Kidnapped by Japan - How A Mother's Dying Wish Led To A Father's Unimaginable Loss

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Friday, June 27, 2008

Friday Zen

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Governor Palin - Oh Yes!

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I have made my crush on the good governor clear in an earlier post. Ok, deregulating the oil companies may not exactly be all that do-able right now as AllahPundit at Hot Air points out, but it would be the right thing. So the crush continues. *SIGH*

Stop The ACLU also is smitten

The Audacity To Be A Dope

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Attendant with Barack Obama's ascension (an important word here) to the position of soon-to-be Democratic Presidential nominee has come some of the strangest behaviors from his, that word doesn't really capture it...disciples is nearer to the reality, ever witnessed in a political campaign. From the oooh-ing and ahh-ing and applause when he has to blow his nose to the gyrations of the "Obama Girl" to the recent statement by the ubiquitous P. Diddy (is that still his name, by the way?), "Obama or die!", these folks have simply lost it.

Some of the most astounding examples of the kind of mental decompensation that is going on can be found in print. Warren Bolton, Associate Editor of The has written a column that typifies what passes for reasoned analysis in the ranks of the Obamessiah's acolytes. It is a thing of wonder:

MANY HAVE OPINED about what Sen. Barack Obama’s phenomenal win in the Democratic presidential primary and his possible ascension [there it is] to the presidency mean to this nation.

Just the elementary historical facts are powerful enough: There has never been a black president. An African-American had never come close to winning a major-party nomination. None had been part of a majority-party ticket.

What does Sen. Obama’s nomination say about race and race relations in America? What does it say about opportunity for people of color? Those are the kinds of questions many a pundit has tried to put into perspective.

Of course, most importantly, Sen. Obama’s ascension
[there it is, again!] says a lot about, well, Sen. Obama. It says his powerful gift of oratory and his message of change connected. His ability to build and manage an extraordinary campaign network and to raise funds is superior. His idealism that America can unite beyond race and politics and age worked.
Ok, not so crazy so far, except for overdoing the "ascension" [hint hint] thing. That's a bit disturbing, no? But next he jumps into the deep end without a life preserver and doesn't bother to take a breath.
As I’ve considered Sen. Obama’s accomplishment, I’ve determined the most profound impact he’s had — not considering the possibility of him becoming president and proving to be one of our better ones — is on our future more than our present or our history.

I didn’t grasp that until I took my 2-year-old to the doctor last week and he took a vision exam. It was through young Alexander’s eyes that I saw how important this moment in time could be.

The nurse administering the exam pointed to different shapes and images on a chart, asking Alexander to identify each. One of the recurring images was that of a flag. It wasn’t an American flag, but a flag just the same.

To a 2-year-old, a flag is a flag, right? Alexander is most familiar with the U.S. flag. When the nurse pointed to the flag, he answered confidently.

Barack Obama,” he said, pronouncing it as best as a 2-year-old could.

“What did you say?” she asked.

Barack Obama.”

As she went through the chart, she once again came to the flag.

Barack Obama.”

“Do you know what he’s saying?” I asked her.


“He’s saying Barack Obama.” Why? Because he was making an association. Most times when he’s seen Sen. Obama on TV, the Democratic nominee has been standing in front of the U.S. flag.

The preceding just may be one of the craziest stories ever to try to pass itself off as journalism in the history of that checkered profession. His kid seems forced into this piece like a square peg smashed into a round hole with a sledgehammer by the Hulk in a particularly nasty mood. It is simply inane and utterly incoherent. In rereading it, the poor child seems afflicted with some sort of developmental perceptual deficit, unable to distinguish between a flag and Barack Obama. Instead of picking the poor boy up and running to have him tested Bolton is proud that the kid seems to think that Obama is a (not even an American, mind you) flag. Sadly the madness doesn't end there:
Whether Sen. Obama wins the presidency or not, he has had an untold effect on the future and psyche of America.

My son will live a lifetime in which he knows an African-American can ascend to the highest levels in this country. He won’t think it odd for a black man to seek to lead a nation. He as well as many white, Asian, Hispanic and other children, whether they like the candidate or not, won’t think it odd or a novelty to see a black man standing in front of the American flag — the ultimate display of patriotism, despite misguided and mean-spirited efforts to paint Sen. Obama as being otherwise — articulating his concerns and love for his country.

[Excuse my interruption here, but since when is "standing in front of the American flag" the "ultimate display of patriotism"? I always thought that dying or suffering for your country - you know, kind of like John McCain did - was the ultimate display of patriotism. But that was the definition, pre-Obama, I guess.]

Because of Barack Obama, many of our children won’t grow up with as many of the psychological bruises those before them might have endured.

Read that last line again. Because of Barack Obama many of the "psychological bruises" of childhood will be vanquished. How about pimples and bed-wetting? Surely he can end those, too?
I grew up being told that I could one day be president. But much of what I saw and heard suggested otherwise. I saw and experienced the discrimination. Blacks only secured the right to vote in my lifetime. I saw many black kids in school being steered away from advanced courses and training that would have prepared them to shoot for higher goals.

Not only does Sen. Obama’s feat help shape a 2-year-old’s thoughts about himself and the world around him, but it affects so many others, from high-schoolers to college students to older folks.

