POPCORN!!! Al Qaeda suicide bomber takes out ISIS brigade leader

November 24, 2015

satire raccoon excellent

Okay, so I wrote just yesterday that posting was going to be sporadic for a while, but I just cannot let this go by without a hearty “Yeah, baby!”

A recent suicide bombing in southern Syria shows the rivalry between Al Qaeda and ISIS is more than just a contest to see who can kill the most infidels — the groups are using classic terror techniques on each other.

The Nov. 15 bombing came at a top-level meeting of the Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade, a key ISIS militia known for its bloody and vicious hold over parts of the Golan Heights. Six of the group’s top men were killed, including Muhammad “Abu Ali” al-Baridi, the shadowy head of the group who went by the nickname “The Uncle.”

Al Nusra Front, Al Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate, quickly took credit, gloating on Twitter about the “heroic” attack.

“The Islamic State [ISIS], that controls the closest area to the Israel border in the Syrian Golan Heights, suffered a severe blow and lost its entire top command in the area in one fell swoop,” noted Alex Fishman, a veteran military correspondent for Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot.

Al Qaeda and ISIS, which broke off from the former group, have made a show of hating each other as each fought for leadership of the jihad against the infidels — essentially everyone who’s not them. Al Qaeda’s allies, the Taliban, even declared a jihad against ISIS, which ISIS reciprocated. I had sometimes wondered if this wasn’t for show, to hide the level of cooperation and fool Western analysts.

But, given this development (and assuming it was really al Nusra), it looks like the spat between them is real — and will only get worse when ISIS inevitably retaliates. This is a culture of honor and shame, and the “Caliph” cannot let this blow to his authority go unavenged.

And I plan to sit back and enjoy the show. smiley popcorn


Sporadic posting for the foreseeable future, but have some “Cornbread.”

November 23, 2015
And this is just the start.

And this is just the start.

I try to put up at least one post a day, even if it’s just a “Hey, look at this” post, but changes in the real world are going to make even that a difficult schedule to hold to. The changes are, in the main, good ones, but nonetheless they’ll eat into my time for reading the news and looking for the interesting bits.

Hopefully things will eventually stabilize and allow more time for posting, but, until then, do check out the sites listed in the sidebar to the right: they’re all good ones.

Though I do need to update that list…

In the meantime, let me leave you with some hot hard-bop jazz: the great Lee Morgan playing “Cornbread.”

And if I don’t post before Turkey Day, have a wonderful Thanksgiving one and all!

#RaiseTheWage – Applebee’s testing tablet ordering in California

November 22, 2015
"But at least we won the election! Obama!!"

“But at least we raised the wage!”

Action, meet reaction.

Last night I took my wife and our two young grandchildren to Applebee’s. It went great — our 4 and 2 year old charges were more decorous than half the patrons.

But I digress. Here’s what caught my attention: Applebee’s is testing a new ordering policy — using the technology that is rapidly becoming prominent in fast food restaurants. Every table had an online electronic tablet, with the menu, ordering and payment process built in. One can place the order and have the busboy bring your food.

For now, one can still use a waiter for service, but obviously the plan is to reduce or eliminate that service. That makes PARTICULARLY good sense in California, which is rapidly becoming the home of the $15 minimum wage. Moreover, California is one of only 7 states that requires “tip” employees to be paid a FULL minimum wage IN ADDITION TO all tips collected. That can make a meal too pricey — reducing the number of times patrons choose to dine out.

California’s minimum wage is currently $9 per hour and will rise to $10 in January. Here in Los Angeles, the minimum wage has been $15 dollars since June, and there is pressure to make that the statewide minimum.

The upshot? Expect to see more and more restaurants going to electronic ordering and payment systems, and more and more waiters and waitresses out of work, as progressive social justice warriors and the pols who appease them make it impossible to do business in the once-Golden State. Again, for those didn’t learn this in school, math wins:

Labor is a cost, because the business owner has to provide wages and, often, benefits that cost him more money. When a government mandate increases that cost, the business owner has three choices: pass the cost along to the customer, who may decide it’s too much and stop shopping there; cut employee hours and stop hiring to save on labor costs, thus costing potential jobs and putting a burden on workers still employed; and, finally, just decide it’s not worth it anymore and close up shop. In the low-margin bookseller business, Borderlands’ owner chose the last course as the only one viable.

