get serious about the debt, even as it’s reached dizzying new heights as a result of his policies.

“He speaks like one who recognizes that spending is out of control, and yet his response is to propose that we lock in spending levels we all know are completely unsustainable. This isn’t progress. This is an admission of defeat. Americans don’t want a spending freeze at unsustainable levels. They want cuts, dramatic cuts. And I hope the President will work with us on achieving them soon.

“To put it simply, the President still sounds like he’s trying to have it both ways. His tone may be changing. But based on past performance, we’ll remain skeptical until we see results. Republicans have pledged to the voters that we will do everything we can to cut wasteful government spending, work to lower the debt, get government out of the way of economic growth, and work to repeal the health care bill, even as we replace it with the kind of common sense reforms people actually want. The President has shown he’s willing to talk about some of these things. Let’s hope he surprises us by showing a new willingness to do more than that, to actually work with us on achieving real results.”
Does anyone think Obama is really serious about controlling Federal spending?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Empty Words: Obama's 2010 State of the Union Speech. Expect More of the Same Tonight!

Focus on jobs, deficit and civility. We're heard it all before without result.

Have the television networks started the season of show repeats already? That's what you may be asking yourself if you watch Obama's 2011 State of the Union Address Tuesday night. You'll likely hear exactly what Obama has already said so many times without result.

But never mind, the media campaign to resurrect Obama's failed presidency will be going into high gear. The liberal media has been working on Obama's rehabilitation ever since the November election. Earlier this month they got a big boost by falsely accusing conservatives of inspiring the Tucson shooter then praising Obama for coming in and calling for civility. Thus far, it's worked as Obama's poll numbers have taken a major dip up for the first time in his presidency.

Obama Staying Liberal and Calling it Centrist

Expect the usual pundits to praise Obama's speech and declare that it's evidence of a "move to the center." Even if everyone, including Greg Sargent at the Washington Post understands that Obama isn't actually moving to the center, but attempting to "redefine the 'center' as something more in line with his own current policy approach and priorities... his speech will be less about moving to the center than about redefining what we call the center."

And editorial in Investor's Business Daily put it this way:
Will the man who conned the public into believing he was a moderate, but who has governed as the most immoderate leftist in the country's history, now try to pull the same con so he can be elected again?
...
Give us a break. Does anyone think that the Barack Obama who set out to "transform" the America that he found so distasteful has himself been transformed? Does anyone believe that if the mid-terms went the other way and the odds of his re-election hadn't gone south, Obama would be considering any detour whatsoever on the leftist low road he has charted? Call us skeptics, but we don't.
The pundits will say that Obama has changed and that he is listening to the American people. Oh really? Well, let's just take a look at his 2010 State of the Union speech and ask what happened to this great head fake?

Excerpts from 2010 Speech: Been There, Done Nothing!

In Obama's 2010 State of the Union speech he mentioned jobs 23 times. He declared that "jobs must be our number one focus in 2010." Obama went on to say:

The true engine of job creation in this country will always be America’s businesses. But government can create the conditions necessary for businesses to expand and hire more workers. We should start where most new jobs do –in small businesses.
Yet, Obama spent much of 2009 and 2010 attacking businesses, especially targeting the U.S. Chamber of Commerce which represents most of the small business jobs creators in the country. When he wasn't attacking business, he was passing regulations in health care and financial services that made it more difficult for small businesses to grow and hire.

The result of Obama's 2010 focus on jobs? Unemployment stayed well above 9% for the entire year despite massive stimulus spending which failed to live up to every promise from Obama that recovery was just around the corner. Unemployment remains the worst of any recession in modern times:

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Deficit Double Talk

In the 2010 speech Obama mentioned the federal budget deficit 14 times. Mostly, he repeated the false claim that passing health care would reduce the deficit. But everyone who gives the matter the slightest thought realizes that insuring millions of new people with a permanent government program will only repeat the mistakes of previous entitlements programs which are currently out of control where spending is concerned. Recently, 200 economists from government and the private sector stated that Obama Care will add $2 trillion to the deficit over the next 20 years.

Also in the 2010 speech Obama promised " to go through the budget line by line to eliminate programs that we can’t afford and don’t work." He claimed to have found $20 billion in savings. Yet the Democrat controlled House and Senate continued to pass and Obama continued to sign bills with massive deficit spending leading to the second year in a row of record deficits.

Obama's other plan to lower the deficit was his proposal for the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform. In a post called "A Moment of Truth" the Commission delivered it's report. It was dead on arrival.

Meanwhile, Obama has changed the word "spending" to investments and is already planning more "investments" in 2011.

A "Deficit of Trust" and Civility?
Finally, in 2010 Obama spoke of a "deficit of trust" and promised more transparency and openness just weeks before Democrats crafted the final draft of the 2,300 page health care bill entirely in secret and without adequate time to review before voting or Obama's signature.

Central to restoring trust was this call for civility:

OBAMA: Washington may think that saying anything about the other side, no matter how false, is just part of the game. But it is precisely such politics that has stopped either party from helping the American people. Worse yet, it is sowing further division among our citizens and further distrust in our government.

So no, I will not give up on changing the tone of our politics. I know it’s an election year.
Substitute the word "Washington" for Democrats and that's an accurate statement. Who can forget the clearly false statements Democrats made about conservatives in the wake of Tucson shooting? And let's not forget Obama's own campaign calls to "punish enemies" and telling Republicans they would have to "sit in the back."

And after declaring that he was ready for "monthly meetings with both the Democratic and Republican leadership" those monthly meetings never happened. It was not until August that GOP Leader Mitch McConnell )R-KY) finally had a face to face meeting with Obama. It was not until after the November election that he met with both House Speaker to be John Boehner (R-OH) and McConnell.

"Where is Joe Wilson When You Need Him?"

Expect to hear more of the same flimflammery in tonight's speech. Calls for deficit reduction while proposing new spending now called "investments." One sided demands for civility and jobs, jobs, jobs all the while defending the job killing agenda of the past two years.

