Brave Knights of Allah hide behind women

December 31, 2010

But then, women are little better than chattel in Islam, so why not use them as living bombs?

The Taliban and al Qaeda have established female suicide bombing cells in remote areas of northwestern Pakistan and northeastern Afghanistan. The female suicide bombers have struck in both Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The existence of the cells, which appeared evident after female suicide bombers attacked twice over the past five months in Afghanistan and Pakistan, was confirmed by a 12-year-old Pakistani girl named Meena Gul.

Gul, who said she was trained to be a “human bomb,” was detained by Pakistani police in the Munda area in Pakistan’s northwestern district of Dir, according to the Times of India.

“Gul said that women suicide bombers were trained for their deadly task in small cells on both sides of the porous border and were dispatched to their missions with a sermon, ‘God will reward you with a place in heaven.’”

Oh, and did I mention some of the women are just girls? Yes, for the valiant jihadi, it’s women and children first. Preferably in the same person.

A long time ago, someone explained to me the First Rule of Texas Common Law: “He needed killing.”

Well, these barbarians need killing.

RELATED: These “holy warriors” also exploit emotionally abused women, the elderly, and the developmentally disabled. Such wonderful people.

 


Brain-dead moral equivalence

December 30, 2010

Colman McCarthy at the Washington Post:

To oppose ROTC, as I have since my college days in the 1960s, when my school enticed too many of my classmates into joining, is not to be anti-soldier. I admire those who join armies, whether America’s or the Taliban’s: for their discipline, for their loyalty to their buddies and to their principles, for their sacrifices to be away from home.

So there’s no difference between serving in the US military and the Taliban? Between being a citizen-soldier for a democratic republic under the rule of law and a hired gun of a tyrannical movement that throws acid in girls’ faces for trying to learn to read? Really? Seriously??

God, I pity anyone in this morally bankrupt moron’s classes.

via Max Boot

UPDATE: Victor Davis Hanson and Jonah Goldberg demolish this idiot.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


“The United States will be transformed into an Islamic Republic”

December 30, 2010

Those aren’t my words, but those of Egyptian journalist ‘Ata Abd Al-Aal, via MEMRI:

From the transcript:

‘Ata Abd Al-Aal: They should send religious guides, as the Americans call them, or preachers, who should put an end to the calls not to participate in the elections. Some of the sheiks who go to the US during the month of Ramadhan or on other religious occasions incite the Muslims living there not to take part in the elections, because they are living among infidels. This is very troubling, and runs counter to the rights of the Muslims in the US.

The Islamic institutions in the Islamic world should send preachers who are well versed in Islam, who know how to preach to the American mentality, and who are proficient in English and can communicate with the Americans. Over there, they must forsake their own material and personal interests, and must act for the sake of Allah.

[Ultimately,] the US will be transformed into an Islamic republic, as a sheik in the US told me. He said that the most important place for the future of Islam, after Mecca and Medina, was the US.

Now, I will give the chap credit for saying Muslims should participate in elections; the usual radical line is that voting is a sin, for democracy gives to people the right to make laws, a right that belongs only to Allah. But, bear in mind that his suggestion is only a tactic: exploiting democracy to eventually bring about the antithesis of democracy, an Islamic republic ruled by Sharia law.

No, thanks.

PS: No, I am not advocating denying Muslims in America their voting rights as citizens. (Just in case anyone got that dumb idea stuck in their head.) But we do need to be aware of what cultural jihadists like Al-Aal have in mind, so that it may be exposed and opposed.


The Constitution is just too confusing!

December 30, 2010

Well, it is for Ezra Klein, one of the Washington Post’s bloggers. You see, it’s over 100 years old and the language is just too confusing:

Click the image to watch.

Newsbusters provides a transcript. Here’s the relevant part:

[MSNBC HOSTESS NORAH] O’DONNELL: You heard all the different politicians talking about the Constitution. Well, this is what’s going to happen. When Republicans take over next week, they’re going to do something that apparently has never been done in the 221-year history of the House of Representatives. They are going to read the Constitution aloud. Is this a gimmick?

KLEIN: Yes, it’s a gimmick. [Laughs] I mean, you can say two things about it. One, is that it has no binding power on anything. And two, the issue of the Constitution is not that people don’t read the text and think they’re following. The issue of the Constitution is that the text is confusing because it was written more than 100 years ago and what people believe it says differs from person to person and differs depending on what they want to get done. So, I wouldn’t expect to much coming out of this.

