Wednesday, November 19, 2014


Sara Lipton writes about how Jews were stereotyped since the Middle Ages. . .big noses, certain clothing, etc.  But the stereotypes change over time.

Monday, November 10, 2014


The charges of those opposing Obamacare have finally been proven.  The architect, Jonathan Gruber, admits that language was used to mislead about the costs and impact of the law.Watch the video.

Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And, basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really very very critical to get the thing to pass. And, you know, it’s the second best argument. I wish Mark was right we could make this transparent but I would rather have this law than not.”

Wednesday, November 05, 2014


A book review of "How the UN Became Anti-Israel" by Joshua Muravchik.

Can there be any doubt that Israel is the most reviled country in the world today? No other nation engenders as much scorn, whether measured in newspaper column inches, street protests, or computer pixels. The only aspect of the hatred more disturbing than its virulent omnipresence is how out of proportion it is to Israel’s real (and alleged) wrongdoing. North Korea functions as a vast gulag, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad deploys chemical weapons on children, and the Castro brothers have ruled despotically over their Cuban island fiefdom for five decades running, but none of these dictatorial regimes invite anywhere near the scrutiny, never mind spittle-flecked loathing, engendered by the Jewish democratic state. A majority of Europeans, according to polls, consider this tiny country of eight million people to be the greatest threat to world peace. An Israeli soldier fires a rubber bullet in the West Bank and it will generate venomous crowds in cities around the globe; Iranian paramilitary basij forces murder peaceful demonstrators in broad daylight and the world emits barely a peep of protest.

Why the Jewish state generates such disproportionate anger is the subject of Joshua Muravchik’s thorough and careful study,

Monday, October 27, 2014


Headline from Politico;  "Team of Bumblers?  Are Susan Rice and Chuck Hagel equal to today’s new national-security challenges."

This is pretty tough criticism coming from the more liberal Politico.  The response to the ISIS threat was clearly muddled.

Unfortunately, the White House failed to consult with the Pentagon—which would be doing most of the rolling back—on the timing or details of the announcement.

According to multiple sources, behind the scenes a few things went badly awry in the launch of Obama’s new policy.  First, the Pentagon was surprised by the president’s timing, according to a senior defense official. “We didn’t know it was going to be in the speech,” he said, referring to Obama’s Sept. 10 address to the nation. Second, the White House neglected to give Pentagon lawyers a chance to revise and approve the proposed legislative language before it went to the Hill, which is considered standard practice. Staffers working for Rep. Buck McKeon, the Republican chairman of the Armed Services Committee, said they were appalled by what they saw: language so sloppy that it failed to mention adequate protections against so-called “green-on-blue” attacks by trainees on American troops, and effectively left the Defense Department liable for funding the mission against the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)—even though the president was telling members of Congress he didn’t need money for this new mission, since the Saudis were putting it up. “What came over would have not have been a mission the DoD could have executed,” says a senior Republican committee staffer.

And as the article continues, the story gets even worse.  The Obama administration is all about politics and not solving problems.

Thursday, October 16, 2014


Memories.  UCLA glorifies the memory of Angela Davis, an American communist from the 1960s and 1970s!  It brought back memories of her being hosted in Prague by Communist Czechoslovakia in the early seventies.  A friend told me how astounded a Czech limo driver was at her naivete about how wonderful things were in Communist Czechoslovakia when the average person was struggling to make it under Communism. Most Czechs living under Communism preferred what America had under Capitalism.  She never experienced their lives, but only saw what the elite wanted her to see and experience.

For those who can’t identify her, the photo depicts Angela Davis, the notorious former Communist Party USA leader who, beginning in the ’60s, molded together black nationalism with Marxism-Leninism. She created a heady brew for recruiting new cadre into the CP and the original Black Panther Party of Huey Newton.

Some optimist! Davis believed in the triumph of Communism.

For her loyalty to the Soviet Union and its foreign policies, in 1972 she was awarded a Lenin Centenary Medal in the Soviet Union, after which she spoke to thousands at an outdoor rally in Moscow. Next, speaking at a factory in Kirov, Davis praised the workers for not using “products of labor [to fuel] the irrational drive for capitalist profits as it is used in our country.”


The situation in Yemen is often not covered by the media.  Now it looks like the Obama administration has "lost Yemen" to radical Islamists.

Nobody saw it coming. On Sept. 20, Yemen’s Huthi movement executed a political coup so stealthy that the world hardly noticed, and so momentous that local commentators are dividing modern Yemeni history into before and after the Huthi assent to power. The Huthis, a Shiite-led rebel group with a power base in Yemen’s far north, have been waiting for this moment since the early 2000s, when their civil rights campaign was forced to take up arms in self-defense.


From BoingBoing:  "Obama Administration Has Secured 526 Months of Jail Time for Leakers."

Up until Obama's "most transparent administration", and throughout the entire history of the USA, national security leakers had received a total of 24 months of jail time. There are many more cases pending.

From the Daily Signal:  "19 Times the Government Withheld Documents It Didn't Want You to See."

This is not a particularly transparent administration. 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Mark A. Thiessen at the Washington Post chronicles all of Obama's lies.  He calls it a "culture of deceit."

In 1996, the late, great New York Times columnist William Safire published a column, “Blizzard of lies,” in which he laid out a series of falsehoods by Hillary Rodham Clinton and declared “Americans of all political persuasions are coming to the sad realization that our First Lady — a woman of undoubted talents who was a role model for many in her generation — is a congenital liar.”

Today, Americans of all political stripes are coming to a similar, sad realization about our president. A recent Fox News poll asked Americans “How often does Barack Obama lie to the country on important matters?” Thirty-seven percent said “most of the time,” 24 percent said “some of the time,” and 20 percent said “only now and then.” Just 15% said “never.”

Think about that: 81 percent of Americans believe that Obama lies to them at least “now and then” on “important matters.”

And then there is the Department of Justice.  Who will replace Holder?

Numerous publications close to the White House have reported that Labor Secretary Tom Perez has emerged as the leading candidate to replace Attorney General Eric Holder. That Perez has a documented and repeating history of dishonesty, racialism, and radicalism shows that this administration feels unrestrained by conventional political wisdom. That the White House is dropping his name before an election should demonstrate to every Republican that Obama is fundamentally transforming politics in corrosive ways that the GOP seems ill-equipped to contain.

Perez seems to have told more lies than Pinochio.


Very interesting story on Dr. Lurie, an assistant secretary at the Department of Health & Human Services.  It is her job to take the lead on Ebola and other infectious diseases but she has not uttered a word. And it appears no preparedness for anything has taken place in spite of the money Congress allocated. But it may be she is too busy giving Democrat donors sweet heart deals on government grants.

See, in 2004, Congress passed The Project Bioshield Act. The text of that legislation authorized up to $5,593,000,000 in new spending by NIH for the purpose of purchasing vaccines that would be used in the event of a bioterrorist attack. A major part of the plan was to allow stockpiling and distribution of vaccines.

Just two years later, Congress passed the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act, which created a new assistant secretary for preparedness and response to oversee medical efforts and called for a National Health Security Strategy. The Act establishedBiomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority as the focal point within HHS for medical efforts to protect the American civilian population against naturally occurring threats to public health. It specifically says this authority was established to give “an integrated, systematic approach to the development and purchase of the necessary vaccines, drugs, therapies, and diagnostic tools for public health medical emergencies.”