Think of the many people, particularly older citizens, who had determined they would never live to see a black president. Scarcely 200 years since the end of the evil slave trade, there’s a good chance it could happen.

I’ll never forget the e-mail I got from one of my sisters who was excited about Sen. Obama’s chances: “He has more going for him than any other black person who has ever tried for the presidency. I never thought this would happen in my life time, but now I see the possibility.”

Possibility. Hope. Change.

Ok, you just knew those three words were coming, didn't you? As usual they are disconnected to anything tangible in the real world, just sort of free-floating happiness that is beyond explanation. This is the Obamessiah's gift to us, I guess.

People sell those notions short. But they’re powerful. The fact is,
people of all races and backgrounds see different possibilities and hope in Sen. Obama. They see the
hope for a unified America that actually attempts to address issues such as
health care. It’s not so much that Sen. Obama can solve them alone — what president can? —
but they believe he can inspire Americans to rise up and help bring about
[Whatever the Hell that means.]

An Obama win doesn’t mean we’ve arrived in terms of race relations and
[You always want to leave that door open so you can play
the race card once more when a White guy gets into office again.]
But it would send a signal that we can arrive.

Even Congressman
James Clyburn, who
once said he would never live to see a black governor in South Carolina, was
moved by the possibility. He told ETV’s “The Big Picture” that he was overcome with
emotion watching Barack Obama become the first black major-party
presidential nominee. He said he left a public event and went home to watch Sen. Obama’s victory
speech alone “because what I was feeling was indescribable, and I was afraid
that I would not be able to control my emotions .”

Congressman Clyburn controlled himself
— that time. If Sen. Obama succeeds in November, Congressman Clyburn may not be able to
control his emotions.

He’ll have lots of company.

The only thing that makes any sense in this diatribe is that last sentence. And if that doesn't scare you, I don't know what could.

Welcome to American politics in the Promised Land.

Cross Posted at The Patriot Room

Keith Olbermann Gets Trashed

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It isn't exactly giving away a state secret to say that Keith Olbermann is a creepy, ambition-crazed, ego maniacal hypocrite whose shtick used to garner himself fame and fortune - assuming the role of a Moonbat Howard Beale - is as pathetic as the stories his ex-girlfriends tell about his amorous "abilities". Rare is the conservative blog that at one time or another that doesn't find itself drawn to some Olbermann outrage and then picking him apart, piece by gooey piece.

Despite some degree of apparent squeamishness about him, to the inhabitants of the political nether lands who inhabit such places as the Democratic Underground, the Daily Kos and the Huffington Post, of course he is the answer to Rush, O'Reilly, Hannity and Coulter all contained in one bug-eyed package. But it looks like Olbermann's inability to stick to anything even remotely resembling a principle has finally run afoul of some on the Left. In a Salon column that ran yesterday, author, litagator and columnist Glenn Greenwald took on Olbermann from the Left and the end result wasn't pretty.

What got Greenwald's hackles up was Olbermann's mendacity on the issue of Barack Obama's position on the FISA and telcom amnesty bill. Greenwald pegs how Olbermann's well cultivated outrage on FISA seems to be built on shifting sands when Obama essentially takes the same position on the issue that Bush does.First, his reaction to Bush's, before knowing about Obama's, stand:

On January 31 of this year, Keith Olbermann donned his most serious face and most indignant voice tone to rail against George Bush for supporting telecom immunity and revisions to FISA. In a 10-minute "Special Comment," the MSNBC star condemned Bush for wanting to "retroactively immunize corporate criminals," and said that telecom immnity is "an ex post facto law, which would clear the phone giants from responsibility for their systematic, aggressive and blatant collaboration with [Bush's] illegal and unjustified spying on Americans under this flimsy guise of looking for any terrorists who are stupid enough to make a collect call or send a mass email."

Olbermann added that telecom amnesty was a "shameless, breathless, literally textbook example of Fascism -- the merged efforts of government and corporations that answer to no government." Noting the numerous telecom lobbyists connected to the Bush administration, Olbermann said:

This is no longer just a farce in which protecting telecoms is dressed up as protecting us from terrorists conference cells. Now it begins to look like the bureaucrats of the Third Reich, trying to protect the Krupp family, the industrial giants, re-writing the laws of Germany for their benefit.
Olbermann closed by scoffing at the idea that telecom amnesty or revisions to FISA were necessary to help National Security:There is not a choice of protecting the telecoms from prosecution or protecting the people from terrorism, Sir. This is a choice of protecting the telecoms from prosecution or pretending to protect the people from terrorists. Sorry, Mr. Bush, the eavesdropping provisions of FISA have obviously had no impact on counter-terrorism, and there is no current or perceived terrorist threat the thwarting of which could hinge on an email or phone call that is going through Room 641 of AT&T in San Francisco.
The planet-cracking rant can be seen below:Greenwald cuts Olbermann no slack when his take on FISA changes when Obama decides to basically agree with Bush (at least until he decides not to):

Strong and righteous words indeed. But that was five whole months ago, when George Bush was urging enactment of a law with retroactive immunity and a lessening of FISA protections. Now that Barack Obama supports a law that does the same thing -- and now that Obama justifies that support by claiming that this bill is necessary to keep us Safe from the Terrorists -- everything has changed.

