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Sunday October 1, 2005

Mark Steyn makes some excellent points regarding the terribly inaccurate Hurricane Katrina coverage:

Er, no. The facts they put in front of us were wrong, and they didn't talk truth to power. They talked to goofs in power, like New Orleans' Mayor Nagin and Police Chief Compass, and uncritically fell for every nutso yarn they were peddled. The media swallowed more bilge than if they'd been lying down with their mouths open as the levee collapsed. Ten thousand dead! Widespread rape and murder! A 7-year-old gang-raped and then throat-slashed! It was great stuff -- and none of it happened. No gang-raped 7-year-olds. None.

...But nobody got killed by a hooligan in the Superdome. The problem wasn't rape and murder, but the rather more prosaic lack of bathroom facilities. As Ben Stein put it, it was the media that rioted. They grabbed every lurid rumor and took it for a wild joyride across prime time. There was a real story in there -- big hurricane, people dead -- but it wasn't enough, and certainly not for damaging President Bush.

Then, in his typical Steynian way, he manages to make the logical leap to larger meaning:

Think about that: Hurricane week was in large part a week of drivel, mostly the bizarre fantasies of New Orleans' incompetent police chief but amplified hugely by a gullible media. Given everything we now know they got wrong in Louisiana, where they speak the language, how likely is it that the great blundering herd are getting it any more accurate in Iraq?

Sunday September 18, 2005

You know that John Roberts' confirmation is a given when the left-leaning David Broder writes this in todays Washington Post:

The question of whether Judge John Roberts is qualified to be chief justice of the United States has been rendered moot by his performance in the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings. He is so obviously -- ridiculously -- well-equipped to lead government's third branch that it is hard to imagine how any Democrats can justify a vote against his confirmation.

Remember this the next time you hear Schumer, Biden or Feinstein bloviating about "the fullness of his heart". Then, go read todays Mark Steyn:

New York's senior senator, Chuck Schumer, began with some observations about Judge Roberts' "troubling" record on "the issue of civil rights." Ah-ha! "Many of us consider racism the nation's poison," he said sternly. And then he dropped the big one: Twenty-five years ago Roberts had inappropriately used the word "amigos" in a memo.

This sentiment is anathema to liberals who want to blame society for all of the ills of the downtrodden, but many of the inner city poor are victims of their own poor choices. It's a little thing called "personal responsibility". Is it then, any surprise that they continue to make poor choices:

Retailer Vicki Haniford said she has begun refusing the cards at her store in Illinois. "[Last] Saturday, I had 14 transactions go through from about six different people totaling a little over $1,000," she E-mailed. "They purchased jewelry and a TV with a DVD player. I called the Red Cross and they said unfortunately these people made bad choices when purchasing, but there was nothing they could do. "This is totally and morally wrong," she says. "Many hard-working Americans donated money to the disaster victims so they could have food and clothing, not buy outrageous items."

Although this article indicates the Red Cross as the organization distributing the debit cards, I remember that FEMA was issuing debit cards as well. To me it's an important difference. The Red Cross is a charitable organization and, as such, contributions are voluntary. No so with FEMA. It's operating funds come directly from out tax dollars. I'm reminded of the following quote from some politician (no, I'm not gonna find out who) once said :

If I spend my money on myself, I care what I buy and how much it costs.
If I spend my money on someone else, I don't care what I buy, but I care how much it costs.
If I spend someone else's money on myself, I care what I buy, but I don't care how much it costs.
If I spend someone else's money on someone else, I don't care what I buy and I don't care how much it costs.

Sunday August 28, 2005

Hurricane Katrina threatens New Orleans as a catastrophic category 5 storm. She is the fourth lowest Atlantic storm of all time. Here's the latest from the NHC:

2100Z SUN AUG 28 2005







INITIAL 28/2100Z 26.9N 89.0W 145 KT
12HR VT 29/0600Z 28.3N 89.8W 145 KT
24HR VT 29/1800Z 30.6N 89.9W 130 KT...INLAND
36HR VT 30/0600Z 33.4N 89.2W 60 KT...INLAND
48HR VT 30/1800Z 36.0N 87.5W 35 KT...INLAND
72HR VT 31/1800Z 41.0N 81.5W 30 KT...INLAND
96HR VT 01/1800Z 48.0N 72.5W 25 KT...EXTRATROPICAL
120HR VT 02/1800Z...ABSORBED

Hey, didn't the NYT fire that Blair kid? If so, then why this. It isn't just a misquote, it's a doctored quote.

Monday August 22, 2005

"Racial profiling simply doesn't work", asserts Kim Zetter, in today's Salon:

By anyone's standard, Anne-Marie Murphy didn't look like a terrorist threat. In 1986, Murphy was a 32-year-old hotel chambermaid from Dublin, Ireland, who was six months pregnant and on her way to marry her fiancé in Israel. Authorities discovered a bomb in her carry-on bag as she boarded a plane in London on her way to Tel Aviv.

Kozo Okamoto didn't fit the profile of a terrorist, either. In 1972, he and two other Japanese passengers had just arrived in Tel Aviv on a flight from Puerto Rico when they retrieved guns from their checked bags and opened fire in the arrival terminal at Ben Gurion International Airport, killing more than two dozen people and injuring nearly 80.

Nor did Patrick Arguello seem like a state enemy in 1970 before he tried to hijack an Israeli El Al plane flying from Amsterdam, Netherlands, to New York. Arguello, who was killed by Israeli sky marshals as he tried to carry out his attempt, was a Nicaraguan who had attended high school in Los Angeles.

Seems Ms. Zetter's most solid argument against racial profiling goes something like, "Terrorists are not all Muslim. They come from all different cultures and ethnicities". Yet, look at the examples she uses to prove her case. The most recent is from 19 years ago. The other two examples are from more than 30 years ago. If, indeed, there were such an ethnic diversity of terrorists, then surely Ms. Zetter could come up with more recent instances. The fact is that most modern day terrorism is Islamic terrorism.

