Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Happy New Year

I am on vacation for the rest of the week. I'll resume blogging next week. Happy New Year.

Friday, December 25, 2009

From the Weekly Standard

Click on image to enlarge:

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Britain condemns Livni arrest warrant


As reported in The Sydney Morning Herald:

JERUSALEM: Britain has vowed to change laws that enabled a warrant for the arrest of the Israeli Opposition Leader, Tzipi Livni, on Monday.

The warrant was issued by a London court against Ms Livni on suspicion of war crimes committed during Operation Cast Lead, Israel's three-week offensive against against Hamas in Gaza that began on December 27 last year.

At the time of Operation Cast Lead, which occurred in the lead-up to general elections held in February, Ms Livni was Israel's caretaker foreign minister and also leader of the then governing Kadima party. The arrest warrant was issued at the request of lawyers representing a number of Palestinian rights organisations, but was rescinded immediately after it became apparent that Ms Livni was not actually in the country.

Ms Livni's office has confirmed that she was planning to visit London but had cancelled the trip due to ''scheduling problems''. According to a statement issued by Ms Livni's office, the British Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, expressed ''shock'' at the arrest warrant, and promised ''to work immediately to ensure that a similar occurrence would not happen in the future'' against Ms Livni or other Israeli leaders.

In a phone call to Ms Livni on Tuesday, Mr Miliband said he was appalled by the issuing of the warrant.

''It's not personal,'' Ms Livni was quoted telling him. ''It's about the entire state of Israel and our ability to go on working together against common threats,'' she said.

Speaking on Tuesday at the Institute for Security Studies in Tel Aviv, Ms Livni said she regretted none of the decisions made during Operation Cast Lead. ''I would take the same decisions, each and every one,'' she said.

The arrest warrant has provoked a furious reaction from Israeli Government officials, who have demanded British law be changed.

Mr Miliband reportedly told his Israeli counterpart, Avigdor Lieberman, that the warrant was ''completely unacceptable'' and stressed the importance of the relationship between the two countries.

Britain's ambassador to Israel, Tom Phillips, was given a severe dressing down by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's national security adviser Uzi Arad, who claimed the arrest warrant was ''an immoral act aimed against Israel's right to self-defence''.

Mr Netanyahu's office also released a statement utterly rejecting ''the absurdity that is happening in Great Britain''. ''We will not agree to a situation in which [former prime minister] Ehud Olmert, [Defence Minister] Ehud Barak, and Tzipi Livni will be summoned to the bench.''

Earlier this year, other Israeli officials including the Vice Prime Minister, Moshe Yaalon, and Shin Bet chief, Avi Dichter, cancelled visits to Britain because of the threat of arrest.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

CLIMATE CHANGE IS NATURAL: 100 REASONS WHY

HERE are the 100 reasons, released in a dossier issued by the European Foundation, why climate change is natural and not man-made:

1) There is “no real scientific proof” that the current warming is caused by the rise of greenhouse gases from man’s activity.

2) Man-made carbon dioxide emissions throughout human history constitute less than 0.00022 percent of the total naturally emitted from the mantle of the earth during geological history.

3) Warmer periods of the Earth’s history came around 800 years before rises in CO2 levels.

4) After World War II, there was a huge surge in recorded CO2 emissions but global temperatures fell for four decades after 1940.

5) Throughout the Earth’s history, temperatures have often been warmer than now and CO2 levels have often been higher – more than ten times as high.

6) Significant changes in climate have continually occurred throughout geologic time.

7) The 0.7C increase in the average global temperature over the last hundred years is entirely consistent with well-established, long-term, natural climate trends.

8) The IPCC theory is driven by just 60 scientists and favourable reviewers not the 4,000 usually cited.

9) Leaked e-mails from British climate scientists – in a scandal known as “Climate-gate” - suggest that that has been manipulated to exaggerate global warming

10) A large body of scientific research suggests that the sun is responsible for the greater share of climate change during the past hundred years.

11) Politicians and activiists claim rising sea levels are a direct cause of global warming but sea levels rates have been increasing steadily since the last ice age 10,000 ago

12) Philip Stott, Emeritus Professor of Biogeography at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London says climate change is too complicated to be caused by just one factor, whether CO2 or clouds

13) Peter Lilley MP said last month that “fewer people in Britain than in any other country believe in the importance of global warming. That is despite the fact that our Government and our political class—predominantly—are more committed to it than their counterparts in any other country in the world”.

14) In pursuit of the global warming rhetoric, wind farms will do very little to nothing to reduce CO2 emissions

15) Professor Plimer, Professor of Geology and Earth Sciences at the University of Adelaide, stated that the idea of taking a single trace gas in the atmosphere, accusing it and finding it guilty of total responsibility for climate change, is an “absurdity”

16) A Harvard University astrophysicist and geophysicist, Willie Soon, said he is “embarrassed and puzzled” by the shallow science in papers that support the proposition that the earth faces a climate crisis caused by global warming.

17) The science of what determines the earth’s temperature is in fact far from settled or understood.

18) Despite activist concerns over CO2 levels, CO2 is a minor greenhouse gas, unlike water vapour which is tied to climate concerns, and which we can’t even pretend to control

19) A petition by scientists trying to tell the world that the political and media portrayal of global warming is false was put forward in the Heidelberg Appeal in 1992. Today, more than 4,000 signatories, including 72 Nobel Prize winners, from 106 countries have signed it.

20) It is claimed the average global temperature increased at a dangerously fast rate in the 20th century but the recent rate of average global temperature rise has been between 1 and 2 degrees C per century - within natural rates

21) Professor Zbigniew Jaworowski, Chairman of the Scientific Council of the Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection in Warsaw, Poland says the earth’s temperature has more to do with cloud cover and water vapor than CO2 concentration in the atmosphere.

22) There is strong evidence from solar studies which suggests that the Earth’s current temperature stasis will be followed by climatic cooling over the next few decades

23) It is myth that receding glaciers are proof of global warming as glaciers have been receding and growing cyclically for many centuries

24) It is a falsehood that the earth’s poles are warming because that is natural variation and while the western Arctic may be getting somewhat warmer we also see that the Eastern Arctic and Greenland are getting colder

25) The IPCC claims climate driven “impacts on biodiversity are significant and of key relevance” but those claims are simply not supported by scientific research

26) The IPCC threat of climate change to the world’s species does not make sense as wild species are at least one million years old, which means they have all been through hundreds of climate cycles

27) Research goes strongly against claims that CO2-induced global warming would cause catastrophic disintegration of the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets.

28) Despite activist concerns over CO2 levels, rising CO2 levels are our best hope of raising crop yields to feed an ever-growing population

29) The biggest climate change ever experienced on earth took place around 700 million years ago

30) The slight increase in temperature which has been observed since 1900 is entirely consistent with well-established, long-term natural climate cycles

31) Despite activist concerns over CO2 levels, rising CO2 levels of some so-called “greenhouse gases” may be contributing to higher oxygen levels and global cooling, not warming

32) Accurate satellite, balloon and mountain top observations made over the last three decades have not shown any significant change in the long term rate of increase in global temperatures

33) Today’s CO2 concentration of around 385 ppm is very low compared to most of the earth’s history – we actually live in a carbon-deficient atmosphere

34) It is a myth that CO2 is the most common greenhouse gas because greenhouse gases form about 3% of the atmosphere by volume, and CO2 constitutes about 0.037% of the atmosphere

35) It is a myth that computer models verify that CO2 increases will cause significant global warming because computer models can be made to “verify” anything

36) There is no scientific or statistical evidence whatsoever that global warming will cause more storms and other weather extremes

37) One statement deleted from a UN report in 1996 stated that “none of the studies cited above has shown clear evidence that we can attribute the observed climate changes to increases in greenhouse gases”