Last night, Olbermann invited Newsweek's Jonathan Alter onto his show to discuss Obama's support for the FISA and telecom amnesty bill (video of the segment is here). There wasn't a syllable uttered about "immunizing corporate criminals" or "textbook examples of Fascism" or the Third Reich. There wasn't a word of rational criticism of the bill either. Instead, the two media stars jointly hailed Obama's bravery and strength -- as evidenced by his "standing up to the left" in order to support this important centrist FISA compromise:

OLBERMANN: Asked by "Rolling Stone" publisher, Jann Wenner, about how Democrats have cowered in the wake of past Republican attacks, Senator Obama responding, quote, "Yeah, I don't do cowering." That's evident today in at least three issues . . .Senator Obama also refusing to cower even to the left on the subject of warrantless wiretapping. He's planning to vote for the FISA compromise legislation, putting him at odds with members of his own party . . . But first, it's time to bring in our own Jonathan Alter, also, of course, senior editor of "Newsweek" magazine.Good evening, Jon.


OLBERMANN: "Yeah, I don't do cowering." This is not just the man, but the campaign?ALTER: Yes. This is part of the message that is consistent across the last couple weeks and it comes down to one word -- strength. The United States is not going to elect a president that perceives to be as weak. You look weak if you're flip-flopping. You look weak if you're not taking actions that seem to be securing the United States against terrorists. And you look weak if you don't fight back against your political adversaries.

OLBERMANN: But this cuts, I mean, this terminology cuts in more than one direction here. Not cowering to Republicans is one thing in the Democratic, recent Democratic history, it's a thing that I think anybody who has a "D" near their name cheers, but not cowering to the left, not going along with the conventional, the new conventional thinking on the FISA bill, that's something altogether different, isn't it?

The dangers of the kind of politics Olbermann practices doesn't escape Greenwald as he notes that ejecting all honest and rational analysis can only lead to moral corruption and the acceptance of policies that are antithetical to what you believe actually works best for the people of the country, which is supposed to be the whole point of politics in the first place.

What Greenwald misses however is the fact that the whole Democratic Party is afflicted with the same condition that Oblermann has. But frankly, how can they not be? Barack Obama is a man of no particular knowledge or experience for the job for which he's running. He changes positions as frequently as Olbermann turns off girlfriends. The Left, which has invested him with near God-like powers, not to mention given him the Democratic nomination can either carry on the fantasy and follow him down whatever contradictory roads he chooses to follow next or jump ship on him. And you don't jump ship on Jesus.

Greenwald hasn't just written a column that deconstructs Keith Olbermann but deconstructs the whole Left side of the electorate as well. Sorry, Mr. Greenwald but Keith Olbermann is no aberration. Keith Olbermann is the Left.

But we on the Right have known that for quite some time.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Thursday Zen

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Magnificent Rebuttal To

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This short, simple homemade video is unpretentious yet very effective in rebutting's recent deeply dishonest video (below) which suggest that years from now John McCain's policies would be conscripting young men to fight in Iraq.

Of course McCain said that he would only leave troops in Iraq long-term if they were still there in the same way Americans are still in Japan. And, of course there is no draft so it is hard to see how little "Alex" would be in Iraq unless he chose to be there.

It is encouraging to see how powerful Daniel and Noah's mother's honest testament is when contrasted with Alex's mother's lies. So much of the Left's campaign is based on falsehoods every bit as egregious as those in the video. Why can't the Republicans be as effective in countering them as is Daniel and Noah's mom?

Oh, and has anyone thought of filing child abuse charges against Alex's mother? Shouldn't the cynical use of one's child to perpetuate a lie be a crime?

Paving The Road To The New Fascism: Pelosi Plots To Implement The Hush-Rush Law

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In anticipation of ushering in a new age of Liberal Fascism House Speaker Nancy Pelosi let it be known recently that she plans to re-institute the defunct Fairness Doctrine, or as it is known to those of us who value free speech, the Hush-Rush bill. Human Events columnist John Grizzi reports here on a recent encounter with Pelosi.

At a breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor yesterday, I asked Pelosi if Pence failed to get the required signatures on a discharge petition to get his anti-Fairness Doctrine bill out of committee, would she permit the Pence measure to get a floor vote this year.

“No,” the Speaker replied, without hesitation. She added that “the interest in my caucus is the reverse” and that New York Democratic Rep. “Louise Slaughter has been active behind this [revival of the Fairness Doctrine] for a while now.”

The reason for Pelosi's excitement has nothing to do with "fairness" and everything to do with squelching opinion critical of her and her party. Her goal: the removal of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Mark Levin, Glen Beck and the entire conservative talk radio industry from the airwaves.

Charles Sykes, a Senior Fellow of the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute has written a terrific history of the Fairness Doctine and review of what is at stake should Pelosi and her fellow brown-shirts get their way.
The original Fairness Doctrine was written in 1949, when the Federal Communications Commission issued a rule that required broadcasters to devote a certain amount of time to discussions of public affairs “of interest to the community served by the particular station.”