So let's do a little test. I'll do a search for the term "terrorist attack" and let's see what I come up with....The first hit is an update on the people arrested in the attack in Jordan a few days ago--residents or Syria, Egypt, Jordan and Iraq. The second hit was headlined, "Britain Rejected Russian Aid in London Terrorist Attack Investigations". The third hit was a gas explosion in California that a resident thought was a "terrorist" attack. So, to recap: the first two hits were Muslim terrorist attacks, the third hit was not an attack, but an accident. Of course, your results may vary.

So with this in mind, if you actually want to catch terrorists (especially suicide bombers) before they act, wouldn't it be sensible to use your limited time, personnel and resources to investigate the population from whose ranks most of the offenders originate?

Too early to tell for sure, but this is probably another random act of kindness from the Religion of Peace:

A powerful explosion late Monday rocked a shopping center and hotel in the Zalka neighborhood in north Beirut, injuring at least two people and causing extensive damage, security officials said.

Where else but in the pages of the wacky LA Times could you find something like this:

IRAN'S NUCLEAR POLICY is more about nationalism and pride than weapons and energy. If the United States' policy toward Iran ignores the national pride of the Iranian people, it could cause lasting repercussions that will set back relations between Iran, the United States and U.S. allies for a long time to come.

Well, I'll agree with Mr. Mokhtari on one point: Iran's nuclear policy is certainly not about enegry. But, it is most surely about weapons. Nationalism and pride--only the Left can believe that.

Confessions of a Hollywood Republican:

I’m a Republican. A heretofore secret Hollywood Republican. I know men and women who are heavy drug addicts and they have no problem finding employment in Hollywood. I know men and women who are gambling addicts and they work pretty regularly. There’s even a director who was arrested for child molestation and yet was hired by Disney — yes, Disney — to helm a picture, and people defended this decision by saying even child molesters have a right to work. I would bet my bottom dollar that all these people are on the correct side of the political spectrum. They are liberal democrats.

Me, I’m a Republican. A conservative Republican. I believe passionately in free market capitalism. I believe in the Second Amendment, i.e., the right to bear arms (I even own several guns and go to the shooting range with friends from shul several times a month). I despise communism and fascism, and I believe there is a special place in hell for Islamic totalitarians and their Western apologists — probably 99.9 percent of Hollywood people.

Wednesday August 17, 2005

Leave it to the AP to conflate two separate issues when it fits their agenda. Think critically about this paragraph:

Anyone doubting the effects of human activity on global climate change should talk to the people it affects in Alaska and the Yukon, U.S. Sen. John McCain said Wednesday. Fresh from a trip to Barrow, America's northernmost city, McCain said anecdotes from Alaskans and residents of the Yukon Territory confirm scientific evidence of global warming.

Climate change is nearly universally equated with human induced climate change or global warming among the media. They then go on to explain that there is really very little doubt that global warming is occuring. Here's a typical quote from the AP article:

"I don't think there is any doubt left for anyone who actually looks at the science," Clinton said. "There are still some holdouts, but they are fighting a losing battle. The science is overwhelming, but what is deeply concerning is that climate change is accelerating."

There are two separate issues. Yes, there is strong and convincing evidence that the earth is getting warmer--global warming, if you will. Very few credible scientists will offer much to discount this theory. The earth has experienced periods of global warming and global cooling throughout it's history. There is, however, scant evidence that the current period of warming is caused by humans. Now read the initial AP graf again. They clearly conflate these two issues. They equate the effects of human activity on global climate change with global warming as if they are one and the same. My opinion is that the effects of human activity on global climate change are a very small subset of global warming. Perhaps 1% to 5%. Probably indistinguishable from noise. Which is how I view the AP. Noise.

But hey, it's not just the AP. Here's a recent story from Reuters. After going through a litany of evidence of warming in the great white north, the writer inserts this graf:

Such observations provide more ammunition in the fight for a bill, co-sponsored by McCain and Connecticut Democrat Joe Lieberman, to cap U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, McCain said. That bill has repeatedly failed to pass the Senate.

Clearly, the writer has already made up his mind that if there is warming, then it's cause by humans--specifically, by emiting greenhouse gasses. Of course, there is no evidence offered.

Additional reading: Meltdown: The Predictable Distortion of Global Warming by Scientists, Politicians, and the Media

This week, the Israeli government began it's disengagement program--voluntarily evacuating the Gaza Strip. Of course, all the Arab governments--especially the PA--see this as a victory. Their terrorism has paid off. Israel did not get anything in return for this evacuation. But most interesting is the date of this "disengagement". This from

Today marks the ninth day of the Jewish month of Av, the date on the lunar calendar on which the First and Second Temples were destroyed. Other more recent tragedies occurred on the same date, such as the outbreak of pogroms against Jews during the First Crusade, the expulsion of Jews from Spain and later from England, and the crushing of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising in Germany.

More on the 9th of Av here.

Indeed, the leader of Hamas said that the withdrawal is "the beginning of the end for Israel". Say what you want about those crazy islamic jihadis but they generally say what they mean and they generally mean what they say:

"Now, after the victory in the Gaza Strip, we will transfer the struggle first to the West Bank and later to Jerusalem," Zahar told the London-based pan-Arab daily Asharq Al-Awsat. "We will continue the struggle until we liberate all our lands. This is an important day for the Palestinians and proof that the armed struggle has born fruit."

Asked about Hamas's future plans, Zahar said: "Neither the liberation of the Gaza Strip, nor the liberation of the West Bank or even Jerusalem will suffice us. Hamas will pursue the armed struggle until the liberation of all our lands. We don't recognize the state of Israel or its right to hold onto one inch of Palestine. Palestine is an Islamic land belonging to all the Muslims."

