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Posts Tagged ‘leftists’

Michael Moore vs. Abraham Lincoln

Posted by Richard on March 4, 2011

Fat cat (no pun intended) movie mogul Michael Moore, interviewed on something called Grit TV, has declared that the money of wealthy Americans isn't theirs, it's a "natural resource" that the government should seize and redistribute. I can't help but wonder why the interviewer didn't ask what Moore has done to redistribute the tens of millions of dollars of this "natural resource" that reside in his bank accounts.

[YouTube link]

Moore and those like him are guilty of two egregious errors. The first is an error of ignorance (willful ignorance, I'm tempted to say). They seem to believe that wealth (or money, which they seem to think is the same thing) is just a fixed pile of stuff that somehow, magically, exists — and that all that's necessary is deciding how it should be distributed. 

The second error is even more egregious, and it rests on the first — because it requires one to be ignorant of (or indifferent to) how and why wealth is created and even of the fact that there are those who create wealth. It's the moral error of believing that it's OK to take wealth from those who've created it to give it to someone else. As I noted, people like Moore can believe and justify this because they don't view those who've created the wealth as its creators, and thus don't view them as its rightful owners. Wealth just exists, or appears magically like manna falling from heaven, so it's a "natural resource" that we all collectively own.

Peter Wehner contrasted Moore's perspective with that of Abraham Lincoln, and quoted Lincoln: 

I don’t believe in a law to prevent a man from getting rich; it would do more harm than good. So while we do not propose any war upon capital, we do wish to allow the humblest man an equal chance to get rich with everybody else. …. I want every man to have the chance — and I believe a black man is entitled to it — in which he can better his condition — when he may look forward and hope to be a hired laborer this year and the next, work for himself afterward, and finally to hire men to work for him! That is the true system.

Allowing individuals the chance to better their condition is a legitimate moral claim that citizens demand of government. Government’s goal should be to ensure equality of opportunity instead of equality of outcome; to work toward a society where everyone has a fair shot rather than one where government enforces equality.

This issue — equality of opportunity vs. equality of outcome — is one of the great dividing lines between modern conservatism and liberalism. If given the choice between the philosophy of Michael Moore and the philosophy of Abraham Lincoln, my hunch is that the public will side with Lincoln.

I think the public sided with Lincoln in last November's elections. I think — I hope — enough people understand that increasing the total wealth of our society depends on ensuring that people have the opportunity to create wealth. And that the redistributionist philosophy of Moore and those like him destroys that opportunity. And thus makes us all poorer in the long run. 

Besides, it's not just that it would do more harm than good — it's just plain wrong. The person who creates something that didn't exist before is the rightful owner of that creation. Calling it a "natural resource" and redistributing it is theft, plain and simple. 

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Is it cluelessness, or part of a pattern?

Posted by Richard on February 8, 2011

On Thursday, the Obama administration's Director of National Intelligence assured Congress that the Muslim Brotherhood is a "largely secular" organization that has "eschewed violence" (a "spokesman" is now backing away from those words in the most weasely way). Dr. Zudhi Jasser, founder and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy strongly denounced this nonsense:

"The Muslim Brotherhood is the antithesis of a secular organization as asserted today by James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence. Clapper's statement presents a significant concern that our primary Intelligence officer has a complete lack of understanding of an organization that presents the greatest threat to the security of the United States. The Director of Intelligence is either grossly naïve or covering up for an ideology that is in an ideological war with the United States and western society.

The Muslim Brotherhood is built on the ideology of political Islam which adheres to a belief in Islamic Supremacy. To be a secular organization the Brotherhood would have to completely disavow the very beliefs that define the organization.

Further, the Muslim Brotherhood is a threat to the political process in a post-Mubarak Egypt and throughout the middle-east. Thugs like Mubarak have created an atmosphere that has allowed the Brotherhood to thrive. The United States needs to be active within the country of Egypt countering the ideology of the Brotherhood helping the people of Egypt develop liberty-minded, democratic infrastructure to secure the country's future. We need to demonstrate to Egyptians that freedom does not come in the form of Islamic law or in the rule of theocratic clerics.

