Monday, April 20, 2015

Update on my aneyrysm

No news post today. I was at rehab, at a lunch, and felt poorly this afternoon. Have to be up at 5 for my three month check up at the VA.

I did talk to my primary care doc. She said that looking at the chart, my aneurysm was first noted in May of 2013. It was 4.3 cm. (No one told me.) Last July is was 4.5 cm. She only learned about it when the eye clinic contacted her last month to see if it was okay to do my second cataract surgery. She said they won't operate unless and until it gets to 5.5 cm. So I guess I'll ignore it. I didn't get to know about it for two years, so I guess it's okay...~Bob

Sunday, April 19, 2015

The weekend's political news and conservative opinion


Happy Patriots Day--April 19. ~Bob

The Old Jarhead Blog--thanks for following!
I try to make this blog your one-stop-shop for political news and conservative opinion. Founded in October, 2008, it gets 5k to 7k page views a week, most from the US, but hundreds from many countries worldwide. Feel free to post or forward to friends who need to be better informed. The news posts are created from several news feeds, from US and international websites, from twitter when I have spare time to follow it, and by many readers who send me items for inclusion, which I would have often have missed or skipped. We owe them thanks and appreciation. I try to include foreign sources and info you won’t get in the MSM, but I often use links to pieces in the Washington Post, New York Times, Politico, Reuters and other left-of-center sources. No one is required to read the blog, or any of the links. Trust me, no one reads everything posted, but scanning the headlines will keep you informed, and you can click on stories you want to know more about. I post articles because I think they are of interest and will stimulate thought and discussion. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree (or disagree) with every—or any—opinion in the posted article, or that I was able to verify the information presented, which is the responsibility of the author. I try not to post things that are false, too far a stretch, or viciously inflammatory, regardless of the view point. I also try to avoid items that will turn off thoughtful centrists and leftists or low-information independents, including “red meat” pieces with intemperate language or wild speculation, conspiracy theories with no supporting facts and silly distractions like the so-called “birther” issue (which I correctly predicted years ago was going nowhere, and wasted time and energy), but I don’t always succeed. I use maybe 50% of the conservative pieces sent me, probably less than 5% of the liberal opinion sent, usually to illustrate their views. Readers who don’t like that are welcome to start their own blogs. Readers who send formatted pieces (title, link, and a fair-use excerpt of no more than three sentences unless the piece is very short, than fewer) to tartanmarine(at) have a higher chance of my using them than people who just send a link. A piece without a link has a much lower chance of being used—it depends on how interesting it is and how much time I have right then to search for it, and my time is limited right now due to managing the lung transplant I received on December 23, 2013, which has developed complications. I understand if you don’t have the time to format or even to find a link—please understand I don't either. I often include thoughtful comments from contributors. (Tell me if you want your full name used.) There are no ads on my blog, no fees and I receive no income from it. Now that I've retired, that might need to change, though I hate the ads on most blogs. For now, that’s how it is. I do promote my books, with the royalties going to charity. As always on the Net, as in the legacy media, you must read these posts critically and with skepticism.

General News and Comment

Hillary Clinton’s Newest Endorsement Just Released a Brand New Video
Excerpt: Hillary Clinton is actively courting women voters in her campaign for president, but her newest endorsement may still come as a surprise. The Bunnies at Dennis Hof’s Moonlite Bunny Ranch in Carson City, Nevada, have publicly announced their support for the former First Lady.

Campaign staff DROVE 'ordinary' Iowans to Hillary's first campaign stop - including health care 'lobbyist in training' who was an Obama campaign intern and Biden chauffeur
Excerpt: Hillary Clinton's astroturf candidacy is in full swing in Iowa. Her Tuesday morning visit to a coffee shop in LeClaire, Iowa was staged from beginning to end, according to Austin Bird, one of the men pictured sitting at the table with Mrs. Clinton.

Worth Reading: Frank Capra’s America and Ours. By John Marini
Excerpt: Filmmaker Frank Capra was not an American by birth or blood. Consequently he did not understand America, as many Americans do today, in terms of personal categories of identity such as race, ethnicity, gender, or sexuality. He understood America in terms of its political principles—the moral principles of America that can be shared by all who understand them and are willing to live up to them. This was Abraham Lincoln’s understanding as well. 

Libertarians Outnumber Both Liberals and Conservatives. By John C. Goodman
Excerpt: Gallup, which has been polling on the issue for quite some time, finds that 38 percent of the public identifies as “conservative” and 24 percent as “liberal” in the latest
Gallup doesn’t ask people if they are libertarian, but fortunately other polls have asked that question in various ways. In 2006 the Cato Institute commissioned Zogby International to ask 596 voters this question: “Would you describe yourself as fiscally conservative and socially liberal?” Fully 59 percent of the respondents said “yes.”

Karma: Hunter Ian Gibson Trampled To Death By Elephant He Was Tracking To Kill For Ivory

Comments on an old blog post about phony vets
We have these guys here in UK too. On or near November 11th every year we have Remembrance Sunday. Lots of parades at war memorials up and down the country. The phonies turn up with a row of Ebay medals or a uniform that any former soldier can spot as wrong a mile away. And they've always been in the SAS, or the Parachute Regiment. It's called "Walting " here - short for Walter Mitty. Lots of them collect money allegedly for service charities, but they keep it themselves. They get prosecuted if found, but the punishment for wearing medals you're not entitled to is a laughably small fine. The embarrassment in the press and the abuse from real soldiers is the true punishment. --Anon. Former High School Principal in our town had his pic on the wall, in uniform. "Where'd you serve?" Viet Nam! "What part?" I don't remember.... John.

American Veteran Michelle Manhart Picks Up US Flag from Desecration at Georgia University – Gets Arrested
Excerpt: In a valiant display of patriotism, Michelle Manhart picked up an American flag that was being trampled on by a bunch of young university punks. Keep in mind that this had been going on for three days at Valdosta State University. When Michelle stood up and did what the campus and no one else was willing to do, she resisted turning the flag over to police and stood her ground, guarding the flag until she was overpowered by police and arrested.