The AP finally takes umbrage at the exploitation of children in the Middle East. No, it's not children learning terrorist tactics in Palestinian schools. It's not young children dressed as suicide bombers. To some, it's even worse than that (emphases added):

  • One family pinned orange Star of David badges to eight screaming children, who marched from a trailer with hands raised -- apparently to recall images of the Nazi deportation of Jews.

  • A father shoved his daughter, about 10 years old, toward a soldier, shouting: "Expel her, please take her, you are such a hero." A mother cut the shirts of two young boys with scissors in a ritual of mourning.

  • In the Gaza pullout Wednesday, terrified children were caught in the tug-of-war between settlers and soldiers.

  • Some experts warned the youngsters could be psychologically scarred.

  • Throughout the day Wednesday, children were at the center of many confrontations, including some of the most heartrending.

Monday August 15, 2005

The unilateral Israeli pullout from the Gaza Strip is nearly finished. Initially, at the beginning of this "Peace Process", many Israelis were willing to trade land for peace. This is certainly not land for peace. This is land for continued terrorism. This is land for war.

Daniel Pipes explains that the damage will be three-fold:

Sharon won the prime ministry in early 2003 by electorally crushing an opponent who espoused unilateral withdrawal from Gaza. Sharon declared back then: "A unilateral withdrawal is not a recipe for peace. It is a recipe for war." For unknown reasons, in late 2003 he adopted his opponent's policy of leaving Gaza, thereby reneging on his promises, betraying his supporters, and inflicting lasting damage on Israeli public life.

To Palestinian rejectionists, an Israeli retreat under fire sends an unambiguous signal: Terrorism works. Just as the Israeli departure from Lebanon five years earlier provoked new violence, so too will fleeing Gaza. Palestinians ignore all the verbiage about "disengagement" and see it for what it really is, an Israeli retreat under fire. Indeed, Palestinian leaders have already broadcast their intent to deploy Gaza-like aggression to pry the West Bank and Jerusalem from Israeli control. Should that campaign succeed, Haifa and Tel Aviv are next, after which Israel itself disappears.

The Sharon government has also defaulted on its obligations to its allies in the war on terror. As other states, such as Great Britain, finally show signs of getting more serious about counterterrorism, Israel's politicians release hundreds of convicted terrorists and retreat under fire from Gaza, encouraging more terrorism.

The message is loud and clear in the Arab world: Terrorism Pays:

For their part, the two Lebanese Shiite groups Amal and Hezbollah issued a joint statement saying "the routing of the Israeli enemy of Gaza is a high point in the long struggle of the Palestinian resistance". They said the withdrawal "proves the effectiveness of resistance."

Now, more and more of the Arab world is demanding that Israel relinquish additional land with absolutely no concessions from the Palestinians:

Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas acknowledged the “historic and important” nature of the Israeli pullout from Gaza after 38 years but denounced an Israeli insistence it would keep hold of its West Bank settlement blocs.

Saudi Arabia “looks forward to the Israeli pullout from the Gaza Strip being a step followed by other steps toward withdrawal from all occupied Palestinian territories so the Palestinian people can build their state, with Jerusalem as its capital,” said a statement issued after the weekly meeting of the Saudi cabinet in the Red Sea city of Jeddah.

In Kuwait, the cabinet voiced hope the pullout would be “the first step by Israel to end its occupation of Palestinian territories and will be followed by other steps in compliance with relevant UN resolutions”.

The UAE welcomed the pullout jointly with the US during talks between a top UAE official and US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in Washington, according to the Emirati WAM news agency.

H M King Hamad bin Issa Al Khalifa of Bahrain congratulated Abbas in a telephone call on the Gaza pullout, saying he hoped it was “a step on the road to the establishment of a Palestinian state” with Jerusalem as its capital, the BNA news agency reported.

Hindsight is not always 20/20. Especially, if you're a member of the modern-day Know Nothings:

By now you will have read many summaries of a recently released Able Danger report. The Able Danger operation is described by former CIA operative and terrorism expert Wayne Simmons as “one of our best covert operations.” The operation he continues, was expert at “using open source intel to locate and identify Islamic terrorists.” We can only surmise that a gold mine of information lies yet unrevealed. The latest result was neatly addressed by NY Post columnist Deborah Orin who wrote tellingly of the incredible ineptitude of the highly-touted and endlessly self-absorbed 9/11 Commission. Staffers - perhaps even the self-promoting Commissioners themselves - intentionally ignored Able Danger reports that were delivered on at least two separate briefings, that provided detailed intelligence on terrorist Mohammed Atta and three other hijackers years prior to the September 11 attack.

The Victor Davis Hanson immigration reform act:

Control our borders and enforce existing laws. Fine employers who hire illegal immigrants. Provide a mechanism of foolproof identification. Return to policies of English-language immersion and cultural assimilation. Pay more now in higher labor costs — but save far more later by avoiding entitlement, law-enforcement and social chaos.And, most controversially, work out a one-time-only citizenship plan for those who have resided for substantial time in the United States.

One thing that I've seen in the business world that I usually detest are "programmed decisions". If X happens, then we do Y. No other extraneous factors need be considered. This makes decision-making quite easy. It's your basic "no brainer". Like most things, it's probably the fault of the attorneys. Discrimination suits hinge on unequal outcomes. Best to play it safe and easy. Drug-free Zone. Gun-free Zone. Thought-free Zone. Whether a kid has a Tylenol, or draws a picture of a gun, it doesn't matter. No other factors are considered.

Unfortunately, our government has adopted this thought-free mentality in the War on Terror:

Infants have been stopped from boarding planes at airports throughout the U.S. because their names are the same as or similar to those of possible terrorists on the government's "no-fly list."

