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Heavy-Handed Politics

"€œGod willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world
without the United States and Zionism."€ -- Iran President Ahmadi-Nejad

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Italian raids aim to avert terror hits

Italian police searched 15 sites yesterday with rising concern that Muslim terror cells were poised to strike Italy -- and attack again in Britain.

Muslim group in Britain decries 'hate'

Leaders of a key Muslim organization in Britain, angered by the deadly terror attacks in London, yesterday told tens of thousands of followers that "enough is enough" and urged all Muslims to turn away from "harbingers of hate."

Should the French be Worried?

In an interview with Dr. Soner Cagaptay, an adjunct assistant professor at Georgetown University and a senior fellow and director of The Washington Institute's Turkish Research Program he commented on the Muslim situation in France.
Here is the picture: percentage-wise as well as in cumulative terms, France has the largest Muslim community in the EU. There are no official figures, since France does not collect numbers on religious affiliation, but according to official estimates, there are 6 million Muslims in France, that is 10 percent of the population. Unofficial estimates point at an even higher figure, suggesting as many as 8-9 million Muslims. What is more, given the low birth rate in the general French society, and the continuing immigration of Muslims from North Africa, this number is bound to increase.

The issue I would like to raise in this context is not that we should be concerned that there are so many Muslims in France, rather it is that the Muslims in France see themselves at the margins of the society and resent that fact. The Muslims in France are the worst integrated Muslim community in any EU country. Mass Muslim immigration to France is a post-WWII development. Many came from North Africa, especially Algeria, to look for jobs. However, France has done a terrible job in integrating them. The benign founding myth of the French state, that there are no differences between the citizens, has worked against the integration of the Muslims. On the one hand, from the very beginning, Muslims in France, already from a background of conservative--rural Islam, had few avenues towards assimilation into the metropolitan French society, and on the other, the society has acted as if these barriers do no exist.

The end result is that vast segments of the Muslim population in France have little to do with the rest of the society. There are for instance no Muslims in the French parliament, and when is the last time anyone met a Muslim diplomat representing France? The banlieus of Paris, Marseilles, and other major French cities are full of disgruntled and poor North African Muslims today, who feel discriminated in the school system, in the public sector and in access to government services. The bottom line is that elite institutions, means of upward mobility, as well as quality government services are in accessible to most Muslims in France. What is more, with the rise of radicalism in the 1990s, these neighborhoods are now under the effective control of fundamentalist Muslims. If I were French, I would be very worried.

Millions 'still at risk in Darfur'

THE lives of millions of people displaced by the conflict in Darfur are "hanging in the balance", aid workers warned yesterday, with the situation in the war-torn region of western Sudan little improved from a year ago.

UN attacks Sudan for breaking rape pledge
SUDANESE police and soldiers continue to rape helpless civilians in Darfur despite government promises to stop them and punish those responsible, according to a UN report.

Doubts grow over facts of Tube shooting

"Here in Britain pressure is mounting over the Met's controversial shoot-to-kill policy. A week after de Menezes was shot in Stockwell Street Tube station serious doubts have been raised over the circumstances in which he died.

Yesterday it emerged that de Menezes, who was shot eight times, may not have jumped over a ticket barrier to escape his police pursuers, as originally claimed. Relatives living in London also insist he was not wearing a bulky winter coat, which police said had raised their suspicions that he could be carrying a suicide bomb.

Documents leaked to newspapers also suggest police are now operating under orders not to challenge suicide bombers or identify themselves before firing a critical headshot. This raises questions over whether de Menezes was aware that he was being pursued by officers and whether he had an opportunity to surrender."

'Saddam attacked in court'

Members of Saddam Hussein's Jordan-based defence team claimed that the former Iraqi president was attacked during a court appearance last week, a claim immediately disputed by the chief investigating judge of the tribunal.

A man burst out from those gathered in the court room and tried to hit Saddam as the ousted leader was leaving the courtroom at the end of a 45-minute hearing on Thursday, Saddam's legal team said in a statement.

"There was an exchange of blows between the man and the president," the statement said, also claiming that the judge overseeing the hearing did nothing to stop the assault.

© Copyright Press Association Ltd 2005, All Rights Reserved.
From The Scotsman

Armed police smash terrorist bomb cell

Police yesterday smashed the suspected terror cell behind last week's attempted suicide attacks on London in a series of dramatic armed raids.

From The Scotsman

'Confession' lifts lid on London bomb plot

The London bomb plot suspect arrested in Rome has allegedly confessed to Italian interrogators, lifting the lid on the plan to bring a wave of terror to Britain.

From The Scotsman

What Do The Terrorists Want?

Ignoring the truth about jihad...

What do Islamist terrorists want? The answer should be obvious, but it is not.

Most anti-Western terrorist attacks these days are perpetrated without demands being enunciated. Bombs go off, planes get hijacked and crashed into buildings, hotels collapse. The dead are counted. Detectives trace back the perpetrators' identities. Shadowy websites make post-hoc unauthenticated claims.

But the reasons for the violence go unexplained. Analysts are left speculating about motives. These can relate to terrorists' personal grievances based in poverty, prejudice, or cultural alienation.

What the terrorists want is abundantly clear. In nearly all cases, the jihadi terrorists have a patently self-evident ambition: to establish a world dominated by Muslims, Islam, and Islamic law, the Shari'a. Or, again to cite the Daily Telegraph, their "real project is the extension of the Islamic territory across the globe, and the establishment of a worldwide ‘caliphate' founded on Shari'a law."

Although terrorists state their jihadi motives loudly and clearly, Westerners and Muslims alike too often fail to hear them. Islamic organizations, Canadian author Irshad Manji observes, pretend that "Islam is an innocent bystander in today's terrorism."

Read all of Daniel Pipes article at FrontPageMagazine

Misleading Reporting

Times' editorial boilerplate burns Israel again

PapolicemanA recent independent assessment of the Palestinian security forces found them in a state of utter disarray and nearly impotent as a law enforcement unit. What went wrong? The NY Times' Steven Erlanger reported:

The essential problem for the Palestinian Authority, the report says, is that its security forces were established on "an ad hoc basis without statutory support and in isolation of wider reforms," a lasting legacy of Mr. Arafat's policy of duplication and promoting rivalry within his organization.

Erlanger quotes the head of the Jerusalem office of the organization that drafted the report stating that 'continuing structural reform is the only way to build a credible Palestinian security that can provide internal order and a reliable relationship with Israel that could lead to a permanent peace.'

But that conclusion from the report's own authors, conveyed by a Times reporter, wasn't good enough for the Times' editorial board. Today's Times editorial - 'Nourishing the Palestinian Police' - responds to the report by blaming Israel alone for the unfortunate state of the Palestinian police force:

The tattered nature of Palestinian Authority security forces - including police officers and soldiers - has been evident since Ariel Sharon essentially destroyed those forces three years ago, during the Palestinians' ill-advised intifada. Yet senior Israeli military officials, as well as Israeli politicians like Mr. Sharon, now insist that Mr. Abbas has sufficient manpower and arms to dismantle the militant groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad if he would just decide to do so. Adding insult to irony, Israel has refused requests by Lt. Gen. William Ward, the American-appointed coordinator of the effort to overhaul the Palestinian security apparatus, to allow the Palestinians to import new armored vehicles and fresh supplies of arms to do that very job.

This editorial falls squarely within the astutely noted 'template' for NY Times Mideast editorials presented by Mediacrity:

1. Whatever The Problem, Blame Israel. This is the cornerstone of the template. These editorials always maintain a pretense of even-handedness ("the failure of Israeli and Palestinian leaders"), but the message of the editorials is almost invariably that Israel gets the lion's share of the blame for whatever happens to be going awry at any particular point in time.

The Times editorial board's commitment to blame Israel has now overridden the very news item it comments on. Times editors are showing their true colors here -- it's not a question of subjective perspective, it's an institutionalized bias that grants legitimacy only to information that conforms to their fixed position.

In this case, the independent report's overview of PA security chaos is fine and admissible, but that very report's conclusion of internal Palestinian culpability is ignored, omitted, and rejected.

From Backspin



I Love Animals – They’re Delicious!

If We're Not Supposed to Eat Animals, Why Are They Made Out of Meat?

