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Friday, 21 October 2011
If You Play with Fire. . .
Topic: Decline of the West


…you’re liable to get your fingers burned. Barack Obama and the Democrats should have recalled that tidbit of folk wisdom before they started fawning all over the Occupy Wall Street mob. For this is the result:


After the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee sent a recent email urging supporters to sign a petition backing the wave of Occupy Wall Street protests, phones at the party committee started ringing.

Banking executives personally called the offices of DCCC Chairman Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) and DCCC Finance Chairman Joe Crowley (D-N.Y.) last week demanding answers, three financial services lobbyists told POLITICO.


“They were livid,” said one Democratic lobbyist with banking clients.


The execs asked the lawmakers: “What are you doing? Do you even understand some of the things that they’ve called for?” said another lobbyist with financial services clients who is a former Democratic Senate aide.


Democrats’ friends on Wall Street have a message for them: you can’t have it both ways.


“You can’t have it both ways.” Something tells me that’s going to be a tough sell to Mr. Wonderful…excuse me, President Obama…for whom having it both ways is both a political principle and a lifestyle choice.

Posted by tmg110 at 11:25 AM EDT
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Thursday, 20 October 2011
Death of a Tyrant
Topic: Decline of the West


If this story is true—as it appears to be—the world has seen the last of one of its most repulsive tyrants. Muammar Qaddafi’s dictatorial sojourn began in 1969 when as a young army officer he engineered the coup that toppled the Libyan monarchy, emerging as Libya’s undisputed strongman. Colonel Qaddafi (as with false modesty he was pleased to style himself) not only oppressed his own people but lent support to terrorist groups around the world, from the PLO to the IRA. Among his many crimes was the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, which killed 270 people including many Americans.


Despite his blood-handed record, in the final period of his rule Qaddafi proved adept at managing relations with Europe and the United States. In 2003, his government admitted responsibility (though not guilt—go figure) for the Lockerbie bombing and agreed to pay compensation to the families of the victims. Qaddafi further curried favor with the US by agreeing to dismantle his weapons of mass destruction programs and cooperate with the CIA in the pursuit of 9/11 terrorists. In short order, he became the beneficiary of Western largesse. The US lifted economic sanctions on Libya and reestablished diplomatic relations with the Qaddafi regime. He was feted in Brussels by the European Union. Disgracefully, then-US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and British Prime Minister Tony Blair kowtowed to the Libyan tyrant during visits to Tripoli.


This degenerate thug with his lunatic outfits, his incoherent rants and his eccentric brutality will not be missed. But it’s a shame—and a telling commentary—that the so-called world community tolerated Colonel Muammar Qaddafi for so long.

Posted by tmg110 at 11:29 AM EDT
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Welcome, Home Lexi!
Topic: Freedom's Guardian

PFC Gregg arrived in Chicago late Monday night. We met her at Midway Airport and brought her home to Granger. After a couple of weeks in Florida/Arizona/Las Vegas, you'd think she'd be ready for some downtime. But no: Lexi and her mother abandoned me yesterday afternoon for an overnight casino trip. But I'm not complaining. It's great to have my girls together again, albeit for a matter of days. And who knows? Maybe this time they'll win big!

Posted by tmg110 at 10:37 AM EDT
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Monday, 17 October 2011
Barry Plays a Joker
Topic: Decline of the West


You don’t need the political second sight of a Machiavelli or a Karl Rove to perceive that Barack Obama has decided to play the populist card in his increasingly challenging quest for reelection. “Millionaires and billionaires,” “Wall Street,” “Pass this bill right now”—the script is coming together before our eyes.


And it’s a mistake to think that a product of elite privilege can’t pose as a populist. FDR—no horny-handed son of toil he—turned that trick quite effectively with his condemnations of Wall Street’s “economic royalists.” But Roosevelt, though in reality a cold man, was adept at projecting an aura of bland geniality—leading Oliver Wendell Holmes, no less, to remark that FDR possessed “a first-class temperament.”


Three years into his presidency, no one could make a remark like that about Barack Obama. It makes for funny yet sad reading to revisit Christopher Buckley’s 2008 column in the Daily Beast, wherein he threw John McCain under the bus and endorsed the Messiah:


“[H]aving a first-class temperament and a first-class intellect, President Obama will (I pray, secularly) surely understand that traditional left-politics aren’t going to get us out of this pit we’ve dug for ourselves.… Obama has in him—I think, despite his sometimes airy-fairy “We are the people we have been waiting for” silly rhetoric—the potential to be a good, perhaps even great leader. He is, it seems clear enough, what the historical moment seems to be calling for.