Ezra, dude, let me help. You have this thing called a “brain” and access to a wonderful process called “reason.” If you use them, then many confusing things, such as the basic governing document of the United States, actually become comprehensible. Try it some time; you might be surprised at the results.

Okay, snark aside, his argument is just plain silly. Sure, language changes over time and words develop new definitions. Changing usages of punctuation can shift meaning. But it’s not as if the Constitution exists in a vacuum, without any context. Nor has English changed so much from 1787 that our poor brains can’t parse it. (Just curious, Ezra: do you have problems with Shakespeare, too? I mean his plays are over 400 years old…)

See, Ezra, we have these marvelous resources available to help us understand what was meant way back then: the Federalist and Anti-Federalist Papers present us with the arguments of both sides for and against the ratification of the Constitution, and they went on at great length about what the words meant. (In fact, our Bill of Rights was produced largely as a compromise with the Anti-Federalists, who were gathering momentum to call a second Constitutional Convention to fix what they saw as problems with the core document.)

If those aren’t enough, we also have state constitutions from the time, showing us how already existing governments understood their roles and power, and the records of the debates in state conventions prior to their ratification votes. And we also have Supreme Court decisions from the early republic showing us how learned men much closer to the Founding interpreted the Constitution. Okay, so maybe their language will confuse you, too. I can but point the way.

Sure, there are are vague patches in the Constitution: the “necessary and proper” clause forces us to think about the nature and scope of government, and what is necessary to its operation. The “general welfare” and “commerce” clauses have been badly misinterpreted over the years (largely by progressive judges). But it’s not as if we’re left with nothing to do but throw up our hands and say it’s so confusing that it makes our brains hurt. We can use the resources available to figure out those vague parts — you know, reason.

Honestly, what Klein is saying, and what his fellow progressives have been saying for over 100 years, is that government is simply too difficult, too complex, too confusing for the common folk, and that we need experts to guide us and make decisions for us. They know what’s best, so stop fussing over a centuries-old and obsolete piece of parchment.

But that’s the beauty of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights: so short that any citizen can carry it in his breast pocket and plain enough that most parts are readily understood, while those that aren’t can be reasoned through. That’s one of the things that empowers the citizen, that he can check the owner’s manual when he likes to see how things should be done. Your vision of a Constitution that’s too confusing for the modern day instead turns citizens into subjects dependent on the dispensations of the elite.

The Constitution is a challenge, Ezra; it is not confusing.

LINKS: Klein explains himself on the confusing Constitution and Republican gimmicks.

UPDATE: Iowahawk skewers Klein on the lance of satire. At Liberty Pundits, Dr. Melissa Clouthier lays bare what Klein and his fellow progressives really want.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Privatize Social Security?

December 29, 2010

If empirical observation shows a better solution to old-age pensions and public debt, shouldn’t we take a serious look at it? It’s worked wonders in Chile:

Pinera’s proposal began with scrapping the payroll tax on the country’s social security system and inviting all workers to take the money they were contributing and move it into a private pension.

Workers would be free to choose the fund, how much to put in, and at what age they would retire, with a minimal safety net built into the design. Past contributions would be refunded to workers by government bond. And anyone who didn’t like the idea was free to remain with the system as it was. It was a huge success: 95% of Chile’s workers chose the private system.

Pinera told the public to expect a compounded 4% rate of return under the private plan. But as of 2010, the average annual rate of return was 9.23%, far higher than promised.

By contrast, the U.S. social security system, which today accounts for a quarter of the U.S. government budget, is slated to give retiring workers in the next decade a 1% to 2% rate of return. And those entering the system today will see a negative return.

Chile’s implicit pension debt fell to just 6% of GNP — compared with 100% in the U.S., 300% in France and 450% in Italy, leaving Chile with no net debt.

Better still, the accumulated savings in the pension funds fueled Chile’s spectacular economic ascent, taking real incomes from about $4,000 per capita in the early 1980s to $15,000 today, and GDP to the 6% range most years for nearly 20 years. With that record, is it any surprise that Chile this year earned itself a membership card into the club of rich nations, the OECD?

We know our current system is heading for collapse, so, other than fear fed by the demagoguery of the Left, what’s to stop us from looking at a model similar to Chile’s? Shouldn’t workers be able to keep their own money in their own retirement accounts, instead of relying on handouts from a government-run Ponzi scheme?

via Fausta

LINKS: Further observations at No Runny Eggs


California: Brown’s austerity budget?