Last year, Congress passed the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act of 2013 which keep the programs in effect for another five years.

If you look at any of the information about these pieces of legislation or the office and authorities that were created, this brand new expansion of the federal government was sold to us specifically as a means to fight public health threats like Ebola. That was the entire point of why the office and authorities were created.


According to Pew Research, Republican voters are more informed than Democrat voters.

Out of 12 questions asked, Republicans outperformed both Democrats and Independents on 10. The differences were most pronounced on the questions regarding Common Core, fracking and where Shiites outnumber Sunnis, where the percentage of Republicans answering correctly outpaced Democrats by double digits. But Republicans also outperformed Democrats on questions centering on the federal minimum wage and the Fed Chairwoman, even though she's a Democrat appointed by Obama, while the minimum wage is Democrats' favorite wedge issue this election year to try to keep Harry Reid (D - Nevada) as the Senate Majority Leader.

Democrats only outscored Republicans in naming the primary Ebola outbreak location and the federal poverty rate, but only by 2 and 5 percentage points, respectively.

Monday, October 13, 2014


According to the left-wing Independent Obama's ISIS bombing policy is not working.

The US-led air attacks launched against Islamic State (also known as Isis) on 8 August in Iraq and 23 September in Syria have not worked. President Obama's plan to "degrade and destroy" Islamic State has not even begun to achieve success. In both Syria and Iraq, Isis is expanding its control rather than contracting.


Peer review can be manipulated to show a study proving something or an author has done great research.

How reliable is academic research? Not very, it seems, after noting that the Journal of Vibration and Control, a reputable academic publication, had to retract 60 different papers over the summer.

But it’s not just the clubbiness of academia that is to blame. There is such ideological uniformity in the ivory tower that no one ever questions the important assumptions behind anyone else’s research.


An interesting comparison of how the government responded to the great flu epidemic after World War I and how it is responding to Ebola.

But playing "national security" progressive politics with public health can bring outright disaster. When the United States entered World War I, Woodrow Wilson played the national-security card early and often. The war effort became an excuse for everything from jailing political opponents to spying on everyday Americans. But, when the president used a global war as an excuse to preempt sound public-health policy, he reaped a global catastrophe.

Friday, October 10, 2014


From the CATO Institute.  Terrible, but taxpayers and the educational establishment seem to be aware or care.

Friday, October 03, 2014


A discussion of Leon Panetta's new book and his disagreements with the administration he served in.  He believes some troops should have been kept in Iraq.

And John Fund summarizes some of the criticism which now involves right-hand woman, Valerie Jarrett.

On Capitol Hill, members of both parties are more and more mystified at Obama’s apparent disengagement from parts of his job. Months before he dropped the ball on ISIS, he failed to keep himself properly apprised of the problems with Obamacare’s website. Jarrett appears to exercise such extraordinary influence that in some quarters on Capitol Hill she is known as “Rasputin,” a reference to the mystical monk who held sway over Russia’s Czar Nicholas as he increasingly lost touch with reality during World War I.


Vice President Biden sees the world "fraying at the seams."  He doesn't seem very optimistic about the future.  The administration in which he serves surely has done something to contribute to the problems we have in the world today.  He says he optimistic, but it sure doesn't sound that way.


Listening to events over the past week, especially with regard to the incident in Dallas leaves one wondering.  The news keeps changing regarding the potential threat.

President Obama said not to worry. . .it wouldn't happen here, but it has happened.  And the CDC was saying how difficult it was to spread and even Chris Matthews the liberal talk host at MSNBC went after his inconsistencies.  So where are we?

"Obama Nixed Bush-Era Quarantine Proposal":  In 2010, the Obama administration withdrew updated quarantine regulations drafted by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and proposed by the Bush administration. The new rules would have required air passengers to submit more information to airlines and strengthened the government’s authority to detain travelers suspected of carrying disease.

Liberals like to say that President Bush and Republicans generally are “science deniers.” But in this instance, Bush followed the path recommended by the Centers for Disease Control — no science deniers, they. It was Obama who elevated ideology over science thereby (to borrow the CDC’s words) denying Americans “critical” protection against “dangerous diseases spread by travelers.

"Obama Rips Bush for Being Unprepared for Avian Flu Outbreak":  But something must have been done right, according to the article. . .you don't hear about the Avian flu anymore.  "Obama's Pathetic Response to Ebola Isn't Reassuring."  "The chances of an Ebola outbreak here in the United States are extremely low," President Obama said recently. But he was wrong. We wonder: Was he repeating a considered medical opinion, or just offering his own?

The Hill.  "Health Officials Clam Up about the Effort to Contain Ebola in Texas."  It sounds like the CDC and others don't know what they are doing.

George Will:  "Americans Want to Trust Government But Can't."

Vice President Joe Biden:  "The disease spreads with blinding speed"--but there are no travel restrictions.  The Veep should maybe read the Daily Mail.  With open borders and travel who knows who or what is coming in.

Cleaning up Dallas apartments without proper suits!  Government gone brain-dead.

Chris Matthews goes after Obama ("it isn't likely") and Ezekiel Emmanuel.

NBC News:  "Ibuprofen Is All It Takes to Pass Airport Screening."

Wednesday, October 01, 2014


From Louisiana's Senate race.  I have never seen a Republican ad raise the issue of class warfare!  It is taken right out of the Democrats playbook.

See it on You Tube.


Margaret Wente points out an interesting irony about the Secular Left's concerns about sexual violence on university campuses.  They are sounding a lot like the religious right, only they do not support their "rules" with religious or biblical truths.  There is something to be said about the biblical truths that speak to the way men and women should conduct themselves.

Sixty years ago, sexual behaviour among the young caused deep alarm among the puritanical religious right. Today, it causes deep alarm among the puritanical progressive left. Like their forebears, they are doing their best to restrict and regulate it.

This weekend, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that makes universities redefine consensual sex. From now on, students must effectively obtain the “affirmative consent” of their partners, which must be “ongoing” every step of the way. Those accused of violating the consent rule will be judged on the preponderance of the evidence. Perpetrators face suspension or expulsion, and universities face heavy penalties for failure to enforce.

Obviously the Left is not supporting marital fidelity, but there is a recognition that the counter-culture values promoted by secularism have not created a more loving, caring society.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014


Quotes from Anjem Choudary, a "radical" British Imam.  He has led several Muslim protests in London.

"In the Quran it is not allowed for you to feel sorry for non-Muslims. I don't feel sorry for him."

"Eventually the whole world will be governed by Shari'ah & Muslims will have authority over China Russia USA etc This is the promise of Allah."

"Under the Koran the sale of alcohol is prohibited and if one were to also drink alcohol, that would be 40 lashes."

"We [Muslims] take the Jizya, which is ours anyway. The normal situation is to take money from the kuffar [non-Muslim]. They give us the money. You work, give us the money, Allahu Akhbar. We take the money."


Obama said in an interview that the intelligence community had missed ISIS.

From The Hill: House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) said the intelligence community had warned President Obama about the threat from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria for "over a year."
From Breitbart:

A new Government Accountability Institute (GAI)report reveals that President Barack Obama has attended only 42.1% of his daily intelligence briefings (known officially as the Presidential Daily Brief, or PDB) in the 2,079 days of his presidency through September 29, 2014.

