Thursday, May 31, 2007
What do you do with people who conflate conservative Christians who disapprove same sex marriage with Islamic cultures who stone women to death or throw acid in their faces, or who equate the saccharine “Focus on the Family” with the Taliban? The idea of having a rational discussion with people who believe these things is as useful as discussing philosophy with the drug addled derelict sleeping it off on the park bench.
Jeff Goldstein at Protein Wisdom has a lengthy abstract of an article by Christina Hoff Sommers which discusses some of the truly bizarre things that these people actually believe.
And lest you think that they are a self-selected group of fringe kooks without influence beyond the fever swamps inhabited by the likes of Farrakhan and Rita X, you don’t know the power brokers in the feminist community.
They are the ones who “convicted” the Duke Lacrosse players before the investigation. They are the ones who, despite their exoneration, refuse to admit they were wrong. They are the Vanguard!
Read the whole thing.
The primary focus is on the “terror” at home. Katha Pollitt, a columnist at the Nation, talks of “the common thread of misogyny” connecting Christian Evangelicals to the Taliban:It is important to remember just how barbarous and cruel the Taliban were. Yet it is also important not to use their example to obscure or deny the common thread of misogyny that connects them with Focus on the Family and the Christian Coalition. . . .
In a similar vein, journalist Barbara Ehrenreich characterizes Christian evangelical movements as “Christian Wahhabism,” using the name of the sect that is the state religion of Saudi Arabia and the inspiration for Osama bin Laden. Eve Ensler, lionized author of The Vagina Monologues, makes the same point somewhat differently in her popular lecture “Afghanistan is Everywhere”:We all have different forms of enforced burqas. Every culture has it. Whether it’s an idea or a fascist tyranny of what women are supposed to look like--so that women go to the extremes of liposuction, anorexia and bulimia to achieve it--or whether it’s being covered in a burqa, we all have deep, profound, ongoing daily forms of oppression.
On most American campuses there are small coteries of self-described “vagina warriors” [hi, Amanda!] looking for ways to expose and make much of the ravages of patriarchy. Feminists like Pollitt, Ehrenreich, and Ensler can cite several decades of women’s studies research supporting the charge that our culture is ruinous for women. Many scholars—including Camille Paglia, Daphne Patai, Noretta Koertge, Diana Furchtgott-Roth, Christine Rosen, and myself—have questioned the quality of the findings and warned that the studies are twisted and unreliable. But academic feminists rarely engage with such criticism. They dismiss it as “backlash.”
Soon after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Katha Pollitt wrote the introduction to a book called Nothing Sacred: Women Respond to Religious Fundamentalism and Terror. It aimed to show that reactionary religious movements everywhere are targeting women. Says Pollitt:In Bangladesh, Muslim fanatics throw acid in the faces of unveiled women; in Nigeria, newly established shariah courts condemn women to death by stoning for having sex outside of wedlock. . . . In the United States, Protestant evangelicals and fundamentalists have forged a powerful right-wing political movement focused on banning abortion, stigmatizing homosexuality and limiting young people’s access to accurate information about sex.
Pollitt casually places “limiting young people’s access to accurate information about sex” and opposing abortion on the same plane as throwing acid in women’s faces and stoning them to death. Her hostility to the United States renders her incapable of distinguishing between private American groups that stigmatize gays and foreign governments that hang them. She has embraced a feminist philosophy that collapses moral categories in ways that defy logic, common sense, and basic decency.
Eve Ensler takes this line of reasoning to equally ludicrous lengths. In 2003 she gave a lecture at the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University in which, like Pollitt, she claimed that women everywhere are oppressed and subordinate:I think that the oppression of women is universal. I think we are bonded in every single place of the world. I think the conditions are exactly the same [her emphasis]. I think the nature of the oppression—whether it’s acid burning in one country, or female genital mutilation in another, or gang rapes in the parking lots in high schools of the suburbs—it’s the same idea. . . . The systematic global oppression of women is completely across the globe.
Though Ensler’s perspective is warped, her courage and desire to help are commendable. She went to Afghanistan during the reign of the Taliban and smuggled out now-famous footage of a terrified woman in a burqa being executed at close range by a man with an AK-47. Ensler has firsthand knowledge of the unique horrors of Islamic gender fascism. But her “feminist theory” obliterates distinctions between what goes on in Afghanistan and what goes on in Beverly Hills:I went from Beverly Hills where women were getting vaginal laser rejuvenation surgery--paying four thousand dollars to get their labias trimmed to make them symmetrical because they didn’t like the imbalance. And I flew to Kenya where [women were working to stop] the practice of female genital mutilation. And I said to myself, “What is wrong with this picture?”
A better question is: What is wrong with Eve Ensler? These two surgical phenomena are completely different in both scale and purpose. The number of American women who undergo “vaginal labial rejuvenation” is minuscule: There were 793 such procedures in 2005, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. By contrast, a World Health Organization 2000 fact sheet reports: “Today, the number of girls and women who have undergone female genital mutilation is estimated at between 100 and 140 million. It is estimated that each year, a further 2 million girls are at risk of undergoing FGM.”
The women who elect laser surgery, moreover, are voluntarily seeking relief from physical irregularities that cause them embarrassment or inhibit their sexual enjoyment. The practitioners of genital mutilation, in countries such as Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, and Somalia, believe that removing sensitive parts of the anatomy is the best way to control young women’s sexual urges and assure chastity. Genital cutting causes great pain and suffering and often permanently impairs a female’s capacity for sexual pleasure. Thus, the intentions of the handful of American adults who choose labial surgery for themselves are exactly the opposite of those of the African parents and elders who insist on cutting the genitals of millions of girls.
Given her capacity for conceptual confusion, it is perhaps not surprising that Ensler cites “gang rape in a suburban high school parking lot” to show how women in America are menaced. Yes, that is an atrocity. But it happens rarely, and America’s allegedly “misogynist” culture reacts to it with revulsion and severe punishments.
This is a story by Michael Yon that belongs in a book; full of conflict, drama, intrigue and derring-do action. You won’t read this in Time or Newsweek; definitely not in the NY Times; but it’s the story of how we can win in Iraq if we have more people like Lt Col Doug Crissman.
It’s a long read but worth every word.
The city of Hit (pronounced “heat”) is a spot of green in the desert on the western bank of the Euphrates. The temperature is steadily rising here as the weeks melt into the mirage of summer; the haze shimmering at about 115°F now. The air was blowing hot and dry through the city Tuesday morning 29 May, when I accompanied LTC Doug Crissman for another day of meetings with local leaders in Hit and surrounding towns in Anbar Province. Crissman and the soldiers of Task Force 2-7 Infantry under his command have been welcomed in the area of Hit for about the last one hundred days. Prior to February, Hit was one of the hottest little battlegrounds of the war, with almost daily gun battles crackling through the air, mortars exploding on the bases, and bombs cratering the roads.
But none of that noise punctuated a visit last Saturday, when LTC Crissman and I walked through the downtown portion of the city. Our several-mile stroll through the market—a veritable shopping mall for the area—was filled with men, women, and children of all ages, including one rotund boy furiously slurping an ice cream before it could drip away.
Hit could have swallowed us whole that day. Although there were vehicles nearby in radio contact, we had only two soldiers as guards during our stroll. But the people mostly just waved and smiled, or wanted to talk with Crissman, who stopped now and then to engage in conversations, all while the steam building inside the pressure cookers of our helmets soaked the pads in sweat.
Many people in Hit directly attribute the resurrection of this city in large part to the courage of Iraqi Police General Ibrahim Hamid Jaza (General Hamid), who took an aggressive stand against the Al Qaeda (AQI) terrorists who had brazenly made Anbar province a home base and slaughter pad with their marketplace car bombs, beheadings, and reputation for hiding bombs intended to kill parents in the corpses of dead children they’d gutted.
Over time, AQI provided ample demonstrations of their ruthless and reckless abuses of power over civilians, shooting people for using the Internet, or watching television, or other “moral transgressions” such as smoking in public. AQI’s claim of fundamentalist piety proved to be a thin veneer that was quickly eroded by blatant drug, alcohol and prostitute use. The people of Anbar rejected AQI, but AQI was still strong and well-armed, so rejection was only a first step.
AQI operatives are not amenable to change, so there was killing to be done. General Hamid was one of the brave souls who took an early stand and went for their throats. In doing so, he demonstrated that the terrorists were also vulnerable. Some soldiers in the Task Force 2-7 began to jokingly refer to the general as “Bufford Pusser” because Hamid literally carried a big stick. But AQI wasn’t laughing; they beheaded Hamid’s son on a soccer field in the center of Hit in 2005.
About a year ago coalition forces selected Hamid to be the District Chief of Police, confirming his status as a true hero to many Americans and Iraqis. Accordingly, recent signs suggesting that Hamid might have begun flying too close to the sun were a hard and grim reality for officers in both governments, as the evidence of his corruption began to accumulate like so much wax melted off strong wings. Hamid had earned his reputation for being ferocious against terrorists, which might suffice to explain the stunning impact when, without warning or notice, LTC Crissman arrested and detained the general Tuesday afternoon.
Read the whole thing.
