Tears flowed in the White House theater Tuesday night at the conclusion of "United 93," a movie about the plane that crashed in rural Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, 2001 after passengers fought back against their hijackers.
"It was a very emotional night," said White House press secretary Tony Snow, who watched the movie with President Bush and relatives of some of the 40 passengers and crew members portrayed in the film.
"It has a very powerful ending," Snow said Wednesday. "It's dead silence as the credits roll, and you had sounds of quiet sobbing in the room."
Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
LAS VEGAS - Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid said it's his official duty to attend boxing matches in Nevada and that he did nothing wrong when he accepted complimentary ringside seats from a state agency that was lobbying him.
"I would be criticized if I didn't go," Reid told reporters Tuesday after addressing a veterans group in Las Vegas. "It's just like going to an Ohio State football game, an Arizona State football game - in Nevada, boxing is it. I have an obligation to make sure boxing is conducted properly not only in Nevada but around the country."
William Jefferson (DEMOCRAT-LA), the Congressman caught on tape taking a $100,000 bribe must be kicking himself!
If he had only said it was part of his job to be taking bribes! He'd be off Scot free!
Hey... After Patrick Kennedy pulled that lame "I'm a Congressman! I'm late to a vote!" excuse after plowing his car into a Capitol Hill security barrier Reid obviously figures that anything goes... If you are a Democrat!
After all, this boxing ticket bribe is small potatoes when it comes to the millions of dollars that have gone from Nevada big business into the pocket of every male member of Reid's family. Just pass along this little chart to every moonbat who thinks that the "culture of corruption" is a Republican problem.
UPDATE: Reid "Misstated" Senate Ethics Rules, Will Now Decline Free Tickets
From the Associated Press:
Pssst. Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid. What happens in Vegas doesn't always stay in Vegas after all.
A day after The Associated Press reported Reid accepted free ringside seats to boxing matches from a Nevada agency trying to influence him on federal boxing legislation, the senator offered his own ethics justification to a home state audience in Las Vegas.
And he vowed to keep taking such gifts.
But Reid's comments Tuesday quickly reached Washington, where several ethics experts concluded the Senate leader had misstated the Senate rules to his constituents.
Within hours of being questioned by AP about the ethics experts' assertions, Reid's office abruptly reversed course and acknowledged Wednesday night he had misspoken about the ethics rules.
The Senate leader also has decided not to take free boxing seats in the future even though he still believes it was ethical to do so in 2004 and 2005, Reid's office said.
"In light of questions that have been raised about the practice, Sen. Reid will not accept these kinds of credentials in the future in order to avoid even the faintest appearance of impropriety," spokesman Jim Manley said.
So basically Reid has been doing the same thing for years and would have continued to do so had he not been caught.
That's Democrat ethics for you: Rules that the rest of us must follow, but the Dems always have an excuse.
But in perspective, Hilla is a witness to far greater tragedy than all the suicide attacks by desperate terrorists and Saddamite fanatics. The fact that so few died and so many lived is a testament to progress and VICTORY!
For decades, the horror of Saddam's brutality was inflicted on the resident's of Hilla in greater numbers and ferocity than any recent, desperate attempts by fanatics.
The mass graves at Hilla bear silent witness to that nightmare that seemed never ending. Fifteen thousand souls cry out for retribution. The only light of hope was the liberation of Iraq and justice carried to the perpetrators of this evil.
Desperate to avoid moral accountability, some opponents of the Iraq war, have claimed that the mass graves are nothing more than cemeteries. What cemetery buries children in trenches, each with a bullet to the back of the head?
As we leave our Memorial Day remembrance, let us not forget the sacrifice of so many Americans who gave their lives to end this horror. Freedom can never be assured if it is only for one race or people. If there is a moral law in this world, it is this adaptation of the Golden Rule: "To do all within the power of a nation or a people to save others from evil, as we would wish to be saved."
President George W. Bush shakes the hand of Henry Paulson after nominating him Tuesday, May 30, 2006, as Treasury Secretary to replace Secretary John Snow, right, who announced his resignation.
Secretary Snow led President Bush's efforts to restore America's economy since February 2003. During that time we added over five million new jobs, kept inflation in check despite high energy prices and most recently was at the forefront of successful efforts to extend tax cuts that continue to fuel our economic growth.
The media ignored much of these accomplishments, in the same way they fail to report any of the good things that are happening in Iraq.
But we here at Mike's America know that without the leadership and service of men like Snow, there would be no good news to report. Even if it never gets reported.
Monday, May 29, 2006
Above is "Tondelayo." (larger image here) Those who have seen the documentaries about the air war over Europe and Japan and on television may get a false impression of the size and capability of these planes which did so much to secure VICTORY in the Second World War.
Up close and personal you get a whole new understanding and appreciation for the crews, who suffered enormous losses over both Germany and Japan. These planes are TINY compared to the jets of today. And if you ever have the chance to climb aboard, you'll realize what a burden these small spaces were, even to the very fit and limber young crews of the day.
Here's a comparison between today's F-16 and a B-17.
Imagine being shot at by anti-aircraft guns and fighter planes while bouncing around in a tin can with narrow and constricted passageways. Getting out as the plane is spiraling towards earth after being damaged by enemy fire would be a horror.
It's a great testament to the courage and bravery of those who volunteered to risk their lives, and the many who lost theirs, that we succeeded in winning World War II, cementing at least for a time, a better prospect for peace.
It's also a tribute to the political leadership of both parties which realized that our technological leadership and progress was just as important as the spirit behind the men brave enough to fly such machines in the defense of freedom.
Sunday, May 28, 2006
Primarily a military remembrance, the holiday has widened in meaning to honor and memorialize law officers and others who do so much to protect our freedom and liberty both here at home and abroad.
In little more than a week we come upon the second anniversary of the passing of another of those historic figures who did so much to keep us safe: President Ronald Wilson Reagan.
(Large photo here.)
So, it's appropriate that I invite you to share this video and song reflection from the Reagan funeral service at the National Cathedral as a tribute to all those who have given their lives defending freedom.
The hymn "O Love of God How Strong and True" (words from the Cathedral bulletin) is based on an English hymn "Jerusalem" inspired by the poet William Blake. I prefer the Blake wording, especially the last two stanzas:
Bring me my Bow of burning gold:
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear! O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire.
I will not cease from Mental Fight,
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land.
The Greatest Memorialist: Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address
Perhaps more stirring even than the National Cathedral Choir are the simple, yet powerful words that Abraham Lincoln uttered to honor the fallen at the site of the battle of Gettysburg.
Students of history will recall that preceding Lincoln's Gettysburg Address delivered on November 19, 1863, distinguished politician and orator of the day, Edward Everett, spoke for two hours. Lincoln thought his short speech was not a worthy tribute, but the words continue to ring throughout our history:
The final paragraph:
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate - we can not consecrate - we can not hallow - this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us - that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion - that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain - that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom - and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
Saturday, May 27, 2006
The Daniel Chester French Victory atop the Memorial to the First Division of the Army, the Big Red One, outside the White House (monument details here). Readers will remember that Daniel French Smith also designed the sculpture of Abraham Lincoln in the Lincoln Memorial as well as other sculpture in DC and around the country (photo collection here).
As part of the Mike's America Memorial Day observance, a repeat of "Final Salute" the moving account of how Marines honor and remember their fallen and the ones left behind. Make sure to see the full photo presentation.
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
Thanks Special Agent Utah for posting this very sad account of the final journey home for 2nd Lt. Jim Cathey, a United States Marine, killed in Iraq. It's presented through the eyes of Major Steve Beck to whom the duty of Casualty Assistance Calls Officer has been given.