The GAI report also included a breakdown of Obama’s PDB attendance record between terms; he attended 42.4% of his PDBs in his first term and 41.3% in his second.

Thursday, September 25, 2014


I was wondering when this issue would surface.  What is the difference between Israel bombing Hamas in Gaza and the US bombing ISIS in Syria and Iraq?

The air attack by American and Arab forces against ISIS and other terrorist targets parallels Israel's air attacks against Hamas terrorist targets in Gaza. According to retired General Wesley Clark, the United States air attacks are designed to degrade and destroy the infrastructure of the terrorist groups, including the electricity grid, the sources of their finance and other mixed military-civilian targets.

Israel was criticized by Washington and others for its missile attack on Hamas even when Hamas was sending missiles into Israel.  But now America seems to be acting like Israel.  Do we have a double standard?  And what will happen when the US and its Arab allies hit ISIS targets where women and children are?  

It has been easy for the international community to apply these rules rigidly and unrealistically when the only country to which it applies them is the nation-state of the Jewish people. But now it will have to apply them across the board, and that will require defining them in a sensible and realistic way that does not give undue advantage to terrorists who refuse to comply with the rule of law.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014


There sure are a lot of Socialists and Communists involved when you look at the pictures.  The irony is that the Communists in the old Soviet Union did more to harm the environment than any capitalist country or corporation ever did.


The American Interest:  "The Parallels Between Bush and Obama."

As President Obama begins to bomb Syria (with no UN authorization and with a coalition of the willing), he is still bombing Iraq, Yemen, and Pakistan; he has U.S. forces spread out across Africa; some are heading back into Iraq; and Guantanamo is still open. It’s hard not to wonder whether in a quiet moment President Obama sometimes thinks he was too smug and too callow back when he poured contempt on President Bush. (After all, even the New York Times isslowly coming to grips with the similarities between how certain events have unfolded. Surely President Obama has noticed them in passing as well.)

Reason:  "6 Ways Obama Contradicts Himself in Waging War on ISIS."

Shep Smith on Foxnews to a State Department spokesperson:  "You guys have basically adopted Dick Cheney’s theory of preventive war now, huh?"


A good summary of Obama's switch in policies from the Independent (UK).

As America and its Arab allies targeted Islamic militants in Syria for the first time, killing at least 120 of them, it is evident that Washington is no longer giving priority to removing President Bashar al-Assad from power. This means the US is shifting away from its policy of the past three years when it insisted that no negotiations were possible except about his removal.

This conclusion is troubling:

Though air strikes will inflict casualties on Isis in Syria and Iraq, they will not be enough to defeat the group and may not even contain it. Much will depend on how far the US is prepared to give tactical support to those fighting Isis on the ground in Syria.

And Obama goes to war with weapons he wanted to scrap.

The president launches attacks on the Islamic State with two weapons systems that were targeted for elimination by the administration years before their usefulness ended or any replacements were ready.

With the decision to launch air and missile strikes against Islamic State targets in Syria, in addition to ongoing strikes in Iraq in what is said to be the start of a long and sustained campaign to "degrade and destroy" the terrorist group, President Obama has stumbled upon a revelation:

The military whose budgets he's slashed and weapons systems he opposed is suddenly quite useful.


From WAPO.  If this is happening to the liberal media, conservative reporters are probably feeling even more restrictions.

Journalists who cover the White House say Obama’s press aides have demanded — and received — changes in press-pool reports before the reports have been disseminated to other journalists. They say the White House has used its unusual role as the distributor of the reports as leverage to steer coverage in a more favorable direction.

While the overwhelming majority of pool reports pass through the White House without delay or amendment, some have been flagged by the administration’s press staff, which has demanded changes as a condition of distributing them.

Saturday, September 20, 2014


While the liberal media portrays Democrats and the Obama administration in a positive light, at the same time the Obama administration has limited the information it allows the media to have.  The AP Washington Bureau Chief describes eight ways the Obama administration has done this.  The administration is even intimidating some reporters.

Politico also covers the censorship.  Intimidation of reporters is occurring.


A Democrat district attorney and the media go after a person who leaked a story that was unfavorable to the Democrat D.A. as he pursued a vendetta against the Republican governor.

We all know that politics isn’t softball, but surely this is crossing a very bright red line. It also exposes the rather dirty nature of liberal Wisconsin politics and the media there who seem to be not only their willing surrogates, but their foot soldiers in the field.


In a discussion with the Ukrainian President Putin said:

"If I wanted, in two days I could have Russian troops not only in Kiev, but also in Riga, Vilnius, Tallinn, Warsaw and Bucharest," Mr Putin allegedly told President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine, reported Süddeustche Zeitung, a German newspaper.


Angel Codevilla argues that the Washington crowd is fooling itself in this fight with ISIS.

This indulgence so overwhelms our ruling class’s perception of reality that the recipes put forth by its several wings, little different from one another, are identical in the one essential respect: none of them involve any plans which, if carried out, would destroy the Islamic State, kill large numbers of the cut-throats, and discourage others from following in their footsteps. Hence, like the George W. Bush’s “war on terror” and for the same reasons, this exercise of our ruling class’s wisdom in foreign affairs will decrease respect for us while invigorating our enemies.

The quote by Representative Duncan Hunter (R, CA) is right on:  “We need to crush ISIS and not work on arming more Islamic radicals. Just what would arming these people accomplish?”

Evidently the CIA doesn't think the Obama ISIS policy has a chance.

He added that, as the CIA sees it, the ramped-up backing of rebels is an expansion of a strategy that is already not working. “The CIA also believes that its previous assignment to accomplish this was basically a fool’s errand, and they are well aware of the fact that many of the arms that they provided ended up in the wrong hands,” the congressman said, echoing intelligence sources.

Also troubling is that the ambassador handling ISIS policy, Anne Patterson, was a supporter of Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.  She is not well-liked in Egypt as a result.  Also she was very optimistic about US policy in Libya--Libya is in shambles (not to mention the Benghazi affair).

The country seems to be in the very best of hands.

But the founder of Blackwater says he could take care of the job, but the Obama administration put this controversial private contractor out-of-business. 

“It’s a shame the [Obama] administration crushed my old business, because as a private organization, we could’ve solved the boots-on-the-ground issue, we could have had contracts from people that want to go there as contractors; you don’t have the argument of U.S. active duty going back in there,” Prince said in an on-stage discussion featuring retired four-star Gen. James Conway. “[They could have] gone in there and done it, and be done, and not have a long, protracted political mess that I predict will ensue.”

Wednesday, September 03, 2014


Megan McArdle discusses the liberals as the new authoritarians.

Jonathan Haidt, one of my favorite social scientists, studies morality by presenting people with scenarios and asking whether what happened was wrong. Conservatives and liberals give strikingly different answers, with extreme liberals claiming to place virtually no value at all on things like group loyalty or sexual purity.

Jeremy Frimer, the author of the piece, noticed that socialists seemed unable to tolerate even mild questioning of Che Guevara’s eminently questionable legacy. Frimer is a researcher at the University of Winnipeg, and he decided to investigate. What he found is that liberals are actually very comfortable with authority and obedience -- as long as the authorities are liberals (“should you obey an environmentalist?”). And that conservatives then became much less willing to go along with “the man in charge.”