Beer – It’s Not Just A Breakfast Drink

Honk If You've Never Seen An Uzi Fired From A Car Window

Forget World Peace. Visualize Using Your Turn Signal

America Does Not Owe You A Living

Gun Control Is Using Both Hands

September 11, 2001 – Never Forgive, Never Forget

Judge John Roberts

On soon-to-be Justice John Roberts, Dr. Jack Wheeler says, "[The] stakes go far beyond Roe v. Wade. Smart liberals know the entire gigantic edifice of Federal bureaucratic control over our lives, which they have been painstakingly building since the 1930s, has as its foundation one thin reed of six Constitutional words tortured beyond recognition. Invest those words with normal recognizable meaning, and thousands of Federal laws and regulations are defunct."

"This is the conservatives’ and the libertarians’ dream, and the liberals’ nightmare."

It all revolves around the Interstate Commerce Clause. Specifically "those six words."

Article I, Section 8, Clause 3 of the Constitution is known as the Commerce Clause, empowering Congress to “regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes.” That portion of it, the authority to “regulate Commerce among the several States,” is called the Interstate Commerce Clause. These six words have been the primary means used by liberals to grow Federal Governmental power – starting with Wickard v. Filburn

"The Washington Post, in a July 25 editorial, criticized Roberts’ “too narrow view of Congress’ power to regulate interstate commerce.” The liberals’ tyrannical secret is that any limit on this power is too narrow for them, claims Wheeler.

The WaPo went on to say that the Interstate Commerce Clause was, “The constitutional backbone of the modern regulatory state.”

Wheeler feels, "the Commerce Clause as interpreted since Wickard v. Filburn is the critical vulnerability of the liberal Washington bureaucracy and the liberal interest groups that support it. Without the mangled interpretation of those six words, "thousands of Federal laws and regulations are defunct."

"If there is one thing anyone who has clerked for Justice Rehnquist can tell you, he is passionate about restricting the overreach of the Commerce Clause. This passion is drilled into their heads. John Roberts was one of those clerks."

"Roberts will be a Fabian Constitutionalist. He will apply the actual words and literal meaning of the Constitution incrementally. His will be a slow progression, a steady dismantlement of liberal perversions of our Constitution. He is a revolutionary who will take his time to complete the task."

"His will be a legacy of Constitutional government and increased prosperity (by getting the government and its regulations out of the way) for our children and grandchildren. One of the great advantages conservatives have over liberals is all we need is a straightforward interpretation of the actual meaning of the Constitution. Liberals need penumbras and emanations and invented distortions."

"All we need is someone who respects the Constitution enough to adjudicate on the basis of what it actually says."

And we may just have that in John Roberts.

Is Progress Being Made?

In my post Hear! Hear! Stand Up Oh Silent Ones I stated, "But let's be honest. Even if there was a lot more outrage expressed by Muslims and Muslim leaders, this would not be enough. Anyone can openly denounce such acts, but still secretly support these very same acts. As the saying goes, "talk is cheap".

My point was that we needed widespread condemnation on acts of terror by the Muslim community on a global scale including Muslim leaders, AND action; not just lip service.

Maybe there's some hope in Egypt that this idea is beginning to sink in. I say this because Egyptians are having a surprisingly blunt discussion about whether mainstream mosques and schools, and yes, even the the government itself, should be faulted for promoting Islamic extremism after the terror attacks on a resort along the Red Sea, which has left them dazed.
"Islamic preaching institutions are in a very acute need for a shake-up," Mr. Bayoumi said in an interview. "Issuing statements and holding conferences to condemn terrorism is not what is needed. They are more like a cover-up of unresolved problems." Islamic leaders "need to do a lot of work to enlighten clerics and preachers and educate them about the true religious ideas ... and teach them about the realities of the age we're living in," he said.
Abdel Moeti Bayoumi is a theology professor at Al-Azhar University and a member of Al-Azhar's Center of Islamic Research. The article, "Terror attacks spur soul-searching by Egyptians" can be read at The Washington Times.

Arctic census reveals surprises
The Arctic may not be quite so troubled as some advocacy groups would have us believe.

According to the unprecedented "Census of Marine Life" released by a four-country team of scientists yesterday, the isolated, frigid waters on the top of the planet are teeming with creatures of many persuasions. "The Ice Oceans abound with life," notes the inventory compiled by researchers who spent a month above the Arctic Circle, returning with thousands of specimens including octopus, squid, cod, snails, jellyfish, clams and shrimp.

The "historic" event, the report states, "revealed a surprising density and diversity of Arctic Ocean creatures, some believed new to science." The 24 researchers from the United States, Canada, Russia and China were understandably enthusiastic.

"The density of animals is much higher than expected," said marine ecologist Bodil Bluhm of the University of Alaska, Fairbanks (UAF). "It now appears possible to confirm that the rich biodiversity surprising deep-sea explorers worldwide exists as well in deep Arctic waters."

How deep? The research team, journeying aboard the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Healy, investigated depths of up to 11,000 feet using a remotely operated underwater probe, a camera platform and -- yes -- nets and traps.

Sheltered below ice up to 60 feet thick, the extreme but remarkably calm depths was virgin territory -- no human had ever set eyes on them. The explorers included under-ice scuba divers manning video cameras, but still tethered to the surface for safety.

Marine scientist Russ Hopcroft credits modern technology for the breakthrough findings. "The few explorers in this area before us had no adequate tools to collect or see these creatures," he says.


Continued good news on the economy front as Solid growth posted for quarter.
Growth clocked in at a solid 3.4 percent in the spring quarter, a sign that record-high energy prices did little to impair the economy, the Commerce Department reported yesterday."

Friday, July 29, 2005

"British citizens, who happen to be Muslim, murdered over 50 people, including themselves. Or, was it Islamists, who happen to be British, killed innocent people? It makes a difference. Brits today, Americans tomorrow, must know who their domestic enemies are and what kind of war they are fighting to win. Assuming Brits or Americans have the will to win. This World War is between a totalitarian ideology, born of a relatively barbaric culture, against all humankind." ---James Atticus Bowden, military futurist.

"Thousands of innocent civilians such as [Theo] van Gogh have been murdered by Islamic extremists -- in Darfur, Gaza, India, Israel, Lebanon, London, Madrid, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey and the United States. The carnage gives credence to the adage that while the vast majority of Muslims are not terrorists, the vast majority of global terrorists most certainly are Muslims. The killers always allege particular gripes -- Australian troops in Iraq, Christian proselytizing, Hindu intolerance, occupation of the West Bank, theft of Arab petroleum, the Jews, attacks on the Taliban, the 15th-century reconquest of Spain, and, of course, the Crusades. But in most cases -- from Mohamed Atta, who crashed into the World Trade Center, to Ahmed Sheik, the former London School of Economics student who planned the beheading of Daniel Pearl, to Magdy Mahmoud Mustafa el-Nashar, the suspected American-educated bomb-maker in London -- the common bond is not poverty, a lack of education or legitimate grievance. Instead it is blind hatred instilled by militant Islam."
---Victor Davis Hanson

"September 11 for me was a wake up call. Do you know what I think the problem is? That a lot of the world woke up for a short time and then turned over and went back to sleep again."
---British Prime Minister Tony Blair

"[I]t is a common observation here that our cause is the cause of all mankind, and that we are fighting for their liberty in defending our own."
---Benjamin Franklin

I'm Longing for This...............

Hastert eyes immigration
By Stephen Dinan
House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert said yesterday his chamber will work to produce an immigration bill this year, even as the White House signaled a new emphasis on immigration law enforcement as part of selling President Bush's proposal.

The Illinois Republican placed immigration near the top of the list of priorities when Congress returns from its August recess, just below the must-pass spending bills and just before Social Security. He said any immigration bill must mix enforcement, a program for new foreign workers and a solution to the illegal aliens now here."
I suppose it would be too much to expect bipartisan support and a real interest from both sides to work together to solve this important and complicated subject.