December 29, 2010

The LA Times has an interesting article today about incoming Governor Brown’s proposed budget – interesting mainly for what it hints at and leaves out, and secondarily for a bit of media bias. First, the proposal:

Gov.-elect Jerry Brown is laying the groundwork for a budget plan that would couple deep cuts to state services, including university systems and welfare programs, with a request that voters extend temporary tax hikes on vehicles, income and sales that are set to expire next year.

The blueprint Brown will unveil when he takes office early next month also is expected to take aim at several tax breaks and subsidies that have been fiercely guarded by the business lobby in Sacramento, according to people involved in budget discussions with the incoming administration.

Among the breaks are multibillion-dollar incentives for redevelopment projects and hundreds of millions of dollars of “enterprise zone” credits meant to encourage investment in blighted neighborhoods. Also targeted is a recent change to state business tax formulas that has saved corporate California roughly $1 billion.

The combination of austere spending and extended tax hikes is designed to confront both parties and their allied interest groups with painful choices that Brown says are necessary to truly resolve the state’s massive budget problems. He intends to take swift action, using the political capital of a new governor to confront a deficit that could easily subsume his governorship.

In a symbolic gesture to garner the trust of a skeptical public, Brown has already pledged to cut his own office budget by 25%.

First promising sign: the Governor-elect recognizes we’re in a deep mess and cannot keep spending the way we have been for the past 25 years :

California state spending has outgrown the state’s tax base by 1.3 percentage points annually for 25 years. Simple arithmetic dictates that in lieu of constant tax increases, this perpetuates a deficit.

From 1985 to 2009 state GDP in California grew by 5.5 percent per year, on average (not adjusted for inflation). Annual growth in state spending was 6.8 percent, on average. Three spending categories have dominated this spending spree: public schools, cash assistance and Medicaid. Making up half of state spending, they are outlets for traditional redistributive welfare state policy.

(h/t Wyoming Liberty Group)

Back to the Times article, Brown plans to ask for cuts to California’s welfare, public school, California State University, and University of California allocations. He also wants to change or eliminate special enterprise zones (areas of lowered taxes to encourage local hiring) and the way a particular tax is calculated for businesses. Finally, he wants voters to approve an extension of onerous tax increases enacted a few years ago, which will expire with this fiscal year.

It’s a mixed bag, with something to tick off everyone. By one theory of politics, that means he must be doing something right. Teacher’s unions and the universities, for example, will hate the cuts to education. But, let’s be blunt here: CSU and UC students, even after recent fee hikes, are still heavily subsidized and charged nowhere near market rate for what they get. And higher education is a public good, not an unalienable right. If the state can’t afford to keep subsidizing it at current levels, then logic dictates cutting back. And it’s not as if public school performance in California has warranted giving the teachers unions more, instead of forcing some competition and choice into the system, as has New Orleans.

The proposals to cut back business enterprise zones will surely anger business communities, but the article mentions (but does not cite directly) studies arguing that those zones have not had the desired effect. Shouldn’t fiscal conservatives be open to the idea of ending programs that don’t work, even if they are ones conservatives sympathize with?

One of the greatest obstacles Brown’s proposals face is the extension of tax rates. California is already one of the mostly highly taxed states in the nation, one of the reasons businesses and people are leaving for other states that don’t punish success nearly as much. Here in the Golden State, if you make more than $47,055, but less than a million, you pay the second-highest rate, 9.55%. Sales tax in Los Angeles county is 9.75%, which is a 1.5% premium over the state rate of 8.25%. And auto registration fees (the dread car tax, which was part of why Gray Davis lost his job in 2003) is 1.15% of the car’s value. Brown is hoping that spending cuts will persuade a skeptical and angry public to extend these tax rates in a special election in return for deep spending cuts. We’ll see.

The devil, of course, is in the details, and Brown’s representative was deliberately vague, probably not wanting to show his hand in advance of what is sure to be a hard fight in the legislature. Here are some questions I have for the once-and-future governor:

  • Are these spending cuts permanent reductions in bloated state spending, or just a temporary cutback until the economy picks up, at which point we’ll go on a binge again?
  • When would the extended tax rates expire? When the economy recovers, will you consider tax cuts to stimulate economic growth?
  • Will you push for an increase in school choice to break the stranglehold of the teachers unions and make sure we’re getting value for the money we put into education?
  • What will you do to reform California’s regulatory environment, which helps make this state the worst in which to do business?
  • What will you do to curb the corrupting influence of other public-employee unions?

