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Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Sunday, December 25, 2011
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Hanukkah, the ancient festival of lights, is a celebration of the re-establishment of the right of a people to worship God openly and publically. For this reason, the renowned medieval Jewish scholar Rashi celebrated Hanukkah by placing his menorah in his window closest to the street. Hanukkah reminds all people of all faiths of their natural right to worship God freely, openly, and without fear.
Monday, December 19, 2011
By Charles A. Morse
web posted October 21, 2002
U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has stated that North Korea has a small number of nuclear weapons. It has now been acknowledged that the Korean communists ignored the 1994 agreement with the Clinton Administration to freeze nuclear weapons development. The stage was set for this present crisis in the early 1950's when the Korean War was deliberately and treacherously ended with a stalemate between north and south. As our government and military now prepare for war against Iraq, it is instructive to review American policies that led to the Korean stalemate.
Korea was under Japanese occupation at the time of the 1943 Cairo Conference attended by Roosevelt, Churchill and Chiang Kai-shek where it was agreed that a post war Korea would be "free and independent." Two years later at the Potsdam Conference, attended by Truman, Churchill and Stalin, the policy was strangely reversed with a call for Korea to be divided along the 38th Parallel with the north handed over to Stalin. The allied excuse for betraying Korea was an alleged need to reward Stalin for entering the war against Japan. At the time, Germany had already surrendered and the Soviets would be allowed to enter the Japanese theatre the week of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. North Korea and other Far East territories would be subsequently handed over to the Soviets.
Kim Il Sung
After fortifying North Korea with 15 infantry and 2 armored divisions, 150 T-34 tanks and 200 Yak fighter planes, the Soviets demanded that all allied forces withdraw from the south. The U.S. complied with this demand. Major General Courtney Whitney observed "The State Department made its unilateral decision to limit South Korea's defensive force to light weapons and to organize the defenders along constabulary lines." State Department official Owen Lattimore stated at the time "The thing to do is let South Korea fall, but not to let it look as if we pushed it."
After the 1950 invasion of South Korea by the north, President Truman finally authorized American military support, under U.N.command, with South Korea clinging to a toe of land around the city of Pusan. Truman refused to accept an offer made at the time by Taiwan, headed by Chiang Kai-shek, to send 33,000 seasoned troops to aid South Korea. Instead, Truman ordered the American Seventh Fleet into the straits of Formosa both to prevent Taiwan from helping Korea and from invading communist controlled Mainland China. It should be noted that in 1950, Mao Tse-tung had not yet consolidated control over China and that Chiang was still very much in a position to liberate his country from the enveloping communist jack-boot. This inexplicable action by Truman would free China up to fight in Korea without fear of an invasion from Taiwan.
Truman responded to the liberation of Korea by strangely granting Red China military sanctuary in Manchuria. The book MacArthur: 1941-1951 states "This limitation upon available military force to repel an enemy attack would have no precedent either in our own history or in the history of the world. That the Red Chinese commander apparently knew such a decision would be forthcoming while General MacArthur did not, represents one of the blackest pages ever recorded." MacArthur stated in an interview he granted shortly before his death in 1965 "every message he sent to Washington during the Korean War was turned over by the State Department to the British, who, in turn, leaked it to Moscow" and that Truman refused his entreaties to investigate the leaks.
Red China stormed into Korea November 26, 1950 with the knowledge that their home base in Manchuria would be safe from attack. While the Red Chinese attacked, airfields and depots in clear view across the Yalu River in Manchuria would be free from attack. Communist MiGs could attack with impunity as retaliation was only allowed on the Korean side of the river. Air Force Lieutenant General George Stratemeyer stated (US News and World Report 2/11/55) "We had sufficient air, bombardment, fighters, reconnaissance so that I could have taken out all those supplies, those airdromes on the other side of the Yalu; I could have bombed the devils between there and Mukden, stopped that railroad operating and the people of China that were fighting could not have been supplied...but we weren't permitted to do it. As a result, a lot of American blood was spilled over there in Korea."
Chuck Morse is a radio talk show host on Salem Radio/WROL in Boston.
Saturday, December 17, 2011
In colonial times Christmas was frowned upon in New England and observed mostly as a private feast in mid-Atlantic and Southern colonies. The strait-laced New England Puritans, partially motivated by anti-Catholic sentiment, banned Christmas in 1659 under the guise that the holiday was pagan and that it encouraged decadence. Colonial Americans celebrated a Christmas that contained both religious and secular elements thus establishing a uniquely balanced American approach to faith. Christmas harkens back to the ancient Roman celebration of the Saturnalia, a day in which all Romans, Emperor and slave, addressed each other on a first name basis.
Christmas was not celebrated by colonial Puritans, Presbyterians, Baptists and Quakers but it was observed by Anglicans, Dutch Reformed, Lutherans and Catholics. Drawing from various old world traditions, Christmas in colonial America included bells, mistletoe, yule logs, wreaths, eggnog, gingerbread, and various Christmas foods. The Dutch settlers of New York contributed Sinter Klass and baked deserts. Christmas was a time for charity and for giving gifts to the poor. George Washington and other southern plantation owners were known to host lavish Christmas parties. Southerners of all economic levels celebrated raucous Christmas parties that included firing muskets into the air, banging pots, drinking, feasting, playing games, and generally taking time off from work. Bands of mummers, or folk-singers, dressed in costume, would roam Colonial towns on Christmas Eve caroling, acting in skits, and making revelry.
Christmas was proclaimed a federal holiday by an executive order that was signed into law by President Ulysses S. Grant, June 26, 1870. Since that time, Christmas has been confirmed into law by various acts of Congress and by the States. The legality of Christmas as a federal holiday has never been challenged in any American court. The American tradition has been to observe the religious aspects of Christmas in church or in the home and the secular aspects in various public forms.