No End To Terrorism

"Trying to eliminate various geo-political grievances might help by reducing the number of potential single-issue terror recruits - but it won't end the terror. The list of grievances is seemingly inexhaustible, which means there will always be reasons for somebody to get worked up about something happening somewhere around the world (the IRA's war largely consisted of Irishmen blowing up other Irishmen and the Brits on the British Isles; Al Qaeda's war consists of Moroccans blowing themselves up in Iraq). Secondly, there will always be enough people attracted to Al Qaeda's totalitarian dream - people who want the flag of the Prophet flying over every capital, the end of Dar Al Harb, and the conversion or death of all the infidels." - Chrenkoff (Emphasis mine - HH)

As I have mentioned before, from time to time, Chrenkoff is one of my favorite reads. He brings up a point that is not often addressed, or at least not as much as needed and I suspect it is do to with being PC; and that is the totalitarian dream of world domination by the fundamentalist believers of Islam. Dreams of world domination by totalitarians has always existed, and I fear, as a practical matter, always will. It has been fought before as Nazism, Communism, and Fascism, and currently being fought as many are calling it - Islofacism or Islamofacism.

It is important we identify our enemy and understand their goals. The problem isn't just 50 to 100 "trouble makers" in every country. It is much deeper than that.

A little over a year ago, I came across an article on the internet from a UK news site about Middle Eastern men (British citizens) sitting outside at an outdoor cafe. The four men were talking out loud and speaking openly with the reporter about the desire to fight the Jihad war against Britain, bombing, etc., and bringing Britain down. These young middle class men had been born in England. The reporter was amazed (as was I) at their openess and brazenness.

Pondering how widespread this problem was, I emailed Dennis Prager the link to the article and posed that question to him. He responded with a thank you to the article and was printing it off as he was emailing his response to me. A couple days later, on his nationally syndicated radio talk show, he was reading excerpts from the article and discussing the depth of the problem.

That was maybe about 13 to 14 months ago; and we all know now of the recent events in London.

I read two different articles recently with statistics in them and if I recall them correctly, one said that the British government acknowledges about 1.5 million Mulims are presently living there (although some people, the article noted, thought that the figure could be twice that) and, the other article said that only 72% of the people living there, who were following the Islamic faith, would notify the authorities if they had information about bombing threats. A quick exercise in math would tell me that there are 405,ooo people of the Islamic faith living there that do not have Britains best interest at heart.

The other point I want to bring to the table is that we should all know as Chrenkoff points out, "The list of grievances is seemingly inexhaustible, which means there will always be reasons for somebody to get worked up about something happening somewhere around the world....." means that the Left will have an infinite amount of examples (as disingenuous as they may be) to point towards and to say "see, the war on terror isn't working!"

Grievance Mongers

Skilled columnsist, Mark Steyn writes,
As fascism and communism were in their day, Islamism is now the ideology of choice for the world's grievance-mongers. That means we have to destroy the ideology, or at least its potency -­ not Islam per se, but at the very minimum the malign strain of Wahabism, which thanks to Saudi oil money has been transformed from a fetish of isolated desert derelicts into the most influential radicalising force in contemporary Islam, from Indonesia to Leeds. Europeans who aren't prepared to roll back Wahabism had better be prepared to live with it, or under it."
Full article here, but it does require registration.


U.S. completes 6-nation deal on emissions
by Nicholas Kralev, The Washington Times
The United States and five Asia-Pacific countries have concluded an agreement to deploy new technologies aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions as an alternative to the Kyoto Protocol on climate change, U.S. and Australian officials said yesterday.

The legally nonbinding deal, to be signed by China, India, Japan, Australia and South Korea as well as the United States, goes beyond the 1997 Kyoto accord by limiting emissions from Asia's two rapidly developing giants -- China and India -- as well as by developed countries.

"Our focus has been and remains on promoting cost-effective, technology-based approaches to addressing climate change," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said.

"We are pursuing these voluntary approaches both at home and abroad, through our bilateral climate-change partnerships and our multilateral science and technology partnerships," he said.

Australia will host the first meeting of the six nations in November, diplomatic sources said today at a regional Asian forum in Laos.

"We know that this is the answer," said Australian Environment Minister Ian Campbell. "We know that the Kyoto Protocol is a failure in terms of saving the climate. We have to do better."

He said the agreement, which was initiated by the United States, was a result of yearlong negotiations. President Bush discussed it with the prime ministers of Australia and India -- John Howard and Manmohan Singh -- during their visits to Washington last week, officials said.

"The main aim of effective action is to involve rapidly developing countries who have legitimate needs to increase their energy use, but we also need to find the answer to the global imperative of reducing emissions," Mr. Campbell said.

"That's going to need the development of new technologies and the deployment of them within developing countries," he told reporters in Canberra.

The new "partnership," as U.S. and Asian officials called it, will cover the fields of energy efficiency, clean coal, integrated gasification combined cycle, liquefied natural gas, carbon capture and storage, combined heat and power, methane capture and use, civilian nuclear power, bioenergy and other renewables.

The new agreement comes less than three weeks after comments by Mr. Bush at the Group of Eight summit in Scotland about an alternative to the Kyoto Protocol.

Calling the Asia-Pacific version a "new results-oriented partnership," Mr. Bush said yesterday that it will allow nations to "develop and accelerate deployment of cleaner, more efficient energy technologies to meet national pollution reduction, energy security and climate change concerns in ways that reduce poverty and promote economic development."

"The six Asia-Pacific partners will build on our strong history of common approaches and demonstrated cooperation on clean energy technologies," he said.

The United States and Australia are not among the 140 nations that have ratified the Kyoto Protocol, which imposes legally binding requirements on 35 industrialized countries to cut greenhouse gas emissions an average of 5 percent below 1990 levels.
Those targets, they say, would have a negative impact on the economy. But they insist that they are still committed to protecting the environment.

"Just because we have expressed our concerns about the Kyoto agreement does not mean that this president hasn't been at the forefront in pushing for technologies that would help -- not only U.S. companies but companies around the world -- deal with environmental issues, so that they are able to build more prosperous economies in a way that also has a positive effect for the environment," Mr. McCormack said.

Mr. Campbell said that Australia "only emits 1.4 percent of the world's greenhouse gases."

The United States, however, is the world's largest culprit, followed by China.

Deputy Secretary of State Robert B. Zoellick planned to announce the new pact, called the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate, at the annual meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Vientiane, the capital of Laos today, but Australian officials leaked the news to the Australian newspaper.

The new arrangement was speedily condemned by environmental groups.

"Skulking around making secretive, selective deals will not accomplish this; signing up to the Kyoto Protocol will," said Greenpeace energy campaigner Catherine Fitzpatrick.

"A deal on climate change that doesn't limit pollution is the same as a peace plan that allows guns to be fired," said Jennifer Morgan, head of the climate-change program of the World Wildlife Fund, a conservation and environment advocacy group."
This article is based in part on wire service reports
HeavyHanded is extremely happy that this President sees through the folly of the Kyoto Protocol and what is really behind the Kyoto agenda. My fear is long term. What will the next two or three presidential election cycles bring us?

Heh, heh. Chrenkhoff blogs, "And the new pact has already achieved some global cooling:
A new American-led initiative to combat global warming met with a cool reaction yesterday as Europe and environmentalists warned that it risked undermining the Kyoto Protocol."

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Capitol Hill Blowout

Highways, bike paths, ethanol, "biomass"--Congress throws a spending party.

President Bush had to twist a lot of arms to squeak his Central American Free Trade Agreement through Congress this week, but Republicans are about to make sure he pays for a whole lot more than their chiropractor bills. Having sacrificed to support free trade, the Members prepared for the August recess by throwing themselves a giant spending party.


It's too much to hope that Mr. Bush will target one of these fiascoes with his first veto; any chance of a highway veto vanished when Mr. Hastert scheduled the bill immediately after Cafta. At least the Members are leaving town for August; too bad they plan to come back.

Full editorial From Opinion Journal (WSJ) can be read here.

Eminent Domain

"In Connecticut's Kelo v. City of New London case, the Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, supported the city's use of eminent domain to force a private property owner to sell to a private developer. ... Governments historically use eminent domain to acquire private property for 'public use,' defined as a road, bridge or a school. Here, the city bluntly acknowledges its goal -- a higher tax base. ... How often does government take private land for private purposes? Most Americans, no doubt, assume that this rarely happens. But according to the Institute for Justice, it occurs far more often than we think. From 1998 to 2002, government, at all levels, used eminent domain to acquire, or attempt to acquire, private property for private purposes on over 10,000 occasions." --Larry Elder

Thursday, July 28, 2005

The Real World - Ruin By Design

A good piece written by Claudia Rosett in Wall Street Journals' Opinion Journal.

The U.N. misses it, but Mugabe's regime is Zimbabwe's problem.

