The Sociopath: Ben Howe’s documentary on Donald Trump. You need to watch this.

November 4, 2016

For those who haven’t voted yet, but who are leaning Trump and may still be open to argument. I’ll let the video and its “About” text speak for itself:

He’s been called an impostor, a fraud, a fake. A charlatan. His own ghostwriter for the book “The Art of the Deal” called him a sociopath. There are many words that describe Donald Trump, and there are just as many words that don’t describe him: Conservative. Decent. Serious. Presidential.

Donald Trump has spearheaded one of the most divisive campaigns in modern politics and, in the eyes of many in his own party, is unfit to hold the highest office in the land.

But when the dust settles, whether he wins or loses, how will his campaign for the presidency be remembered? As an insurgency? Is it the story of someone “who fights” taking on power while taking power? Or will it be a hostile takeover from an invader that played out on national television as sane people watched and despaired? Will Trump be remember as the head of a movement, or the head of a snake? Or even as the snake-oil salesman and crony who hoodwinked millions?

And what of those who resisted? History will remember the resistance, but it remains to be seen if that will be positively or negatively.

But perhaps most importantly of all, will the people who support him ever get a clear picture of who he REALLY is?

“The Sociopath”, a film by Ben Howe, will show you not only who this man is, but more importantly, how he got to where he is, who supported him in doing so, and what it could mean for the future of the nation if he is elected.

I remain #NeverTrump and #NeverHillary.

via Andrea Ruth on Facebook


Sunday Not Quite A Book Review: “The Cultural Revolution: a people’s history 1962-1976”

July 3, 2016

Book Cover Dikotter Cultural Revolution

Since I haven’t been posting much of late, I thought a good way to get back into the swing of things would be to revive the Sunday Book Review series. Great idea!

Trouble is, the book I read is one that I can’t get a handle on the right approach to reviewing it. smiley d'oh! smiley headbang wall

The topic is so large and so complex that I’m left with just one thing to say: if you are ever tempted by the idea that things would be better if we just gave government all the power it wanted, read Frank Dikotter’s “The Cultural Revolution: a people’s history, 1962-1976”. That should slap some sense into you.

The book tells the story of bloody turmoil China was thrown into for over a decade because of the paranoia and whims of one all-powerful man, Mao Zedong. Setting faction against faction, even against his own Communist Party, Mao threw China into such chaos that at times it seemed a second civil war might result — and in some locales, it did.

Fearing that his “comrades” would sideline or even depose him for his horrific errors in the 1950s, worried that a Khrushchev waited in the wings to bring ideological revisionism and a denunciation of Mao’s legacy as Khrushchev did to Stalin in his 1956 “Secret Speech,” Mao and his allies waged war against enemies often made up wholly in Mao’s mind.

The price, of course, was paid by the people. Whether looking for “capitalist roaders,” “revisionists,” members of various “anti-Party cliques” and agents of foreign powers lurking within the Party itself, or merely people of “bad class background” (for example, former landowners under the old regime and their relations), enemies weren’t just found among a few rivals to Mao. Dikotter’s book tells in appalling detail how ordinary Chinese had to suffer because of Mao’s whims: prison camps, “reeducation” centers, thousands of city residents exiled to the country with no relevant skills and yet expected to survive — and never return to the city. People humiliated, driven to suicide or beaten to death by teenaged “Red Guards.” Knowledge, learning, and arts declared worthless, even evil, if they didn’t conform to “Mao Zedong Thought” and serve the class struggle. The horror stories of Lovecraft and King are nothing compared to what really happened in China in the 1960s.

Over and over, we’re treated moments of madness, but also shown how people resisted, or at least tried to survive. When Mao’s insane economics made even basic goods almost impossible to get, many set up secret factories and trade routes, reestablishing an underground capitalism in Communism’s heartland. Secret book clubs meeting to share a copy of forbidden Western literature. Playing Classical music on old phonographs in a closet, hoping no one would hear and denounce you to the authorities.

It’s said that “power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” China in the Cultural Revolution is a glaring example of this, and Frank Dikotter’s “The Cultural Revolution: a people’s history, 1962-1976” should be part of any “scared straight” program for anyone tempted by statism.

Highly recommended.

PS: “The Cultural Revolution: a people’s history, 1962-1976” is available in hardcover and Kindle format. I’m happy to say the Kindle book was well-formatted and free of any errors as I recall. Fair disclosure, I get a few cents from purchases made through my links.


Bookshelf update – The Cultural Revolution: A People’s History, 1962-1976

May 29, 2016

Renaissance scholar astrologer

I’ve updated the “What I’m reading” widget to the right to reflect the latest item on the Public Secrets lectern, Frank Dikötter’s  “The Cultural Revolution: A People’s History, 1962-1976”.