There should, therefore, be no controversy around the celebration of Christmas. Indeed wishing someone a Merry Christmas should be viewed as American as wishing someone a happy Fourth of July. The general theme of Christmas as it has come to be defined, “Peace on earth, good-will toward men” is a universal theme at ought to be embraced. But what about the undeniable Christian nature of Christmas? Is it appropriate for our secular government to officially recognize what is essentially a religious holiday? The answer, to a degree, is yes.
It is an undeniable fact of history that America has been and largely remains a Christian nation. Indeed, by not establishing Christianity as a state religion, and by establishing a system of government and a society that respects religious differences and that considers all citizens to be equal under the law, America is, by its nature, a Christian nation. Christianity, unlike Islam and certain other religions, and unlike the secular political faiths of Nazism and Communism, involves a personal relationship between the believer and Jesus.
While historically Christianity has been used from time to time by secular political leaders and movements as a vehicle to obtain and enhance state power, Christianity, per se, rejects this notion. Indeed, Jesus established in his ministry the separation of church and state. Carrying forth the moral and ethical precepts of the Torah, Jesus recognized that rights emanate from the creator and not from the state.
It is indeed our Christian heritage that has made us the most successful and prosperous society ever established in human history. It is, therefore, entirely appropriate and fitting that we, as Americans, celebrate Christmas and by doing so honor and reflect upon our Christian heritage.
Friday, December 16, 2011
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I'm listening to a group of articulate and suave sounding guests on Boston's National Public Radio debate regarding whether or not the U.S.A. should water down or surrender its position on the United Nations Security Council. The fact that such a development would effectively end American national sovereignty is lost in the high-minded sophist- ries wafting over the airwaves. During the newsbreak, a tape is played that purportedly carries the shrill voice of the fanatic Islamic internationalist, Osama bin Laden, calling for the total submission of the non-Islamic world to Allah. The juxtaposition is rife with irony.
One-World-Order ultra-internationalism comes in all shapes and sizes, but underneath the exterior beats the hearts of either true-believing fanatics or fellow-traveling dupes. Historic examples include the Communist internationalists who, in the name of enlight- ened science, liquidated over 100 million human beings. The Nazis, in the name of racial purity and an Aryan-dominated New World Order, conducted a Holocaust against the Jews of Europe and convulsed the world in war. Today, Islamists, in the name of Allah, the one true god, and in the name of a Muslim-dominated World Order under which all surviving humans will submit to Allah, are threatening to spread chemicals and disease into the portion of the world that refuses to submit. Ultra-internationalist elitists view the United Nations as at the vanguard of a future World Order. They plot their coup de etat from the comfortable confines of boardrooms with dark wood paneling and antique fireplaces.
Evil World-Order movements have plagued every generation since the beginning of time. Their raison detre is always the same, a smug belief in the right of a socalled "en- lightened" clique to rule over their fellows allegedly for their own good. Internationalists pull this socalled "right" out of thin air and they market their evil to the masses. Wrap- ping themselves in either religious or scientific sounding terms, they slaughter those who stand in the way. Without exception, the internationalist always promises the same thing, world peace and justice in exchange for submission.
In his classic autobiography Witness, Whittaker Chambers, speaking from his experi- ence as a former Communist, posed the question "faith in God or faith in man?" The first step in becoming a Communist, Chambers pointed out, was a surrender of faith in God. Every World-Order movement in history has either involved an outright rejection of God, as in Communism and Nazism, or in a belief in the military conquest of the world by man in the name of God, which is the core belief of Islam.
The Torah recounts the fate of the world's first internationalist, Nimrod, who attempted to subdue the world and challenge the Almighty by building the tower of Babel. The plan was crushed when God scattered the people across the earth and confounded them with different languages, hence the birth of separate nations. At Sinai, God charged the Israelites with special tasks to enhance their holiness and promised them a tiny sliver of land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean. Rather than belief in a World Order, the Israelites believed in service to God as a means of setting an example to the nations of the world.
Jesus taught that individuals could find salvation through a personal relationship with God. Render unto God what is God's and unto Caesar what is Caesar's, Jesus admon- ished his followers, thus establishing individual accountability to God and a separation of religion and state. The Christian does not seek a forcible world conquest, but only to spread the gospel out of love. America was founded on the Judeo-Christian principle that rights derive from God, are bestowed on the individual who is created in the image of God, and that governments serve as a means toward protecting those God-given rights.
Walt Whitman wrote "There is no hour nor day, when evil may not enter upon the land, there is no bar against it, except for a large resolute breed of men." Internationalism, a euphemism for world government, stakes its claim on the abolition of war, which is as in- fantile a claim as calling for the abolition of crime, violence, or poverty. Only through freedom, where man is in control over his individual destiny, and where government serves to protect freedom, will war, crime, and poverty be reduced. These things will never be eliminated as long as human nature is as it is. In every generation, moral peo- ple understand that freedom must be defended against the criminal element of interna- tionalists who seek to control us and transform us by force.
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( Republished from Thunder out of Boston by Chuck Morse – Writers Club Press, 2000 -edited)
On Tuesday, September 21, 1999, the day after the Jewish observance of Yom Kippur, the American Jewish Congress (AJC) launched a media campaign in Boston to stop “handgun violence” as if a handgun, an inanimate object, could be violent. A powerful photo was published in The Boston Globe showing a young man blowing a shofar on the steps of the Massachusetts State House while he stood next to an enlarged signature card calling for the banning of privately owned guns. The photo and the campaign stirred emotions in light of several recent violent anti-Semitic incidences.