Our Intelligence community cannot afford to allow political correctness or this severally mistaken understanding of the Brotherhood to enter the conversation of how we will confront the changes in Egypt."

Last Saturday, I shared Natan Sharansky's cautious optimism about events in Egypt. Today, much of my optimism has evaporated. It's become clear to me that the Obama administration, rather than supporting the forces of liberty and democracy, is either flailing cluelessly or deliberately aiding the Muslim Brotherhood's efforts to hijack this revolt against tyranny for the purpose of imposing their own Islamist tyranny.

Jamie Glazov noted that this isn't the first time that Obama has cozied up to the Muslim Brotherhood, and he argued that it's no surprise coming from America's "radical in chief":

The list of examples of the leftists engaging in political romances with tyrants is infinite: Noam Chomsky traveling to Lebanon in May 2006 to embrace Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah; Academic Norman Finkelstein, a Jewish leftist, venerating Hamas and Hezbollah; Naomi Klein calling out in a column in The Nation for Muqtada al-Sadr's killing fields to come to New York; Tom Hayden reaching the next stage of his totalitarian high by meeting Klein's hero, al-Sadr, in London; and British Member of Parliament George Galloway visiting Syria in November 2005, prostrating himself before its despot and giving a speech at Damascus University in which he denounced America and Israel and extended his support to every possible enemy of the United States – from the terrorists in Iraq to Fidel Castro and Hugo Chávez.

What Obama is pursuing with the Muslim Brotherhood, therefore, is simply to be expected. And in typical fashion, the left is clamoring behind him to indulge in its own romance with the Egyptian jihadist entity.

The deranged and delusional leftist support for the Muslim Brotherhood today is a replay of how the left supported the Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran in 1979. And without doubt, the left's love affair with the Khomeini revolution, a well-known tragic – and grotesque – story, documented in works like David Horowitz's "Unholy Alliance" and in my own "United in Hate," served as a revealing – and horrifying – example of this progressive impulse to worship tyranny.

David Solway provided additional examples of "Useful Jihadiots" of the left and their Islamist allies who are assuring us that the Muslim Brotherhood is a benign force. And back in June of 2009, Chris Carter examined Obama's "troubling history" with the Muslim Brotherhood and provided a damning look at that organization.
Our government is in the hands of a group of people who at least tolerate, and perhaps admire and support, practically anyone or anything that's anti-American and anti-Western. They are at least benignly acquiescent to and perhaps aiding and abetting the Muslim Brotherhood's efforts to take over what began as a pro-freedom movement.

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The cyber-collectivist threat

Posted by Richard on July 23, 2010

I was vaguely aware that a group of radical leftists had formed a new organization named "Free Press." And I assumed that their goal was to put control of the flow of information back into the "proper" hands. That they wanted to silence me. Well, not me specifically; they've never heard of me (let's be honest, how many people have?). But everyone like me.

I was right. Adam Thierer has the gory details (emphasis added):

There are many battle fronts in the war for human freedom, but perhaps the least-appreciated of these is the battle over America's communications and media marketplace and whether free markets or government mandates will ultimately rule them. This battle takes on added importance since all other public policy debates depend upon an unfettered press and robust, independent channels of communication.

What many on the far Left have long understood, and many defenders of freedom have failed to appreciate, is that the battle for control of media and communications policy is fundamentally tied up with the broader war for control of our economy and society. "Instead of waiting for the revolution to happen, we learned that unless you make significant changes in the media, it will be vastly more difficult to have a revolution," argues the prolific Marxist media theorist Robert W. McChesney. "While the media is not the single most important issue in the world, it is one of the core issues that any successful Left project needs to integrate into its strategic program."

Normally we wouldn't need to pay attention to what unrepentant ‘60's radicals or neo-Marxist university professors think about media and communications policy. In this case, however, it is essential we pay attention. First, McChesney is right in one sense: history reveals that almost every successful effort to impose sweeping controls over an economy / society was accompanied by government efforts to control press and communication systems. If the State is going to have any luck gaining widespread and far-reaching control of an economy, gaining more control over "the Press" – which means all of us these days – becomes an essential part of the "strategic program" for control. Second, we need to pay attention to these radicals because McChesney and the group that he and John Nichols of The Nation co-founded – the insultingly misnamed Free Press – have given this fight new immediacy with their relentless agitation for media and communications policy "reform." And they are not the only ones.