Book Cover Dikotter Cultural Revolution

 

I’m only a few chapters into it, so far, but it seems to be another proof of something I’ve long believed: that Human history produces far more horror than any story by King or Lovecraft. The Cultural  Revolution, like so many other Leftist attempts to remake humanity –the French Revolution during “the Terror,” Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy (2), the USSR, Pol Pot’s Cambodia, Cuba, North Korea– shows how dangerous it is to let one person, one group, or government in general to have too much power.

The Cultural Revolution is available in both Kindle (1) and hardcover formats.

PS: Why, yes. This is a shameless bit of shilling on my part. I like getting the occasional gift certificate that comes from people buying stuff via my link. But I still think it’s a good book.

Footnote:
(1) I’m happy to say I’ve found no typos or formatting errors, so far. These are all too common in Kindle e-books.
(2) Yes, Fascism and Nazism, two variations on statism, are products of the Left.


#ConArtist #NeverTrump This is what you’re voting for

February 28, 2016
Approved by Juan Peron!

Donald J. Trump — approved by Juan Peron!

Of all the strange things that have been a part of the 2016 presidential campaign –experienced well-regarded Republican governors turned away, the leading Democrat under federal investigation and her chief rival is a leftover Socialist from the 60s, the media’s blatant bias– perhaps what’s gobsmacked me the most is the rise of Donald Trump.

This started as a year when, of the 16-17 Republican candidates that started the race, 8-10 could make a credible case for their nomination, and several were outstanding. At the time, I thought this was the strongest field to come along in decades and that we were more than able to take on a very weak candidate in Hillary Clinton.

Silly me. I didn’t reckon with a significant portion of the party preferring a blowhard bully with a demonstrable record of supporting progressive positions, screwing American workers, advocating tyranny (1), and having dealings with questionable characters of the organized crime sort.

Let’s take a look at the leading candidate of the nation’s “conservative” party, shall we?

Trump refuses to release his tax returns. Ted Cruz has speculated that’s because they will show Trump has organized crime ties. There is reason to believe he does, including with the Russian Mob.

Just the kind of inspiring figure we want in the White House, right?

He is also content to take praise and endorsements from White supremacists and former Klan leaders. Well more than half of the posts he retweets on Twitter are from White supremacists. After being endorsed by former Klan leader David Duke , Trump has repeatedly refused to repudiate this endorsement or denounce the Klan.

Just the person to repair all the damage Obama has done to race relations in this country, right?

And this fake who pretends to be tough on illegal immigration and spouts inane plans to stop it, who claims he’s the only guy looking out for the American worker, in reality hires foreign workers to do jobs Americans are quite willing to do. Just ask the Polish laborers imported to New York to build Trump Tower. The ones he ripped off. Or the Floridians who couldn’t get jobs are Trump’s Mar a Lago resort because he hired foreign workers on the false claim that no Americans were available to do the job.

This is the guy you just endorsed, Senator Sessions? Kind of makes a mockery of your claim to be an immigration hawk concerned about American jobs, right?

There’s so much more: these are just the items I ran across today. You almost can’t do any research without stumbling across even more appalling stories.

Finally Senators Rubio and Cruz are attacking him where it hurts –his overwhelming ego– and it’s getting to him. We can only hope it’s not too late to persuade those who haven’t sold their souls to him. This emotionally unstable would-be American Peron should never, ever, reach the nomination or, God help us, the presidency.

Never Trump.

Footnote:
1) What else can you say about a guy who praises China for the way it handled Tiananmen Square? Maybe he and Tom Friedman should become roomies.

 


North Korea: more sudden deaths, totally coincidental

January 5, 2016
"You are too short! banished!"

“Likes long walks on the beach and unusual executions.”

I mean, look. Two ex-pat North Korean doctors working in the same clinic die of simultaneous heart attacks after a night of drinking. What’s suspicious about that?

The doctors, An Hyong-chan, 56, and Chol Ri-mun, 50, died in the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh, late on Friday or early on Saturday after suffering heart attacks. That they died at around the same time from the same cause and in the same location is just the beginning of the tale.

The men, who worked at a clinic that also served as their home in the city’s Tuol Kork district, reportedly died after their wives – also doctors – injected them with an unnamed drug to counteract the effects of an evening of heavy drinking.

The women grew concerned after their husbands developed fevers, abnormal heartbeats and weak pulses after the couples returned home from a night out with 10 other North Koreans, during which the two men had drunk “numerous cocktails”, according to the Phnom Penh Post.

