Sunday, 30 June 2013

Anthony Weiner's Fancy Pants








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Israeli to al-Jazeera host: “We were here when your forefathers were drinking wine, burying their daughters alive and worshipping idols”





BareNakedIslam posted: "Dr. Mordechai Kedar of Bar-Ilan University defends the Jewish history of Jerusalem for over 3000 years as well as the right of Israelis to settle in Judea and Samaria (West Bank). Apparently, he also understands the quran better than the interviewer and w"

New post on BARE NAKED ISLAM

Israeli to al-Jazeera host: "We were here when your forefathers were drinking wine, burying their daughters alive and worshipping idols"

by BareNakedIslam

Dr. Mordechai Kedar of Bar-Ilan University defends the Jewish history of Jerusalem for over 3000 years as well as the right of Israelis to settle in Judea and Samaria (West Bank). Apparently, he also understands the quran better than the interviewer and wipes the floor with the guy in perfect Arabic.

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BareNakedIslam | June 30, 2013 at 10:13 pm | Categories: Islam and the Jews | URL: http://wp.me/p276zM-VeS

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New Deal Utopianism

New Deal Utopianism
By George Leef June 19, 2013

Back to the Land: Arthurdale, FDR's New Deal, and the Costs of Economic Planning by C.J. Maloney (Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley, 2011), 292 pages.

Drive south from Morgantown, West Virginia, and you soon come to the little town of Arthurdale. At the outskirts of town, there is a roadside plaque informing those who stop to read it that Arthurdale was "Established in 1933-34 under the Federal Homestead Act." We also learn that it was a "pet project" of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and that the town was created to "assist the unemployed through self-sufficient farming and handicrafts."

That certainly makes Arthurdale sound wholesome and quaint -- proof that the federal government has the ability to improve the nation. As usual, however, there is much more to the story, and in Back to the Land: Arthurdale, FDR's New Deal, and the Costs of Economic Planning, C.J. Maloney, a writer for Bloomberg News, gives us a commendably thorough and illuminating history of Arthurdale. The town was a gigantic economic flop that was kept alive only with transfusions of taxpayer money. Far from an advertisement for the glories of government social intervention, the Arthurdale story is a testament to the social and economic damage that such intervention does.

Maloney begins with that most horrendous of all government interventions ­ war. World War I caused many economic changes, and one of them was that the price of coal rose dramatically, especially after Woodrow Wilson managed to drag the United States into the conflict. That led to a huge expansion of the American coal industry. Working in the coal industry paid rather well compared with the hard life of Appalachia, and many families were drawn to the "coal camps." Coal prices remained high after the war but began to fall in 1926. Many workers left the industry, but others were "stranded" in the increasingly decrepit camps. Matters were made considerably worse by the militant posture of the United Mine Workers, which repeatedly called strikes against declining wages, refusing to recognize that consumers simply wouldn't pay the old prices that made higher wages possible. The coal fields were riven by violence, hunger, and desperation.

As the Great Depression settled on the nation, conditions went from bad to unspeakable. Journalists wrote about the hungry, ill-clad children; the cheap, filthy houses; and the lack of sanitation. Among those who read about this extreme poverty was Eleanor Roosevelt, wife of soon-to-be president Franklin Roosevelt. She was determined to help the suffering people, and one of the earliest of the New Deal programs greatly appealed to her, namely the Division of Subsistence Homesteads (DSH). She and many other Progressives who were intent on remaking America along collectivistic lines, saw DSH as a perfect opportunity to show how wonderful things could be under their philosophy. The idea was that if people would leave cities and industrial employment and go "back to the land," clean, moral, natural life would replace the nasty conditions under capitalism. Arthurdale (and many other planned communities) would lead the way.

Many years before, in 1911, Roosevelt himself had written a piece for the New York Globe extolling the Rousseauian notion that Americans should "return to the land" because, he claimed, those who live on farms "have more time to think and study." He had never lived on a farm, much less done the tedious and exhausting work that farming involves. His was just a romantic notion, a yearning for an imagined golden past. He was full of such foolish ideas, and they flew out of the Pandora's box of his New Deal like a swarm of vampire bats.