Read the whole thing. Thierer is correct: control over the flow of information is critical to control over the people. And control over the people is what McChesney, Nichols, and their many friends and ideological allies in the current administration want. 

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Another boot on another neck

Posted by Richard on June 25, 2010

The Democrats have reconciled House and Senate financial legislation differences, crafting yet another 2000-page bill that no one has read. They're prepared to pass it next week: 

After more than 20 hours of continuous wrangling, congressional Democrats and White House officials reached agreement on the final shape of legislation that would transform financial regulation, avoiding last-minute defections among New York lawmakers that had threatened to upend the bill.

Fannie and Freddie aren't much affected — the Socialist Democrats want to regulate everything except government. I'm guessing that their friends at Goldman Sachs and other liberal-dominated, generously-contributing firms will make out OK, too. As for the rest of the financial services industry, especially the little guys buried under a new mountain of regulations and red tape, and their customers — well, I suspect this observation is accurate: 

"My guess is there are three unintended consequences on every page of this bill," Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R., Texas) said of the nearly 2,000-page bill.

If passed into law, this abomination will give the Obama administration yet another boot on the neck of yet another industry. Apparently, the Socialist Democrats aren't going to rest until they fulfill Orwell's dystopian vision of a boot stomping a human face forever. 

They're calling this the Dodd/Frank Act. And they gave those two weasels, who share a significant portion of the blame for the housing bubble and resulting financial meltdown, a standing ovation. 

Patrick Dorinson had the best comment about this that I've seen: 

"But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”

– Speaker Nancy Pelosi on the health care bill, March 2010

"No one will know until this is actually in place how it works.”

– Sen. Chris Dodd, on House-Senate conference approval of financial reform, June 2010

“Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.”

– Mark Twain

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Heads in the sand

Posted by Richard on May 14, 2010

If you think I was too harsh in Naming the enemy, you need to watch Eric Holder, testifying before the House Judiciary Committee yesterday, respond to a simple, direct, and non-confrontational question by Rep. Lamar Smith. It's an amazing two minutes of video, at once infuriating and hilarious.

[YouTube link]

This pathological unwillingness to identify the root cause of the problem, to name our enemies, and to acknowledge the seriousness of the threat we face is going to get a lot more people killed. Depending on blind luck and inept bomb-making to keep us safe is a losing strategy. Pretending that the real terrorist threat comes from anti-government right-wing extremists, tea partiers, and opponents of Obamacare is … well, I don't know if it's contemptibly cynical or just self-delusional.

Stephen F. Hayes and Thomas Joscelyn explore this issue in depth in the May 17 issue of The Weekly Standard, noting that "success in the war on terror is not apprehending terrorists after their attacks fail. Success is preventing them from attempting the attack in the first place." I strongly suggest reading the whole thing, but here's an excerpt (emphasis added): 

So, three attacks in six months, by attackers with connections to the global jihadist network—connections that administration officials have gone out of their way to diminish.

The most striking thing about all three attacks is not what we heard, but what we haven’t heard. There has been very little talk about the global war that the Obama administration sometimes acknowledges we are fighting and virtually nothing about what motivates our enemy: radical Islam. 

This is no accident. Janet Napolitano never used the word “terrorism” in her first appearance before Congress as secretary-designate of Homeland Security on January 15, 2009. Shortly thereafter, the Washington Post reported that the Obama administration had dropped the phrase “Global War on Terror” in favor of “Overseas Contingency Operations.” And just last month, we learned that the White House’s forthcoming National Security Strategy would not use religious words such as “jihad” and “Islamic extremism.”

When asked why she did not utter the word “terrorism” in the course of her testimony, Napolitano explained that she used “man-caused disaster” instead to avoid “the politics of fear.” 

The Department of Homeland Security was created after the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history to prevent further terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. And the head of that department is worried that using the word “terrorism” is playing the politics of fear.