Woman On Welfare Wants Taxpayers To Pay For $15,000 Wedding, Being A Bride Is A ‘Basic Human Right’
Excerpt: Anna Broom has been on welfare since she was 19-years-old since she was deemed too overweight to work. In total, she has collected over $149,000 in benefits but says that simply isn’t enough as she now wants taxpayers to pay for a dream wedding costing $15,000. Broom claims that being a bride is a “basic human right” and that she is entitled to a “‘traditional English wedding and party in a castle.” The Daily Mail reports that Broom, from Kent in Southeast England, is requesting that her “dream wedding” be paid for as a “basic human right.”

Walker: Hillary Is 'Third Term Of Barack Obama'
Excerpt: Walker declared, “there are some sharp contrasts out there, not just between this president, but Hillary Clinton who…is really an extension of the third term of Barack Obama. Americans need to realize that. This isn’t the third term of Bill Clinton, this is the third term of Barack Obama.”

New VA scandals call into question agency's ability to clean house
Excerpt: Ignored claims, manipulated records, cost overruns and even one facility infested with insects and rodents are among the latest issues uncovered by a blistering VA Inspector General’s report. The auditor's probe found that more than 31,000 inquiries placed by veterans to the Philadelphia Regional VA office call center went ignored for more than 312 days, even though they were supposed to be answered in five. Perhaps even worse, claim dates were manipulated to hide delays, $2.2 million in improper payments were made because of duplicate records, 22,000 pieces of returned mail went ignored and some 16,600 documents involving patient records and dating back to 2011 were never scanned into the system.

Gun News

Grassley to Holder: Why Is The VA Putting So Many Veterans on Your Federal Gun Ban List?
Excerpt: Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) has sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder expressing deep concerns over Veterans Affairs evaluations classifying veterans as “mentally defective” and banning them in the federal background check system from purchasing or owning a firearm. According to Grassley’s office, the VA “reports individuals to the gun ban list if an individual merely needs financial assistance managing VA benefits,” keeping them from exercising their Second Amendment rights. (Bolding is mine)

Police identify alleged burglar shot by homeowner in Orlando apartment
Excerpt: A quiet neighborhood was rocked early Wednesday when a homeowner shot a man who broke into his home, police said.

"You're Greener than Gore" News

'Man-made disaster': Critics say California drought caused by misguided environment policies. By Malia Zimmerman
Excerpt: The blistering drought that has Californians timing their showers, driving dirty cars and staring at brown lawns and empty swimming pools is a “man-made disaster,” according to critics, who say the Golden State’s misguided environmental policies allow much-needed freshwater to flow straight into the Pacific. In an average year, California gets enough snow and rain to put 200 million acres under a foot of water, but environmental opposition to dams over the last several decades has allowed the majority of the freshwater to flow into the ocean, even as the state’s population exploded to nearly 40 million people. The current drought has left farms parched and residents under strict water consumption orders, but some say it didn't have to be that way. (I see more of this line of commentary coming out the last couple of weeks. This one quotes more numbers and details than others have. The writer seems to have done a better job in researching than most, and I like to see proper investigation and analysis of things. Regardless of how some will point to all kinds of other aspects of water use in CA, the deep wells that have dropped the water table so badly that the land itself has moved, etc, I think the point that enormous amounts of fresh water have been flowing into the Pacific day in and day out for all these years, and that there haven't been any serious moves to store more water, is what's important. The politicians sitting around up in the capital for all these decades have been utterly malfeasant in doing pretty much nothing for the future of the state. But now the chickens are all coming home to roost, and even if they start moving in the right direction in Sacramento, it will still take many years to get things changed and reservoirs built, not to mention all the millions of dollars the state doesn't have. So it's not going to go anywhere but downhill for some time to come. And the plants that produce the grapes, the lettuce, the strawberries, the almonds, etc, that feed people and provide jobs and tax revenue can't cut back on their showers. There are going to be some real debates about how to allocate water around the state. --Del)

Religion of Peace News

When did America forget that it’s America? By Natan Sharansky 
Excerpt: Natan Sharansky, a human rights activist and former political prisoner in the Soviet Union, is chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel. On a number of occasions during the negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program, the Israeli government has appealed to the United States and its allies to demand a change in Tehran’s aggressive behavior. If Iran wishes to be treated as a normal state, Israel has said, then it should start acting like one. Unfortunately, these appeals have been summarily dismissed. The Obama apparently believes that only after a nuclear agreement is signed can the free world expect Iran to stop its attempts at regional domination, improve its human rights record and, in general, behave like the civilized state it hopes the world will recognize it to be.

US alienation leading to Israeli-Chinese renaissance
Excerpt: Relationship between Jerusalem and Beijing is blooming due to China’s growing self-confidence, its understanding that battle against Israel is no longer a uniting factor in the Muslim world, and its desire to maintain close ties with a regional power whose crisis with Washington is deepening. (this is really frightening, given the book I'm reading now: The Hundred-Year Marathon: China's Secret Strategy to Replace America as the Global Superpower by Michael Pillsbury, ~Bob)

Rubio: Nuclear Iran is 'Unacceptable'
Excerpt: Responding to a question from the audience, Rubio explained how the U.S. and international sanctions regime had been working on the Islamic republic, devastating Iran's economy to the point that Tehran seemed ready to negotiate. But, the senator said, there was a catch. "They knew as soon as they sat time for the first time that this president wanted this deal worse than they did," Rubio said.