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is standing up for working people and for American principles of limited government when he stands up to the vastly expanded and over-paid public sector of his own state. Wisconsin government employees, like those in most other states, have organized themselves and have expanded both their authority and their economic perks at an unprecedented pace in recent decades. Governor Walker, elected by working taxpayers, is saying “enough.”
Working people, paying for the burgeoning public colossus out of their own pockets in the form of high taxes, hard earned money that would otherwise go to support their families, elected Walker along with a Republican majority legislature in Wisconsin to do the difficult job of scaling back the cost and the scope of their state government. Walker deserves the support of all working people as he challenges a special interest that has become entrenched with legal power and has grown in authority and wealth.
The Democrats demagogue the issue when they claim that Walker is anti-union. This is not about private unions, nor is this about the right of government employees to form associations, but rather this is about public sector taxpayer funded unions wielding legal power to gain economic and political advantages. This is about public employees organizing and supporting political causes and candidates that would further their interests and those interests are primarily financial which translates into public unions supporting candidates for office and political parties that advocate higher taxes which directly benefit them. Ideologically, the public unions have also supported programs and laws that would expand the authority of government thus leading to more jobs for them. Some public employees, particularly those who hold unelected positions, tend to hold the intellectual position that they are acting in the public interest when they expand their power over various aspects of the lives of the citizen.
The public employee has the same right as any American to advocate for a cause or candidates of their choosing but when they organize on the taxpayer’s dime, this represents a profound conflict of interest and is inherently corrupt and dangerous to democracy. Public sector jobs are not analogous to sweatshop jobs, contrary to liberal propaganda, as these jobs are generally good jobs on par with similar jobs in the private sector.
Public employees should remain free to form associations without the legal power to negotiate. Public employees, as they mostly do on the Federal level where there are no public unions, will be free to negotiate their own contracts with their employers. If abuse occurs, the public employee should appeal to a local commission set up by elected officials on a school board or by some other elected body. This will mean that good employees will get better pay based upon merit, bad employees will be fired, and the taxpayer will save a bundle. Right now, as is the case in New York City, tens of thousands of bad teachers who are no longer permitted to teach are nevertheless on the taxpayer’s payroll for life with benefits because of their union contracts. Make-shift and featherbedding should not occur on the public dime.
Governor Walker is being called “the Mubarak of the mid-west” by authoritarian minded liberals. In fact the exact opposite is the truth. It is partially the influence of the Tea Party movement, the movement for lower taxes and less government control, that the Egyptian people have gathered the courage to remove the big government of high taxing oligarch Mubarak. The same movement reverberates in Wisconsin and across the country. Freedom is infectious.
It occurs to this author that the US government promotes, and has always promoted and encouraged, the American public to believe in God. Not only believe in God, the US government, as a means of fostering that belief, regularly engages in public rituals, non-denominational rituals, that involve prayer to God. We as Americans have been praying to God, together and publicly as a people, from the founding of the Republic until this very day. The God to which we pray, furthermore, is and has always been based upon the Christian conception of God in the generic sense. Additionally, we as Americans continue to look to the judeo-Christian moral code for values and guidance this also is, and has always been, a matter of American public policy.
One example, one out of many that could be sited, will suffice to illustrate my point. Recently President Barack Obama, acting in his capacity as the elected head of the US government, spoke to the nation in a televised address which was made available to all Americans who cared to listen. President Obama concluded his address with the following statement: “May God bless the United States of America.” The Commander in Chief was praying to God. He was beseeching God to bless America. Many, if not most listeners to the President’s remarks, myself included, perhaps openly or perhaps silently or even unconsciously, concurred with the Presidents prayer by also beseeching God to bless our country. Most Americans responded to the President’s prayer with a version of “Amen.”
Every American President from Washington to Obama, and most of our State Governors and elected officials, pray to God and seek his guidance upon taking office. In a secular-religious ritual that has been acted out every year since the founding of the nation, newly elected officials will pray: “so help me God” when they “solemnly swear” to conduct the functions of the office they are about to assume. We as a people pledge allegiance to the flag, our national symbol, and to one nation “under God.” Our coinage states “In God we Trust.”
Implied in these national acts of worship, originally and presently, is the understanding that no American should ever be coerced in any way into believing in or worshiping God. Americans have been and remain free to not participate in these rituals and many choose not to. This had always been the case and was not a problem until it was turned into one by those who seek to ban belief in God, and public worship, from public life. They claim that belief in God, and public acts of worship, somehow infringe on their right to not believe. Their claim is false. Americans are free to believe or not believe in anything they choose to believe or not believe in.
My sense is that those who seek to ban worship of God from the public square have embraced an ideology that views God, and belief in God, as a competing factor standing in the way of their agenda. Many of the same people who seek to ban worship also rail against corporate interests and profit, and for the same reason. They seek, perhaps unconsciously and maybe unwittingly, to replace private ownership with ownership and control by what they hope will be a benevolent state. They perhaps sense that a God believing public would be less likely to look to their leadership which they believe is enlightened. They take an elastic view of the moral code that has fostered our freedom and that has served as a counterweight and balance to our libertarian tendencies. They realize that a nation that believes in God, and that regularly seeks his blessing, will more likely be a nation made up of self sufficient individuals who can think for themselves.
Americans should remember, in the words of President Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence, that “we are endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
Chuck Morse Amazon Kindle Page
The “Interagency Intelligence Committee on Terrorism” assessment, which was issued by the Department of Homeland Security in December of 2008, reported that Hezbollah terrorists were operating with a free hand inside the U.S. The report describes terrorist involvement in fundraising for so-called “charity projects” and engaging in criminal activities such as money laundering, smuggling, drug trafficking, fraud and extortion. The report estimates that the Iranian backed Hezbollah would likely increase in strength in the coming years inside the U.S. to the degree that it would pose as a national security threat by the year 2014. There is no record to be found of any arrests or deportations of any of these non citizen terrorists who are quietly going about their business in our communities undetected.