38) The world “warmed” by 0.07 +/- 0.07 degrees C from 1999 to 2008, not the 0.20 degrees C expected by the IPCC

39) The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says “it is likely that future tropical cyclones (typhoons and hurricanes) will become more intense” but there has been no increase in the intensity or frequency of tropical cyclones globally

40) Rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere can be shown not only to have a negligible effect on the Earth’s many ecosystems, but in some cases to be a positive help to many organisms

41) Researchers who compare and contrast climate change impact on civilizations found warm periods are beneficial to mankind and cold periods harmful

42) The Met Office asserts we are in the hottest decade since records began but this is precisely what the world should expect if the climate is cyclical

43) Rising CO2 levels increase plant growth and make plants more resistant to drought and pests

44) The historical increase in the air’s CO2 content has improved human nutrition by raising crop yields during the past 150 years

45) The increase of the air’s CO2 content has probably helped lengthen human lifespans since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution

46) The IPCC alleges that “climate change currently contributes to the global burden of disease and premature deaths” but the evidence shows that higher temperatures and rising CO2 levels has helped global populations

47) In May of 2004, the Russian Academy of Sciences published a report concluding that the Kyoto Protocol has no scientific grounding at all.

48) The “Climate-gate” scandal pointed to a expensive public campaign of disinformation and the denigration of scientists who opposed the belief that CO2 emissions were causing climate change

49) The head of Britain’s climate change watchdog has predicted households will need to spend up to £15,000 on a full energy efficiency makeover if the Government is to meet its ambitious targets for cutting carbon emissions.

50) Wind power is unlikely to be the answer to our energy needs. The wind power industry argues that there are “no direct subsidies” but it involves a total subsidy of as much as £60 per MWh which falls directly on electricity consumers. This burden will grow in line with attempts to achieve Wind power targets, according to a recent OFGEM report.

51) Wind farms are not an efficient way to produce energy. The British Wind Energy Association (BWEA) accepts a figure of 75 per cent back-up power is required.

52) Global temperatures are below the low end of IPCC predictions not at “at the top end of IPCC estimates”

53) Climate alarmists have raised the concern over acidification of the oceans but Tom Segalstad from Oslo University in Norway , and others, have noted that the composition of ocean water – including CO2, calcium, and water – can act as a buffering agent in the acidification of the oceans.

54) The UN’s IPCC computer models of human-caused global warming predict the emergence of a “hotspot” in the upper troposphere over the tropics. Former researcher in the Australian Department of Climate Change, David Evans, said there is no evidence of such a hotspot

55) The argument that climate change is a of result of global warming caused by human activity is the argument of flat Earthers.

56) The manner in which US President Barack Obama sidestepped Congress to order emission cuts shows how undemocratic and irrational the entire international decision-making process has become with regards to emission-target setting.

57) William Kininmonth, a former head of the National Climate Centre and a consultant to the World Meteorological Organisation, wrote “the likely extent of global temperature rise from a doubling of CO2 is less than 1C. Such warming is well within the envelope of variation experienced during the past 10,000 years and insignificant in the context of glacial cycles during the past million years, when Earth has been predominantly very cold and covered by extensive ice sheets.”

58) Canada has shown the world targets derived from the existing Kyoto commitments were always unrealistic and did not work for the country.

59) In the lead up to the Copenhagen summit, David Davis MP said of previous climate summits, at Rio de Janeiro in 1992 and Kyoto in 1997 that many had promised greater cuts, but “neither happened”, but we are continuing along the same lines.

60) The UK ’s environmental policy has a long-term price tag of about £55 billion, before taking into account the impact on its economic growth.

61) The UN’s panel on climate change warned that Himalayan glaciers could melt to a fifth of current levels by 2035. J. Graham Cogley a professor at Ontario Trent University, claims this inaccurate stating the UN authors got the date from an earlier report wrong by more than 300 years.

62) Under existing Kyoto obligations the EU has attempted to claim success, while actually increasing emissions by 13 per cent, according to Lord Lawson. In addition the EU has pursued this scheme by purchasing “offsets” from countries such as China paying them billions of dollars to destroy atmospheric pollutants, such as CFC-23, which were manufactured purely in order to be destroyed.

63) It is claimed that the average global temperature was relatively unchanging in pre-industrial times but sky-rocketed since 1900, and will increase by several degrees more over the next 100 years according to Penn State University researcher Michael Mann. There is no convincing empirical evidence that past climate was unchanging, nor that 20th century changes in average global temperature were unusual or unnatural.

64) Michael Mann of Penn State University has actually shown that the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age did in fact exist, which contrasts with his earlier work which produced the “hockey stick graph” which showed a constant temperature over the past thousand years or so followed by a recent dramatic upturn.

65) The globe’s current approach to climate change in which major industrialised countries agree to nonsensical targets for their CO2 emissions by a given date, as it has been under the Kyoto system, is very expensive.

66) The “Climate-gate” scandal revealed that a scientific team had emailed one another about using a “trick” for the sake of concealing a “decline” in temperatures when looking at the history of the Earth’s temperature.

67) Global temperatures have not risen in any statistically-significant sense for 15 years and have actually been falling for nine years. The “Climate-gate” scandal revealed a scientific team had expressed dismay at the fact global warming was contrary to their predictions and admitted their inability to explain it was “a travesty”.

68) The IPCC predicts that a warmer planet will lead to more extreme weather, including drought, flooding, storms, snow, and wildfires. But over the last century, during which the IPCC claims the world experienced more rapid warming than any time in the past two millennia, the world did not experience significantly greater trends in any of these extreme weather events.

69) In explaining the average temperature standstill we are currently experiencing, the Met Office Hadley Centre ran a series of computer climate predictions and found in many of the computer runs there were decade-long standstills but none for 15 years – so it expects global warming to resume swiftly.

70) Richard Lindzen, Professor of Atmospheric Sciences at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, wrote: “The notion of a static, unchanging climate is foreign to the history of the Earth or any other planet with a fluid envelope. Such hysteria (over global warming) simply represents the scientific illiteracy of much of the public, the susceptibility of the public to the substitution of repetition for truth.”

71) Despite the 1997 Kyoto Protocol’s status as the flagship of the fight against climate change it has been a failure.

72) The first phase of the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), which ran from 2005 to 2007 was a failure. Huge over-allocation of permits to pollute led to a collapse in the price of carbon from €33 to just €0.20 per tonne meaning the system did not reduce emissions at all.

73) The EU trading scheme, to manage carbon emissions has completely failed and actually allows European businesses to duck out of making their emissions reductions at home by offsetting, which means paying for cuts to be made overseas instead.

74) To date “cap and trade” carbon markets have done almost nothing to reduce emissions.

75) In the United States , the cap-and-trade is an approach designed to control carbon emissions and will impose huge costs upon American citizens via a carbon tax on all goods and services produced in the United States. The average family of four can expect to pay an additional $1700, or £1,043, more each year. It is predicted that the United States will lose more than 2 million jobs as the result of cap-and-trade schemes.

76) Dr Roy Spencer, a principal research scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, has indicated that out of the 21 climate models tracked by the IPCC the differences in warming exhibited by those models is mostly the result of different strengths of positive cloud feedback – and that increasing CO2 is insufficient to explain global-average warming in the last 50 to 100 years.

77) Why should politicians devote our scarce resources in a globally competitive world to a false and ill-defined problem, while ignoring the real problems the entire planet faces, such as: poverty, hunger, disease or terrorism.

78) A proper analysis of ice core records from the past 650,000 years demonstrates that temperature increases have come before, and not resulted from, increases in CO2 by hundreds of years.

79) Since the cause of global warming is mostly natural, then there is in actual fact very little we can do about it. (We are still not able to control the sun).