I’m sure there are a lot more questions, but these are a start — as is Brown’s plan. We’ll see what comes out in the details in the months ahead.

TANGENT: The article does a pretty good job with the basics, but still reflects the LA Times’ pro-Democrat, pro-progressive bias. When discussing portions of Brown’s proposal that the business community might not like, it mentions only opposition with no word about people who might be hurt by the changes. When talking about cuts to welfare and education, we get pity-words about students and the poor, with no attention given to the effectiveness of those programs — unlike we see in the discussion of enterprise zones.  Not egregious, not outrageous, but sadly typical.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Jihad terror plot busted in Denmark

December 29, 2010

I’m surprised Jyllands-Posten doesn’t put armed guards in front of their offices to protect their people, since brave, brave jihadis are still trying to kill them for publishing satirical cartoons five years ago:

Five men planning to shoot as many people as possible in a building housing the newsroom of a paper that published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad were arrested Wednesday in an operation that halted an imminent attack, intelligence officials said.

Denmark’s intelligence service said it arrested four men in two raids in suburbs of the capital, Copenhagen, and seized an automatic weapon, a silencer and ammunition. Swedish police said they arrested a 37-year-old Swedish citizen of Tunisian origin living in Stockholm.

“An imminent terror attack has been foiled,” said Jakob Scharf, head of the Danish Security and Intelligence Service, or PET. He described some the suspects as “militant Islamists with relations to international terror networks” and said that more arrests were possible.

PET said it seized a 44-year-old Tunisian, a 29-year-old Lebanese-born man and a 30-year-old who were living in Sweden and had entered Denmark late Tuesday or early Wednesday. The fourth person detained was a 26-year-old Iraqi asylum-seeker living in Copenhagen.

And let’s not forget that some of the cartoonists who drew these “blasphemous” doodlings are still in hiding, in fear for their lives.

Freedom of speech? Forget it. Tolerance of other opinions, even ones you don’t like? Bah! What matters is the promise of rewards in the afterlife for killing the enemies of Allah, as in Qur’an 9:111 :

Lo! Allah hath bought from the believers their lives and their wealth because the Garden will be theirs: they shall fight in the way of Allah and shall slay and be slain. It is a promise which is binding on Him in the Torah and the Gospel and the Qur’an. Who fulfilleth His covenant better than Allah? Rejoice then in your bargain that ye have made, for that is the supreme triumph.

NOTE: The image at the top is one of the Dread Cartoons of Blasphemy. Visit Zombietime for the full archive.


Zimbabwe: real harm done by WikiLeaks

December 28, 2010

There are thankfully few genuine hell-holes among the nations of the Earth. One of them is, of course, North Korea. Among the others, Zimbabwe has to be among the worst. After years of horrific misrule that has turned what was once the breadbasket of southern Africa into a Dystopia of starvation and fear, some hope arrived in 2009 when the government of dictator Robert Mugabe was forced to enter a coalition government with Morgan Tsvangirai, a democratic reformer. It was just a glimmer, but it nonetheless held out the possibility of restoring democratic government to Zimbabwe, fixing its trashed economy, and healing its brutalized people.

That is, until WikiLeaks revealed to the world (and Robert Mugabe) the details of a meeting between Tsvangirai and a US/European delegation about sanctions placed on Zimbabwe to encourage reform and Mugabe’s resistance to them:

To overcome this, [Tsvangirai] said that the sanctions on Zimbabwe “must be kept in place” to induce Mugabe into giving up some political power. The prime minister openly admitted the incongruity between his private support for the sanctions and his public statements in opposition. If his political adversaries knew Tsvangirai secretly supported the sanctions, deeply unpopular with Zimbabweans, they would have a powerful weapon to attack and discredit the democratic reformer.

Later that day, the U.S. embassy in Zimbabwe dutifully reported the details of the meeting to Washington in a confidential U.S. State Department diplomatic cable. And slightly less than one year later, WikiLeaks released it to the world.

The reaction in Zimbabwe was swift. Zimbabwe’s Mugabe-appointed attorney general announced he was investigating the Prime Minister on treason charges based exclusively on the contents of the leaked cable. While it’s unlikely Tsvangirai could be convicted on the contents of the cable alone, the political damage has already been done. The cable provides Mugabe the opportunity to portray Tsvangirai as an agent of foreign governments working against the people of Zimbabwe. Furthermore, it could provide Mugabe with the pretense to abandon the coalition government that allowed Tsvangirai to become prime minister in 2009.