Last week the United States Attorney for Minnesota held a press conference to annnounce the indictment of 25 defendants for operating an international sex trafficking ring whose hub was based in Minneapolis. Listening to the charges described at the press conference, I thought the crimes charge sounded like some kind of Third World nightmare that has erupted in our midst.
That is in fact what seems to have occurred. The gist of the indictment is that numerous women have been imported from Mexico and Central America and essentially held in bondage to work as sex slaves on behalf of the defendants. Seventeen of the 25 defendants are illegal aliens and all of the victims are illegal aliens.
Authorities from the various law enforcement agencies that participated in the investigation -- the St. Paul Police Department, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement -- attended the press conference. According to the indictment, the hub of the ring and most of its business sites were located in Minneapolis.
Yet the Minneapolis Police Department was conspicuous by its absence at the press conference. It had not participated in the investigation. It had apparently turned a blind eye to the alleged ring over the years it had been operating under its nose. And during the press conference Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and Police Chief Tim Dolan emailed the media to distance themselves from the indictment, reminding the media that Minneapolis authorities "will not enforce immigration policy." The St. Paul Pioneer Press story on the indictment quotes the Minneapolis Police Department spokesman Amelia Huffman:[W]e do not independently investigate, we do not detain, we do not arrest, when immigration violations are the principal issue. We are interested in making Minneapolis safe for all residents of the community, regardless of immigration status.
Twin Cities media have studiously avoided exploration of the anomalies represented by the pronouncements of Minneapolis's Mayor and law enforcement authorities. In her Star Tribune column today, however, Katherine Kersten asks the mayor what's happening here:
On Wednesday, Rybak acknowledged that the ordinance doesn't bar police from engaging in crime fighting just because immigration is involved. "When the issue is clearly prostitution, we will continue to stand strong against it," he said.
But wasn't prostitution the issue in the sex ring bust?
"The line between what is prostitution and what is immigration was blurry," Rybak replied.
Doing the booing Americans won't do
The United States government is on the verge of approving a mass amnesty to millions of illegal aliens — a plan pushed aggressively by meddling Mexican officials who reap billions of dollars in remittances (illegal aliens' earnings sent back to Mexico) without having to lift a finger to clean up their own country.
And the thanks we get? Internationally televised public humiliation.
On Monday night, the beautiful young woman who represented America in the Miss Universe pageant was booed and mocked as she competed on stage in Mexico City. Rachel Smith, 22, did her best to respond with grace and dignity during the Top Five finalists' interview segment as the audience disrupted the event.
And here's Powerline's take on this issue:
In his post from earlier today, John comments on the anti-Americanism on display in Mexico City during the Miss Universe pageant. But one need not journey to Mexico to find displays of anti-Americanism among some Mexicans and Mexican-Americans. One can find it at soccer matches here in the U.S.
It's probably unrealistic to expect illegal immigrants and even first generation legal immigrants from Mexico, El Salvador, etc. to root for the U.S. when they play the immigrant's native country. And, given the intensity of the soccer rivalry between U.S. and Mexico, the vehemence of the pro-Mexicans who live here isn't surprising either. But mass booing of our national anthem and harassment of U.S. fans, as occurred in a U.S. - Mexico match in Los Angeles, is going too far. It was also discouraging when, here in Washington D.C., Salvadoran fans booed our anthem and turned against the local team because it had been forced by salary cap considerations to trade a star player from El Salvador.
One cannot base public policy on what happens at beauty pageants or soccer matches. Better instruction can be found in statistics about drop-out and graduation rates, participation rates in violent gangs, teen-pregnancies rates, and the like. Unfortunately, as Heather Mac Donald shows, the picture of our Hispanic recent-immigrant population that emerges from this data isn't pretty either.
There’s a little hustler in every politician. But sometimes there’s a little politician in a hustler. Such is the case with John Edwards.
Last week, we learned that Edwards received $55,000 to give a speech, “Poverty, the Great Moral Issue Facing America,” at the University of California, Davis. The poor students who attended were charged more than $17 a ticket. Earlier this month, it was reported that despite the fact he denounces predatory lending and subprime mortgages for the poor, Edwards made nearly $500,000 as a consultant to a hedge fund involved in that business.
The former senator defended his gig on the grounds that he took the job to learn how financial markets relate to poverty. This is a bit like saying you frequent brothels so you can learn where babies come from.
But here’s the hilarious part: Edwards said he didn’t know the fund was involved in subprime lending. If he was there to learn about poverty and finance, how did he miss this salient fact? He must be a slow learner. No wonder his former political consultant, Bob Shrum, calls him “a Clinton who hadn’t read the books.”
Business Week magazine reports that Edwards launched a poverty center that conveniently worked out of the same office as his political-action committee. The nonprofit center spent a staggering 70 percent of the money it raised on a speaking tour for Edwards and on salaries for staffers who in short order just happened to join his presidential campaign. This gives new meaning to the term “poverty pimp.”
A few years ago, when it was reported that “virtuecrat” Bill Bennett, the former secretary of Education, liked to gamble in Las Vegas, columnist Michael Kinsley spoke for much of establishment liberalism when he declared, “Bennett has been exposed as a humbug artist who ought to be pelted off the public stage.” I thought this was unfair, as Bennett never inveighed against gambling, nor did his church consider it a sin. But certainly Edwards, who gets choked up and misty-eyed from his own relentlessly recounted stump speech about “two Americas,” is more of a humbug artist than Bennett ever was. You would think that when Edwards looks in the mirror in one of his new, 28,000-square-foot house’s six bathrooms, inspecting whether it’s time for another $400 haircut, he might feel the slightest twinge of conscience about his us-versus-them shtick.
Now, of course, this doesn’t mean that he doesn’t care about poverty, and there’s certainly nothing wrong with making money. He launched his fortune as an ambulance-chasing lawyer, after all, so he’s good at convincing people, starting with himself, that he’s on the side of the angels. But the story he tells to prove he’s not a hypocrite is typically phony. For example, his 2004 presidential campaign highlighted the humble little house he led people to believe he grew up in. But the small home touted in commercials was Edwards’s residence until he reached the ripe old age of one. Then, his father the mill worker was promoted to management and the family moved into a more expensive home that never appeared in his campaign ads.
It’s not that Edwards is a liar, it’s that he’s a toothy door-to-door salesman, seemingly hawking the issues when he’s really just hawking himself.
When Edwards was preparing for his first run for president, he struck the pose of a southern moderate. The National Journal noted that his voting record set him “comfortably apart from Senate liberals.” Now that he’s out of office (it’s doubtful that he could have won reelection) he’s recast himself as the election season's premier anti-warrior. Last week, Edwards gave a major foreign-policy speech in which he ridiculed the very idea of a “war on terror” as nothing more than a “bumper sticker slogan.” Of course, until recently, he had no problem with the concept. As Sen. John Kerry’s running mate, he campaigned on the claim that Iraq was distracting us from the real war on terror. Before that, he recanted his vote in favor of the Iraq war.
By the Numbers
2.BOUNCE BACK - In 8 of 9 bear markets producing at least a 20% decline in the S&P 500 in the last half century (1957-2007), the stock market eventually recovered 100% of the loss sustained, i.e., going above the previous bull market high. The recovery from the 9th bear market, a 49% tumble that ended on 10/09/02, was nearly completed last week but it ended on Monday just 2 points short. The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index of 500 widely held stocks that is generally considered representative of the US stock market (source: BTN Research).
3. IMPATIENT - The average length of time that an American investor held an individual stock before 1970 was greater than 5 years. The average length of time that an investor holds an individual stock today is less than 10 months (source: BusinessWeek).
4. DOMESTIC FROTH - Over the 2 years leading up to its all-time closing high of 5049 set on 3/10/00, the NASDAQ Composite nearly tripled in value, gaining +189%. The NASDAQ Composite is an unmanaged index of securities traded on the NASDAQ system (source: BTN Research).
5. FOREIGN FROTH - The Chinese Shanghai stock index has nearly quadrupled in value over the last 2 years. From its closing price of 1072 on 5/25/05 to its close of 4180 last Friday, the foreign stock index has gained +290%. The Shanghai index is an unmanaged index that is generally considered representative of the Chinese stock market. These international securities involve additional risks including currency fluctuations, differing financial accounting standards and possible political and economic volatility (source: BTN Research).
6. ON THE BANDWAGON - Chinese citizens opened +160,000 new investment accounts each day last month (i.e., 4.8 million new accounts for the month) in an effort to participate in their rising stock market (source: USA Today).
7. ALMOST - The S&P 500 came within 2 points of an all-time closing high last Monday. From last Friday’s close, the NASDAQ would have to gain +12% annually for 6 years to set an all-time closing high (source: BTN Research).
8. US vs. THEM - The Chinese Shanghai stock index is trading at a 43 price-earnings ratio today. At the peak of the tech stock bubble in March 2000, the 100 largest capitalized stocks in the NASDAQ Composite were trading at a 172 price-earnings ratio. A company’s price-to-earnings ratio is equal to a company’s stock price divided by its earnings per share and when compared over time may provide some insight into undervalued and overvalued stocks (source: USA Today, Wall Street Journal and NASDAQ).