80) A substantial number of the panel of 2,500 climate scientists on the United Nation’s International Panel on Climate Change, which created a statement on scientific unanimity on climate change and man-made global warming, were found to have serious concerns.

81) The UK’s Met Office has been forced this year to re-examine 160 years of temperature data after admitting that public confidence in the science on man-made global warming has been shattered by revelations about the data.

82) Politicians and activists push for renewable energy sources such as wind turbines under the rhetoric of climate change, but it is essentially about money – under the system of Renewable Obligations. Much of the money is paid for by consumers in electricity bills. It amounts to £1 billion a year.

83) The “Climate-gate” scandal revealed that a scientific team had tampered with their own data so as to conceal inconsistencies and errors.

84) The “Climate-gate” scandal revealed that a scientific team had campaigned for the removal of a learned journal’s editor, solely because he did not share their willingness to debase science for political purposes.

85) Ice-core data clearly show that temperatures change centuries before concentrations of atmospheric CO2 change. Thus, there appears to be little evidence for insisting that changes in concentrations of CO2 are the cause of past temperature and climate change.

86) There are no experimentally verified processes explaining how CO2 concentrations can fall in a few centuries without falling temperatures – in fact it is changing temperatures which cause changes in CO2 concentrations, which is consistent with experiments that show CO2 is the atmospheric gas most readily absorbed by water.

87) The Government’s Renewable Energy Strategy contains a massive increase in electricity generation by wind power costing around £4 billion a year over the next twenty years. The benefits will be only £4 to £5 billion overall (not per annum). So costs will outnumber benefits by a range of between eleven and seventeen times.

88) Whilst CO2 levels have indeed changed for various reasons, human and otherwise, just as they have throughout history, the CO2 content of the atmosphere has increased since the beginning of the industrial revolution, and the growth rate has now been constant for the past 25 years.

89) It is a myth that CO2 is a pollutant, because nitrogen forms 80% of our atmosphere and human beings could not live in 100% nitrogen either: CO2 is no more a pollutant than nitrogen is and CO2 is essential to life.

90) Politicians and climate activists make claims to rising sea levels but certain members in the IPCC chose an area to measure in Hong Kong that is subsiding. They used the record reading of 2.3 mm per year rise of sea level.

91) The accepted global average temperature statistics used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change show that no ground-based warming has occurred since 1998.

92) If one factors in non-greenhouse influences such as El Nino events and large volcanic eruptions, lower atmosphere satellite-based temperature measurements show little, if any, global warming since 1979, a period over which atmospheric CO2 has increased by 55 ppm (17 per cent).

93) US President Barack Obama pledged to cut emissions by 2050 to equal those of 1910 when there were 92 million Americans. In 2050, there will be 420 million Americans, so Obama’s promise means that emissions per head will be approximately what they were in 1875. It simply will not happen.

94) The European Union has already agreed to cut emissions by 20 percent to 2020, compared with 1990 levels, and is willing to increase the target to 30 percent. However, these are unachievable and the EU has already massively failed with its Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), as EU emissions actually rose by 0.8 percent from 2005 to 2006 and are known to be well above the Kyoto goal.

95) Australia has stated it wants to slash greenhouse emissions by up to 25 percent below 2000 levels by 2020, but the pledges were so unpopular that the country’s Senate has voted against the carbon trading Bill, and the Opposition’s Party leader has now been ousted by a climate change sceptic.

96) Canada plans to reduce emissions by 20 percent compared with 2006 levels by 2020, representing approximately a 3 percent cut from 1990 levels but it simultaneously defends its Alberta tar sands emissions and its record as one of the world’s highest per-capita emissions setters.

97) India plans to reduce the ratio of emissions to production by 20-25 percent compared with 2005 levels by 2020, but all Government officials insist that since India has to grow for its development and poverty alleviation, it has to emit, because the economy is driven by carbon.

98) The Leipzig Declaration in 1996, was signed by 110 scientists who said: “We – along with many of our fellow citizens – are apprehensive about the climate treaty conference scheduled for Kyoto, Japan, in December 1997” and “based on all the evidence available to us, we cannot subscribe to the politically inspired world view that envisages climate catastrophes and calls for hasty actions.”

99) A US Oregon Petition Project stated “We urge the United States government to reject the global warming agreement that was written in Kyoto, Japan in December, 1997, and any other similar proposals. The proposed limits on greenhouse gases would harm the environment, hinder the advance of science and technology, and damage the health and welfare of mankind. There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of CO2, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate.”

100) A report by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change concluded “We find no support for the IPCC’s claim that climate observations during the twentieth century are either unprecedented or provide evidence of an anthropogenic effect on climate.”

Some Humor







Sunday, December 13, 2009

Reporting From Paris is Safer than Reporting From Gaza


In a rare moment of candor, The New York Times and The International Herald Tribune published a report by Steven Erlanger entitled "In Gaza, Hamas’s Insults to Jews Complicate Peace."

For those of us who are critical of these two publications because of their usually biased reporting about Israel, this article came as a pleasant surprise. At the same time we had to ask ourselves what had motivated Erlanger to file suddenly a report so critical of Hamas. The answer came when I read an article published by CAMERA which seems to shed light on reporting from Gaza. Steven Erlanger wrote this article in Paris after concluding his stint as correspondent in Jerusalem.

Can it be that reporters in the Middle East are rarely critical of Hamas because this can be hazardous to the health of the reporter? The answer is yes, and Erlanger proves it.

I'll take anything that the media publishes that if fair towards Israel, but the problem is that these reports never appear in the midst of a crisis when they are most needed.

However, I'll take anything and whenever it is published. But the New York Times will have to do much more before I renew my subscrition.

Read Article in the NYT

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Who let the dogs out?


In preparation for the Olympics, Vancouver transit has announced the introduction of bomb-sniffing dogs to its mass transit system. The announcement has some Muslims worried, since they consider dogs unclean and avoid contact with them. Muslim cab drivers in that city have gone as far as refusing blind passengers in their cabs if they have a seeing eye dog. Some Muslim residents have asked for the dogs to be trained to remain 30 centimeters away from them.
Perhaps the dogs to should be trained to avoid sniffing Muslims all together. After all, who would expect a devout Muslim to carry explosives?

If you want to know how intimidated the Canadian media has become because of legislation and threats, all you have to do is scroll to the end of the article in the CBC web page. The comments section is disabled and no comments are accepted on this topic.

You don't need a fear-sniffing dog to recognize why.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Don't Cry for Federal Bureaucrats



The number of federal workers making salaries above $100,000 has increased by 46%, those earning above $150,000 by 119% and those with salaries above $170,000 by 93%.

On average federal workers earn $30,000 more than their counterparts in the private sector. All this for spending most of the day placing "out to lunch" signs on their desks. However, I am grateful for those who do nothing. The ones who really scare me are the ones doing their jobs.

Something to read over the weekend...

Charles Krauthammer has written a fantastic analysis of the way the redistributionists are fighting to achieve what socialism failed to do. Using the new religious fervor of environmentalists, the left is slowly but surly moving towards the destruction of our economic system. No beards, or guerrillas, no fighting in the jungle, no demonstrations. The new radicals are wearing suits and ties, are clean cut and use their connections among the "intellectual elites" to move in the direction of a world bureaucracy running every aspect of our lives.

Read Article by Charles Krauthammer

Having been involved in the field of education, I am aware of attempts by all kind of organizations to infuse their ideologies into the classroom. The motto for many of those ideologues could have easily been "Brainwashing is Fundamental." As a supervisor I usually took the magazines, posters and videos I received in the mail and threw them in garbage. Videos I not only threw away, but made sure that they were destroyed prior to their disposal. Teachers are always looking for a "day off" when they can just sit in the back of the room and show a movie, regardless of content or quality.