The subsistence-homesteads concept also appealed to one of Roosevelt's top advisers, Rexford Guy Tugwell. Tugwell, trained in the Progressive economic theories of Richard Ely, had gone to the Soviet Union, and like so many other western intellectuals, came back convinced that central economic planning was the wave of the future. He was eager to show that the traditional American beliefs in individualism and free enterprise were outmoded and harmful. Arthurdale would help him prove his point that socialistic, communitarian life was far better. It just had to succeed, no matter the cost.

It is noteworthy that America had had quite a few of these collectivist/agrarian societies in its past. Maloney provides some of their history. All failed rapidly, foundering on the rocks of human nature. They did not, however, have the backing of government officials eager to spend vast amounts of money taken from taxpayers to shore up their idealistic experiments. The DSH communities would.

Funding for DSH came in a single paragraph inserted into the hastily enacted National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933. It stated that $25 million was "made available to the president, to be used by him through such agencies as he may establish and under such regulations as he may make, for making loans for and otherwise aiding in the purchase of subsistence homesteads." It did not matter that there has never been any authority under the Constitution for Congress to make such appropriations for the president to do as he pleases. Five days later Roosevelt issued an executive order placing responsibility for this program with the secretary of the interior.


Blunder after blunder

Government officials promptly went to work designing new towns. They were no good at it, of course. Why should anyone expect bureaucrats to know anything about the numerous problems and tasks building a new town entailed? Maloney recounts the numerous blunders they made, beginning with the fact that the planners chose a poor site for the farming the people were expected to do. Moreover, because of a porous rock stratum, the water supply was unsafe. Next, the prefabricated houses that an eager official purchased to get the project moving quickly would have been suitable as beach houses, but they were a lousy choice for the cold winters in northern West Virginia. The houses, once delivered, did not fit on the foundations that had been prepared for them. Many of the houses, once constructed, suffered water damage because the officials did not think to have downspouts attached. This expensive comedy of errors continued on and on.

Homes that were built in the later stages of Arthurdale's development were much better ­ so much so that they put most of the other housing in the area to shame. They were faced with native stone and had all the modern amenities, which rankled people in neighboring towns who were not lucky enough to be among the favored few. Moreover, the question of exactly how the residents would pay for their houses was unsettled a year after Arthurdale was begun. Because construction was costing far more than originally estimated, officials floated the idea of selling people their houses not on the basis of what they cost, but of what purchasers could afford to pay.

And how were the residents chosen? Faculty members at West Virginia University devised an eight-page questionnaire for anyone who wanted to apply for Arthurdale. (Large numbers did.) Applicants also had to go through extensive interviews that included intimate personal questions. One of the nonpersonal questions was whether the applicant had had any farming experience, an important consideration given that the residents were to engage in subsistence farming. Of those selected, however, a large majority had no farming experience. The entire process, Maloney writes, "had a healthy dose of the subjective and arbitrary." A federal directive instructed the local officials to favor applicants "who seem likely to welcome supervision and guidance from project administrators." In other words, they should discriminate against self-reliant individualists.

In a way, though, that discrimination made sense because the Arthurdalians were expected to be obedient. They were not allowed to modify their homes or grounds in any way (without approval that was very hard to obtain), and they could be removed from the community if they displeased their federal overlords, as five families were. Among the things they were forbidden to do was to sell any of their crops to outsiders. That would be inconsistent with the collectivistic philosophy behind the project. Secretary of Agriculture Henry Wallace, a committed socialist, directed that crops be grown only for "home consumption or consumption of their neighbors in the community." Any excess was the property of the government.

Arthurdale's adults were also supposed to have work other than tending their small plots of land ­ after all, the growing season there was only about 130 days. But what would they do? The planners in Washington tried many different ideas but each proved to be a failure. In anticipation of the famous line from the movie Field of Dreams, ("If you build it, they will come"), DSH officials built a 10,000-square-foot factory. It wasn't used until June 1936, when it was leased to a company that made vacuum cleaners. It provided jobs for 29 residents ­ until the company closed it during the sharp economic contraction ("the depression within the Depression") that began in 1937. But the bureaucrats were undaunted. They proceeded to spend more taxpayer money to build two more, substantially larger factories. Little use was ever made of either facility.