In 1949 there was (for most Americans) no TV, certainly no hundreds of cable and satellite TV stations and no real computers from which an Internet could spring with its multiplicity of sites of every variety. Returning to a broadcast rule that was created in an era in which most Americans could only get their news from newspapers, newsreel footage in movie theaters and radio broadcasts is akin to fighting today's wars with Revolutionary war muskets. What made sense in a long-along era does not make sense today.

Well, let me revise that: it does make sense if your real motives are less than pure as Pelosi's certainly aren't.
If the goal was to foster a more vigorous debate, the Fairness Doctrine failed miserably; if it was to chill the expression of inconvenient opinion, it was demonstrably successful. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, broadcasters, who were fearful of the time and the cost of compliance, simply opted to shut down controversial debate, avoiding whenever possible the discussion of issues that might trigger the regulatory nightmare. As a result, rarely did politicians have to worry about being pilloried or even criticized by radio hosts or even by on-air editorialists, whose weak and insipid commentary became monuments to the chilling effect of the Fairness Doctrine.

Under the reign of the Fairness Doctrine radio went silent on controversial issues and the AM band in particular remained a vast and neglected wasteland until 1987, when the rule was lifted.

Since 1987 radio has seen an explosion of opinion flourish, especially since the advent of the Rush Limbaugh Show as a growing national presence in 1988. One has to wonder how eager the Left would be to bring back the Fairness Doctrine if it had been say, Jim Hightower, Mario Cuomo, Al Franken or any one of the host of failed liberal talk show hosts who had spawned a whole new industry rather than Rush revolutionizing radio by making it the watering hole for conservative voices. Try as they might to succeed in it, talk radio is just not liberals' medium. You might think they wouldn't care so much, having a virtual monopoly in newspapers magazines, movies, network TV, etc. but then you would be underestimating their lack of respect for freedom of speech and their hunger for unfettered power.

The end of “fairness” :

In abolishing the Fairness Doctrine, the FCC acknowledged all of these logical and constitutional flaws. In August 1987, by a 4-0 vote, the FCC decided that:

[T]he intrusion by government into the content of programming occasioned by the enforcement of [the Fairness Doctrine] restricts the journalistic freedom of broadcasters . . . [and] actually inhibits the presentation of controversial issues of public importance to the detriment of the public and the degradation of the editorial prerogative of broadcast journalists.[x]

Commissioners took note of both recent court decisions and the flood of new technologies: “[T]he extraordinary technological advances that have been made in the electronic media since the 1969 Red Lion decision,” the FCC declared, “together with a consideration of fundamental capital First Amendment principles provides an ample basis for the Supreme Court to reconsider the premise or approach of its decision in Red Lion.”

Most important of all, the FCC declared that “the constitutional principles applicable to the printed press should be equally applicable to the electronic press.”

Twenty years later that principle remains unchallenged, except by politicians anxious to use their clout to bring back the speech police with their tape recorders and stop watches.

A reliable measure of the actual impact of the Doctrine was what happened when it was repealed: a veritable explosion of outlets—radio, television, cable, wireless, and satellite —and the spread of over-the-air debate and exchange of ideas that would have been unimaginable under the smothering influence of the Fairness Doctrine.

But what would happen if Democrats do, in fact, succeed in restoring the Fairness Doctrine?

By the left’s own account, the regulators will be quite busy: the liberal Center for American Progress estimates that more than 1,700 radio stations around the country have some form of talk show, with 50 million listeners a week. Each weekday, they figure, more than 2,824 hours of political talk (most of it conservative) are broadcast on those stations.[xi]

On an annual basis that comes to 146,848 hours of regulated speech, requiring mountains of tape machines and stop watches—and an almost unimaginable explosion in the number of speech policeman needed to maintain “fairness.”

Fascism operates by using the power of the state to remove all opposition to the state. There could hardly be a more compelling example of this than Congress bringing back the Fairness Doctrine. It is an action only a fascist could love. By returning to it as soon as she can, Nancy Pelosi, with an almost certainly expanded Democratic presence in Congress would make a possible President Barack Obama very happy very early in his reign.

Let the new era begin. And watch what you say.

Hot Air reports that the Obamessiah is against The Fairness Doctrine. I hope I don't seem cynical if I think he's against it the same way he was for public financing for the election.

Brian at Liberty Pundit also sees what the Dems are up to.

So does American Sentinel

Reason # 1,234,459 The US Should Get Out Of The UN

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The United Nations, providing yet another reason why it is an utterly execrable institution that serves the interests of undemocratic, retrograde forces has banned criticism of Islam during debates in the UN Human Rights Council.

GENEVA: Muslim countries have won a battle to prevent Islam from being criticised during debates by the UN Human Rights Council. Religions deserve special protection because any debate about faith is bound to be “very complex, very sensitive and very intense”, council President Doru-Romulus Costea said Wednesday.

Scholars: Only religious scholars should be allowed to discuss matters of faith, he told journalists in Geneva.

While Costea’s ban applies to all religions, it was prompted by Muslim countries complaining about references to Islam.

Costea issued his “presidential ruling” on Monday during the eighth meeting of the council’s 47 members, which do not include the United States. The ruling will not affect findings by the council’s experts, just its chamber debates.