Emphasis added. Read the whole thing.

Dear Julian Assange, his craven creature Bradley Manning, and all you who work for WikiLeaks: you in your self-righteous, sanctimonious arrogance may well have cost Morgan Tsvangirai his life. You have certainly badly damaged the cause of democratic reform in a land that desperately needs it.

May you all go to prison, and may you rot there for the rest of your pathetic lives.

via Legal Insurrection

RELATED: Other posts on Zimbabwe.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Still don’t think we should quit the UN?

December 28, 2010

If yesterday’s post didn’t convince you, maybe Mary Katharine Ham’s “The top 10 UN-believable moments of 2010” will. Here’s one:

No. 7: Have you ever wondered what it might look like if the U.S. subjected itself to a peer review of its human rights record by the world’s leading violators of human rights? The UN’s got you covered, and the Obama administration is honored to be there for it.

The Human Rights Council, which is now only 40 percent democratic, created a process in 2006 by which all members submit a report on their human rights records to the review of the council every four years. This year, Obama administration representatives Esther Brimmer and Michael Posner listened as Iran, North Korea, Egypt and China, among others, lectured the United States on its human rights record and history of racial discrimination.

Don’t forget, it was at this same “peer” review that the Obama administration claimed it was fighting for human rights — by suing Arizona. Yes, an American state, a democratic republic with the rule of law, was held up for judgment to… North Korea. Sorry, that still galls me.

Anyway, be sure to read the rest of MKH’s list; some are real doozies.

via The Anchoress

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


“The Venezuela of North America”

December 28, 2010

Okay, now that hurts!

Sadly, at least in terms of economics, it’s also not far off the mark. In the following video from Americans For Prosperity California, Business Relocation Coach Joe Vranich gives ten top reasons why California companies are calling the moving company:

via Vox

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Defund the United Nations

December 27, 2010

When I was young, I used to be amused by the crudely-made billboards I’d see along the highways in Southern California that demanded we get out of the UN. Usually they were put up by some John Birch-affiliate, whom I would write off as a bunch of kooks.

Well, I still do think of John Birch and their conspiracy theories as lunatic (thank you, Bill Buckley, for banishing them from the conservative movement), but the sentiment of saying bye-bye to the United Nations now strikes a chord with me. A corrupt playground for dictators and tyrants, it’s also convened two of the worst antisemitic assemblies held by any national government or international agency since the Wansee conference*, “Durban I” and Durban II,” the UN “World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance.” Now they want to hold “Durban III” — in New York City.

Roger L. Simon is, like any decent person would be,  outraged:

To return to the langue diplomatique, these events are la vie a l’envers — life upside down. They are the reverse of what they pretend to be and should be labeled the “World Conference for the Promotion of Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance.” I attended Durban II in Geneva – you can see some reports here and here — and I can say personally that I have never seen anything as quite literally insane. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the keynote speaker of a human rights conference.

The whole thing virtually broke down when several European delegates walked out on the Iranian despot in the midst of one of his predictable anti-Semitic screeds (the US, despite some equivocation, had ultimately declined to go in the first place). UN officials ran and hid from the media after this debacle and you would think they wouldn’t want to repeat such a disgrace but… here they go again with Durban III this September… and in New York, of all places.

These events (I, II and, most probably, III) are basically Festivals of Anti-Semitism, and the UN membership — a substantial portion anyway — just can’t stop themselves from doing it again. It’s pathological, really. They pay lip service to the idea the anti-Zionism is not anti-Semitism, but this notion has become increasingly risible. UN attention to tiny Israel (still with under eight million population — less than L.A. county) is nearly as big as all other states combined. Why is that? By 1992 alone there were 65 resolutions concerning Israel. By January 2009, this number rose to 225. All these resolutions are largely led by Islamic states that are basically judenrein, although many of them had substantial Jewish populations in the past.

It’s a black comic moral travesty and our money is paying for it.

The first steps should be to stop this outrage from happening on American soil: official protests (Where is the State Department on this, Madame Secretary?), a denial of funds from Congress (Hello, House Republicans!), a refusal of entry into the US for any delegates, and, if need be, public protests at the conference itself.

And, once it’s held –wherever it’s held– we should walk out of the United Nations, itself; an irredeemable, farcical organization unworthy of our time, our money, and the validation our presence gives it.

Maybe it’s time to make my own billboard.