Well, now Michelle Malkin reports about a project between Hollywood and Marxist propagandist Howard Zinn that will be shown on the History Channel based on his "A People's History of the United States." The first victim of this documentary will be the truth.

I have no doubt that thousands of teachers will record this program and show it to millions of children. The process of brainwashing and indoctrination is starting earlier and earlier; and we the taxpayers are paying for it. The process will culminate in college, where parents will pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to make sure that their children are educated to despise what our forefathers worked so hard to achieve.

Read Article by Michelle Malkin

"Were we directed from Washington when to sow, and when to reap, we should soon want bread." --Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Sheikh Obama and His Two Wars, by Daniel Pipes

Obama’s Nobel “lecture” offers critics the usual cornucopia of opportunities, but I shall focus on just two statements:

“I am the commander-in-chief of a nation in the midst of two wars.” And here I thought there were three wars. Obama’s two are Iraq and Afghanistan; missing is what George W. Bush termed the War on Terror and I call the “war on radical Islam.” Obama apparently reduces that third one to al-Qaeda and counts it as part of the Afghan war. His mistake has real consequences; long after American troops have left Iraq and Afghanistan, Islamists will be attacking and subverting us. If we don’t see their efforts as a war, we lose.

“Religion is used to justify the murder of innocents by those who have distorted and defiled the great religion of Islam.” Here, Obama follows his predecessor in presenting himself as an interpreter of Islam. I ridiculed “Imam Bush” for telling Muslims about true Islam and its distortion, and now I must ridicule “Sheikh Obama” for the same. He’s a politician, not a theologian. He’s a Christian, not a Muslim. He should steer completely clear from the topic of who are good or bad Muslims.

— Daniel Pipes is director of the Middle East Forum and Taube distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University.

Monday, December 7, 2009

A waist is a terrible thing to waste

Well, I continue to find things to ponder about in wonderful Boca Raton.

In my last entry I was commenting about the elderly gentleman who drove 22 miles to save 50 cents on strawberries. The other day I saw him again. And again he left me pondering.

I was at the pool. Yes New Yorkers, eat your heart out, I was at the pool while you were freezing your posteriors; when he arrived dressed in his swimsuit and a colorful shirt. So far everything was normal. I nodded at him and he nodded back. He then proceeded to remove his shirt. Upon completion of the removal I looked at him and had to grab the most important tool of Floridian swimmers: The Noodle. I was in such shock that I could have drowned without my orange noodle.

"What caused this shock?" you may ask. Was it a scar? Was it a tattoo? No.

I was in shock when I realized that the gentleman in question had no waist. The elastic on his bathing suit was wrapped around his breast. Can you picture this? Here was this specimen of a man wearing shorts that went from his knees to his nipples. Since then I witnessed other Floridians who were stricken by this strange deformity.

Can anyone tell me if this is contagious? Is it caused by expensive strawberries?

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Adventures in Bocaland


And now, a few more comments on life in Florida.

There is a genetic trait that affects mostly, but not exclusively, women when spending time in Florida: Shopping.

In the case of the affected men, the scope of their interest is limited to stores where the merchandise has to be plugged, downloaded, programmed, contains screens, speakers, hard drives, tools, lenses, keyboards and instruction booklets the size of the Encyclopedia Britannica.

Women, on the other hand, will go to any store where the merchandise has to be worn, eaten, decorated, or requires the hiring of Halliburton to install in the bathroom of the condo. The installation usually costs several thousands dollars more than the value of the property.

The stores in Florida that cater to these genetic needs are indeed very interesting and merit a closer look. The average mall or store is large enough to qualify outside the United States as a city-state or a principality. As a matter of fact, I have visited malls where each store was the size of St. Peter's Cathedral. The bicycle section in the super Walmart in my neighborhood could easily handle The Intrepid, and I am sure that Sam Walton would not object to selling aircraft carriers. After all, everything else is sold there.

What caught my attention the other day, was seeing old ladies, yes, widows of the Civil War veterans mentioned in a prior entry, go shopping there. When you see these ladies in an airport, they require a wheelchair to transport them from the ticket counter to the plane. Distance, 72 inches. Yet the decrepitude exhibited in the airport suddenly disappears when the store is the size Monaco and contains 25 miles of aisles. Tell a lady in Brooklyn to take a walk from Flatbush Avenue to Newark Airport and she will certify you as insane. Yet, put the same lady in a store which requires walking this distance between the underwear section and bedding. and she will walk faster than a marathon runner. Of course, this speed can be increase by strategically placing "sale" signs.

Which brings me to the subject of sales. The other day a World War I veteran, whom the Civil War veterans call "Junior", was was proudly explaining how he saved 50 cents by going to Delray to buy strawberries. Distance 11 miles each way. Even in a hybrid that must have cost him more than 50 cents

I was going to do the calculation, but I must stop blogging. My wife is waiting for me. We are going shopping.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Another Attrocity From Fallujah


The burned, mutilated corpses of two Blackwater contractors hang from a bridge outside Fallujah while Iraqi civilians celebrate.


While the media has been concentrating almost nonstop on the marital woes of Tiger Woods and the two interlopers who managed to crash the state dinner at the White House, almost nothing is being heard about the outrage perpetuated against Matthew McCabe, Petty Officer Jonathan Keefe and Petty Officer Julio Huertas who stand accused of giving a bloody lip to Ahmed Hashim Abed.

Abed, in case you don't know, was the mastermind behind the killing and mutilation of the four Blackwater security guards in Fallujah in in 2004.

Here we have three Navy SEALS facing a court martial and an end to their military careers, instead of being held as what they are: Examples of military heroism, sacrifice and dedication.

Look at the picture above, and tell me that a fat lip to the mastermind of this atrocity is something that merits prosecution. If you feel differently start sending letters to the White House, appropriate cabinet members and legislators.

If this is the way we treat our military, then let's get the hell out of Iraq and Afghanistan today!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Back in Sunny Florida Via Auto-Train




The platforms to load the cars

Waiting to be loaded

My car arriving in Florida






Well, I just settled in my winter residence in beautiful South Florida. As usual, the first two days were dedicated to filling the fridge and taking care of the things that needed repair.

I am of the opinion that second homes are populated by goblins that lay dormant while the place is occupied, and awake the moment we close the residence. It is at this point that they take tiny equipment and destroy faucets, washers, water heaters, and any other convenience required to make modern man/woman happy.

South Florida has also another gift to empty residences: Salamanders that are able to penetrate walls, but only in one direction. Once they are in the apartment they starve and freeze to death. However, before departing for the great condominiums in the sky, they leave thousands of little things that resemble black rice. I was told it is shit. But I cannot believe that salamanders can crap four times their body weight before dying. Guess who has to remove the carcasses and the shit. Husbands, that's who.

This time the trip South was done by railroad using Auto Train. This was done so that I could transport my car without having to drive 1350 miles, with half of these miles looking at signs that advertise South of the Border in South Carolina.

Driving is exhausting. Taking the train is just extremely tiring. Make your choice as to what you prefer. However, there was one positive aspect to this trip. My wife and I were the "kids". Most passengers were veterans of the Civil War and World War I. And they all golf.

A phenomena that takes place aboard this train requires also intensive scrutiny by scientists. The moment the lights go out, the cell phones begin to ring. Dozens of old ladies begin to look though oversized handbags for a tiny cell phone. Once they find it, they have to look at the caller ID and attempt to remember how to answer. All this while the phone is playing The William Tell overture.

Children and grandchildren who have not spoken to grandma in decades wait for the passengers to close their eyes to call. And grandma has to give intensive details about the trip, grandpa and their bowel movements.

The train departs from the suburbs of Washington at 4 PM and arrives in the suburbs of Orlando at 8 AM. You can recognize those who have taken the train for the first time by the fact that they are waiting for the car in 80 degrees weather wearing heavy ski jackets. Veterans seem to have worn shorts underneath their winter clothes. The emerge from the train in white shorts and Hawaiian or pink T-shirts.