You'll be deeply touched by the extraordinary lengths to which these Marines go to honor and remember their fallen brothers and their continuing efforts to see that the family of the fallen hero is not forgotten after the funeral.
It's a sad story, but we can all be comforted knowing that the loses are so relatively few in comparison to other conflicts and still lower than the tragic deaths of September 11th. It's this sacrifice which secures our freedom and prevents future tragedy.
"Final Salute" was written by Jim Sheeler, of Rocky Mountain News, published November 9, 2005 (original text and photos here) won the Pulitizer Prize for both Feature Writing and Feature Photography.
The Rocky Mountain News has prepared an excellent and moving flash presentation of photographs and audio from this important story. While sad, it's also a story that makes you proud to live in a country with such devoted people. And let's never forget the sacrifice portrayed in this story by abandoning the mission for which they gave their lives.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, (1850?)
(Last Stanza. Full Poem Here)
Thou, too, sail on, O Ship of State!
Sail on, O Union, strong and great!
Humanity with all its fears,
With all the hopes of future years,
Is hanging breathless on the fate!
We know what Master laid the keel,
What Workmen wrought thy ribs of steel,
Who made each mast, and sail, and rope,
What anvils rang, what hammers beat,
In what forge and what a heat
Were shaped the anchors of thy hope!
Fear not each sudden sound and shock,
'Tis of the wave and not the rock;
'Tis but the flapping of the sail,
And not a rent made by the gale!
In spite of rock and tempest's roar,
In spite of false lights on the shore,
Sail on, nor fear to breast the sea!
Our hearts, our hopes, are all with thee,
Our hearts, our hopes, our prayers, our tears,
Our faith triumphant o'er our fears,
Are all with thee, are all with thee!
Friday, May 26, 2006
Well it's past time to put a cork in that whine and get on the victory train. The battle for congress is on and the stakes are too high to throw another advantage to the folks who would toss out what's left of our GOP platform their first day in power.
So suck it up and get on board for V I C T O R Y!
Point Five is calling the faithful home with his invitation to "Join the Victory Wing of the Republican Party."
Here's who's already on board:
Sign me up!
Thanks Assorted Babble for showing the way!
Thursday, May 25, 2006
Read it all here.
I have to share this paragraph:
If you want to find the cool, anti-establishment rebels who don't answer to "The Man" on college campuses today, you have to go to a meeting of the College Republicans. They are rebelling against at least 99 percent of their professors. Even the original '60s anti-war protesters were rebelling against at least 5 percent of their professors. Today's college liberals ape the beliefs of 99 percent of their professors and then pretend they're on-the-edge radicals.
The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday approved a plan to allow oil drilling in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.Democrats, immediately promised to filibuster against the often expressed will of the majority in the United States Senate.
The House voted 225-201 to approve a plan sponsored by California Republican Richard Pombo that would allow drilling on 2,000 acres of ANWR out of the refuge's total 19 million acres.
It was the 12th vote on the divisive ANWR drilling issue since 1995 in the House. The ANWR drilling plan faces a nearly certain filibuster threat in the Senate, where pro-drilling Republicans hold a slimmer majority.
Tapping the 10 billion barrels of crude estimated to lay beneath the refuge is a key part of the Bush administration's national energy plan to reduce U.S. reliance on petroleum imports, which now comprise about 60 percent of U.S. supplies.
"Had President Clinton not vetoed the ANWR drilling bill in 1995, we would have at least an additional 1 million barrels a day of domestic oil production .... today," U.S. Energy Secretary Sam Bodman said.
Apparently, Democrats seem to think that complaining about problems, like high gas prices and dependence of foreign oil, is easier than working for environmentally friendly solutions.
More info on oil, energy and ANWR in the Mike's America April 29th post.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
IN the debate over immigration, "amnesty" has become something of a dirty word. Some opponents of the immigration bill being debated in the Senate assert that it would grant amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants. Supporters claim it would do no such thing. Instead, they say, it lays out a road map by which illegal aliens can earn citizenship.
Perhaps I can shed some light. Two decades ago, while serving as attorney general under President Ronald Reagan, I was in the thick of things as Congress debated the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. The situation today bears uncanny similarities to what we went through then.
In the mid-80's, many members of Congress — pushed by the Democratic majority in the House and the Select Commission on Immigration and Refugee Policy — advocated amnesty for long-settled illegal immigrants. President Reagan considered it reasonable to adjust the status of what was then a relatively small population, and I supported his decision.
In exchange for allowing aliens to stay, he decided, border security and enforcement of immigration laws would be greatly strengthened — in particular, through sanctions against employers who hired illegal immigrants. If jobs were the attraction for illegal immigrants, then cutting off that option was crucial.
Beyond this, most illegal immigrants who could establish that they had resided in America continuously for five years would be granted temporary resident status, which could be upgraded to permanent residency after 18 months and, after another five years, to citizenship.
Note that this path to citizenship was not automatic. Indeed, the legislation stipulated several conditions: immigrants had to pay application fees, learn to speak English, understand American civics, pass a medical exam and register for military selective service. Those with convictions for a felony or three misdemeanors were ineligible. Sound familiar? These are pretty much the same provisions included in the new Senate proposal and cited by its supporters as proof that they have eschewed amnesty in favor of earned citizenship.
The difference is that President Reagan called this what it was: amnesty. Indeed, look up the term "amnesty" in Black's Law Dictionary, and you'll find it says, "the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act provided amnesty for undocumented aliens already in the country."
Like the amnesty bill of 1986, the current Senate proposal would place those who have resided illegally in the United States on a path to citizenship, provided they meet a similar set of conditions and pay a fine and back taxes. The illegal immigrant does not go to the back of the line but gets immediate legalized status, while law-abiding applicants wait in their home countries for years to even get here. And that's the line that counts. In the end, slight differences in process do not change the overriding fact that the 1986 law and today's bill are both amnesties.
There is a practical problem as well: the 1986 act did not solve our illegal immigration problem. From the start, there was widespread document fraud by applicants. Unsurprisingly, the number of people applying for amnesty far exceeded projections. And there proved to be a failure of political will in enforcing new laws against employers.
After a six-month slowdown that followed passage of the legislation, illegal immigration returned to normal levels and continued unabated. Ultimately, some 2.7 million people were granted amnesty, and many who were not stayed anyway, forming the nucleus of today's unauthorized population.
So here we are, 20 years later, having much the same debate and being offered much the same deal in exchange for promises largely dependent on the will of future Congresses and presidents.
Will history repeat itself? I hope not. In the post-9/11 world, secure borders are vital. We have new tools — like biometric technology for identification, and cameras, sensors and satellites to monitor the border — that make enforcement and verification less onerous. And we can learn from the failed policies of the past.
President Bush and Congress would do better to start with securing the border and strengthening enforcement of existing immigration laws. We might also try improving on Ronald Reagan's idea of a pilot program for genuinely temporary workers.
The fair and sound policy is to give those who are here illegally the opportunity to correct their status by returning to their country of origin and getting in line with everyone else. This, along with serious enforcement and control of the illegal inflow at the border — a combination of incentives and disincentives — will significantly reduce over time our population of illegal immigrants.
America welcomes more immigrants than any other country. But in keeping open that door of opportunity, we also must uphold the rule of law and enhance a fair immigration process, as Ronald Reagan said, to "humanely regain control of our borders and thereby preserve the value of one of the most sacred possessions of our people: American citizenship."
Edwin Meese III, a fellow at the Heritage Foundation, was the attorney general of the United States from 1985 to 1988.
The question that has NEVER been answered in this debate on immigration reform is: What do you do with the illegals that do NOT comply with requirements necessary to stay here legally???