The women told local police they had injected their husbands with “a medicine and a serum” to counteract the effects of the alcohol, and that the men died of heart attacks about an hour later, the newspaper said.

Note that the wives informed the embassy first, then –“hours later”– finally told the locals. Time enough for a clean-up crew and to get stories straight?

As The Guardian notes, this is far from the only mysterious death in which North Korea is part of the picture. One of Kim’s close advisers died in a car wreck just a few days ago. And the regime does have a habit of creatively executing those who somehow offend it. (1)

So, it’s possible it happened as described, but I see other, more likely scenarios:

The wives murdered their husbands on their own. Perhaps the men were abusive, or maybe they were cheating on their marriages, or the women wanted their men gone for other personal reasons. The wives call the embassy because that’s what’s expected of Norks overseas. North Korean officials show up, figure out the plot, and cover things up to prevent embarrassment to the regime and will administer “justice” on their own.

The wives were agents of the regime, willing or unwilling, and executed their husbands on State orders. “Why” is anyone’s guess, but Pyongyang has never been shy about having people killed. In this case, the embassy was called once the mission was completed, and they showed up to get all the details straight before the Cambodians can ask awkward questions. The women will be whisked away and never seen again. Case closed, too bad for the honored dead.

Either one is possible, though I think the last is most plausible.

But the truth? I doubt we’ll ever know.

Footnote:
(1) I was so sorry to learn that the story of Kim feeding his uncle alive to starving dogs was a hoax. Dude, I was counting on you!


From the farcical to the surreal: Putin endorses a grateful Trump

December 17, 2015
Fine as long as the mouth stays shut

Endorsed by dictators

When did I cross into Bizarro World?

Russia’s strongman took time out from bumping off political adversaries, putting his muscle in Iran’s service, and annexing other countries’ territory to praise GOP presidential hopeful Donald Trump as “an outstanding and talented personality.”

A grateful Trump reacted: “It is always a great honor to be so nicely complimented by a man so highly respected within his own country and beyond.”

So, the currently leading Republican candidate is honored to be endorsed by a man intimidating and dismembering the countries around him, having opponents and critics assassinated, and generally acting like a global thug.

Analyst Tom Nichols offered this apt analogy:

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I won’t go as far as Tom did in another tweet and call Trump a “traitor,” but I do think he is a contemptible buffoon — and a dangerous one, should he win the nomination and the presidency.

Are we sure Rod Serling didn’t introduce this story?


North Korea: Border Guards raided, purged for murdering Chinese?

August 29, 2015
Hungry?

Hungry?

If you’re Kim Jong Un, the Supreme Leader pudgy, alcoholic, and murderous dictator of North Korea, the world’s largest prison camp masquerading as a nation, the last thing you want to hear is that your soldiers have crossed the border into the territory of your one ally and murdered its citizens.

And when you do hear that, you bring the hammer down. Hard.

Scores of officers and rank-and-file soldiers from North Korea’s border guard unit have been rounded up and are under investigation by a special inspection team of the country’s Workers’ Party, following an incident earlier this year in which two of the guards crossed the border and killed two Chinese, sources inside the country said.

The team stormed the headquarters of the 25th brigade in the neighborhood of Yonbong 2 in Hyesan city of Yanggang province earlier this month, and arrested as many as 40 soldiers on the spot, said Hee-yun Doh, a representative of the Seoul-based Citizens’ Coalition for Human Rights of Abductees and North Korean Refugees, citing information from a local North Korean source.

Those arrested included the leader of the third platoon from the fourth company of second battalion and six staff sergeants, he said.

 

The head of the Border Guards was replaced after this incident (no word of him being executed in Kim’s usual creative manner), and three staff sergeants were quietly shot — pour encourager les autres, no doubt, for word inevitably got around. North Korea already had a problem with guards being open to bribery to let Koreans cross the Yalu to escape this hellhole (How bad do things have to be to make China look good? Shudder…); if they’re going around shooting people in China, too, well, that’s a problem of a whole other order of magnitude, as Beijing made very clear to Pyongyang.

But the reason they committed these murders should also worry Kim Jong Un:

It was not clear why the North Koreans crossed into the border area, but it is believed that they were trying to obtain food when they killed the two Chinese, according to reports.

In other words, the food situation in North Korea is so bad, Kim hasn’t enough to adequately feed the guys with guns, who are there to keep the rest of North Korea crushed underfoot.

Not good, from a North Korean dictator’s point of view.