UN: The genocide of 1.5 million Armenians was not genocide
Excerpt: United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said that the slaughter of 1.5 million Armenians during World War I was not genocide, but rather “atrocity crimes.” The categorization was in response to a statement made earlier by the Pope, who called it “the first genocide of the 20th century.” April 24, 2015, marks the 100th anniversary of the start of the Armenian genocide. On that date, the Turkey lead Ottoman Empire rounded up 250 Armenian leaders and intellectuals whom they accused of supporting the Russian enemy in World War I. The Ottomans then executed Armenian men of military age and sent the elderly, women and children on death marches into the Syrian desert. Scholars estimate that 1-1.5 million Armenians died. (They were Christians, so can't offend the Muslims who killed them...~Bob)

Putin blasts treatment of Mideast Christians. 'Sad that the international community now cannot defend people who need protection'
Excerpt: Russian President Vladimir Putin said the situation in the Middle East for Christians is terrible and the international community is not taking enough steps to protect them. “As to the Middle East and Christians, the situation is terrible. We have spoken about it many times and we believe that the international community is not doing enough to protect the Christian population of the Middle East,” Putin told reporters. (2 thoughts come to mind reading this: 1--How can a world leader be so obviously right on so many issues and be considered an "enemy" of the West? (Christianity used to be considered part of Western culture)? 2--Note how WND, which used to side with the Neocons, is now willing to publish something like this. Let's hope WND and other outlets keep reminding us of the terrible plight of the Christians in the ME so that eventually, we stop supporting ISIS (by supporting the Saudis who support them) and eventually wake up and realize that boots on the ground are necessary in the fight against them. The MAIN boots on the ground now are Iranian ones. Iran's Shiite teaching rejects the killing of non-Muslims. The Wahhabi Sunni Saudis can't wait to rid the world of Christianity, one sliced throat at a time. We need to realize we are on the wrong side. Again. As usual. --Don Hank)

Hoax fools wannabe jihadis. By Grant Taylor
Excerpt: Security agencies are now reviewing material gathered by the anonymous impostor who set up a fake Twitter account pretending to be Thorne this month. Within days more than 160 people had followed the account and many discussed openly with the impostor the idea of bombing Jewish organisations based in Sydney, as well as threats to carry out Charlie Hebdo-style attacks on cartoonists Larry Pickering and Bill Leak.

Former jihadist escapes from the Islamic state: We had to kill everyone, without pity
Excerpt: They said: ‘You must kill children without compassion, you must kill women, Jews, infidels and Shiites'. This is the testimony of a young Tajik, recruited in Moscow by the militia of the Islamic State (IS) to fight in Syria and who managed to escape.

Dragged from the dead and dying, bloodied boy emerges alive from hellish aftermath of suicide bombing - the first in Afghanistan by ISIS
Excerpt: He was near a bank in Jalalabad early Saturday morning when the attacker detonated an explosive-laden motorcycle, killing 35 people and injuring another 125. The group, which included military personnel as well as civilians, were waiting to receive their monthly salaries as crowds bustled around them when the bomb exploded in the busy commercial district.

Iranian opposition activist: “Obama is the son of a Shiite father… Some people call him the Iranian lobby in America.”
Excerpt: This claim has been going around for years. One reason why it never dies is because Obama never does anything to disconfirm it. “Commentators on Arab TV: Obama Supports Iran Because His Father Was a Shiite,” MEMRI,...

Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at) Hall’s eleven books are listed here:

Friday, April 17, 2015

More Political news and opinion


I have an aneurysm?
I received a letter today (Friday) from my Primary Care Doc at the VA. She said my CT scan of my lungs in July revealed I have a 4.5 CM aneurysm, and she is going to schedule another CT scan his summer to re-evaluate this. Unfortunately, I got the mail to late too call her. I am surprised to learn of this nine months later, as I have always understood that aneurysms are life threatening, and 4.5 CM (1.77 inches) seems pretty large. Guess I'll find out Monday what the deal is. ~Bob

From a blog reader
26th Marines Association 2015 Reunion. August 21, 22 and 23, 2015. Denver Colorado
26'ers from all times, Regiment, MAU and MEU. All battalions, Iwo to current, and supporting units. See for details or contact. Sonny Hollub 512-312-4168 or (My regiment in Vietnam, so I was happy to include this at his request. ~Bob)

General News and Comment

Morning Plum: Hillary evolves on issues important to the left. By Greg Sargent
Excerpt: It is probably too late for any Democrat to mount a credible primary challenge to Hillary Clinton, who appears to have sewn up much of the sort of the hidden elite support and backing from party actors that tends to influence voters’ choice of a nominee. Yet on some issues, at least, Clinton is acting as if she has a lot of work to do in terms of securing support from liberal Democrats who might be tempted to give someone else a second look. This is not lost on former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, who has now taken a subtle shot at Clinton for shifting on issues important to rank and file Dems.

Worth Reading: She rides by van: The Hillary Clinton launch. By Charles Krauthammer
Excerpt: See Hillary ride in a van! Watch her meet everyday Americans! Witness her ordering! Which she did wearing shades, as did her chief aide Huma Abedin, yielding security-camera pictures that made them look (to borrow from Karl Rove) like fugitives on the lam, wanted in seven states for a failed foreign policy. There’s something surreal about Hillary Clinton’s Marie Antoinette tour, sampling cake and commoners.

Video: Former FOIA Chief: 'No Doubt’ Hillary Knew Server Would Stop Oversight

Foreign money will fuel a shameless Clinton's career
Excerpt: On Thursday, citizens of the Internet had a good chuckle over Hillary Clinton's meeting with local Democratic officials in Council Bluffs, Iowa. The video footage from after the meeting revealed the rather flagrant parking of her campaign van in a handicapped parking space, despite the availability of a regular spot immediately in front of it. That particular misstep can probably be laid at the feet of the Secret Service agent who chauffeurs Clinton. Not so the many times in Clinton's career in public life where she has similarly displayed the attitude that rules are for little people, and not herself or her family.

Clinton Campaign Chaos. By Matthew Vadum 
Excerpt: Charles Krauthammer mocked Mrs. Clinton and her ongoing tour of flyover country. She wants to get the big money out of politics, he said, but she is aiming to generate an unprecedented campaign war chest of $2.5 billion. “She has been taking in money ever since she took the silverware from the White House when they left in 2001,” Krauthammer said. “I mean, it really is a stretch. I just find this rather amusing. This is her Marie Antoinette cake tour.” “The problem with her is the inauthenticity has reached a point where nothing you see is believable,” the conservative columnist said. “Even if she were sincere about anything you wouldn’t be able to tell it.”

Hillary Clinton’s astroturfed grandparents
Excerpt: But now Hillary Clinton is branching out into Joe Biden country. Back in 1988, Joe Biden was forced to end his presidential bid when it was discovered that the tales he told of his hardscrabble coal-mining father were actually borrowed from stump speeches by British socialist Neil Kinnock and Biden’s father was a middle class professional.