Are we going to wake up in another 20 years and realize that instead of dealing with 12 million illegals we now have 50 million?
Border Security and workplace enforcement FIRST! When the government proves they can do that, then let's talk about the status of those still here illegally.
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Take a look at the web site promoting the film. The word "truth" is mentioned five times on the front page.
A note of warning: when lefties begin using the word "truth" expect a con job.
For example, when discredited Ambassador Joe Wilson wrote "The Politics of Truth" about the only thing in the book that wasn't a lie was his name on the front cover.
Here at Mike's America we've often discussed global warming. A good wrap up of the issue can be found in one of the lastests posts here.
The bottom line is that we may very well be experiencing a period of global warming. But it's the SUN that is causing it on earth, just as the Sun is causing increased warming on Mars.
Just as some have falsely accused advocates of a strong immigration policy of being against immigrants, because we object to ILLEGAL immigrants, there are those who are trying to force the view that any global warming is the result of man's activity on the planet.
As one who worked for the United States Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, I saw firsthand how dedicated many public servants and advocacy groups are to insuring sensible environmental policies.
But I also saw firsthand how a significant sector of the so-called environmental movement is a figleaf for promoting ant-Western, anti-capitalist programs advocated by socialists looking to use environmental issues to support a broader, unspoken political agenda.
You only need ask why China and India and many countries of the developing world were exempted from the Kyoto Protocols, viewed by the left as absolutely essential to control global warming, to understand my point.
Monday, May 22, 2006
Judge Revokes Bail For Saudi Bus Riders
PC Free Zone has a post with the photos of the two Saudi joy riders.
UPDATE: Foreigners Cleared In Bus Scare :
From Tampa Bay Online: Two Saudi men jailed last week after being accused of boarding a school bus and riding to a New Tampa high school could be released as early as today after federal and local authorities determined the pair are in this country legally and are not a security risk.
Mana Saleh Almanajam, 23, and Shaker Mohsen Alsidran, 20, were charged with trespassing on school property Friday. A day after their arrest, the $250 bail was revoked by a judge to give Immigration and Customs Enforcement time to investigate the two men.
Monday, ICE Special Agent in Charge Robert Weber said investigators found Almanajam and Alsidran are here legally on student visas and that immigration holds would not be imposed.
"In a nutshell," he said, "we determined what their status was and that it did not require any immigration detention. They are not here illegally."
The two University of South Florida students, enrolled in the English Language Institute, were held in isolation at Orient Road Jail, said sheriff's spokesman J.D. Callaway, "for everybody's safety."
He said detectives over the weekend concluded the men meant no harm when they boarded a school bus at Fletcher Avenue and 42nd Street early Friday morning.
"We determined that they were apparently just confused," Callaway said. "There is nothing else to lead us to file more criminal charges."
The men raised concerns among the students on the bus when they began speaking in Arabic. The bus driver, a substitute, called ahead, and deputies met the bus at Wharton High School and arrested both men.
Initially they lied about their home country, saying they were from Morocco, Callaway said. They then gave different stories as to why they got on the bus, he said.
Ahmed Bedier, Tampa director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said the misunderstanding was the result of cultural differences and language barriers and that local authorities overreacted when they jailed the men and revoked their bail.
Monday, Bedier visited the men and said their conflicting stories were the result of a lack of ability to communicate.
"The whole reason they got on the bus was because they wanted to go [to] the school," Bedier said. "They had some time on their hands, and they like to look around the city. They don't have their own transportation, and they saw the bus stop and thought there would be no harm in riding the bus.
"I explained to them about the yellow buses being exclusively for students of public schools," Bedier said, "and they responded that, 'We are students attending a public school.'"
He said both men "are very confused; there's a great deal of anxiety on their part. Nobody explained to them in their native language what was going on. They were in the dark as to why they were in jail."
School security officials are weighing the possibility of picture identification cards for students and more training for parents, students and bus drivers.
"The bus driver did the right thing," Hillsborough County school district spokeswoman Linda Cobbe said. "She was a sub, but she called into the school that there was a disturbance on the bus. Drivers are trained to notice suspicious objects and people and also get to know kids on the bus."
Because the driver was a substitute, Cobbe said, "she didn't know any of the kids on the bus."
Almanajam and Alsidran didn't look out of place at first, she said, but when they didn't speak the language, the students brought it to the driver's attention.
As a reminder of why school security in an age of terrorism is so very important, you need only recall the tragedy at the school in Beslan Russia. WARNING: graphics presented in this web documentary are very disturbing. Those children didn't die because George Bush invaded Iraq or supported Israel, yet Muslim fanatics viewed them as legitimage targets.
I would hate to think that the political correctness and multiculturalism which is destroying so much of public education would also undermine our ability to be effective in preventing a tragedy like Beslan from occurring in this country.
Too many school officials seem intent to suspend students who draw a picture of a gun, or accidentally bring a butter knife to school. Yet, what are they doing to address the vulnerabilities suggested by the events in Florida?
Sunday, May 21, 2006
This may be the one time where "fake but accurate" is valid as a journalistic tool. But it's still too soon to condemn the story as false, as many of the head in the sand ostriches on the left prefer to do.
Well, looks like good intentions don't count for much in a Middle East long wracked by tribal and sectarian strife. Now, there's talk of a civil war between the PLO and Hamas.
From the Associated Press:
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip - Palestinian security foiled the second attempt in two days to kill top commanders loyal to President Mahmoud Abbas in what officials in his Fatah party said Sunday was a "clear conspiracy" against their leaders.For all the liberal catterwalling about Iraq, at least it has a new government founded on the principles of democracy and peace. The same cannot be said for Palestine.
Gaza security chief Rashid Abu Shbak, a central figure in the power struggle, was the target of an attempted bombing Sunday, security officials said.
The discovery came a day after Abbas‘ intelligence chief, Tareq Abu Rajab, was seriously wounded and one of his bodyguards was killed when a bomb loaded with metal pellets ripped through an elevator shaft in his Gaza headquarters.
Abbas, a political moderate, was elected in separate presidential elections last year and wields significant authority, including formal control over some security forces.
"Civil war is the red line that nobody dares cross, no matter which side they are on ... Civil war is forbidden," Abbas said on the sidelines of a World Economic Forum meeting in the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik.
The 3,000-member Hamas militia was deployed for the first time last week, despite orders from Abbas not to form the unit. In response, forces loyal to Abbas came out in large numbers.
Fatah officials suspect Hamas was behind both incidents over the weekend but have stopped short of openly accusing the militant group of involvement.
Friday, May 19, 2006
Oh, while we are at it, the Euro News, a FRENCH online publication, might want to resist using the infamous photo from the frat party at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq when it does a story on Guantanamo. First of all, it's a glaring factual error. Second, if you want to compare Guantanamo Bay to jails in France, then BRING IT ON.
Last October, the European Council's commissioner on human rights described the jails in France' Palais de Justice as the "worst he has ever seen...squalid and inhumane...dungeons...It is incredible that people are imprisoned in such conditions, without ventilation and without natural light. I have never seen a worse prison."
The palais is situated on the beautiful L'île de la Cité, a few hundred yards from Notre Dame cathedral. But in its "dépôt", human rights organisations have uncovered evidence of prisoners, mainly illegal immigrants, going without food, drink and lavatory paper as they huddle together for warmth. There have been numerous violent attacks and cases of detainees mutilating themselves and smearing their blood on the walls.Compared to this, Guantanamo is a holiday camp! And yet the UN and pompous posers on human rights seem content to concentrate all their energy on the U.S.