Not that the Border Guards are likely to overthrow the government, but this shows Kim is starting to have to put the squeeze on the elites as there just isn’t enough food to go around. I’m willing to bet government officials allowed to live in Pyongyang get plenty, as well as the commanders of key military units and elite bodies of troops. But, if things get worse and reduced rations move (ahem) up the food chain, you can bet there will be grumbling among senior officers already worried about Kim’s predilection for executing people on a whim.

Hence the need to make an example, now.

Long ago, the Roman emperor Septimius Severus is reported to have told his sons, “Ignore everyone else, but take care of the Army.” He knew where the real power in Rome resided, and on whom the Emperor’s safety depended.

Kim, or at least his close advisers, likely knows that lesson, too, but whether he can do it is another question altogether.


North Korea: At this rate, Kim is going to run out of people to shoot

August 12, 2015
"So many to choose from!"

“So many to choose from! Let’s shoot them all!”

But, really, the man had criticized Kim’s reforestation policy. Some things just cannot be tolerated, you know:

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un reportedly ordered the execution of the country’s vice premier earlier this year, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported Wednesday.

Citing unnamed sources, Yonhap reported Choe Yong-gon, 63, was shot dead in May this year after expressing “discomfort” over Kim’s forestation policy.

In a statement carried by the agency, South Korea’s Unification Ministry said: “Choe has not been seen publicly for about … eight months since he was last witnessed in December last year at the ceremony to mark the third anniversary of the death of North’s former leader Kim Jong Il.

“The government is closely watching to see what might have happened to him.”

North Korea is suffering from a massive drought, and Kim evidently ordered tree-planting to prevent soil erosion, but it wasn’t going fast enough to suit him. Big surprise for Leftists: Lysenko not withstanding, biology will not bend to crude human will. I’m guessing the late Vice-Premier made the mistake of pointing to Psycho III Dear Leader II that his plan was a bit… “unrealistic.”

In North Korea, that’s a bad career move.

Meanwhile, I’m worried about Kim. No, really! He’s had people machine gunned, fed to wild dogs, executed by anti-aircraft gunfire, mortared to death… If he’s only having them shot, now, he may be losing his touch.


The real reason North Korea has mandatory voting

July 21, 2015
The only vote that counts.

The only vote that counts.

You might think it’s because the world’s largest prison camp masquerading as a nation thinks this is genuine democracy: after all, even though there’s just one candidate (Party-approved, natch) for each post, you can still vote your disapproval by putting your ballot in another box for “no” votes. But nobody does that, probably because of the obvious wisdom of the Party’s choices, guided as they are by Juche spirit and the wisdom of Kim Jong Un.

You might also be a bit more cynical and think it’s so they can boast a 99.7 percent turnout to prove how enthusiastic the people are about their People’s Democracy life in Hell.

But you’d be wrong. Per the CNN article, here’s the real reason the “mountain bandits” have compulsory voting:

The compulsory universal turnout, analysts and defectors say, serves another important purpose for the government.

The election acts as an unofficial census, allowing the government to discover who has defected or otherwise gone missing. And that spells big trouble, not only for the missing voter, but also for his or her family.

Get it? If you don’t vote, your family probably gets sent to Kim’s gulag.

President Obama, who has himself shown authoritarian tendencies, has expressed interest in mandatory voting.

Let’s not encourage him, okay? (1)

Footnote:
(1) To the humorless Left — I kid! I kid! Maybe.


North Korea: Kim Jong-Un promotes poor fool to admiral

July 12, 2015
"I've got some bad news, boss..."

“Wait. We need another new defense minister??”

Considering the last holder of the office was executed by anti-aircraft gun for the crime of lèse-majesté (1), you have to wonder how thrilled the new guy was to get the big news:

A press release from North Korean state media, announcing a senior-level military meeting, called Pak Yong Sik the country’s defense minister.

This is the first time North Korea has publicly stated that Pak was serving in that role.

Hyon Yong Chol, the country’s last defense minister, was last mentioned by state media on April 29.

Chol was killed by fire from an anti-aircraft gun at a military school in front of hundreds of people in Pyongyang around April 30, the South Korean Intelligence Service (NIS) reportedly told members of its parliament.

The article notes that General Hyon might still be alive, meaning the story of the anti-aircraft gun was just Kim playing with our minds. Honestly, I kind of doubt that.

Regardless, I’d suggest to the new defense minister that he take No Doz before all meetings.

PS: Oh, come on. How many of you wouldn’t read that news and think immediately of Admiral Ozzel?

Footnote:
(1) Hey, the man fell asleep in the presence of his god. Some things cannot be tolerated.


Pudgy, nuclear-armed dictator shoots another official. Because he can.

July 8, 2015
"You are too short! banished!"