A 'Postcard' From Twentynine Palms, California - With Heart (as in Purple) - About a Great Marine. By Andy Weddington
Excerpt: Big Mac Dube was a fine man, Marine, and American. He was a patriot. He was not only a proud citizen of his community but a selfless servant thereof. He was the essence of Smith's opening quote.

When veterans return, their children also deal with the invisible wounds of war. By Emily Wax-Thibodeaux
Excerpt: Twice a day, Koen Hughes’s medicine alarm beeps and sputters. He yells out across the kitchen to his father, retired Army Staff Sgt. Jonah Hughes, an Iraq war veteran, who suffers from such a severe brain injury that it’s hard for him to remember things like whether he showered, and sometimes how to shower. Koen is always there, reminding him to take his anti-seizure pills, nervously double-checking his medicine box and squinting as he monitors his father’s behavior. Koen is 10.

The Establishment and the Tea Party Face Off in Illinois. By John Fund
Excerpt: LaHood is about as establishment a choice as one could imagine. He is the son of Representative Ray LaHood, the very moderate Republican who represented about half of the current district in Congress until 2009. He then left office to become President Obama’s Transportation Secretary, where he promoted pork-barrel spending and dubious high-speed-rail projects. His son’s supporters say his politics are distinct from those of his father, but clearly the LaHood name will be a mixed blessing in a primary. On the one hand, it brings strong name identification for Darin LaHood. But on the other, it leaves many of the district’s conservatives looking for a fresh, non–status quo alternative.

Important: Whatever happened to Obama’s pivot to Asia? By Fareed Zakaria 
Excerpt: The Obama administration’s foreign policy energies are fully engaged in the Middle East — negotiating the Iran deal, sending Special Operations forces into Iraq, supporting Saudi airstrikes in Yemen, working with the Syrian rebels. Whatever happened to the pivot to Asia? (I highly recommend The Hundred-Year Marathon: China's Secret Strategy to Replace America as the Global Superpower by Michael Pillsbury,
which I am reading now. ~Bob)

Interesting: Ballistic Bombast. By Michael Fabey
Excerpt: China may be able to take out an American aircraft carrier with its feared DF-21 antiship ballistic missile (ASBM) without even taking a shot. For years the U.S. Navy has been warning of the potential of the DF-21 to strike a carrier as part of the justification for updating the systems and networks of shielding that protect the country’s most visible – and some say most vulnerable – military icons. The Navy brass did a good job making its case. Maybe too good. Now some powerful people in DC are looking to reduce the fleet by a carrier or two in the belief that the DF-21 will make it too dangerous for the ships even to get close to Chinese territorial waters. 

IRS Files Tax Lien Against MSNBC Host. By Leah Barkoukis
Excerpt: Earlier this month the IRS placed a $70,000 tax lien against MSNBC host Melissa Harris Perry, who is perhaps best known for wearing tampon earrings and mocking Mitt Romney’s black grandchild. The lien seems to have come as a surprise to Harris-Perry, who once tweeted that she would pay her taxes “with a smile.” (Must be a mistake--the IRS usually goes after conservatives. ~Bob)

Excerpt: Phoenix has been ruled by liberal Democrats for many years. The ethnically diverse culture of downtown Phoenix is an island smack dab in the center of a largely conservative state. So, back in 2008 Phoenix decided to go into business and buy themselves a Sheraton Hotel. They invested more than half a billion dollars in the place. Then they staffed it with their favorite unions and kept workers happy with juicy pay and benefits packages and bumped their salaries up each year. Not surprisingly, the Phoenix owned Sheraton is bleeding much so that the city is nearly bankrupt and can't finance municipal needs. They've hiked parking rates (which drove downtown shoppers to the suburbs), they implemented a tax on food, and you need a bankroll to pay for the various city fees they assess to even talk to a municipal bureaucrat. 

Free Speech Losing to Campus Thought Police
Excerpt: Attention parents of college students across America. Apparently, your children may not be safe. This isn't a warning about real physical dangers on campus, from assault to random shootings. Rather, some advocacy groups say college students are at risk – maybe you'd better sit down for this – of being exposed to ideas and opinions they may not like. It's getting so bad that this week, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) New York chapter demanded that Brooklyn College "take measures to ensure the safety of Muslim and Arab-American students" because of an upcoming speech by a harsh critic of Islam.

Gun News

Cops: Man shot intruder during Orlando apartment burglary
Excerpt: "During the victim and suspect encounter, the victim shot the suspect multiple times," Orlando Police Lt. Darnell Hill said.

One dead after North Phoenix home invasion
Excerpt: During the home invasion, two men in their 20's were shot. Both of the men were transported to the hospital where one of them died from their injuries.

Deputies: Moon Lake man shoots home intruder
Excerpt: An intruder who broke into a New Port Richey home was shot multiple times during a confrontation with a resident early Thursday, authorities said.

Undocumented Democrat News

Good video: KISS' Gene Simmons: Immigrants to America Should 'Learn Goddamned English'

"You're Greener than Gore" News

Study: EPA Global Warming Rule To Kill Nearly 300,000 Jobs. By Michael Bastasch
Excerpt: The EPA’s carbon dioxide regulation could end up destroying nearly four times as many jobs as the agency said it would by 2030. A report by the American Action Forum found that job losses from EPA’s carbon rule could be as high as 296,000. AAF’s report found the EPA’s rule to fight global warming endangers the viability of more than 90 power plants across the country that produce 50 gigawatts of power. These plant closures, the EPA says, will put 80,000 people out of work by 2030. But once economy-wide impacts are taken into account, some 296,000 jobs could be lost during that time, notes AAF.

Excerpt: Jeff Leeds says installing SolarCity’s panels on the roof of his home in the Northern California city of El Granada was the sorriest day of his life. Agreeing to the company’s 20-year lease was like partnering with the devil, he claims. He says he has endured skyrocketing electric bills, installation of an inferior system and contract violations because SolarCity refuses to clean the panels or to provide a payment for his system’s poor performance. The latest surprise: a notice from his bank telling him that SolarCity had placed a lien on his home, and that his equity line of credit application could not proceed until the lien was removed.