As William Huges wrote in the Philadelphia Examiner "Where’s Joe Wilson when you need him?" Rep. Wilson (R-SC Mike's America's Congressman) shouted "You lie" when Obama tried to pull the wool over the eyes of congress in a speech promising that health care reform wouldn't cover illegal aliens (later admitting it could). Joe Wilson was censured for that outburst. When was the last time a Democrat was censured for accusing Republicans of behaving like Nazis or wanting people to die?

So, there won't be anyone in the House tonight to point to Obama's deception. As with most of Obama's presidency it will be "just words, just speeches." And unlike the great presidents of the past, Obama's words never bring the promised result!

For the GOP response to "just words" look for Rep. Paul Ryan's address in response on Speaker Boehner's Facebook page for a livestream of the Ryan's speech. He's the young new Chairman of the House Budget Committee who won't be using "just words" but real numbers.

As for Obama's big move to the center? I cite again the editorial in Investor's Business Daily:
We also doubt that the president's alleged moves to the middle are going down very well with the liberals who form the president's base. In fact, we're surprised we haven't heard more from them if the stories are true that Obama is prepared to leave them high and dry to improve his chances for re-election.

Then again, the silence among liberals may signal they're no more confident than we are that Barack Obama intends to do anything substantive that qualifies him as a moderate.
Will the American people allow themselves to be fooled again? Stay tuned!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair Understands the Nature of Islamic Terrorism

The threat is much deeper than most are willing to admit!

Our true #1 ally, the British (not the French as Obama recently declared), are holding an inquiry into the Iraq war and the lessons learned. Testimony from a range of British officials from former Prime Minister Tony Blair on down is being given. During Blair's testimony he addressed the underlying problem of Islamic extremism with a definite focus on Iran's role in fomenting terrorism. In this short three minute video clip he defines the problem in clarity that is rare for any politician. It's well worth your time to view:


BLAIR: The single most difficult thing we have to face today and I think we face it still -- I think this is why I personally take a very hard line view on Iran is the risk of this new type of terrorism and extremism  based on an ideological perversion frankly, the faith of Islam, combining with technology that allows them to kill people on a large scale.

one view is this extremism it is an encrustment on an otherwise manageable situation. Don't over-worry about it. Don't provoke it. Don't stimulate it. Just manage the situation. The other view, which is my view, is that this thing is deep. Its potential to wreak enormous and devastating damage is huge and we have to confront it.
...
I think the numbers of people who are engaged in terrorism or become suicide bombers is very, very limited, but I think the global ideology that gives rise to this extremism has far greater roots, and, you know, I am out in the Middle East a lot of the time now and it's the same issue everywhere. It comes up -- it doesn't always come up in issues to do with terrorism or violence. It is about modernisation. It is about attitudes to the west and it is deep. It's a lot deeper.

So what happened when you got Al Qaeda coming into this situation is that it was more than just a few terrorists. It was backed with the ability to push an ideology that said the west is fundamentally hostile to Islam and that's why we have to wage war against these people and we have to wage war against them and against the leaders that deal with them.
Rep. Peter King (R-NY), the new Chairman of the Homeland Security Committee plans hearings on Muslim radicalization soon. It would be great if he could get Tony Blair to testify there as well.

Hat tip to Larry Bernard

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Two Years After Obama Signed Order to Close Gitmo, Terrorist Prison Still Open

Question: Why did the outrage over Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility die out?
Answer: The current President is a Democrat!

Readers will recall the heady first days of the Obama Administration. Hope and Change had finally arrived in DC. Now, things would be better and the dark stain on our nation caused by Bush era policies would be removed. And pigs would also learn to fly!

In one of his very first acts as President, Barack Obama, in a ceremony where he was surrounded by retired military leaders, signed the Executive Order which decreed that the prison for terrorists in Cuba would be closed within one year.

Democrats hooted from the rooftops. Senator John Kerry (D-MA) described the event this way:
“Today is a great day for the rule of law in the United States of America,” adding: “America is ready to lead again — not just with our words, but by our example.” --Sen. John F. Kerry January 22, 2009
Writer Sam Stein at the Huffington Post gushed:
The move will be greeted with widespread approval around the world, the end of a blotch on America's image abroad. Coming in the form of an executive order, it carries with it the power of law.
But even over the top left wing wordsmiths couldn't hold a candle to Obama's own statement about the order. He was still in campaign mode. Here's how CNN reported it:

Promising to return America to the "moral high ground" in the war on terrorism, President Obama issued three executive orders Thursday to demonstrate a clean break from the Bush administration, including one requiring that the Guantanamo Bay detention facility be closed within a year.

During a signing ceremony at the White House, Obama reaffirmed his inauguration pledge that the United States does not have "to continue with a false choice between our safety and our ideals."

The president said he was issuing the order to close the facility in order to "restore the standards of due process and the core constitutional values that have made this country great even in the midst of war, even in dealing with terrorism."
The signed order was posted on the bulletin board at the Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention facility to give the prisoners hope:

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Yet, two years later, Obama's order had this effect on the prisoners as reported by one of the lawyers for the prisoners:
The pronouncement that Guantanamo would close has become broken glass on the pathway of the prisoners.
Odd, but I wouldn't think "broken glass on the pathway of the prisoners" would be much of an impediment to terrorists; many of whom return to violent jihad the moment they are released.

Any further attempt to close the facility has been stymied by Obama's signature on the major defense bill pushed through the lame duck Congress. The measure bars using any money from the bill to bring Gitmo detainees into the United States or to transfer them to any other country without a certification that the receiving nation has met strict security guidelines.

Where's Outrage over Obama's Failure?

At the Radio Vice, Steven M writes:

So where is the outrage? Let me make this clear, if President Bush (43) had signed an executive order promising Gitmo would be closed within one year and he missed the deadline by three minutes, there would be calls for impeachment by the left and the media. Yet today, Bush critics are silent concerning President Obama’s broken promise.
Thus far, the only sign of any protest has been a rather feeble attempt by the usual left wing suspects in a protest outside the White House earlier in January. Other than that, nary a peep!