San Francisco’s Borderlands bookstore chose to close its doors because it could no longer make enough money to make staying in business worthwhile. Applebee’s (and I’m sure other restaurants and fast-food establishments) are looking to cut back on labor hours in order to balance the increased cost of labor. In each case, employees have lost jobs as a consequence of government interference in the labor-management relationship. It’s only going to get worse, too as long as statists in government continue to act as if the laws of economics will bend to their will and that their actions have no consequences.

It must be nice in their fantasy world; it’s a shame others have to suffer because of those fantasies.

The Value-Added Tax: A Nixonian Scheme to Fund Bigger Government

November 21, 2015

Phineas Fahrquar:

The VAT is to me an obviously bad idea, especially as long as there is also an income tax. But why Senators Cruz and Paul would support one is way beyond me.

Originally posted on International Liberty:

In early 2013, a reader asked me the best place to go if America suffered a Greek-style economic collapse.

I suggested Australia might be the best option, even if I would be too stubborn to take my own advice.

Perhaps because of an irrational form of patriotism, I’m fairly certain that I will always live in the United States and I will be fighting to preserve (or restore) liberty until my last breath.

But while I intend to stay in America, there is one thing that would make me very pessimistic about my country’s future.

Simply stated, if politicians ever manage to impose a value-added tax on the United States, the statists will have won a giant victory and it will be much harder to restrain big government.

But you don’t have to believe me. Folks on the left openly admit that a VAT is necessary to…

View original 1,184 more words

California loses another business, but at least we have a higher minimum wage

November 20, 2015
"But at least we won the election! Obama!!"

“But at least we raised the wage!”

It’s now widely regarded as legend and fable, but there once was a time when California created an almost unending wealth of jobs, leading to a good life and prosperity for her people.

Nowadays the progressives who run our state, enabled by their sheep-like voters who dominate the coast and the major urban areas, are doing all they can to run businesses (and jobs and prosperity) out of California, and California into the ground.

Just ask the owner of Woof & Poof:

One of the few things actually made in Chico may, sadly, no longer be made in Chico. Woof & Poof C.E.O. and owner Roger Hart said today, the company is having to cease production. Hart made the statement today at the annual warehouse sale.

Every year on the first Saturday of November a sale is held at the warehouse on Orange Street. Woof & Poof products include everything from stuffed collector dolls, blankets and door hangers to musical Santas for the holidays.

The unique, quality products are sold to more than 600 stores in the United States and Nordstrom’s. Woof & Poof has been in Chico for 40 years, but that’s about to end. Hart says a raise in minimum wage and workers compensation are just a couple of issues that have made it difficult to keep the business financially afloat here. Hart said, “The high cost of doing business in California coupled with ridiculous regulatory environment makes it virtually impossible to do business.” He says he has seen an 11% hike in payroll.

Time for another lesson in economics, kiddies:

Labor is a cost, because the business owner has to provide wages and, often, benefits that cost him more money. When a government mandate increases that cost, the business owner has three choices: pass the cost along to the customer, who may decide it’s too much and stop shopping there; cut employee hours and stop hiring to save on labor costs, thus costing potential jobs and putting a burden on workers still employed; and, finally, just decide it’s not worth it anymore and close up shop. In the low-margin bookseller business, Borderlands’ owner chose the last course as the only one viable.

Borderlands was a bookstore that closed in San Francisco after the owner could no longer afford the minimum wage. That was the owner’s choice, and now Roger Hart has decided to join him. I’ve no doubt there have been others, nor that there will be many more like him who choose the same.

Chico, for those who don’t know it, is a small city in the north part of the state, an area that, like the interior east and south, has been treated as an exploitable colony by our coastal progressive elites and the pols the force on us. The damage their policies of “economic, social, and environmental justice” have laid waste to farmland and small towns and cities up and down the state, far from the trendy restaurants of San Francisco or Hollywood, where I bet none of the 30 workers losing their jobs at Woof & Poof could afford to eat.

No wonder there are secession movements.

via @hipEchik on Facebook

PS: One of the burdensome regulations that caused Mr. Hart to throw up his hands? A state font mandate. You read that right. Because he had used the wrong size of font on pillow tags, an inspector threatened to seize his entire inventory. Instead, he had to spend a lot of money to make corrections.