*And, yes, I’m making that comparison deliberately.

UPDATE: Welcome readers of Legal Insurrection! And thanks for the POtD link, professor!

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Corrupt Crony to replace Hillary at State?

December 27, 2010

Allahpundit brings us the rumor du jour, that outgoing New Mexico governor Bill Richardson may be on deck to replace Secretary of State Clinton:

This is one of those rumors, I think, that starts hopping simply because it makes sense, not because there’s any hard evidence to support it. Although there is plenty of circumstantial evidence: Richardson was just in Pyongyang to sound out North Korea about its nuclear program; he was a leading candidate for SoS back in 2008 before Hillary got the job; he has foreign policy experience, having served as Clinton’s ambassador to the UN in the 1990s; his term as governor of New Mexico ends in a week; and, of course, there’s been lots of buzz lately about The One shaking up his staff, with Axelrod and Bob Gates sure to depart this year and Gibbs likely to go too. Hillary and Gates also work famously well together, so maybe Obama’s thinking that if he’s leaving soon, it’s best to just replace the whole team and bring in a new SecDef and SecState all at once. And don’t forget that Richardson threw Obama a major bone by endorsing him in March 2008, a betrayal that stunned Team Clinton. The One owes him.

AP then covers the politics of the situation with his usual perspicacity; be sure to read his post. To my mind, it wouldn’t be an unreasonable change, in the context of this administration and the people involved: Hillary’s been giving signals that she wants to retire, and Richardson is more of a dove, making him more in tune with The One’s foreign policy instincts.

But Richardson has another qualification for the Cabinet besides being owed by Obama and a foreign policy softy — corruption. In 2008-09, Governor Richardson was under federal investigation in a pay-to-play scheme, as Michelle Malkin detailed in her Culture of Corruption:

The feds had been digging into a nationwide web of favor-trading between financial firms and politicians overseeing local government bond markets. CDR was tied to a doomed bond deal in Alabama which, according to Bloomberg News, threatened to cause the biggest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history. CDR raked in nearly $1.5 million in fees from a New Mexico state financial agency after donating more than $100,000 to Richardson’s efforts to register Hispanic and American Indian voters and to pay for expenses at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, the news service reported. The state agency that awarded the money consisted of five Richardson appointees and five members of his gubernatorial cabinet. CDR made contributions both shortly before and after securing consultant work with the state of New Mexico. CDR’s president also contributed $29,000 to Obama’s presidential campaign.

As Malkin shows, the incoming Obama administration knew all about the investigation, but still nominated Richardson to be Secretary of Commerce. It took over a month before they finally tossed him under the proverbial bus.

Oh, and the investigation? The Justice Department dropped it in August,2009:

The decision not to pursue indictments was made by top Justice Department officials, according to a person familiar with the investigation, who asked not to be identified because federal officials had not disclosed results of the probe.

“It’s over. There’s nothing. It was killed in Washington,” the person told The Associated Press.

Now, who was the Attorney General when this decision was made? Oh, yeah

If Richardson does replace Clinton, he’ll fit right in.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


What’s Russian for “Buyer Beware?”

December 26, 2010

The Russians have agreed to purchase two amphibious warships from France:

After a long hesitation and arduous negotiations, Russia has decided to buy at least two of France’s advanced Mistral-class amphibious warships in an unprecedented military deal between Moscow and the West, the two nations said Friday.

The multimillion-dollar sale, announced jointly by the Elysee Palace and the Kremlin, marks the first time in modern history that Russia has made such a major defense acquisition abroad, illuminating a fast-evolving relationship with former Cold War enemies. The swift changes were dramatized at last month’s NATO summit in Lisbon, when President Dmitry Medvedev agreed to work with NATO on ways to cooperate with the U.S.-led alliance in erecting a missile defense system for Europe.

The Mistral sale, whose financial terms were not disclosed, also signaled a triumph for French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s relentless salesmanship and a boost for France’s sagging defense industry and 10 percent unemployment rate. It will, the Elysee declaration noted, provide the equivalent of 5 million hours of work over four years for 1,000 qualified French employees at the STX shipyards at St. Nazaire on the Atlantic Coast. And it might lead to the purchase of two more vessels.

“Presidents Medvedev and Sarkozy hail the concretization of this unprecedented cooperation, which will benefit industry and employment in our two countries, and which illustrates the will and capacity in France and Russia to develop large-scale partnerships in all areas, including defense and security,” the Elysee said.

Dear President Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin: You may want to rethink that deal.