...Sarah Zapolsky and her husband had a similar experience last month while departing from Dulles International Airport outside Washington. An airline ticket agent told them their 11-month-old son was on the government list. They were able to board their flight after ticket agents took a half-hour to fax her son's passport and fill out paperwork. "I understand that security is important," Zapolsky said. "But if they're just guessing, and we have to give up our passport to prove that our 11-month-old is not a terrorist, it's a waste of their time."

Mark Steyn points out one oft overlooked benefit of the invasion of Iraq: documentation of U.N. corruption:

...Despite the current investigations into his brother, his son, his son's best friend, his former chief of staff, his procurement officer and the executive director of the UN's biggest ever programme, the Secretary-General insists he remains committed to staying on and tackling the important work of "reforming" the UN. Unfortunately, his Executive Co-Ordinator for United Nations Reform has also had to resign.

More political correctness run amok:

New Mexico State University's mascot, Pistol Pete, is being disarmed. University officials have also stripped the word "Pistol" from Pete's name. The new logo shows Pete twirling a lasso. The old Pete toted a pistol.

Wednesday July 27, 2005

Michelle Malkin advises us to beware of strange men with rocket launchers:

"On 14 Jul 05, three individuals were observed outside of the perimeter of Tinker AFB, OK. They were looking through binoculars, taking pictures and one appeared to be holding a large weapon at chest level. The weapon appeared to be aimed towards a low flying aircraft. The three individuals were described as being of Middle Eastern descent and left the area when approached. The weapon was later identified as a rocket launcher (MANPAD) and the low flying aircraft to be a B-1 Bomber. FBI in Oklahoma City and AFOSI [Air Force Office of Special Investigations] determined the threat to be credible."

Mike S. Adams explains how to have peace of mind and enjoy success in any endeavour. His philosophy includes:

  • If you want to be happy and successful, you must immediately disabuse yourself of the notion that there is no such thing as good and evil.

  • You must also immediately disabuse yourself of the notion that good and evil are simply relative terms. There are moral absolutes and they have absolutely nothing to do with your personal feelings and perceptions.

Tammy Bruce, a recovering liberal.

Tuesday July 26, 2005

The liberal response to terror:

As the assassination at Sarajevo and the response to it triggered the 20th-century world wars, so 9/11 and the response to it could ruin our century. So much depends on whether we can break out of the cycle of violence. This requires a serious dialogue between the overlapping worlds of the west and Islam before irreversible mutual hatred sets in. We need such dialogue internationally, between western and Islamic leaders. We also need it in this country, between those who are not Islamic and those who are.

This sounds even worse than the stink eye:

Fringe activists held a midnight kabbalistic ritual in an ancient cemetery calling for angels of death to kill Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and thwart his Gaza withdrawal plan, participants in the ceremony told WND. The same individuals used the ritual against Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin one month before his assassination in 1995.

Friday July 22, 2005

Marco.......            Polo

Imagine this scenario: A young child is snatched by two men in a black van. An Amber Alert immediately goes out and the police set up roadblocks so that no vehicles can leave the cordoned area. Then, the orders come down from police H.Q., "search every fifth vehicle, let the others pass". Crazy, huh? Why wouldn't they look for vans? Why wouldn't they look for black vans? The answer is: of course they would. They would be scouring the area for black vans. All black vans would be pulled over and searched immediately.

So why, when we are faced with a terrorist which fits a distinct profile, do we ignore it? It's because we've been so corrupted as a society by liberalism and political correctness. We must be tolerant. We must not be judgemental. We must not acknowledge reality. Just today, Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced that New York City will be conducting random searches on the subways and buses. Random searches. Did you get that? It's as if we don't know what we're looking for. As if Methodists, feminists and the Sweedish Bikini Team are commiting these suicide bombings. So we are forced to look with our eyes closed to appease the liberal establishment:

The police commissioner said officers would take pains to avoid singling people out for searches based on race or ethnicity. "No racial profiling will be allowed," Mr. Kelly said. "It's against our policies. But it will be a systematized approach." He added, "We'll give some very specific and detailed instructions to our officers on how to do it in accordance with our laws and the Constitution." Despite the police commissioner's assurances, the new policy raised concerns about the prospect of unreasonable searches. "The police can and should be aggressively investigating anyone they suspect is trying to bring explosives into the subway," said Christopher Dunn, associate legal director at the New York Civil Liberties Union. "However, random police searches of people without any suspicion of wrongdoing are contrary to our most basic constitutional values. This is a very troubling announcement."

I say, get the kiddies out of the pool. It's time for Adult Swim.

Wednesday July 20, 2005

Here's what you didn't see last night during the Presidential announcement of John Roberts' nomination to the Supreme Court.

Remember when you were eight years old and watching The Jetsons. The future was supposed to be all robots, flying cars and ray guns. Well, the ray guns are here:

The Active Denial System weapon, classified as “less lethal” by the Pentagon, fires a 95-gigahertz microwave beam at rioters to cause heating and intolerable pain in less than five seconds. The idea is that people caught in the beam will rapidly try to move out of it and therefore break up the crowd.

Now if I could only get a good job at Spacely Space Sprockets.

I realize that you can't believe everything you read on the internet, but I did find this interesting:

For the 80 terror groups listed on the computers of the CIA, MI5, MI6 and Germany's BND, the weapon once more tips the scales in their favour. It is a new type of plastic explosive that was used by the two young British radical Muslims in last week's suicide bomb attack on the club in Tel Aviv. Three were killed and 50 injured. One of the suicide bombers escaped, leaving behind some explosive. After a week of intensive investigation by chemists at Israel's ultra-secret research centre in the Tel Aviv suburb of Nes Ziona, its lethal qualities and country of background have been discovered... The conclusion of the scientists sent a collective shock wave through the intelligence community. The Israeli experts concluded that the explosives were manufactured in the laboratories of ZDF, one of China's leading military defence contractors.