Arthurdale Inn

Another financial blunder was the Arthurdale Inn, built on the site of an old mansion that Tugwell had ordered destroyed. It provided jobs for a few residents, but the only customers it had were visiting federal bureaucrats and Eleanor Roosevelt, who frequently stayed there while checking up on her "pet project." Once again, taxpayers shelled out a lot in return for virtually no value.


Naturally, there were children to be educated. The officials in charge of Arthurdale would not allow "their" children to be schooled with other West Virginia kids. No, they wanted a school just for them and proceeded to build, at huge expense -- although not very competently ­ a state-of-the-art school. Then they chose a woman as principal who was a true believer in progressive education theory. Education, in her Deweyesque view, was to be used to shape young minds according to the collectivist philosophy of the New Deal. She believed in "learning by doing" rather than old-fashioned "book learning" and was determined to socialize students differently than in the past. She had the students sent out into the surrounding fields when the weather was good, and when it wasn't, the boys were sent to home economics and the girls to shop class. Grading was taboo.

Eventually the people of Arthurdale, even though they had been selected for their compliance, rebelled at the pseudo education their children were getting and demanded that the school comply with West Virginia standards. It wasn't just the miserable education that the parents were upset about; they were equally upset over the entitlement mentality the school was fostering in their children. Maloney writes, "The settlers in Arthurdale were lucky in escaping the debilitating effects of welfare before it could become too deeply ingrained within them or their children."

Finally, with the country's entry into World War II, the administration's interest in Arthurdale and the other experimental communities evaporated. The houses were sold to the homesteaders at a huge loss. They had cost on average more than $16,000 to build and were sold at prices ranging from $750 to $1,249. The factories and farmland were sold for nominal amounts ­ $1. Arthurdale had been a stupendous loss for the taxpayers. And yet the visionaries continued to defend their planned communities. In 1958 Tugwell gave a speech in which he argued that government was superior to private enterprise because "we provided sewer and water systems, schools, parks, and other utilities. No speculator did any of those things."

Maloney responds to that with a devastating counterattack. In truth, many "speculators" who built homes did provide those good things, and they did so without any use of coercion to take money from unwilling people. In particular he points to James Grimes, a Pittsburgh businessman who built durable homes (and whose son was instrumental in Arthurdale). "It is men like Grimes," Maloney writes, "who built this country and created (rather than destroyed) wealth in the process; he made a profit while making a city." Private enterprise uses resources wisely and efficiently when the state keeps hands off. In contrast, "Those responsible for Arthurdale were like a plague of locusts, consuming far more than they gave."

Back to the Land is a book with a message that vast numbers of Americans need to grasp: When government goes beyond its purposes of defending our liberty and property, it is certain to be wasteful, arrogant, and authoritarian.

This article was originally published in the February 2013 edition of
Future of Freedom.

http://fff.org/explore-freedom/article/new-deal-utopianism/

Why Are People So Distrustful of Big Government?


Why Are People So Distrustful of Big Government?
Conor Friedersdorf
Jun 18 2013


NSA surveillance poses a particularly thorny challenge to conservative War on Terror hawks, who are forced to confront the tension between two things they believe: 1) The Obama Administration shouldn't ever be trusted. 2) We're at war, and the Obama Administration must be trusted with extraordinary powers to stop the enemy, despite the theoretical potential for abuse. 

It is tough to advance both arguments at once.

If the Obama Administration can be trusted to put the names of American citizens on a secret targeted-killing list and amass a secret database that holds years of our private digital communications, why object to a non-secret panel that reviews the efficacy of medical procedures? And if they're using the IRS to target their enemies, why not the NSA?

Charles Krauthammer comes as close to having it both ways as anyone. "The object is not to abolish these vital programs, it's to fix them," he wrote in a Washington Post column on NSA surveillance. "Not exactly easy to do amid the current state of national agitation -- provoked largely because such intrusive programs require a measure of trust in government, and this administration has forfeited that trust amid an unfolding series of scandals and a basic problem with truth-telling."

Tension cleverly evaded, if left unresolved. It's little surprise that Kevin Drum of Mother Jones flagged that same column. But I must say that I was surprised and disheartened by the particulars of the rebuttal Drum offered. In fact, it's emblematic of an attitude that helps explain our out-of-control surveillance state.