Muslims have found a very effective method in which to prevent criticism: Since many Muslim countries are, to one degree or another guided by Sharia law, any criticism of such a nation's human rights violations allowed by their laws would be a criticism of Muslim based Sharia - therefore any criticism of their violations would be a criticism of Islam. Since Islam isn't just a religion but a legal system as well it is very easy to conflate Islam and Islamic nations .
The ban came after a heated session on Monday, when the representative of the Association for World Education (AWE), in a joint statement with the International Humanist and Ethical Union, denounced female genital mutilation, the penalty of stoning for adultery and child marriage as sanctioned by Islamic law. Egypt, Pakistan and Iran angrily protested, interrupting the AWE speaker, David Littman, with no less than 16 points of order, and succeeding in getting the Council’s proceedings suspended for over half an hour. In the course of this contentious discussion, the representatives from the Islamic countries made numerous revealing statements – statements that are well worth examining as Islamic nations and organizations call with increasing insistence for restrictions on free speech in the West.

Imran Ahmed Siddiqui, the representative from Pakistan, echoed the ever-echoing refrain of all Islamic apologists in the West, when he complained that Littman’s initiative on genital mutilation, stoning and child marriage amounted to an “out-of-context, selective discussion on the Sharia law.” He asked that Littman not be allowed to speak: “I would therefore request the president to exercise his judgment and authority and request the speaker not to touch issues which have already been debarred from discussion in this Council.” The representative from Slovenia then protested mildly against this attempt to silence Littman: “Any NGO representative,” he reminded Siddiqui, “has the right to make a statement within the merits of the agenda item under discussion. We see the statement being made pertaining within the purview of the agenda item and we don’t see grounds for any restricting censorship in that respect.”

The representative from Egypt thereupon responded: “I would humbly and kindly ask my colleague from Slovenia to reconsider.” He warned: “We will not take this lightly….This is not about NGOs and their participation in the Council. This is about the Sharia law.” Pakistan’s Siddiqui added: “I would like to state again that this is not the forum to discuss religious sensitivity.” Why not? Again sounding notes that are increasingly familiar in any discussion of the elements of Islam that jihadists and Sharia supremacists use to justify oppression, Siddiqui explained: “It will amount to spreading hatred against certain members of the Council. I mean, it has happened before also that selective discussions were raised in the Council to demonize a particular group.” He addressed Costea: “So we would again request you to please use your authority to bar any such discussion again, at the Council.”

After more discussion, a recess, and another warning from the representative from Egypt, Littman was finally allowed to proceed. After noting that “almost 90% of the female population in the north of Sudan undergo FGM which, in many cases, is practiced in its most extreme form known as infibulation,” Littman declared: “We believe that only a fatwa from Al-Azhar Grand Sheikh Sayyed Tantawi – replacing the ambiguous fatwas of 1949, 1951 and 1981 – will change this barbaric, criminal practice, which is now growing even in Europe.”

At this point Egypt interrupted, complaining that “this is an attempt to raise a bad traditional practice to Islam. Sheikh Al-Azhar [Sayyed Tantawi] is the president of the largest and the biggest and the oldest Islamic university in the world.” He exclaimed: “My point is that Islam will not be crucified in this Council. That’s why we are challenging this ruling” – that is, Costea’s decision to allow Littman to deliver his address.
Instead of standing up for human rights, which this being the Human Rights Council one would think he might Costea caved, thereby removing from discussion many of the horrors committed by Muslims against woman (as well as assorted other atrocities) from even being discussed.

It is time to leave the useless and noxious UN.

Cross-Posted at Because I'm Right

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Wednesday Zen

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The Dutch Are Mayans? Who Knew?

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According to this story many folks in the Netherlands think the world is done for in 2012 and wait until you read why:

Thousands of people in the Netherlands say they expect the world to end in 2012, and many say they are taking precautions to prepare for the apocalypse.

The Dutch-language de Volkskrant newspaper said it spoke to thousands of believers in the impending end of civilization, and while theories on the supposed catastrophe varied, most tied the 2012 date to the end of the Mayan calendar, Radio Netherlands reported Monday.

Funny, I always had the Dutch pegged as being Incan.


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Last night I had written a brilliant analysis of the current James Dobson/Obama dustup. In it I forensically took apart Obama's misunderstanding of both the Bible and the Constitution as it relates to the speech that is at the center of the controversy. When I'd finished, the Obamessiah's ignorance and confusion was exposed for all the world to see. The post was award-worthy. You would have laughed. You would have cried. You would have gotten up and sung the Star Spangled Banner and given money to your favorite charity. You would have been proud to be an American, dammit. But you'll never see it.

Unfortunately, earlier this morning while I was tweaking the masterpiece before its expected unveiling disappeared, never to be recaptured and displayed to the waiting masses. It is now lost somewhere in the cyber-ether, its greatness to be enjoyed only by the the great God of the Internet. *Sniff*

Sadly, this means that today's posts will be unusually skimpy. Tomorrow I shall return, somewhat chastened by my loss, but ready for battle nonetheless.

Excuse me now, while I continue the grieving process.

Now I Don't Have To Feel So Guilty.