...Already Israeli military censors have placed a news blackout on all local media reporting any details about the new explosive. But speaking under a guarantee of anonymity, one source did say that the "explosive is far lighter and easier to conceal than previous kinds. It makes Semtex look outdated. This has tipped the scale back in favour of the terrorist".

Tuesday July 19, 2005

Has London Mayor, Ken Livingstone, learned anything about radical Islam since the attacks in his city nearly two weeks ago? Sadly, no:

London Mayor Ken Livingstone, whose city was devastated by Islamic suicide bombings earlier in the month, lashed out at Israel Tuesday, comparing the Likud to Hamas and accusing Israel of "crimes against humanity."

...Livingstone expressed understanding for the motivations of Palestinian suicide bombers, saying that since the "Palestinians don't have jet fighters, they only have their bodies to use as weapons. In that unfair balance, that's what people use."

Heck, maybe he should just watch a little CNN.

Apparently, the Left doesn't think it has enough of a stranglehold on the minds of our young at the university level. With the help of Soros' millions they now have launched Campus Progress. Apparently, this little lunch experience by Sky Andrecheck is typical fare:

When I finally got to the front of the line, the selection was waning. I was hungry and the sandwiches were small, but the line behind me was long, and being considerate, I only took one. “I will go a little hungry to give those with a less fortunate place in line a chance to eat,” I thought to myself. “Surely, they would do the same for me.” How wrong I was. The shrinking supply of sandwiches made the young Republicans simply pile their plates even higher with the freeloaded grub – with no regard at all for those behind who may get nothing.

If that's the best the libs can do, then I think we'll be just fine. Perhaps Andrecheck is saving some vitriol for those who come after him.

Jason Mattera writes on the Campus Progress campaign which is, as one pundit noted, a bit like pumping sand into the Mojave Desert.

Schools habitually offer courses in “ethnic studies,” “queer studies,” “gender studies” and have set up institutions such as multicultural student unions and women’s centers to spread liberalism under the rubric of tolerance and diversity. It’s a canard to say that liberalism is not embedded in the university, as Campus Progress purports. Schools don’t have courses on “Conservatism and American History” and surely would never invite Thomas Sowell or Clarence Thomas to speak at commencement, but have allowed Wesley Clark and Thomas Friedman.

It’s not the lack of resources, but the tactics used and ideas professed that cause student apathy toward progressive activism. The Left’s routine support for divisive concepts such as racial preferences, the banning of ROTC recruiters from campuses, and their widespread commitment to enforcing political correctness will keep them as second-rate activists. Soros’s millions will not help.

Liberalism run amok in the land down under:

THE word "fail" should be banned from use in British classrooms and replaced with the phrase "deferred success" to avoid demoralising pupils, a group of teachers has proposed. Members of the Professional Association of Teachers (PAT) argue that telling pupils they have failed can put them off learning for life. A spokesman for the group said it wanted to avoid labelling children. "We recognise that children do not necessarily achieve success first time," he said.

Seems like ol' thug Mugabe is just clearing out homes in Zimbabwe. About a million homes so far:

HUNDREDS of thousands of Zimbabweans made homeless by the brutal campaign of president Robert Mugabe to clear out slums look set to remain out in the cold for months. Press reports claim that construction teams and prison brigades working on replacement accommodation at a farm in the capital Harare have managed to build only 38 homes up to window level. Up to a million Zimbabweans have had their homes demolished during a two-month blitz on poor quality housing, which has provoked international outrage.

Mr Mugabe hit back last week, saying that Operation Clear Out Trash will bring "joy" to people because new homes are going to be built for them. But ruling party sources say his government is broke. At Whitecliff Farm, one of the sites earmarked for a massive housing development, "at least 38 houses [are] now at window level, while more than 150 others are at various stages of development," the Herald reported. The opposition MDC party says that Mr Mugabe is intent on punishing city dwellers who voted against him in parliamentary elections in March.

But what about the International Community? What about collective security. Well, of course the U.N. is on the case and Kofi Annan is very concerned. Oh, no. I got that completely wrong. They've ratcheted it up a notch. Mr. Annan is now increasingly concerned. Well, action by the U.N. can't be long in coming now. To highlight U.N. fecklessness, Arthur Chrenkoff has unfurled the new U.N. Terror Alert System.

The more I study it, the more convinced I am that in its original form, it was a cylinder. Note how the top and bottom colors are the same. So when we see the U.N. moving in circles, we now know why.

Thursday July 14, 2005

I have no doubt that this interview with the departing Doug Feith will be at the top of the hour news and in front page headlines for Friday. Why? Because it echoes what all liberals believe:

  • I don't think there is any question that we as an administration, instead of giving proper emphasis to all major elements of the rationale for war, overemphasized the WMD aspect.

  • It would have been better had we done a better job of communicating in all of its breadth the strategic rationale for the war

  • Our intelligence community made, apparently, an error, as to the stockpiles...Anything we said at all about stockpiles was overemphasis, given that we didn't find them.

Of course, he said some other stuff, but the list above is what most people will hear.

Once again, the Chinese generals are sabre-rattling:

“If the Americans draw their missiles and position-guided ammunition on to the target zone on China's territory, I think we will have to respond with nuclear weapons.

Ode to America from a Romanian blogger:

Still, the American tragedy turned three hundred million people into a hand put on the heart. Nobody rushed to accuse the White House, the army, the secret services that they are only a bunch of losers. Nobody rushed to empty their bank accounts. Nobody rushed on the streets nearby to gape about. The Americans volunteered to donate blood and to give a helping hand. After the first moments of panic, they raised the flag on the smoking ruins, putting on T-shirts, caps and ties in the colours of the national flag. They placed flags on buildings and cars as if in every place and on every car a minister or the president was passing. On every occasion they started singing their traditional song: "God Bless America!".