Religion of Peace News

Important: The Obama ‘Framework’ for Israel’s Doom. By Moshe Phillips and Benyamin Korn 
Excerpt: So now it turns out that Israel’s security, perhaps its very existence, will be jeopardized in order to give Barack Obama some post-presidential bragging points. It was recently revealed that the President intends to publicly endorse specific borders and other terms for a Palestinian state, which he hopes will go down in history as the “Obama Framework.” But it would be more truthful to call it what it is — the Palestinian Framework. (As long as Obama seeks to make Israel repent for the evils of Western colonialism by agreeing to suicide borders with the so-called Palestinians, he should issue an executive order so that the return CA, NV, AZ, NM, CO and WY to Mexico. After all, these areas were taken in a war of conquest, while Israel's accretion of territory was due to a war of defense. Now, let's talk about Russia in Ukraine, China in Tibet, Spain in Catalonia and Granada, England and Scotland, etc. Cordially, --Larry Greenberg.)

The Necessity of the Fighting Jew on Campus. By Elliott Hamilton 
Excerpt: The problem, of course, remains that most Jews do not fully comprehend the links between our contemporary victories and those of antiquity. Whenever a Jew hears the word “Zionism,” they are often reminded of a vicious Jew-hating campaign of the collectivists, the Islamist extremists, and the neo-Nazis to ostracize its champions. This remains especially true on college campuses, when Students for Justice in Palestine and Jewish Voice for Peace demonize the term completely out of historical context to uphold their deplorable, false narrative. Jewish or pro-Israel students do not repeat the true Zionist story, mostly out of fear of campus censorship initiated by opinionated professors and catalyzed by their intolerant peers.

PA President Abbas Honors Fatah Terrorists in Official Ceremony
Excerpt: Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas awarded medals to the first male and female jailed Fatah members and the group's first "martyred" terrorist, the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) reports. The awards came in advance of today's "Palestinian Prisoners Day." Fatima Bernawi was the first woman in Fatah jailed for terrorist activity, an article posted Thursday on Fatah's Egyptian website said.

Worth Reading: Islamic Jihad Comes to Campus. By David Horowitz 
Excerpt: According to the FBI, three-fifths of all religious hate crimes in America are now committed against Jews, while a recent Pew poll revealed that 54 percent of Jewish students have either been the subject of an anti-Semitic attack or witnessed one. The frequency of these attacks among college-aged students, moreover, is five times that of any other age group. The reason for this is obvious: Across the United States student groups associated with the Muslim Brotherhood, specifically Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and the Muslim Students Association, are engaged in a vitriolic campaign against Israel and those students who support its right to exist. These organizations promote the propaganda of the terrorist organization Hamas, and call for the destruction of the Jewish state.

Holocaust history and the lost generation
Excerpt: According to one Gallup poll conducted in the United States, less than half of those polled knew how many Jews were killed in the Holocaust, while only 44 percent could identify Auschwitz, Dachau, and Treblinka as death camps. In another poll, 70 percent of those surveyed said they knew what the Holocaust was—but that means 30 percent didn’t. Holocaust knowledge in all areas was higher among older people, and lower among younger people. According to a poll in the United Kingdom, 28 percent of respondents ages 18-29 said they didn’t know if the Holocaust happened. Then there was the poll commissioned by the University of Haifa that said 40.5 percent of Israeli Arabs—40.5 percent!—don’t believe the Holocaust ever occurred. (George Santayana's famous statement, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it," (The Life of Reason, Volume 1, 1905) should not be taken literally. However the shocking lack of historical knowledge among the educated young portends a blindness to unpleasant things in the world and their unpreparedness to face moral challenges. The interviews shown here are in Toronto, but I would bet that 90% of college educated people born after 1975 would be in this category. Cordially, Larry Greenberg)

Excerpt: Hezbollah Brigades, a US-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization, is deploying forces to the western provincial capital of Ramadi to fight off an Islamic State offensive. The Iranian-backed Shiite militia continues to promote past attacks against US forces on its official website. Hezbollah Brigades has begun to release videos of its fighters operating in the western city, which has been contested for the past year. The Islamic State stepped up its offensive in Ramadi earlier this week. 

Iran Is Winning the War for Dominance of the Middle East. Tehran and Riyadh are engaged in a naked struggle for power in the region -- individual rights and good governance be damned. By Thanassis Cambanis
Excerpt: This drumbeat of headlines, however, should not distract us from the larger meaning of events in the Middle East. We are witnessing a struggle for regional dominance between two loose and shifting coalitions — one roughly grouped around Saudi Arabia and one around Iran. Despite the sectarian hue of the coalitions, Sunni-Shiite enmity is not the best explanation for today’s regional war. This is a naked struggle for power: Neither of these coalitions has fixed membership or a monolithic ideology, and neither has any commitment whatsoever to the bedrock issues that would promote good governance in the region. (an interesting analysis of what is going on in the Middle East. --Del)

Excerpt: In a newly released video showing the Islamic State’s assault on the Baiji oil refinery complex, one of the scenes shows two children using what appears to be a US-made M198 howitzer. The children fired the howitzer towards Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) positions in the complex. In the past, the group has highlighted the use of children as executioners, or as helpers in executions, many times.

Allah the Merciful: Police: Muslims threw Christians overboard during Med voyage
Excerpt: Italy's migration crisis took on a deadly new twist Thursday as police in Sicily reported that Muslim migrants had thrown 12 Christians overboard during a recent crossing from Libya, and an aid group said another 41 were feared drowned in a separate incident. Palermo police said they had detained 15 people suspected in the high seas assault, which they learned of while interviewing tearful survivors from Nigeria and Ghana who had arrived in Palermo Wednesday morning after being rescued at sea by the ship Ellensborg. The 15 were accused of multiple homicide aggravated by religious hatred, police said in a statement.