The train is 3/4 of a mile long, and the vehicles are placed in cars that form a long tunnel. Each car has a number which is placed on the door with a magnet. As the cars emerge from the train, a dispatcher calls the number of the car and old ladies are tempted to yell "bingo" until they realize that they are in a train station and not in a house of worship.

The cars emerge in no logical order. We were among the first to arrive at the station in Virginia, and we had to wait for almost an hour to get the car. and then had to drive over three hours to get home. But, it was worth it. With all the complaints, the people at Amtrak were nice and polite. Dinner included wine, and breakfast included fresh coffee. What else can you ask for.

The lounge was open throughout the trip with free beverage and snacks. Many passengers spent hours in the lounge. I think that they were reminiscing about their experiences in the Civil War.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

When Crashing The White House Was Unnecessary

Well wishers line up to shake hands with the president on New Year's Day


With all the hullabaloo created by the Virginia couple that crashed the State Dinner at the White House, I was reminded of the fact that up to the 1930's it was quite common for the president to open the White House on New Year's Day and shake hands with well wishers who stood on line for hours to participate in this event. No invitation was necessary.

As a matter fact, in 1863, President Lincoln shook so many hands that he was afraid of cramps which would make his signature appear weak on a document he intended o sign that evening.

This document was The Emancipation Proclamation.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

I will resume blogging Wednesday, December 2.


I am going to be busy the next couple of days. I will resume blogging on Wednesday.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Trouble With The Bubble

Modern Dubai


Dubai, 1960


So Bubble Land is in trouble. Surprise, surprise.

Over the last few years I have been following with fascination the development of Dubai, and listened to "experts" discuss the economic miracle that the enlightened sheiks in this medieval kingdom were performing. They were diversifying, they were modernizing, they were developing, and they were loosening their reliance on income from oil.

While the experts were looking at the economic development, I was looking at something else. I was looking at an enclave in the middle of the desert, depending on quasi slave labor from Eastern Europe and South Asia, and governed by a kleptocracy based on nepotism in a culture where baksheesh is still the way to do business. Revenue was based on oil with its fluctuations in price and on investments around the globe, with the ups and downs of the global market.

While the world economy was growing everything was wonderful. But it also was wonderful for Bernie Madoff. It takes no genius to make money when the economy is bullish, but it does take genus to prepare for the bears, or in the case of the Emirates, the camels.

And so it went on for years. While revenue was coming in, the al-Maktoum dynasty prepared for the rainy days; sorry, for the sand storms, by doing the fiscally responsible things. Every economist knows that to prepare for economic downturn you have to do the following: Build the world's tallest building, create skiing resorts where you import or desalinize water to create snow, build artificial islands in the shape of palm trees to increase the size of your beaches, and import everything you need.

Then make sure that 84% of the population is foreign born, underpaid and treated as an underclass. Have your native population live like parasites, place relatives in key positions, and declare yourself a financial hub. If you build it, they will come. And they did. Russian Mafiosi, arm dealers, speculators, con artists and legitimate businesses that thought the boom will last forever. And the bubble kept growing.

But, like all bubbles, this one too had to explode. And yesterday, as we in America dealt with turkey and stuffing, Dubai managed to provide the world with the biggest turkey when the debt-laden Dubai state corporation was unable to meet its interest bill. As in all deserts, the oasis very often proves to have been a mirage.

Decades from now, a caravan will cross that desert, and from a sandy hill will protrude the ruins of what once was the world's tallest building. Not many tears will be shed.

Read Times report.



Why Our Stoodents is Iliterat

For those of us who have spent our lives as educators, this report by Katherine Kersten in The Star Tribune of Minnesota offers an insight into what schools of education are doing and the reasons for the mediocrity of teachers graduating from those schools.

I have interviewed hundreds of teachers who gave me myriads of cliches, but could not answer basic questions on the subjects they were supposed to teach. English teachers stammered when asked the title of the last book they read; social studies teachers couldn't explain the causes of World War I; math teachers had difficulties explaining how to solve a quadratic equation and lacked the knowledge to teach an advanced course in mathematics.

In the meantime the University of Minnesota has introduced the following ideological requirements for graduation. All similarities to the Cultural Revolution or Stalinist purges are NOT coincidental:

The task group is part of the Teacher Education Redesign Initiative, a
multiyear project to change the way future teachers are trained at the U’s
flagship campus. The initiative is premised, in part, on the conviction that
Minnesota teachers’ lack of “cultural competence” contributes to the poor
academic performance of the state’s minority students. Last spring, it charged
the task group with coming up with recommendations to change this. In
January,planners will review the recommendations and decide how to
proceed.

The report advocates making race, class and gender politics the“overarching
framework” for all teaching courses at the U. It calls for evaluating future
teachers in both coursework and practice teaching based on their willingness to
fall into ideological lockstep.

The first step toward “cultural competence,” says the task group, is for
future teachers to recognize — and confess — their own bigotry. Anyone familiar
with the reeducation camps of China’s Cultural Revolution will recognize the
modus operandi.

The task group recommends, for example, that prospective teachers be
required to prepare an “autoethnography” report. They must describe their own
prejudices and stereotypes, question their “cultural” motives for wishing to
become teachers, and take a “cultural intelligence” assessment designed to
ferret out their latent racism, classism and other “isms.” They “earn points”for
“demonstrating the ability to be self-critical.”

The goal of these exercises, in the task group’s words, is to ensure
that“future teachers will be able to discuss their own histories and current
thinking drawing on notions of white privilege, hegemonic masculinity,
heteronormative, and internalized oppression.”

Future teachers must also recognize and denounce the fundamental injustices
at the heart of American society, says the task group. From a historical
perspective, they must “understand that … many groups are typically not
included” within America’s “celebrated cultural identity,” and that “such
exclusion is frequently a result of dissimilarities in power and influence.” In
particular, aspiring teachers must be able “to explain how institutional racism
works in schools.”

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!


More on Climategate

The emails apparently hacked from the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia are available for view.

Click here to view documents

Run Rudy, Run

Trouble for the Democrat senator from New York.

Rasmussen Reports that telephone a survey of voters in the state finds Rudy Giuliani, the former Republican mayor of New York City, leading senator Gillibrand by 13 points – 53% to 40%. Four percent (4%) like some other candidate, and just two percent (2%) are undecided.

Good news for Rudy, who has been seen a lot on television since the announcement of the decision to try KSM and partners in Manhattan.

My contribution to Rudy's campaign will be sent the moment he announces his candidacy.

Click here for a complete Rasmussen Report.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Raving and Ranting

Click to enlarge
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
BROTHER, CAN YOU SPARE A DIME?

If you live in New York, you are familiar with the bums who sit in front of a folding table with a large 5 gallon plastic water bottle , asking passersby to contribute to the United Homeless Organization. This is a common sight all over Manhattan. After all this is where the money is.

I never donated a penny because the bums asking for money looked healthy enough to work. Furthermore, there was always a Dickensian feel to the whole enterprise of using bums to collect money.

Well, those of us who are suspicious by nature and believers in self-reliance for survival have been justified in our skepticism when attorney general Andrew Cuomo filed a suit claiming that that the the whole UHO was a scam run by con artists who pocketed the money collected. UHO founder Stephen Riley and director Myra Walker took a big cut of the money to fund personal shopping sprees at Gamestop, Home Shopping Network, Bed, Bath & Beyond, P. C. Richard, as well as their monthly cable bills, legal papers charge.

This is ACORN revisited. A group of con artists taking the public for a ride, but the outcry seems to come in the form of some minor reports by local news outlets and Glenn Beck in his radio show.