“You let my turtles die? You die!”

You think this guy knew the game was up the moment he saw Kim Jong Un’s first frown?

The manager of a terrapin farm who incurred the wrath of Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, has been executed.

State-run media released pictures in mid-May of a clearly furious Mr Kim berating officials of the Taedonggang Terrapin Farm after the dictator arrived to provide “field guidance”.

KCNA reported that the farm for breeding terrapins had been set up on the orders of Kim Jong-il, the father of the present ruler of North Korea, but all the baby terrapins in the tanks died.

The officials tried to explain that a lack of electricity meant that water could not be pumped into the tanks, while there were also shortages of feed for the terrapins.

Mr Kim was additionally outraged that part of the farm had not been set aside to “educate employees in the revolutionary history” of Kim Jong-il, KCNA reported.

The dictator dismissed the officials’ explanations, saying that “only sighs of defeatists come from units” that fail to “uphold and glorify the leadership exploits of the great leaders and the party”.

He added that their excuses about problems with water, electrical supplies and equipment were “nonsensical complaints”, the Daily NK web site reported.

Sources in Pyongyang told NK News that the manager of the terrapin farm was shot dead shortly after Mr Kim’s visit.

Pour encourager les autres, dontcha know?

And, please. A lack of electricity to provide fresh water to creatures that live in water, and a lack of feed for them? Did he really expect that to be a sufficient reason to let them die from polluted water and starvation? He was obviously a traitor and a counterrevolutionary South Korean-American Imperialist stooge. It’s a good thing Dear Leader Tiny Psycho III was there to ferret out his anti-terrapin sabotage!

Per the Telegraph article, is it any wonder that North Korean officials are starting to defect in large numbers? I’m only surprised no one’s drawn a pistol and shot this loon in an act of preemptive self-defense.

Via Rick Moran, who goes on to compare this lunatic regime to that in Tehran. The one we’re about to help get nuclear weapons, too.

I’ll be in my bunker in the Sierras.


Defector: North Korea testing chemical and biological weapons on… their own people.

July 6, 2015
Hope and Change?

The smiling face of evil.

I could sit here all day –a week, even– dreaming up horrible, lingering deaths for the North Korean ruling class.

And it still would be less than what they deserve:

A NORTH Korean scientist who defected to Finland has promised to expose the regime’s shocking practice of testing chemical weapons in its own citizens.

The biochemical weapons scientist, 47, managed to flee a North Korean research centre on the Chinese border on June 6 via the Philippines, a source from a North Korean human rights group told Yonhap news agency.

He reportedly took with him a storage device loaded with 15 gigabytes of information on the use of humans to test biological and chemical weapons in the North Korean laboratory he worked in. The data would shed light on the regime’s “inhumane tests”, the source told Yonhap.

“His ostensible reason for defection is that he felt sceptical about his research,” the source said.

The defector, known only by his surname Lee, is now expected to give testimony before the European Union parliament later this month.

“Sceptical” is an odd word, don’t you think? “Horrified,” “nauseated,” “outraged,” maybe. But “sceptical” implies thinking “Hmmm… I may be wrong, but, perhaps this isn’t a good idea.”

Then again, in North Korea, even skepticism (US spelling) is treason and can get you shot, so let us not doubt “Mr. Lee’s” bravery for being even “sceptical.”

Meanwhile, here’s just one example of what these human demons do:

Kwon Hyuk, a former head of security at North Korea’s infamous Camp 22, has described gas chambers where chemical experiments were conducted on prisoners.

Appearing on the BBC2 program This World in 2004, Hyuk said healthy prisoners were held inside glass chambers that were filled with gas while technicians observed their agonising deaths.

“I witnessed a whole family being tested on suffocating gas and dying in the gas chamber,” he said in the documentary.

“The parents, son and a daughter. The parents were vomiting and dying, but (until) the very last moment they tried to save kids by doing mouth-to-mouth breathing.

“At the time I felt that they thoroughly deserved such a death. Because all of us were led to believe that all the bad things that were happening to North Korea were their fault, that we were poor, divided and not making progress as a country.”

As I’ve said before, defector reports can be unreliable; there is a risk they will say what they think their benefactors want to hear in order to get good treatment. But, there are so many reports and they are all so similar that it is hard to discount them. “Mr. Lee” is the first I’ve heard of who claims to have brought with him hard data, not just stories. His testimony should be very interesting.

Let’s hope it hastens the end of the world’s largest prison camp masquerading as a nation, and that it leads to a condign punishment for its jailers.

Especially the pudgy guy at the top.


Shocker! Pudgy North Korean dictator executes another traitor to the State

July 2, 2015
"You are too short! banished!"