Melanie Phillips has a book coming out titled "Londonistan" that describes the problem of Muslim immigration and lack of assimilation by members of that group in the United Kingdom. There are definite parallels to what we witness in the enclaves of radical Islam in the United States (see map here).
Ms. Phillips (her blog) gave an extensive interview to Front Page Magazine:
FP: So what inspired you to write Londonistan?And if you would like more information on the 21st Century version of the Muslim Crusade, Committees of Correspondence has a great historical review.
Phillips: I was just appalled by the fact that, not only had Britain become the key European hub of Islamist extremism and terrorism during the 1990s under the noses of the British authorities, but even after both 9/11 and last year’s suicide bombings in London the British political and security establishment is still appeasing Islamist extremism, and remains in a state of denial about the threat to the west. After the London bombings, when home-grown British Muslim boys set out to murder as many of their fellow British citizens as possible, a senior London police officer went on TV and said that the words Islam and terrorism did not go together. If a threat is so badly misunderstood in this way, it will not be defeated.
FP: Can you talk a little bit about the collapse of traditional British identity and of the destructiveness of multiculturalism?
Phillips: This is absolutely a key issue. Multiculturalism has turned Britain’s values inside out – and the root cause of the problem is the deconstruction of Britain’s identity. For decades, the British elite has been consumed by loathing of its national identity and values which it decided were racist, authoritarian and generally disagreeable. Much of that was due to our old friend, post-colonial guilt. The elite was therefore vulnerable to the predations of the left, which had signed up to Gramsci’s insight that a society could be suborned by replacing its normative values by the mores of those who transgressed them or were on society’s margins.
This gave rise to multiculturalism and minority rights, which held that all cultures were equal to each other and which thus provided minorities with an enormous weapon with which to force the majority to give in to their demands. One of the consequences of this was moral inversion, which holds that since minorities are weak they must always be victims of the majority because it is strong. So even when minorities behave badly, it’s always the majority’s fault. Translate that onto the world stage, and you arrive at the view that even when third world people commit terrorist outrages against the west it must be the west which is to blame. That’s why multicultural Britain said, after 9/11, that America ‘had it coming to them’ – and why, after the London bombings last July, it said the reason British Muslim boys had blown up the London transit system was because of Britain’s support for the US in Iraq.
FP: Describe for us Britain’s culture of appeasement. What do you think engendered it?
Phillips: Various factors. First, the kind of moral inversion and cultural slide I’ve just been talking about. Next, sheer funk. Then there’s Britain’s deep reluctance – which it shares with the US – to get stuck into issues of religion. It’s a kind of fastidiousness that religion represents private space into which a liberal society should not intrude –which is fine, all other things being equal, but which of course here they are not.
On top of that, Britain – like so much of Europe – has signed up to the idea that the nation is a Bad Thing because it does war – and war must be avoided at all costs. So war must be replaced by law, the authority of the nation must yield to supra-national institutions – hence the obsession with getting the approval of the UN, which is in the fact the world’s Club of Terror -- and confrontation must be replaced by concessions.
Finally, don’t forget that before a certain Winston Churchill came along and inspired the ‘bulldog breed’ who stoically endured the Blitz and saw off Hitler,
Britain in the 1930s was cheering to the echo Neville Chamberlain’s ‘peace in our time’. There is an insularity to the British that leads them to think that, provided they don’t upset anyone beyond their island fastness, nasty people in far-away places will leave them alone. And besides, the British ruling class have always done appeasement. Think of their betrayal of the Jews and kowtowing to the Arabs in Mandatory Palestine; think of Aden, Malaya, Northern Ireland.
FP: What is your perspective of the alliance of the Left and radical Islamism?
Phillips: It’s remarkable, to put it mildly, that the left – with its obsessions with issues like gay rights, equality for women and sexual licence – should have forged an alliance with radical Islamists who preach death to gays, the subjugation of women and the stoning of adulterers. It is an eye-opener to see, on the streets of London, so-called ‘progressives’ marching shoulder to shoulder with radical Islamists under the metaphorical banner of human rights and the literal banners of Hamas. Both the left and the radical Islamists have put aside their differences because they recognise the value of using each other in pursuit of their common objective, the destruction of western society.
In other, less topsy-turvy times, the rest of the country would have raised an eyebrow at such an alliance and at the noxious views it is spewing out, which in turn so closely reflect the views of neo-fascist groups and white supremacists: hatred of Israel, Judeophobic tropes about a global Jewish conspiracy that endangers the world, loathing of capitalism and America. But alas, such is the extent of Britain’s moral and cultural slide, and so poisonous has been the effect of the opposition to the war in Iraq, that far from being denounced such views are finding expression in mainstream society and public debate.
FP: What is your view of the New Anti-Semitism?
Phillips: It’s currently open season in Britain on Israel and the Jews. People put Israel in one box and anti-Jewish prejudice in another, and resolutely deny any connection between the two. But the Israel issue is being used as a camouflage for Judeophobia. Much of the problem is gross ignorance. Many in Britain are wholly ignorant of the history of the Jews and of the restoration of their ancient homeland in Israel, and as such have come to believe that the propaganda put out by the Arabs, which so grievously misrepresents and distorts both the history and the present situation of the Middle East, is true. With so many in the intelligentsia and the media deeply hostile and ignorant, Israel has been successfully demonised and delegitimised in Britain on the basis of lies and libels, a treatment afforded to no other nation.
And this has in turn legitimised open anti-Jewish feeling and the expression of anti-Jewish tropes, such as sinister global Jewish power. Even more startling, Jews who try to defend Israel from such calumnies and moral inversion are accused of having ‘dual loyalty’. In other words, their British identity is conditional upon their expressing the approved view of a foreign conflict in which Britain has no locus. No other minority is subjected to such treatment. The final twist is that some of the principal cheerleaders of this anti-Jewish bigotry are themselves of Jewish ancestry, a particular Jewish pathology which goes back to the ‘conversos’ of the Middle Ages.
This is a tragedy for Britain’s Jews. But it is also a tragedy for Britain, because its failure to grasp that Israel’s fight is the west’s own fight, that Israel is not in a separate box labelled ‘land dispute’ but is in the same box that the west is in which is labelled ‘jihad against the free world’, and that the hatred of the Jews that is central to the Arab and Muslim world is at the very heart of the jihad against the west, is undermining its own ability to defend itself against that threat.
FP: The British government has a current strategy of getting into bed with radical Islamism. Why? How much should this matter to the US? What should be done about it?
Phillips: The British establishment, as I have said, has a historic proclivity towards appeasement. It takes the cynical view that there is no group in the world whom it cannot buy off one way or another. In addition, it has an absolute blind spot about religious fanaticism. It refuses to acknowledge the religious nature of Islamic fascism -- maybe because to do so would mean facing up to horrendous challenges, or maybe because the British elite simply cannot take seriously something that sounds to its super-sophisticated ears so absurd as the restoration of the medieval Caliphate and the Islamisation of the world. It thinks therefore it is using Islamist radicals to see off the threat of terrorism, but in fact it is being used by them.
Yes, this should matter to the US for a number of reasons. First, it might imperil Britain’s alliance with the US. After Tony Blair departs from the Prime Ministerial stage, his successor may well want to distance Britain from the US and its proactive defence of the west. Second, some of these destructive British social trends – such as the obsession with minority rights – are present in the US too. If Britain succumbs, these forces in the US will be strengthened. Britain after all is the American cultural mother-ship; it is where the concepts of liberty, democracy and the rule of law were first developed. If Britain turns out all its cultural lights, the resulting gloom will envelop America and the whole of the free world.