Wince! Seldom has the proposition that a high IQ does not necessarily imply good political judgment been so resoundingly validated.


So can Barry fake his way through a populist campaign without looking as phony as, well, John Edwards? Nah. With his palpable sense of entitlement, his thin skin and his perfect trouser creases, Barack H. Obama possesses all the populist appeal of a corporate jet.

Posted by tmg110 at 8:24 PM EDT
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The Face of OWS
Topic: Liberal Fascism


Here it is:

























That’s Che Guevara, in case you didn’t know, and according to one eyewitness, his face is all over the place at the Occupy Wall Street protests.


Writing for the New York Post, Charles Gasparino tells what he saw during a visit to the protest site:


It’s not an overstatement to describe Zuccotti Park as New York’s Marxist epicenter. Flags with the iconic face of the Marxist revolutionary Che Guevara are everywhere; the only American flag I saw was hanging upside down. The “occupiers” openly refer to each other as “comrade,” and just about every piece of literature on offer (free or for sale) advocated socialism in the Marxist tradition as a cure-all for the inequalities of the American economic system.


Glancing across the room, I see on my bookshelves half a dozen volumes that document Marxism’s horrific real-world consequences: the arrests and purges, the torture, the executions, the Gulag—the bloody reign of terror in which Che Guevara gloried. And to judge from Che’s continuing popularity among our own aspiring Bolsheviks, there’d be no lack of volunteers for the wet work necessary to purge American society of “harmful elements” like corporate CEOs, bankers, hedge fund managers and business owners. Their hero, Che, came to enjoy enemies of the people before Cuba’s revolutionary firing squads. No doubt they’d develop a taste for it as well.

Posted by tmg110 at 2:33 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, 17 October 2011 3:02 PM EDT
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Cain's Class Act
Topic: Decline of the West


I just watched Herman’s Cain’s Sunday appearance on Meet the Press. In this interview, conducted by David Gregory, Cain delivered a solid performance. I was once more impressed by his unflappability. Cain fields tough questions with good humor and defends his ground without rancor. If he thought that any of Gregory’s questions were snarky or unfair, he didn’t let on.


The entire interview can be viewed here, and I strongly advise you to check it out.


Make no mistake about it: Herman Cain is a serious candidate with a real shot at the GOP nomination. He many not have the money, organization or campaign experience that Mitt Romney commands, but Cain connects with voters. Unlike Barack Obama, Herman Cain possesses a first-class temperament. That could take him a long way.

Posted by tmg110 at 12:31 PM EDT
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No Class Barry
Topic: Decline of the West


Here’s something that, if you voted for Barack Obama in 2008, should give you pause in 2012: Obama’s Rising Bitterness


Obama has become a bitter man—bitter at the GOP, bitter at some of his own liberal allies, bitter at the press, and even bitter at the public, whom he now says has “gone a bit soft” (a revelation that coincides with the public turning hard against the president and his policies).


That Peter Wehner over at Commentary, and his blog post on the subject should be read in full. One of candidate Obama’s biggest selling points was the claim that he possesses a “first-class temperament” (as was said of FDR). It’s a claim that has failed to pass the acid test of the presidency. Particularly where his relations with the media are concerned, Obama stands revealed as a thin-skinned, petulant whiner.


Wehner believes that Obama’s temperament is far closer to Richard Nixon’s than to FDR’s. But he adds this caveat:


Among the differences between Nixon and Obama when it comes to the press is that the former was a maligned figure by many in the media, who didn’t particularly like Nixon and strongly disagreed with his policies (particularly his stance on the Cold War​ and in the Alger Hiss​ case). Obama, on the other hand, received press treatment that was as favorable as any presidential candidate we have seen. But for Obama, that has not been enough. He seems to believe that even as president he should not be challenged; and for a reporter to challenge him is a sign of disrespect, ignorance, and/or malice.