Iraqi officials: Top Saddam Hussein aide may have been killed in fighting
Excerpt: Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri was reportedly killed during fighting against Sunni insurgent forces, senior Iraqi officials claimed Friday, in a potential blow to factions opposing the government in Baghdad. But previous reports over the years about Douri’s death have proven wrong. 

An Invasion of Refugees. By Daniel Greenfield 
Excerpt: And now, Spartanburg faces a dangerous invasion with only a handful of patriots inspired by the urge of freedom to stand against it. The invasion is a silent and secret one. The soldiers come as refugees funneled through ratlines run by liberal churches and other pseudo-religious organizations. Tens of thousands of Muslim migrants come from conflict zones to small towns and cities across the country just like Spartanburg each year. But Spartanburg’s fighting spirit is still alive and Congressman Trey Gowdy, who represents the Spartanburg area, has challenged a plan to dump migrants, including possibly Syrians, there, inquiring whether they have criminal records and what background checks have been performed on them.

Netherlands: Families of those who joined Islamic State to sue government. By Robert Spencer,
Excerpt: The government should have done more to stop them, you see. Should these Muslim families have done more to stop them? Should they have not taught them the virtue of jihad against Infidels? Should they have tried to disabuse them of their jihadist notions? Of course not. It’s always the Infidel’s fault, you greasy Islamophobe. Don’t you know that by now?

Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at) Hall’s eleven books are listed here:

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Today's political news and conservative opinion


Posting early as taking John around and to dinner. Allergies and mucus in the lung is killing me. But I like the warm weather anyway. ~Bob

General News and Comment

Income inequality? Chipotle Manager: Hillary Clinton Didn't Leave Anything in Tip Jar. By David Knowles
Excerpt: One of the great political mysteries of the early 2016 presidential campaign has been solved: Hillary Clinton did not leave a tip at the Chipotle restaurant she visited during her road trip to Iowa on Sunday. "Her bill was $20 and some change, and they paid with $21 and left" without putting anything in a tip jar on the counter, Charles Wright, the manager at the Maumee, Ohio, Chipotle restaurant told Bloomberg. (Hillary Clinton told us, “Everyday Americans need a champion.” Apparently that champion doesn’t need to leave tips. Listen. The combined net worth of the Clintons is “anywhere from $100 to $200 million.” She can afford to tip, and she chooses to not leave a tip. Right then and there, she’s got the opportunity to help out the people behind the counter at Chipotle, and she chose not to. We’re supposed to elect her because she’s going to be the “champion” of “everyday Americans,” but she decided she needs those coins, totaling less than a dollar, more than the staff does. -- Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt. You don't get to be a dead-broke multi-millionaire by throwing money away on the little people. ~Bob)

Lefties don't Tip? By Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt
Excerpt: Apparently some lefties have picked up the habit of leaving little pre-printed screeds against the practice of tipping, declaring that “I do not leave tips anywhere because the law governing tipping causes pay inequality” and the practice “encourages both customers and servers to stereotype and discriminate.” Let me tell you something you don’t want to hear, anti-tip lefties: You’re cheap. You like your money, and you don’t like giving up any more of your money than you absolutely must to get your burrito or meal or whatever good or service you just purchased. You can dress up your selfishness and tightfistedness in as many social-justice slogans as you like, the same way you dress up your burrito with toppings, but you’re not fooling anyone. You’re greedy. You want money, and you’re not willing to part with another 15 or 20 percent of the agreed price the way everyone else does, because you don’t care enough about the guy or gal who just served you. You aren’t really that compassionate. You aren’t really that appreciative of people who work hard. None of the servers who served you see your little note and nod appreciatively at your principled stand. They swear under their breath. You’re worse than the non-tippers who you would call tightwads. Because the ordinary tightwads aren’t arrogant and selfish enough to claim that they’re doing the wait staff a favor.

Will Congress Follow Hillary?
Good ads on the Export-Import Bank. (Look, if you’re not willing to ditch “unseemly, inefficient, and irrelevant” “corporate welfare” “in the business of subsidizing private companies with taxpayer dollars” . . . then you’re not serious about cutting government spending. The Export-Import Bank is the sort of thing that liberals and progressive Democrats would oppose if they believed their anti-corporate rhetoric, and it’s the sort of thing any free-market, as opposed to pro-big-business, Republican should oppose. -- Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt)

Future Indictments Related to Export-Import Bank Likely, Agency Watchdog Says. By Melissa Quinn
Excerpt: As lawmakers debate whether to extend the life of the highly contested Export-Import Bank, the agency’s chief watchdog said today it’s likely more indictments could be issued as a result of more than 31 investigations into alleged fraud at the bank.
Michael McCarthy, the agency’s acting inspector general, made the comments during a joint hearing on the bank with the House Financial Services and Oversight and Government Reform Committees. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, questioned the bank’s watchdog on the indictment of former Ex-Im official Johnny Gutierrez, who allegedly accepted bribes from a Florida company in exchange for help securing taxpayer-backed financing.

Worth Reading (good video too): Clinton Foundation to keep accepting donations from foreign governments
Excerpt: The Clinton Foundation said late Wednesday that it will continue to accept donations from foreign governments during Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, despite concerns that such gifts will create a conflict of interest for the Democratic front-runner. The foundation's board said that donations directly to the foundation would only be allowed from six governments — Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway and the United Kingdom. However, other governments could continue to participate in the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), a subsidiary program that encourages donors to match contributions from others to tackle international problems without direct donations to the charity. 