9. COMPARE THE INDEXES - Both the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ Composite are cap-weighted indexes, i.e., the larger the individual stock, the greater is its weight in the index’s calculation. Overall the S&P 500 is nearly 4 times as large (in terms of market capitalization) as the NASDAQ, even though the S&P 500 has less than one-sixth as many stocks (source: NASDAQ, Wilshire).
10. ONLY RATIONAL DECISIONS HERE - 65% of American investors do not believe their emotions impact the investment decisions they make (source: Prudential).
11. OLD AGE - 30% of American workers believe they are “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to live to age 95 (source: Employee Benefit Research Institute).
12. STILL MAKING PAYMENTS - 64% of homeowners between the ages of 55-64 still have mortgage debt on their primary residence (source: Center for Retirement Research, Federal Reserve).
13. MORE THAN HALF - 56% of Americans are either “very worried” or “moderately worried” about whether they have saved enough money for retirement, down from 60% last year (source: Gallup).
14. FED BOARD - President Bush intends to nominate Elizabeth Duke and Larry Klane (replacing the retired Mark Olson and Susan Bies) to the Fed’s 7-person Board of Governors (source: White House).
15. HAIL TO THE CHIEF - The next President of the United States (# 44) will take office on 1/20/09 or 600 days from this Thursday (5/31/07). George Bush will occupy the White House for 2,922 days during his 8 years as our nation’s 43rd President (source: BTN Research).
Americans — at least really stupid Americans like George Bush — believe the natural state of the world is to have individual self-determination, human rights, the rule of law and a robust democratic economy. On this view, most of the existing world and almost all of world history is a freakish aberration.
In fact, the natural state of the world is Darfur. The freakish aberration is America and the rest of the Anglo-Saxon world.
The British Empire once spread the culture of prosperity around the globe — Judeo-Christian values, tolerance, equality, private property and the rule of law. All recipients of the British Empire's largesse benefited, but the empire's most successful colony was the United States.
At the precise moment in history when the U.S. has abandoned any attempt to transmit Anglo-Saxon virtues to its own citizens, much less to immigrants, George Bush wants to grant citizenship to hordes of immigrants who are here precisely because they are fleeing cultures that are utterly dysfunctional and ruinous for the humans who live in them.
MR. GRIFFIN: I have no doubt that global -- that a trend of global warming exists. I am not sure that it is fair to say that it is a problem we must wrestle with. To assume that it is a problem is to assume that the state of earth's climate today is the optimal climate, the best climate that we could have or ever have had and that we need to take steps to make sure that it doesn't change. First of all, I don't think it's within the power of human beings to assure that the climate does not change, as millions of years of history have shown, and second of all, I guess I would ask which human beings - where and when - are to be accorded the privilege of deciding that this particular climate that we have right here today, right now is the best climate for all other human beings. I think that's a rather arrogant position for people to take.
Here's the source quote.
Labels: global warming
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
This crime leads to an interesting question: what makes a crime a hate crime?
We are assured that when James Byrd was dragged to death behind a truck by three white savages, he was the victim of a hate crime. What made that a hate crime? Was it the race of the victim and the murderers? Was it the brutality of the killing? Was it the senselessness of the murder?
I want people who insist that the Christian Newsome murderers is not a hate crime to tell me why a carjacking - a crime that is a heart a car theft – that turns into an orgy of gang rape and murder is not motivated by hate. You don’t gang rape and murder two young people over an extended period of time and then abandon the car, if you are looking to steal a car.
What was it that morphed a car theft into an orgy of rape and murder?
I can understand local officials ducking and weaving to avoid aggravating racial tensions. I can understand local and national media having a problem because this kind of thing is not what their template is designed for.
But isn’t there one honest voice among them?
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
IT'S MORE DIFFICULT TO RE-WRITE HISTORY IF YOU DON'T CONTROL THE MEDIA
It's a little more difficult when you are not in total control of the information channels.
For a history of what America's leaders said before the Iraq war, click HERE.
Monday, May 28, 2007
Everyone wants to sound reasonable and be the chap who charts the middle course between the Scylla of open borders and the Charybdis of mass deportation. But these are not equivalent dangers. The Charybdis of mass deportation is a mythical monster: It does not exist. It will never exist. No politician is arguing for it, and no U.S. agency is capable of accomplishing it. Indeed, even non-mass deportation does not exist. Go on, try it. Go to your local immigration office and say: Hello, boys. Here I am. I'm an illegal immigrant, got no right to be here, been breaking the law for 20 years, but I've seen the light and I want you to deport me back to Mexico, Yemen, you name it. The immigration guys will say: Leave your name and address and we'll get back to you in a decade or three.
But the Scylla of open borders does exist. It's the reality of the situation. What else would you call it when a population the size of Belgium's (the lowball estimate) or Australia's (the upper end) moves onto your land? And with the connivance of multiple state agencies, not to mention those municipalities that proudly declare themselves to be "sanctuary cities?"
Read the whole thing.
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Two young white kids out on a date robbed, gang raped and murdered: no big deal. Black hooker accuses white jocks of rape – national media circus.
The Knoxville News Sentinel has a story by Jamie Satterfield on the Christian – Newsome rape/slayings and the hurt feelings of the MSM show through. The story is all about the gruesome details that turn out – according to unnamed “authorities” – not to be true.
For example, the story that “Christian was held captive and repeatedly gang-raped for four days before her body was found inside a garbage can in one of the suspect's Chipman Street rental house. “ According to Satterfield’s unnamed sources that’s not true at all.
“As it turned out, Christian, though repeatedly raped, was dead within 24 hours of her abduction. “
Whew, that’s better. Twenty four hours of rape and torture are a lot better than four days of same.
Then there were “claims that Newsom and Christian were sexually mutilated.”
“They weren't, authorities say. “ Who these authorities are, Satterfield does not say. In fact, none of the “corrections” to the original stories are sourced to anyone except the ever-present “authorities.”
Then we have this:
“There also have been persistent claims that Christian was dismembered. As late as last week, a local television station on its Web site reported that Christian's body had been dismembered and found in "five trash bags." The fact is, Christian's intact body was wrapped in five trash bags. “
OK, so she was not cut up after she was murdered. That’s a relief.
Near the end of the story we get:
“They have unearthed nothing to suggest Christian and Newsom were targeted because of their race, according to law enforcers.”
"There's nothing whatsoever that indicates any hate crime," said John Gill, special counsel to Knox County District Attorney General Randy Nichols. "There are things that really, coincidentally, would prove just the opposite."
As is typical in this case, he would not elaborate.
And this from the Public Defender, the man responsible for getting the murderers off:
“Knox County Public Defender Mark Stephens finds himself a bit mystified at the notion that the slayings, though horrific, should have rated as national news.
"I refuse to believe these guys were laying in wait. It seems to me unlikely that the race of the victims had anything to do with this crime," he said. "It seems to me when we read about a black defendant shooting a black person in the projects, nobody gets upset about it.
"Why is this (case) worthy of national news coverage?" Stephens asked. "Unfortunately, this probably happens in major metropolitan areas every month."
Mr. Stephens may have a point about Knoxville, according to crime statistics; Knoxville has significantly more crime of all kinds than the national average.
While there were 18 murders in a population of about 175,000 in 2003, I doubt if double gang-rape and murder are that common in Knoxville – even in the projects.
But that really is not the issue. It’s not about the crime, it’s about the reporting. Newspapers and other media sources are a “news hole” that must be filled so that people will read or watch long enough to read the advertizing. That is why the “news hole” is filled with violence and sex. It’s what attracts customers.
That’s why we get stories about the “rape” of a stripper by jocks: as long as the stripper is black and the jocks are white. If the rapee is white and the raper is black, there's barely a whisper in the MSM.
That’s why we get stories about Paris Hilton and teens who disappear on class trips to the Islands.
So what could be juicier than the abduction, rape and murder of an attractive young couple? What could better fill that “news hole” and attract readers?
The answer is “nothing.”
So why did it not fill that hole?
It could be that the MSM has suddenly developed a new set of morals and ethics. It could be that they eschew sensationalism and instead begin reporting all that’s right with the world.
Sorry, I must have had you going for a minute.
No, the MSM have a “template” as Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit says. They really believe that white jocks are just waiting for an opportunity to rape black strippers. And while they may, in their heart of hearts believe that blacks can abduct, rape and kill a young white couple, they are not willing to make a big deal about it because it does not fit the “white master raping black slave” template.
What's why what's being called "The Second Duke Rape Case" is getting attention on the internet but not in the "legitimate" MSM.
The members of the MSM are the most race conscious tribe in the world. It shows up in what is covered, and what is not covered. It even shows up in the Iraq war. The NY Times has over 60 successive front page stories on Abu Ghraib. It had one story on the two American soldiers who were abducted and tortured by Arab terrorists in Iraq to such an extent that DNA had to be used to identify the bodies. And why were these two not worth more than one story? There were certainly families to interview and questions to ask about how people could do this sort of thing to fellow human beings. But nothing … no stories followed.
One of the reasons was that the editors of the Times really don’t believe that people who are not like them are fully human. For that reason, they don’t hold them to civilized standards. After all, do you blame a wolf for attacking sheep? It’s what they do. Don’t make a big deal over it. Nothing to see ... move along.