With leftist idiots screaming "Bush=Hitler" the real nature of the evil Nazi regime has become a tad muddled. But anyone who has visited a Nazi death camp or knows their history will recall that the Nazi law requiring Jews to wear a Star of David sewn into their clothes was the beginning of a nightmare that eventually led to the deaths of nearly sixty million people in World War II.
So when word comes that Iran is set to pass a law requiring non-Muslims to wear identifying clothing or insignia, those who understand the significance of the move take notice.
This from Canada.Com:
Human rights groups are raising alarms over a new law passed by the Iranian parliament that would require the country's Jews and Christians to wear coloured badges to identify them and other religious minorities as non-Muslims.UPDATE: Well folks, Iran has denied the story is true and lefties are all in a lather demanding we retract the story. Of course Iran has also denied any interest in developing nuclear weapons, yet has installed nuclear processing equipment that has no civilian use.
"This is reminiscent of the Holocaust," said Rabbi Marvin Hier, the dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles. "Iran is moving closer and closer to the ideology of the Nazis."
Iranian expatriates living in Canada yesterday confirmed reports that the Iranian parliament, called the Islamic Majlis, passed a law this week setting a dress code for all Iranians, requiring them to wear almost identical "standard Islamic garments."
The law, which must still be approved by Iran's "Supreme Guide" Ali Khamenehi before being put into effect, also establishes special insignia to be worn by non-Muslims.
Iran's roughly 25,000 Jews would have to sew a yellow strip of cloth on the front of their clothes, while Christians would wear red badges and Zoroastrians would be forced to wear blue cloth.
Iran IS working on a new dress code. And whether or not they intend to require non-Muslims to wear identity badges, let's apply the lefty standard of the "seriousness of the charge" until we get more facts.
You know we slammed the lefties pretty hard for the CBS "fake but accurate" story on President Bush's National Guard service which miraculously appeared scant weeks before the 2004 election. But it was a story based on fake documents AND false assumptions (Bush family influence, special treatment, etc.).
In the case of Iran, we have the words of the Iranian President who can't go more than a day or two without threatening to destroy Israel, or war with the West.
As usual, our lefty pals are eager to gloss over this larger reality and go down the peace at any price road with Iran the same way they did with Nazi Germany. Sixty million people died in a conflict that could have been easily prevented (see post: Can't See the Forest for the Trees...).
After World War II, the victorious nations gathered and swore an oath: "NEVER AGAIN" which is etched in stone at the monument I viewed at Dachau, the first German Concentrataion Camp (post here). And yet here we are again, in a time when another nightmare could be prevented with relatively minimal effort compared to the horror of losing tens of millions in a nuclear exchange.
And again, those on the left, who claimed to be all concerned about the threat of nuclear war between the U.S. and the Soviets in the 20th Century seem less than concerned about a nuclear threat posed by a certifiably irrational leader in Iran.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
It's all part of the deal where Libya agreed to give up it's weapons of mass destruction program and allow the U.S. and U.K. to dismantle and remove all facilities and plans.
Judith Miller (jailed for refusing to give up her source in the Valerie Plame phony leak case) writes this in depth two part series describing the behind the scenes moves which made the destruction of Libyan WMD capabilities possible.
If you like long behind the scenes reads of how these major goals get accomplished, you will enjoy this one.
The bottom line is that Libya had what it needed to make one 10 kiloton weapon and was poised to begin production of up to ten per year.
The inspection team returned in December 2003, with even greater access. They were astonished by what they learned during their visits to weapons sites, labs and dual-use and military facilities. Although Libya claimed that it had no biological or germ-weapons-related facilities, and that its chemical capabilities were less than the CIA had feared, U.S. intelligence had underestimated Libya's nuclear progress.The factors which brought Libya to renounce WMD's and allow full western access for their removal was the combination of diplomacy and the very real threat of military force.
The Libyan decision has also borne other fruit by providing a bonanza of intelligence into the workings of the shadowy network of nuclear smuggling and proliferation.
But as far as using the Libyan example as a model for handling Iran, the model weakens. Compared to the messianic lunacy of Iran's leadership, Libyan leader, Moammar al-Gadhafi, is relatively sane. Gadhafi already had a taste of U.S. military power in the raid on Tripoli ordered by President Reagan in 1986 in retaliation for Libya's role in the bombing of a Berlin disco. He learned his lesson the hard way.
(See President Bush inspect the Libyan WMD program equipment at Oak Ridge, Tennessee here).
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
The Heritage Foundation, a right of center Washington think tank, has a study showing that the Senate "compromise" bill may allow up to 100 million new immigrants over the next 20 year.
Senator Jeff Sessions, (R-AL) makes a similar warning:
“Until now, most of us have focused on securing the border and deciding how to treat the illegal alien population already in the United States,” Sessions said. “Few, if any, of us have looked ahead to see what the long-term numerical impact of the bill would be. My staff and I have just completed such a study, and the results are shocking.”Read the rest here.
I hope that Senator Sessions is succesful in putting the issue before the Senate for full consideration before any vote is taken.
The five points he laid out are excellent starting points for advancing the need for border security, immigration control and immigrant assimilation.
From the White House Transcript of the President's address:
- First, the United States must secure its borders....6,000 Guard members will be deployed to our southern border.... increase federal funding for state and local authorities assisting the Border Patrol on targeted enforcement missions. We will give state and local authorities the specialized training they need to help federal officers apprehend and detain illegal immigrants.
- Second, to secure our border, we must create a temporary worker program....that would create a legal path for foreign workers to enter our country in an orderly way, for a limited period of time. This program would match willing foreign workers with willing American employers for jobs Americans are not doing. Every worker who applies for the program would be required to pass criminal background checks. And temporary workers must return to their home country at the conclusion of their stay.
- Third, we need to hold employers to account for the workers they hire...comprehensive immigration reform must include a better system for verifying documents and work eligibility. A key part of that system should be a new identification card for every legal foreign worker. This card should use biometric technology, such as digital fingerprints, to make it tamper-proof. A tamper-proof card would help us enforce the law, and leave employers with no excuse for violating it. And by making it harder for illegal immigrants to find work in our country, we would discourage people from crossing the border illegally in the first place.
- Fourth, we must face the reality that millions of illegal immigrants are here already. They should not be given an automatic path to citizenship. This is amnesty, and I oppose it....I believe that illegal immigrants who have roots in our country and want to stay should have to pay a meaningful penalty for breaking the law, to pay their taxes, to learn English, and to work in a job for a number of years. People who meet these conditions should be able to apply for citizenship.
- Fifth, we must honor the great American tradition of the melting pot, which has made us one nation out of many peoples. The success of our country depends upon helping newcomers assimilate into our society, and embrace our common identity as Americans. Americans are bound together by our shared ideals, an appreciation of our history, respect for the flag we fly, and an ability to speak and write the English language. English is also the key to unlocking the opportunity of America. English allows newcomers to go from picking crops to opening a grocery, from cleaning offices to running offices, from a life of low-paying jobs to a diploma, a career, and a home of their own. When immigrants assimilate and advance in our society, they realize their dreams, they renew our spirit, and they add to the unity of America.
Put me on record as being underwhelmed by point four which legitimizes illegals who have been in this country for a number of years. Yes, if they WANT to assimilate, I welcome them. But if they choose to ignore this opportunity, what mechanism is there to return them to their country of origin? That question seems to be routinely ignored in this entire debate.
As for point five, wouldn't it be great if we still had an education system in this country that taught what it was required to BE an American instead of how to protest America? The liberal desire to promote multiculturalism has destroyed the public education systems prior focus on assimilating new citizens AS AMERICANS. See the research on that and the rest of the assimilation fantasy here.
As for the other points, all fine. As long as a guest worker program requires those who wish to participate apply from their home country, are not permitted to bring their family here and enforcement is applied to make sure they return.