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Naming the enemy

Posted by Richard on May 5, 2010

David Harsanyi noticed that lots of people on the left were ready and willing to point a finger at “right-wingers” when the identity of the Times Square bomber was unknown. But now that the real perpetrator has been caught, they’re remarkably reluctant to talk about the global army to which he belongs (emphasis added):

Even as investigators were hunting for the perpetrator of the botched “man-caused disaster” in Times Square, our cool Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano was reassuring a frazzled nation that the failed bombing appeared to be an isolated incident — a “one-off” — and avoided the notion of (much less the word) “terrorism.”

“If I had to guess 25 cents, this would be exactly that,” explained Mayor Michael Bloomberg — who has plenty of quarters to spare — during the investigation’s early stages. “Homegrown, or maybe a mentally deranged person, or somebody with a political agenda that doesn’t like the health care bill or something. It could be anything.”

It could be anything, said the mayor of New York City. A mentally deranged person, perhaps? Maybe some crazy from the fundamentalist faction of around 56 percent of us who opposed health-care reform. After all, in the deep recesses of some imaginations, conservatives are not above murdering hundreds of tourists to make a point about Obamacare.

Of course, it turned out to be a Pakistani-American who’d moved his family to that country, returned there 13 times, and recently came back to the US after several months in an Islamic jihadist terrorist training camp learning how to make bombs. But the left (including the current administration) refuses to use words like “Islamist,” “jihadist,” or even “terrorist.”

In fact, upon learning that the bomber wasn’t a Tea Party member, Mayor Bloomberg’s first concern was that Pakistanis and Muslims not be treated unfairly because one of them was the perpetrator. The good mayor has certainly never expressed such concern regarding Tea Party members or opponents of government-controlled health care.

Here’s the nasty truth: the far left — including the current administration, most of the leadership of the Socialist Democrat Party, and the majority of the mainstream media — considers conservatives and libertarians to be the real, dangerous enemy. They view Islamofascism either as nothing but a minor nuisance or as an understandable effort to diminish America’s illegitimate power in the world.

In the last two major terrorist attacks — Times Square and the Christmas airline bombing attempt — we were incredibly lucky. Regarding the Shazad attempt, the Homeland Security folks are all congratulating each other, but they have no reason whatsoever to do so. If Shazad had remembered his lessons better, there would have been carnage in Times Square. If just a few more minutes had passed, he’d have gotten clean away. They got lucky on all counts.

Their luck is going to run out.

The Socialist Democrats and their shills in the media are more concerned about those who oppose their domestic political agenda than they are about the global movement they refuse to even name — an Islamist movement that has declared war on this country and is committed to its destruction. This is insane. And in the case of those who took an oath of office, it’s a serious dereliction of duty.

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Help the rich pay more taxes

Posted by Richard on April 10, 2010

This weekend, I'm finally working on my taxes. But after several hours of getting paperwork together and entering data into H & R Block At Home (the new name for TaxCut), I had to take a break. So I've been catching up on neglected reading, like the past week's posts at Mark Perry's excellent Carpe Diem.

There, I learned that a group of millionaire leftists (it's a much underappreciated fact that most of the very wealthy are also very liberal) has been loudly complaining about being undertaxed. Mark Perry suggested that they don't have to wait for their tax rates to be raised to pay more. They can, for instance, make a gift to the U.S. Treasury or simply not itemize deductions, which would likely increase their tax liability significantly. 

Of course, they're not interested in doing such things — they're posturing for ideological reasons. And their goal isn't just to increase their own taxes, which they could do easily (and privately), but to increase other people's taxes, too. 

But in case there's a millionaire out there who sincerely is looking for ways to pay more taxes (and happens to be reading this blog), I've got another suggestion: you can pay other people's taxes. It would be a double whammy of altruism — you'd be not only doing more to support the commonweal, you'd also be performing acts of charity for those less fortunate than you. 

Of course, your charity would have to go to those who actually pay taxes. And according to this other Carpe Diem post, that eliminates almost 50% of households. So these charitable gestures would largely have to be directed toward middle-class taxpayers. Of which there are many.

Since I came up with the idea, I think it's only appropriate that I volunteer to be the first recipient. 