And keep in mind that the MSM tribe, like any tribe, punishes people who don’t conform. Make a big deal over a group of blacks abducting, raping and killing an attractive white couple and you will be asked why you are siding with white bigots. Don’t you realize that you are contributing to white racist stereotypes? Which is what a lot of Satterfield’s story is all about.
Satterfield is not covering the crime, she is covering the story and explaining why the media won’t touch it.
Her reasons: it’s not a big deal, it happens every day, some (white) racists are running with it, and it’s not a race crime; the “authorities” and the perps said so.
And the Duke “rape” case? Now that the case has fallen apart, forget we said anything. We don’t want to stir up racial tensions. Right?
UPDATES: Thanks to Nicholas Stix: HERE
Satterfield only seems to be able to find white racists who are making use of this crime. Here's a link to black racists who are also focussed on it. They are celebrating the crime:
"We're celebrating underprivileged Knoxville blacks who victimize privileged Knoxville whites"
Welcome visitors. Please look around and sample some other goodies.
Saturday, May 26, 2007
The Group of 88’s ad did not include a list of all 88 Duke faculty members who signed onto the statement. But it did specifically assert that five Duke academic departments (Romance Studies; Psychology: Social and Health Sciences; Art, Art History, and Visual Studies; Classical Studies; and Asian & African Languages & Literature) as well as 10 academic programs formally endorsed the statement.
It is hard to overstate how unusual such an endorsement is. Academic departments rarely sign onto statements that do not directly deal with departmental concerns. That nearly 20 percent of a school’s arts and sciences departments would endorse a statement such as that produced by the Group of 88 is extraordinary. These departmental (and program) endorsements gave the statement added heft—perhaps explaining why the statement’s principal author, Wahneema Lubiano, included the names of the relevant departments in the text.
How could it be, as occurred in each of the five departments above, that a majority of a department’s professors did not sign onto the ad individually, but then took the far more significant step of supporting a formal departmental endorsement of the statement?
Well, it turns out, they didn’t.
In some, and perhaps all, of the five departments, no vote to sign onto the ad ever occurred. There was no informal polling of department members, either. Some, and perhaps all, of the departments listed as signing onto the Group of 88’s statement did not, in fact, ever endorse the ad.
So It seems that there was some lying going on. Read the whole thing.
The latest outrage is taking place in Memphis, Tennessee. Eight years ago, the biological parents of baby Anna Mae, Shaoqiang and Quin Luo He, gave up their infant daughter. Jerry and Louise Baker became her foster parents and have raised the child since 1999. You still remember 1999, don’t you? Bill Clinton was occupying the White House, the Twin Towers were still standing, and nobody but her parents had even heard of Paris Hilton. If you think that was a long time ago, imagine how long it would seem if it were your entire life.
Now, the Hes have decided that they want Anna Mae snatched away from everything and everyone she’s ever known. And, naturally, the members of the Tennessee Supreme Court agree. If I were running things, it would take me all of five minutes to determine that these judicial guttersnipes were aiding and abetting in what is clearly nothing more than a court- sanctioned kidnapping. Then I’d send the bunch of them off to the salt mines, there to ponder the error of their ways.
Oh, did I forget to mention that, on top of everything else, Shaoqiang and Qin Luo He are illegal aliens?
Mrs. Baker says, “Our sweet, loving little girl is full of anger, and she’s yelling that nobody understands her.”
On the other hand, David Siegel, the attorney for the Hes, accused the Bakers of attempting to stir up public sentiment, ruining what “has otherwise been a very peaceful transition.”
First, I’d ask, which of these two people do you actually believe? Next, I’d like to know how it is that some lawyers aren’t compelled, like lepers in the old days, to ring little bells and say, “Unclean…unclean” whenever they appear in public. I’d also like to know who marries these people, and why.
In conclusion, let me merely say that the blindfold on Justice is intended to be taken symbolically, not literally. Justice, after all, is supposed to be blind, not stupid.
I got my start in Washington in the early 1990s as a researcher at the American Enterprise Institute working for Ben Wattenberg. A self-taught demographer, Ben also happened to be — and remains — one of America’s foremost champions of liberal (others would say “lax”) immigration policies.
Ben is a brilliant man with many lasting accomplishments to his credit. But one legacy has always grated at me, even as it has seeped into the conventional wisdom on certain parts of the Right. One of Ben’s favorite rhetorical flourishes is to compare America to a giant cocktail party. He makes the comparison often, and it’s caught on among congressmen and think-tankers. It goes something like this: “Imagine you are in a giant ballroom where 1,000 people are gathered for a Washington cocktail party,” he’d say (I’m paraphrasing), “and into the room walk three Mexicans. Those three Mexicans represent the proportion of the U.S. population that immigrants add each year. There is little evidence these immigrants are spoiling the party.”
While I agree with Ben on many things, I think it might be worthwhile, given the current debate over immigration, to explain why this analogy is so wrong.
First and most obviously: America simply isn’t a cocktail party. And it probably doesn’t help the cause to tell people in Peoria to lighten up by imagining themselves at a ballroom soiree in the nation’s capital. Lots of taxpayers are already overly suspicious that folks in Washington are too blasé about things “normal Americans” care about. Saying don’t worry and drink your champagne doesn’t make it better.
At the cocktail party, the guests don’t fear a few new arrivals will take their jobs, dampen their wages, or overturn their communities. The reality is quite different.
The inherent math of the analogy is deeply flawed, too. It assumes a finite time period and a single input. To be accurate, the proportion of new arrivals needs to be cumulative. So if each year equals, say, ten minutes at the cocktail party, within an hour you’ve got 18 mostly poor, non-English-speaking strangers. In three hours you’ve got 54.
Read the whole thing.
The White House communications operation is in overdrive promoting its immigration reform proposal. I'm getting three or more emails per day on the subject. I feel frustrated that the White House failed, in my view, to push this hard for initiatives I favor, or when it came to defending itself on Iraq.I oppose the bill ... AND I'M AN IMMIGRANT!
I'm also frustrated that the White House fails to treat seriously the concerns conservatives have about its immigration package. The tendency instead is to misrepresent or demean our concerns and, to some extent, demonize us.
We see some of this in the latest column by Michael Gerson, who until recently was a key aide to President Bush. The title of Gerson's piece is "Letting Fear Rule"; the subtitle is "Nativism Is a Recipe for Long-Term GOP Losses." So before Gerson even gets to his analysis, conservatives with whom he disagrees stand accused of nativism and being ruled by fear.
It doesn't get any better once Gerson starts arguing.
Peggy Noonan has the best argument in the Wall Street Journal article which I have excerpted in full because it's in the "paid" edition.
Recently, the Economist, published in Britain, noted that "an organisation which devotes more pages in its annual report to human-rights abuses in Britain and America than those in Belarus and Saudi Arabia cannot expect to escape doubters' scrutiny." Other critics, including law professor at Harvard, Alan Dershowitz, and the U.S.-based Capital Research Center, have been more pointed, providing evidence of Amnesty's systematic bias and reports based largely on claims by carefully selected "eyewitnesses" in Colombia, Gaza, and Lebanon.
As a result of revelations of other "do-good" organizations perpetrating hoaxes to vilify Israel and America, no one is above scrutiny.
Labels: biased reporting
The good, wise folks at Blog P.I. tell me that if I write a nasty blog post about Ron Paul, I might get lots of comments. So let’s take that theory out for a test drive.
First, let’s get their attention: Ron Paul Ron Paul Ron Paul Ron Paul Ron Paul. And, for good measure, Ron Pall.
Second, let’s say this: Ron Paul is not a real Republican.
Third, let’s wonder this: Is Ron Paul crazy?
This sounds like fun. We residents of Tidewater Virginia have a radio talk show host by the name of Tony Macrini. He is a Libertarian with a capital "L." Since the start of the Iraq war he has become impossible to listen to because he has become a johnny-one-note; it's all anti-war all the time.
He is (or was, I have not really listened to him for over a year, ever since my son steered me "Tommy and Rumble") a big supporter of Ron Paul. I would like to know his opinion of Ron Paul now. But, frankly, I don't care enough to listen to him and find out.
That said, Ron Paul has done a lot of damage to the Libertarian Right. He has made them look like fools. He's a nut, and I'm amazed that he has managed to keep his seat in the House.
Slow Down and Absorb
By PEGGY NOONAN
May 26, 2007; Page P14
Why do people want to come here? Same reasons as a hundred years ago. For a job. For opportunity. To rise. To be in a place where one generation you can be a bathroom attendant at a Brooklyn store and the next your boy can be the star of "Ted Mack's Amateur Hour," with everyone in the neighborhood listening on the radio, or, today, "American Idol," with everyone watching and a million-dollar contract in the wings. To be in a place of weird magic where the lightning strikes. Boom: You got the job in the restaurant. Crack: Now you're the manager. Boom: You've got a mortgage, you have a home.
"Never confuse movement with action," said Ernest Hemingway. But America gives you both. What an awake place. And what a tortured and self-torturing one. Your own family will be embarrassed by you if you don't rise, if you fall, if you fail. And the country itself is never perfect enough for its countrymen; we're on a constant Puritan self-healing mission, a constant search-and destroy-mission for our nation's blemishes -- racism, sexism, ethnocentrism, out damn spots.