The terrorism report said "The Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah does not have a known history of fomenting attacks inside the U.S., but that could change if there is some kind of 'triggering' event." Might such a triggering event involve a strong stance, perhaps military in nature, on the part of the US if Iran obtains a nuclear bomb? General estimates indicate that the Iranian bomb is within reach of the fundamentalist Islamic Mullahs within a year or two. If and when the Mullahs get the bomb it is reasonable to assume that they will hit Tel Aviv and destroy Israel. Might the Hezbollah terror sleeper cells inside the U.S., viewing the destruction of Israel as a triggering event, respond by attacking the U.S. from within? If Israel is destroyed, and it probably will be destroyed if nothing is done very soon, the destruction of Israel would only whet the appetite of the fundamentalist Islamic Jihad who would no doubt respond by going after the big prize, the Great Satan U.S.
The 38 page terrorism report further indicates that “Hezbollah was being directed by the leadership in Lebanon as well as by Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).” The Washington Institute and several other reliable sources have written about the increasing ties between Iran and the radical Muslim Brotherhood which indicates that when it comes to Jihad against the Dar el-Harb, or the portion of the planet that has not yet submitted to Islamic control, the Sunnis and the Shiites stand together. The Muslim Brotherhood, which served as a spy network for the Nazis during World War II and which has spawned Hamas and al Qaeda, is Sunni while the Iranians, which spawned Hezbollah, are Shiites. Sunni Hamas leader Khaled Mashal visited Iran in February, 2009 where he stated that the Hamas controlled "people of Gaza . . . have always appreciated the political and spiritual support of the Iranian leaders and nation." Iranian state television reported that Mashal said that "Iran has definitely played a big role in the victory of the people of Gaza and is a partner in that victory."
Compounding the problem is the generally acknowledged notion that the Muslim Brotherhood, the secretive Saudi backed and Egyptian based terrorist society with tentacles reaching into over 70 countries, has extensive contacts inside most major American Islamic organizations. In America, the Muslim Brotherhood displays a peaceful and tolerant face, one that appeals to American liberals, and self hating Jews like New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who are hypnotized by the combination of flowery sounding talk of peace and tolerance as well as by the authoritarian undertones inherent in the Islamic ideology.
This same toxic mix appealed to the same liberals in previous generations who thought that Communism was idealistic. Meanwhile, the Muslim Brotherhood, funneling Saudi money into major American investments and endowments and into the mega Mosques that are springing up across the country, are laughing up their sleeves in the same contemptuous manner as did their communist counterparts in past generations. And all of this in the backdrop of Hezbollah, Iran, Hamas, and their associates preparing for the final Islamic assault and victory and their goal of ushering in their utopian Dar al-Islam, a world completely submitted to Islamic control and law.
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The Democrats lost control of the House of Representatives in the 2010 election for a number of reasons. The most obvious reason, and the essential reason why either party loses a congressional election, is related to the state of the economy. The Democrats had controlled the House since 2006 and the Democratic nominee for President, Barack Obama, had been elected in 2008 which meant that the Democrats were viewed as responsible for the economic stagnation in 2010. This impression was exacerbated by the fact that the Democratic controlled White House and Congress had expanded spending and had increased the deficit. It was assumed that the agenda of the Obama Administration and Democratic Congress was to continue to expand spending further into the future.
Obama’s first major initiative as president was to submit to Congress an enormous spending bill, one that he called the “stimulus” package which he sold to the American people as spending that would stimulate the economy and create jobs. By 2010, the economy had not noticeably improved and unemployment had entered into the double digits. To add insult to injury, Obama and the Democrats called for rescinding the “Bush” tax cuts. The electorate, outside of the shrinking numbers of ultra-liberals, understood that this meant a tax increase. The American people were in no mood for more taxes at a time of economic contraction and expanding deficits. By giving the de-facto tax increase the name “Bush”, Obama and the Democrats were betting that most Americans shared their anti-Bush derangement but most Americans saw through the ploy. It didn’t help matters that George Bush himself briefly came out of retirement with a best selling book and high polling numbers.
Obama, and tangentially the Democratic Congress, were responsible for ramming through the unpopular health care bill that has become known as ObamaCare. Obama and the congressional democrats accomplished this through a series of unsavory maneuvers. This gave the endeavor an unethical patina at a time when trust in government was at an all time low. It had become obvious that ObamaCare would not reduce the cost of healthcare and stories such as Medicare restricting certain coverage and the US Preventative Service Task Force recommending that women under 50 not be covered for mammograms and pap smears. These stories and others enforced the suspicion, not entirely groundless, that ObamaCare would lead to rationing as similar national plans have done elsewhere. These stories also re-enforced Sarah Palin’s contention that ObamaCare would lead to “death councils.”
Finally there was the issue of national security and the war against terrorism, an issue that had been effectively used by Scott Brown in Massachusetts against his liberal Democratic opponent Martha Coakley in the special election to fill the Senate seat vacated by the death of liberal lion Senator Ted Kennedy. The Democrats were perceived to be soft on the war on terrorism particularly after President Obama had come out against the enhanced interrogation tactics that had saved countless lives, had pushed moving the Guantanamo prison camp to suburban Chicago and to try the detainees in lower Manhattan. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolatano didn’t help the image of weakness when she insisted that the “system worked like clockwork” when a terrorist with a bomb in his underwear almost blew up a passenger plane on Christmas, 2009.
As the election of 2010 approached, there was an enormous desire on the part of the electorate for hope and change.