I must add a personal experience that took place last year in Boca Raton. I had just eaten breakfast at Panera Bread where I noticed a big "Now Hiring" sign outside the store. As I drove away, I stopped at a red light in the intersection of Glades and 441, where a young, healthy and relatively good looking female was holding a sign asking for money. As she approached my car, I opened the window and told her about the sign in Panera. She looked at me for a few seconds, said "fuck you" and walked to the next car where she probable got some money from a resident of the Polo Club. Yes, the ones who earn like Episcopalians and vote like Puerto Ricans.

America...what a country!
____________________________________________________________________
In the meantime, Climategate continues to unravel. The Wall Street Journal has an editorial on the subject that merits reading.

Vintage Mark Steyn

Mark Steyn

Mark Steyn has another vintage column where in his caustic tone he manages to show the ridiculousness and insanity of the left. This time in the United Kingdom. I was going to put the link, but I realized that this article merits to be placed in its entirety. Read and enjoy...or weep.

THE NEATHERWORLD

Steyn on Britain and Europe
Tuesday, 24 November 2009
HAPPY WARRIORfrom National Review

"Would it not be easier,” wrote Bertolt Brecht after the East German uprising in 1953, “for the government to dissolve the people and elect another?”

The thought has occurred to several governments over the years, and I don’t mean the dictatorships. Andrew Neather, a former speechwriter for Tony Blair, wrote a piece for the London Evening Standard the other day and, considering he’s one of those quintessentially slippery New Labour spinmeisters, it was disarmingly insouciant in its straightforwardness. When Labour came to power in 1997, the number of work permits issued each year quadrupled and immigration exploded. Mr Neather revealed that there was “a driving political purpose” behind this: “Mass immigration was the way that the UK Government was going to make the UK truly multicultural.” From Labour’s point of view, it would have the additional benefit of helping put the Conservatives out of sync with the times: As Mr Neather writes, “The policy was intended – even if this wasn’t its main purpose – to rub the Right’s nose in diversity and render their arguments out of date.” If the justification for US immigration is that we need foreigners to do “the jobs that Americans won’t do”, in the United Kingdom they need them to do the jobs that no-one in their right mind would hire a working-class Brit for: The imported workers would be engaged in fields that “certainly wouldn’t be taken by unemployed BNP voters from Barking or Burnley,” sneers Mr Neather. “Fascist au pair, anyone?”

The BNP is the British National Party, and yes, it is, broadly, fascist. But it barely existed until New Labour’s plan to “make the UK truly multicultural” got under way, and it certainly never had such a purchase on England’s white working class that the one major European power that never succumbed to ‘tween-wars fascism this year elected two BNP members to the European Parliament.

That’s the problem with dissolving the people and electing another: You’d have to be a genius to pull off such a transformation without any unintended consequences. If Blair’s game was to import cool new Labour voters and make the dead white males of the Tory Party look even more squaresville, he also wound up imposing huge and potentially fatal stresses on Britain’s fraying societal structure.

Take the recent observations of Anjem Choudary, Principal Lecturer of the London School of Shariah: “There is a spark that has ignited and its flame has become unstoppable,” he declared. “We find ourselves in the year 2009, waiting for Rome to fall, waiting for the White House to fall and indeed waiting for Buckingham Palace to fall.” Mr Choudary is a subject of the Crown but does not think of himself as such. His organization has demanded the Queen convert to Islam, wear a burka, and “stop playing God”. His website, Islam4UK, has many detailed illustrations of British landmarks after the introduction of Sharia: Buckingham Palace would be renamed “Buckingham Masjid” (or mosque) and have a dome fitted on top with speakers to call the faithful to prayer. It would be used as an Islamic court to issue punishments under Sharia, and also as a detention center for “prisoners of war”.

As it happens, Anjem Choudary is not an immigrant: He is British born and bred. But he is a testament to the “true multiculturalism” that New Labour prized so highly. For all but a few guilt-ridden middle-class liberals, “multiculturalism” is a nullity and those within its vapid bounds will seek their identity elsewhere. In a Britain with high Muslim immigration, high Muslim birth rates and high Muslim conversion rates, that means the host community winds up assimilating with the newcomers. In Surrey, the town of Sutton has just introduced female-only swimming sessions in the municipal pool for Muslim women. They’ll put blinds on the windows so no infidel men can see in, and the male lifeguards will be reassigned to other shifts. Might fall afoul of church-state separation in the US, but hey, what’s the big deal?

But why stop there? Azad Ali, the new advisor to the Crown Prosecution Service (the equivalent, more or less, of the US Attorneys), is a supporter of Abdullah Azzam, a key influence on Osama bin Laden, and a man who quotes approvingly such observations as “If I saw an American or British man wearing a soldier’s uniform inside Iraq I would kill him because that is my obligation.” Mr Ali’s appointment is part of the curious British strategy of “defusing” Islamic radicals by putting them all on the government payroll.

Even if one takes the view that arresting fellows for treason is awfully vulgar and a touch heavy-handed, it’s hard to see quite what benefit such chaps are to the United Kingdom. You can’t even say they contribute to “diversity” since such views are becoming distressingly ubiquitous. At a certain level, the idea of the muezzin issuing his call from Buckingham Palace is risible. But, after the Fall of Constantinople, it happened to what was then the largest Christian cathedral in the world. Is it really so fanciful to imagine the same thing happening in a country undergoing artificially induced, unprecedented demographic transformation?

The transparent ambition of an Anjem Choudary is less deluded than the blithe arrogance of an Andrew Neather. Combine them and toss in the likes of the British National Party, and you have the certainty of profound social convulsions in the years ahead. There'll always be an England? Ninety years ago, Bernard Shaw set his play Heartbreak House on the eve of the Great War among a British ruling class too smug and self-absorbed to see what was coming. “Do you think,” he wrote, “the laws of God will be suspended in favour of England because you were born in it?”from National Review

Monday, November 23, 2009

Burka Barbie

As part of a celebration of Barbie's 50th anniversary, an Italian designer has created a Barbie doll wearing a burka. Mattel supports the design. Among the most idiotic justifications for this Barbie is the following: "I know Barbie was something seen as bad before as an image for girls, but in actual fact the message with Barbie for women is you can be whatever you want to be."

Oh, really? In Saudi Arabia 15 girls burned to death in their school because the religious police "mutaween" would not allow them to be rescued from a burning school where they were not wearing the traditional garb of oppressed women.

My question for the designer of this doll: "Was she circumcised?" We know that under Islam many women are subjected to this process so that they can be whatever they want to be; just without an orgasm.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Articles That Caught My Attention

Have you heard about Climategate? If not, you are not alone. Well, worry no more and read this article. The environmentalists have been exposed for the phonies they are.

Read article about "Climategate"
Another article on the same subject

So you thought that now that now that we have elected a black president the race pimps would fade into oblivion. Well think again. Jesse Jackson is back with his old tricks again.

Click here to read the article

For those of us who remember Jimmy Carter announcing 1n 1977 tht the world would run out of oil in the 1980's, here is an aricle by George Will.

Click here to Read George Will

Friday, November 20, 2009

Raving and Ranting


In a move that is likely to create buyers remorse among Jewish voters who voted for Obama, the White House announced that it would cut in half the size of this year Hanukkah party. This is supposedly as a result of budgetary constraints. Aren't you glad that Obama is so concerned about the deficit? With more savings like this one, in a million years the budget of the US will be balanced.

In a related story, the Obama administration, as well as the European Union, was critical of Israel's decision to build 900 housing units in Gilo, a neighborhood of Jerusalem. The Palestinians, as can be expected, welcomed the criticism of Israel. In the meantime PM Nethanyahu resumed his invitation for Palestinians to resume peace talks. I wont hold my breath waiting.