Monday, September 01, 2014


From The Weekly Standard.

President Barack Obama said last night at a Democratic fundraiser in Rhode Island that the terrorism from ISIS "doesn’t immediately threaten the homeland." The reason? The security measures taken by President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, according to Obama.

First the president said the situation in the Middle East is "scary," according to a transcript of the event released by the White House.

"I don’t have to tell you, anybody who has been watching TV this summer, it seems like it is just wave after wave ofupheaval, most of it surrounding the Middle East. You’re seeing a change in the order in the Middle East. But the old order is having a tough time holding together and the new order has yet to be born, and in the interim, it’s scary."

Then he told the Democratic donors not to worry because measures put in place by Bush and Cheney "make us ... pretty safe."

But he obviously doesn't mention Bush or Cheney in his speech.

Saturday, August 30, 2014


Michael Ledeen argues that Obama does have a plan--he is trying to establish an alliance with Iran and is using Valerie Jarrett (of Iranian descent) as a major intermediary to the ayatollahs.

The actual strategy is detente first, and then a full alliance with Iran throughout the Middle East and North Africa. It has been on display since before the beginning of the Obama administration. During his first presidential campaign in 2008, Mr. Obama used a secret back channel to Tehran to assure the mullahs that he was a friend of the Islamic Republic, and that they would be very happy with his policies. The secret channel was Ambassador William G. Miller, who served in Iran during the shah’s rule, as chief of staff for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and as ambassador to Ukraine. Ambassador Miller has confirmed to me his conversations with Iranian leaders during the 2008 campaign.

Ever since, President Obama’s quest for an alliance with Iran has been conducted through at least four channels: Iraq, Switzerland (the official U.S. representative to Tehran), Oman and a variety of American intermediaries, the most notable of whom is probably Valerie Jarrett, his closest adviser. In recent months, Middle Eastern leaders reported personal visits from Ms. Jarrett, who briefed them on her efforts to manage the Iranian relationship. This was confirmed to me by a former high-ranking American official who says he was so informed by several Middle Eastern leaders.


A pretty strong indictment of President Obama by Charles Krauthammer regarding Obama's leadership and decision-making process.


Andrew Stuttaford at the National Review writes about the "Guns of August" which is a term used regarding the start of battles in World War I.  He quotes from an article by Anne Applebaum in Slate which discusses the new maps circulating in Russia showing the borders of Catherine the Great.

…In the past few days, Russian troops bearing the flag of a previously unknown country, Novorossiya, have marched across the border of southeastern Ukraine. The Russian Academy of Sciences recently announced it will publish a history of Novorossiya this autumn, presumably tracing its origins back to Catherine the Great. Various maps of Novorossiya are said to be circulating in Moscow. Some include Kharkov and Dnipropetrovsk, cities that are still hundreds of miles away from the fighting. Some place Novorossiya along the coast, so that it connects Russia to Crimea and eventually to Transnistria, the Russian-occupied province of Moldova. Even if it starts out as an unrecognized rump state—Abkhazia and South Ossetia, “states” that Russia carved out of Georgia, are the models here—Novorossiya can grow larger over time….

Applebaum is predicting that Putin will test NATO in the foreseeable future.  Stuttaford discusses other the comments of several other writers critical of Obama and the West's response and indicating a growing fear in Eastern Europe about Russian aggression against them.

Friday, August 29, 2014


From the Atlantic Monthly.  The author's view of the importance of history is confined by his philosophical and political biases.  And his understanding of World War I is rather limited.  I read this and wondered why would anyone want to study history after reading this.


Henry Kissinger has an essay on the need for a new geopolitical response to the events in the Middle East and the Ukraine.

To play a responsible role in the evolution of a 21st-century world order, the U.S. must be prepared to answer a number of questions for itself: What do we seek to prevent, no matter how it happens, and if necessary alone? What do we seek to achieve, even if not supported by any multilateral effort? What do we seek to achieve, or prevent, only if supported by an alliance? What should we not engage in, even if urged on by a multilateral group or an alliance? What is the nature of the values that we seek to advance? And how much does the application of these values depend on circumstance?

For the U.S., this will require thinking on two seemingly contradictory levels. The celebration of universal principles needs to be paired with recognition of the reality of other regions' histories, cultures and views of their security. Even as the lessons of challenging decades are examined, the affirmation of America's exceptional nature must be sustained. History offers no respite to countries that set aside their sense of identity in favor of a seemingly less arduous course. But nor does it assure success for the most elevated convictions in the absence of a comprehensive geopolitical strategy.

While Obama is looking for a strategy, Angelo Codevilla, writes about his proposals to end the ISIS threat at The Federalist.  The physical destruction of ISIS is one thing but it is the spirit of ISIS that must be destroyed.  He also advocates pressuring Qatar and Turkey who are giving ISIS support.

Killing the IS requires neither more nor less than waging war—not as the former administration waged its “war on terror,” nor by the current administration’s pinpricks, nor according to the too-clever-by-half stratagems taught in today’s politically correct military war colleges, but rather by war in the dictionary meaning of the word. To make war is to kill the spirit as well as the body of the enemy, so terribly as to make sure that it will not rise again, and that nobody will want to imitate it.
A captured Dell computer reveals Isis plans, including the use of biological warfare.

The laptop also includes a 26-page fatwa, or Islamic ruling, on the usage of weapons of mass destruction. "If Muslims cannot defeat the kafir[unbelievers] in a different way, it is permissible to use weapons of mass destruction," states the fatwa by Saudi jihadi cleric Nasir al-Fahd, who is currently imprisoned in Saudi Arabia. "Even if it kills all of them and wipes them and their descendants off the face of the Earth."

ISIS has another recruit, the Fort Hood shooter.  I thought the government and the media said this guy wasn't a terrorist lurking in the military?  

And the government and media do not seem concerned about terrorists crossing the Mexican border. On ABC Nightly News this Friday there was no mention of this possibility.

Islamic terrorist groups are operating in the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez and planning to attack the United States with car bombs or other vehicle born improvised explosive devices (VBIED). High-level federal law enforcement, intelligence and other sources have confirmed to Judicial Watch that a warning bulletin for an imminent terrorist attack on the border has been issued. Agents across a number of Homeland Security, Justice and Defense agencies have all been placed on alert and instructed to aggressively work all possible leads and sources concerning this imminent terrorist threat.

Chechens trained ISIS fighters.

Thursday, August 28, 2014


Headline in WAPO column written by Jennifer Rubin:  "Russia Invades, Obama Expresses 'Concern'". "Concern" is a rather low-key response to a major step in Russian involvement in the Ukraine.  It is a rather tepid word and I am sure Putin is not particularly alarmed.  Putin is going to keep pushing since there is no resistance from Washington or Europe.

“These incursions indicate a Russian-directed counteroffensive is likely underway in Donetsk and Luhansk. Clearly, that is of deep concern to us,” a State Department spokeswoman said yesterday. She could not have been more inoffensive. Oh, the administration is also “concerned by the Russian Government’s unwillingness to tell the truth even as its soldiers are found 30 miles inside Ukraine. Russia is sending its young men into Ukraine but are telling – are not telling them where they’re going or telling their parents what they’re doing.” The spokeswoman further indicated that we wouldn’t change our policy of refusing to provide Ukraine with defensive weapons.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014


Matt Friedman, a former AP reporter, writes about how the American media covers Israel, Gaza, and the Middle East.  Instead of reporting news, the major news outlets have established the scenario they wish to report and assume that exist.  They are so focused on Jews and Israel that they neglect or intentionally fail to cover what is happening in the Arab world from Gaza to Iraq and Syria.