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The bizarre Amy Bishop story

Posted by Richard on February 18, 2010

UPDATE: Corrected the four instances, including the title, where I somehow managed to rename Ms. Bishop "Hunt." My only explanation is that I had "Hunt" on my mind due to the convergence of Huntsville and Delahunt — that, and my Old-timer's Disease.

For those of you who haven't kept up with the story of Amy Bishop, the sociopathic professor who shot three fellow faculty members at the University of Alabama at Huntsville last Friday, James Taranto has a nice summary of her bizarre history. (Read the rest of the post, too. Like most of his Best of the Web Today articles, there's some interesting and very funny stuff.)

For additional details about Bishop's earlier shooting of her brother (and the pass she was given on that, apparently by the about-to-retire Representative Bill Delahunt), check this JammieWearingFool post. For much more about Bishop, check the links at Beltway Blips

For a classic example of leftist spinning, check out this Mediaelites post. It begins by dismissing the characterization of Bishop as a socialist by claiming that it's based on "one lone, anonymous comment left on Dr. Amy Bishop’s profile." Well, it's not the only evidence that she's a hard-core leftist (sorry, I've lost the link, but the Beltway Blips link or a Google search should turn up some of the other evidence). But before dissing the source, Mediaelites might note that this "lone, anonymous comment" praises her class and is by far the most positive assessment of the five you posted. So it's not like this "lone, anonymous comment" was an attack or criticism — shouldn't that be a factor in considering whether its a "right-wing smear" or not? 

Mediaelites then proceeds to quote from Bishop's husband's complaint about something to the FTC (no context is provided):

The government is not allowed to intrude on us without a court order. These companies (often foreign or foreign owned) should not have more rights to us than our own Government. The Constitution protects us from the Government, what protects us from these voyeurs?

High priced lobbyists are not a replacement for democracy. Our privacy needs armor plated protection.

“By the people … for the people …”
“Buy the people … for the Corporations …”

And based on that, Mediaelites argues that maybe Bishop and her husband aren't socialists, but right-wing libertarians! 

They’re much more in line with the beliefs of the libertarians who currently support that Frankenstein of Bircher and Reaganite ideologies, the Tea Party Movement.

Um, yeah, right. Because everyone knows that people who rail against corporations (in some context Medialites declines to provide) are more likely to be libertarians than socialists. And libertarians, being so generally illiterate and ignorant of the meaning of "rights," are inclined to use such absurd phrases as "more rights to us than our own Government." 

Nice try, dumbass. 

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Brzezinski: protect our enemies from our friends

Posted by Richard on September 21, 2009

Zbigniew Brzezinski, who was National Security Advisor to America's Worst President (so far), is calling for the United States to come to the defense of Iran if it faces attack. No, really. I'm not making this up. In the Bizarro World of today's left, which is reflexively sympathetic to anyone and anything anti-American or anti-Israel, this kind of vile suggestion actually makes sense:

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Zbigniew Brzezinski said the United States should make clear that it will attack Israeli jets if they fly over Iraq on their way to attack Iran.

"We are not exactly impotent little babies," said Brzezinski, national security adviser during the Carter administration, in an interview with The Daily Beast Web site when asked how aggressive President Obama can be in telling Israel that a military strike in Iran is not in America's interest. "They have to fly over our airspace in Iraq. Are we just going to sit there and watch?

"We have to be serious about denying them that right," continued Brzezinski, who endorsed Obama early in the Democratic primary but was not an official adviser to the campaign. "That means a denial where you aren't just saying it. If they fly over, you go up and confront them. They have the choice of turning back or not. No one wishes for this but it could be a Liberty in reverse."

Israeli forces mistakenly attacked the USS Liberty during the 1967 Six-Day War.

Brzezinski is actually arguing that, should Israel go after Iran's nuclear weapons program to preempt another holocaust, America's national security interests would be served by going to war with Israel in order to protect a regime that wants to create "a world without America and Israel." If that isn't right out of Bizarro World, I don't know what is. 

This contemptible slimeball not only thinks we should kill Israelis to protect the Islamofascists who want to exterminate them, he has the nerve to justify it as "Liberty in reverse." As if a premeditated attack on Israeli jets were morally equivalent to a tragic case of mistaken identity.