In another idiotic report based on unsubstantiated data by the United Nations Food Population Fund (UNFPA), a claim is made that in The Philippines global warming is forcing women into prostitution. This is the result of lower income because of floods in coastal areas and a decline in fishing. What the study fails to clarify is how come despite the lower income and a raise in poverty, men will have enough money to patronize prostitutes. I am sure that with a contribution of a billion dollars to the UNFPA, they would be able to solve this crisis. All they need is some more luxurious buildings in New York, Paris and Zurich, some new furniture, and another one thousand bureaucrats. Actually, they could bring the Filipino prostitutes to work for the UN. After all, it is the largest bordello around.

Are you one of those who voted for Obama to put an end to racial politics? Did you think that Jackson and Sharpton would stop their blackmailing? If so, here is a quote from yesterday's Politico:
The Rev. Jesse Jackson on Wednesday night criticized Rep. Artur Davis (D-Ala.) for voting against the Democrats’ signature healthcare bill. “We even have blacks voting against the healthcare bill from Alabama,” Jackson said at a reception Wednesday night. “You can’t vote against healthcare and call yourself a black man.”
I agree with Jackson, those who voted against the healthcare bill can only call themselves "Americans."

The ratings war, as reported by Drudge November 18, 2009

FOXNEWS HANNITY/PALIN 4,200,000
FOXNEWS O'REILLY 3,868,000
FOXNEWS BECK 2,512,000
FOXNEWS GRETA 2,383,000
FOXNEWS BAIER 2,235,000
FOXNEWS SHEP 1,980,000
MSNBC OLBERMANN 1,041,000
CNNHN GRACE 1,036,000
MSNBC MADDOW 957,000
CNN KING 835,000
MSNBC HARDBALL 625,000
CNN COOPER 611,000

By the way, studies have shown that the audiences attracted to FOX News are better educated and more politically independent than the audiences of the rest of the cable news channels. MSNBC and CNN, keep the current lineups. The Republicans thank you.

UCLA students protested proposed increases in tuition. I have such mixed emotions on this topic. On one hand I understand that California is bankrupt. On the other hand, I know the contributions to society of having another million college graduates with degrees in Chicano Studies, Psychology, Political Science, Queer Studies, Women Studies, Theater, Black Studies, Judaic Studies, Puerto Rican Studies, just to name a few of majors that have provided California with some of the most talented waiters and limo drivers in the nation.
I don't like unions. I think that they are abusive, intransigent and greedy, and have tremendous damage to America. My experience dealing with unions in the field of education have given me enough material to substantiate my claims. Here is a small vignette from The Morning Call, in Alentown, Pennsylvani:

In pursuit of an Eagle Scout badge, Kevin Anderson, 17, has toiled for more than 200 hours hours over several weeks to clear a walking path
in an east Allentown park.

Little did the do-gooder know that his altruistic act would put him in the cross hairs of the city's largest municipal union.

Nick Balzano, president of the local Service Employees International
Union, told Allentown City Council Tuesday that the union is considering filing a grievance against the city for allowing Anderson to clear a 1,000-foot walking and biking path at Kimmets Lock Park.

"We'll be looking into the Cub Scout or Boy Scout who did the trails," Balzano told the council. Balzano said Saturday he isn't targeting Boy Scouts. But given the city's decision in July to lay off 39 SEIU members, Balzano said "there's to be no volunteers." No one except union members may pick up a hoe or shovel, plant a flower or clear a walking path.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Glenn Beck. A Modern Day Cassandra

As could have been expected, the attacks against Glenn Beck have increased in direct proportion to his ratings. Since joining FOX, his ratings boomed and viewership went from the hundreds of thousand to millions.

Interestingly, the attacks have included some conservatives, such as Charles Murray and Ramesh Ponnuru. Of course, the conservatives like the message but blame the messenger for Beck's style. For example, Charles Murray states that he TIVOed Beck’s program for several weeks and although he agrees with Beck 95% of the time, he didn’t like inaccuracies that Beck placed on his chalkboard. As his only example he lists Beck’s attribution to Jefferson of the following: “The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.” "Jefferson never said this," claims Murray. Hours of recorded programs and this is all he could come with? He instructs anyone interested to Google the quote and check it out. Well, I did so. And there are enough sources attributing this to Jefferson as to make it attributable. If not, let’s complain about all the made up and inaccurate quotes that one hears constantly from experts on TV.

This includes misquoting Palin with quotes from SNL to misquoting or making up quotes about the environment.On the other hand the left and the MSM have labeled Beck a fear monger for seeing the Progressive agenda as a threat to democracy. They claim that he uses snippets of speeches or videos out of context.

Can these claimants be a little more explicit? In what context did Anita Dunn refer to Mao as her favorite political philosopher? What is missing from Van Jones’s statement that environmentalists and business conglomerates are complicit in poisoning black neighborhoods? Where is the out of context of Rev. Wright or Bill Ayers statements?

As for his being a fear monger, this is claimed by people and organizations that do not hesitate to claim that unless we destroy our free market economy, life on earth is about to end. Or politicians who claim that millions will die in America unless we pass a health care bill. Or President Obama's claim that the economy would never recover without a porkstimulus bill is passed.

And Beck is the fear monger?

Sick and Getting Sicker

Click on image to enlarge


While our apologetic and cultural relativist president states that we shouldn't lecture others on women, Somalia is ensuring that women are treated with the respect and consideration commanded by their tolerant religion by stoning an adulteress. In case of any doubt, this is the XXI century. When you have to go to the BBC to find news about islamic attocities, you know that our mainstream media is reaching new lows.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Worth reading...

If you don't read any of the following, please read this one on Obamacare, and the questions that are not being asked by the media about the impact of rationing. It's a must read.

Read article about health care in the Wall Street Journal

Roger Simon from PJM has some nice words to say about Senator Lieberman whom he considers the most important person in government.

Read Article

What is going on in NY Congressional District 23? The victory of Bill Owens (D) was hailed by Pelosi and the White House as a victory the day after the last elections. Now this democrat's victory is in jeopardy as the victory margin has narrowed from 5000 to 3000 and 10,000 absentee ballots are about to be counted. Almost as good as a Hitchcock movie.

Read about NY-23 congressional race

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Readings to spoil your Sunday

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed strikes Manhattan again. At least this is the opinion of The Wall Street Journal. I found it hard to disagree with them.

Read Article

What are your thoughts on imminent domain? Since Kelo v. City of New London, I have had mixed emotions about this tool of the government to seize property. I understand the need of confiscatory power to improve the infrastructure of cities. But at what point does improvement of quality ends and greed begins? This article deals with the seizure of property for the construction of a sport arena.

Read Article

The usual cowards in academia find excuses for Islamism and Major Hasan.

Read Article

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Weekend Readings

He bowed for the Saudi king and now for Japan's emperor. The new diplomacy; speak softly and bow deep.


It would be easy to assume that Prime Minister Netanyahu's visit to Washington last week was overshadowed by Ft. Hood and the many other events that took place last week. However, this is not so. The visit was a slap in the face of the only reliable ally the US has in the Middle East. Barack Hussein Obama seems to talk about equal partnerships, equality and tolerance with every nation and despotic ruler, except with Israel.

Read Article

Friday, November 13, 2009

The Kremlinization of the Civil Service

No Republicans need apply

Yesterday I heard on talk radio that the Obama administration was getting ready to purge Republicans from the civil service. Initially I thought that this was just hyperbole and ignored it. Later on I decided to look at what had triggered this report and what I found is disturbing. The precedent is dangerous, and the Obama administration seems to forget that eventually the pendulum will swing, and the Republicans will return to power. Personally I hope that when this happens, the democrat methodology will be remembered and emulated.

By the way, where is the mainstream media that demanded Karl Rove's head for the firing of the US Attorneys by the Bush Administration?