I asked myself a question this week and realized the answer is "Only one." The question is: Have I ever known an immigrant to America who's lazy? I have lived on the East Coast all my life, mostly in New York, and immigrants both legal and illegal have been and are part of my daily life, from my childhood when they surrounded me to an adulthood in which they, well, surround me. And the only lazy one I knew was a young woman, 20, European, not mature enough to be fully herself, who actually wanted to be a good worker but found nightlife too alluring and hangovers too debilitating.
But she was the only one. And I think she went home.
Everyone else who comes here works hard, grindingly hard, and I admire them. But it's more than that, I love them and I'm rooting for them. When I see them in church (it is Filipino women who taught me the right posture for prayer; Central Americans helped teach me the Bible) I want to kiss their hands. I want to say, "Thank you." They have enriched my life, and our country's.
Naturally I hope the new immigration bill fails. It is less a bill than a big dirty ball of mischief, malfeasance and mendacity, with a touch of class malice, and it's being pushed by a White House that is at once cynical and inept. The bill's Capitol Hill supporters have a great vain popinjay's pride in their own higher compassion. They are inclusive and you're not, you cur, you gun-totin' truckdriver's-hat-wearin' yahoo. It's all so complex, and you'd understand this if you weren't sort of dumb.
But it's not so complex. The past quarter-century an unprecedented wave of illegal immigrants has crossed our borders. The flood is so great that no one -- no one -- can see or fully imagine all the many implications, all the country-changing facts of it. No one knows exactly what uncontrolled immigration is doing and will do to our country.
So what should we do?
We should stop, slow down and absorb. We should sit and settle. We should do what you do after eating an eight-course meal. We should digest what we've eaten.
We should close our borders. We should do whatever it takes to close them tight and solid. Will that take the Army? Then send the Army. Does it mean building a wall? Then build a wall, but the wall must have doors, which can be opened a little or a lot down the road once we know where we are. Should all legal immigration stop? No. We should make a list of what our nation needs, such as engineers and nurses, and then admit a lot of engineers and nurses. We should take in what we need to survive and flourish.
As we end illegal immigration, we should set ourselves to the Americanization of the immigrants we have. They haven't only joined a place of riches, it's a place of meaning. We must teach them what it is they've joined and why it is good and what is expected of them and what is owed. We stopped Americanizing ourselves 40 years ago. We've got to start telling the story of our country again.
As to the eight or 10 or 12 or 14 million illegals who are here -- how interesting that our government doesn't know the number -- we should do nothing dramatic or fraught or unlike us. We should debate what to do, at length. Debate isn't bad. There's a lot to say. We can all join in. We should do nothing extreme, only things that are commonsensical.
Here is the truth: America has never deported millions of people, and America will never deport millions of people. It's not what we do. It's not who we are. It's not who we want to be. The American people would never accept evening news pictures of sobbing immigrants being torn from their homes and put on a bus. We wouldn't accept it because we have hearts, and as much as we try to see history in the abstract, we know history comes down to the particular, to the sobbing child in the bus. We don't round up and remove. Nor should we, tomorrow, on one of our whims, grant full legal status and a Cadillac car. We take it a day at a time. We wait and see what's happening. We do the small discrete things a nation can do to make the overall situation better. For instance: "You commit a violent crime? You are so out of here." And, "Here, let me help you learn English."
Let's take time and find out if the immigrants who are here see their wages click up and new benefits kick in as the endless pool stops expanding. It would be good to see them gain. Let's find out if it's true that Americans won't stoop to any of the jobs illegals do. I don't think it is. Years ago I worked in a florist shop removing the thorns from roses. It was painful work and I was happy to do it, and I am very American. I was a badly paid waitress in the Holiday Inn on Route 3 in New Jersey.
The young will do a great deal, and not only the young. The dislike for Americans evinced by the Americans-won't-do-hard-work crowd is, simply, astonishing, and shameful. It says more about the soft and ignorant lives they lived in Kennebunkport and Greenwich than it does about the American people.
Digest, absorb, teach. Settle in, settle down, protect our country.
Happy Memorial Day.
Friday, May 25, 2007
INHOFE OPENING STATEMENT: The Issue of the Potential Impacts of Global Warming on Recreation and the Recreation Industry"
Thank you for having this hearing today, Madam Chairman. I have to say, however, that we seem to have hearing after hearing after hearing on climate change – indeed, this is the Committee's second one this week alone – but we don’t seem to actually discuss legislation. While other Committees without jurisdiction on this issue attempt to write our nation’s global warming policies, this Committee sits idly by talking about tangential issues. I believe that if we do wrestle with actual legislation, then the folly of cap-and-trade carbon legislation will become apparent.
The recreation industry’s true threats come not from climate change – which has always changed and will always change – but from the so-called global warming ‘solutions’ being proposed by government policymakers. Misguided efforts to ‘solve’ global warming threaten to damage the travel and recreation industry. In short, it is a direct threat America’s way of life. If we cannot fly to remote locations, and if few automobiles are capable of pulling boats, jet skies, and campers, and if RVs become a thing of the past as environmentalists would like, then minor climate fluctuations will have little impact on recreation because Americans will not have the means to recreate.
Read the rest.
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Honor killings of women are all too common in Arab culture, and, even more importantly are not dissuaded by Islam. Here is a graphic video of an honor killing (don't watch it unless you are prepared to be sick) .
Or, See here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here-- I could go on and on...about FGM (discussed here and here); or about the brutality of the Taliban and the desperate attempts that enjoy the sanction of Islam to subjugate women, dehumanize them, and cover up any hint of their evil sexuality so that it doesn't "defile" others.
If there was ever in history a better example of the paranoid fear of female sexuality, I can't think of it. You don't have to be much of an expert on Islam or Muslim culture to be able to observe that it has evolved into a societal structure whose primary purpose is to contain and manage female sexuality.This containment has not only become a key aspect of the worship of their god; but it also is a key factor in individual personality development; as well as the main pollutant of all possible social interactions within the culture.
The men of Islam are obsessed with sex beyond even the wildest imaginings of the Western male's mind. And the obsession is far from healthy and even further from reality.
We frequently joke about men's preoccupation with sex and female body parts in the West, but our fascination with "T&A" is nothing when you consider that the Muslim world is literally consumed by female sexuality and with their fear of it. It is ironic that both Muslim men and women are under the mistaken impression that Western society is oversexualized compared to them, when in fact, it is practically impossible to be more obsessed with sexual matters than they are in Muslim communities.
Consider for a moment a culture that would prefer to let young girls die in a burning building than to risk having them run out of said building not clothed in properly modest dress; and tell me that such a society is less preoccupied with matters of sex than we are in the West.
Enormous effort goes into veiling women, dressing women modestly, silencing women, covering women's bodies, punishing women, controlling women, reviling women, humiliating women, beating women, subjugating women, avoiding the dishonor of women, keeping women uneducated, policing women, infantilizing women--in short, dehumanizing women in every way possible -- all under the guise of "protecting" and "honoring" them as they relegate them to animal-like status.
The women in this misogynistic Islam are brainwashed from birth into thinking that this cultural preoccupation somehow is necessary and that it "liberates" them in some bizarre manner.
Amazingly, this medieval culture has grasped the fundamentals of both Orwellian and postmodern rhetorical rationalizations, that are so prominent in certain intellectual quarters within our own culture! I have heard the canned rationalizations coming from their lips of muslim women myself; and they all claim that it frees them from having to be "sexual objects."
On the contrary, in Islamic society that is apparently the only role open to women. That, and breeders for the jihad.
This societal psychopathology poisons all interactions between the genders; takes up an incredible amount of time and effort in so-called "intellectual" circles and is the subject of religious edicts and innumerable rules and strictures on women's behavior and in the religious and social life; and causes the pseudoscientific rantings of arrogantly pathetic men (like the one above) who try to justify their misogyny so that they don't have to deal with the reality of their frightened and impotent masculinity.Women become mere possessions-vessels/repositories of the impotent and inadequate male's honor. That men and women could relate equally in every sphere of human endeavor is a concept that is so alien and so threatening; I suspect it is what partly drives the rage the males feel toward western culture in general.
Without the subjugated woman, the entire house of cards of Islam and Arab culture will come tumbling down. And with at least 50% of their population de-humanized, is it at all surprising that Islamic culture wherever it has taken root inevitably evolves into backward, primitive, violent, and non-productive societies?
I have said it before and I will say it again here: the treatment of women under Islam is not only the key to understanding the pathology of the culture, but also the key to developing an antidote to its most poisonous and toxic elements.
Unveiling the women of Islam and eliminating their second-class status; empowering them in the oppressive Islamic countries where their individuality and self-expression has been crushed-- may cause a ripple effect that could eventually alter a family structure that currently encourages the development of generation after generation of dysfunctional and pathological men and women.
What seems most characteristic about the type of Islam practiced in the Middle East today (and being exported around the world) is that its attitude toward women most certainly has no relationship to reality. Reality is indeed a "mistake" in their eyes, and they fully intend to rectify it--no matter how many deaths and lives are sacrificed to their perverted religious ideology.