“No Starbucks? You die!!”

This time not a relative or a general, but the architect who designed the new Pyongyang airport:

North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un posed for one of his trademark glossy photo shoots in Pyongyang’s new airport this week – but a different story had unfolded behind the scenes.

Kim smiled as he posed next to chocolate fountains and espresso bars – but in in private was so furious at ‘defects’ that he had the airport’s designer killed.

Executions are common in North Korea, with senior officials being killed for offences as minor as watching South Korean soap operas.

Airport design chief Ma Won Chun disappeared late last year, and is thought to have been executed after Kim voiced his dissatisfaction with the airport, according to The Diplomat.

Chun was executed for ‘for corrupt practices and failure to follow orders.’

“Corrupt practices,” eh? TSA is lucky they don’t work for Kim…

No word on whether the unfortunate designer was killed by mortar fire, antiaircraft guns, flamethrower, or being fed to hungry dogs.

PS: I have to admit, given the long lines at LAX, the thought does have its appeal.


Syria: You know it’s bad when your allies have to execute your own officers

June 9, 2015
x

Soon to be an ex-dictator

Via Anne Bayefsky:

Iranian commanders overseeing the Assad regime’s fighting efforts on the frontlines south of Idlib have reportedly executed three Syrian army officers.

London-based Al-Quds al-Arabi said that the three officers were Sunnis who were among the regime troops that withdrew from the Mahmbel and Bsanqoul checkpoints following rebel advances in the southern Idlib province area on Saturday.

The three officers, who were also accompanied by several soldiers, were accused deserting their duty and “betraying the homeland,” the daily reported Sunday.

According to the report, none of the other Syrian officers or soldiers present at the time were able to prevent the execution as “officers responsible for military operations in the Jourin area are under the command of Iranian officers.”

A Free Syrian Army (FSA) commander told the paper that “the regime has handed over the operations room to Iranian officers and leadership.”

“The recent execution has caused a state of fear and terror among remaining regime troops,” the FSA commander added, saying he expected “more defections and more field executions.”

“There are still Sunni soldiers and officers bearing arms in the ranks of the regime’s army who will receive humiliating treatment during the coming period.”

Activists in the Latakia region also spoke to the paper about the impact the Iranian takeover of the operations room has had on morale among regime troops.

“Morale is very low among regime soldiers; in fact, it has become non-existent since the Iranian officers took over the operations room,” according to an activist identifying himself as Abu Said.

“Syrian officers, among them Alawites, have become secondary members, whose tasks can sometimes be reduced to handing out tea and coffee.”

Assad’s position is crumbling, and the only thing keeping him afloat is Iranian aid. And that means the Iranians are the senior partners and call the shots. And shoot people, even their “allies.”  One reason Iran is taking this hard line, aside from being refugees from a medieval lunatic asylum, is that they cannot afford to lose Syria, which gives them a strategic foothold in the Levant and the Eastern Mediterranean, and also serves as a conduit through which to send money and supplies to their Hizbullah cats-paws in Lebanon. Wouldn’t want to lose that opportunity to strike at the Zionist Entity (1), would we?

Meanwhile, Assad can surely escape; dictators like him usually have a few million dollars stashed in Europe and a jet on standby somewhere close. But, for his minions left behind? They’d better hope the Iranians like the tea and coffee they serve.

Footnote:
(1) That’s Israel, for those lacking an Islamic-Fascist to English dictionary.


Hillary Clinton knows the nicest people

June 1, 2015
Above the rules.

“Who? Never heard of him.”

A guy who would intimidate women who accused Bill Clinton of “sexual harassment” (1) and who made a hobby of impersonating US agents:

And you thought Sidney Blumenthal was shady.

Few people have heard of Cody Shearer, the unsanctioned diplomat, private eye, and Clinton flunky whose name surfaced in connection with the so-called intelligence reports Sidney Blumenthal was channeling to Hillary Clinton during her time at the State Department. But this shadowy fixture of the Clinton machine was everywhere in the 1990s — including war-torn Bosnia, where he became the subject of a State Department investigation after he represented himself as an agent of the U.S. government and took cash from a genocidal warlord.

Now evidence suggests Shearer, working with his partner Blumenthal, was up to something similar during the 2011 revolution in Libya. And like in the 1990s, the Clintons were lurking on the margins. Much of the intelligence contained in memos fed to the Clinton State Department by Blumenthal was not just self-serving — it was provided by someone with a history of misleading foreign sources, misrepresenting himself as an agent of the U.S. government, and creating trouble for both himself and the United States abroad.