How has Obama managed to escape the same scrutiny that was demanded on a daily basis of the Bush Administration? It's as easy as this: Barack Obama (D), George W. Bush (R). If Bush or any Republican were in the White House and Gitmo still open, you'd see regular stories in the "news" media citing allegations of mistreatment and how awful it was for the U.S. to maintain such a facility.

In a recent editorial in the New York Daily News they describe Obama's failure to hold the "moral high ground" in a more positive light: "Consider it a bad idea that is finally, maybe, being consigned to the dustbin of history."

What more is that now Obama may go ahead and use the same military tribunals that President Bush painstakingly created to adjudicate the disposition of the remaining detainees. It's just one more example of Obama going back to the same Bush policies which he and other Democrats had campaigned against for years.

If there is any "moral high ground" here it's the Bush policies which were in place and continue to be used to prosecute the war on terror. What a shame that for political reasons, their timely use has been denied for so long!

Friday, January 21, 2011

House of Horrors in Philadelphia Abortion Clinic

WARNING: Content is graphic and disturbing...

CBS News: A West Philadelphia abortion doctor, his wife and eight other suspects are now under arrest following a grand jury investigation.

Dr. Kermit Gosnell, 69, faces eight counts of murder in the deaths of a woman following a botched abortion at his office, along with the deaths of seven other babies who, prosecutors allege, were born alive following illegal late-term abortions and then were killed by severing their spinal cords with a pair of scissors.failed to inspect abortion clinics.
Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams says that Gosnell made as much as $1.8 million a year performing abortions. Williams goes into detail describing the case against Gosnell. Again, WARNING: graphic and disturbing:




Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams said, "There were bags, and bottles holding aborted fetuses were scattered throughout the building. There were jars lining shelves with severed feet that he kept for no medical purpose." And according to Williams, state regulators ignored numerous complaints about Gosnell's clinic, which hadn't been inspected since 1993.

Fetal remains were kept in the same refrigerator as the lunches of employees. Pets with liter boxes were in the same room used for procedures and at least one employee, a high school student with no certified training was administering dangerous anaesthetics.

The clinic had mostly poor minority patients. The few white women who used the facility were given slightly better treatment.

The failure to inspect the clinic is a scandal for the former Administration of Governor Ed Rendell(D) who finally ordered inspections of similar facilities late last year. Was the lack of any inspection regime the result of abortion politics?

 Update: Michelle Malkin has more details including the Grand Jury report and photographs.

Harry Potter Star Target of Muslim Honor Attack by Brother

Just another example of how widespread this heinous practice is....

"Marry a Muslim or you die!"

Brother of Harry Potter star jailed for attacking her
The Telegraph (U.K.)
January 21, 2011

Afshan Azad, 21, who played Padma Patil, a classmate of the teenage wizard, in the blockbuster Hollywood films based on JK Rowling's children's books, feared for her life during the three-hour ordeal, Manchester Crown Court heard.

She was punched, dragged around by her hair and strangled by her brother Ashraf Azad, 28, who threatened to kill her after he caught her talking on the phone to her Hindu boyfriend on May 21 last year, the court was told.

During the row at the family home in Longsight, Manchester, which also involved her mother and father, she was branded a ''slag'' and a ''prostitute'' and told: ''Marry a Muslim or you die!''

The actress, who now lives in London, had pleaded for leniency from the court, begging the judge not to jail her older brother.

But Judge Roger Thomas QC sent him to prison for six months after he pleaded guilty to the assault.
"Marry a Muslim or you die" is no idle threat. It's called an "honor killing" when a Muslim male family member kills a female family member who shames the family by having relations with a non-Muslim. The attacks are justified under Shariah Law, the religious code for Muslims. Mostly, these horrific crimes happen in far away places but they are increasingly happening in Western countries, including the United States, as radical Islam takes hold in Muslim communities.

As Rep. Peter King (R-NY), the new Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee prepares for hearings on radical Islam inside the U.S. I hope he will address this growing problem which seems to illustrate perfectly the problem of allowing Shariah Law to take a foothold in the U.S.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Left Wing Group Puts Wal-Mart Executive in the Crosshairs

UPDATE: Two dead in shooting outside Washington State Wal-Mart Sunday. Was gunman inspired by crosshairs and anti Wal-Mart rhetoric?

Where's the outrage from the same numb skulls who said Sarah Palin inspired Arizona shooter?

Another left wing rent-a-mob is preparing another of their home invasions designed to intimidate and silence. This time, the target is a developer living in the District of Columbia (Washington, DC) who plans to turn a vacant lot (Google maps) in Washington, DC into a Wal-Mart providing jobs and reasonably priced goods to the neighborhood.

But the usual anti-free enterprise kooks can't stand that. Especially because it's Wal-Mart. Look at the flier below where they claim Wal-Mart funds "right wing Congressional candidates."

So, they'll pack up another rent-a-mob and head to the developers house and give him the same treatment a similar group did to Karl Rove's family during the Bush years when they invaded his property and terrorized his son.

And let's not forget the ACORN rent-a-mobs who were bussed in to protest outsdie the homes of AIG executives in the wake of the financial collapse. Funny, but they never protested outside the homes of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executives who happened to be mostly Democrats!

Photobucket

Michele Malkin has more info on Democrats use of disturbing symbols. How about the baby in the chili pot? The same group also uses a target 2012 symbol. Imagine a GOP fundraiser with a baby in a pot.

Yep, this new age of civility is off to a real good start. Civility will be demanded of Republicans but for Democrats and their kooky left wing friends it's business as usual!

Obama, 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, Honors China's Hu Jintao, Jailer of 2010 Peace Prize Winner

Obama rewards Hu with highest state ceremony!