"To whatever extent the recent United Nations report on Zimbabwe calls attention to the brutalities of the country's tyrant, President Robert Mugabe, the U.N. has performed a service. But as far as the report translates into nothing more than a fresh bout of aid funneled via Mugabe's regime, this U.N. initiative will only compound the suffering in Zimbabwe--where the government's latest atrocity has been to "clean up" the cities by evicting hundreds of thousands of poor people, destroying their dwellings and leaving them jobless, homeless and hungry.

In describing this scene, the U.N. report provides a wealth of horrifying detail, but takes a detour around the basic cause, which is not, as the report concludes, such stuff as "improper advice" acted upon by "over-zealous officials." The real cause is the long and ruinous rule of Mugabe and his cronies."

Instead, the report faults wealthy nations for not providing more aid already, and notes that "With respect to the funding issue, some in the Zimbabwe political elite and intelligentsia, as well as others of similar persuasion around the continent, believe the international community is concerned more with 'regime change' and that there is no real and genuine concern for the welfare of ordinary people." Full story.

Absurd Quotes

"In the end, it may take a president who looks more like Sandra Day O'Connor to pick a court that looks more like America, than tokenism. Just imagine what could happen if a woman president chose justices who looked like her."
--Susan Estrich

"George Bush is not as clever as he thinks he is."
--- Rocket Scientist Rep. Maxine Waters on John Roberts' nomination

"You wouldn't run for the United States Senate or for governor or for anything else without answering people's questions about what you believe. And I think the Supreme Court is no different."
--- Constitutional Law Expert Senator Evan Bayh on failing to understand the differences of how one is seated in the legislative versus the judicial branch.

"The President and his Right-wing Supreme Court think it is 'okay' to have the government take your house if they feel like putting a hotel where your house is."
--- Historian Expert History Revisionist & DNC Chairman Howard Dean, getting the facts as wrong as he usually does referring to the recent Kelo v. City of New London ruling where the most liberal 5 Justices favored an expanded definition and use of eminent domain. By the way Mr. Dean, for clarification purposes, this administration has yet to add a Justice to the current Supreme Court, and are the same 9 Justices that were in place when Clinton left office.

"Now, I know the DLC has taken some shots from some within our party and that it has returned fire too. Well, I think it's high time for a cease-fire, time for all Democrats to work together based on the fundamental values we all share."
--- Hillary RobThem Rodham Clinton

Heavy Handed says now if only they can figure out what those values are. Well, I'll just bet the Democratic Leadership Council can sort things out; and clarify what these values are and what it is that they stand for.... oops, well, maybe not .....

"At a time when Washington remains gripped in partisan warfare based on the Bush administration's narrow and ideologically driven agenda, it's a good time for Democrats to look beyond the Beltway and talk honestly with each other about what we should stand for. That will be the primary purpose of the DLC 2005 National Conversation."
--- Democratic Leadership Council press release describing the group's meeting this past weekend in Columbus, Ohio

This is not a good sign when you need to have a task force to figure out what you believe in.

"You have to respect [Senator Clinton]. This is a first-class professional. And if Bill is 'first spouse,' it'll be one of the great moments."
--- former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich

Somebody check his temperature, please.... I think he's hallucinating.

Islam Struggles For It's Soul

Ziauddin Sardar, a leading Muslim writer, says that it is not sufficient just to say that Islamist radicals are not Muslims. ‘We must acknowledge that the terrorists ... are products of Islamic history. Only by recognising this brutal fact will we realise that the fight against terrorism is also an internal Muslim struggle. Indeed, it is a struggle for the very soul of Islam.’

The Myth of Moderate Islam

From Spectator.co.uk
by Patrick Sookhdeo
(Registration required)
The funeral of British suicide bomber Shehzad Tanweer was held in absentia in his family’s ancestral village, near Lahore, Pakistan. Thousands of people attended, as they did again the following day when a qul ceremony was held for Tanweer. During qul, the Koran is recited to speed the deceased’s journey to paradise, though in Tanweer’s case this was hardly necessary. Being a shahid (martyr), he is deemed to have gone straight to paradise. The 22-year-old from Leeds, whose bomb at Aldgate station killed seven people, was hailed by the crowd as ‘a hero of Islam’.

Some in Britain cannot conceive that a suicide bomber could be a hero of Islam. Since 7/7 many have made statements to attempt to explain what seems to them a contradiction in terms. Since the violence cannot be denied, their only course is to argue that the connection with Islam is invalid. The deputy assistant commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Brian Paddick, said that ‘Islam and terrorists are two words that do not go together.’ His boss, the Commissioner Sir Ian Blair, asserted that there is nothing wrong with being a fundamentalist Muslim.

But surely we should give enough respect to those who voluntarily lay down their lives to accept what they themselves say about their motives. If they say they do it in the name of Islam, we must believe them. Is it not the height of illiberalism and arrogance to deny them the right to define themselves?

On 8 July the London-based Muslim Weekly unblushingly published a lengthy opinion article by Abid Ullah Jan entitled ‘Islam, Faith and Power’. The gist of the article is that Muslims should strive to gain political and military power over non-Muslims, that warfare is obligatory for all Muslims, and that the Islamic state, Islam and Sharia (Islamic law) should be established throughout the world. All is supported with quotations from the Koran. It concludes with a veiled threat to Britain. The bombings the previous day were a perfect illustration of what Jan was advocating, and the editor evidently felt no need to withdraw the article or to apologise for it. His newspaper is widely read and distributed across the UK.

By far the majority of Muslims today live their lives without recourse to violence, for the Koran is like a pick-and-mix selection. If you want peace, you can find peaceable verses. If you want war, you can find bellicose verses. You can find verses which permit only defensive jihad, or you can find verses to justify offensive jihad.

You can even find texts which specifically command terrorism, the classic one being Q8:59-60, which urges Muslims to prepare themselves to fight non-Muslims, ‘Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power, including steeds of war, to strike terror into (the hearts of) the enemies’ (A. Yusuf Ali’s translation). Pakistani Brigadier S.K. Malik’s book The Quranic Concept of War is widely used by the military of various Muslim countries. Malik explains Koranic teaching on strategy: ‘In war our main objective is the opponent’s heart or soul, our main weapon of offence against this objective is the strength of our own souls, and to launch such an attack, we have to keep terror away from our own hearts.... Terror struck into the hearts of the enemies is not only a means, it is the end itself. Once a condition of terror into the opponent’s heart is obtained, hardly anything is left to be achieved. It is the point where the means and the end meet and merge. Terror is not a means of imposing decision on the enemy; it is the decision we wish to impose on him.’

It is probably true that in every faith ordinary people will pick the parts they like best and practise those, while the scholars will work out an official version. In Islam the scholars had a particularly challenging task, given the mass of contradictory texts within the Koran. To meet this challenge they developed the rule of abrogation, which states that wherever contradictions are found, the later-dated text abrogates the earlier one. To elucidate further the original intention of Mohammed, they referred to traditions (hadith) recording what he himself had said and done. Sadly for the rest of the world, both these methods led Islam away from peace and towards war. For the peaceable verses of the Koran are almost all earlier, dating from Mohammed’s time in Mecca, while those which advocate war and violence are almost all later, dating from after his flight to Medina. Though jihad has a variety of meanings, including a spiritual struggle against sin, Mohammed’s own example shows clearly that he frequently interpreted jihad as literal warfare and himself ordered massacre, assassination and torture. From these sources the Islamic scholars developed a detailed theology dividing the world into two parts, Dar al-Harb and Dar al-Islam, with Muslims required to change Dar al-Harb into Dar al-Islam either through warfare or da’wa (mission).

So the mantra ‘Islam is peace’ is almost 1,400 years out of date. It was only for about 13 years that Islam was peace and nothing but peace. From 622 onwards it became increasingly aggressive, albeit with periods of peaceful co-existence, particularly in the colonial period, when the theology of war was not dominant. For today’s radical Muslims — just as for the mediaeval jurists who developed classical Islam — it would be truer to say ‘Islam is war’. One of the most radical Islamic groups in Britain, al-Ghurabaa, stated in the wake of the two London bombings, ‘Any Muslim that denies that terror is a part of Islam is kafir.’ A kafir is an unbeliever (i.e., a non-Muslim), a term of gross insult.