So, a woman who ran her own private email server through which she conducted official government business and who ran her own off-the-books diplomatic and intelligence network now thinks she should be President of the United States… oooh-kay.

I’m telling you, a Hillary Clinton Oval Office would be a thing  of beauty: a paranoid law-breaking operation that would make Nixon’s “plumbers” look like Boy Scouts.

Perhaps we should start getting the impeachment papers together now, just in case.

Footnote:
(1) What a less deferential but more honest person would call “assault” or even “rape.”


And… North Korea creatively executes another general

May 13, 2015
"I've got some bad news, boss..."

“The dogs aren’t hungry? OK, get the AA squad!”

I’m beginning to think this is Kim Jong Un’s hobby: some people play Chess or collect stamps, he has generals who annoy him shot:

North Korea has publicly executed the country’s defense minister after the regime accused him of treason, according to South Korean news agency Yonhap.

Hyon Yong Chol was killed by firing squad using an anti-aircraft gun at a military school in front of hundreds of people in Pyongyang around April 30, the agency reported, citing a media briefing by the National Intelligence Service at its headquarters in Seoul.

Hyon “was purged for lese majeste” because he was seen “dozing off” during a military event and “did not carry out Kim’s instructions,” the agency said. It wasn’t clear what instructions Hyon failed to carry out.

With “an anti-aircraft gun.” (pause) (imagines) The guy was probably obliterated by the first round.

Like I said, I’m beginning to think this is not just a way for Kim to make sure the army doesn’t even think of trying to overthrow him (1), but that this is his recreation. I mean, why else think of so many bizarre ways to kill someone when a bullet to the head will do, unless you think it’s entertaining? We’ve seen execution by mortar, by flamethrower, and by being thrown to the dogs. Execution by machine gun seems almost pedestrian by comparison, unless one is wasting an ex-girlfriend in the process.

Not that I feel all that sorry for the late General Hyon. Let’s face it, he had prospered under a Stalinist tyranny that has to rank as one of worst in human history. He was, up until the moment of his arrest, one of the elite: he almost certainly enjoyed good food, a nice apartment or even a home, car and driver, and probably some graft privileges. He was an elite in a regime that runs the world’s largest prison camp masquerading as a nation, in which not only are thousands sent to horrid prison camps on the flimsiest of pretexts, but their families, too. Whole generations of people are born in those hellholes knowing nothing but a living Hell. And while I’m not familiar with Minister Hyon’s career, I wouldn’t be surprised he had denounced people a time or two along the way, nor that he dutifully cheered when someone else got the ax.

So, no, I don’t have much sympathy for the capo when the Godfather finally decides to whack him. Risks of the job and all that. But I do hope he had no young family members, who otherwise are likely on their way to the North Korean gulag.

Footnote:
(1) Yet again I have to wonder if some general or generals aren’t —very quietly and very privately— considering taking out Kim before he decides they need to meet the firing squad. With a “Dear Leader” this bloodthirsty, it would seem a necessity of survival.

 


And…. North Korea shoots another general

February 5, 2015
"I've got some bad news, boss..."

“Who said I was wrong?”

“Pour encourager les autres,” (1) I’m sure:

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un executed an army general last month in his latest purge of senior officials.

General Pyon In Son, one-time head of operations in the Korean People’s Army, was killed for expressing an opinion that differed to that of to MrKim’s, a South Korean official told reporters in Seoul on Wednesday, speaking on condition of anonymity. The official didn’t say what they disagreed on.

Mr Kim still mistrusts the military, the official said, adding that senior officers are growing increasingly uneasy. The “Supreme Leader” also removed Ma Won Chun, a National Defence Commission official overseeing construction design, from office in November for alleged corruption and a failure to follow orders.

Mr Kim has relied on purges to consolidate his grip on power since he took over North Korea, a country with a nuclear arms program and 1.2 million troops in 2011. After killing his uncle and one-time deputy Jang Song-thaek in 2013, he executed about 50 officials last year on charges ranging from graft to watching South Korean soap operas.

“The purge of Pyon sends a message that helps to discipline the military,” said Kim Yong Hyun, a professor of North Korean studies at Dongguk University in Seoul. “The execution is a symbol that will help tighten loyalty.”

Well, that’s one way to put it, I suppose, though I’m not sure it’s their loyalty that “tightens” at the possible consequences of saying something Psycho III Kim Jong Un doesn’t like.