Nasra Hassan has interviewed over 200 muslim suicide bombers and writes in today's Times Online. Hassan makes it exceedingly clear (at least to anyone who is paying attention) that suicide bombers are not driven by desperation or poverty--it is religion that motivates them:

None of the suicide bombers — they ranged in age from 18 to 38 — conformed to the typical profile of the suicidal personality. None of them was uneducated, desperately poor, simple-minded, or depressed. Many were middle-class and held paying jobs. Two were the sons of millionaires. They all seemed entirely normal members of their families. They were polite and serious, and in their communities were considered to be model youths. Most were bearded. All were deeply religious.

But there are so many people out there who don't recognize that these people are killing in the name of religion:

A London Anglican priest named Paul Hawkins said in a sermon: “We can name the people who did these things as criminals or terrorists. We must not name them as Muslims.”

Of course they're killing in the name of religion. But don't take my word for it. Listen to the words of the killer of Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh:

"If I were released and would have the chance to do it again . . . I would do exactly the same thing.What moved me to do what I did was purely my faith. . . . I was motivated by the law that commands me to cut off the head of anyone who insults Allah and his prophet."

Or, maybe you should watch Palestinian television:

"Annihilate the Infidels and the Polytheists! Your [i.e. Allah's] enemiesare the enemies of the religion! Allah, disperse their gathering and breakup their unity, and turn on them, the evil adversities. Allah, count themand kill them to the last one, and don't leave even one."


Wednesday July 13, 2005

Daniel Pipes, writing today in The Australian (or was it tomorrow?) compares British and French responses to the War on Terror. Read it, you'll be surprised. Here's a snippet:

THANKS to the war in Iraq, much of the world sees the British Government as resolute and tough, the French one as appeasing and weak. But in another war, the one against terrorism and radical Islam, the reverse is true: France is the most stalwart nation in the West, even more so than the US, while Great Britain is the very most hapless.

Fresh from the pages of the New York Times comes the breaking news that Experts Fear Suicide Bomb Is Spreading Into the West. Dang, that's almost psychic coming only six days after the actual event. I particularly like this quote:

"A suicide attacker could be anyone," said Daniel Benjamin, a former Clinton administration official and terrorism expert who is the author of "The Next Attack," due to be published this fall. "He doesn't have to be trained, just indoctrinated. There's no profile; that's what makes it so hard to defend against."

Could be anyone. There's no profile. Well, I can rule out a few suspects. They're not Methodists. They're not disgruntled postal workers. They're not feminists. Perhaps Mr. Benjamin hasn't noticed but 99% of these homocide bombers are young islamic males. It's just so sad the we're not profiling.

Good news for beef lovers.

This from the National Center for Policy Analysis:

Gun control advocates predicted that last year’s end to the federal assault weapons ban would bring a surge in gun crimes and police killings. But murder rates have actually fallen since then, says John R. Lott Jr. of the American Enterprise Institute. According to the FBI, 2004 crime statistics reveal:

  • Nationwide, murders fell by 3.6 percent, the first drop since 1999; the decline continued even after the assault weapons ban expired.

  • States with their own assault weapons bans in place experienced smaller drops in murder rates of about 2.4 percent, while murder rates in states without assault weapons bans dropped by 4 percent.

  • Furthermore, overall violent crime dropped last year.

Additionally, no study exists that proves the effectiveness of assault weapons bans, says Lott. A study by the Department of Justice during the Clinton years concluded that the effect of an assault weapons ban was "uncertain."Yet two weeks after the ban expired last September, 560 stories turned up on the Internet about the dangers of letting the ban expire. Ironically, only one story surfaced about last year’s declining crime rates.

Monday July 11, 2005

Mark Steyn writes that last weeks London bombings portend the future Israelification of Europe:

Whatever the attractions of anti-Semitism, it tends not to work out too well for those who over-invest in it — see the Third Reich, and the loopier parts of the Arab world today.And even among my own correspondents suspicion of the dread Jew seems to be blinding them to what last week’s events may more plausibly portend: the Israelification of European life. ...As in Israel, Europeans will get used to the idea that every so often, entirely at random, there will be days when your husband or daughter or best friend sets off for work and doesn’t come home.

...and this is what I mean by Israelification: the jihadists understand that Europe is up for grabs in a way that America isn’t.Israel/Palestine is,in the old joke, the twice promised land — a western democracy and a disaffected Muslim population exist in (for the most part) two solitudes but claim the same piece of real estate. As it happens, that’s also how more and more Muslims see Europe.

And as their numbers grow it seems likely that wily Islamic leaders in the Middle East will embrace the cause of the rights of European Muslims in the same way that they claim solidarity with the Palestinians. When France began contemplating its headscarf ban in schools, it dispatched government ministers to seek the advice of Egyptian imams, implicitly accepting the view of Islamic scholars that the Fifth Republic is now an outlying province of the dar al-Islam. As the Zionist Entity can testify, that’s not a club you necessarily want to be signed up for.

You would think the U.N. would have something better to do--well, I guess not. Apparently, Japanese discriminate against minorities; principally Koreans and Chinese.

An independent investigator for the UN says racism in Japan is deep and profound, and the government does not recognise the depth of the problem. Doudou Diene, a UN special rapporteur on racism and xenophobia, was speaking at the end of a nine-day tour of the country. He said Japan should introduce new legislation to combat discrimination.

So why, do you think, would Chinese and Koreans seek to go to Japan and live under such oppressive conditions? Maybe, it's because the conditions in their homelands are much, much, much, much worse. But when do you expect the U.N. to look into how China and N. Korea treat their ethnic minorities? Heck, the U.N. won't even notice the pervasive, widespread abuses of the indigenous population.

At least the U.N. should be proud of the diversity in the London morgues. Clearly, the multiculterati liberal establishment is pleased:

The pictures of the victims of last week's attacks in London tell of hundreds of individual stories of sorrow. But collectively the faces staring from newspaper pages, television screens or posters stuck to the walls near blast sites reflect one of the defining characteristics of the British capital: its remarkable cultural diversity.