Growing up as a child in Ohio, I recall the "migrant workers" who visited our community every fall to pick tomatoes in the field that went into the Heinz Ketchup plant in town (that was before the Heinz Company was hijacked by the whacked out Teresa H. Kerry). They lived in small cabins at the farm and returned to wherever after the tomatoes were picked.
The bottom line: I didn't expect a firebrand conservative conversion from President Bush's speech last night and I was not disappointed. Now, let the Senate pass their bill and let the House knock some common sense into a final product. Or do as Congressmen Peter King and Tom Tancredo have said: get the border security now and sit on the rest until it is done right.
Monday, May 15, 2006
ROVE:Look, we're in a sour time. I readily admit it.
I mean, being in the middle of a war where people turn on their television sets and see brave men and women dying is not something that makes people happy and optimistic and upbeat.
But I'm absolutely confident that -- I heard this same kind of language about the 2004 elections in roughly the March, April, May, June period of June 2004.
We're going to be just fine in the fall elections.
And we're going to be fine because we stand for things that are important. We stand for strong natural defense abroad and complete victory in the war on terrorism which involves victory in Iraq.
We stand for a strong national defense. We stand for economic policies that are pro-growth, involving tax cuts and free trade. We are strongly for fiscal restraint in the budget process.
And our opponents, at this point, stand for little or nothing, except mere obstructionism. Whether it is the nomination of superbly qualified men and women to the judiciary, or our policies to reauthorize the Patriot Act to keep America safe in a time of global terror, the other party seems to stand for little except obstructionism.
And ultimately, the American people are a center-right country, who, presented with a center-right party with center-right candidates, will vote center-right.
And a reminder to all those who haven't heard what the Administration IS doing about the immigration problem:
ROVE: Most people don't understand that we're doing a heck of a lot better job of getting control of the border. This year, the average day this year, we have apprehended and returned over 4,200 people each and every day this year. There have been 6 million people who have been apprehended and removed from the country since 2001.
This year, it's 4,200 people a day. That is a thousand people a day more this year than last year.
Still, no mention of what will happen if all the above conditions are not met by the illegals who fail to comply with this amnesty by another name.
April 26, 2006
Thank you for taking the time to contact me with your concerns regarding guestworker programs and amnesty for illegal immigrants. I appreciate the opportunity to hear from you.
I believe the first issue to address in immigration reform is border security. Without strong physical border security no reform will be successful in stopping the flood of illegal crossings. The porous nature of our border does not just pose immigration problems, but national security ones as well. I believe that we need to make greater investments in the technology used to control our borders. By increasing the use of resources such as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), manned aerial assets,
Remote Video Surveillance camera systems, and next-generation detection technologies, we will be better equipped to secure the perimeters of the United States.
In order to mend our broken immigration system, I supported the Senate compromise bill. I believe that this proposal provides the essential framework for a problem that has been neglected for too long, and was disappointed when the agreement fell apart due to the obstruction of Democratic leadership. This proposal includes provisions to double the size of the Border Patrol by adding 12,000 new agents, adding 5,000 investigators to enhance Interior enforcement, and increasing DHS resources for transporting aliens. This proposal also contains plans to create a "virtual fence," construct new roads and vehicle barriers, provide additional border fences at vulnerable spots, and establish new highway checkpoints. If passed, this bill will also set new criminal penalties for actions related to tunnels, evading immigration officers, or engaging in financial transactions related to money laundering and smuggling of immigration documents.
I have also supported legislation aimed at comprehensively addressing the legacy of decades of weak border enforcement. We currently have between 10 and 12 million undocumented immigrants living in the country and working for businesses that cannot find the laborers they need. Since our current system provides so few legal channels for foreign workers, it all but guarantees laws will be broken and forces entire industries to operate in the shadows. We must address the practical nature of the problem and provide a realistic approach to dealing with the current illegal population in our country.
The legislation I support would be a plea bargain with the immigrants who broke the law. Under the terms of this plea they would be put on probation for 11 years. During this time the immigrants would have to under go two background checks, pay $2,000 in fines, remain employed, pay all back taxes, learn English, take civics classes, and stay out of trouble with the law. Failure to meet these probationary requirements would result in deportation. I believe this process not only punishes those who broke the law in a fair manner, but also ensures that employers who can't find willing American workers will be able to hire the workers they need to keep our economy going strong.
Enforcing current immigration law, enhancing border security, and improving identification standards are important parts of ensuring the integrity of our country's laws and economy. Resolving these concerns and others will take a bipartisan effort in Congress, and I am committed to working with my fellow Senators to ensure that we protect our national security.
Again, thank you for contacting me. If I may ever be of assistance to you or your family, please do not hesitate to call on me.
Lindsey 0. Graham
United States Senator
My letter to Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC):
Dear Senator Graham:
I’ve heard your defense of the McCain-Kennedy Immigration Bill on multiple news programs and talk shows . I am sorry that I cannot share with you any enthusiasm for this legislation which fails to address a host of issues which have recently become vital to our national security and national unity.
President Vicente Fox of Mexico spoke at the Cancun Summit and described Mexican immigration as a “human rights” issue. That may be true. Mexico is consistently violating the human rights of the mostly illiterate, indigenous peoples that are actively being “encouraged” to leave Mexico and go to the United States.
In "Reframing Mexican Migration As a Multi-Ethnic Process", Jonathan Fox of the University of California, Santa Cruz describes Mexico’s abandonment of rural agricultural programs and the effort to shift the indigineous populations of Indian ethnicity either to Mexican cities or the United States. The United Nations Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination concluded it’s most recent session in March by condemning Mexico for using forced sterilizations against these same peoples.
What we are witnessing is a sanitized version of Soviet-style collectivization and ethnic cleansing. Mexico is dumping into the United States an underclass of what Mexican elites view as undesireables. The bonus for Mexico is that they will no longer be a drain on Mexico’s social services, nor will they agitate for change in the corrupt Mexican system that leaves that nation unable to offer these poorest of the poor much hope for their future.
Meanwhile, the bill you support in the Senate indulges in a fantasy of transforming this growing underclass of illegal aliens by assimilation. That might have worked decades ago when we had a public school system that promoted the idea of an American identity. But as you are no doubt aware, the multicultural crowd is in charge of public education today.
Mark Krikorian, Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies in a 1997 piece titled "Will Americanization Work in America?" describes a study by Sociologist Ruben Rumbaut which surveyed students in San Diego who are children of immigrants or who immigrated themselves at a very young age:In terms of ethnic self-identification, the change was dramatic. Three years of high school caused these students to see themselves as significantly less American; there was a 50 percent drop in the proportion (already small) of those who considered themselves simply "American," a 30 percent drop in the proportion of those considering themselves hyphenated Americans, and a 52 percent increase in the proportion of those describing themselves exclusively by national origin.
Furthermore, there is a profound reluctance by many immigrants towards assimilation or learning English. In 1998, the Washington Post ran a series of articles on the immigration problem. The third article in that series "Immigrants Shunning Idea of Assimilation" reports the experience of Maria Jacinto, who became a U.S. citizen, but like other members of her family living in Omaha, Nebraska she does not speak English, nor considers herself an American: "I think I'm still a Mexican," she says. "When my skin turns white and my hair turns blonde, then I'll be an American."
The McCain-Kennedy bill, and your public support for it place a high value on these immigrants learning English. Yet come down to Southern Beaufort County sometime. I’ll take you to visit neighborhoods where these aliens can live their entire lives without using English. And many do not want to learn, or are not capable of learning.