Psychiatrists generally refers to this state as "psychotic" and "delusional".It has been argued (and there is a great deal of merit in the argument, in my opinion) that Islamist terror can be thought of in part, at least, as a response to sexual rage, frustration, and the humiliation of being connected to a "degraded mother." Thus the men in the culture must constantly assert their masculinity, defend their masculine "honor", and strike out in rage against any who "shame" them. This is apparent in the sexual mutilation of terror victims who are perceived as "inferior" by the Islamists, and on a par with women of their own culture. It is also seen in the Freudian symbolism of the barbaric act of beheading; as well as in the ubiquitous rape of non-muslim women around the world.
Read the whole thing.
On December 9th, 1981, Danny Faulkner was a Philadelphia police officer who was murdered by Mumia Abu-Jamal. In 1982 Mumia was afforded a trial by his peers which led to his conviction and the application of the death sentence. In 1989 the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court upheld his conviction, which they also did in 1995, 1996, and 1997. He was even given an opportunity to raise new evidence. He then moved onto the Federal courts and in 2001 the judge upheld the conviction and rejected 28 of 29 defense arguments.
And the circus continues.
Continuing to follow the Christian/Newsom murder story, local TV station VLT8 has a new video interview with the family of Chris Newsom.
And John Leo on the Politics of News.
Channon Christian, 21, and Christopher Newsom, 23, were out on a dinner date in Knoxville, Tenn., on January 6, when they were carjacked, kidnapped, raped, tortured, sexually mutilated, and killed.
Despite the press's taste for dramatic crimes, even crimes that do not involve missing blondes in Aruba, the story got almost no publicity. Conservative bloggers, who are beginning to buzz about the case, think they know why: the couple was white and the five suspects arrested in the case are black.
Compromise is incessantly praised, and has produced the proposed immigration legislation. But compromise is the mother of complexity, which, regarding immigration, virtually guarantees — as the public understands — weak enforcement and noncompliance.
Although the compromise was announced the day the Census Bureau reported that there now are 100 million nonwhites in America, Americans are skeptical about the legislation, but not because they have suddenly succumbed to nativism. Rather, the public has slowly come to the conclusion that the government cannot be trusted to mean what it says about immigration.
In 1986, when there probably were 3 million to 5 million illegal immigrants, Americans accepted an amnesty because they were promised that border control would promptly follow. Today the 12 million illegal immigrants, 60 percent of whom have been here five or more years, are as numerous as Pennsylvanians; 44 states have populations smaller than 12 million. Deporting the 12 million would require police resources and methods from which the nation would rightly flinch. So, why not leave bad enough alone?
Concentrate on border control, and workplace enforcement facilitated by a biometric identification card issued to immigrants who are or will arrive here legally. Treat the problem of the 12 million with benign neglect. Their children born here are American citizens; the parents of these children will pass away.
There’s a dead horse on the living room floor. At least when we think of school security, and the possibility of some nut case coming in and shooting up the place, and the people inside. We are loathe to discuss the dead horse because we don’t want to contemplate the fact that we would have to do something tangible about it. So we simply tiptoe over it and try to ignore its presence. And we pray that others will do the same.
Like an alcoholic refusing to admit that they have a problem because then they’d have to do something about it, we all can see the dead horse, yet no one wants to do anything about it. Meanwhile, it continues to fester. What about future happenings? Future victims?
Well, there’s a problem with this strategy, as Virginia Tech shows us. We can try to ignore dead horses, but they continue to make their presence known to us, and our avoidance of the topic becomes more and more silly and pathetic as time passes, and events illustrate the fallacy of our preconceived notions.
The read dead horse is, of course the sad fact that the VA Tech nutcase had time to chain the doors, reload, and perform many other tasks – including killing as many people as possible – simply because he had no viable opposition. The dead horse is the fact that when nutcases come to our schools looking to make names for themselves, they know that they face no effective opposition.
32 people dead in VA Tech. how many would be alive and walking around today had there been someone – anyone inside that building who could mount effective opposition? The dead horse I refer to is why wasn’t anybody else armed? Why wasn’t there an armed person inside that building who could provide effective protection for the victims, who could only be led like sheep (or horses) to slaughter?
We know that name of that dead horse – the college administration is afraid of guns and had banned them from campus – even by licensed permit holders. Not only that, but they had just successfully defended this policy against a licensed permit holder in court. And not only that, they crowed over their victory, claiming it would make the campus safer. Events have proved that this policy, far from making people safer, actually increased their vulnerability for when the nutcase came.
Guns are banned from public places out of ignorance and propaganda. Those who know the truth know that guns are used far more often to deter crime than to cause it. They know that passing laws, enacting policies, etc. only deter the ‘good guys’, and do nothing to stop the ‘bad guys’. In fact, by publicizing the fact that yours is a ‘gun free’ zone, you effectively invite every nutcase in the vicinity to use your facility, and your people, as targets in his shooting gallery. You guarantee him safety from opposition whilst he continues to kill more and more people. And you take the right to self defense away from the victims.
Read the whole thing.
House Minority Leader John Boehner on the Senate's immigration "grand bargain"--
"I promised the President today that I wouldn't say anything bad about ... this piece of shit bill ..."
Hmm. So Bush is actively asking his GOP friends to tone down their criticism of the Sen. Kyl's wonderful bipartisan handiwork. Cut to FOX News Channel, which I watched for much of yesterday on a plane--and which wasn't nearly as rabble-rousing on the anti-amnesty front as you'd expect a rabble-rousing conservative cable channel to be. Ramesh Ponnuru at The Corner noticed this too. Maybe the White House made the same request of Fox it made of Boehner. Certainly this is a crucial weekend for the p.o.s. bill--if Senators go home and get enough grief from their constituents, the alleged 60-70 vote majority might disappear quickly. ... Am I saying that Roger Ailes, head of Fox News, is susceptible to guidance from the White House? Yes! Conservatives shouldn't trust Fox any more than liberals do. ... Update 5/23: Tonight Hannity & Colmes opened with ... the catfight at The View! I rest my case. ... 1:01 P.M. link
The people who make arguments about "jobs Americans won't do" are never in a line of work where unskilled immigrants can compete with them. Liberals love to strike generous, humanitarian poses with other people's lives.
Something tells me the immigration debate would be different if we were importing millions of politicians or Hollywood agents. You lose your job, while I keep my job at the Endeavor agency, my Senate seat, my professorship, my editorial position or my presidency. (And I get a maid!)
The only beneficiaries of these famed hardworking immigrants — unlike you lazy Americans — are the wealthy, who want the cheap labor while making the rest of us chip in for the immigrants' schooling, food and health care.
These great lovers of the downtrodden — the downtrodden trimming their hedges — pretend to believe that their gardeners' children will be graduating from Harvard and curing cancer someday, but (1) they don't believe that; and (2) if it happened, they'd lose their gardeners.
Not to worry, Marie Antoinettes! According to "Alien Nation" author Peter Brimelow, "There is recent evidence that, even after four generations, fewer than 10 percent of Mexicans have post-high school degrees, as opposed to nearly half of non-Mexican-Americans." So you'll always have the maid. As New York mayor Michael Bloomberg said, our golf fairways would suffer without illegal immigrants: "You and I both play golf; who takes care of the greens and the fairways on your golf course?"
We fought a civil war to force Democrats to give up on slavery 150 years ago. They've become so desperate for servants that now they're importing an underclass to wash their clothes and pick their vegetables. This vast class of unskilled immigrants is the left's new form of slavery.
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
France's minister of immigration and national identity, a new ministry created by President Nicolas Sarkozy, has ruled out legalizing undocumented immigrants en masse.
The new ministry said today that government policy would be dictated by firmness and pragmatism.
Under Sarkosy, France may have a better government than the US.
Dog bites man.
UPDATE: Even the lousy LA Times takes out ofter the ethically challenged Murtha.
The Pennsylvania Democrat tarnishes the party's image and nearly receives a reprimand playing 'earmark' politics.
May 23, 2007
WITH DEMOCRATS like Rep. John P. Murtha of Pennsylvania, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi doesn't need Republicans. After Pelosi promised that Democrats would preside over "the most honest, the most open and the most ethical Congress," Murtha, whom Pelosi unsuccessfully pushed for majority leader, described a Democratic lobbying reform proposal as "total crap." (He graciously added, however, that he'd support the legislation because "that's what Nancy wants.")
Murtha's latest gift to Pelosi is a confrontation in which he allegedly told Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), who had opposed one of Murtha's pet projects, that "I hope you don't have any earmarks in the defense appropriation bill because they are gone, and you will not get any earmarks now and forever." Rogers, a former FBI agent, asserted that Murtha had turned the House floor into an episode of "The Sopranos," and he filed a resolution accusing his colleague of violating House rules. On Tuesday, the resolution was tabled on a largely party-line vote, but not before Democrats were put excruciatingly on the defensive on what Pelosi has made a signature issue. Expect Republicans to continue making "Sopranos" jokes.
Actually, Tony Soprano is a less likely role model for Murtha than Lyndon B. Johnson, but that's part of the problem for Pelosi. The Almanac of American Politics describes Murtha in terms that also would suit LBJ: "one of those old-time politicians who operate best in secret." Unfortunately for Democrats, Murtha's confrontation with Rogers was public, as was the vote by which the complaint against the master appropriator was put on procedural ice.