Brzezinski apparently shares Carter's loathing of Israel and Jews and his affection for radical Islamists.

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Dissent = racism?

Posted by Richard on September 17, 2009

Jimmy Carter — America's worst president (so far), the man who helped Hugo Chavez steal an election, the vicious anti-Semite whose hateful and dishonest book about Israel has been endorsed by Osama bin Laden, the man who never met a left-wing dictator he didn't like — has declared that both Rep. Joe Wilson's heckle and the "overwhelming majority" of other criticisms of the President are rooted in racism.

And Carter is far from alone. That claim has been echoed by a growing number of Democratic politicians, Chris Matthews, ABC "News," NBC "News," Maureen Dowd, … the list is long.

So if the 55% of Americans (and 65% of doctors) who oppose government-controlled health care are overwhelmingly racist, how did a black man get elected President? If Republicans and conservatives are all racists, how is it possible that Obama got more Republican votes and conservative votes than John Kerry got? Did they only notice his skin color after the "stimulus" package, nationalization of the auto companies, massive spending increases, and attempt to take over health care?

The charge of racism has become the left's all-purpose weapon to stifle criticism and put their opponents on the defensive. But it's grown tiresome and annoying, and I think they've gone to that well once too often. According to a new Rasmussen poll, only 12% of voters agree that most opponents of government-controlled health care are racists. Even among Democrats, only 22% agree. Predictably, 88% of Republicans reject the idea, but significantly, so do 78% of those unaffiliated with either party.

I suspect the left's attempt to smear all opposition as racist will backfire. But in the meantime, it does serious harm to the public discourse in this country. They should be ashamed.

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Pledging to serve the President

Posted by Richard on September 5, 2009

Have you seen the "I pledge" video by Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher (it's produced by Oprah's company, Harpo Productions), and featuring a score of their whackjob Hollyweird friends? It dates all the way back to inauguration day, but someone has recently been promoting it anew (over 100,000 new views in the past few days). A friend sent me the link, and it was new to me.

I found it very disturbing, and I'm not going to embed it here for fear that someone might think I'm promoting, endorsing, or approving it. But here's "Ashton Kutcher's Creepy Pledge" (it's really Demi Moore who utters the creepiest part), a 48-second rejoinder that starts with the money quote from the Kutcher-Moore video: 

[YouTube link]

You might also want to check out "Pledging to be a Servant" (embedding disabled), Penn Jillette's 6-minute response. It's a bit rambling, but it expresses exactly the revulsion, disbelief, and sense of ickiness that I felt.

"I pledge" is the quintessential expression of both the cult of collectivism and the cult of personality. I wonder how long until these people start a movement to appoint Obama "President for Life"?

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Manufacturing consent in Denver

Posted by Richard on August 30, 2009

Since I still haven't posted a report on Friday's rally in support of government-controlled health care and I'm feeling lazy today, I'll refer you to El Marco's excellent report and photo essay.

Especially noteworthy: The line to enter the rally site moved slowly, as staff members with clipboards required attendees to put down their name and address to be allowed in. Those who asked were told it was a security thing. Later, Rep. Ed Perlmutter thanked everyone for signing and said the names would be sent to Washington to show support for Obamacare.

The Saturday Denver Post story lived down to their usual standard (I really miss the Rocky; their reporting certainly wasn't without its problems, but at least they didn't always err on the same side). For instance, reporter Mike McPhee said this: 

About 50 to 60 protesters stood off the school grounds, across West 32nd Avenue, waving banners. Their chants were drowned out by the much larger, noisier crowd. 

Fail. We weren't across West 32nd. We were on the same side of the street as the high school (the rally location). Our chants weren't drowned out because we weren't chanting.

Oh, people would shout things from time to time (usually in response to something shouted our way by the l'Obamatized attendees passing by us). And then there was the Paulian woman who kept shouting "arrest the banksters!" when she wasn't trying to tell people the "troof" about 9/11. (It disturbs me that for over a decade, I lent financial support to Ron Paul and thus helped in some way to make this insane movement possible.)