The world is not responding to events in this country, but rather to the description of these events by news organizations. 

Israel is over-covered: Staffing is the best measure of the importance of a story to a particular news organization. When I was a correspondent at the AP, the agency had more than 40 staffers covering Israel and the Palestinian territories. That was significantly more news staff than the AP had in China, Russia, or India, or in all of the 50 countries of sub-Saharan Africa combined. It was higher than the total number of news-gathering employees in all the countries where the uprisings of the “Arab Spring” eventually erupted.

Some examples of inadequate news coverage:

If you follow mainstream coverage, you will find nearly no real analysis of Palestinian society or ideologies, profiles of armed Palestinian groups, or investigation of Palestinian government. Palestinians are not taken seriously as agents of their own fate. The West has decided that Palestinians should want a state alongside Israel, so that opinion is attributed to them as fact, though anyone who has spent time with actual Palestinians understands that things are (understandably, in my opinion) more complicated. Who they are and what they want is not important: The story mandates that they exist as passive victims of the party that matters.

There has been much discussion recently of Hamas attempts to intimidate reporters. Any veteran of the press corps here knows the intimidation is real, and I saw it in action myself as an editor on the AP news desk. During the 2008-2009 Gaza fighting I personally erased a key detail—that Hamas fighters were dressed as civilians and being counted as civilians in the death toll—because of a threat to our reporter in Gaza. (The policy was then, and remains, not to inform readers that the story is censored unless the censorship is Israeli. Earlier this month, the AP’s Jerusalem news editor reported and submitted a story on Hamas intimidation; the story was shunted into deep freeze by his superiors and has not been published.)

In early 2009, for example, two colleagues of mine obtained information that Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert had made a significant peace offer to the Palestinian Authority several months earlier, and that the Palestinians had deemed it insufficient. This had not been reported yet and it was—or should have been—one of the biggest stories of the year. The reporters obtained confirmation from both sides and one even saw a map, but the top editors at the bureau decided that they would not publish the story.

All of this means is that Americans are not reading or seeing the real story, not just about Israel, but about the hopes and dreams of Palestinians who often live in fear of Hamas and other radicals.

Monday, August 25, 2014


Shocker.  Britain is poorer than every state except Mississippi.  Britain has had the welfare state since the end of World War II but it clearly has not improved the welfare of the average Brit.  I am not sure Washington is listening.  But not even the Brits realize how bad they off they are. . .but ironically they do criticize the economic inequality in America.

I came across a striking fact while researching this piece: if Britain were to somehow leave the EU and join the US how would we rank? The answer is that we’d be the 2nd-poorest state in the union, poorer than Missouri. Poorer than the much-maligned Kansas and Alabama. Poorer than any state other than Mississippi, and if you take out the south east we’d be poorer than that too.


Recently there has been more criticism in the media of Obama but it clearly doesn't rise to the level of how Bush had been treated.

Powerline has a summary of recent press criticisms of Obama.  The left-liberal establishment is in crisis at the moment. They can’t make up their mind between desperately trying to prop up Obama, and giving up on him and increasing their distance.

Kyle Smith at the New York Post discusses why comedians and Saturday Night Live have trouble making fun of Obama like they do other politicians, especially when he has said some things that could be used in a skit.  Downey comments in “Live from New York,” “I have to say, and even [Al] Franken agrees with me — I’ve talked to him about this — that the last couple seasons of the show were the only two in the show’s history where we were totally like every other comedy show: basically, an arm of the Hollywood Democratic establishment. . . . We just stopped doing anything which could even be misinterpreted as a criticism of Obama.”

Leftist Cornel West always speaks his mind and has changed his view of Obama.  I wonder if I will hear this on the nightly news.  And we ended up with a brown-faced Clinton. Another opportunist. Another neoliberal opportunist.

Meet the Press goes after Senator Rand Paul (R, KY) implying that he was trying to gain publicity for his charitable medical work in Guatemala while not criticizing Obama for golfing or expensive vacations.


A summary of nine of the times Senator Harry Reid (D, NV) has "mispoken."  The media doesn't seem to make a big issue of Democrat gaffs.  If a Republican said some of these things, it would be front-page news and probably the media would drive them from office.


With the court indictment against Governor Perry (R, TX), Bryan Preston examines 8 cases where the Democrats tried to use the courts to hurt Republican chances in an election.  Most were frivolous, but obviously the Republican faced an image problem as a result and in some cases lost an election.


From National Review:  "How the College Board Politicized U.S. History."

The College Board, the private company that produces the SAT test and the various Advanced Placement (AP) exams, has kicked off a national controversy by issuing a new and unprecedentedly detailed “Framework” for its AP U.S. History exam. This Framework will effectively force American high schools to teach U.S. history from a leftist perspective. The College Board disclaims political intent, insisting that the new Framework provides a “balanced” guide that merely helps to streamline the AP U.S. History course while enhancing teacher flexibility. Not only the Framework itself, but the history of its development suggests that a balanced presentation of the American story was not the College Board’s goal.

The origins of the new AP U.S. History framework are closely tied to a movement of left-leaning historians that aims to “internationalize” the teaching of American history. The goal is to “end American history as we have known it” by substituting a more “transnational” narrative for the traditional account.

This movement’s goals are clearly political, and include the promotion of an American foreign policy that eschews the unilateral use of force. The movement to “internationalize” the U.S. History curriculum also seeks to produce a generation of Americans more amendable to working through the United Nations and various left-leaning “non-governmental organizations” (NGOs) on issues like the environment and nuclear proliferation. A willingness to use foreign law to interpret the U.S. Constitution is likewise encouraged.

The College Board formed a close alliance with this movement to internationalize the teaching of American history just prior to initiating its redesign of the AP U.S. History exam. Key figures in that alliance are now in charge of the AP U.S. History redesign process, including the committee charged with writing the new AP U.S. History exam. The new AP U.S. History Framework clearly shows the imprint of the movement to de-nationalize American history. Before I trace the rise of this movement and its ties to the College Board, let’s have a closer look at its goals.

The article goes on to discuss the political views of the writers of the curriculum who are clearly leftists.  

Friday, August 22, 2014


Fat cat Democrats are giving mega millions to PACS to try to keep Democrats in control of the Senate.  All you read about in the media is how much fat cat Republicans are giving to PACS, but Democrats have more than their share of big money donors.


Interesting.  Republicans are more likely to support Obama for his actions in bombing ISIS in Iraq than Democrats.

The Aug. 13-17 survey, which has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points, found that 61 percent of self-identified Republican respondents support the airstrikes, while only 54 percent of Democrats say the same.

This obviously puts the president in a difficult position: Does he continue the airstrikes on ISIS, as many Americans prefer he would? Or does Obama appease his base by discontinuing the attacks?

If he the president caves to his base, then he loses support from a broad range of voters, some of whom want him to take stronger action. But if he stays the course and continues going after ISIS with limited strikes, he then runs the risk of alienating members of his party.

In January 2014 Obama dismissed ISIS as the "junior varsity" when compared to al Qaeda.  I wonder if he still believes this?