From the Polish IT worker and the accountant from Mauritius to the Muslim Tunisian student working as waiter or the Italian economist, the victims reflect the wide range of nationalities and religions that make up the 7.2m inhabitants of the city a third of whom come from abroad.

“As with the attack on the World Trade Centre in New York, the poignant photographs and biographies [of the victims] make absolutely clear the cosmopolitan nature of the London population,” said Tony Travers from the London School of Economics. “They are entirely representative of a globalised city.”

It's quite refreshing to know that the islamic terrorists are equal opportunity death merchants.

Just in case you weren't sure, we have indeed crossed the Rubicon:

SCIENTISTS have been warned that their latest experiments may accidently produce monkeys with brains more human than animal.In cutting-edge experiments, scientists have injected human brain cells into monkey fetuses to study the effects.Critics argue that if these fetuses are allowed to develop into self-aware subjects, science will be thrown into an ethical nightmare.

An eminent committee of American scientists will call for restrictions into the research, saying the outcome of such studies cannot be predicted and may in fact produce subjects with a 'super-animal' intelligence.

Sunday July 10, 2005

After each terrorist attack someone (generally, a NYT reporter) brings up the old canards that, "we must understand them", or "they do this because they are just poor and frustrated". I guess King Abdullah of Jordan drew the short straw this time:

Jordan's King Abdullah said the world must tackle Arab frustration over poverty and perceived injustices in the Israeli-Palestinian and Iraqi conflicts if it is to stem militant violence. "There is tremendous frustration throughout the Middle East over ... the Israeli-Palestinian conflict -- that is the first thing that these extremists use to raise the level of tension," Abdullah said in an interview with CNN on Saturday. "The second one is Iraq, so if we deal with these core issues it does allow us to bring the level of tension down, but at the same time we do have to improve the lives of Arabs."

Those poor little misunderstood Arab terrorists. Roger Scruton, in the Times Online, skins and stuffs that canard:

APOLOGISTS for terrorism (and they are not in short supply) argue that it is a weapon used by people who despair of achieving their goals in any other way. It is a cry from the depths by those deprived of a voice in the political process. The terrorist is not an aggressor but a victim, and we must disarm him not by violence but by addressing the grievance that motivates his deeds. This argument has been used to excuse Palestinian suicide bombers, IRA kneecappers, Red Brigade kidnappers, and even the mass murderers of September 11. Its main effect is to blame the victim and excuse the crime.

An honest thinker and writer: Andrew Sullivan:

I guess it is something of a rightful comeuppance that so many of us who were so sure about the necessity for deposing Saddam Hussein are now beset with a very complicated series of doubts. History does that to true believers. I confess to what should be called a chastening.

...But let's concede some points up front, shall we? Part of my own reason for wanting to get rid of Saddam was his stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction. Boy, was I wrong. If someone on the other side had been insisting that the intelligence services of every Western nation (and several others) were out to lunch on this question, I could be chided for not listening hard enough. But almost no one was denying it, and I bought the almost universally assumed untruth. That's not the same thing as a lie—and I do not believe we were deliberately misled. But the absence of the primary rationale for the war remains a big deal. In some ways, I think we pro-warriors have not been pilloried enough for that misjudgment. If the war had been argued for in purely moral and geo-strategic terms—without the WMDs—we may well not have won the argument. Have I groveled enough yet?

Actually, no. I should concede some other things as well. The notion of a Saddam–al Qaeda connection in the past was tenuous, although it certainly could not have been ruled out in the future. I had no idea that we would invade with too few troops to keep the peace. I assumed that elementary post-war planning had taken place. I originally dismissed the first reports of mistreatment of prisoners as anti-American agitprop. Again, I knew that there had been a defensible technical decision in the White House that made terrorist captives "enemy combatants" rather than Geneva Convention–protected prisoners of war. But it did not occur to me that the result would be hundreds of cases of unspeakably inhumane treatment of detainees, including up to 100 deaths and the deployment of what can only be called torture in Bagram, Abu Ghraib, Basra, and across an archipelago of secret detention centers around the world.

I don't always agree with him, but he does make some good, thoughtful points.

Thursday July 7, 2005

The islamic terrorists struck London today:

A series of bomb attacks on London's transport network has killed more than 30 people and injured about 700 others. Three explosions on the Underground left 35 dead, two died in a blast on a bus and another died later in hospital. Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said the bombings had "the hallmarks of an al-Qaeda-related attack".

Bloggers were on the scene to make reports and send pictures. Citizen journalists. Meanwhile, shining light, erstwhile terrorist supporter and Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, had these sage words:

...this was not a terrorist attack against the mighty or the powerful, it is not aimed at presidents or prime ministers, it was aimed at ordinary working-class Londoners.

Ah, Kenny Boy, that's sort of the definition of terrorism--targeting civilians. The former would more properly be called "political assassination".

Here' George Galloway's reaction:

Mr Galloway said Londoners had "paid the price" for Tony Blair's decision to go to war in Iraq and Afghanistan. In the Commons debate, Mr Galloway condemned the "despicable act", but he warned that the Iraq war and other actions had created a "whole army of people out there that want to harm us".

I'm sure many people feel this way, but it just doesn't pass the reality test. Amir Taheri Knows why they did it:

But sorry, old chaps, you are dealing with an enemy that does not want anything specific, and cannot be talked back into reason through anger management or round-table discussions. Or, rather, this enemy does want something specific: to take full control of your lives, dictate every single move you make round the clock and, if you dare resist, he will feel it his divine duty to kill you.