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WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 19: U.S. President Barack Obama (R) and first lady Michelle Obama (L) welcome Chinese President Hu Jintao for a State dinner at the White House January 19, 2011 in Washington, DC.
When the Communist leader of China, President Hu Jintao, visited the White House during George W. Bush's time in office in 2006 he got the 21 gun salute on the lawn but no state dinner. The Bush Administration classified the meeting as an "official visit" not a "state visit" which holds the highest level of honor and prestige. Bush did this in part to reflect continuing American concern with the human rights record of the Communist Chinese regime.

Obama on the other hand not only rolled out the red carpet and fired the canons, he put on a lavish state dinner.  This coming from a man who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009. Some have pointed out that Obama honors the regime which currently holds in jail the 2010 winner of the Peace Prize. While Obama stood on the stage to receive his Peace Prize in Oslo in 2009, there was no smiling recipient on stage last year as Liu Xiaobo sat in a Chinese jail for daring to suggest an end to one party rule in China. Perhaps Obama just likes the idea of one party rule?

Obama Disses Dali Lama, Another Peace Prize Winner and Symbol of Freedom to Tibet

Readers may recall how Obama treated the Dalai Lama, the 1989 winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. After meeting Obama in early 2010, the revered spiritual leader got hustled out the service entrance of the White House so as not to offend the Chinese.

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Exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama (L) walks out the doors of the Palm Room of the White House by trash bags waiting to be picked up, February 18, 2010 after meeting with US President Barack Obama. The meeting drew angry protests from China.
If you are wondering why Obama behaves this way I have a theory. Could it be that Obama just doesn't want to draw any attention to the winners of the Nobel Peace Prize who have actually contributed to peace?

U.S. House Passes Repeal of Obama Care

The vote is more than symbolic. It puts Obama on notice that we are serious about rolling back his socialist agenda!

Wednesday afternoon, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the two page bill to repeal the 2300 page bill known as Obama Care and rammed through the last congress.

REPEAL PASSES 245-189

Here is the roll call of the vote. How did your Representative vote? Three Democrats crossed over to vote for repeal.

Democrats continue to warn that full repeal of Obama Care would endanger the relatively small number of Americans who are unable to get health care due to existing preconditions. Yet, as Charles Krauthammer points out it doesn't take a 2300 page bill to address that need:
The problem is that most Americans know there is a lot else in there. That’s why the Democrats have lost the debate for the last two years. That’s why they’re going to continue the debate over the next two years. They know that the price for those goodies is the trillion dollars of new spending, the 138 new commissions and regulators getting between you and your doctor, a hundred thousand pages of new regulations and essentially a government takeover of a sixth of the U.S. economy. That’s a high price to pay for a couple of goodies, which you can get without any of that.
 Opinion polls continue to show strong support for repeal. A new study of doctors shows that 2/3rds of those responding think Obama Care will be bad for medicine, bad for their patients and bad for them. The new legislation has already restricted the number of new hospitals being built, threatens to cause massive retirements of physicians and is raising drug prices and other costs.

On top of all that 200 of the nation's top economists, including a former director of the Congressional Budget Office sent a letter to congressional leaders expressing their concern over the job killing and massive spending and debt that will be incurred if Obama Care is not repealed.

The bill to repeal will now go to the Senate where Majority Leader Harry Reid says he will refuse to even bring the matter up for a vote. So much for allowing both sides to have their say. But that's not the end of it. There are a number of legislative maneouvers members of the Senate who are for repeal can take as well as further legislative actions taken in the House to block funding for implementation of Obama Care. Slowly the foundation for this bill will be chipped away.

Meanwhile, 26 states, more than half of the total states in the union (unless like Obama you think there are 57) continue to pursue judicial remedies to block Obama Care from imposing unfair burdens on the citizens of their states.

Another complaint coming from Democrats is that the vote for repeal is a "waste of time" but it also takes the focus off the important work of focusing on jobs and the economy. Where have they been the last two years? Despite their promises to make jobs and the economy their top priority they squandered their majority trying to force through as much of their left wing wish list as possible. It's now up to the new masters of the House to clean up the mess and put the country back on track!

Does the New Civility Include a Dem Rep Calling House Republicans Nazis and Invoking the Holocaust?

Or is tamping down heated rhetoric something that is only expected of Republicans?

Democratic lawmaker compares GOP health law claims to Nazi 'lies'
The Hill
January 19, 2011

Democratic Rep. Steve Cohen (Tenn.) on the House floor Tuesday night compared Republican claims about the healthcare reform law to lies perpetrated by the Nazis that led to the Holocaust.

Cohen, who is Jewish, made his remarks during floor debate over the GOP bill to repeal the law.

"They don't like the truth so they summarily dismiss it," he said. "They say it's a government takeover of healthcare. A big lie just like [Nazi propaganda minister Joseph] Goebbels. You say it enough and you repeat the lie, repeat the lie, repeat the lie until eventually people believe it. Like blood libel, that's the same kind of thing.

"The Germans said enough about the Jews and people believed it, and you have the Holocaust," he added. "You tell a lie over and over again."
Cohen's remarks, first caught by ABC News, come amid heightened sensitivity to political rhetoric following the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.). Republicans have by and large stopped referring to the law as "job-killing" though they have not officially removed the phrase from the repeal bill's title.
When a Democrat like Cohen speaks about the "big lie" technique, he is talking from experience. The mass hysteria and rush to blame Sarah Palin and conservatives for the Arizona shooting was only the most recent and egregious use of that technique.

What a shame that Rep. Cohen will not be held to the same standard of media scrutiny as Sarah Palin. Failure to do so only means that the culture of overheated rhetoric Democrats claim to deplore when accusing Republicans of it will continue!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Left Wing Death Threat Issuer Wants Necklace Made of Conservatives Ears

This came two days after Obama's call for civility!

In the wake of the Tucson massacre with daily demands from Democrat leaders from Obama on down calling for civility wouldn't you think that Democrats would wish to comply with that request?

Apparently not. On Sunday, I posted the news that Eric Fuller, a left wing activist who was wounded during the Tucson shooting, made a death threat to a Tea Party leader at a public meeting. While some may dismiss his outburst as an overheated reaction, it appears that Fuller's left wing disease was worse than once thought.