In the 2012 campaign, Obama spoke not only of killing Osama bin Laden; he also said that Al Qaeda had been “decimated.” I pointed out that the flag of Al Qaeda is now flying in Falluja, in Iraq, and among various rebel factions in Syria; Al Qaeda has asserted a presence in parts of Africa, too.

“The analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a jayvee team puts on Lakers uniforms that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant,” Obama said, resorting to an uncharacteristically flip analogy. “I think there is a distinction between the capacity and reach of a bin Laden and a network that is actively planning major terrorist plots against the homeland versus jihadists who are engaged in various local power struggles and disputes, often sectarian

Also see The Blaze. Or the comment at National Review.

Thursday, August 21, 2014


From the Hoover Institution.  "Chaos in Libya."  The Obama administration's NATO involvement in Libya has created a worse situation today.  I think some of the lessons learned could also be applied to Bush sending troops into Iraq or Obama upping US involvement in Afghanistan.

A lesson—immediately relevant as the United States now conducts air strikes in Iraq to protect vulnerable populations from slaughter by barbaric militants—is that successful humanitarian intervention requires a viable reconstruction plan. That may seem like an obvious statement, applicable to many types of military adventure, but it is easy to dismiss when faced with a short-term opportunity to stop the most flagrant atrocities.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014


From the Gatestone Institute.  Religious and ethnic clashes are spilling over into Germany.  And the German press seems to be reporting this problem (unlike the U.S. media).

Supporters of the jihadist group "Islamic State" [IS] have clashed with Kurdish Yazidis in North Rhine-Westphalia, the state with the largest Muslim population in Germany.

The violence—which comes amid threats by a German jihadist to blow up an American nuclear weapons storage facility in Germany—has counter-terrorism officials concerned that radical Muslims are deliberately exploiting the ethnic and religious tensions in the Middle East to stir up trouble on the streets of Europe.

Police say the Muslim-Yazidi clash was triggered after six Islamists stormed a restaurant in the eastern Westphalian town of Herford at around 4 pm on August 7. The Muslims were attempting forcibly to remove a poster inviting people to join a demonstration in support of the Yazidis in Iraq.


From an op-ed in the New York Times:  "Who will stand up for the Christians."

WHY is the world silent while Christians are being slaughtered in the Middle East and Africa? In Europe and in the United States, we have witnessed demonstrations over the tragic deaths of Palestinians who have been used as human shields byHamas, the terrorist organization that controls Gaza. The United Nations has held inquiries and focuses its anger on Israel for defending itself against that same terrorist organization. But the barbarous slaughter of thousands upon thousands of Christians is met with relative indifference.


From the Washington Post.  Clips of things Romney said that WAPO believes he got wrong, but there were far more clips on what Romney got right and was ridiculed for saying by Obama and the media.

Thursday, August 14, 2014


Michael Totten discusses how reporters were controlled in Gaza by Hamas.  Israel mistakes will be made public because the international press has more freedom to report there.

The Foreign Press Association is protesting “in the strongest terms the blatant, incessant, forceful and unorthodox methods employed by the Hamas authorities and their representatives against visiting international journalists in Gaza over the past month."


There are a number of very clever ads produced by those supporting fracking in Colorado.

Friday, August 08, 2014


Ann Coulter, the darling of "non-compassionate" conservatives, blames the American doctor for catching Ebola.

Conservative commentator Ann Coulter criticized the American doctor who contracted Ebola in Africa, arguing that his missionary efforts had caused more harm than good.

“Whatever good Dr. Kent Brantly did in Liberia has now been overwhelmed by the more than $2 million already paid by the Christian charities Samaritan’s Purse and SIM USA just to fly him and his nurse home in separate Gulfstream jets, specially equipped with medical tents, and to care for them at one of America’s premier hospitals,” wrote Coulter in a post for Human Events.

She calls him a "narcisstic Christian."


VICE video of ISIS on spreading the Caliphate.

VICE video on Kurds as they face ISIS.

National Journal:  "The World Will Blame President Obama if Iraq Falls."

Biden calling Iraq "one of the greatest achievements of this administration."  What Democrats were saying about Iraq since the late 1990s.

NBC News.  Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama said Thursday the United States cannot use its military to solve humanitarian problems and that preventing a potential genocide in Iraq isn’t a good enough reason to keep U.S. forces there.

Ann Althouse believes Obama is trapped by his rhetoric.  She "pictures the enemy laughing" at Obama's speech on August 7, 2014.

A.B. Stoddard in The Hill calls Obama an "impotent president."

Obama promises never to allow genocide to go unpunished.

Michael Crowley at Time:  "How Obama Evolved on the Issue of 'Genocide' in Iraq."


The Gatestone Institute has a comprehensive list of all the locations in the world where radical Islam is killing Christians.  It is not just ISIS in Iraq and Syria where Christians face death.

Despite all these atrocities, exoduses, and even genocides, the mainstream media seems to spend every available moment airing images of displaced Palestinians and demonizing Israel for trying to defend itself. Yet Israel does not kill Palestinians because of their religion or any other personal aspects. It does so in the context of being rocketed and trying to defend itself from terrorism.

On the other hand, all the crimes being committed by Muslims against Christians are simply motivated by religious hate, because the Christians are Christian.

It is to the mainstream media's great shame that those who slaughter, behead, crucify, and displace people for no other reason than because they are Christian, rarely if ever get media coverage, while a nation such as Israel, which kills only in the context of being self-defense, and not out of religious bigotry, is constantly demonized.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014


Various reports:

Charges that Gaza school attacks by Israel were staged by Hamas. reporting on how close to public buildings Hamas had placed rockets.

WND on God protecting Israel.

Sean Hannity of Fox News explores a tunnel.

"Hamas' Phony Statistics on Civilian Deaths."  The media should immediately stop using Hamas-approved statistics, which in the past have proved to be extremely unreliable. Instead, they should try to document, independently, the nature of each person killed and describe their age, gender, occupation, affiliation with Hamas and other objective factors relevant to their status as a combatant, non-combatant or someone in the middle. It is lazy and dangerous for the media to rely on Hamas-approved propaganda figures.

 The media doesn't count people put to death by Hamas.

According to the journalists, Taha was executed by a firing squad three days ago. They said that he died instantly of gunshots to the head and chest.

Hamas's armed wing, Izaddin al-Qassam, arrested Taha in 2013 on suspicion that he had served as an informant for the Egyptian General Intelligence Service.

Hamas sources said then that, in addition to the espionage charges, Taha was also suspected of involvement in a "big corruption scandal," but did not elaborate.

Sources in the Gaza Strip said on Thursday that Taha was executed because Hamas feared he might implicate some of its leaders in many corruption scandals. "The man knew too much about the senior leaders of Hamas," said a veteran journalist living in Gaza City who had close ties with Taha. "Hamas leaders used to take him with them on their visits to different countries."


A newsletter from the East-West Church and Ministry Report on how churches are responding to the situation in the Ukraine.


From Paul Bonicelli at Foreign Policy.

As Israel seeks to end Hamas's latest war against it, the Obama administration flounders. In fact, the response of the president and his secretary of state has made the situation positively worse with regard to every relationship we have in the region. Opponents of terrorism and supporters of Israel struggle to understand the administration's approach. Is it incompetence, or a continuation of this president's determination always to be above the fray -- as though the United States' only legitimate role is to midwife peace at any price rather than pursue policies that benefit it and its allies while defeating our enemies? A brief look at the actions in this conflict clarifies the question, even if it doesn't answer it.