More seriously, the article notes the strenuous objections of the nation of Georgia, parts of which were recently ripped away and occupied by the new Czars, and also objections from Republicans in Congress. Not surprisingly, the Obama administration has been silent. Still hitting that reset button, I guess.

To be honest, though, I doubt we could have done much to stop the sale without putting a serious strain on our relationship (such as it is) with France; they have a problem with high unemployment, too, and have a national interest in maintaining a naval shipbuilding industry.

Whether the ships they build work or not is another matter…

*To answer the question in the subject: Покупатель Остерегайтесь

via Gabriel Malor on Twitter


They stand against civilization itself

December 26, 2010

Such brave jihadis, using a woman to attack innocent people — refugees waiting for food:

A female Taliban suicide bomber killed 42 Pakistani civilians in an attack at a World Food Program ration distribution point in Pakistan’s tribal agency of Bajaur.

The female suicide bomber detonated her vest in the midst of a crowd of more than 300 people waiting at a checkpoint outside for handouts from the World Food Program in Khar, the main town in Bajaur. Those waiting for food were among the internally displaced people who fled the fighting between the military and the Taliban over the past three years.

Pakistani officials said that 42 people were killed and 72 more were wounded, some critically.

(…)

In the pamphlets, the Taliban “threatened the people, particularly the government employees and security forces, not to support the agenda of the US and its allies,” The News reported. “The militants said that they would continue their ‘jihad’ against the US and its supporters. They also urged the Taliban fighters not to surrender to the government and warned them and security forces of stern action.”

Emphasis added.

Tell me again that this isn’t a religious war, that its “root causes” are instead found in poverty, a lack of education, Western colonialism, or any of a dozen other leftist shibboleths… Anything except what the barbarians say it is: a war against the non-Islamic, against Western civilization and its values.

Maybe ought to listen to what they’re telling us, instead.


Barney Frank: “It’s not my job to know what I’m doing” or something

December 26, 2010

Unbelievable.

Congressman Bawney Fwank (D-MA) says it’s not his job to know whether a law he votes on is constitutional or not — that’s the Supreme Court’s job, silly!

In the next Congress, Republicans will require every bill to cite its specific constitutional authority, a reminder to color inside the lines drawn long ago by the Founding Fathers.

The rule is a mostly symbolic overture to the Tea Party, for which an animating cause was that much of the congressional agenda over the last two years, including the president’s health care law and the bailouts for Wall Street, has been unconstitutional.

But some House Democrats are steamed at the charge their agenda has gone beyond Congress’s constitutional authorities.

“It’s an air kiss they’re blowing to the Tea Party,” said Massachusetts Democrat Rep. Barney Frank about the rule. “Anything we’re doing that’s unconstitutional will be thrown out in court. Some of them interpret the constitution very differently, but no, that will not be a problem.”

In other words, “anything I’m do is going to be checked by those guys, so why should I bother to understand the driver’s manual?  Just because I have the keys? Oh, please.”

Bawney, there’s a big difference between accepting judicial review and just throwing up your hands and saying it’s not your danged problem. In fact, it is your danged problem, like it or not. Allow me to remind you of your oath of office — you know, that thing you recited between accepting fat envelopes from lobbyists:

“I, (name of Member), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign or domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

Those highlighted parts are there for your benefit, Bawney. It’s a fair bet that carrying out your oath means understanding the document you swear to protect and defend. You might try it sometime, and try less of the arrogant jackass routine.

Be sure to read the whole article, folks. It’s just chock-full of charming quotes like that from “Representative” Fwank’s fellow oligarchs Democratic colleagues.

BY THE WAY: I have a question for the voters of the 4th congressional district of Massachusetts. What were you thinking? How in God’s name could you people ever choose that spiteful, arrogant, contemptible toad over Sean Bielat last month? Enlighten me, please; I’m really at a loss here.

h/t Jennifer Rubin via Gay Patriot

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Merry Christmas, Global-Warming Cultists!

December 25, 2010

Here’s my present to you: research showing that CO2 levels in the atmosphere are consistent with the warming and cooling of the oceans, with about a 250-year lag:

We find that the ~250-year lag time is consistent. CO2 levels peaked 250 years after the Medieval Warm Period peaked and the Little Ice Age cooling began and CO2 bottomed out 240 years after the trough of the Little Ice Age. In a fashion similar to the glacial/interglacial lags in the ice cores, the plant stomata data indicate that CO2 has lagged behind temperature changes by about 250 years over the last millennium. The rise in CO2 that began in 1860 is most likely the result of warming oceans degassing.