On Friday, Fuller gave an interview to the NY Post. There was no Tea Party figure in the background to provoke him and from the following, it appears his case of liberal derangement is dangerously serious:

James Eric Fuller, 63, who was shot in the knee, had told The Post on Friday, the day before his arrest, that top Republican figures should be tortured -- and their ears severed.

"There would be torture and then an ear necklace, with [Minnesota US Rep.] Michelle Bachmann and Sarah Palin's ears toward the end, because they're small, female ears, and then Limbaugh, Hannity and the biggest ears of all, Cheney's, in the center," Fuller said.
On top of that, Fuller stopped by the home of Jared Loughner's parents in Tucson. I'd say that neighborhood has suffered enough without another lunatic running around. What was he doing there? Asking for shooting tips?

QUESTION: There are over 17,900,000 hits on Google for stories linking Sarah Palin to the massacre in Tucson January 8. How many stories do you think report Eric Fuller's comments about torturing conservatives and severing their ears? 18,400.

What a shame that Crazy Liberal Syndrome isn't covered by Obama Care!

One wonders whether Tucson's Sheriff Dupnik, who failed to do anything about Jared Loughner's death threats, will take this loon's threats seriously?

Rare Interview with Former Vice President Dick Cheney

Cheney: Obama Will Be a One Term President!

In a rare, wide ranging interview from his home on Maryland's Eastern Shore (one of his neighbors is former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld)former Vice President Dick Cheney discusses the heart pump that keeps him alive, prospects for a heart transplant, Obama and the highs and lows of the Bush Administration. If you miss Cheney's no nonsense style, you'll want to see this interview!

Click options, then full screen button for best viewing:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


It would be great if doctors could keep on adding parts to him and keep him going forever. Maybe we could even run him for President?

Shooting at CA High School: Is the Left to Blame?

Did the left's phony charges of racism cause shooter to act?

Here are the only facts we have at this time: the shooter,  a black student at Gardenia High School in Los Angeles County, CA opened fire this morning injuring three students. The shooter is now in custody.

Now, applying the rule that Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize winner, professor of Economics and International Affairs at Princeton and columnist at the New York Times used within hours of the massacre in Arizona earlier this month we are free to speculate, even to blame the cause of the shooting on the left wing's phony charges of racism directed at Tea Partiers in the health care debate.

Perhaps the shooter believed the white hot rhetoric which falsely accused Tea Partiers of spitting on black Congressmen and using the "n" word. Maybe the shooter snapped after being told repeatedly by those on the left that his life in white dominated society was meaningless.

We don't know what motivated him but does it really matter? After all, Krugman and the left insisted that despite facts to the contrary, those on the right created a climate of hate that certainly could have contributed to the mental breakdown of Tucson shooter Jared Loughner.

So, it can reasonably be argued that the same may be true here except that it is the left's constant race baiting rhetoric that has created and exacerbated racial tensions in this country and possibly led to this violent act.

History of Left's Propaganda Inspiring Violence

After all, readers may recall that just last September a man with a gun took hostages at the offices of the Discovery Channel demanding they do more to promote global warming. He was inspired by "the novel “Ismael” by environmentalist Daniel Quinn and Al Gore’s documentary 'An Inconvenient Truth.'"

In March 2010, parents of a family in Argentina attempted to commit mass suicide first killing a toddler, then shooting their 7 month old baby before turning the gun on themselves. The baby survived with a gunshot wound lying next to her dead parents and sibling for three days. The reason for the suicide? A note revealed the parents were afraid of global warming.

And of course Ted Kaczynski had a heavily highlighted copy of Al Gore's book in his Montana cabin hideout.

Do I qualify for a Nobel Prize for jumping to conclusions based solely on my political prejudices and in the absence of fact or has does Paul Krugman have a monopoly on that license?

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Left Wing AZ Shooting Victim Makes Death Theat to Tea Party Leader at Tucson Meeting

Imagine the headlines if it were a Tea Partier making the threats!

Hat tip to Moonbattery for passing along this gem. In the wake of Democrats one way fingerpointing at conservatives blaming them for the Arizona shooting a week ago and their one sided calls for civility I suppose it was just a matter of time before some left winger out there broke under the strain of all that negativity and misplaced blame.

But you might have thought that one of the victims of last week's tragedy would know better. Sadly, that's not the case:

Shooting rampage victim arrested at ABC-TV town hall meeting
KGUN9 Tucson
January 15, 2011

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Two things are clear from Saturday's ABC News town hall meeting in Tucson. One: Tucsonans are eager to move forward and recover from last week's horrible shooting rampage. And two: that process is going to be slow and painful. That latter point was driven home by the arrest of a shooting victim, who threatened a speaker during the taping of the program.
...
The theme of the event was "An American Conversation Continued" -- the idea being to continue the conversation that a madman's brutal rampage had interrupted. So it was inevitable that the conversation would eventually turn to politics. It did, toward the end, with Amanpour leading a discussion on a very touchy but obvious topic: gun control.

That's where the atmosphere turned tense. When Tucson Tea Party founder Trent Humphries rose to suggest that any conversation about gun control should be put off until after the funerals for all the victims, witnesses say Fuller became agitated. Two told KGUN9 News that finally, Fuller took a picture of Humphries, and said, "You're dead."
...
The event wrapped up a short time later. Deputies then escorted Fuller from the room. As he was being led off, Fuller shouted loudly to the room at large. Several witnesses said that what they thought they heard him shout was, "You're all whores!"

A Pima County Sheriff's spokesman told KGUN9 News that the department has charged Fuller with one count of threats and intimidation, and said they plan to charge him with at least one count of disorderly conduct. Humphries told KGUN9 News that he does plan to press those charges.
Fuller, who is a left wing activist, blamed Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck and Sharon Angle for last week's massacre. Apparently, the irony of him now making death threats in public and on television is lost on him.

But don't expect to see any elected Democrat officials, or any Republican leaders for that matter, rushing to the microphones to condemn the violent rhetoric used by Fuller. After all, this kind of thing is common among those on the left.