Henry Adams, grandson of President John Quincy Adams, in his classic late 19th century political autobiography “The Education of Henry Adams” defined politics as “the systematic organization of hatreds.” In that spirit the Democrats, now facing possibly devastating losses in the upcoming mid-term elections this November, have resorted to ugly and groundless charges of racism against their Republican opponents. Such vicious charges serve two purposes. The charge of racism energizes the liberal base by appealing to the general hatred that liberals have toward conservatives and at the same time the charge smears the Republicans. They get two for the price of one. Many liberals actually and sincerely believe that conservatives are racist because they do not support the liberal authoritarian approach to improving race relations.
In making this despicable charge in a period leading up to a national election the Democrats are showing their true colors. They will do anything to win. They couldn’t care less whether playing the race card rips at the basic fabric of our nations social structure and strains our racial relationships. Racism certainly does exist in this country, it always has, which is all the more reason why we should work toward more harmonious relationships and not use the sensitive issue of racial disagreements as a political football.
The charge of racism against conservatives has been leveled by some liberal commentators on my radio program The Fairness Doctrine - Left/Right Radio for the Radical Center. One charge that has been leveled is that conservatives criticize President Barack Obama because they don’t like him because they don’t like black people. This falsity is usually couched in sophisticated sounding jargon dressed up with vague references to various scientific sounding statistics and polls.
The lie is targeted particularly to those who generally identify themselves as part of the tea party movement but, by implication, it targets all Republicans and conservatives. It sickens me to have to respond but I must. Do liberals think that the tea partiers, or Republicans, or conservatives, would be equally critical of the President if the President were Allen Keyes? The conservative Dr. Keyes, who ran for President and who ran against Barack Obama for the U. S. Senate in Illinois is also black. I’m not going too far out on a limb by suggesting that conservatives would be whole heartedly supportive of the policies of a President Allen Keyes who is, to re-iterate, black. It’s much easier to change the subject of the unpopular and ineffective policies of President Obama by attacking his critics as racist.
The NAACP, at their recent National Convention, predictably charged the tea party with racism in a July 14th resolution condemning “racist elements” in the movement. This was the same group that ran a television commercial during the 2000 presidential election accusing George W. Bush of responsibility for the horrendous racist killing of James Byrd because as Governor of Texas Bush did not support hate crimes legislation. The NAACP ad featured chains dragged behind a moving pickup truck, which was how James Byrd was murdered, with the voice of Byrd’s daughter heard over the clanging accusing Bush of murder. Bush responded quite appropriately when he pointed out that as Governor of Texas he supported a very effective hate crime law against the perpetrators of that awful crime, the death penalty.
No doubt the Democrats, after scouring the national landscape, will pick up a few rocks where they will find a few real live genuine racist specimens. Either that or they will parse every utterance of every conservative who has the courage to speak to try to discern an abstract hint of racism. Once they find their specimen the confused and befuddled soul will be then be held up to the glaring national spotlight and labeled as a conservative. Americans will then be informed that the very existence of this person is all that is needed to prove that conservatives and Republicans really do think, even if subconsciously, that black people are inferior to white people.
Pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Fla. has stated his intention to burn a Qur’an as an act of protest to commemorate September 11, 2001, a date in which 19 fundamentalist Islamic hijackers turned passenger planes into missiles exploding them into the World Trade Center in Manhattan. General David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan has responded to the scheduled protest by stating that the burning of a Qu’ran would incite violence that would endanger the lives of American men and women in uniform in Afghanistan. For this reason I call upon Pastor Jones to not burn the Qu’ran at this time. Yet this episode offers a unique learning moment for the western democracies.
In explaining his impending action, Pastor Jones stated "We must send a clear message to the radical element of Islam. We will no longer be controlled and dominated by their fears and threats." The burning of an American flag or the burning or the desecration of a Christian cross is a despicable act and the protesters should be condemned. Yet unlike those who would burn a Qur’an, those protesters need not worry that they will be beheaded. They know that American or Christian leaders would not sentence them to death nor would western leaders use the protest action to incite violence in the populace at large. And this is the basic point of Pastor Jones protest.
Islamic fundamentalists have been so successful in their international campaign of threats and terror that the world is now cowering in fear. The Islamists have successfully employed terror and the threat of terror to implement a worldwide cultural dictatorship. While libraries are filled with books and articles criticizing America and Christianity, and museums contain degrading images of Jesus such as “piss Christ“ which is an American taxpayer funded crucifix in a jar of urine or a portrait of the Virgin Mary and the baby Jesus made out of cow dung, which was on display at the Brooklyn Museum of Art, few dare to tread forward and criticize the founder of Islam or the doctrines contained in the Islamic holy books, the doctrines that were embraced by the September 11th Islamic terrorists. What more evidence is needed that the judeo-Christian west is tolerant while Islam is not?
Pastor Jones also makes the case that the Qu’ran is satanic and that “Islam is of the Devil.” Whether from a religious or from a secular perspective, a case that he is essentially correct in this assertion. Fortunately most Muslims, particularly most American Muslims are not strictly observant in terms of adhering to the literal doctrines of their faith. They have, fortunately, accepted westernized and secularized interpretations of their texts in terms of the meaning of Jihad, which most westernized Muslims take to mean personal improvement, or other concepts such as Sharia, Murtadd, or Apostacy, or Taquya or deception in a non Muslim country. Secularized Muslims ignore the anti-Semitism, homophobic, patricidal, and un-democratic aspects of their faith and this is to be applauded.