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I admit it: I have felt guilty criticizing Barack Obama, as he is the greatest man who has ever lived and all. But now, thanks to John Stewart in the video above I feel that it is OK to speak ill of the Obamessiah. Did you hear the uncomfortable laugh after Stuart poke fun at the Lightbringer? John said that it was OK to laugh at him.

And so I will.


Cross Posted at The Patriot Room

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Tuesday Zen

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The Worst Political Ad In History

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This ad which is magnificently filmed opens with President Ronald Reagan, the beloved giant of conservative Republicanism and is sonorously narrated by highly respected and beloved conservative former Senator Fred Thompson. It takes aim at the hypocrisy and failures of the Democrats with forensic precision. It builds and builds adding fact on top of emotion until finally the true purpose of it all comes into view, what we've all been waiting for...Could it be?...Is it really?...Yes, Yes...There he is...Its......John McCain?? The New York Times' favorite Republican?? That John McCain?

A political ad in which Ronald Reagan is the opening act for John McCain is something like going to a Rolling Stones concert and finding that they're the opening act for American Idol's Sanjaya. Happily sitting through Reagan and Thompson and then being "rewarded" with McCain is the equivalent of the most beautiful woman in the world giving birth to Pauly Shore. Instead of being a payoff, McCain's appearance is a huge letdown.

Attempting to make some sort of comparison between Reagan, who achieved his stature by clinging to and heralding conservative principles and McCain, who has spent a large part of his career disdaining them, is ultimately futile and probably counterproductive. That's why this spot, so well produced, which appeals to both the heart and the head, ultimately fails miserably and dismally and why it is the worst political ad in history.

Very simply the problem is: John McCain, you're no Ronald Reagan.

Cross Posted at The Patriot Room

Just Call Me The Palin Boy

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Like many I didn't really know that much about Alaska governor Sarah Palin before the recent buzz about her as a possible running mate for John McCain but I think I may be falling in love just a little bit. And this latest may turn my feelings from mere infatuation into the real thing:

June 23, 2008, Anchorage, Alaska – Governor Sarah Palin today urged members of Congress to enact legislation that would allow oil and gas development in a small portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

In a letter addressed to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and key members of Congress, Governor Palin stressed the need to enact an energy policy that includes oil and gas production from domestic sources, since failure to enact a sound energy policy is having real-life consequences. The Governor reminded members of Congress that the footprint of development would be less than 2,000 acres. She also assured members that any development would be conducted in a responsible and environmentally safe manner.

The timing of this letter is interesting. With Palin's name being thrown around more and more as a possible McCain VP choice, coming out strongly for drilling in ANWR when McCain is still opposed (but may be moving in the pro-drilling direction) shows either a bit of guts or a possible coordination with the McCain campaign, helping McCain move closer to the pro-drilling side.
Stop The ACLU highlights her biography which certainly makes her sound like my kind of girl.
Palin, 44, would add youth to the GOP ticket. As governor she has shown a willingness to veto some of the state’s large capital projects, no small plus for fiscal conservatives. But it’s her personal biography, which excites social conservatives, and reformist background that might most appeal to McCain.

She’s stridently anti-abortion, and recently brought to term her fifth child — who she knew would have Down syndrome. A hunter, fisher and family woman with a rapid professional rise, Palin is a natural for Republican framing.

In 1982, Palin led her underdog high school basketball team to the state championship, earning the nickname “Sarah Barracuda.” Two years later she won the beauty pageant in her hometown of Wasilla, Alaska — and was also named “Miss Congeniality.” By her early thirties, she was the mayor of Wasilla.

In 2003, as ethics commissioner on the state’s Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, she risked her rising political star by resigning her position in protest of ethical misconduct within the state’s Republican leadership as well as then-Gov. Frank Murkowski’s acceptance of that impropriety. Though this briefly made her an outcast within the party, within a year several state Republican heavyweights were reprimanded for the conduct she’d decried.

Her reputation with the party thus redeemed, Palin defeated Murkowski in the 2006 Republican primary on the way to being elected governor.

As governor, she’s continued challenging the state’s powers that be, even winning tax increases on oil companies’ profits. Her approval rating has soared as high as 90 percent, making her one of America’s most popular governors.

“Palin is becoming a star in the conservative movement, a fiscal conservative in a state that is looking like a boondoggle for pork barrel spending,” said Kellyanne Conway, a Republican pollster who specializes in women’s politics.

“She’s young, vibrant, fresh and now, and a new mother of five. She should be in the top tier,” Conway continued. “If the Republican Party wants to wrestle itself free from the perception that it is royalist and not open to putting new talent on the bench, this would be the real opportunity.”

Palin's presence on the McCain ticket could prove very helpful in a number of ways. For conservatives she would certainly make voting for McCain more palatable. She would appeal to many of the former Hillary voters who remain pained by Hillary's loss. She would make the McCain ticket "historic" by giving the US its first female VP. She highlights the GOP as being a "big tent" party and stifles talk about the GOP as being a party of old White guys.

In the negative column is the fact that she is from Alaska, a state likely to go to McCain anyway. But a VP candidate's electoral pull is often overblown anyway, very rarely being directly responsible for winning any particular state and the good feeling she could infuse into McCain's run might boost his margin in close states, which wouldn't mean she'd win them for him, but make him more appealing and help him pull numbers where he needs them.