The L.A. Times reported that Fuller was taken into custody for an involuntary mental evaluation. What a shame we don't extend that practice to others on the left who have let anger rule them for far too long!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Nine Year Old's Trip to Disney Ruined After Homeland Security Ruled Him a Threat and Refused Entry to U.S.

And yet terrorists on a watch list seem to have no problem!

Remember the would be Christmas Day bomber whose underwear failed to detonate over Detroit, Michigan last year? His name was on a terrorist watch list and his Nigerian father was desperately trying to warn U.S. officials that his son might be about to commit a terrorist act. But yet, he was allowed to board a plane bound for the U.S. on Christmas Day 2009.

Since then, our government started frisking nuns and three year old children before allowing them to board planes. Transportation Security personnel stick their hands down the pants of children and others checking for explosive underwear. The alternative is to have a naked full body scan taken with the promise that the image will never be made public (until Wikileaks gets a copy).

The result of all this personal intrusion and violation of constitutional safeguard against unwarranted searches? Not one terrorist has been apprehended!

So what's next to harass the public? How about banning nine year old kids from being admitted to the country so they can visit Disney World. If it wasn't bad enough already how the Obama Administration treats the Brits  (have you seen the latest snub), then consider this:

Boy, 9, has Disney World trip ruined after US immigration rules him a threat
A nine-year-old boy's dream trip to Disney World was ruined when US immigration officials ruled he was a threat.
The Daily Telegraph (U.K)
January 14, 2011

Civil servants Kathy and Edward Francis planned to surprise their grandson Micah Strachan with the holiday of a lifetime to Florida in February.

They were only going to tell Micah about it when they took him to the airport on February 19 for the flight to the US.

They had already spent more than £1,500 on plane tickets and had been organising the trip for months.

But this week US Embassy officials denied the schoolboy a visa to enter the US.

They said there was a risk he would not leave the US at the end of his holiday and refused his application under Section 214 (b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.
Meanwhile, thousands of pregant illegal aliens are crossing our borders to give birth in the U.S. and get residency based on their child's automatic U.S. citizenship. What a shame we don't reassign the petty bureaucrats responsible for this decision to the U.S. border with Mexico so they can actually do the job they are supposed to be doing!

But hey Brit kid, don't feel bad about missing Disney World. You've already gotten the Mickey Mouse treatment from the Obama Administration. Maybe you'll get lucky and ole big ears himself will send you an apology!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Michael Steele Bows Out in Election for New RNC Chairman

Breaking news....

From Politico:
Michael Steele just bowed out of the race for RNC chairman after trailing in the first four rounds of balloting. He then said he is backing Maria Cino's candidacy.
Balloting continues for the selection of a new chairman with  Reince Priebus the odds on favorite. But will "Reince and Repeat" be an improvment over Steele? Stay tuned!

UPDATE: Priebus wins!

Getting Back to Business: House GOP Sets Vote for Repeal of Obama Care

Sadly, Dems still try and use Arizona tragedy to forestall GOP action!

The tsunami of fingerpointing blaming conservatives for the Tucson massacre is subsiding.  A massive dose of poison was deliberately dumped in the well of our political discourse by those who claimed they sought a more civil process. While their vicious and self serving calumny was overwhelmingly rejected in a CBS poll with 57% saying the GOP was not to blame for the tragedy in Arizona, the damage has already been done. Subliminally, Republicans will be more likely to pull their punches while Democrats will continue to go full bore with their attacks. Independents who may have been on the fence about Sarah Palin or conservatives in general have had the seed of doubt planted in their minds. In that, Democrats succeeded in accomplishing their goal.

We'll have to deal with the repercussions of the Democrat's shameful behavior in this episode for some time to come. Most sadly, their vicious lies took all the oxygen out of the room that might have gone instead to addressing the real problem of untreated mental illness. Should a future tragedy like this occur, we'll know who to blame.

Time to get back to the People's Business

But it's time to get back to work. House Republicans who had planned to celebrate their new majority with an aggressive legislative schedule put their plans on hold in the wake of the shooting. They got little thanks for it from the other side of the aisle. House Republicans who are holding a weekend retreat in Baltimore to discuss plans for their new majority have already announced they intend to push for a vote repealing Obama Care next Wednesday; a week later than originally planned.

Just to show that Dems have not completely given up on politicizing the Tucson tragedy there was a call by  Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) to change the name of the repeal bill which is currently titled "Repealing the Job Killing Health Health Care Law Act." Rep. Pingree implored GOP leaders to change the name and went so far as to invoke the name of seriously wounded Rep. Giffords in the title of her article at the Huffington Post: "For Gabby's Sake, Republicans Should Change the Name of Their Health Care Repeal Bill."

But changing the name is not so simple as one might imagine. It would require a new vote on the rules for bringing the bill to the floor which would open up the discussion for a whole new round of fingerpointing by Democrats and more delaying tactics.

House GOP leaders intend that the vote to repeal be passed before Obama's State of the Union Address on January 27th. Obviously House Democrats who work in lockstep with the White House on all things (even the blame game which allowed Obama to be the great healer) would like to block the vote. That won't happen.

If Democrats really want to honor Gabby Gifford, the best we can do as she recovers is to continue the work which she was doing the day she was struck down. It's time to continue with the people's business and desist from using the tragedy to forestall the democratic process. Using this tragedy for partisan political advantage must stop!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Friend Says Loughner "Did not watch TV. He disliked the news. He didn’t listen to political radio. He didn’t take sides."

Now, can we get on to addressing the REAL problem of untreated mental illness?

Here's a moving interview with Zach Osler, a high school friend of Arizona shooter Jared Loughner. It should dispel the myth that Loughner was somehow motivated by right wing political speech but I doubt it will. The left is making too much hay with that whopper to give it up. One U.S. Senator, the socialist Bernie Sanders of Vermont, is even using the tragedy as a fund raising tool. Why give up a good thing?