Too true! For Obama of all people to complain about unfair treatment in the media is just comical in its disconnection from reality. Even when they do criticize some policy or action of his administration, reporters are careful to give the President the benefit of as much doubt as can be mustered. Simply comparing the coverage of the Enron and Solyndra scandals shows you how fortunate Obama is in his treatment by the mainstream media. But as Wehner so aptly observes, our Barry is not the sort of man to tolerate even the most mildly phrased criticism.


If, as seems probably at this point, Barack Obama is turned out of office in 2012, you can chalk it up to bad policies exacerbated by sheer lack of class.

Posted by tmg110 at 11:51 AM EDT
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Friday, 14 October 2011
By This Sign Will You Know Them
Topic: Liberal Fascism


Given the leftie orientation of the Occupy Wall Street protests, the fact that it has attracted Jew-bashing anti-Semites is really no surprise. Israel, after all, is the country that progressives love to hate. Both here and in Europe, condemnation of Israel (and pious hand-wringing over the plight of the Palestinian Arabs) is employed to spread a gloss of respectability over the anti-Semitism of the progressive elites. This explains why OWS demonstrations are graced with rhetoric such as this:


[On] October 3, a protester described as homeless and out of work screamed to a sizable crowd that “the Jews control Wall Street,” and told counter-protesters to “go back to Israel,” and called them “greedy pigs,” saying that “this is not Israel.” The same protester also alleged that Jews control the media and blamed “Jewish bankers” for the nation’s economic woes.


And with signs such as this:





























Of course, anti-Semitism is not the main theme of OWS. Most of the protesters seem motivated by nothing more than an inflated sense of entitlement. But the movement’s willingness to tolerate such hate speech, and the willingness of the mainstream media to overlook it, is an ominous sign. It’s also a gross example of plain old hypocrisy, as becomes obvious when one recalls the obsessive zeal with which the media and the Left sought out and trumpeted any evidence, real or imagined, of “racism” at Tea Party rallies.

Posted by tmg110 at 11:14 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, 14 October 2011 11:24 AM EDT
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Off Target
Topic: Liberal Fascism


In this article for NRO, Rich Lowry makes an excellent point about the Occupy Wall Street protestors:


College students and recent graduates are overrepresented. Their complaint comes down to too much debt, and too few job opportunities to get out from under it. There’s the guy with the master’s from Harvard who owes $60,000 and lives off temp jobs. There’s the woman who is paying her own $50,000 in debt plus $20,000 in debt for her 22-year-old daughter. There’s the graduate with a master’s from “a major U.S university” who is unemployed and $92,000 in hock. And on and on.


The representatives of these debt-burdened graduates shouldn’t be at Zuccotti Park, but at the American Association of University Professors or some other arm of the academic complex that gouges students. College tuition has been increasing at a rapid clip. Does anyone believe that higher ed is getting constantly better? It’s an inflationary spiral, partly driven by a federal student-loan program that feeds the maw of the beast regardless of quality or outcomes.


I’ve been making this argument for years. Exactly why is it that the cost of college is so high? Do the princely salaries and benefits of tenured faculty, proliferating campus administrative staffs, costly sports programs and opulent campus buildings justify the price tag of an undergraduate degree? Though I find it difficult to sympathize with someone who borrowed $50,000 to obtain a bachelor of fine arts degree that’s useless in today’s job market, individual gullibility and cluelessness still do not excuse this egregious price gouging. And as Lowry points out, the federal government’s student-loan program underwrites Big Education’s greed.


A college education is still a good investment—the current unemployment rate for college grades is 4.3%, compared with the national rate of 9.1%. The sob stories alluded to by Lowry—you can read them here—should therefore be viewed in perspective. But these people do have a legitimate gripe. The problem is that they’ve selected the wrong villain. “Wall Street” didn’t screw them. Their alma maters did.

Posted by tmg110 at 10:14 AM EDT
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The Most Loathsome Woman in America
Topic: Liberal Fascism


OK, so she has some strong competition for the title (Roseanne Barr comes to mind), but Nancy Pelosi certainly belongs among the Top Ten: Pay for abortion, or women 'die on the floor'


That’s the House Minority Leader reacting to a Republican proposal that would ban the government from paying for abortions via ObamaCare. According to Pelosi this means that Republicans want to see dying women writhing in their own blood on the floor of the emergency room, while doctors and nurses just stand there. Seriously, that’s what she said. And I may be so bold as to appropriate the wicked old shrew’s own words, “It’s just appalling.”

Posted by tmg110 at 9:46 AM EDT
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