Also in the negatives is the fact that she has only been governor for about two years, a little more than Louisiana's Bobby Jindal, but not much. But considering the thinness of Obama's resume this is probably less of a problem than it would be in other elections.

All in all Sarah Palin has much to offer. I think I just might be a Palin Boy.

AllahPundit at Hot Air is also impressed

Rhymes With Right is also smitten

Will Smith - Just Another Ungrateful Obaminable Supporter

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Hat Tip to Geoffrey Dickens at Newsbusters

Actor and rabid Obama supporter Will Smith took a little trip abroad recently and apparently found himself embarrassed to be an American. Thankfully his shame was tempered by the fact that being American is OK again overseas again, thanks to...(well you already guessed, right?)... Barack Obama.

WILL SMITH: You know I just, I just came back from Moscow, Berlin, London and Paris and it's the first, I've been there quite a few times in the past five to 10 years. And it just hasn't been a good thing to be American. And this is the first time, since Barack has gotten the nomination, that it, it was a good thing.
Oh my, how can one man manage to say so many stupid things in such a short amount of time?
One by one, let us count the ways:
  • First: Both Germany and France have just recently moved away from more Obama-like large part because they were proving to be economically and socially disastrous. Britain's government, even after Tony Blair's departure remains strongly pro-American and derivatively pro-Bush. This doesn't necessarily speak to European peoples' love of GWB , of course (although France's Sarkozy and Germany's Merkel were well known to be favorably disposed to GWB as was (to a lesser extent) Britain's Brown prior to their elections). It also doesn't indicate the kind of antipathy Smith seems to believe exists. As for the Russians; their country is run by a kleptocracy. They are in no position to find anyone else's leadership embarrassing.
  • Second: Smith seems like he couldn't really disagree with the disdain he encountered for America on his little trip. Maybe he could have stood up for his country over these past eight years. I mean he seems to have done pretty well. Will, a member of an 'oppressed minority" has been having a pretty good run here in the Bush years. The pic below is his house. It is located in Los Angeles and cost a reputed $20 million. It probably didn't strain his wallet that much as, according to Forbes Magazine he made approximately $31 million in 2007.

But it isn't like Will doesn't know anybody else who has thrived in these embarrassing times. Fellow Obama supporter Oprah Winfrey has managed to do OK also, despite the oppression she has surely felt in these hate filled Bush years. Oprah bagged $260 million in 2007 which probably didn't stop her humiliation at being an American in the GWB years either. (It is believed she was too busy counting her cash to actually comment, however.) Oh yeah, that's her house below, by the way. It is in Montecito, CA, cost $55 million and has 14 bathrooms and 10 fireplaces.

We can all give thanks that these two Obama supporters, as well as the lovely Michelle Obama (who only made a humiliating $273,618 in 2006) and thousands of other previously America-hating folks, have Barack Obama who has come along just in the nick of time to give them a sense of pride in America again.

Cross Posted at The Patriot Room

Hot Air makes Mr. Smith's statment their Quote of the Day
Black and Right sees the hypocricy

Monday, June 23, 2008

Monday Zen

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Monkey Time

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And now some long anticipated news from the world of monkeys:

What goes on in an ape's mind might be more similar to our own way of thinking than previously realized, suggests a new study that found chimpanzees and orangutans plan for their futures.

Since this skill also entails forethought involving self-control and mental time travel, the findings point to a complex "inner mental world" possessed by apes, including gorillas, which were studied in trials before the official research began.

"When humans shut their eyes, a new vivid world takes hold," co-author Mathias Osvath told Discovery News.

"This mental world with its first-person perspective has been suggested to be unique to humans," added Osvath of Lunds University Cognitive Science in Sweden. "It is arguably impossible to plan like the apes do without having an inner world of some sort. (Our results) strongly imply a consciousness that many think is restricted to the human domain."
I will leave you alone now to make your own jokes about poiticians of every variety.

Mugabe Wins. Freedom Loses.

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Zimbabwean Presidential candidate Morgan Tsvangirai pulled out of the race yesterday following President Robert Mugabe's continuing reign of terror during that country's Presidential election.

Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai quit Zimbabwe's run-off election Sunday, saying violence had made a fair vote impossible, in a move that virtually hands victory to President Robert Mugabe.

"We will no longer participate in the violent illegitimate sham of an election process," Tsvangirai, 56, told reporters at his home, saying he could not ask supporters to cast ballots "when that vote would cost them their lives."

The opposition chief said Mugabe had "declared war by saying that the bullet has replaced the ballot", referring to the president's earlier threats to fight to keep the opposition out of power.

"We believe an election that reflects the will of the people is impossible," he said, as he appealed to the United Nations, African Union and regional body SADC to "intervene and stop the genocide".

Tsvangirai added he would announce a decision on his next moves on Wednesday -- leaving open the possibility, however slight, that he could change his mind.

The move brought a dramatic end to a presidential campaign that had been marred by allegations of brutal violence, with the opposition accusing government backers of terrorising its supporters.

The situation in Zimbabwe highlights the power of one deeply corrupt and brutal man, Mugabe to plunge an entire nation into bloody chaos and how utterly impotent the "international community" is to do anything to stop him.