Osler's interview is compelling; especially when Ashleigh Banfield of Good Morning America showed Osler the mugshot of Loughner. Choking back the tears Osler said: "I can't look at that....scares me...I wish I could have helped him....something I could have done or said to help him or get him help....that's why it's hard to look at the picture of him, it looks like a monster."

From Media Bistro: Osler says his friend wasn’t shooting at people, “he was shooting at the world.” Regarding the high-pitched talk radio and cable news political rhetoric, Osler says his friend didn’t even watch the news.

"He did not watch TV. He disliked the news. He didn’t listen to political radio. He didn’t take sides. He wasn’t on the left. He wasn’t on the right."
So, can we begin addressing the REAL cause and getting help for others like Jared before the next tragedy strikes?

Sarah Palin Speaks on Arizona Massacre and the Blood Libel of Blame for the Right

"Monstrous acts of criminality stand on their own!"


America's Enduring Strength
by Sarah Palin
Facebook
Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Like millions of Americans I learned of the tragic events in Arizona on Saturday, and my heart broke for the innocent victims. No words can fill the hole left by the death of an innocent, but we do mourn for the victims’ families as we express our sympathy.

I agree with the sentiments shared yesterday at the beautiful Catholic mass held in honor of the victims. The mass will hopefully help begin a healing process for the families touched by this tragedy and for our country.

Our exceptional nation, so vibrant with ideas and the passionate exchange and debate of ideas, is a light to the rest of the world. Congresswoman Giffords and her constituents were exercising their right to exchange ideas that day, to celebrate our Republic’s core values and peacefully assemble to petition our government. It’s inexcusable and incomprehensible why a single evil man took the lives of peaceful citizens that day.

There is a bittersweet irony that the strength of the American spirit shines brightest in times of tragedy. We saw that in Arizona. We saw the tenacity of those clinging to life, the compassion of those who kept the victims alive, and the heroism of those who overpowered a deranged gunman.

Like many, I’ve spent the past few days reflecting on what happened and praying for guidance. After this shocking tragedy, I listened at first puzzled, then with concern, and now with sadness, to the irresponsible statements from people attempting to apportion blame for this terrible event.

President Reagan said, “We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.” Acts of monstrous criminality stand on their own. They begin and end with the criminals who commit them, not collectively with all the citizens of a state, not with those who listen to talk radio, not with maps of swing districts used by both sides of the aisle, not with law-abiding citizens who respectfully exercise their First Amendment rights at campaign rallies, not with those who proudly voted in the last election.

The last election was all about taking responsibility for our country’s future. President Obama and I may not agree on everything, but I know he would join me in affirming the health of our democratic process. Two years ago his party was victorious. Last November, the other party won. In both elections the will of the American people was heard, and the peaceful transition of power proved yet again the enduring strength of our Republic.

Vigorous and spirited public debates during elections are among our most cherished traditions. And after the election, we shake hands and get back to work, and often both sides find common ground back in D.C. and elsewhere. If you don’t like a person’s vision for the country, you’re free to debate that vision. If you don’t like their ideas, you’re free to propose better ideas. But, especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn. That is reprehensible.

There are those who claim political rhetoric is to blame for the despicable act of this deranged, apparently apolitical criminal. And they claim political debate has somehow gotten more heated just recently. But when was it less heated? Back in those “calm days” when political figures literally settled their differences with dueling pistols? In an ideal world all discourse would be civil and all disagreements cordial. But our Founding Fathers knew they weren’t designing a system for perfect men and women. If men and women were angels, there would be no need for government. Our Founders’ genius was to design a system that helped settle the inevitable conflicts caused by our imperfect passions in civil ways. So, we must condemn violence if our Republic is to endure.

As I said while campaigning for others last March in Arizona during a very heated primary race, “We know violence isn’t the answer. When we ‘take up our arms’, we’re talking about our vote.” Yes, our debates are full of passion, but we settle our political differences respectfully at the ballot box – as we did just two months ago, and as our Republic enables us to do again in the next election, and the next. That’s who we are as Americans and how we were meant to be. Public discourse and debate isn’t a sign of crisis, but of our enduring strength. It is part of why America is exceptional.

No one should be deterred from speaking up and speaking out in peaceful dissent, and we certainly must not be deterred by those who embrace evil and call it good. And we will not be stopped from celebrating the greatness of our country and our foundational freedoms by those who mock its greatness by being intolerant of differing opinion and seeking to muzzle dissent with shrill cries of imagined insults.

Just days before she was shot, Congresswoman Giffords read the First Amendment on the floor of the House. It was a beautiful moment and more than simply “symbolic,” as some claim, to have the Constitution read by our Congress. I am confident she knew that reading our sacred charter of liberty was more than just “symbolic.” But less than a week after Congresswoman Giffords reaffirmed our protected freedoms, another member of Congress announced that he would propose a law that would criminalize speech he found offensive.

It is in the hour when our values are challenged that we must remain resolved to protect those values. Recall how the events of 9-11 challenged our values and we had to fight the tendency to trade our freedoms for perceived security. And so it is today.

Let us honor those precious lives cut short in Tucson by praying for them and their families and by cherishing their memories. Let us pray for the full recovery of the wounded. And let us pray for our country. In times like this we need God’s guidance and the peace He provides. We need strength to not let the random acts of a criminal turn us against ourselves, or weaken our solid foundation, or provide a pretext to stifle debate

America must be stronger than the evil we saw displayed last week. We are better than the mindless finger-pointing we endured in the wake of the tragedy. We will come out of this stronger and more united in our desire to peacefully engage in the great debates of our time, to respectfully embrace our differences in a positive manner, and to unite in the knowledge that, though our ideas may be different, we must all strive for a better future for our country. May God bless America.

- Sarah Palin
As I said below, with all the one way fingerpointing at Sarah Palin and those on the right the real cause of the Arizona shooting goes unanswered. Worse still, this is a tragedy that may be repeated elsewhere if the current fingerpointing prevents us from helping others like Jared Loughner to get treatment and prevent future attacks.