Be sure to click through for all the pretty charts and analysis.

See? Aren’t I nice to you? 

via Heliogenic Climate Change


For the newly laid-off Congresscritter

December 25, 2010

Ever concerned about the less-fortunate among us this Christmas season, Iowahawk has prepared a guide to unemployment and job-hunting for representatives, senators, and their staff who were so rudely turfed out by those ungrateful wretches back home last month. Here’s an excerpt:

Step 1: Assess Your Skills and Competencies

The road to your new non-Washington career begins with an inventory of your personal strengths and competencies. Read the critical skill list below, and circle the ones that you possess.

  • Telling other people what to do
  • Demanding money
  • Peddling influence
  • Talking loudly over others
  • Condescension / arrogance
  • Threatening, browbeating, arguing
  • Narcissism
  • Evading responsibility
  • Spin control

As a former Washington professional, you probably circled four or more of the above. Yes, there are some private sector industries where these skills are valued – such as journalism, bill collection, professional wrestling, higher education, and carnival barking. Unfortunately, these are all declining industries with low wages and/or fierce job competition. In order to maintain your standard of living, you will probably have to seek employment in other industries where you will find surprisingly little demand for your skills.

FAQs (frequently asked questions)

Instead of seeking a job, what if I decided to leverage my congressional skills in my own business?

While entrepreneurship can sometimes be very lucrative, it is a good idea to check with law enforcement officials. Under some federal and local statutes your new business may be interpreted as organized crime.

Visit Iowahawk, print this handy-dandy guide, and pass it along to your soon-to-be-former legislator or one of his (probably coked-up and weeping) staffers.

And then laugh.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Merry Christmas, one and all

December 25, 2010

Santa and I wish you a very happy day.


Russians make RINO, squish, aisle-crossers look like chumps

December 24, 2010

Because they ARE chumps. For weeks during this recent lame-duck session of Congress, the White House, Democratic senators, and the liberal media were telling us that the latest START arms-reduction treaty with the Russians had to be  approved now, in spite of serious, legitimate concerns. It absolutely could not wait until the new Senate was seated with new members who would actually reflect the will of the voters as expressed in the recent election. Nope, it had to be done now, or the universe would implode… or something.

So they finally found some “bipartisan” Republicans and ratified it.

And now the Russians say that, gosh, they won’t be able to get it done on their end until next year:

Russian lawmakers gave preliminary approval on Christmas Eve to the so-called New START treaty with a vote in the lower house of parliament. But Konstantin Kosachev, head of the State Duma’s foreign affairs committee, said it would take until next month “at the earliest” for the treaty to receive its three required readings and get a final vote. Lawmakers’ vacation lasts until Jan. 11.

The assessment seems to put the brakes on the document President Obama called a top priority as he whipped up the Republican votes needed to pass it before the end of the lame-duck session. Vice Adm. Jerry Miller said the Russians appear to be having some fun at U.S. expense.

So, explain to me again, Senators Lugar, Alexander, Bennett, Brown, Cochran, Collins, Corker, Isakson, Johanns, Murkowski, Snowe, and Voinovich: what was the big rush? Couldn’t you have waited for a Senate that had an actual mandate from the people to do more than minimal government business? And do you hear the chuckles coming from Moscow? How does it feel knowing you’ve been played — again?

Idiots.

LINKS: Power Line calls the Republicans listed above Obama’s useful idiots. Jennifer Rubin, who’s been critical of the treaty, points out that, inter alia, we did get something to protect missile defense. The Russian press respectfully disagrees. Legal Insurrection wonders if Republicans will ever learn. Ace of Spades thinks Putin “Pwned” Obama, again.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


A vote for Sister Toldjah is a vote for America

December 24, 2010

Vote early, vote often

To paraphrase the old typing exercise, “Now is the time for all good readers to come to the aid of their blog.” Gay Patriot (a great site, highly recommended) is holding their annual vote for Grande Conservative Blogress Diva for 2011, and my blog-buddy Sister Toldjah is one of the nominees!

The short list includes such worthies as Michelle Malkin, Fausta, and Tammy Bruce, but we know there can be only one*.

You can vote once daily through December 31st, so get cracking. I want to be able to wake up New Year’s Day and say “Toldjah so!” to the rest.

*(Fortunately, this does not require a duel to the death atop Silvercup Studios.)


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