What will you do when the time for these folks to assimilate has come and gone? Will we round up every single one who cannot speak our language? You know the answer to that as well as I do. The McCain-Kennedy Bill will have legitimized a new underclass of mostly illiterate foreigners living in this country unable to speak our language and with absolutely no allegiance to our history or ideals.
The time for half-measures is past. As President Bush has requested, we need a truly comprehensive bill on immigration that solves the security and cultural problem, not just the employment problem for meat processing plants and landscape companies.
After your stalwart support of Justice Alito during his confirmation hearings, I was prepared to forgive you for joining the anti-constitutional “gang of 14.” However, your failure to recognize the national security and cultural cultural issues that are of such great concern to the citizens of our state makes me wonder about your commitment to represent South Carolina values in the United States Senate.
Hilton Head Island, SC
P.S. I am posting this letter on my blog http://mikesamerica.blogspot.com. I will be happy to post your reply provided you can personally assure me in the letter that your staff prepares as a response, that YOU have in fact read mine.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
The wrenching emotional experience that others have described came to me in bits and pieces. Sometimes just the tone of voice of one of the air traffic controllers or military personnel, many of whom were not actors, but playing themselves. There were these constant reminders of what would happen on what was etched in memory as an otherwise perfect September day.
I found the portrayal of the European passenger desperately pleading for other passengers to do nothing and "everything would be o.k" very symbolic of the larger problem we have in dealing effectively with this global threat.
The gentleman was speaking in German on his cell phone as the passengers waited in the departure lounge. It was in Germany, at the Munich Olympics in 1972 that modern Islamic terrorism was born. The Palestinian group "Black September" (presaging a future black September 11th) murdered 11 Israeli athletes that first black September (5th).
I clapped when the other passengers pushed him aside and we began the counter attack.
What strikes me most about the movie is that all the Americans on that plane were united. The passengers were not targeted because they voted for Bush, or supported Israel or the running gambit of delusion that some in this country use to shield themselves from the truth. Those Americans on United 93 were representative of the great spirit, courage and fierce determination to defend freedom that exists in every one of us. They are us, and we them.
The last scene spoke volumes. As we took the food cart and battered down the cockpit door, it was as if a giant had been unleashed and no force could stop it. The terrorists would not complete their mission and the horror that their attack would bring was vanquished.
The message from United 93 is clear: freedom and justice will prevail if we remain united towards the only goal that brings peace: V I C T O R Y!
Thursday, May 11, 2006
Further Adventures of Indigo Red: Ahmadinejad Letter is Prelude to War
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
The nutjob running Iran, President Ahmadinejad, sent President Bush a letter, and if it weren't postmarked Tehran it might have been mistaken for a crank letter from an angry leftist in L.A. or Boulder or Cambridge, Massachusetts.The left in this country goes bonkers if President Bush even mentions religion. Iranian Hitler Amadjihad invokes Jesus Christ NINE TIMES! Where's the outrage about the religious Iranian trying to impose his views on the rest of us?
Christians not acting Christian, says the Iranian president. Democrat talking point.
WMD lies, says the Iranian president. Democrat talking point.
Human rights abuses in Gitmo. Another Dem talking point.
The gap between haves and have-nots. The Iranian president and the Dems in lockstep on that one, too.
The biggest difference? Ahmadinejad was actually nice about Jesus and Christians.
Nobody should believe him, but he said nice things about Jesus Christ, and he kept muttering after each mention, "Peace be upon him."
I'm not saying the Iranian nutjob president who wants to wipe Israel off the map is a Democrat. He's anything but.
However, the loyal opposition in this country probably doesn't want to be sounding like him. And if he's borrowing their talking points, maybe they should adjust a bit.
This comes as authorities in Tehran are announcing the former U.S. Embassy in Tehran might soon become a park. It will be called the "Great Satan Park." "We would like to be able to show off the American crimes to citizens strolling in the park," said an Iranian general.
That's nice. I'm sure Ramsey Clark and Hugo Chavez will want to go over for a stroll.
But no other sane American public figure would want to even appear to be on the same page as these guys.
If I were writing political press releases for any American political party, or doing the strategery thing for candidates who want to challenge the incumbent, I'd always keep an eye on what the nutjobs around the world are saying and make certain I didn't sound like them. Seems prudent. At least that's what I think.
Who knows? Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe some people so hate Bush they'll want to stick to their rhetoric no matter who joins them in the choir. You never know.
Meanwhile, former Secretary of State, Madeline Alwrong, couldn't help but stick her nose into the issue of the Iranian letter, signaling the Iranians that America is not united in opposing Iran's effort to build nukes.
The same woman who validated North Korea's nuclear strategy that led directly to getting their own nukes is now saying we need to appease another nuclear crazed mad man. In Seattle to push her new book (editor:YAWN!) she insisted that we need to talk directly to the Iranians: "It's not appeasement. You've got to deliver a tough message."
Like so many delusional Democrats Madeline fails to realize that like North Korea, Iran's leaders are not rational. Talking "tough" to them is not only a waste of time, but it encourages their irrational behavior.
We can thank fools like Alwrong for the problem with North Korea. But thank GOD the adults are back in charge of foreign policy regarding Iran.
Thank GOD for that smarmy Nancy Pelosi, the Democrats leader in the House of Representatives, and that funeral director Harry Reid, who leads Democrats in the Senate.
Without the fear of what misfortune would befall our nation should they take control, conservatives would behave even more like a herd of cats than they do already.
Last week, Rush Limbaugh issued a stern warning to conservatives, echoing similar calls from Party Chairman Ken Mehlman and political strategist Karl Rove.
Rush reminded those of us with short attention spans of a similar time 20 years ago when President Reagan faced a similar revolt. At the time, Fred Barnes wrote a column describing how conservatives were just too eager to trash Mr. Reagan who was mired in Iran Contra difficulties and finding the last two years of office much more difficult than the preceding six. Conservative Blog Therapy has the column and it should be a must read for those who are spening more time encouraging Democrats in 2006 than in uniting together for victory.
Here's the money quote:
Conservatives do not retrieve their "wounded" from the battlefield; they abandon them. There is so much -- especially more so today than ever before, there's so much -- competition out there. Conservatism has gotten so big; it has so many people who want to claim to be the leader, claim to be the definers, that if anybody takes a hit, they're happy to let them fade away.
When George Stephanopoulis on ABC's This Week program twice referred to Nancy Pelosi as House Speaker, conservatives must have gone into shock. Except that almost no one but hapless left wing dreamers watch the show!
Still, Pelosi's appearance on Meet the Press sent plenty of shivers up what's left of conservative spines.
And her performance didn't go un-noticed. Slate's John Dickerson wrote a column entitled "Nancy Pelosi, Super Genius" which brings images of Warner Brother's cartoon character, the inept Wile E. Coyote, who tried so hard, but always failed to catch the roadrunner.
Thomas Bray of the Detroit News takes up the nightmare scenario with "No Wonder Voters Doubtful About Dems." Here's an excerpt:
Democrats hope that George Bush's miserable poll numbers will help them reclaim control of Congress this fall. But polls also show that the Democratic Party's overall approval ratings are almost as deep in the tank as the Republican rating. Voters may be expressing dismay at the alternatives.
That would be understandable. The relentlessly partisan House Minority Leader, Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco, as Speaker? Sen. Robert Byrd, the ancient king of pork from West Virginia, as head of Senate appropriations? Gasbags like Patrick Leahy and Teddy Kennedy back in charge of judicial nominations?
Or how about John Conyers, the Detroit-congressman-for-life who would automatically become chairman of the House Judiciary Committee? Nancy Pelosi has promised that one of her first acts as House Speaker would be to unleash a series of investigations into the Bush administration. As it happens, Conyers has given us a taste of what life would be like under the Pelosi reign of terror.