The ideological soil in which alQaeda, and the many groups using its brand name, grow was described by one of its original masterminds, the Pakistani Abul-Ala al-Maudoodi more than 40 years ago. It goes something like this: when God created mankind He made all their bodily needs and movements subject to inescapable biological rules but decided to leave their spiritual, social and political needs and movements largely subject to their will. Soon, however, it became clear that Man cannot run his affairs the way God wants. So God started sending prophets to warn man and try to goad him on to the right path. A total of 128,000 prophets were sent, including Moses and Jesus. They all failed. Finally, God sent Muhammad as the last of His prophets and the bearer of His ultimate message, Islam. With the advent of Islam all previous religions were “abrogated” (mansukh), and their followers regarded as “infidel” (kuffar). The aim of all good Muslims, therefore, is to convert humanity to Islam, which regulates Man’s spiritual, economic, political and social moves to the last detail.

Here's Christopher Hitchens in today's Slate:

...Europe is steadily becoming a part of the civil war that is roiling the Islamic world, and it will require all our cultural ingenuity to ensure that the criminals who shattered London's peace at rush hour this morning are not the ones who dictate the pace and rhythm of events from now on.

Two quick points: One, Europe is not becoming part of an Islamic civil war, Europe is now experiencing the effects (as seen throughout history wherever Islam encounters infidels) of Islam's Bloody Borders. Two, the aggressors always dictate the pace and rhythm of any conflict.

Finally, this from The Belmont Club:

The Al Qaeda have characterized the attack on London as 'punishment' for Britain's temerity to resist the inevitability of Islam. It is the kind of punishment these self-ordained masters of the universe are accustomed to meting out against harem women and insolent slaves. A few administered licks, and no doubt the cowardly kuffar will crawl back to his place. The tragedy is that Al Qaeda's perception is perfectly correct when applied to the Left, for whom no position is too supine, no degradation too shameful to endure; but incorrect for the vast majority of humans, in whom the instinct for self-preservation has not yet been extinguished. It will result in history's greatest case of mistaken identity; the mismatch that should never have happened. The enemy is even now dying at our feet, where we should kick him and kick him again.

I've heard of the Texas Air National Guard, but I ain't never heard of the Texas State Guard. (Hey, I can talk like that. After all, I wrote a country western song.)

Wednesday July 6, 2005

You know that the government is too big when you read stories like this:

The State Parks and Recreation Commission has assembled data showing that many blacks, for a variety of reasons, are not frequent users of the state's 250,000 acres of parkland, particularly for activities like camping. This, in a state with an abundance of natural beauty — from mountains to lakes, deserts and forests.

Do they really have nothing better to do than to assemble racial data of campers?

And there's anecdotal evidence, too. One former ranger, who worked at Deception Pass and other state parks that each hosted up to 400,000 visitors a year, reported seeing fewer than 50 blacks over a 10-year period.

Parks-commission officials say that while park use among all people of color is low, it is lowest among blacks. Through their Diversity Camping Program, they want to change whatever is keeping African Americans away: the specter of danger, the fear that small towns on the way to parks are unfriendly to blacks, or that camping and hiking and skiing are activities only white people do.

MEMRI--the Middle East Media Research Institute--has this quote (and clip) from a Muslim professor in the UAE:

Muslim: [The Israelites] have spread all over the world. Now Allah gathers them in this land. He brings them in groups from all countries of the world, in order to fulfill Allah's universal law: Judgment Day will come when Muslims fight the Jews, and the stone and the tree say: Oh, Muslim, oh servant of Allah, there's a Jew behind me, come and kill him. If the Jews were scattered throughout the world, how could we find them in order to fight them? The war between us and the Jews is a religious war. This is not a war over a path, a land or anything like that. The part of the Koran that was given at Mecca, before the Muslim even met the Jews, each chapter reveals who the Jews really are, their perversity and the danger they present. Our war with them is a religious war, and we must arm the nation with the weapon of faith.

But keep this in mind, would you want all Muslims to judge us based on the comments of Ward Churchill? FYI, there are those with evidence that Ward Churchill and Gloria Steinham are twins.

It's not enough that police officers confront danger every day. It's not enough that their every action is scrutinized by much of the public just waiting for an offense to use against them. But now, even when their actions are completely justified, some members of the public (I'm thinking it, but I really shouldn't write gutless liberals) want to denigrate them. Such is the case with Officer Phillip Bozarth. You see, he saves people for a living. He has saved many members of the San Diego community. Saved them from scumbags and punks, thieves and murderers. But, I suppose he's bagged his limit. Since he finally has five kills, some in the community say that's too many:

When veteran San Diego police Officer Phillip Bozarth shot and killed a 24-year-old man with a handgun in a Stockton neighborhood June 25, it marked the fifth person he has killed on the job in his 20-year career, police confirmed yesterday.

..."We don't want to see a sixth," said Mary Powers, national coordinator for the National Coalition for Police Accountability, a Chicago-based organization of religious, community, legal and progressive law enforcement representatives working to hold police accountable to their communities.

And those five kills don't even include instances such as these: separate recent incidents, Bozarth disarmed a man wielding a loaded, AR-15-type rifle and another with a loaded 9 mm pistol – both without firing his weapon or causing injuries. In February, Bozarth and another officer grabbed a man before he could jump from the San Diego-Coronado Bridge. In 1996, Bozarth arrested a man trying to strangle a woman with a rope inside a car and also arrested a woman wildly waving a gun at motorists and pedestrians.

Often times, these officers are at war with the street thugs in our cities. Many times, it's kill or be killed. People like Mary Powers just don't understand. Perhaps they would rather Officer Bozarth start "a dialogue" with these poor, underpriveliged individuals. Well Mary, sometimes when you're dealing with drug-crazed lunatics, they are not rational. Sometimes, the result is more like this:

Sgt. William McEntee, 43, who had been with the Kirkwood Police Department since 1981, died of gunshot wounds late Tuesday night at St. John's Mercy Medical Center in Creve Coeur, said Kirkwood Police Chief Jack Plummer. He was shot several times. Authorities say the suspect has McEntee's service weapon, a .40-caliber handgun, as well as the 9mm weapon used in the shooting.