This kind of capricious tyranny often contains the seeds of the tyrant’s downfall: not only might his subordinates get rid of him to save themselves (as the Romans did with Caligula and Domitian, among others), but no is going to give this guy the bad-but-necessary information every ruler needs in order to make good decisions. Instead it’s “Yes, Dear Leader” and taking notes on his every word, while hoping he doesn’t decide you annoy him. In a regime dependent on one (pudgy, alcoholic) man, that’s a recipe for disaster. And that includes his neighbors, should a nuclear-armed Lil Kim decide that now is a good time to settle the Korean War.

Meanwhile, one has to wonder how many high-ranking generals Kim can kill before one of them decides to shoot first.

Footnote:
(1) Admiral Byng could not be reached for comment.


Endorsed: Bar Obama from making his State of the Union address before Congress

November 21, 2014
The President who would be King

The President who would be King

Since it became apparent that President Obama was about to (and did, last night) usurp the legislature’s authority to write and amend our laws, Republicans and conservatives (and some liberals) have been bandying around several strategies to fight back: some form of defunding, censure, even impeachment.

Writing at Ace of Spades, Drew M. adds a symbolic but very powerful idea: do not let Obama give his State of the Union address before the joint houses of Congress.

There’s one idea I’d like to add that is in many ways symbolic but that would focus the nation on the seriousness of this problem, do not invite Obama to address a joint session of Congress to deliver the State of the Union address.

The Constitution simply requires that “He shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.” Nothing requires that he do so in person. The modern in person State of The Union dates back to Woodrow Wilson but Truman, Eisenhower and Nixon all gave written reports as was the custom from Thomas Jefferson to Wilson.

And Presidents don’t simply show up whenever they please to address the Congress, they must be formally invited. That’s where Boehner and McConnell can strike a blow for the legislature…simply don’t invite him.

Yesterday, Boehner said, “The president had said before that he’s not king and he’s not an emperor,” Boehner says. “But he’s sure acting like one.”

There’s a reason for the reference to the behavior of kings: it’s a part of our history, dating back at least to the crises that gave rise to the English Civil War. In 1642, King Charles I attempted to usurp the powers of the House of Commons by barging in with soldiers to arrest five members. In commemoration of this, the House of Commons slams the doors in the face of Black Rod when he comes to summon them to hear the Queen’s Speech. Nowadays, this is just a ceremonial tradition, a reminder of the Commons’ independence from the Crown.

It is also an echo of a very real crisis.

We are England’s heirs, and Congress is facing its own crisis with an arrogant, usurping Executive. Let Speaker Boehner and (soon to be) Majority Leader McConnell reach deep back into our history and, along with more substantive actions, assert the legislature’s rights as a co-equal branch of government. Refuse our modern King Charles the stage his ego so desperately needs (1).

It’s time to bar the doors.

via Gabriel Malor

Footnote:
(1) Come on, you know Obama’s ego is so brittle that this would drive him nuts. As a narcissist, he craves a stage from which to lecture his inferiors.


Video: Sen. Cruz Invokes Cicero’s Words Against President Obama’s Lawlessness

November 20, 2014

Well-played by Senator Cruz. This Classics fan nods in approval.

Nice Deb

Obamacaligula

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaking  Senate floor, Thursday, harkened back to Cicero’s famous warning to the citizens of Rome over 2,000 years ago. The Roman philosopher, Marcus Cicero, was advocating a return to a Republican form of government after the emperor Julius Caesar died. The words, as spoken by Cruz have special resonance today in respect to our current President’s lawlessness.

The text of the speech:

The words of Cicero powerfully relevant 2,077 years later. When, President Obama, do you mean to cease abusing our patience? How long is that madness of yours still to mock us? When is there to be an end to that unbridled audacity of yours swaggering about as it does now? Do not the nightly guards placed on the border, do not the watches posted throughout the city, does not the alarm of the people and the union of all good men and women, does…

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Krauthammer: “I’ve Waited Long Enough” Is Something A Banana Republic Leader Would Say

November 20, 2014

All Obama needed was the general’s uniform and the mirrorshade sunglasses.

Nice Deb

One of the more obnoxious things about Obama’s imperial decree on amnesty is the rationale he’s been using to go forward – which he has repeated over and over again and it didn’t sound any better the 10th time he (or one of his minions) said it..  Congress failed to pass “common-sense, comprehensive immigration reform” when Emperor Obama laid out his glorious principles for reform two years ago — and that’s why he must now act unilaterally.

That’s an obscene distortion of how our system of government works.

“The only rationale Obama is citing in doing this,” Krauthamer explained is “not lack of resources, it’s not a crisis, it’s not something new. As he said the system is broken, it has been for decades. It is one thing and one thing alone. ‘I’ve waited long enough.’ That’s what a caudillo says in a Banana Republic. ‘I waited long enough, and the…

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