I thought these statements were particularly telling:

But tragically, the Obama administration's actions and assertions reveal it does not understand where U.S. interests lie or how to achieve them.

Even the Washington Post, loathe to criticize the president, sees blundering in the administration's efforts. And in the U.S. government, only the Congress is getting it right, in bipartisan fashion.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014


From the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) web site.

IDF forces in the Gaza Strip found a Hamas manual on “Urban Warfare,” which belonged to the Shuja’iya Brigade of Hamas’ military wing, the Al-Qassam Brigades. The manual explains how the civilian population can be used against IDF forces and reveals that Hamas knows the IDF is committed to minimizing harm to civilians.

And also at this site it shows how accurate the IDF was in knowing where rockets were being fired from. I suspected something like this.

Shuja'iya terror sites

And this site has maps of Gaza.

The fact that these sparsely populated areas exist in the Gaza Strip raise several important moral questions: First, why don't the media show the relatively open areas of the Gaza Strip? Why do they only show the densely populated cities? There are several possible reasons. There is no fighting going on in the sparsely populated areas, so showing them would be boring. But that's precisely the point—to show areas from which Hamas could be firing rockets and building tunnels but has chosen not to. Or perhaps the reason the media doesn't show these areas is that Hamas won't let them. That too would be a story worth reporting.

Second, why doesn't Hamas use sparsely populated areas from which to launch its rockets and build its tunnels? Were it to do so, Palestinian civilian casualties would decrease dramatically, but the casualty rate among Hamas terrorists would increase dramatically.


A Democrat congresswomen from California posed a young female sailor in uniform in one of her campaign brochures.  The problem was that the model was not in a U.S. navy uniform, but rather a uniform of the German Luftwaffe. Not only is it not an American uniform and it was a uniform on an entirely different branch of the military.  Someone needs a historian to watch for these things or at least someone who has some ability not just to copy something from the internet.


The media and the American public are criticizing a do-nothing Congress.  But who is not doing anything in Congress?  It is Harry Reid's Democrat controlled Senate according to Jennifer Rubin at WAPO.  They have not considered almost any of the legislation passed by the Republican controlled House.  Harry Reid could at least have a vote on the legislation and then as usually happens when the two bodies of Congress disagree sit down in a joint committee and try to hammer out compromise legislation.

The Senate has not voted on jobs bills sent by the House, any “fix” for Obamacare or a domestic energy development bill. The Senate will not take up a real vote on the Keystone XL pipeline. It will not take up Iran sanctions. It did pass Veterans Affairs legislation and Iron Dome funding, not exactly difficult votes. Other than that, not much of consequence has gone on in the Senate, but not because of Republican objections. The GOP would love to take up many of these subjects, debate them and offer amendments; it is Reid who either won’t take up meaty issues or won’t allow any minority amendments, a practice he has taken further than any modern Senate leader. Speaking to the press on Tuesday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said succinctly: “Well, if you look at the last six years, the president and his people, I think, believed they got just about everything they wanted legislatively the first two years.”

Monday, August 04, 2014


How can any candidate protect themselves from dirty tricks?  In this case some Democrat women got together to broadcast radio ads that a Republican Senatorial candidate in Mississippi was linked to the KKK.

Asked why she felt the need to get involved in runoff campaign and run ads with hard-hitting language that suggested McDaniel and the Tea Party were racists who would return Mississippi to the state’s ugly segregationist past, Harris said: “One being, [McDaniel saying he] wouldn’t stoop so low for asking for a Democratic vote. And the way politics is going, it seemed liked something we needed to do.”

McDaniel lost.

And in Kentucky Democrats are attacking Senator McConnell's wife for not being "Kentuckian" enough--she is Asian.


Former President Clinton has spoken out forthrightly about a number of issues.  I am not sure he is totally following the Obama administration line.

Former President Bill Clinton on Saturday sharply criticized Hamas for deliberately endangering civilians and using international aid to build a network of tunnels into Israel.

“I'm really worried about Ukraine,” Clinton said. His foundation's work has introduced him to activists and politicians throughout the country, he said. “I know a lot of those reformers. They don't want a hateful relationship with Russia. They just want to be free. They want to be a bridge between Europe and Russia.”


From the Washington Examiner with the HuffPost as its source.  All this talk about Democrats opposing big business is just "smoke and mirrors" for its constituents.  They want to use Wall Street money just as badly as Republicans do.  And if they can control the bureaucracy and big business see themselves as being in a very powerful political position.

Congressional battles over the Export-Import Bank and terrorism insurance are an opportunity for Democrats to win back corporate elites who abandoned the party after the passage of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reforms, according to one of that law's primary architects, former Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.).

"I think this is finally starting to get to the business community now," he told HuffPost during a July interview. "Part of this was the real significance of the defeat of [then-House Majority Leader] Eric Cantor. Eric Cantor was one of [Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd] Blankfein's best friends in government. His wife used to work [at Goldman] and they were personally friendly -- of course, a great recipient of money. And then Cantor loses and nowKevin McCarthy shifts his position on the Export-Import Bank."

Sunday, August 03, 2014


Der Spiegel has reported that Israel and another unnamed state eavesdropped on Secretary of State Kerry's telephone calls in the Middle East last year.  What I can't figure out is why was he making some calls over an unsecured line?  Does he do this regularly?  If so every respectable espionage agency is going to know what he and the State Department are thinking.

Saturday, August 02, 2014


The Christian Science Monitor has analyzed the latest Pew Research polling data on American attitudes toward Hamas and Israel in the recent Gaza crisis.

But according to a new poll from the Pew Research Center, this support is less monolithic than one might think.

How one views Israel in the recent Gaza conflict depends largely on race, age, and political affiliation, the poll indicates. While 40 percent of Americans overall see the Palestinian militant group as the prime instigator of the current violence versus 19 percent who blame the Israelis, this gap is smaller – and even nonexistent – within certain demographic groups.

For the first time pro-Hamas demonstrations are occurring on the streets of American cities. They are more widespread and serious in Europe, but nevertheless I never recall a public display like I have seen in a number of major American cities for any radical Islamist power. Now, I think the majority are Arab immigrants, but nevertheless they are in the streets, even in front of the White House. This is not just an issue for the future of Israel in the Middle East, but also what kind of country America will be in coming years. Support for Israel has been a hallmark of American foreign policy since President Truman.

Support for Israel in the U.S. varies based on age. Younger Americans are more likely to be pro-Hamas than older Americans. I have not read reasons for this trend: is it a result of ignorance or pro-Palestinian professors in American universities, or something else. This will become a more serious issue for Israel as older Americans die off. And I think this includes evangelical Christian young people.

It is clear that the age of dispensational theology in evangelical churches is disappearing. This theology has always strongly supported Israel based on its interpretations of prophecy. But now that theology is dying out as the older generation of pastors and theology professors pass on. I do not expect future evangelical pastors and theology professors to be as supportive of Israel.

From Legal Insurrection:  “Angry Black Woman” to anti-Israel activists: Stop pilfering civil rights legacy for your “repugnant agenda”

From Calgary, Canada:  "Pro-Palestinian Protesters in Calgary: 'All Hail Hitler.'"