Last June Conyers commandeered a basement conference room in the Capitol to stage a mock hearing into impeachment charges over the Iraq war. "[Conyers] banged a large wooden gavel and got the other lawmakers to call him 'Mr. Chairman,'" recounted Washington Post reporter Dana Milbank. "He liked that so much that he started calling himself 'the chairman' and spouted other chairmanly phrases, such as 'unanimous consent' and 'without objection so ordered.'"
On real issues closer to home - where the Detroit police department has long been operating under Justice Department supervision because of citizen abuses, or the meltdown of the city school system - Conyers has been notably silent. (His own kids reportedly attended a private school in the Detroit suburbs.) His big issue domestically: a reparations bill for blacks that he has introduced every year since 1989.
Okay, so voters in California, Texas and New York have never heard of John Conyers, who was first elected to Congress in 1964. But if the Pelosi Democrats don't find ways to show that they that will use their power for serious purposes, as opposed to show trials a la Conyers, voters may decide to stick with the devils they know.
Conservative commentator Ben Stein has said and written many laudatory things about America's military. He lambasted Hollywood for not one mention of the troops during the Oscars broadcast.The Ben Stein Letter in the American Spectator:
But one column he wrote gained the special attention of a very important person — Marine Gen. Peter Pace, Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman. In fact, Gen. Pace liked the piece so much he e-mailed it to his regular address list, including Army Gen. George Casey, the top commander in Iraq.
"I hesitate to forward e-mail but I think our service members should be aware of this," he said, under the title, "Ben Stein speaks the truth."
Dear Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, National Guard, Reservists, in Iraq, in the Middle East theater, in Afghanistan, in the area near Afghanistan, in any base anywhere in the world, and your families:Now, THAT is how you support the troops!
Let me tell you about why you guys own about 90 percent of the cojones in the whole world right now and should be damned happy with yourselves and damned proud of who you are. It was a dazzlingly hot day here in Rancho Mirage today. I did small errands like going to the bank to pay my mortgage, finding a new bed at a price I can afford, practicing driving with my new 5 wood, paying bills for about two hours.
I spoke for a long time to a woman who is going through a nasty child custody fight. I got e-mails from a woman who was fired today from her job for not paying attention. I read about multi-billion-dollar mergers in Europe, Asia, and the Mideast. I noticed how overweight I am, for the millionth time.
In other words, I did a lot of nothing. Like every other American who is not in the armed forces family, I basically just rearranged the deck chairs on the Titanic in my trivial, self-important, meaningless way.
Above all, I talked to a friend of more than forty-three years who told me he thought his life had no meaning because all he did was count his money.
And, friends in the armed forces, this is the story of all of America today. We are doing nothing but treading water while you guys carry on the life or death struggle against worldwide militant Islamic terrorism. Our lives are about nothing: paying bills, going to humdrum jobs, waiting until we can go to sleep and then do it all again. Our most vivid issues are trivia compared with what you do every day, every minute, every second.
Oprah Winfrey talks a lot about "meaning" in life. For her, "meaning" is dieting and then having her photo on the cover of her magazine every single month (surely a new world record for egomania ).This is not "meaning."
Meaning is doing for others. Meaning is risking your life for others. Meaning is putting your bodies and families' peace of mind on the line to defeat some of the most evil, sick killers the world has ever known. Meaning is leaving the comfort of home to fight to make sure that there still will be a home for your family and for your nation and for free men and women everywhere.
Look, soldiers and Marines and sailors and airmen and Coast Guardsmen, there are eight billion people in this world. The whole fate of this world turns on what you people, 1.4 million, more or less, do every day. The fate of mankind depends on what about 2/100 of one percent of the people in this world do every day -- and you are those people. And joining you is every policeman, fireman, and EMT in the country, also holding back the tide of chaos.
Do you know how important you are? Do you know how indispensable you are? Do you know how humbly grateful any of us who has a head on his shoulders is to you?
Do you know that if you never do another thing in your lives, you will always still be heroes? That we could live without Hollywood or Wall Street or the NFL, but we cannot live for a week without you?
We are on our knees to you and we bless and pray for you every moment.
And Oprah Winfrey, if she were a size two, would not have one millionth of your importance, and all of the Wall Street billionaires will never mean what the least of you do, and if Barry Bonds hit ninety home runs it would not mean as much as you going on one patrol or driving one truck to the Baghdad airport.
You are everything to us, as we go through our little days, and you are in the prayers of the nation and of every decent man and woman on the planet.
That's who you are and what you mean. I hope you know that.
Love, Ben Stein
From the Cincinatti Business Courier:
Undocumented workers at Fischer Homes were among more than 80 arrests made in Northern Kentucky Tuesday, as part of a crackdown on companies hiring illegal aliens.
According to a report by WCPO-TV, about 77 of the arrested workers were laborers, but police also raided the home builder's Crestview Hills headquarters and arrested four construction supervisors. An investigation into the home builder's hiring practices has been going on for about two years, the TV station reported, and the supervisors were allegedly housing undocumented workers in a Florence apartment complex.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
By way of Cox and Forkum, this story from FoxNews: Chavez Proposes Referendum to Stay President Until 2031.
President Hugo Chavez said that if opposition parties boycott December's presidential election he would call a referendum asking voters to decide whether he should govern Venezuela for the next 25 years.
Speaking Saturday at a stadium packed with supporters in central Lara state, Chavez rejected allegations he was a power-hungry tyrant but said he might seek to extend his rule beyond current term limits if the opposition pulls out of the presidential vote, as it did last year's congressional election. ...
The Venezuelan Constitution allows a president to be re-elected only once in immediate succession. Chavez is eligible for re-election to another six-year term in December, but if he wins he wouldn't be able to run again in 2012.
And if you drop in at Cox and Forkum, you'll see this companion story from Moscow News, or MosNews: Venezuela is buying oil from Russia due to shortfalls in supply and gross mismanagment of resources. Chavez purges and mismanagement have also caused a 60% decline in oil production.
Let's not forget our lefty friends who claim that buying CITGO gas is funding a "democratic revolution." More like funding another Marxist despot for life, but again, it comes down to definitions. When the left says "democratic" think Marxist dictatorship.
And of course our lefty friends were insisting that Chavez, the man of the people, will use his petrodollars to alleviate hunger and poverty! Well, if you kill the goose that lays the golden egg, how many eggs will you have?
Not to worry lefties. When Chavez wrecks his economy and decimates the rain forest you can find some way of blaming it all on the Western imperialism that "made him do it."
More on Chavez's "democratic revolution" here.
We've all heard the news accounts of various U.S. cities declaring "sanctuary" for illegal aliens and instructing local police not to inquire about the legal residency of immigrants stopped by the police.
Maywood, a suburb of Los Angeles even went so far as to disband a traffic enforcement unit because it might be perceived as a threat to the town's residents, two thirds of which are illegal aliens and do not have driver's licenses.
A similar situation exists in parts of Colorado. In the Denver suburb of Aurora, Mauro Najera was stopped for reckless driving and speeding near an elementary school 30 minutes before he began a street race with a car driven by Garcia-Felix and possibly two or three other vehicles. A crash ensued and a 15 year old girl riding in Najera's car was killed and six other teens injured.
The drivers of the two cars are illegal aliens without drivers licenses. News accounts failed to report the legal status of the other teens, but what do you want to bet they are all illegals as well.
So, another liberal feel-good policy has resulted in the senseless death of a teenage girl and cost of health care for the injured will be another benefit provided by the U.S. taxpayer.
Thanks Plumber for the heads up on this story.