Well, duh: Bill Clinton admits focusing on taxing the rich, like him, isn't enough to balance the budget
Excerpt: America's financial problems could not be solved by raising taxes on the rich, Bill Clinton said on Wednesday. During an economic speech in Washington, D.C. at Georgetown University caught on tape by Breitbart News former President Bill Clinton hypothetically said taking all of rich peoples' money wouldn't be enough to balance the United States budget.
Clinton, who is the richest living president, said he doesn't mind paying higher taxes than other Americans, 'but you could tax me at a hundred percent, and we couldn't bring growth back into the economy enough to balance the budget.' (But the Democrats keep willing the votes of middle and lower income American by passing programs they promise will be paid for by somebody else. ~Bob)

Obama White House Has Stalinized American Universities. By Mark Horne
Excerpt: American Universities are now places where students can launch heresy trials against professors for expressing politically incorrect opinions. Laura Kipnis is a professor in the department of radio, television, and film at Northwestern University. She recently wrote an editorial that was published in the Chronicle of Higher Education: “Sexual Paranoia Strikes Academe.” (Smart male students will stop dating female students and will avoid being alone with them. Risk is now too great. I had a black roommate in college, Joe Ferguson. Doubt that would be happen today--he's get too much heat from other militant black students. ~Bob)

Important: Greece in new downgrade by S&P for "unsustainable" commitments
Excerpt: Ratings agency S&P has downgraded Greece's credit rating again, saying it expects its debt and other financial commitments will be "unsustainable". It has dropped long and short-term sovereign credit ratings to CCC+/C from B-/B and says its outlook is negative. Markets use sovereign ratings to work out the interest rate at which investors should lend to a country. (If you lend to Greece, you are betting German taxpayers will go on bailing them out. Almost all countries with progressive welfare systems are swirling around the drain. America included. See: "The West and the Tyranny of Public Debt" See also: The Coming Collapse of the American Republic: And what you can do to prevent it. By Robert A. Hall

Gwyneth Paltrow’s poverty voyeurism. By Michelle Malkin
Excerpt: Gwynnie P is down with the struggle, comrades. She may make $19 million a year, own mansions in London, New York, Brentwood, Malibu and the Hamptons, charge $550 for her “travel backgammon set,” and fly by private jet, but she feels your pain. OK, it’s not as painful as her last $5,200 Thermage session in Santa Monica, but still, she really, really does feel the agony of the ordinary. (Young, fit-looking guy at Walgreens tried to buy two energy drinks with his SNAP card. It denied them, so he paid with a $100 bill. After he left, the tired-looking, forty-something clerk looked at me and said, "Our money." Just that. ~Bob)

Two Tax Bills Could Soon Affect Future Tax Returns
Excerpt: Even the most ardent supporters of taxing the rich are starting to realize that the estate tax is more bother than it's worth. It doesn't really target the very wealthy as much as it does those who are less wealthy but have planned their estates in order to pay as little of it as possible. Many heirs are asset rich, but cash poor. It only accounts for about one percent of federal tax revenues. Moreover, it does a poor job of redistributing wealth since most fortunes now are earned, not inherited.

Abolishing the Death Tax Could Increase Wages and Investments
Excerpt: Currently, the federal government seizes over 40 percent of an individual's estate when they die. While the President wants to destroy so many of those legacies and raise taxes, Congress has the chance to go in a different direction. Supporters often claim the death tax is vital for revenue, but in reality, it is a poor way for a state to raise revenue and has led people to leave a given state. According to a study by the Ocean State Research Institute, the death tax was the primary factor in residents leaving Rhode Island. The study found 107,086 or (one in ten) residents left the state between 1991 and 2009. While the state collected $341.3 million in estate tax receipts, it lost over $500 million in other taxes due to people migrating to other states.

Chicago: Economic Death Spiral After 84 Years of Democratic Control. By Larry Elder
Excerpt: Public schools are a mess, and the city's finances place their bonds at near junk level. In 2013, the city averaged 36 homicides a month, with the majority of them unsolved. CNN aired a series on Chicago called "Chicagoland," starring the city's dynamic mayor. ... The eight-part series showed a beleaguered city, struggling to get by on limited funds. In one episode, a valiant but embattled inner-city high school principal literally maps out "safe passage zones" -- routes her students could take to and from school to avoid gang violence. Think of it. A public school principal literally advising students on how they can go to and from school -- without getting shot.

L. Ron Obama and the Church of Progressivism. By Bruce Thornton 
Excerpt: Scientism has similarly characterized Progressivism from its beginnings. The core conceit of progressives is that traditional knowledge and wisdom are inadequate for understanding human nature and solving the more complex problems created by industrialism and new technologies. Those problems needed “sciences” like sociology, economics, and psychology: “The great triumph of modern psychology,” Walter Lippmann wrote in 1914, “is the growing capacity for penetrating to the desires that govern our thought.” Thus we need government by the elite “hundreds who are wise,” as Woodrow Wilson put it in 1887, and “enlightened administration,” as F.D.R. called it in 1932. Politics should no longer be, as the Founders envisioned, about leaders of virtue, experience, and wisdom governing within the Constitutional order that protects political freedom from conflicting factions and clashing “passions and interests.” (See: The Great Progressive Church by Robert A. Hall

Fondle-fest: More men claim groped at airport
Excerpt: The additional statements have prompted prosecutors to confirm they are reviewing the earlier case, which they said wasn’t prosecuted because the passenger couldn’t be identified. Lynn Kimbrough, a spokeswoman for the Denver prosecutor’s office, told the Post, “We were looking at it before through the narrow lens of a sex crime – now we’re broadening our perspective. It’s possible that some other charge may be appropriate.” ... “The media coverage may help us identify actual victims and that could make all the difference in how we go forward, but we are still in the investigative part of the process,” she said.

Rand Paul Blasts Loretta Lynch On Civil Asset Forfeiture
Excerpt: Sen. Rand Paul lambasted President Barack Obama’s nominee for attorney general, Loretta Lynch, at a Senate hearing Wednesday because of her role in “horrendous abuses” of civil asset forfeiture laws while a U.S. attorney. ...“Loretta Lynch became famous for her Herculean confiscation of private property,” Paul, who is running for the Republican presidential nomination, said at the hearing. Paul said Lynch confiscated over $100 million dollars during her time as U.S. attorney using the process of civil asset forfeiture, a process wrought with abuses.