But at the same time much of the Islamic world continues to adhere to the literal meaning of their holy doctrine and it could be argued that, in that context, those doctrines are satanic. Even an atheist, if confronted with many of these doctrines in their full meaning, would conclude that they are evil. In this context, burning the Qur’an, or more appropriately exposing the doctrines of the Qur’an and other Islamic texts that are viewed by Muslims to be the irrefutable word of God, is as valid and, indeed, as urgent, as it was to expose the doctrines contained in Mein Kampf, written by Adolf Hitler. To have exposed Mein Kampf to the light of day would have been no more anti-German than exposing the Qu’ran and the Islamic holy books to daylight would be anti Muslim. We are talking here about a doctrine that calls for the death of all non believers and we had better damn well understand that.
The Affordable Care Act, passed by Congress in 2010 a very bad idea on several levels. Indeed the new law would be a disaster for the American people.
For starters, let’s examine the cost of the law to every American citizen as well as the negative impact the law would have on the economy as a whole. Rep. Paul Ryan estimates that the plan would add $701 billion to the deficit based on an estimated $1.4 trillion in spending over the next 10 years with spending to increase in subsequent years. A large portion of the spending involves $460 billion in subsidies as an inducement for participation in the Obamacare exchanges. The subsidized “free” healthcare encourages unemployment as a job would no longer be needed to get health coverage. Instead, the cost of the insurance would be borne by the taxpayer. This is a gift to big business.
And, incidentally, laws are already in place that prevents an employer from asking about pre-existing health conditions which means that employed people receive such coverage. This is why less than 10 thousand people have applied for Obamacare with pre-existing conditions. Under the Obama plan, the cost of this coverage is transferred from the corporation to the taxpayer, another gift to big business. Republicans have suggested rational alternatives in which the poor and the uninsurable with pre-existing conditions would be covered by a mandatory pool funded by insurance companies on a state level with some subsidies. Under this plan the taxpayer would be off the hook, the insurance companies would have catastrophic cases off their rolls which would drive down premiums, and the bill would still be paid by the insurance companies, not the taxpayer.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that the law would result on the loss of 650,000 jobs mostly in the health care industry and related health industries. The law mandates that insurance companies mandate 80% of their revenue to insurance which would put little companies out of business or force them to lay people off, something that is already occurring. This is another gift to big business; in this case the big insurance companies.
Obamacare plans to offer coverage to 30 million Americans through Medicaid which has been a program that has offered block grants to the States, which then provide matching funds, as a means to cover the poor. By expanding the program, Obamacare would transfer funds from Medicaid, a program that has been paid for by working people to cover their health needs upon retirement, to a program that has not been funded. The CBO estimates that the increased government spending on Medicaid under the Obama law would be $75 to $100 billion per year, a bill that would be covered either by a tax increase or an expansion in the national debt. Additionally, the states would be required to increase their spending, and to levy state taxes to cover the expense which is why over 20 states are trying to opt out. Meanwhile Medicare coverage is already being cut back on the elderly.
In fact, through Medicare the government under Obamacare would restrict doctors from providing various treatments and penalizing them if they do. One of the main selling points of Obamacare was that the government would stop this practice by private insurance companies yet the government plan would do the same thing. This would constitute the direct interference by the government into the private doctor-patient relationship. Republicans have proposed regulating the insurance companies while leaving insurance and medicinal decisions, in the hands of the private individual where it belongs. This also constitutes the rationing of healthcare that the defenders of Obamacare have gone to such lengths to deny.
There is much more to examine, but I will leave off by mentioning the most controversial part of Obamacare and that is the mandatory purchase of insurance. This law, which will not save the consumer money, constitutes the first time in American history in which the citizen is required by law to buy something. This centerpiece of Obamacare has already been declared unconstitutional by Virginia Federal Judge Henry Hudson. Let’s hope that more Americans wake up to the constitutional threat that this law poses.
It’s been over two years since President George W. Bush retired to his modest and ecologically correct ranch in Crawford Texas yet Bush Derangement Syndrome (BDS) continues to course furiously through the veins and arteries of American liberals. It distorts debate and contorts the minds of those possessed of this tenacious demon. President Barack Obama seems almost irrelevant to them. In their Bush centered universe they contrast Obama’s success with Bush’s alleged failures while blaming Obama’s failures on Bush. Of course George Bush was not the first president to attract such strong emotions. John Adams was both loved and loathed in his day.
Syndicated columnist and psychiatrist Charles Krauthammer was right when he coined the term Bush Derangement Syndrome. There does appear to be something deranged, something discernibly unbalanced in the rantings and ravings of the BDSer and that same derangement also includes the same perverse obsession with former Vice President Dick Cheney. Over this past holiday I heard a BDSer friend refer to Cheney as a “traitor” who should be executed. I heard another BDSer friend launch a bizarre tirade over Bush “making money” from oil in Iraq as she breathlessly proceeded to babble a stream of kookyconspiracy theories. The mere mention of Bush’s name turned these two intelligent and sober people into Linda Blair in The Exorcist.
I heard another BDS friend declare to me that he would “never step foot again in Florida” because Florida was where Bush “stole the election with the help of his rich right-wing friends on the tSupreme Court.” Referring to Bush as rich, which is an item of standard BDS faire, overlooks the fact that his 2000 opponent Al Gore was probably richer and that his 2004 opponent John Kerry was certainly richer. Gore’s father was on the board of Occidental Petroleum and was president of Island Creek Coal, a corporation that was known for strip-mining mountaintops. While Bush and Cheney were allegedly conspiring to make money from oil, Gore was receiving substantial sums from an oil inheritance. Teresa Heinz, John Kerry’s ketchup heiress wife inherited at least a half a billion from the estate of her late husband John B. Heinz III. Former President Bill Clinton receives a quarter of a million for speaking engagements while former President Bush declines fees for his. Not that there is anything wrong with being rich.