It doesn't help the Democrats' image that this dispute over Murtha's comments originated in an earmark, a special-interest provision widely seen as part of the "culture of corruption" decried by Democrats in the last election. Rogers angered Murtha by trying to scuttle $23 million for the National Drug Intelligence Center, located in Murtha's district and regarded by the Bush administration as duplicative of other agencies.
In the first-ever, nationwide survey of Muslim Americans, the Pew Research Center suggests that 26 percent of the 2.35 million Muslims in the U.S. believe there are circumstances in which suicide bombings are acceptable.
Nearly half (47 percent) think of themselves as Muslim first, American second. Among those under the age of 30, 13 percent believe suicide bombings to defend their religion are sometimes justified; 11 percent say this tactic is rarely justified; two percent say it can often be justified.
The Pew Research Center interviewed 1,050 randomly selected Muslim American adults aged 18 and older, from Jan. 24 through April 30, 2007. Half identified themselves as Sunni, 16 percent as Shiite. Sixty-five percent were foreign-born, 35 percent were born in the U.S.A. (three out of five of these are converts to Islam).
So how did the MSM report the shocking and frightening fact that there could be as many as 610,000 people living among us - the population of Charlotte, NC - who can justify terrorism against American civilians under certain circumstances?
A scan of the headlines shows that some played it straight, some downplayed the ramifications of the survey and some – bizarrely – chose to ignore the threat of homegrown terrorism altogether and focus instead on how “happy” and “assimilated” U.S. Muslims are (note the National Public Radio and Voice of America headlines; your tax dollars at work):
† CBS News (NY): Poll: 26% Of Young US Muslims OK Bombs
† CBS 42 (TX): Poll: One In Four US Muslims OK Suicide Bombs
† KTVO (MO): Some young US Muslims OK with suicide attacks
† Lone Star Times (TX): What about the enemy within?
† Los Angeles Times: Some younger US Muslims say suicide bombings could be justified
† Reuters: Poll finds some US Muslim support for suicide attacks
Burying The Lede:
† The Associated Press via York (PA) Dispatch: Poll: Most US Muslims critical of extremism, al-Qaida
† KRQE (NM): Poll: Most US Muslims reject extremism
† The Washington Post: : Pew Surveys Muslims in America
† WLBT-TV (MS): Poll: American Muslims reject suicide bombings, but pockets of discontent
† Wyoming News: Most US Muslims Reject Suicide Bombings
† BBC News (UK): Muslims ‘well integrated’ in US
† CBC (Prince Edward Island, Canada): Muslims in US decidedly American: study
† DetNews.com (MI): Survey: Muslims largely assimilated in US
† The Ledger (FL): American Muslims: Happy to be here
† NPR: Pew Study Sees Muslim Americans Assimilating
† Voice of America: Poll: US Muslims Feel Post-9/11 Backlash Despite Moderate Outlook
† WBIR-TV (TN): STUDY: Some American Muslims discontent
† USA Today: Poll: Muslim Americans overwhelmingly Democratic, but conservative on many issues
Labels: biased reporting
BY WENDY KAMINERRead the rest.
Wednesday, May 23, 2007 12:01 a.m. EDT
"ACLU Defends Nazi's Right to Burn Down ACLU Headquarters," the humor magazine The Onion announced in 1999. Those of us who loved the ACLU, and celebrated its willingness to defend the rights of Nazis and others who had no regard for our rights, considered the joke a compliment. Today it's more like a reproach. Once the nation's leading civil liberties group and a reliable defender of everyone's speech rights, the ACLU is being transformed into just another liberal human-rights group that reliably defends the rights of liberal speakers.
This transformation is gradual, unacknowledged and not readily apparent, since evidence of it lies mainly in cases the ACLU does not take. It's naturally easier to know what an organization is doing (and advertising) than what it is not doing. But a review of recent free-speech press releases turns up only a handful of cases in which ACLU state affiliates defended the rights of conservative, antigay or otherwise politically incorrect speakers. And lately the national organization has been remarkably quiet in several important free-speech cases and controversies.
One of the clearest indications of a retreat from defending all speech regardless of content is the ACLU's virtual silence in Harper v. Poway, an important federal case involving a high-school student's right to wear a T-shirt condemning homosexuality. Of course, the ACLU doesn't speak out on every case, but historically it has vigorously defended student speech rights, as its Web site stresses. It is currently representing a student in a speech case before the Supreme Court, Morse v. Frederick (involving the right of a student to carry a nonsensical "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" banner at an off-campus event). The ACLU pays particular attention to the right to wear T-shirts with pro-gay messages in school, proudly citing cases in which it represented students wearing pro-gay (as well as anti-Bush) T-shirts. This year, the ACLU awarded a Youth Activist Scholarship to a student who fought the efforts of her school to bar students from wearing T-shirts that said "Gay, Fine by me."
So in 2004, when Tyler Chase Harper was disciplined for wearing a T-shirt declaring his religious objections to homosexuality, civil libertarians might have expected the ACLU to protest loudly. Mr. Harper was barred from attending classes when he wore the antigay T-shirt to school on an official "Day of Silence," when gay students taped their mouths to symbolize the silencing effect of intolerance. Represented by the Alliance Defense Fund, he sued the school district. That same year, the ACLU initiated the first of two actions against a Missouri school that punished students for wearing "gay supportive T-shirts," eventually securing a promise from the school to "stop censoring," the ACLU Web site boasts. Mr. Harper, however, was unsuccessful in his quest to stop school censorship. In a patronizing, antilibertarian decision in which Judge Stephen Reinhardt stressed the imagined feelings of gay students, the Ninth Circuit rejected Mr. Harper's First Amendment claims. (There was a sharp dissent from Judge Alex Kozinski.)
Perhaps the ACLU was observing its own prolonged Day of Silence, because, while it pays close attention to federal appellate court decisions on civil liberties, it effectively ignored this terrible precedent, even when Mr. Harper appealed to the Supreme Court. The Court dismissed the case as moot because Mr. Harper had graduated but took the unusual step of vacating the decision so that it no longer exists as precedent (no thanks to the ACLU). Mr. Harper's younger sister, still in school, continued pressing his claims and her case is pending before the Ninth circuit. The ACLU has not adopted her cause either.
The Harpers didn't need representation from the ACLU. But the organization frequently speaks up for the rights of people it does not represent, like Guantanamo detainees, and often files amicus briefs in important civil liberties cases. Given its focus on student rights and religious liberty (one of the ACLU's priorities), it's hard to explain the ACLU's apparent equanimity about the violation of Mr. Harper's First Amendment rights--unless you consider the content of his speech.
Like the bias in the MSM, the causes that the ACLU does not represent are often a better indication of their goals and orientation than the causes they do represent.
MICHELLE MALKIN, GUEST HOST: In the "Factor Follow-up" segment tonight, as we told you at the top of the show, now that a bipartisan group of senators has struck a deal on immigration reform, the debate is going to the full Senate. And this is going to be a messy one.
Joining us now from Washington, FOX News contributor, Newt Gingrich, author of the new book, "Pearl Harbor: A Novel of December 8".
Mr. Speaker, thanks for joining us.
NEWT GINGRICH, AUTHOR, "PEARL HARBOR": It's good to be with you.
MALKIN: Question: Why does the GOP have such a death wish?
GINGRICH: I have no idea. This is the most self-destructive bill for Republicans to be sponsoring that I have seen, maybe in my lifetime. It is — I mean, you can't imagine how bad this bill is going to be by the time people understand all of its details and how foolish its sponsors are going to look, at least on the Republican side, where there is some semblance of a belief of the rule of law and some semblance of belief in the sense of fairness.
And this bill is a recklessly destructive bill, written, I think, in a fantasyland by a group of staff who have no idea how the U.S. government operates and, frankly, don't care how it operates.
This is a political bill written for political purposes. It fits the agenda of the left. And every Republican ought to be opposed to it, and frankly, every common sense Democrat ought to be opposed to it.
MALKIN: Newt, you are an historian. And the history of these kind of bogus trade-offs between amnesty and delayed enforcement have never worked. Hasn't worked since 1986, and every form of amnesty that's been passed since then — there have been about a dozen other smaller amnesties that have been passed, and the only result has been more illegal immigration.
Why don't Republicans and conservatives and these open borders libertarians learn from history instead of their imagined reality of what the situation has been for the last 30 or 40 years?
GINGRICH: Well, I think you have a lot of different things are coming together. President Bush, for whatever reason, seems to have a passionate desire to amnesty millions of people and to pass an immigration bill which will be stunningly destructive to his party and to his base.
A number of Republicans seem to buy the business community argument that they have been using illegal immigrants for years. Therefore to make them actually be legal would be very destructive economically. And I think that Democrats believe that the more people you can amnesty the better. At least left-wing Democrats do.
But when you look at the bill in detail, it strike me as — it's an amazingly badly written bill. For example, there are at least 30,000 illegal immigrants who belong to gangs, which are violent, which are drug dealing.
Those 30,000 gang members, according to analysis I got a few minutes ago, would all be grandfathered in under a Z-visa and could not be deported. Now, I mean, this is as close to madness as anything I've seen in modern government.
Apparently, the White House knocked out a provision to require that illegal immigrants at least pay back taxes.