I am placing here a link to a letter sent by the Chief Human Capital Officers Council (CHCOC) of the US Office of Personnel Management. Although the word Republican does not appear, the repetition of "higher standard" and "one that honors and supports the President’s strong commitment to a Government that is transparent and open" is enough for me to see a purge of the civil service.

For those of you who would remind me of the appointment of token republicans to the cabinet, let me remind you that those appointees can be easily fired after their political usefulness is over. Civil servants are placed there for a very long time, and I don't want characters like Van Jones and Anita Dunn established in positions where they can carry on the revolution from within the system.

Click here to read the CHCOC letter

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Richard Kemp at the UN


This is a video of the testimony of Colonel Richard Kemp from UNwatch.org, testifying in the United Nations at an Emergency Session on the Goldstone Report. It is a must watch. It is not often that we see men of integrity and valor in the floor of this organization.

Fox 1-The White House 0

The White House has granted Fox an interview with President Obama. The interview will be conducted next week by Major Garrett. In the meantime, Anita Dunn is out as communications director. The old adage is true: "Never pick a fight with those who buy ink by the bucket."

A black Columbia University professor has been arretsted after punching a colleague in a bar during a discussion on "white privilege." The reverse would have resulted in a "hate crime."

Read Article

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Vintage Mark Steyn

For the purposes of argument, let's accept the media's insistence that Major Hasan is a lone crazy.

So who's nuttier?

The guy who gives a lecture to other military doctors in which he says non-Muslims should be beheaded and have boiling oil poured down their throats?

Or the guys who say "Hey, let's have this fellow counsel our traumatized veterans and then promote him to major and put him on a Homeland Security panel?

Or the Army Chief of Staff who thinks the priority should be to celebrate diversity, even unto death?

Or the Secretary of Homeland Security who warns that the principal threat we face now is an outbreak of Islamophobia?

Or the president who says we cannot "fully know" why Major Hasan did what he did, so why trouble ourselves any further?

Or the columnist who, when a man hands out copies of the Koran before gunning down his victims while yelling "Allahu akbar," says you're racist if you bring up his religion?

Or his media colleagues who put Americans in the same position as East Germans twenty years ago of having to get hold of a foreign newspaper to find out what's going on?

General Casey has a point: An army that lets you check either the "home team" or "enemy" box according to taste is certainly diverse. But the logic in the remarks of Secretary Napolitano and others is that the real problem is that most Americans are knuckledragging bigots just waiting to go bananas. As Melanie Phillips wrote in her book Londonistan:

Minority-rights doctrine has produced a moral inversion, in which those doing
wrong are excused if they belong to a 'victim' group, while those at the
receiving end of their behaviour are blamed simply because they belong to the
'oppressive' majority"

To the injury of November 5, we add the insults of American officialdom and their poodle media. In a nutshell:

The real enemy — in the sense of the most important enemy — isn’t a bunch of flea-bitten jihadis sitting in a cave somewhere. It’s Western civilization’s craziness. We are setting our hair on fire and putting it out with a hammer.

With Gratitude to Our Servicepeople and Their Families


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Articles that caught my attention

Barney Frank and boyfriend. The boyforend has very poor taste in men.

Putrid congressman Barney Frank's boyfriend has been arrested in Boston for growing and possession of marijuana. Frank said he did not know his boyfriend was growing weed in the house they share and was not charged. In his defense, Frank claimed not to be able to recognize marijuana plants because "he is not a great outdoors man." Oh, the contempt he has for us. But, perhaps he is right. After all the morons in Boston keep reelecting him. Actually, he is not a great outdoors or indoors man.
This also brings memories of many years ago, when his putridness's boyfriend was arrested for running a prostitution ring from the house he shared with Frank. Frank again claimed that he didn't know what his boyfriend was doing in the house. I am glad to see that his ignorance is extended also to the other house where Frank spends much of time. The House of Representatives. There too Frank can claim ignorance. He didn't know anything about Fannie Mae, Freddie Mack, ACORN, the banking industry and a myriad of other important issues that he should have been aware of.

Anita Dunn will step down from her position as White House communications director. She will be replaced by Daniel Pfeiffer who is married to Sarah Feinberg, spokeswoman for enfant terrible Rahm Emanuel. I guess Anita Dunn will be now able to dedicate all of her time to the study of her favorite political philosopher, Mao.

For the prophets of doom. NOAA has just announced that October 2009 was the third coolest in record.

Read Report

Steve Rosen, writing for Foreign Policy, asks the Obama administration not to take Netanyahu to the woodshed. It is incredible how low US-Israel relations have sunk, and how little is US Jewry aware of it.

Read Article

Dorothy Rabinowitz writes about the Ft. Hood massacre. Her thesis is that Hasan's motives are known to everyone but the army brass and media. Must read.

Read Article

For the twntieth annycversay of the tearing down of the Berlin Wall, Fuad Ajami asks whether Muslims will tear down theis own walls.

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Sunday, November 8, 2009

Jumping to Conclusions


As I was watching the news reports on the developments in Ft Hood, I couldn't help but cringe at the number of times that I kept hearing different variations of the "Let's not jump to conclusions" mantra. Even president Obama gave us this exhortation and cautioned against a backlash against Muslims. I guess he was worried that the Saudi king would be upset. In his next visit, Obama will have to bow even deeper than he did last time they met.
Yet, the media itself was far from following this advise. Only that they jumped to conclusions that were palatable to the liberal, left wing mindset. They cannot watch a terror attack without jumping to conclusions as to the reasons that pushed the attacker to commit this brutal act. The early reports refrained from giving us the name of the shooter even though it was already circulating on the Internet thanks to Drudge. News organizations were worried that we might jump to conclusions that will taint the peace loving Muslim community. When the name of Major Malik Nidal Hasan was finally released, the media “jumped to the conclusion” that he was an American convert to Islam. We wouldn’t want viewers to assume that someone born into the Muslim faith could commit such an act.

But eventually we found out that Hasan was indeed born and raised a Muslim. When this was reported, the media had no choice but to go into spin and victimology mode. We were told that Hasan was a troubled man, afraid of being deployed to Afghanistan. He didn’t want to treat killers of Muslims; he was discriminated against by the military. He was given a poor evaluation report; he was against the war. At no point did our enlightened reporters use the dreaded ”T’” word. Terrorist. Let’s not jump to conclusions.

The fact is that Hasan is a terrorist who committed an act of terror, and did so in the name of Islam, a religion that he was born into, practiced and proselytized. The last words out of his mouth before squeezing the triggers in his guns were Allah u-akhbar, the battle cry of Islamists and suicide bombers.

The insanity defense is not valid. Only insane people carry on Islamic and suicide terrorism. Does anyone really believe that those who got into airplanes on September 11, 2001 were normal people? Palestinians have long sought people with psychological problems to strap on dynamite belts and blow themselves up. The fanaticism of Islamism and the concept of Jihad are a manifestation of a mental disorder. Whether the insanity is genetic or inflicted makes no difference. Islamism is insanity.

As for the fearful Muslim community in America, you can demonstrate you loyalty to this country not just by condemning the acts of terror, which you always do with the qualifier “however,” but by massively demonstrating against terror. We are aware that you are a community capable of mobilizing. We saw this in France and Denmark. We see it in the West Bank and Gaza. In Islamabad, Berlin and London. But always to demonstrate against the homelands that gave you the freedom and financial security that you never had in your native lands.

It’s about time that the Muslim community in the West realizes that you cannot live in the 21st century economically and in the 10th century culturally.

Major Hasan was not forced into the military, he volunteered. Muslims around the world were not forced to move to the West, and they are not forced to remain here.

However, Muslims shouldn’t worry. Whatever atrocity they commit, it will be explained and excused by the spineless media.

And yes, I jumped to this conclusion.