Barney Frank was an ultra-liberal, homosexual Democrat congressman from Massachusetts who has called Obama a liar for what he said about the roll out of Obamacare.  Frank was always outspoken, but this surely will not help the Democrat cause.

President Barack Obama made a major political mistake by lying about the details of his health care plan, according to former House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-Mass.).

"The rollout was so bad, and I was appalled -- I don't understand how the president could have sat there and not been checking on that on a weekly basis," Frank told HuffPost during a July interview. "But frankly, he should never have said as much as he did, that if you like your current health care plan, you can keep it. That wasn't true. And you shouldn't lie to people. And they just lied to people."


I am with Larry Kudlow on this -- Republicans seem to have no thoughtful alternatives to Obama and the Democrats. Republicans need to develop a vision or agenda and they certainly have not done so up to this point.  They have no message or solutions to communicate to voters.

And here's what I see as a big part of the problem: Instead of putting forth a clear growth message — like a new Contract with America — congressional Republicans this week voted for a lawsuit challenging President Obama's abuse of executive power.

Now, suing the president is different from impeaching the president. But is it so different in the public's eye? And don't most people think this lawsuit will go nowhere? And isn't this just a big distraction from key issues, like the economy, tax reform, regulatory rollbacks, immigration reform, and rewriting  Obamacare?


From ABC News -- a confrontation between Nancy Pelosi and a Republican congressman on the House floor.  He accused her and the Obama administration of not doing anything with the border crisis in 2008 and 2009 when Democrats controlled the House.

In an unusual breach of decorum, even for the divided Congress, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi chased Rep. Tom Marino across the House floor, taking offense at comments by the Pennsylvania Republican during debate on the border funding bill Friday night.

“We don’t have law and order,” Marino began as he wrapped up his comments on the border supplemental. “My colleagues on the other side don’t want to do anything about it.”

“You know something that I find quite interesting about the other side? Under the leadership of the former Speaker [Pelosi], and under the leadership of their former leader [Rep. Steny Hoyer], when in 2009 and 2010, they had the House, the Senate and the White House, and they knew this problem existed,” he continued. “They didn’t have the strength to go after it back then. But now are trying to make a political issue out of it now.”

Off-mic, Pelosi then approached Marino, crossing the aisle in view of cameras, and apparently challenged Marino’s assertion that Democrats did not do anything about the issue when they had majority control.

“Yes it is true,” Marino replied directly to Pelosi, who was House speaker in those years. “I did the research on it. You might want to try it. You might want to try it, Madam Leader. Do the research on it. Do the research. I did it. That’s one thing that you don’t do.”

Friday, August 01, 2014


Obamacare has been ripped by critics for its computer technology failures and huge cost overruns, but this seems to be a problem related to big government bureaucracies.  Now the Department of State computer has crashed and it has been impossible for a foreigner traveling to the United States to get a visa for at least two weeks. We are looking more like a Third World country.  The Bayern Munich football club has been prevented from coming to America to play!  But it also has deprived thousands of other legitimate travelers access to America.  But maybe they should fly to Mexico City and just cross the Rio Grande?

The US Consular Consolidated Database (CCD) at the State Bureau of Consular Affairs “is currently experiencing technical problems with our passport/visa system,” US State Department deputy spokesperson Marie Harf revealed at a media briefing, adding that the database has actually been“experiencing intermittent performance issues for several months” now.


From WAPO.  "Study: Hundreds of rules passed by Obama administration are technically illegal."  What is the difference between "technically illegal" and "illegal".  Could I use this phrasing to get out of a traffic ticket?

There’s a problem, however: Technically speaking, these and about 1,800 other regulations shouldn’t be in effect, because they weren’t reported to Congress as required. Yet there is little that lawmakers or the courts can do about it.

The situation illustrates the obscure, byzantine process used to create federal regulations — and how easily it can go awry.

“It’s pretty apparent that the system is broken,” said Curtis Copeland, a retired Congressional Research Service staffer who discovered the issue. “It would seem this is one area where congressional Republicans and Democrats could get together and say: ‘This is crazy. We can fix this.’ ”

Under a 1996 statute, most federal rules are supposed to be reported to the House and Senate in paper form and to the Government Accountability Office electronically. But since the start of 2012, that hasn’t happened for many of the regulations put out by the Obama administration, either because of bureaucratic oversight or because they were considered too minor to be reported.


From Investor's Daily.  I wonder if they will target liberal churches or just conservative churches?

A lawsuit filed by the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) asserted that the Internal Revenue Service ignored complaints about churches' violating their tax-exempt status by routinely promoting political issues, legislation and candidates from the pulpit.

The FFRF has temporarily withdrawn its suit in return for the IRS's agreement to monitor sermons and homilies for proscribed speech that the foundation believes includes things like condemnation of gay marriage and criticism of ObamaCare for its contraceptive mandate.

The irony of this agreement is that it's being enforced by the same Tax Exempt and Government Entities Division of the IRS that was once headed by Lois "Fifth Amendment" Lerner and that openly targeted Tea Party and other conservative groups.

Among the questions that the IRS asked of those targeted groups was the content of their prayers.

Thursday, July 31, 2014


From Roger Cohen at the Atlantic.  "Yes, It Could Happen Again."

Then, as now, Europe had lived through a long period of relative peace, after the end of the Napoleonic Wars. Then, too, rapid progress in science, technology, and communications had given humanity a sense of shared interests that precluded war, despite the ominous naval competition between Britain and Germany. Then, too, wealthy individuals devoted their fortunes to conciliation and greater human understanding. Rival powers fumed over provocative annexations, like Austria-Hungary’s of Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1908, but world leaders scarcely believed a global conflagration was possible, let alone that one would begin just six years later. The very monarchs who would consign tens of millions to a murderous morass from 1914 to 1918 and bury four empires believed they were clever enough to finesse the worst.

The unimaginable can occur. That is a notion at once banal and perennially useful to recall. Indeed, it has just happened in Crimea, where a major power has forcefully changed a European border for the first time since 1945. Russia’s act of annexation and its evident designs on eastern Ukraine constitute a reminder thatNATO was created to protect Europe after its pair of 20th-century self-immolations. NATO’s core precept, as the Poles and other former vassals of the Soviet empire like to remind blithe western Europeans, is Article 5, by which the Allies agreed that “an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all,” triggering a joint military response. This has proved a powerful deterrent against potential adversaries. Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, has been most aggressive in the no-man’s-lands of Georgia and Ukraine, nations suspended between East and West, neither one a member of NATO. Had Ukraine been a member ofNATO, the annexation of Crimea would have come only at the (presumably unacceptable) price of war. Article 5, until demonstrated otherwise, is an ironclad commitment.

"The unimaginable" can indeed occur.  There is a lot of instability in the world today.

I keep reading more articles on this theme of impending war, including Time's recent cover issue on is there a new cold war.  I think there is a lot of uncertainty out there.

Denison Forum.

Time magazine's new cover describes the current conflict between Russia and the West as "Cold War II." Could it get even worse? As the world remembers the beginning of World War I a century ago, some warn that another world war could start in Ukraine. For instance, the British Prime Minister made headlines this week with his claim that Russia's encroachment in Eastern Europe is eerily similar to actions that led to World War I and World War II.