GINGRICH: So now they won't have to pay back taxes. So now you're setting up a two-tier process, where if you are legal, if you are a citizen, if you have followed the law, if you've been a legal visa holder, you have to pay back taxes or you have real problems with the IRS. But if you cleverly broke the American law and you cleverly avoided taxes for all these years, you are somehow exempt.
Now I think the average American — this could be the kind of breaking point where the average American decides to throw everybody out, Democrat and Republican alike, and this could actually lead to the emergence of a very fundamental revolution at the grassroots.
MALKIN: Well, we'll see. I want to play a couple of sound bites. It's bad enough that the conservatives and Republicans get criticism from the left, but here is what Michael Chertoff is saying about immigration enforcement proponents.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL CHERTOFF, SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY: I understand there are some people expect anything other than capital punishment is an amnesty.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALKIN: And here's what Lindsey Graham said about those same grassroots forces.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: We are going to solve this problem. We're not going to run people down. We're not going to scapegoat people. We're going to tell the bigots to shut up, and we're going to get this right.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALKIN: These are Republicans — Republicans — accusing other immigration enforcement activists in their own party of being bigots and wanting to basically execute illegal aliens and not offer them anything else. What's your reaction to that, Newt?
GINGRICH: Look, you know how pathetically bad their argument is if all they can do is call names. I mean, I'd be quite happy to debate McCain or Chertoff or Graham anywhere, any time about this bill.
This bill is a disaster. It is a failure. It should be defeated. It should cease to exist. The Senate ought to go back to regular business. They ought to try to produce an immigration bill through the regular committee process out in the open, where people can look at it, amend it, refine it, criticize it.
But this particular deal is as big a disaster as any Republican has had in my lifetime. And I predict if, in fact, it gets through the Senate, it will be a disaster for every Republican senator and a lot of Democratic senators is I think the anger is bipartisan.
Tax-paying Americans do not want to be told that international gang members are going to be amnestied. They don't want to be told that, as long as you are illegal you don't have to pay your back taxes. And they don't want to be told that their desire to enforce the law means that they're bigots.
I suspect in South Carolina there are a lot of people who are very unhappy tonight with Lindsey Graham and that kind of elitist attitude.
MALKIN: Definitely a lot of booing going on, Newt. We've got less than 30 seconds. Do you have any comment on what's going on in Lebanon right now?
GINGRICH: Sure. Lebanon is further proof that the War on Terror involves a lot more than Iraq, and it involves a lot more than America. And we better be prepared to help our allies win the War on Terror.
MALKIN: That's the bottom line, Mr. Speaker, thank you.
GINGRICH: Thank you.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
What you will also find in the comments are some hateful comments by people who really hate Christians. That is a passion I realize exists. I wonder what kind of mental illness makes people like that.
The announcement last week that the White House and a group of senators have reached an agreement on "comprehensive immigration reform" should have the same effect that the word "iceberg" had on the passengers and crew of the Titanic.
When the FBI arrested six terrorists in New Jersey two weeks ago it turned out that three of them had been in the U.S. illegally for at least TWENTY years.
These three had crossed our unprotected border and had been living in New Jersey.
But here's the even more outrageous part: The police had filed 75 (SEVENTY-FIVE!) charges against them, including drug possession and possession of drug paraphernalia.
In 75 interactions, the police never once learned that these three people were here illegally.
The government failed twice: First, by failing to secure the border, and second, by failing to determine that these people were here illegally. The result was that more than five years after 9/11 we were saved from a mass killing at Fort Dix only because of the patriotism and courage of a clerk at an electronics store.
Compare the 75 charges made against the would-be Fort Dix terrorists with how we rounded up German spies in World War II. In June 1942, it took a total of 15 days to track down and arrest eight German spies who landed in Florida and New York from submarines. We executed six of them and gave one life in prison and the other thirty years. We were serious about winning that war). Go here for a more detailed comparison and a list of the 75 charges against the Fort Dix terrorists.
Faced with this level of failure of bureaucracy, how could anyone believe for a minute that this new immigration bill will work? The fact is it can't and it won't. It will rely on the same failed bureaucracy and produce more years of failure.
Read the whole thing.
Is all that ails the U.S. health-care system that it’s not run by a Communist dictatorship? That has long been a premise of apologists for Fidel Castro who extol the virtues of medical care on his totalitarian island nation.
Cuban health care works only for the select few: if you are a high-ranking member of the party or the military and have access to top-notch clinics; or a health-care tourist who can pay in foreign currency at a special facility catering to foreigners; or a documentarian who can be relied upon to produce a lickspittle film whitewashing the system.
Ordinary Cubans experience the wasteland of the real system. Even aspirin and Pepto-Bismol can be rare, and there’s a black market for them. According to a report in the Canadian National Post: “Hospitals are falling apart, surgeons lack basic supplies and must reuse latex gloves. Patients must buy their sutures on the black market and provide bed sheets and food for extended hospital stays.”
But the routine medical care, we’re supposed to believe, is superb. The statistic frequently cited for this proposition is that Cuba has the lowest infant mortality rate in Latin America. Put aside that the reflexively dishonest Cuban government is the ultimate source for these figures. Cuba had the lowest infant mortality rate in Latin America prior to the revolution and has lost ground to other countries around the world since. It also has an appallingly high abortion rate, meaning most problem pregnancies are pre-emptively ended.
The only reason to fantasize about Cuban health care is to stick a finger in the eye of the Yanquis. For the likes of Michael Moore, the true glory of Cuba is less its health care than the fact that it is an enemy of the United States. That’s why romanticizing Cuban medicine isn’t just folly, but itself qualifies as a kind of sickness.
At this year's graduation celebration at The New School in New York, Iranian lawyer, human-rights activist and Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi delivered our commencement address. This brave woman, who has been imprisoned for her criticism of the Iranian government, had many good and wise things to say to our graduates, which earned their applause.
But one applause line troubled me. Ms. Ebadi said: "Democracy cannot be imposed with military force."
What troubled me about this statement--a commonly heard criticism of U.S. involvement in Iraq--is that those who say such things seem to forget the good U.S. arms have done in imposing democracy on countries like Japan and Germany, or Bosnia more recently.
Let me restate the case for this Iraq war from the U.S. point of view. The U.S. led an invasion to overthrow Saddam Hussein because Iraq was rightly seen as a threat following Sept. 11, 2001. For two decades we had suffered attacks by radical Islamic groups but were lulled into a false sense of complacency because all previous attacks were "over there." It was our nation and our people who had been identified by Osama bin Laden as the "head of the snake." But suddenly Middle Eastern radicals had demonstrated extraordinary capacity to reach our shores.
As for Saddam, he had refused to comply with numerous U.N. Security Council resolutions outlining specific requirements related to disclosure of his weapons programs. He could have complied with the Security Council resolutions with the greatest of ease. He chose not to because he was stealing and extorting billions of dollars from the U.N. Oil for Food program.
No matter how incompetent the Bush administration and no matter how poorly they chose their words to describe themselves and their political opponents, Iraq was a larger national security risk after Sept. 11 than it was before. And no matter how much we might want to turn the clock back and either avoid the invasion itself or the blunders that followed, we cannot. The war to overthrow Saddam Hussein is over. What remains is a war to overthrow the government of Iraq.
Some who have been critical of this effort from the beginning have consistently based their opposition on their preference for a dictator we can control or contain at a much lower cost. From the start they said the price tag for creating an environment where democracy could take root in Iraq would be high. Those critics can go to sleep at night knowing they were right.
The critics who bother me the most are those who ordinarily would not be on the side of supporting dictatorships, who are arguing today that only military intervention can prevent the genocide of Darfur, or who argued yesterday for military intervention in Bosnia, Somalia and Rwanda to ease the sectarian violence that was tearing those places apart.
Suppose we had not invaded Iraq and Hussein had been overthrown by Shiite and Kurdish insurgents. Suppose al Qaeda then undermined their new democracy and inflamed sectarian tensions to the same level of violence we are seeing today. Wouldn't you expect the same people who are urging a unilateral and immediate withdrawal to be urging military intervention to end this carnage? I would.
American liberals need to face these truths: The demand for self-government was and remains strong in Iraq despite all our mistakes and the violent efforts of al Qaeda, Sunni insurgents and Shiite militias to disrupt it. Al Qaeda in particular has targeted for abduction and murder those who are essential to a functioning democracy: school teachers, aid workers, private contractors working to rebuild Iraq's infrastructure, police officers and anyone who cooperates with the Iraqi government. Much of Iraq's middle class has fled the country in fear.
With these facts on the scales, what does your conscience tell you to do? If the answer is nothing, that it is not our responsibility or that this is all about oil, then no wonder today we Democrats are not trusted with the reins of power. American lawmakers who are watching public opinion tell them to move away from Iraq as quickly as possible should remember this: Concessions will not work with either al Qaeda or other foreign fighters who will not rest until they have killed or driven into exile the last remaining Iraqi who favors democracy.
The key question for Congress is whether or not Iraq has become the primary battleground against the same radical Islamists who declared war on the U.S. in the 1990s and who have carried out a series of terrorist operations including 9/11. The answer is emphatically "yes."
Read the rest.