So why the obsession over Bush? Surely it could not have been the contested 2000 presidential election in Florida. Bush was ahead when the polls closed on Election Day even though CBS News anchor Dan Rather declared the state for Gore on national television in front of a map of a blue Florida. Dan Rather did this an hour before the polls closed in the conservative western Florida panhandle resulting in thousands of likely Bush voters staying home. It came out later that Gore had never at any time been ahead in Florida. Instead of calling for a statewide recount which Gore was entitled to in such a close race, Gorecherry-picked a couple of friendly Democratic counties with the hope that partisan clerks would find enough votes for him amongst the spoiled ballots, a trick that was later successfully pulled off by Al Franken in Minnesota. All the while the Gore team assiduously worked to delay and to disqualify overseas military ballots. The Supreme Court finally stepped in and put a stop to the charade by ruling on a constitutional principle that liberals assumedly support, at least in circumstances favorable to them. That principle was “one man one vote” which ensured that no voter was disenfranchised. As a parting shot at Bush the Gore people left town spreading vicious lies about Bush Republicans using racist tactics, a bigoted myth that would be resurrected later as a cudgel against Bush.
Thus the BDFers set the stage for the next eight years. Their unquenchable lust for power and revenge tore at the fabric of American society and jeopardized and weakened America’s prestige in the world at a time of war. When it came to stoking up the Bush derangement the ends justified the means. The phenomena involved more than mere partisan hatred of a Republican president. Certainly presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush had to cope with their share of partisan haters. What was it then about Bush that caused some BDFers to quietly cheer when reports of American military casualties in Iraq came in because it meant a bad day for Bush?
Was it Bush derangement that caused many of his opponents to side with the point of view that America was wrong to engage in military action in Iraq? Many nations, particularly in Europe, chose not to lift a finger against the Islamic threat while they condemned America for fighting what was also their battle. When the Bush Administration responded to 9/11 by first toppling the Taliban in Afghanistan and then Saddam Hussein in Iraq, many prominent Democrats sided with those who believed that America was the aggressor. At first most Democratic leaders supported the Iraq war. They vociferously condemned Saddam for developing what they contended were weapons of mass destruction and often in sharper terms than Bush. They spoke of the urgent need to militarily defeat Saddam Hussein with his human rights atrocities and rape rooms.
After the liberation of Baghdad, and in the midst of a dangerous and difficult military operation, these same Democrats effected an about face and Bush derangement once again raged with the launching of a new and ugly myth, one that damaged America in the world and that aided and abetted our enemies. That myth was that Bush lied about the weapons of mass destruction. While men and women in uniform were fighting and dying, the enemies of Bush gleefully pointed out that he was wrong about WMD which must have meant, according to their logic, that he had lied. Even more bizarre conspiracy theories were spun out to explain why Bush sought to topple Saddam including his alleged need for revenge for Saddam’s assassination attempt on his father. Perhaps the most iconic of liberal myths was that the Bush and Dick Cheney sought to remove Saddam so they could somehow “make money” in the oil business.
Other various and sundry myths included the one that had Bush not responding well enough to hurricane Katrina because he didn’t like African-American men and women. These sorts of conspiracy theories are particularly insidious when they sow racial discord and mobilize groups based on shared fears and hatreds. Bush haters bellowed in rage against the Bush tax rebates even though the liberal Boston Globe admitted that the rebates helped turn the economy around from recession. I don’t recall any takers to a challenge tossed out by conservative pundits at the time to liberals enraged over the tax rebates to send their checks back to the IRS but maybe I just missed the news that day. Bush was blamed for bailing out the corporations, the vaunted “corporate interests” in the final months of his presidency when confronted with news of an imminent meltdown. President Obama has wisely continued with those policies and has taken credit for their success.
I contend that the very root of the Bush derangement is located in a single remark that George Bush made during one of his election debates early in the 2000 campaign. That was when George Bush, responding to a question from the moderator, stated that the philosopher that had most influenced his life was Jesus Christ. I distinctly remember the howls of rage over this comment as well as the truely hellish quality of those howls. This gets to the core of Bush derangement in my opinion. There is nothing the left despises more than an individual who genuinely believes in God as opposed to belief in the State. Such a person cannot be easily manipulated or compromised.
The freedom movement that started in Tunisia and quickly spread to Egypt was really started in Afghanistan and Iraq. President George W. Bush, the liberator of Kabul and Baghdad, got the ball rolling by freeing those nations from the brutal jackboot of the Taliban and the Baath Socialists. The war in Afghanistan and Iraq represented the first time that a freedom oriented western power, the United States, had liberated an Arab or Islamic country from despotism. President George Bush, his administration, and our American men and women in uniform are the true heroes behind the events unfolding in Egypt and in the Arab and Islamic world.
None of these events would have been possible if Sadaam Hussein had remained in power in Iraq and if the Taliban had remained in power in Afghanistan. Certainly the difficult work of liberating those nations is not complete, and the job may not be completed for many years if not decades to come, but the effort is already paying dividends. Freedom is a contagious thing and these were just wars. President Barack Obama also deserves a great deal of credit as, in spite of his public protestations to the contrary while running for the Presidency, he has continued soldering on and he is fighting the good fight.
Shortly after the US launched the effort to liberate Iraq, the Syrians were driven out of Lebanon and Libya gave up its nuclear program. For the first time the Iraqi people experienced freedom of the press and this included laptops and cell phones. These developments further opened the door to the internet which spread across Asia and Africa. The move toward freedom was furthered when the Arab and Muslim people saw that the United States was not going to cut and run from Iraq and Afghanistan but would stay the course through thick and thin. The impression was enhanced by the Bush surge in Iraq and the Obama surge in Afghanistan. The Arab and Muslim street became convinced over time that America planned to see freedom through and thus Muslims became emboldened.