McPhee's story did provide a quote from Rep. Perlmutter that, if accurate, is quite revealing regarding his understanding of the Constitution and the difference between government and private businesses: 

"My daughter has epilepsy, and she's being discriminated against because of her prior condition," he told the cheering crowd. "We're not going to let her get pushed aside.

"Under the 14th Amendment, we are guaranteed equal protection. People with prior conditions are not being protected."

I shake my head in sadness and disbelief.


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The ACLU’s domestic surveillance program

Posted by Richard on August 28, 2009

No one has ever overestimated the hypocrisy and willingness to hide behind situational ethics of the American left. Michelle Malkin:

Savor the silence of America's self-serving champions of privacy. For once, the American Civil Liberties Union has nothing bad to say about the latest case of secret domestic surveillance — because it is the ACLU that committed the spying.

Last week, the Washington Post reported on a new Justice Department inquiry into photographs of undercover CIA officials and other intelligence personnel taken by ACLU-sponsored researchers assisting the defense team of Guantanamo Bay detainees.

According to the report, the pictures of covert American CIA officers — "in some cases surreptitiously taken outside their homes" — were shown to jihadi suspects tied to the 9/11 attacks in order to identify the interrogators.

Where is the concern for the safety of these American officers and their families? Where's the outrage from all the indignant supporters of former CIA agent Valerie Plame, whose name was leaked by Bush State Department official Richard Armitage to the late Robert Novak?

Lefties swung their nooses for years over the disclosure, citing federal laws prohibiting the sharing of classified information and proscribing anyone from unauthorized exposure of undercover intelligence agents.

Now, caught red-handed blowing the cover of CIA operatives, they shrug their shoulders and dismiss it as "normal" research on behalf of "our clients."

But don't you dare question their love of country. Spying to stop the next 9/11 is treason, you see. Spying to stop enhanced interrogation of Gitmo detainees is patriotic.

Well, sure. Just like dissent is the highest form of patriotism when there's a Republican president, but with a Democrat in office, dissent is the stirring up of hate and a manifestation of dangerous extremism.


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All about that attack on the CO Democratic Party HQ

Posted by Richard on August 28, 2009

I've been meaning to post something about the vandalizing of state Democratic Party headquarters a couple of days ago. Around 3 AM, someone smashed a bunch of their windows with a hammer. The windows targeted were the ones with pro-Obamacare signs in them. There was immediate tsk-tsking about "right-wing extremists" and efforts to link this at least in spirit to the Tea Party movement, the "raucous" town hall attendees, and the Republican Party. Among those doing so was Democratic Party State Chair Pat Waak (emphasis added):

"We ought to be having a serious, conscientious debate about what's best for the country," Waak said. "Clearly there's been an effort on the other side to stir up hate. I think this is the consequence of it."

But this is the age of Google and online data. After one of the perps, Maurice Schwenkler, was arrested, it took about 15 minutes to discover that he is a radical leftist who last fall worked for the Colorado Citizens Coalition, an SEIU front organization that worked on behalf of Democratic candidates. Its major contributors included the AFL-CIO, NARAL, and two of the ultra-rich leftists who over the past few election cycles have bought the State of Colorado for the Democrats, Tim Gill and Pat Stryker. 

Schwenkler was also arrested at the Republican National Convention. So much for the "right-wing extremists" meme. Tell DHS they can go back to researching the "right-wing threat" on those wacko leftist websites from which they've been getting their best information.

The People Press Collective has been all over this from the beginning and has everything you'll ever want to know. Start at the bottom of the post and work your way up through the baker's dozen updates.

As an earlier PPC post put it, this was "More Reichstag Fire than Kristallnacht."

If you're as smart as I thing you are (you're reading this, aren't you?), you won't be surprised to learn that the Democrats aren't offering any apologies. 

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Sheehan still protesting war

Posted by Richard on August 19, 2009

Mama Sheehan (a.k.a. "Mama Moonbat") is going to try doing to Barack Obama what she did to George Bush:

Cindy Sheehan, whose son died in Iraq, will join hundreds protesting the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq at Martha's Vineyard where Pres. Obama and his family will be vacationing.

Sheehan will be arriving on Tuesday August 25, 2009.