Zimbabwe's crisis will move to the UN security council today as the international community contemplates fresh sanctions against Robert Mugabe's government.

Britain, the US and France will call on Russia and China to join the condemnation of Mugabe's regime, while the EU is expected to consider a raft of punitive measures aimed at Zanu-PF's leaders, their finances and their children's European educations. "If Mugabe thinks this finishes it, he's in for a big surprise. He has united the world against him," Mark Malloch-Brown, the Foreign Office minister for Africa, Asia and the UN told the Guardian. "Mugabe remains de facto president but he is not by any stretch of international law or political imagination, a legitimate leader."

I hate to differ with the esteemed UN official but Mugabe is as legitimate as they come. He gets his legitimacy from the barrel of a gun and there is no more convincing form of legitimacy than that.

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air
suggests a number of methods that might be effective in dealing with Mugabe but also notes it just ain't happening:

Update: One commenter asks whether this means we should “bomb bomb Harare” to intervene. There are intermediate steps that can take place before bombing. The UN and the SADC could take the following actions:
  • Charge Mugabe and his military commanders with crimes against humanity

  • Seize all assets held abroad by Mugabe and his advisers

  • List Zimbabwe’s military and militias as terrorist organizations

  • Refuse to offer diplomatic status to Zimbabwean officials traveling abroad

  • Close the borders to all shipments going into Zimbabwe — a complete embargo

The first would not do much, but the rest of these would cripple Mugabe. Unfortunately, no multilateral organization has even begun to consider these steps or anything close to them.

Don't hold your breath waiting.

UPDATE 6/23/06

Ed Morrissey updates with the news that Mugabe now wants Tsvangirai to stay in the race, thus providing his rancid regime with a veneer of credibility. Tsvangirai may find himself in the odd situation of being in greater danger by not running against Mugabe than he was running against him.

GWB Next On Rushmore?

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It is never easy to figure out how a still-serving President will be judged by history. Some President's who were unpopular during their time in office are treated better by history than they were by their contemporaries. Harry Truman comes to mind. Some unpopular Presidents get as dissed by history as by those unfortunate enough to have lived through their administrations. Jimmy Carter pops into my mind most quickly here.

Considering the loathing hoisted upon George W. Bush by the Left and the media and the general dissatisfaction that his own base often feels about it might make one think he'll wind up in the dog house with Carter. But maybe not. This column suggests that GWB may turn out to be misunderestimated after all:

George W Bush will be remembered for his responses to 9/11 in Afghanistan and Iraq, but since neither of those conflicts has yet ended in victory or defeat, it is far too early categorically to assume - as left-wingers, anti-war campaigners and almost all media commentators already do - that his historical reputation will be permanently down in the doldrums next to poor old Warren Harding's.

I suspect that historians of the future will instead see Bush's decision to insist upon a "surge" of reinforcements being sent into Iraq, combined with a complete change of anti-insurgency tactics as configured by General Petraeus, as the moment when the conflict was turned around there, in the West's favour.

No one - least of all Bush himself - denies that mistakes were made in the early days after the (unexpectedly early) fall of Baghdad, and historians will quite rightly examine them. But once the decades have put the stirring events of those years into their proper historical context, four great facts will emerge that will place Bush in a far better light than he currently enjoys.

The overthrow and execution of a foul tyrant, Saddam Hussein; the liberation of the Afghan people from the Taliban; the smashing of the terrorist networks of al-Qa'eda in that country and elsewhere and, finally, the protection of the American people from any further atrocities on US soil since 9/11, is a legacy of which to be proud.
Success works wonders in burying failure. That holds true for no President more than Abraham Lincoln. The first years of the Civil War were marked by numerous military disasters, incompetent Generals, assaults on civil liberties etc. The ultimate success of Lincoln's actions however have left all the not inconsiderable catastrophes as not much more than footnotes in the minds of people today.

Bush will probably be helped, too by the utter derangement of many of his political adversaries.
History will also shine an unforgiving light on those ludicrous conspiracy theories that claim that the Iraq War was fought for any other reason than to implement the 14UN resolutions that Saddam that had been flouting for 13 years.

The CIA and MI6 believed, like almost every other intelligence agency in the world, that Saddam had WMD, and the "Harmony" documents seized and translated since the fall of his regime make it abundantly clear that he was also supporting almost every anti-Western terrorist organisation imaginable.

Historians will appreciate how any War Against Terror that allowed Saddam to remain in place would have been an absurd travesty.

When the rise of al-Qa'eda is considered by historians like Philip Bobbitt and William Shawcross, it will be President Clinton's repeated refusal to act effectively in the 1990s, rather than President Bush's tough response after 9/11, that will be held up as culpable.
If the Surge continues to succeed in the coming months as it has been doing recently and Iraq turns out to be a stable democracy and therefore a stabilizing force in a very unstable part of the world, all the Bush Derangement Syndrome the Moonbats care to indulge in might not stop Bush from ending up with a lot more respect than he is getting today.

Barking Moonbat Early Warning System is intrigued by the possibility as well

A Newt One is dusting off Rushmore to make room.

Sister Toldja makes a number of good points, as well

Sublime Bloviations also notes

Brian at Liberty Pundit does, as well