Ex Congressman Who NOW Calls for Civility Guilty as Sin of Violent Speech

Democrats need to pass a law outlawing THEIR hate speech!

By now you may have heard of the effort underway by at least one House Democrat to pass a law banning certain types of political speech and "symbols" that might inspire an attacker like the Arizona shooter. The effort is unworkable and unconstitutional but when has that ever stopped the left?

Along those same lines and continuing with the theme that conservatives are somehow to blame for a "climate of hate" which led to the Arizona shooting, ex Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-Pa) who lost his seat in November's mid term election wrote an op-ed in the New York Times Tuesday in which he said:

"It is incumbent on all Americans to create an atmosphere of civility and respect in which political discourse can flow freely, without fear of violent confrontation."
Who can argue with that right? Except Mark Hemingway at the Washington Examiner points out:
According to the Scranton Times, Kanjorski said this about Florida's new Republican Governor Rick Scott on October 23:

"That Scott down there that's running for governor of Florida," Mr. Kanjorski said. "Instead of running for governor of Florida, they ought to have him and shoot him. Put him against the wall and shoot him. He stole billions of dollars from the United States government and he's running for governor of Florida. He's a millionaire and a billionaire. He's no hero. He's a damn crook. It's just we don't prosecute big crooks."
Take that "damn crook" out and "shoot him." If Rush Limbaugh or Sarah Palin had said that there would be hell to pay. Do you suppose that the new law Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.) to put a chill on so called dangerous rhetoric will include those of his former colleague?
And while we are at it, remember all the violent, hateful things the left said about President Bush? You suppose that will be considered dangerous under any new law or given the usual wink and a nod?

No new law or call for civility will address the fundamental underlying reason that Jared Loughner changed from a mild and caring boy into a monster that massacred so many in Tucson last Saturday. As I make clear in the post below, wouldn't it be better if we focused our energies on helping to treat those who need help before they become psychopathic killers? Or should be just continue with the blame game, talk about one sided civility and propose new laws to score cheap political points?

Bottom Line in Arizona Shooting: Government Failed in it's Responsibility to Prevent Tragedy

Some of the same people now pointing fingers of blame at Sarah  Palin and the right failed to take action which would have prevented attacks!

Let's cut to the chase here. Tougher gun laws would not have prevented Saturday's massacre in Arizona. Neither would limits placed on political discourse. What happened in Arizona is that one young man, Jared Loughner, began a long slow walk into severe mental illness and there is no evidence that anyone did anything to try and help him.

People Saw This Coming

It happened slowly. Friends in early years of high school describe a totally different Jared than the picture of the monster we see now. “I’ve always known him as the sweet, caring Jared,” says Kelsey Hawkes, now 21, who dated Jared briefly when she was a high school freshman and Jared was a sophomore. But looking back, another friend saw signs that something wasn't right.  “He’d say things and I’d be shocked — random words strung together about imagination, dream, consciousness," said former high school friend Zach Olser, 22 . "You’d try to figure out what he was saying.”

There's the report of his friend, Bryce Tierney, whose last contact with Jared was a voicemail message a few hours before he set off on his massacre. Tierney recalls Jared's increasingly bizarre behavior:
He also describes Loughner as being obsessed with "lucid dreaming"—that is, the idea that conscious dreams are an alternative reality that a person can inhabit and control—and says Loughner became "more interested in this world than our reality." Tierney adds, "I saw his dream journal once. That's the golden piece of evidence. You want to know what goes on in Jared Loughner's mind, there's a dream journal that will tell you everything."
Tierney also recalls how Jared developed what might have been an obsession with Congresswoman Giffords, who was terribly injured in the attack, after being disappointed with her answer at a Town Hall Meeting to his question: "What is government if words have no meaning?" This event took place in 2007 long before anyone had ever heard of Sarah Palin.

In the last two years Jared's increasingly bizarre behavior got him fired from a fast food job at Quiznos, and a volunteer dog walking job with the local animal shelter.

Summer of 2010 Jared attended Pima Community College. In math class "Mark DeBeliso, 19, says Loughner shouted out questions six or seven times during one 90-minute class. The outbursts focused on the apocalypse and death, DeBeliso says." Another student wrote a series of emails to a friend describing her concern from day one of the class. After two weeks with Jared in class she wrote the following on June 14:
'We have a mentally unstable person in the class that scares the living cr** out of me. He is one of those whose picture you see on the news, after he has come into class with an automatic weapon. Everyone interviewed would say, Yeah, he was in my math class and he was really weird. I sit by the door with my purse handy. If you see it on the news one night, know that I got out fast...'
Jared continued in the school until September 29th when campus officials became aware of a video he posted online claiming that the college was illegal under the Constitution. At that time two Pima College police officers visited Jared's home meeting with him and his parent's and delivering a letter requiring Jared to undergo a mental health evaluation before returning to school. He never went back.

Reports of Death Threats? Yet Shooter Was Able to Buy a Gun?

The same Sheriff Dupnik who has been so offensive and outspoken in blaming conservatives like Rush Limbaugh for the tragedy  admitted at a press conference that "As we understand it, there have been law enforcement contacts with the individual where he made threats to kill." Public records also show that Jared had other run ins with the law including a drug charge. Dupnik calls Rush's rhetoric "irresponsible" but what of Dupnik's conduct? Does he bear no responsibility for the failure to prevent this crime?

How is it that with all these warning signs that Jared was able to buy a gun? How sad it is that no one ever intervened to get Jared the help he so clearly needed. Why is it that so many pundits and politicians on the left spend so much time pointing fingers of blame at the right while ignoring the REAL problem?
 
The National Institutes of Health estimates that approximately 1.1% of Americans suffer from Schizophrenia, a severe brain disorder widely thought to be the cause of Jared Loughner's disturbed mind. Of course few who suffer this life altering disease will ever turn violent and commit mass murder. But shouldn't we invest our time and efforts into helping those who need treatment to get it? Wouldn't that be a better solution to this tragedy than playing the blame game or passing new laws that will do nothing to stop the next killer?
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