Not since Franklin D. Roosevelt called for the unconditional surrender of the Nazis and not since Ronald Reagan defined the Soviet Union as the Evil Empire and preceded to defeat it without a firing a shot had America stood up so strongly for the principle of freedom as did Bush in Iraq and Afghanistan. The growing freedom movement in Africa and Asia is indeed the collapse of the third leg in the stool of the international socialist experiment. The first leg was kicked out by Roosevelt with the defeat of the Nazi Socialists in 1945, the second when Reagan caused the Soviet collapse and the iron curtain lifted across Europe in 1989, and now the final leg is crumbling in the third world as the socialist dictators grab their gold bars and flee.
We are witnessing a capitalist revolution in the third world as the people are demanding the creation of all of the institutions that are often taken for granted in the west. They want jobs, opportunity, business ownership, free institutions, free market, limited government and elections. Certainly very serious dangers remain from the regressive Muslim Brotherhood an their various militant terrorist adjuncts and allies. Yet the sense from the street is that these old political ideas have not gained enough traction and this has been enhanced by the brutal response in Iran to the election there and the threat of a Hezbollah takeover in Lebanon. Which nation will be next? Maybe Saudi Arabia? Maybe Cuba?
Soviet archives, declassified shortly after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1990, indicate that in 1973 Yasser Arafat's PLO operatives were advised by North Vietnamese political trainers in Hanoi to promote the so-called "two-state solution" as a negotiating tactic, as opposed to their previous policy of calling for the complete destruction of Israel. Arafat admired the North Vietnamese for their ability to garner sympathy and support within the American left, and he sought to emulate that success. By 1973, it had become clear that the crude PLO rhetoric, which included calls to drive the Jews into the sea and slaughter them all, was not winning any friends. Ho Chi Minh's advice worked like a charm while the PLO terrorism against Israel nevertheless continued unabated.
Palestinian terrorist Abu Iyad, in his memoir published in Arabic and entitled "Palestinian Without A Motherland," recounts North Vietnamese political advisers suggesting to him that the PLO "stop talking about annihilating Israel and instead turn your terror war into a struggle for human rights. Then you will have the American people eating out of your hand." The North Vietnamese had experienced amazing success in terms of convincing the American left that they were not engaged in an aggressive war of conquest against South Vietnam but were rather spearheading an effort to liberate the South from American oppression and establish independence for Vietnam under their rule.
The North Vietnamese propaganda failed to mention the fact that Ho Chi Minh, whose real name was Nyugen ai Quoc, had been a Soviet agent for 20 years before he became a public figure in North Vietnam in 1945. Hindsight indicates that the South Vietnamese people did not feel either liberated or independent due to the North Vietnamese conquest in 1975, as evidenced by the hundreds of thousands of South Vietnamese who braved shark-infested waters and pirates in their quest to escape the socialist paradise by getting on rickety boats. Neither did the people of Laos or Cambodia appear to appreciate the wonders associated with the communist takeover of their countries. The collectivization programs caused one of the worst genocides of the century, as radical Marxist Pol Pot collectivized Cambodia leading to millions of deaths.
The PLO was no doubt encouraged when the U.S. Congress, having elected a new crop of young liberals in 1974, including Patrick Leahy and Joe Biden, cut off all aid to South Vietnam in March of 1975, which led to a full-scale invasion from the north and the fall of Saigon two months later. This disgraceful betrayal of America's ally occurred two years after the signing of the Paris Peace Accord in January of 1973, a treaty that resulted in the end of the war and the full withdrawal of American troops. The sellout of South Vietnam by American liberals, both on the street and in Congress, no doubt fostered hope in the souls of the PLO and their allies that American liberals would one day also sell out Israel – and they had reason to be encouraged.
Ho's advise, which was to employ Marxist rhetoric when describing the Palestinian Arabs as oppressed and occupied, while referring to Israel in language that was probably borrowed from the chapters pertaining to Jews in Hitler's "Mein Kampf," a very popular book in the Arab world, was wildly successful in terms of garnering support from the international left including, to varying degrees, the Jewish left and even the Israeli left. The pressure in the ensuing decades led to the Oslo Accords, signed by Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yatzak Rabin in a White House lawn ceremony presided over by President Bill Clinton on Sept. 13, 1993. On that same day, in a pre-taped interview that ran on Jordan TV, Arafat explained in Arabic that: "Since we cannot defeat Israel in war, we do it in stages. We take any and every territory that we can of Palestine and establish sovereignty there, and we use it as a springboard to take more. When the time comes, we can get the Arab nations to join us for the final blow against Israel."
Friday, December 9, 2011
While as a Jew I do not believe in the divinity of Jesus, as an American I acknowledge the pivotal importance that Jesus and his ministry played in the establishment of our great Republic. This is why I am proud to celebrate Christmas which is, after all, the celebration of the birth of a Jewish baby.
Thursday, December 8, 2011
Progressive author and linguist George Lakoff follows the old Frankfort School smear that conservatives are secret fascists and are mentally ill. The Frankfort School, otherwise known as the Institute for Social Research at Columbia University, influenced liberal intellectual circles in the 1960’s and included as its members such left-wing icons as Theodore Adorno, Wilhelm Reich, and Herbert Marcuse.
In this statement Lakoff displays a fundamental distrust progressives hold of human freedom when he claims that a robust Public, which is a euphemism for an authoritarian State, is required in order for citizens to care about each other and act responsibly. Conservatives view government as a means to maintain law and order and the social structure that allows citizens the freedom to do that which comes naturally, caring about each other and acting responsibly out of self-interest.