I’m surprised he wasn’t required to cut down a tree with a herring, too.

#ParisAttacks Jihad plotter meets gruesome end, world says “Darn.”

November 20, 2015

Well done, mes amis!

Forgive me for being uncharitable, but the only thing I regret about this is that this savage didn’t spend days dying in agony:

The suspected mastermind of the Paris terror attacks was killed in yesterday’s dramatic police siege on his safe house, prosecutors have confirmed.

Belgian jihadist Abdelhamid Abaaoud, 27, was first hit in the head by a police sniper and then blown to pieces by numerous grenades during the raid in the suburb of Saint-Denis.

His body was so unrecognisable it has taken more than 24 hours for forensic tests to confirm he is now dead using DNA from his saliva.

Paris prosecutors said his body was ‘riddled with bullets’, adding that it was unclear whether Abaaoud had detonated a suicide belt.

Now the French authorities will have to explain how they allowed the known terrorist, who was thought to be in Syria, to operate so freely in their country, killing 129 people in the process.

‘This is a major failing,’ said Roland Jaquard, from the International Observatory for Terrorism.

The deuce you say, Roland.

Reports the day after the shootout said French police (and perhaps military) unloaded about 5,000 rounds at Abaaoud and his suicide-bomber companion. Let no one accuse Paris of “holding back.”

Meanwhile, I’d like to think, but sorely doubt, that our president would take note: this how you deal with jihad-terrorists, not bemoan the lack of a jobs program for them.

PS: I despise Vladimir Putin, but this was a nice gesture on his part.

Donald Trump won’t rule out religious identification cards

November 19, 2015
Fine as long as the mouth stays shut

Fine as long as the mouth stays shut

No. Not just no, but Hell, no.

Yahoo News asked Trump whether his push for increased surveillance of American Muslims could include warrantless searches. He suggested he would consider a series of drastic measures.

“We’re going to have to do things that we never did before. And some people are going to be upset about it, but I think that now everybody is feeling that security is going to rule,” Trump said. “And certain things will be done that we never thought would happen in this country in terms of information and learning about the enemy. And so we’re going to have to do certain things that were frankly unthinkable a year ago.”

Yahoo News asked Trump whether this level of tracking might require registering Muslims in a database or giving them a form of special identification that noted their religion. He wouldn’t rule it out.

“We’re going to have to — we’re going to have to look at a lot of things very closely,” Trump said when presented with the idea. “We’re going to have to look at the mosques. We’re going to have to look very, very carefully.”

This is the kind of crap that can only come from someone either woefully ignorant of History or suffering from a painfully tin ear.

I take a backseat to no one in my dislike for Islam and my wariness of jihad infiltration; I do not think we should be admitting Syrian refugees because, among other reasons, our ability to vet them for ties to jihadist groups has significant weaknesses. Just ask the FBI Director. To let them in is to take unconscionable risk with the safety of the American people.

But religious ID cards? Even to have that tossed out without immediately dismissing it, to include it in a range of reasonable possibilities, should disqualify him as a serious candidate for dog-catcher, let alone the presidency.

Not only is the idea offensive in itself (1), but I can already imagine the Democrats making hay out of this, whether he wins the nomination or not:

“We condemn the outrageous and racist suggestion of the Republican front-runner that Muslims should carry special identification.”

And picture Clinton, Obama, Wasserman-Schultz, Schumer, and every other Democrat intoning that over and over again in every venue they could find.  Imagine every single Jewish group in the US rightfully denouncing this, even if they loathe the Democrats’ treatment of Israel. Pity the poor serious Republican candidates who will likely have to answer question after question about what this moron said, rather than focusing on the crucial issues of the campaign.

Are we sure Donald Trump isn’t a deep-cover agent provocateur for the Democrats?

Via Jonah Goldberg, to whom I give the last word:

Now, I’ll bet Trump walks some of this back in the next 48 hours, just as he did with his initial call to admit Syrian refugees and other statements that have departed his posterior before his brain could catch them. But let’s be clear, getting the federal government involved in tracking and labeling citizens’ religious affiliations is abhorrent on the merits and a huge invitation to profound mischief down the road. Creating databases on all members of any religion is a terrible idea as well.


But I have little interest in going so far … that we actually resemble the straw men the Left has been screaming about all along.


(1) What else, Donald? Shall we make them wear green crescents on their clothing?



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