The headline: " Today's Chin Scratcher: Why Are People So Distrustful of Big Government." Here's Drum, channeling Krauthammer:

To summarize: People are groundlessly suspicious of vital panopticonish surveillance programs, and this is all due to Barack Obama's weaselly ways, not to the Republican Party's relentless 30-year campaign to destroy the public's faith in domestic programs of all sorts, mock the very idea that government accomplishes anything useful, and pander to the black-helicopter conspiracy theories of the Glenn Beck crowd.
Sorry Charlie, that's not going to fly. If you spend decades inventing scandals out of whole cloth and insisting that big government is a menace to liberty, don't be surprised when it turns out that an awful lot of people no longer have any trust in government. You reap what you sow.

It isn't that Drum's comments are totally off-base. Conservative elites do sometimes verge into frivolous, conspiratorial nonsense when they vilify government. It is ironic when they complain that a rank-and-file they've taught to mistrust government is too distrustful of government efforts they favor. At the same time, regardless of whatever nonsense Glenn Beck is spewing this week, it is perfectly rational to mistrust big government, particularly in the realm of national security.

Drum writes as if that isn't true.

Elsewhere, he's been diligently trying to nail down the facts about exactly what the NSA is doing. But like so many American commentators, he proceeds as if Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald, and others are wrong to proceed from the premise that "big government" is untrustworthy. In doing so, he is the one who isn't following the facts where they lead.

Why should reality-based, empirically minded Americans like Drum be distrustful of big government, insist on transparency, be on constant guard against abuses, and object to the NSA's surveillance capabilities, even if, technically, there are policy safeguards in place to prevent abuses? For the same reason an alcoholic with three years dry raises red flags when he stocks his liquor cabinet with promises that he'll never have more than one drink: It always ends badly.

Forget the ideological battle between liberals and conservatives about the size of government, the social safety net, the commerce clause, and all the rest. That's not the kind of big government this column is about. Let's review some hard, indisputable facts about recent American history:
  • The U.S. government is currently imprisoning dozens of people believed to present no threat to national security at Guantanamo Bay, where mere innocence has never been sufficient to be released.
  • Innocent Muslim Americans in New York City were subject to a secret program of racial profiling and spying, initiated by the Bloomberg Administration and known to the Obama Administration -- indeed, Obama's top counterterrorism advisor John Brennan defended the effort.
  • In recent years, the FBI has repeatedly violated surveillance laws, misstated facts in National Security Letters it submits, and tried to cover up its unlawful behavior after the fact.
  • The U.S. government instituted an official program of torture in secret. Its architects were never seriously investigated or charged, despite the obligation to do so under a duly ratified treaty -- and even worse, many people complicit in the torture staff the national-security state even today.
  • When indisputable evidence emerged that the Bush Administration conducted illegal warrantless surveillance on American citizens, and that various telecom companies violated the law by aiding government efforts, no one was prosecuted. By providing retroactive immunity to the lawbreakers instead, President Obama played a direct role in this injustice.

These are far from the only official abuses to occur in the post-9/11 era. Whole books have been written detailing the misleading, negligent behavior of the national-security decision-makers who paved the way for the Iraq invasion, presided over the Abu Ghraib prison, and looked away as private defense contractors stole from American taxpayers and misbehaved abroad. But surely the points above are sufficient reason to harbor a deep, abiding mistrust of the government.

That isn't to say that it can or should be abolished.

America needs a federal government. It needs national-security officials, and even classified programs -- I don't want or need to know the identities of those trying to infiltrate al-Qaeda cells. But the case for being distrustful is air-tight. The case for demanding transparency, and assuming that secret surveillance programs will be abused, is supported by all the relevant history. The case for more robust oversight, by Congress, the press, and the public, is firmly grounded in experience. The notion that American security depends on a pervasive surveillance state maintained in secret -- something we've never had -- is totally without precedent, and the evidence presented for it so far is "trust us." And that we shouldn't trust is obvious.

Let's go back a bit farther, to the 1970s.

"The rampant abuses uncovered by the Church Committee, recall, had in many instances gone undisclosed to the public for decades," indispensable policy expert Julian Sanchez writes at the Cato Institute. "This is for the unsurprising reason that when government officials illegally misuse information obtained in secret surveillance programs, they tend not to send out press releases about it, but rather make covert and indirect use of the information -- as via targeted leaks -- and conceal their actions as far as possible, which the shroud of secrecy facilitates."

Among the abuses uncovered long after the fact:
Again, the abuses uncovered by the Church Committee -- long after most of them took place and went undetected for lack of oversight -- are far more broad than the ones I've summarized and linked.

But they suffice to make the point. There is no reason to think that the Americans who staff the government today, and the politicians who preside over them, are somehow less prone to abusing their authority when afforded the ability to act in secret, nor that they'll remain so for the foreseeable future, through unknown presidents of both parties -- an argument that no one seems willing to make and defend. So it is irrational, even foolhardy, to permit the sort of official secrecy that the Bush and Obama Administrations have shortsightedly and arrogantly championed.

Drum isn't unsympathetic to much of what I've written, and if it were up to him, civil liberties would be far more secure than they are today. But given that he shares my horror at the abuses in the Church Committee report, the abuses of the Bush years, and the abuses of the Obama years -- and could surely write a long magazine piece about the abuses of Reagan, Bush and Clinton too -- I can't understand why he treats the posture of distrusting government as suspect.

It is rational.

The reflexive trust of some legislators and establishment journalists is far more irrational, ideological, and historically illiterate. The real "chin scratcher" is why so many have trusted Bush and Obama, even as they demanded levels of secrecy and executive branch autonomy that would corrupt anyone, even knowing that mixing secrecy and the surveillance state produced alarming government abuse before. Drum should refrain from treating mistrust in government as if it is mostly the irrational consequence of believing lies told by right-wing entertainers.

The lies the government constantly tells are the more relevant factor.

http://m.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/06/why-are-people-so-distrustful-of-big-government/276963/

Islam, Fracking and more



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With DOMA Decision, Supreme Court Correctly Recognizes Legal Equality of Gay Couples by Ari Armstrong


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Fwd: [LeftLibertarian2] Noted in news



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Sarah Palin says she'll quit the GOP and form a new party called the Freedom Party.  Her main issue with the GOP appears to be the party's softness on immigration - so the Freedom Party will be devoted to stricter enforcement of the most arbitrary and absurd of laws.

Woody Harrelson, in a Details interview, was asked if he was a Democrat.  He said no, criticized Obama, and declared himself an anarchist.

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Fwd: Senate Immigration Bill Rife With Lies, Fraud And Trickery by Alan Bates, MD



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From: Gulf1 Outgoing Mail
Date: Sunday, June 30, 2013
Subject: Senate Immigration Bill Rife With Lies, Fraud And Trickery by Alan Bates, MD
To: majors.bruce@gmail.com


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Senate Immigration Bill Rife With Lies, Fraud And Trickery 
From Alan Bates, MD

The Democrat Party, immersed in their Administration's crimes and scandals and therefore at risk of losing the Senate in the midterm elections, is in a panic to retain their base through a 1200 page pork-laden immigration bill which is rife with lies, fraud and deceit.  If passed into law,  it would continue the path of destruction of our nation's cultural identity and economy while ensuring little to enforce CURRENT border security laws.  Some gullible Republicans such as John McCain and Lindsey Graham have bought the Democrat lies 'hook, line and sinker'.  These GOP cheerleaders of a massively flawed immigration bill have been led by Democrats to believe that the GOP will melt away if they don't pass this horrible 'compromise' bill.  So what is wrong with the current Senate bill and what are the real solutions?

One must first  face the fact  that current and past  Administrations (both parties) have refused to complete and enforce current federal border security laws and are therefore in violation of the rule of law.  In 1986,  Congress passed border security measures which were never enacted, resulting in the current debacle of an additional 12 million or more illegal immigrants, many of whom are not accounted for, most subsisting off our poorly regulated taxpayer- funded welfare system which contributes to fiscal and economic calamity particularly in border states.   So why should we believe the Senate's promises now?   The Democrats are all about winning elections by redistributing wealth from productive citizens and giving to those who are not in order to win votes---expanding the welfare state.  But what about the 'border surge' amendment proposed by Republicans which should make the bill more palatable to the GOP-dominated House?  The bill and its amendment are a concoction of promises without teeth which accomplish the Democrats'  goals while providing numerous loopholes in  border security enforcement provisions.

Wayne Allyn Root,  the well-known Libertarian politician, entrepreneur, TV/radio personality, author and political commentator (who attended Columbia University with Obama) has a new video clip which outlines the correct solution to illegal immigration and border security which safeguards our nation's citizens, our values and prevents further destruction to our economy at the hands of power hungry misguided socialists.  He correctly points out the solution is not 1200 pages of pork-containing legislation which not one senator has completely read,  much less analyzed---just like the debacle of  Obamacare.  Root points out that the current bill is no 'compromise' despite the 'border surge' amendment because that amendment if full of loopholes not covered by the secular regresses of the lame street press nor apparently recognized by the Kool-Aide drinking Republicans who voted for it.  Said loopholes defeat the publicized border security provisions and therefore allow yet more illegals to cross the border and plunder taxpayers,  hastening our economic and cultural decline. 

Root suggests a separate stand-alone border security bill now.  Any bill to address the status of current illegals would be addressed only after  the border is verified as secure by Congress and an independent panel of citizens---not DHS and the Administration who have self-serving goals.  Only after border security is verified should there be a separate bill which incorporates the following points (no 'compromise' scams):  illegals must be identified and only those with work go to the end of the line behind those waiting for legal citizenship; end all welfare (and no Obamacare) for illegals and allow them to collect social security only after they pay taxes for years just like the rest of us;  end birthright citizenship;  learn English as a requirement for future citizenship eligibility. 

Wayne Root believes correctly that Democrats will not agree to real compromise.  That he says would be a huge problem for them in future elections IF  smart Republicans will call the Democrats' bluff and the fact that the current Senate bill is full of lies, fraud and trickery.  For the good of America, the Senate bill is dead in the House despite Senator Schumer's fantasy that it will eventually pass in that body.

The Perfect GOP Compromise On Immigration: ROOT For America          
http://patriotaction.net/video/video/show?id=2600775%3AVideo%3A6289871&xgs=1&xg_source=msg_share_video

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Turn Your Back This Fourth of July

"It is painfully obvious -- so why pretend otherwise?"

Turn Your Back This Fourth of July
by eric • June 27, 2013

In a few days, we will all have an opportunity to peacefully inflict a major psychological blow on the rapidly coalescing police state by the simple but powerful act of refusing to play along with the absurd pantomime on the 4th of July that we live in an even nominally free country -- one with the rule of law, an operative Constitution and respect for individual rights. One that isn't a thugocracy.

We can turn our backs on the flag. Decline to participate when urged to cheer and sing.

4th lead  

No fireworks. No barbeques.

We can sit down -- and bow our heads.

We can mention the unmentionable: That there is no longer any meaningful limit to the power of the government over our lives. No line beyond which it may not tread. That it lies, spies and tyrannizes.

We can admit to ourselves the shoddy -- and frightening -- reality bubbling up all around us.

By so doing, we can shatter the illusion that this government operates with anything remotely approximating our consent. This is absolutely essential. The 4th of July pantomime requires that we deny the obvious -- that we instead pretend we're free people living in a free country; one in which the government is accountable to the people, one in which the government is limited by law. One in which people can't simply be dragooned into prisons without due process, held incommunicado, tortured. A country with a president who doesn't have kill lists -- or use the instruments of state power to punish and intimidate his political opponents. One in which citizens must be suspected of a crime before their personal correspondence is filched through and recorded for later use against them. One in which a traveler is free from arbitrary and random searches of his person and effects.

back turned  

One in which the attorney general of the United States isn't able to get away with providing guns to gangs or brazenly lie about his use of the power of his office to go after political "enemies" rather than pursue justice.

All these things are everyday realities. And the reality is that the America we once celebrated on the Fourth of July is gone, replaced by something dark and ominous.

It is painfully obvious -- so why pretend otherwise?

More to the point, why should we celebrate this ugly transformation?

Mourning is what's called for.

If we decline to play along -- and we still have this option, for the moment -- we can shatter the idea that all of the foregoing loathsomeness is done with our approval. We can redefine the relationship between ourselves and the government in an honest way. No more pretending we're free. No more pretending we're protected by the rule of law -- and not ruled over by a thug caste -- a mafia -- that does literally whatever it wants, to anyone, at any time -- without any real consequences whatsoever. None of this requires elaboration. Everyone knows it to be true. The Constitution is no longer even payed lip service to. It is a sick joke.

We are in the position of a battered spouse who is expected to rouge her bruises and tell her friends that -- whoops! -- she fell down the stairs. But hubby is a swell guy.

beaten wife

I say, to hell with that.

I say, let's not give them the cover they still apparently crave. I say, let's out them -- by openly displaying our bruises and no longer denying how we got them. Let the world see the true nature of the relationship between us and those who rule us.

China had its Tiananmen Moment -- when one brave man stood up to a column of tanks and changed history by the simple act of refusing to play along. By peacefully forcing the thugocracy's hand. It faced a hard choice: Either it could either run that man down in full view of live TV, crush him under the treads of a T-72 and thereby give real-life and incontrovertible evidence of the true nature of the relationship of the Chinese government vis-a-vis the average Chinese. Or it could back down -- and thereby be compelled to alter the relationship in a way at least somewhat more favorable to the average Chinese.

4th final

We have a similar opportunity coming up. A chance to confront the police state by refusing to pretend it's not a police state. By coming to grips with what it is.

And what it is is nothing to celebrate.

I urge you to join me this July 4th in turning your back on the flag – on all grotesque homilies to a country that no longer exists, because of the government which does exist -- and which desperately wants us to keep on playing patty cake and pretending that it doesn't.

Throw it in the Woods?  

http://ericpetersautos.com/2013/06/27/turn-your-back-this-fourth-of-july/

Litigation Exposes CAIR’s Massive Web of Fraud and Deceit





creeping posted: "via AFLC - American Freedom Law Center. This past Wednesday, the American Freedom Law Center (AFLC) filed another important document in a four-year court battle that has brought to light the Council on American-Islamic Relations' (CAIR or CAIR National) "
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Litigation Exposes CAIR's Massive Web of Fraud and Deceit

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via AFLC - American Freedom Law Center. This past Wednesday, the American Freedom Law Center (AFLC) filed another important document in a four-year court battle that has brought to light the Council on American-Islamic Relations' (CAIR or CAIR National) elaborate ties to terrorism; its abuse of tax codes and corporate law; and most shockingly, its […]

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What, Obama worry?






http://nyp.st/12vwrID

 

What, Obama worry?

By MICHAEL GOODWIN

 

Last Updated: 3:43 AM, June 30, 2013

 

Posted: 1:09 AM, June 30, 2013

 

Can the United States survive the remaining 3 1/2 years of the Obama presidency? That was the question I asked a well-known veteran of Washington politics and national-security issues. Though a Democrat, he is trusted and respected by both parties for his many years of advice and troubleshooting service to the nation.

 

I asked the question because our long conversation reflected shared worries about the rise of Islamic fundamentalism and America's retreat. We discussed the disasters of Syria, Benghazi and Obama's strange support for the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsi in Egypt. We agreed the odds were growing that Iran would get a nuclear weapon and feared what it would mean for Israel and our Arab allies.

 

We expressed shock at the lasting damage done to our intelligence agencies by Edward Snowden, the sloppy background check that enabled him to get security clearance in the first place and the Keystone Kops effort to capture him. We winced that our nation's reputation was an international punch line as Russia and China mocked our president.

 

Given that context, my question of whether America can survive Obama was not just a figure of speech or an exaggerated musing. I meant it literally.

 

My friend understood my meaning.

 

"I don't know," he said. When I pressed him, he reviewed the scope of the global disorder we had just discussed, and repeated his answer. "I don't know," he said a second time.

 

The exchange happened last week, and my heart skips a beat when I recall it. His answer wasn't what I expected or hoped for.

 

Despite my pessimism, I wanted to be talked out of it. I wanted this wise man, with his experience and calm temperament, to tell me not to worry, that we had been through worse before and America would be fine.

 

Maybe we will be fine. But the sense that the walls are closing in on us and that we are showing weakness to an emboldened, hostile world fills me with dread. I have a growing fear we are on the verge of a catastrophe.

 

It didn't help that the Army announced it will trim our forces by 80,000 troops over five years and said more reductions might also be necessary to meet budget reductions.

 

Nor does it help that our president seems somewhere between indifferent and oblivious to growing global threats. His $100 million, weeklong family trip to Africa, no doubt to be followed by an August vacation, seems off-key.

 

And his answers at a press conference in Senegal to questions about Snowden were beyond bizarre. As my colleague Geoff Earle wrote from Washington, the president adopted a "What, me worry?" tone.

 

"I'm not going to be scrambling jets to get a 29-year-old hacker," Obama said. His answer was classic Obama — setting up a straw man by falsely suggesting somebody had proposed he send jets, then minimizing Snowden's crime by calling him a "hacker," as though he had played a computer prank.

 

In fact, Snowden has been charged in a federal indictment with espionage, among other counts.

 

The president also disparaged suggestions he should be more involved, saying he had not spoken to the leaders of either China or Russia. "I shouldn't have to," he said, because the case "is not exceptional from a legal perspective."

 

You would think White House reporters traveling with the president would push him on his listless approach to the crisis, but you would be wrong. Obama spent 14 minutes with the press corps as Air Force One flew later to South Africa, but got no questions about Snowden. Instead, according to The Weekly Standard, reporters asked only about the Africa trip.

 

So the mainstream media, like Obama, isn't worried about anything. Which means the rest of us must continue to sound the alarm while counting down the days until Jan. 20th, 2017.

 

Critics fail to 'Stop & think'

 

Let's agree that Mayor Bloomberg could have found a smarter way to defend stop-and-frisk. His comment on WOR radio that "we disproportionately stop whites too much and minorities too little" was clumsy and gave some Democratic candidates an opening for a cheap shot.

 

"It shows a lack of awareness and a lack of sensitivity," Bill Thompson charged.

 

"To truly fix stop-and-frisk, we need an independent inspector general and a racial-profiling ban," thundered Public Advocate Bill de Blasio.

 

No doubt their opportunistic anger made both feel better. Wonder how they will feel if their policies lead to more minorities being killed. More importantly, how will grieving families feel?

 

Bloomberg's sin was using shorthand instead of statistics. With blacks and Hispanics committing or named as suspects in 92 percent of violent crimes last year, an exact cause-and-effect would have members of those groups stopped at that rate.

 

But, in fact, members of those groups were stopped 87 percent of the time. Whites accounted for six percent of violent crime, but were stopped at a rate of 10 percent.

 

That's what Bloomberg was trying to say. But his glib choice of words shouldn't be allowed to obscure two larger facts.

 

First, the Police Department has saved thousands of lives, most of them black and Hispanic males, by taking guns off the street. The moves to handcuff cops, through lawsuits and two ruinous bills that just passed the City Council, will lead to more deaths.

 

Second, why don't the candidates address the high levels of crime in minority neighborhoods? Why is it so far out of proportion to other neighborhoods?

 

Perhaps one day the candidates will get the courage to face the inconvenient facts. Until then, they're simply refusing to see the elephant in the room.

 

'Hateful' spin tarnishes gays' victory

 

Count me among those cheering the Supreme Court decisions on gay marriage. At least I was cheering until I read the part of Justice Anthony Kennedy's opinion where he claims the law he struck down was motivated by hate.

 

The Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage as between man and woman, had passed Congress and been signed into law by Bill Clinton in 1996. Although the leaders of both parties unanimously supported it until Barack Obama "evolved" during last year's campaign, Kennedy said the law inflicts an "injury and indignity" on gay Americans and reflected a "bare congressional desire to harm a politically unpopular group."

 

By extension of that logic, those who still oppose same-sex marriage are bigots.

 

Kennedy's spiteful tone is unworthy of the Supreme Court, especially on such a divisive issue of conscience and religion. By stooping so low, he not only sets up the next round of litigation, but does it by demeaning millions of people who simply hold a different opinion. Shame on him for tarnishing the historic event.

 

Ink for the clink

 

Former football star Aaron Hernandez, charged with one murder and being investigated for two others, looks as if he's been preparing for prison for years. His huge tattoos will be a perfect fit in a maximum-security lockup.

 



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