In the words of Mundir Badr Haloum, a liberal Muslim who lectures at a Syrian university, ‘Ignominious terrorism exists, and one cannot but acknowledge its being Islamic.’ While many individual Muslims choose to live their personal lives only by the (now abrogated) peaceable verses of the Koran, it is vain to deny the pro-war and pro-terrorism doctrines within their religion.

Could it be that the young men who committed suicide were neither on the fringes of Muslim society in Britain, nor following an eccentric and extremist interpretation of their faith, but rather that they came from the very core of the Muslim community and were motivated by a mainstream interpretation of Islam?

Muslims who migrated to the UK came initially for economic reasons, seeking employment. But over the last 50 years their communities have evolved away from assimilation with the British majority towards the creation of separate and distinct entities, mimicking the communalism of the British Raj. As a Pakistani friend of mine who lives in London said recently, ‘The British gave us all we ever asked for; why should we complain?’ British Muslims now have Sharia in areas of finance and mortgages; halal food in schools, hospitals and prisons; faith schools funded by the state; prayer rooms in every police station in London; and much more. This process has been assisted by the British government through its philosophy of multiculturalism, which has allowed some Muslims to consolidate and create a parallel society in the UK.

The Muslim community now inhabits principally the urban centres of England as well as some parts of Scotland and Wales. It forms a spine running down the centre of England from Bradford to London, with ribs extending east and west. It is said that within 10 to 15 years most British cities in these areas will have Muslim-majority populations, and will be under local Islamic political control, with the Muslim community living under Sharia.

What happens after this stage depends on which of the two main religious traditions among Pakistani-background British Muslims gains the ascendancy. The Barelwi majority believe in a slow evolution, gradually consolidating their Muslim societies, and finally achieving an Islamic state. The Deobandi minority argue for a quicker process using politics and violence to achieve the same result. Ultimately, both believe in the goal of an Islamic state in Britain where Muslims will govern their own affairs and, as the finishing touch, everyone else’s affairs as well. Islamism is now the dominant voice in contemporary Islam, and has become the seedbed of the radical movements. It is this that Sir Ian Blair has not grasped. For some time now the British government has been quoting a figure of 1.6 million for the Muslim population. Muslims themselves claim around 3 million, and this is likely to be far nearer to the truth. The growth of the Muslim community comes from their high birth-rate, primary immigration, and asylum-seekers both official and unofficial. There are also conversions to Islam.

The violence which is endemic in Muslim societies such as Pakistan is increasingly present in Britain’s Muslim community. Already we have violence by Pakistani Muslims against Kurdish Muslims, by Muslims against non-Muslims living among them (Caribbean people in the West Midlands, for example), a rapid growth in honour killings, and now suicide bombings. It is worth noting that many conflicts around the world are not internal to the Muslim community but external, as Muslims seek to gain territorial control, for example, in south Thailand, the southern Philippines, Kashmir, Chechnya and Palestine. Is it possible that a conflict of this nature could occur in Britain?

Muslims must stop this self-deception. They must with honesty recognise the violence that has existed in their history in the same way that Christians have had to do, for Christianity has a very dark past. Some Muslims have, with great courage, begun to do this.

Secondly, they must look at the reinterpretation of their texts, the Koran, hadith and Sharia, and the reformation of their faith. Mundir Badr Haloum has described this as ‘exorcising’ the terrorism from Islam. Mahmud Muhammad Taha argued for a distinction to be drawn between the Meccan and the Medinan sections of the Koran. He advocated a return to peaceable Meccan Islam, which he argued is applicable to today, whereas the bellicose Medinan teachings should be consigned to history. For taking this position he was tried for apostasy, found guilty and executed by the Sudanese government in 1985. Another modernist reformer was the Pakistani Fazlur Rahman, who advocated the ‘double movement’; i.e., understanding Koranic verses in their context, their ratio legis, and then using the philosophy of the Koran to interpret that in a modern, social and moral sense. Nasr Hamid Abu-Zayd, an Egyptian professor who argued similarly that the Koran and hadith should be interpreted according to the context in which they originated, was charged with apostasy, found guilty in June 1995 and ordered to separate from his wife.

The US-based Free Muslims Coalition, which was set up after 9/11 to promote a modern and secular version of Islam, has proposed the following:

1. A re-interpretation of Islam for the 21st century, where terrorism is not justified under any circumstances.

2. Separation of religion and state.

3. Democracy as the best form of government.

4. Secularism in all forms of political activity.

5. Equality for women.

6. Religion to be a personal relationship between the individual and his or her God, not to be forced on anyone.

This tempting vision of an Islam reformed along such lines is unlikely to be achieved except by a long and painful process of small steps. What might these be and how can we make a start? One step would be, as urged by the Prince of Wales, that every Muslim should ‘condemn these atrocities [the London bombings] and root out those among them who preach and practise such hatred and bitterness’. Universal condemnation of suicide bombers instead of acclamation as heroes would indeed be an excellent start.

Mansoor Ijaz has suggested a practical three-point action plan:

1. Forbid radical hate-filled preaching in British mosques. Deport imams who fail to comply.

2. Scrutinise British Islamic charities to identify those that fund terrorism. Prevent them receiving more than 10 per cent of their income from overseas.

3. Form community-watch groups comprising Muslim citizens to contribute useful information on fanatical Muslims to the authorities.

To this could be added Muslim acceptance of a secular society as the basis for their religious existence, an oath of allegiance to the Crown which would override their allegiance to their co-religionists overseas, and deliberate steps to move out of their ghetto-style existence both physically and psychologically.

For the government, the time has come to accept Trevor Phillips’s statement that multiculturalism is dead. We need to rediscover and affirm a common British identity. This would impinge heavily on the future development of faith schools, which should now be stopped.

Given the fate of some earlier would-be reformers, perhaps King Abdullah of Jordan or a leader of his stature might have the best chance of initiating a process of modernist reform. The day before the bombings he was presiding over a conference of senior scholars from eight schools of Islamic jurisprudence, and, amazingly, they issued a statement endorsing fatwas forbidding any Muslim from those eight schools to be declared an apostate. So reform is possible. The only problem with this particular action is that it may have protected Muslim leaders from being killed by dissident Muslims, but it negated a very helpful fatwa which had been issued in March by the Spanish Islamic scholars declaring Osama bin Laden an apostate. Could not the King re-convene his conference and ask them to issue a fatwa banning violence against non-Muslims also? This would extend the self-preservation of the Muslim community to the whole non-Muslim world.

Such reform — the changing of certain fairly central theological principles — will not be easy to achieve. It will be a long, hard road for Islam to get its house in order so that it can co-exist peacefully with the rest of society in the 21st century."

Dr Patrick Sookhdeo is Director of the Institute for the Study of Islam and Christianity.

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Fillibuster Pending?

Democrats seek view on Roe from Roberts by Charles Hurt (registration required)
Two key Senate Democrats yesterday said that federal Judge John G. Roberts Jr. will have a hard time being confirmed to the Supreme Court if he doesn't publicly state his position on past court cases such as the one that established abortion rights.

Vermont Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, said he doubts that Judge Roberts can be confirmed unless he agrees that Roe v. Wade -- the 1973 abortion case -- is "settled law."

And in a speech yesterday at the National Press Club, Sen. Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat and committee member, listed three "troubling" pitfalls that could upend Judge Roberts' nomination. The No. 2 pitfall was Judge Roberts' reluctance to discuss specific Supreme Court cases -- even ones that might resurface before the court.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

I posted earlier "Random is not a Strategy" in reference to New York's new policy, put into effect by Mayor Bloomberg, of searching back packs of people using the subway.

Michelle Malkin writes," "In the wake of the latest terrorist attacks in London, Mayor Bloomberg and the NYPD announced plans to conduct random searches of packages and backpacks carried by subway riders. 'Random,' of course, is a synonym for blind. And we all know what it means when you put blind bureaucrats in charge of homeland security: Grannies and toddlers, prepare to be on heightened grope alert."

Heh, heh.

"As eugenics passes through each of its stages -- from sterilizing the enfeebled at the beginning of the 20th century to aborting the disabled at the end of it and the beginning of the 21st -- man is indeed playing God but without any of His providence or care." --George Neumayr

Too Much Meddling

"Congress cannot grasp the idea that anything might conceivably be none of their business. Congressional meddling tends to be short on humility and long on hypocrisy."
--Alan Reynolds

Our founding fathers (I know this is not politically correct in some circles.)(Tough! I have a tendency to disregard political correctness.) were very fearful of a too big, too powerful central government running roughshod over states' rights. I'm in Mr. Reynolds corner on this one.

Re-enlistment of Armed Forces

"Buried in all the mainstream media coverage this week over new terrorist bombings in London, space shuttles that didn't launch, the trashing of Karl Rove and the nomination of a new Supreme Court justice was a little-noted item about reenlistments in the U.S. armed forces exceeding expectations. USA Today offered some prominence to the story, but it was widely ignored by most of the Fourth Estate. Perhaps that's because it's a 'good news story."
--Oliver North

This story had two strikes against it, minimizing its' chances to get news coverage:
1). It's a "good news" story, and
2). It's a good news story about the "hated army of Satan." Yes, I know, they
"support the troops."

Quotes on Judge Roberts

Quotes from a couple of HeavyHanded's favorite writers:

"If Judge Roberts has ever been guilty of jay-walking, you can believe that some shrill special interest group will dig that up and try to make him seem like a threat to the republic."
--Thomas Sowell

"Now it's Roberts' turn. Barely had the president finished announcing the nomination when the Dems rushed Sen. Chuck Schumer on air, hunched and five-o'clock-shadowed and looking like a bus-&-truck one-man Nixon revue. Schumer's line was that, as a judge, Roberts had too thin a paper trail. His message seemed to be: Look, we Dems have the finest oppo-research boys in the business and, if we can't get any dirt on this guy, that must mean it's buried real deep and is real bad; the very fact that we can't get anything on him is in itself suspicious."
--Mark Steyn


This week's "TheoLib" Award: "John Roberts is a Roman Catholic. How important to him is his religion? Do you think it might affect him as a Supreme Court Justice?"
--ABC's Barbara Walters

This week's "Leftmedia Buster" Award: "NPR's Nina Totenberg, who last week tagged Supreme Court nominee John Roberts as 'very, very conservative' and 'very, very, very conservative,' on 'Inside Washington' over the weekend described him as merely 'very conservative.' But she couldn't resist adding a modifier every time she applied the conservative label, also dubbing him 'a really conservative guy,' 'a hard-line conservative' and 'a clear conservative.' Plus, she emphasized how he's 'a conservative Catholic'."
--Brent Baker of the Media Research Center

From the Litmus Test Files: "We simply want to determine if Judge Roberts is a mainstream thinker. ... This is not, and let me emphasize that, this is not a game of 'gotcha' and document requests and in general, information requests are not an end, a goal to prove something. They're a means to simply determining Justice Roberts' judicial views. That's all we want."
--Chuck Schumer

"Judge John Roberts cannot be given the opportunity to make law for what may well be the next 30 years."
--spokesman for "Gay Men's Heath Crisis"

Well Said, Tommie Boy

"[I]n this battle against fundamentalist Islam, I am hardly preoccupied with political correctness, or who may or may not be offended. Indeed, al-Qa'ida cares little if the Western world is 'offended' by televised images of hostages beheaded in Iraq, subway bombings in London, train attacks in Madrid, or Americans jumping to their death from the Twin Towers as they collapsed. ... As long as this war goes on, being 'offended' should be the least of anyone's worries." --Rep. Tom Tancredo

Food for Thought .................

"The penalty good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." --Plato

"There will come a time when you believe everything is finished. That will be the beginning." --Louis L'Amour

"The Bible tells us to love our neighbors, and also to love our enemies; probably because they are generally the same people." --G. K. Chesterton

"Civilization is a limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessaries." --Mark Twain

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Authorities Arrest Men With NYC Maps, Video

Five Men Detained in New Jersey, Set to Be Deported
From ABC News
Five Egyptian men with maps of the New York City subway system and video of New York landmarks have been arrested by the Joint Terrorism Task Force in Newark, N.J., ABC News has learned.

FBI and law enforcement officials told ABC News the five men — four illegal immigrants and one law enforcement fugitive — were arrested Sunday night following a tip to the Newark Police Department. In addition to the subway maps and video, the men had train schedules and $8,000 in $20 and $50 bills.

The men were identified as: Karim Ahmed Abdel Latif Ahmed, 21; his brother Mahoud Ahmed Abdel Latif Ahmed, 19; Ahmed Mohamed Atta, 30; Mohamed Ibrahim Gaber, 34, and Mohamed Palat Anwar Jozain. When Newark authorities converged at the group's location at 246 Ferry St., Karim Ahmed answered the door and agreed to allow police to enter. Officers said they noticed the maps, and video cameras and Karim and his brother agreed to a search.

Karim said he had the maps because he had a new job as a street vendor. Initially, Karim said no one else was in the apartment, but police came upon the three other men upon further search.

FBI officials said the men have no known link to a terror network but noted that none of them could adequately explain the items they had in their possession, the large amount of money or their reasons for being in the United States. Mohamed Ibrahim Gaber has been a fugitive since he jumped ship from an Egyptian flagged freighter in September 2000.

The men, all of whom claimed to be unemployed civil or chemical engineers, are set to be deported by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Judge Roberts...........

A couple of interesting quotes. First, a quote from Brandeis University Prof. Anita Hill writing for Newsday.
"We don't know much about Roberts' political ideology, but we do know that his career has been built on membership in increasingly elitist institutions that include few women and Latinos or other ethnic minorities... Had these 'extraordinary' credentials set the standard for judicial nominations in 1982, Sandra Day O'Connor would never have been appointed. She never clerked. She never worked for a president. She never served as a federal judge"
Probably without realizing it, Prof. Hill, in a backwards way, is saying Judge Roberts is more qualified now than O'Connor was at the time because of his "extraordinary credentials." Even if she was being a bit sarcastic, she adequately laid out Justice O' Connors lack of experience when compared to Judge Roberts.

The implication here is pretty clear. Justice O"Connor was able and qualified to serve even though she "never clerked", or lawyered for an administration, and "never served as a federal judge."

But, wait. Little Chuckie Schumer says,
"There's no question that Judge Roberts has outstanding legal credentials and an appropriate legal temperament and demeanor. But his actual judicial record is limited to only two years on the D.C. Circuit Court. For the rest of his career, he has been arguing cases an as able lawyer for others, leaving many of his personal views unknown. For these reasons, it is vital that Judge Roberts answer a wide range of questions openly, honestly and fully in the coming months. His views will affect a generation of Americans, and it his obligation during the nomination process to let the American people know those views. The burden is on a nominee to the Supreme Court to prove that he is worthy, not on the Senate to prove that he is unworthy. ... I hope Judge Roberts, understanding how important this nomination is -- particularly when replacing a swing vote on the court -- will decide to answer questions about his views. Now that he is nominated for a position where he can overturn precedent and make law, it is even more important that he fully answers a broad range of questions."
So, once again, the left wants it both ways. Apparently, no federal court experience is not a problem, but two years is too little.

Chuckie Schumer opines that "the burden is on a nominee to the Supreme Court to prove that he is worthy, not on the Senate to prove that he is unworthy." If this is so, why then do the Dems go "digging for dirt"? Why do they demand papers that have legal protection because of separation of powers? They, after all, are looking for things "to prove that he is unworthy".

The only negatives to this point is that Roberts is white, male, Catholic, appointed by Bush, and not a liberal.

Also, shouldn't someone remind Sen. Schumer that the role of the courts is not to "make law"? Sen. Schumer also seems to be making the point that not all nominations should be subject to the same scrutiny. Some can get a pass and some will be grilled. It is because this nomination is a swing vote in his mind, and therefore deserves intense examination.

When Schumer was reminded of Ginsberg's refusal to answer questions on her views when she was up for nomination, and yet still breezed through the nomination process, Schumer replied, "It was a different time then."

Chuckie, you fool no one with this childish bafoonery. Well, except for the New Yorkers that keep sending you back to the Senate, that is.

It is front page news that the AFL-CIO is breaking apart in a dispute over how to revive labor's lagging fortunes. A total of four unions, with two of the largest and more successful unions, the Service Employees International and the Teamsters, are rebelling against the leadership of AFL-CIO President John Sweeney.

To many of us it seems apparent that they have become too political in nature and less driven to represent the broad base of their members and get things done on their behalf.

Look where the steel industry and auto workers are today. They have been members for what, forty plus years....or more? How's that been working out for them? But, by gum, they sure can tell us what is morally right when it comes to marriage, homosexuality, abortions, etc., etc., etc.

Go read the editorial at Opinion Journal "Very Old Labor Unions need a vision for the new global economy."

And report back to me, thank you.

Dem's New Social Security "Plan"

Captain Ed at Captain's Quarters reports that The Washington Post has a story on the Dem's new Social Security plan which does not appear to be much of a plan at all.

The The Washington Post story can be read here.

Captain writes, "The Democrats have taken a lot of criticism for talking about the coming crisis in Social Security financing for a decade before Bush came to office, and then suddenly pretending it didn't exist. When Bush presented his plans to reform Social Security, they tried to convince people that reform was unnecessary, which no one believes, and then deliberately decided to offer no alternative, which no one appreciated. Now they attempt to offer "retirement security" by focusing on the money the government doesn't confiscate without addressing the funds that it does."

Denial. Smoke and mirrors. Deception. That's our plan, man. Now go out and vote for us, 'cause we are looking out for you ... the little guy.

Barf bag, please.

Shocking Story Out of the Swamp.......

Democrats to delay Roberts hearings by Charles Hurt
"Senate Democrats want to draw out the confirmation of federal Judge John G. Roberts Jr. to the Supreme Court as long as possible, but they expressed little hope that they can prevent him from reaching the high court."

Who would have ever thought this was going to happen?


"I had no "idear" as John Kerry would say. You never hear these numbers talked about. It helps put things into perspective.

50,000 Iraqi insurgents dead, caught by Sharon Behn, The Washington Times
U.S. and Iraqi forces have killed or arrested more than 50,000 Iraqi insurgents in the past seven months, a former top general who has headed repeated Pentagon assessment missions to Iraq said yesterday.

"The consciousness of having discharged that duty which we owe
to our country is superior to all other considerations."

-- George Washington

Monday, July 25, 2005

Back off Muslims, imam warns Ottawa

"A controversial Toronto imam warned Public Safety Minister Anne McLellan at a closed-door meeting to stop "terrorizing" Canadian Muslims.

"If you try to cross the line I can't guarantee what is going to happen. Our young people, we can't control," Aly Hindy, the head of Scarborough's Salaheddin Islamic Centre, recalls telling the minister at the May meeting she held in Toronto with dozens of Muslim leaders."


"Sure, the invasion of Iraq was supposed to -- and will -- make us safer. But few said it would make us safer right away, and those who suggested otherwise were foolish for doing so. But why anybody should be shocked or outraged that terrorists are striking back even as they lose the war is beyond me. The only shock and outrage should be over their willingness to murder innocent civilians indiscriminately. And, perhaps, a little shock and outrage is called for in response to those who think such terrorism is justified at all."
--Jonah Goldberg

"[Terrorists are] all in it together, these killers, whatever their particular branch of the same, murderous fanaticism. There will always be those who dare not risk offending by calling a terrorist a terrorist, who would much prefer to overlook the gore and just go about their business, maybe even muttering something about how those people have been killing each other for thousands of years, and it's certainly no business of ours to interfere.... [But] our greatest weapon in this struggle is something beyond arms and armor, television monitors and metal detectors. It is solidarity. And the kind of moral clarity that can still call terror by its right name -- not insurgency or militancy but what it is: terror."
--Paul Greenberg

"Little Chuckie Schumer, allegedly the Senior Senator from New York, is a very clever lawyer and an advocate for all things liberal being implemented through the court system, so that he will not have to argue for them in a democratic debate he knows he would lose."
--Mac Johnson

As Well They Should

British stand by 'shoot to kill' by Paul Martin
The Washington Times
"Police and the government said yesterday they will not back away from a tough new "shoot-to-kill" policy when pursuing suspected terrorists or suicide bombers, despite the death on Friday of an innocent Brazilian who was shot after fleeing police."

HeavyHanded wants to know:
A). Why was he wearing a long coat? An out of season coat?
B). Why was he running?
C.) Why didn't he stop? Why did he ignore police requests?
D). Was he duped?

He comes out of a building that is being watched by the police because of suspicious activities there. He then acts suspiciously by performing points A,B, & C mentioned above. You cannot shoot him in the upper torso because that would detonate any bombs strapped to his chest. You cannot just merely maim him because he would then detonate the bombs himself immediately. All this has to be determined and analyzed by the police in just a couple of seconds.

It has been reported that in some instances, these homicide bombers (as in the case of some of the 9-11 plane hijackers) were not told that they were to become "martyrs". Unwittingly, they went to see Allah (a bit prematurely) and reap the rewards of the 72 virgins.

Is it possible that this guy was duped?

Letter from Londonistan

From The Weekly Standard
In the war on terror, Britain still thinks it's 1999.
by Irwin M. Stelzer

"MYTHS ARE NOT THE STUFF of which sensible policy is made. So it is important to scotch the myth that Britain and America have similar and equally effective responses to the terrorist attacks they have suffered. The hard fact is that America has decided that it is engaged in a war, while Britain has decided that it is confronted with what the leader of the Tory party (historically the foreign policy tough guys) calls a "criminal conspiracy" and the Economist calls a "'war on terror,'" complete with quotation marks. Put differently, 7/7 has evoked a policy response very different from 9/11.

It is, of course, true that the citizens of New York and London reacted similarly to the attacks on them: with remarkable courage and heightened civic solidarity. But similar reactions by individuals caught up in the terrorist storm do not necessarily make for similar reactions by governments. President Bush responded to the destruction of New York's World Trade Center by proclaiming through a bullhorn, "The people who knocked these buildings down will hear from all of us." And they did--the Taliban no longer control Afghanistan. Tony Blair, a stalwart when confronted with the idea of taking the attack on terror to wherever terrorism flourished, responded to the bombing on London's tube with eloquent appearances before the television cameras and the House of Commons, by convening meetings with leaders (although exactly who they lead remains uncertain) of the Muslim community to enlist their aid, and with his ministers to begin preparation for legislation that will be introduced, but not until some time in October, after the long, leisurely summer parliamentary recess. Bush critics wish that the president possessed Blair's eloquence; Blair critics wish that the prime minister possessed Bush's willingness to act."



G2 Bulletin reports exclusively the compelling evidence that Osama bin Laden may be hiding in China -- or at least close enough to the border to prevent U.S. troops from grabbing him.

That's the latest just posted in Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin for subscribers only.

"There are places in Afghan and Pakistan that border China. It happens to be the one place where no one is really looking. No one dare look there without creating an international crisis. It is a small strip of land between Tajikistan and Pakistan and the land terrain, even more rugged than most of Afghanistan, would make it exceedingly difficult to find any one."

"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society
but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened
enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion,
the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their
discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses
of constitutional power."

-- Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Confronting the threat by Mortimer Zuckerman
We must learn from the Islamifascism now contaminating Europe and take the steps necessary to prevent it from spreading to America.


"The outrages committed in the name of Islam are doubly painful in Britain and the Netherlands because, besides the grief and suffering these young Muslim men have caused, there is the viciousness of their betrayal of trust in these notably--perhaps one should say excessively--tolerant European countries."
"Economic deprivation does not explain this phenomenon. These killers are relatively well off, educated people, not the indigent and the uneducated. Europe has given sanctuary to second- and third-generation Muslim immigrants who may be even more radicalized than the first, a lost generation vulnerable to anyone who offers them an identity within the wholly imaginary community of their own Islamifascist creeds. This malignancy predates Iraq, Afghanistan, 9/11, and the Bush administration. Militant British Muslims have blamed everything and everybody except themselves, conveniently overlooking the obscenity that it is fanatical Muslims inspired by them who are doing the killing."
Britain has provided asylum to so many extremist Muslims that London has become the headquarters of Islamifascism in Europe. London's police chief estimates that there are hundreds of al Qaeda-trained terrorists in Britain.

Fun with numbers by John Leo
Why you just can't trust the "statistics" proffered by advocacy groups.

Bush bashing fizzles by Micheal Barone
Attempts by the left and the liberal media to undermine the president are running out of steam.

A thaw in Washington?

"I believe the public is telling us to knock it off and behave like adults," says Sen. Lindsey Graham.

By Gloria Borger
Sen. Pat Leahy has never been a George W. Bush pal. Neither has he been a favorite of the vice president, for that matter, who once famously advised the liberal Vermont senator to "go f - - - yourself ." But Leahy is the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, so about an hour after Justice Sandra Day O'Connor announced her resignation, Leahy found himself interrupting a press conference back home to take a call--from the president.

So what's going on here? Comity and consultation from a White House that has never been known for reaching out--even to members of its own party? Democrats publicly applauding the White House for finally paying attention to them? And the ultimate question: Is this for real or just for show? It's too early to say--but it's no mystery why all of this is happening: The public wants it that way.

Voter disgust. According to last week's NBC- Wall Street Journal poll, the constant bickering between the president and Congress has taken a toll on each side. Congress's approval rating is now embarrassingly low at 28 percent, and the president's is at 46 percent--which is among his lowest. "I believe the public is telling us to knock it off and behave like adults," says Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, a conservative who is a member of the bipartisan "Gang of 14" devoted to keeping peace in the Senate. So, it's just self-interest? "It doesn't matter why people get religion," he told me, "so long as they get it."


The idealist in me says, "I hope this is true. Wouldn't this be nice?" The realist in me says, "I find this to be highly unlikely."

Border Patrol agents catch African illegals

MCCOOK – Authorities catch several immigrants believed to be from Africa. A chopper is helping agents find the rest.

Ethiopians headed into the Valley Friday morning were intercepted by Border Patrol agents. Four of them were in custody, and agents said 11 more were caught around noon.

It was unclear if they were all from Africa, but they were transported to McAllen’s Border Patrol station to determine their nationalities.

It all started when a sheriff’s deputy tried to pull over a black truck. The driver took off and led police on a brief chase before stopping near a field. Several people jumped out of the truck and ran.

A convenience store owner in the area said he frequently see illegals walk into his store.

Agents started the proceedings to deport the Ethiopians.

Mexican standoff?

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
By Dimitri Vassilaros

The only thing more disturbing than Jorge Castaneda's testimony about illegal immigration was the lack of outrage from the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

Mr. Castaneda had been the Mexican foreign minister in the current Vicente Fox administration. He now is a New York University professor and independent candidate for president of Mexico.

Opponents of illegal immigration are incensed because Castaneda said the United States cannot secure its southern border without Mexico's blessing. And that it will not have Mexico's blessing until America agrees to a series of almost non-negotiable demands.

"Unless and until both governments bite the bullet and reach an understanding on an all-encompassing joint border security initiative, with adequate funding and infrastructure, the violence and criminal activity at the border will remain unabated," he told the senators.

Unilateral measures relating to immigration that are adopted by the U.S. without consultation and agreement with Mexico are doomed to fail, he said.

"If there is no cooperation from the source country on either a guest worker program, or an earned regularization scheme, I cannot see how the U.S. on its own will be able to deal with the enormous operational complexities involved."

Castaneda's testimony of July 12 is available online at: http://foreign.senate.gov/

"They constantly talk of respect but they do not respect our borders at all," said Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform. "I am 100 percent certain he is articulating views publicly that Mexican officials hold privately.

"When will we wake up and smell the coffee? We are not obligated to absorb the people that they won't find jobs for in their own country." (FULL STORY)

Teen jobs are going to illegal immigrants

By Charles Zehren / Newsday

The uncomfortable reality, as Andrew Sum sees it, is that there's a direct link between the steep national decline in teen employment rates and the growing practice of businesses hiring illegal immigrants and paying them off the books.

Sum is the director of the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University and lead author of a widely cited nationwide study projecting teen employment will continue to fall, with a drop to 36.7 percent this summer from 45 percent in 2000. That puts it at or near its lowest level since the data series began in 1948, despite a strengthening economy and improving overall labor market.

``The immigrant increase in employment is overwhelming. Every net new job created is taken by an immigrant. I know that's shocking, but that's the truth,'' Sum said offering his sober assessment. ``It happened in Massachusetts and New York in the 1990s, and now its happening in the country as a whole.'' (FULL STORY)

CFR's Plan to Integrate the U.S., Mexico and Canada

Just what do we know about the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR)? What is really behind our trade agreements and security partnerships with the other North American countries. The CFR has a 59-page CFR document that outlines, in detail, a five-year plan for the "establishment by 2010 of a North American economic and security community" with a common "outer security perimeter."

Phyllis Schafly has written a column about this topic and explains that "Community means integrating the United States with the corruption, socialism, poverty and population of Mexico and Canada. Common perimeter means wide-open U.S. borders between the U.S., Mexico and Canada."
"Community" is sometimes called "space" but the CFR goal is clear: "a common economic space ... for all people in the region, a space in which trade, capital, and people flow freely." The CFR's "integrated" strategy calls for "a more open border for the movement of goods and people."

The CFR document lays "the groundwork for the freer flow of people within North America." The "common security perimeter" will require us to "harmonize visa and asylum regulations" with Mexico and Canada, "harmonize entry screening," and "fully share data about the exit and entry of foreign nationals."

This CFR document, called "Building a North American Community," asserts that George W. Bush, Mexican President Vicente Fox, and Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin "committed their governments" to this goal when they met at Bush's ranch and at Waco, Texas on March 23, 2005. The three adopted the "Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America" and assigned "working groups" to fill in the details.

It was at this same meeting, grandly called the North American summit, that President Bush pinned the epithet "vigilantes" on the volunteers guarding our border in Arizona.

A follow-up meeting was held in Ottawa on June 27, where the U.S. representative, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, told a news conference that "we want to facilitate the flow of traffic across our borders." The White House issued a statement that the Ottawa report "represents an important first step in achieving the goals of the Security and Prosperity Partnership."

The CFR document calls for creating a "North American preference" so that employers can recruit low-paid workers from anywhere in North America. No longer will illegal aliens have to be smuggled across the border; employers can openly recruit foreigners willing to work for a fraction of U.S. wages.

Just to make sure that bringing cheap labor from Mexico is an essential part of the plan, the CFR document calls for "a seamless North American market" and for "the extension of full labor mobility to Mexico."

The document's frequent references to "security" are just a cover for the real objectives. The document's "security cooperation" includes the registration of ballistics and explosives, while Canada specifically refused to cooperate with our Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI).

To no one's surprise, the CFR plan calls for massive U.S. foreign aid to the other countries. The burden on the U.S. taxpayers will include so-called "multilateral development" from the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank, "long-term loans in pesos," and a North American Investment Fund to send U.S. private capital to Mexico.

The experience of the European Union and the World Trade Organization makes it clear that a common market requires a court system, so the CFR document calls for "a permanent tribunal for North American dispute resolution." Get ready for decisions from non-American judges who make up their rules ad hoc and probably hate the United States anyway.

The CFR document calls for allowing Mexican trucks "unlimited access" to the United States, including the hauling of local loads between U.S. cities. The CFR document calls for adopting a "tested once" principle for pharmaceuticals, by which a product tested in Mexico will automatically be considered to have met U.S. standards.

The CFR document demands that we implement "the Social Security Totalization Agreement negotiated between the United States and Mexico." That's code language for putting illegal aliens into the U.S. Social Security system, which is bound to bankrupt the system.

Here's another handout included in the plan. U.S. taxpayers are supposed to create a major fund to finance 60,000 Mexican students to study in U.S. colleges.

To ensure that the U.S. government carries out this plan so that it is "achievable" within five years, the CFR calls for supervision by a North American Advisory Council of "eminent persons from outside government . . . along the lines of the Bilderberg" conferences.

The best known Americans who participated in the CFR Task Force that wrote this document are former Massachusetts Governor William Weld and Bill Clinton's immigration chief Doris Meissner. Another participant, American University Professor Robert Pastor, presented the CFR plan at a friendly hearing of Senator Richard Lugar's Foreign Relations Committee on June 9.

Ask your Senators and Representatives which side they are on: the CFR's integrated North American Community or U.S. sovereignty guarded by our own borders.

More illegal immigrants in colleges

Enrollment has increased ninefold since the state allowed them to pay lower tuition
Fort Worth Star-telegram

Texas public colleges have seen a spike in enrollment of illegal immigrants since state lawmakers approved a measure allowing them to pay lower in-state tuition rates.

The number of illegal immigrants attending public institutions, particularly community colleges, has increased ninefold since the change was adopted, according to Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board data.

In 2001, Texas became the first state to offer in-state tuition and state financial aid to illegal immigrants. Eight other states, including California and New York, have since adopted similar measures. (FULL DETAILS)