Her statement was released from her home in California:

“First of all, no good social or economic change will come about with the continuation or escalation of the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. We simply can’t afford to continue this tragically expensive foreign policy.

“Secondly, we as a movement need to continue calling for an immediate end to the occupations even when there is a Democrat in the Oval Office. There is still no Noble Cause no matter how we examine the policies. …”

Byron York noted that, judging from the recent Netroots Nation conference (successor to YearlyKos), most of her former allies won't be joining, or supporting, or even paying much attention to her (emphasis added): 

The meeting didn't draw much coverage, but the views of those who attended are still, as they were in 2006, a pretty good snapshot of the left wing of the Democratic party.

The news that emerged is that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have virtually fallen off the liberal radar screen. Kossacks (as fans of DailyKos like to call themselves) who were consumed by the Iraq war when George W. Bush was president are now, with Barack Obama in the White House, not so consumed, either with Iraq or with Obama's escalation of the conflict in Afghanistan. In fact, they barely seem to care.

As part of a straw poll done at the convention, the Democratic pollster Stanley Greenberg presented participants with a list of policy priorities like health care and the environment. He asked people to list the two priorities they believed "progressive activists should be focusing their attention and efforts on the most." The winner, by far, was "passing comprehensive health care reform." In second place was enacting "green energy policies that address environmental concerns."

And what about "working to end our military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan"? It was way down the list, in eighth place.

Perhaps more tellingly, Greenberg asked activists to name the issue that "you, personally, spend the most time advancing currently." The winner, again, was health care reform. Next came "working to elect progressive candidates in the 2010 elections." Then came a bunch of other issues. At the very bottom — last place, named by just one percent of participants — came working to end U.S. involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan.

For many liberal activists, opposing the war was really about opposing George W. Bush. When Bush disappeared, so did their anti-war passion.

On an earlier York column about Sheehan, commenter RHO1953 said it rather nicely: 

I do not agree with Ms. Sheehan about anything. We probably couldn't reach consensus about the time of day, but I have to give her credit for consistency. She believes in her cause irrespective of whether a liberal or conservative is in power. At least she's not a hypocrite like Pelosi, Reid, Waxman, Murtha, Kerry and Durbin.

At, Rick Moore contrasted the effectiveness of the anti-war movement and the anti-socialized-medicine movement: 

The left has been strangely silent about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan since rainbows and unicorns came into power in January, but our favorite ditch person, Cindy Sheehan, Mama Moonbat herself, wants the antiwar left to mimic the Tea Party protesters who are thwarting Obamacare. The antiwar left griped for years and held big rallies, but never had the kind of effect on national policy that the anti-Obamacare folks have had in a few weeks.

Why? Republicans knew she and her merry band of Code Pinkos were a bunch of kooks and they weren't intimidated. They just ignored the petulant outbursts. Obama knows he's not dealing with kooks, but people who could really make an impact on his presidency.

Well, the biggest difference is numbers. It's clear from the turnouts at tea parties and town halls and the recent poll numbers that public sentiment has swung fast and hard against socialized medicine, and the anti-Obamacare movement has the support of the majority already.

That didn't happen with the anti-war movement. For years, they were clearly a small minority. Eventually, as the sectarian fighting undermined support and war fatigue set in, a significant portion of the population became nominally opposed to the Iraq campaign, but for the vast majority of them it was never strong, strident opposition — just discouragement, disillusionment, and disinterest. We never saw mainstream America joining the whackjobs at the anti-war rallies. 

Anyone who's been to a tea party rally, on the other hand, knows that it's very much mainstream America. 

Moore added: 

Let's see if Obama is as tolerant of her protests as Bush was.

Oh, I think he will be. Most of her cohort have moved on, and the media are focused on the "right-wing crazies" who are killing health care reform and inexplicably failing to show the proper respect for our enlightened rulers in Washington. Sheehan will get little attention and pose no significant challenge to Obama on the war issue.

If anything, Obama may welcome such smatterings of dissent from the left. They permit him to position himself as attacked by extremists on both sides, and therefore clearly the voice of reason and moderation. Yeah, that's the ticket.

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