Excerpt: Number one—Cuba is still involved with terrorism and is still harboring American and Spanish terrorists in Cuba—is still involved with Hamas and Hezbollah,” Suchlicki told the Daily Caller.... (Joanne) Chesimard fled the United States for Cuba in 1979 during a prison break 2 years after she was convicted of killing execution-style New Jersey State trooper Werner Foerster. She has been living in Castro’s regime ever since. According to the New York Times, she has been studying, writing and, caring for her daughter “as a guest” of the Cuban Government, which refuses to extradite her to the United States. (Expect she will be welcomed with open arms by Regime to join Sharpton's black liberation crew. --Barb)

Race Card News

Ethnic Constructs Are Pointless in Our Multiracial Society. By Victor Davis Hanson 
Excerpt: Vijay Chokal-Ingam, whose family immigrated from India, and who is the brother of sitcom actress Mindy Kaling, recently confessed that he, too, once changed his ethnic identity in frustration over not being admitted to medical school. The dark-skinned Chokal-Ingam shaved his head, used his middle name Jojo, and was admitted to Saint Louis Medical School as a minority African-American. Was he or was he not “black”? Bush and Chokal-Ingam are not the only ones who may be confused about ethnic identity or may believe such identity can be assumed or alleged instead of being innate. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren for much of her career advantageously checked off “Native American” when under consideration for law professorships.

VIDEO: Teens Launch Mob Attack on Man With Toddler… Here’s Why the Media Is Ignoring It
Excerpt: Surveillance footage showed a group of black teens launching a brutal, unprovoked mob-style attack on a man who was simply getting into his vehicle at a BP gas station in Memphis, Tenn., Monday. Memphis police said the teens were students at Northwest Prep academy and attacked the black man for absolutely no reason — and the national media has all but ignored it, apparently because it was a black-on-black crime. Rest assured that if this was a group of white children attacking the same black man, Memphis would have already erupted in city-wide protests.

Al Sharpton – “You are a waste of Human Flesh”
Video by a black kid. ~Bob

"You're Greener than Gore" News

Sustainability Gone Wild. By George F. Will
Excerpt: Syracuse University alumni are new additions to the lengthening list of persons who can stop contributing to their alma maters. The university has succumbed — after, one suspects, not much agonizing — to the temptation to indulge in progressive gestures. It will divest all fossil fuel stocks from its endowment. It thereby trumps Stanford, whose halfhearted exercise in right-mindedness has been to divest only coal stocks. Evidently carbon from coal is more morally disquieting than carbon from petroleum. The effect of these decisions on consumption of fossil fuels will be nil; the effect on the growth of institutions' endowments will be negative. The effect on alumni giving should be substantial, because divesting institutions are proclaiming that the goal of expanding educational resources is less important than the striking of righteous poses — if there can be anything righteous about flamboyant futility.

In Defense of Fossil Fuels, CO2, Prosperity, and Skeptical Scientists. By John Hayward
Excerpt: Well, then they wouldn’t want anything to do with the likes of the Climategate authors who admitted “obfuscating climate science,” or promoters of the false “hockey stick” graph that conjured historical warming trends out of tortured data, or former NASA scientist James Hansen, whose global warming predictions were off by a good 400 percent, would they? But of course, that’s not the kind of “obfuscation” they have in mind. Hansen is the first signatory on the letter. Their example of a forbidden museum sponsor is, of course, David Koch of the Koch Brothers, who loom so large as devils in the left’s theology. The writers of this letter definitely know who their audience is and what sort of whistles they respond to. (I want the oil companies and the Koch Brothers to know that I'm still accepting donations from them. ~Bob)

What’s the True Cost of Wind Power? By Randy Simmons, Newsweek
Excerpt: As consumers, we pay for electricity twice: once through our monthly electricity bill and a second time through taxes that finance massive subsidies for inefficient wind and other energy producers. Most cost estimates for wind power disregard the heavy burden of these subsidies on US taxpayers. But if Americans realized the full cost of generating energy from wind power, they would be less willing to foot the bill – because it’s more than most people think. Over the past 35 years, wind energy – which supplied just 4.4% of US electricity in 2014 – has received US$30 billion in federal subsidies and grants. 

Religion of Peace News

Excerpt: Four students were arrested after disrupting the planned showing of “American Sniper” Friday evening in the EMU Student Center Auditorium. The film had begun but was stopped and eventually cancelled. The 10 p.m. showing was cancelled as well. (If we don't like it, you can't see it. ~Bob)

Christians in Pakistan Continue Faithfully Even in the Face of Horrible Persecution
Excerpt: About 2.5 million people in Pakistan today claim the title of Christian (half Protestant and half Roman Catholic), and each new day brings the unknown to their doorstep. Today, will their church get bombed? Today, will their child’s school be attacked by gunmen? Today, will their neighbors attack their family and burn down their homes? Each day is filled with the unknown, but still they faithfully continue.

Afghan Colonel Was Paid $250,000 to Kill U.S. Air Force Personnel, Pentagon Cover-Up Ensued. By Patrick Poole
Excerpt: A bombshell revelation has emerged about the incident responsible for the greatest U.S. Air Force loss of life during the War on Terror, the deadliest “green-on-blue” attack during U.S. involvement in Afghanistan. On April 27, 2011, Afghan Air Force Colonel Ahmad Gul gunned down eight U.S. Air Force personnel and a civilian contractor inside the Afghan Air Force headquarters, including investigators who had just arrived in the country to examine rampant corruption in the Afghan military.

Wisconsin: Public school students must “pretend you’re a Muslim.” By Robert Spencer, Jihadwatch.Org
Excerpt: Once they’re pretending they’re Muslim, students must describe the “struggles” they face. When will Union Grove High School have students pretend that they’re Nigerian Christians, and the struggles they face when Muslims of Boko Haram come to their village, burn down their church, and take their female children captive as sex slaves? When will Union Grove High School have students pretend they’re Jews in Paris, mocked and menaced and physically attacked by Muslims for daring to be Jews? (If they get into it, they'll murder any gay students. ~Bob)

Syrian Scud Unveils Turk Vulnerabilities. By Burak Bekdil
Excerpt: On the morning of March 25, a Russian-made Syrian scud missile estimated to have been fired from a range of 180 kilometers exploded near the Reyhanli district in Turkey's southernmost city of Hatay, neighboring Syria. The projectile left a 15-meter-wide crater in a stream bed, broke the windows of the surrounding houses, caused the roof of a building in the nearby military unit to collapse, damaged two military vehicles and inflicted minor injuries on five Turkish civilians.

Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at) Hall’s eleven books are listed here: