The Bookworm Beat 11-24-15 — the “a little help from my friends” edition and open thread

Woman-writing-300x265My day has spiraled so wildly out of control, I despair of ever getting it back. Fortunately, a good friend who knows well how I think sent me an email that says much of what I would have said today if I’d had the time. So, here is the “Bookworm friends” edition:

On the subject of white guilt, let me paraphrase Alan Dershowitz who calls today’s tenured faculty the biggest wusses he’s seen in 50 years.  All of them are unable to respond to the outrageous demands and tactics of perpetual grievance groups, paralyzed by the white guilt.  What Dershowitz doesn’t say is that the victimization these groups are claiming as justification is nothing more or less than the tenured faculty has been trying for decades now to inculcate in them.  I think Mary Shelly wrote a cautionary tale about this . . .

Also, Bret Stephens places blame firmly where it belongs when it comes to those monstrous students — on their Progressive parents and faculty members, who are themselves the spawn of the Greatest Generation who, flush with winning the war and dominating the peace, forgot to parent.

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The Bookworm Beat 11-1-15 — the Daylight Saving Time edition and open thread

Woman-writing-300x265I like to Fall backwards, since it means I rise with the sun, which is a lot easier than getting up in the deep of night. Still, I’ve been discombobulated today, my computer has been balky, and my brain sluggish. Both the computer and I seem to have Daylight Saving jet lag. Jet lag or not, though, I have articles to share:

Should anyone in America ever be too big to jail?

I was absolutely horrified when a McClatchy article suggested that Hillary is just too darn important to prosecute for her myriad, deliberate, and quite damaging national security violations:

But most who spoke to McClatchy say it’s unlikely the former first lady, senator and Cabinet secretary will face charges because of her high profile and the hurdle to prove she knew the emails contained classified information when she sent them to others.

“She’s too big to jail,” said national security attorney Edward MacMahon Jr., who represented former CIA employee Jeffrey Sterling in 2011 in a leak case that led to an espionage prosecution and 3½-year prison term. He cited a pattern of light punishments for top government officials who have mishandled classified information while lower level whistleblowers such as Sterling have faced harsh prosecutions for revealing sensitive information to expose waste, fraud or abuse in government.

Is this what our democracy has come to — the claim that Hillary Clinton, whose public career has been marked by corruption since her debut at Watergate — gets a pass because she’s just too darn elite and special?

Of course, that’s not the only problem with the McClatchy article. As my friend Wolf Howling wrote me,

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The Bookworm Beat 10-28-15 — the speed dial edition and open thread

Woman-writing-300x265My challenge to myself is to give you as many links as possible in the ten minutes I have left before I have to go to the veterinarian with my dog. This will be my fourth doctor’s visit this week, which is quite impressive considering that I am in the pink of health.

The mullahs send Obama a signal

You know the old joke about the man who goes up to a beautiful woman at a swank party and asks, “Would you sleep with me for $1,000,000?”

The woman blushes and coyly whispers back, “I’m so flattered. Why, yes, I think I would.”

The man asks a follow-up question: “Would you sleep with me for $10?”

The woman turns red, slaps the man in the face, and asks angrily, “What do you take me for? A whore?”

Answers the man, “We’ve already established what you are. Now we’re just haggling about the price.”

Keep that joke in mind as you read about Iran, having taken Obama’s measure and gotten all the benefits of the bargain, is making sure to show Obama just what the mullahs think of him and his country.

Antisemitism goes mainstream

If you’re an antisemite, this link showing people all over the world flashing antisemitic signals in the places most likely to disrespect Jews and their memory will delight you. All moral, decent, honorable, kind, and good people will be disgusted.

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The Hillary hearings

Hillary who cares if I'm a liarI wasn’t able to watch the Hillary hearings (and doubt if I could have stomached them in any event), but one of my friends followed them on and off throughout the day, and had this to say:

I was able to stomach bits and pieces of the Hildabeast hearings, but only in a few minute increments.  A few very important points came out of the hearing.  In the year prior to the attack, Amb. Stevens and his crew forwarded to the State Dept. over 600 requests for increased security.  Hillary said she received none and left all security decisions in the hands of “trained professionals.”

That testimony begs several questions:  Who made the decisions.  Who supervised those persons?  What was the basis for not only refusing the requests, but reducing security during the year prior  (the answer, as I have been opining since 2013, has to be politics in an election year combined with criminal negligence)?  And how is it that Hillary did not deem it important enough to inquire about the security of the Libya mission as public reports of rapidly declining security mounted, Britain pulled out its mission, and the Benghazi mission had at least one dry run attack?

None of the Republicans asked those specific questions. Nor did they ask anything about the risk assessment undertaken a month prior to the attack and forwarded by address to Hillary in which the State Dept. personnel on the ground determined that any sizable attack – precisely what happened a month later – would overrun the compound.

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Hillary’s lastest speech on gun control — or, do Leftists even bother to listen to themselves anymore?

Mao and gun bansHillary has been taunting the NRA and its members:

Hillary Clinton is ramping up her rhetoric on guns, comparing the National Rifle Association (NRA) to global adversaries she negotiated with as secretary of State.

“You know, the NRA’s position reminds me of negotiating with the Iranians or the communists,” [Mrs.] Clinton said at an Iowa town hall on Wednesday. . . .

“The NRA tries to keep gun owners—the ones who are members—really upset all the time so they can keep collecting their money, because they tell them they’re the only thing that’s going to stop the black helicopters from landing in the front yard and people’s guns being seized,” Clinton said. “That’s the argument they make. And it works with some people and it has turned a lot of people into absolutists themselves.”

James Taranto makes mincemeat out of the simultaneously risible and invidious comparison between the NRA and the free world’s arch enemies, as well as about Hillary’s much publicized flip-flops on the trade agreement, so I won’t address those points here.

I wanted to address an entirely different point. According to Hillary, the NRA is a disgraceful fear-mongering organization that manipulates its members by telling them things that Hillary implies are false. And what are these falsehoods the NRA tells? “[T]hey [the NRA] tell them [NRA members] they’re the only thing that’s going to stop the black helicopters from landing in the front yard and people’s guns being seized.”

We’ll accept the bit about the black helicopters as acceptable rhetorical hyperbole, akin to puffery in advertising. Everyone listening understands that the “black helicopters” to which she refers are a stand-in for “the government.” And what does the NRA falsely tell people that “the government” is going to do? Well, if you look past Hillary’s passive voice construction, the NRA is telling its members that the government is going to seize their guns. And that, says Hillary, is a lie being used on feeble-minded mouth breathers who are all married to their siblings and have never seen The New York Times.

Funnily enough, though, that’s exactly what President Obama is proposing (and that every registered Democrat on my Facebook feed enthusiastically supports). He’s praised Australia’s approach to gun violence:

“Couple of decades ago, Australia had a mass shooting, similar to Columbine or Newtown. And Australia just said, well, that’s it, we’re not doing, we’re not seeing that again, and basically imposed very severe, tough gun laws, and they haven’t had a mass shooting since,” said the president in a pre-arranged session held to discuss his plans to help cut student debt.

More than that, he’s said he’d like to see Australia’s and England’s gun laws enacted here:

We know that other countries, in response to one mass shooting, have been able to craft laws that almost eliminate mass shootings. Friends of ours, allies of ours — Great Britain, Australia, countries like ours. So we know there are ways to prevent it.

So what did they do in Australia and England that Obama wants to emulate? They grabbed guns. That is, they didn’t just place more stringent regulations on selling guns (almost none of which would have stopped any of the mass shooters who have been appearing with some regularity under Obama’s administration). Instead, they took guns away. In Australia, it was framed as a “buyback,” but owners were forced to sell, so it was really compensation for a government-enforced seizure, and then left it to the government to decide whether any given individual is worthy of a gun:

But the Australian 1996 National Agreement on Firearms was not a benign set of commonsense gun-control rules: It was a gun-confiscation program rushed through the Australian parliament just twelve days after a 28-year-old man killed 35 people with a semi-automatic rifle in the Tasmanian city of Port Arthur. The Council of Foreign relations summarizes the Aussie measure nicely:

The National Agreement on Firearms all but prohibited automatic and semiautomatic assault rifles, stiffened licensing and ownership rules, and instituted a temporary gun buyback program that took some 650,000 assault weapons (about one-sixth of the national stock) out of public circulation. Among other things, the law also required licensees to demonstrate a “genuine need” for a particular type of gun and take a firearm safety course.

England has also made guns verboten. Private gun ownership in England has all but vanished (and the British Left would love to see it vanish entirely).

In other words, Hillary’s childish insults to the contrary, the crazy paranoid NRA and its crazy paranoid members are right: What the Democrat party wants to do is enact Australian and English style laws that have at their heart gun seizures and the denial of future gun ownership.

You can go here and here to find out just how successful those gun grabs have been at reducing gun crime and overall crime in England and Australia.  Hint:  Americans have seen a significantly greater drop in crime as their gun possession has increased, compared to the two other countries, with Australia maintaining the same trajectory as before the gun seizure and with England becoming one of the most violent countries in the West.  Let’s just say it’s not surprising that Muslims are moving on Europe with increasing confidence now that Europe has voluntarily and unilaterally disarmed itself.


The Bookworm Beat 9-13-15 — the “good friend” edition and open thread *UPDATED*

Woman-writing-300x265My weekend got derailed because my mother is ill. She’s in a skilled nursing facility, but likes my company. I also am a fixed reference point when she gets delirious, so I can help re-orient her. Fortunately, my insistently anonymous friend knows what interests me and sent me a wonderful compendium of news stories:

She’s even incompetent at being a crook

Now, this is interesting.  According to Hillary’s tech company that took control of her server in 2013, it has never been wiped.  This story is just getting more bizarre by the minute.  And yet again, one has to wonder about the incredible gymnastics Hildabeast and her attorney have gone through not to answer questions about the server.  What is going on?  Inquiring minds really want to know.

You’d think Hillary and her team would understand the difference between a local hard drive and an off-site server, at least when it comes to deleting content.  Sheesh!

Certainly she has her supporters, though.  The Justice Dept. filed in a FOIA case a brief saying that Hildabeast had a right to unilaterally delete her emails without any review by a third party officer, as required by State Dept. regulations upon her end of service.  It would appear that we are indeed going to get treated to the world’s most blatant double legal standards and that DOJ is going to protect Hildabeast and State.

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The Hildabeast update

Hillary's prison face 2My anonymous friend has checked in with another Hildabeast update:

More Hildabeast in the news. You can’t make this stuff up. It seems likely that Patrick Kennedy at the State Dept. has been running interference on behalf of Hillary for years. He has clearly been doing his best to insure that no more of her emails are subject to review by the IG for the Intelligence Community and likely has had a hand in changing at least four certifications from confidential to privileged as part of the deliberative process, an issue raised by whistle blowers.

Thus I was happy to see that John Kerry had appointed a Czar to oversee the production of Hilldabeast documents. What that announcement didn’t include was the fact that the new Czar maxed out her donations to Hillary for the primary, $2,700, a few weeks ago.

Normally, I think that new administrations should not go after prior administrations for breaking the law. It is too banana republic and we inevitably need to move forward. But not this time. I think the first year of the next administration needs to be spent putting half the Obama administration in jail in order to move us out of banana republic status.

A new lawsuit has been filed against the State Dept. asking an important question, particularly in light of the fact that two of the documents on Hillary’s e-mail server were classified not only Top Secret, but compartmentalized. Just so you know, that means it requires more than merely a Top Secret clearance to view that information. It is on a need to know basis and there are all sorts of safeguards that one must go through to view it.

A new lawsuit is demanding that the State Department explain how Hillary Clinton’s private attorney, David Kendall, got permission from the State Department to retain copies of Clinton’s emails after the agency determined some of them were classified.

The suit was filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Washington by freelance journalist David Brown, who sent State a Freedom of Information Act request last month asking for all records about the decision to allow Kendall to retain a thumb drive containing copies of about 30,000 emails Clinton turned over to State in December.

Kendall said in a letter to Congress recently that on July 8, the State Department provided him and his law partner Katherine Turner with a safe to hold the drive. He said both he and Turner have “TOP SECRET” clearances.

After a request from the FBI to return all copies of the emails, Clinton instructed Kendall to give up the thumb drive, which he did in early August.

Lawyers who represent clients in national security cases say it’s highly unusual for a private attorney to be given permission to hold classified records.

“If one of us tried to do this, we’d have our clearance yanked that very day and have a search warrant served on us and something different happened here,” said Brown’s attorney Kel McClanahan. “Not only agree did [State] allow him to maintain these records, but it’s unclear if they even pushed back. … We decided somebody needs to get to the bottom of what exactly happened here. What is it: favoritism or did David Kendall somehow satisify some requirement that others of us never even knew to aim for?”

Kendall and the Clinton campaign did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the case. . . .

And then there’s this, from Hildabeast’s facebook as of this morning (with my friend’s comments in blue):

I wanted you to hear this directly from me:

Yes, I should have used two email addresses, one for personal matters and one for my work at the State Department. Not doing so was a mistake. I’m sorry about it, and I take full responsibility.

[That is a rather unique use of the term “I take full responsibility.” She will acknowledge what she did but accept no consequences]

It’s important for you to know a few key facts. My use of a personal email account was aboveboard and allowed under the State Department’s rules.

[Is that why she put out an email to all State Dept. personnel in 2011 reminding them that it was against State Dept. policy to conduct State Dept. business on a private email account, or why, in 2012, her IG cited as part of a report leading to an ambassador’s resignation that he was using a private email account? I am not going to get into the weeds here and actually research all of the rules, but someone I am sure has. I will look for it.]

Everyone I communicated with in government was aware of it.

[This troubles me, I am not sure why. But then again, “what difference does it make?” That they allowed Hillary to do this without complaining is certainly not proof that what she did was “above-board,” “authorized” or legal.]

And nothing I ever sent or received was marked classified at the time.

[Is your spidey sense tingling? Oh my. She has learned to prevaricate at the feet of the master. She is implying that she would not recognize classified information unless it was marked, yet she was the classifying authority and the operative EO spells out precisely what information should be classified. And I’m sorry, but no one familiar with our national security could possibly see information based on real time satellite data or commo intercepts and not know this information was Top Secret. Nor could our Sec. of State not realize that she shouldn’t be sending out private emails about ongoing diplomatic negotiations as that would be . . . classified. Oh my.]

As this process proceeds, I want to be as transparent as possible. That’s why I’ve provided all of my work emails to the government to be released to the public,

[I’m not even going to bother.]

and why I’ll be testifying in public in front of the Benghazi Committee later next month.

[well, it would look suspicious if she took the Fifth.]

I know this is a complex story. I could have—and should have—done a better job answering questions earlier.

[What she really means: You aren’t supposed to be paying any attention to this. Stop asking me questions about things too complex for you to understand.]

I’m grateful for your support, and I’m not taking anything for granted.

[What she really means: My coronation is scheduled for 2016. Don’t you dare screw this up.]

I understand that you may have more questions, and I am going to work to keep answering them. If you want to read more, including my emails themselves, please go here:

Thank you,


Oh wow. Ron Fournier has the perfect response to this from Hillary. Fournier was in love with Hillary until this private server surfaced. Now he is offended . . . and apparently Hell hath no fury like a Fournier offended. His response is a series of 19 questions . . . and I am going to go out on a limb here and assume Hillary is not going to be doing an interview with him at any time soon. This is one you should read when you get the chance.

This whole situation is so dirty it’s beyond belief.

The above is all from my friend.  I, Bookworm, will add just one thing:  I asked a Leftie friend of mine “Do you think the email situation will affect Hillary’s presidential candidacy?”  There was a dead silence, followed by a firm “No.”

From my friend’s pause and then that brief answer I inferred one of two things:  (1) Relying primarily on intermittent readings of the MSM, my friend had no idea what “email situation” I was talking about or (2) my friend knows about the email thing but couldn’t care less because it matters only that Hillary get into the White House.  Either answer goes a long way to highlighting the fact that we have an uninformed electorate that is blindly loyal to a political party.

The Bookworm Beat 9-8-15 — the “busy world” edition and open thread

Woman-writing-300x265My apologies for my blog silence yesterday. I hope to make up for it now with a substantial round-up, some of which I compiled, and some of which comes from a friend who insists on remaining anonymous:

Your daily “Hillary is toast” report

As you know, Hillary did a national interview — fairly softball really — with Andrea Mitchell, who has long been a Hillary fan.  Mitchell has now published her post interview take on it all (emphasis added):

MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell said Tuesday she was concerned the Hillary Clinton campaign would have cut off her interview with the candidate if she asked too many questions about Clinton’s private email server at the State Department.

Clinton sat down with Mitchell on Friday and the main topic from the start was her use of a private, unsecured server as secretary of state, which has caused serious problems for her campaign with questions about her honesty, trustworthiness, and handling of classified material. While other presidential candidates have made dozens of media appearances, Clinton has given just threenationally televised interviews since her campaign began.

“We were told we had a 15-minute interview,” Mitchell said. “I asked more than 12 minutes on emails before I felt, out of concern that they would cut it off, obviously, that I had to move on, so I couldn’t ask everything that I did want to ask, but I think we did get a good chance to ask a lot of questions and discover that she did not have an answer for why she did the personal server in the first place.

Even members of the drive-by media are shaking their heads that Hildabeast has not come up with a believable lie for why she ran a personal server.  There is only one obvious reason, but they claim to be mystified.

Meanwhile, Hildabeast spoke at a Labour Day event that included this gem:

“We’re going to go back to enforcing labor laws,” Clinton said. “I’m going to make sure that some employers go to jail for wage theft and all the other abuses that they engage in.”

She has apparently gone full Lenin and business owners are the new Kulaks.  That said, there are two things Hildabeast should not be doing at this point: one is wear an orange jumpsuit, the other is use the word “jail.”

At NRO, Shannen Coffin has a great deal of fun with Hillary’s latest excuse for her private email, private server and numerous email shenanigans, that she simply “wasn’t thinking.”  My but she took a lot of actions unconsciously.

It seems the Hot Air crowd has reached the same conclusion that my friend did as soon as he saw the second review panel’s determination of the top secret information Hillary had on her server.  The argument had been that possibly they were discussing information that had somehow become available through public sources, such as a foreign news report.  That is no longer at issue.  It is now beyond question that Hillary committed multiple crimes and the DOJ cannot ignore it without applying a clear legal double standard:

The FBI and the Department of Justice will have to take some kind of action at this point. A federal grand jury will get them off the hook politically, at least for a short period of time, and that may be their best option under the weight of a presidential campaign.

Oh, one more thing:  Since it’s from the National Enquirer, we know it’s true that Hillary really is a lesbian (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

Donald Trump exaggerates his tough guy capabilities

Donald Trump, who has the same military record as Obama, Hillary, Hildabeast, Bill Clinton, Joe Biden, and Elizabeth Warren, says in an interview “I always felt that I was in the military. . . . Trump said that his five years at the New York Military Academy provided him with “more training militarily than a lot of the guys that go into the military.”

If you want to anger millions of Americans who have actually been in and understand the challenges and sacrifices, eh, couldn’t think of a better way to do it.  Having experienced an extremely tough military training, followed by actual infantry service at the front lines, my anonymous friend can assure you, there is only the tiniest of comparisons between even the toughest military college and the actual infantry — plus there is that tiny bit about not having people shoot at you or engaging in training events that could claim your life.

One can only imagine what the Iraq and Afghanistan vets are feeling.  Oh, and to put this in perspective, Trump got four deferments from the Vietnam Draft.

There’s nothing green about “green energy”:

I’ve been sounding the drumbeat for years — green energy is a resource hog.  In order to get to market, green energy products suck up fossil fuel, coal, food crops, and vast tracks of land — and that doesn’t even touch upon the tax payer dollars green energy gobbles up.

It is unlikely that solar power, wind power, or biofuels will ever compete with traditional energy sources.  Until we are willing to rely on nuclear power or until cold fusion is a reality, we have to figure out how to use existing energy sources in a more clean and efficient way, rather than wasting our time with the other stuff.

Anyway, that’s my story, and at the very least, Professor A J Trewavas, who represents Scientific Alliance Scotland, agrees with me:

Renewables use sun, water, wind; energy sources that won’t run out. Non-renewables come from things like gas, coal and uranium that one day will. But unless electricity and motorised transport are abandoned altogether, all “renewables” need huge areas of land or sea and require raw materials that are drilled, transported, mined, bulldozed and these will run out. Wind turbine towers are constructed from steel manufactured in a blast furnace from mined iron ore and modified coal (coke). Turbine blades are composed of oil-derived resins and glass fibre. The nacelle encloses a magnet containing about one third of a tonne of the rare earth metals, neodymium and dysprosium. Large neodymium magnets also help propel electric cars.

Currently China provides 95 per cent of rare earths; proven reserves of dysprosium will likely run out in 2020. Processing one tonne of ore generates about one tonne of radioactive waste, 12 million litres of waste gas containing dust concentrate, hydrofluoric acid, sulphur dioxide, sulphuric acid and 75 thousand litres of waste water. Baotou, in China, mines and processes much of the rare earth ores. The town abuts a five-mile-wide, toxic, lifeless, radioactive lake of processed wastewater. Local inhabitants have unusually high rates of cancer (particularly in children), osteoporosis, skin and respiratory disease. This unseen environmental destruction may be far off but no less damaging.

Read more here.

You may also enjoy watching Ted Cruz school two greenies who try to play gotcha with him.  They’re somewhat handicapped by the fact that their combined IQs don’t equal his.  It’s also rather scary to watch them stick to message like two cheaply programmed robots.  It’s quite obvious that Cruz’s straightforward, easy-to-understand information does not penetrate their sealed-off brain chambers.

Notes on Islam and the refugee issue

If you have only one article you can read today about Europe’s suicidal approach to the stream of Muslims storming her borders, read David P. Goldman’s “The Price of Europe’s fecklessness“:

In Luis Bunuel’s eponymous 1961 film, the young postulant Viridiana leaves her convent to claim her uncle’s rural estate, and creates a refuge for local beggars. They ransack her house in a bachannalia staged to lampoon the Last Supper, and a couple of them rape her. The classic film should be mandatory viewing for European officials caught up in refugee euphoria. This is going to end very, very badly.

The Europeans, to be sure, are a pack of cynical hypocrites. If they had cared about Syrians, they might have sent a couple of brigades of soldiers to fight ISIS. But not a single European will risk his neck to prevent humanitarian catastrophe. The last time European soldiers got close to real trouble, in Srebrenica in 1995, Dutch peacekeepers stood aside while Bosnian Serbs massacred 8,000 Muslims.

The horror has now piled up on Europe’s doorstep, thanks evidently to the skill of Turkish gangs who have turned the Turkey-to-Balkans smuggling route into a superhighway. Europe said and did nothing while the global refugee count exploded from 40 million in 2010 to 60 million in 2014, according to the UN High Commission on Refugees, but was shocked, shocked to find such people on its doorstep.

Read the rest here.

Meanwhile, although I’m not feeling the love for Hungary lately because its antisemitic elements have been growing strong, credit must go where credit is due: Hungary seems to be the only European nation that’s figured out that taking in massive numbers of Muslims, especially young men of military age, is not a good idea:

One of the few European voices of sanity comes from Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban (here, here) He has identified the issue with clarity, so, therefore and of course, he is being called right-wing, nationalist, and–wait for it–fascist. Orban has written that,

We must acknowledge that the European Union’s misguided immigration policy is responsible for this situation. . . . We shouldn’t forget that the people who are coming here grew up in a different religion and represent a completely different culture. Most are not Christian, but Muslim… That is an important question, because Europe and European culture have Christian roots . . .

Daniel Greenfield, meanwhile, reminds us that the Syrian refugee crisis is not our problem because much of what we’re seeing is an illusion:

The Syrian refugee crisis that the media bleats about is not a crisis. And the Syrian refugees it champions are often neither Syrians nor refugees. Fake Syrian passports are cheaper than an EU politician’s virtue and easier to come by. Just about anyone who speaks enough Arabic to pass the scrutiny of a European bureaucrat can come with his two wives in tow and take a turn on the carousel of their welfare state.

Or on our welfare state which pays Christian and Jewish groups to bring the Muslim terrorists of tomorrow to our towns and cities. And their gratitude will be as short-lived as our budgets.

The head of a UNHCR camp called Syrian refugees “The most difficult refugees I’ve ever seen. In Bulgaria, they complained that there were no jobs. In Sweden, they took off their clothes to protest that it was too cold.

In Italy, Muslim African “refugees” rejected pasta and demanded food from their own countries. But the cruel Europeans who “mistreat” migrants set up a kitchen in Calais with imported spices cooked by a Michelin chefdetermined to give them the stir-fried rabbit and lamb meatballs they’re used to. There are also mobile phone charging stations so the destitute refugees can check on their Facebook accounts.

It had to be done because the refugees in Italy were throwing rocks at police while demanding free wifi.

This is the tawdry sense of entitlement of the Syrian Muslim refugee that the media champions.

I will add only that some Americans do bear moral responsibility for what’s going on, because they elected Obama, and it is his Middle Eastern policies — from his kowtowing to Iran, to backing off from his Syrian red line (in deference to Iran), to failing to support Iran’s Green revolution, to ousting Egypt’s Mubarak, to backing the Muslim Brotherhood, to destroying Qadaffi’s stable Libya — that created the utter chaos that is today’s Middle East.  I think these Americans should do penance, but that penance does not include inviting the Middle East’s murderous chaos into our borders.

There are some other lying liars, the ones who defamed Israel, which is the only stable, true democracy in the Middle East, and created false martyrs out of the murderous Muslims surrounding them, who also need to do everlasting penance for their negative impact on the Middle East.  But first, they need to be educated.  This video might enlighten them about the nature of the “concentration camp” they claim Israel created in Gaza (soundtrack is NSFW; images should be mandatory viewing for everyone in America and Europe):

Name-calling aside, it’s not conservatives who are racists

This PragerU video is almost a year old, but it’s been making the rounds again.  I gather that the combination of the “Black Lives Matter” movement and the usual election-time slanders thrown at conservatives have renewed interest in the topic of alleged conservative racism versus actual Leftist racism. Here’s some intellectual ammunition for you as the Leftist rhetoric heats up:

Money laundering for the Left

A friend of mine points out that much of what the Left does is set up programs that launder tax payer money and then send it to Leftist coffers. Here are a couple of links that support that premise.

First, Labor Day is now yesterday’s news.  Starting today, let’s really do something for the working stiff.  Get rid of public sector unions.

Second, watch Obama’s un-elected administrative bureaucracy grow and grow and grow:

In 2014, 3,291 pages of new laws were passed by Congress – the branch of government with the constitutional authority to…

Posted by United States Senator Mike Lee on Monday, January 26, 2015

(If that FB post/video didn’t load, you can see it here.)

For an infinitesimally small minority, transgenders sure make a lot of noise

As a society, we are currently being asked to turn ourselves inside out for transgenders. Cops need to be trained to identify dead trans bodies in a non-offensive way:

The training comes two months after a Tampa transgender woman’s murder — and law enforcement’s handling of it — captured national attention.

After 25-year-old India Clarke’s body was found in a Tampa park July 21, law enforcement identified her by the name and gender she was born with even though she had identified as female for years. Backlash from across the country followed, surfacing a discussion about how law enforcement handle the identities of transgender people.

Officers can’t rely on anatomy or what is on a person’s driver’s license to identify them and generally they should use pronouns based on a person’s outward appearance — or avoid them if unsure.

You see, even when investigating murder — a particularly fact-based activity — ideology must trump reality.

Also, at a San Francisco school, all bathrooms are now unisex. I especially love the quotation that the school’s principal attributed to one parent:

“There’s no need to make them gender-specific anymore,” he said, adding there has been no pushback from parents. “One parent said, ‘So, you’re just making it like it is at home.’”

I don’t know about you, but my home bathroom doesn’t have stalls around multiple toilets, with the stalls open at both top and bottom for prying eyes. It makes you wonder what’s going on in San Francisco homes.

A friend of mine had the perfect solution: If you’re going to have group toilet facilities, you need to have one facility for those humans with penises and one for those without. End of story.

But I opened this by saying that we’re turning upside down for a very small group. How small? Well, I’m too lazy to research it, but I can tell you that even uber-Leftist Harvard, which must be lusting after trans students in the same way it once lusted after Fauxcahontas (boasting rights, you know), has only 6 students, or one-half of one percent of its entering class, identify as “transgender.”

Keeping those teeny-tiny numbers in mind, it’s one thing for us not to discriminate actively against people who are different (a type of prejudice Muslims feel comfortable engaging in); it’s quite another thing to turn our institutions upside down and inside out for people whose numbers as a proportion of the overall population probably hover around 1%.

The future is nearly here and it’s scary

This is an eye opening article on the capabilities of 3D printers to manufacture not merely guns, but eventually WMD.  It will mean that anyone having a bad day and access to a 3D printer, likely to become ubiquitous over the decades, will also potentially be able to kill a lot of people on that day.  I suspect the article it is a bit over-done as to the nuclear, since it would require many specialized materials not likely to be available on the open market, but perhaps not as to the bio and chemical.  And the DNA sequence for small pox is in fact openly available on the web.

Just so you understand what’s really going on with our immigrants

The illegal immigration movement in America and La Raza are not about making sure legal immigrants get equal treatment under the law, which would be a reasonable thing to do. There’s a different agenda at play.

When politics still involved intelligence and class

Nowadays, the premier Democrat candidate (that would be Hillary) is corrupt and clueless, and just wishes the American public weren’t so stupid. Meanwhile, the Republicans have arrayed themselves in their usual circular firing squad, using up all their ammunition on each other rather than challenging Leftist in politics, media, and society.

Once upon a time, though, pundits on both sides had a bit more to say — even though, already then, Alinsky tactics were the Left’s favorite approach to destroying the opposition. Never argue issues; always destroy people.

Incidentally, if you’d like guidance on standing against the Left’s Social Justice Warriors and their Alinsky tactics of personal destruction, check out Vox Day’s SJWs Always Lie: Taking Down the Thought Police. Except for the fact that it’s absolutely horrifying to read about Social Justice Warriors, it’s a great book, and one that every conservative should read. After all, none of us know when we won’t be the SJW’s next target.

And some fun stuff that’s NOT POLITICS

On the lighter side of the news . . .  a massive great white shark catching its lunch has Aussie tv presenters swear off swimming in the ocean:

The Bookworm Beat 9-1-15 — the “doggone it days of summer” edition and open thread *UPDATED*

Woman-writing-300x265There’s no rain in sight for the next fifteen days, but with August at an end and September beginning, this still feels like the last of the summer to me. Even as summer ends, though, the crazy goes on, and I’ve got the links to prove it (and many thanks to a friend who wishes to remain anonymous for his help assembling some of these links):

Not that the Left will listen to Dick Cheney

Dick Cheney is weighing in on the Iran “Deal,” saying the obvious, that it makes war more, not less, likely.  Unstated is the 1930’s lesson, that the costs of waiting for war until Iran is far better armed and has nuclear weapons will make the cost in blood and gold rise exponentially.

Hillary reduced to name calling and insults

James Taranto’s BOTW today is a great one analyzing Hildabeast’s decision to begin making outlandish accusations and allusions to terrorists and Nazis.  She is flailing:

“Terrorist groups” and “boxcars” do not appear to be mere gaffes. If you watch the videos of Mrs. Clinton’s comments, you will note that both inflammatory utterances are preceded by pregnant pauses, suggesting that she chose the words deliberately—that her intent was to inflame. Why?


Is the ugly rhetoric really necessary? Maybe so. In an interview with the Register, Democratic strategist Steve McMahon offers this explanation for the Sanders surge: “Voters right now are flocking to the angry, authentic outsiders and moving away from the cautious or calculating establishment insiders.” (One might add that also describes Trump and the Republicans.) Mrs. Clinton is no outsider and will never be described as authentic, so she has to try extra hard to appeal to anger.

And it’s nothing new for her. When Bill Clinton was president, Mrs. Clinton played Agnew to his Nixon. She, not he, blamed his sex scandals on a “vast right-wing conspiracy.” Until last week, her campaign rhetoric had been decidedly bland, and it’s hardly surprising she’d feel the need to spice it up. But as Jonathan Haidt observes in “The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion”: “You can’t have a cuisine . . . based primarily on bitter tastes.”

Higher education continues to sink ever lower

This from Elizabeth Foley at Instapundit on the latest from a college that needs to be burned to the ground and the earth salted:

[Read more…]

The Bookworm Beat 8-28-15 — the “I vant to be alone” edition and open thread

Woman-writing-300x265Sorry for the silence yesterday. The day started with my daughter’s migraine, which is something that needs to be taken seriously because, on a scale of 1 to 10, which 1 being a nothing of a headache and 10 being a bad migraine, hers come in at 25 and need a trip to the ER if we’re not vigilant.

We were vigilant, so I thought I’d successfully avoided the ER — that is, I thought that until I got a call from my Mom’s skilled nursing facility telling me that she’d taken a fall and was being loaded into the ambulance.  Lots of blood outside of her head and a very little bit of blood inside of her head, so she got checked into the hospital so that they could keep an eye on her.  I got to bed by 3 and was up again a little after 6 to get the kids off to school.  I’m tired and grumpy.

Meanwhile, in between those to minor head cases (pun intended), it was just the usual “everybody wants you” kind of day, which is the same that can be said for this morning.  I’ve got the two videos that sum up my feeling about life now:

Yeah! What Garbo said….

Still, aside from feeling sorry for myself this tired morning, I do have a few things to share.  First, a friend sent me an email with some links, so I’ll share it with you as written (with his permission, of course):

A smart friend on academic fraud, microaggressions, and Clinton apologists

From the NYT:  Many Psychology Findings Not As Strong As Claimed, Study Says.  Actually, the article is far more damning than the headline would lead you to believe.  An attempt to duplicate 100 experiments whose finding were deemed to be at the core of current psychological teachings and beliefs failed catastrophically.  The results of over half the experiments could not be duplicated.

The story of the Roanoke murder gets even more troubling.  Apparently, it was all microaggressions that set him off.  This article tells how he interpreted everything done by white employees as racist.  This guy is a poster child for what blacks are being fed today by the Left.  Want to bet that is why ABC, which has had Vester Flanigan’s manifesto now for two days, has not released it?

David Ignatius has a column out this morning on The Clinton Scandal That Isn’t.  It looks to be laying the groundwork for the next version of Hildabeast’s defense.  Yes, he says, she sent some classified materials over an unsecure e-mail system, but the reality is that the secure system is so ponderous and time consuming everyone does it.  He baldly asserts along the way that other prosecutions for mishandling classified information do not fit Clinton’s fact pattern.

I love the way he describes the Petraeus prosecution:  “Petraeus pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor last April for ‘knowingly’ removing classified documents from authorized locations and retaining them at ‘unauthorized locations.'”  How that differs from Hillary maintaining a private server to retain classified documents, apparently in an unauthorized bathroom in Colorado, neither Ignatius nor any of his mostly anonymous sources explain.

I could spend the day listing all the untruths and half truths in this one page article.  Most of them can be dealt with simply by noting that Ignatius raises one distinction without a difference after another, and that if his version of the acceptable handling of classified documents were ever to take root, we would not have a national secret left.

Beyond that, he also carefully limits his inquiry.  His thesis is that this will only be a “scandal” if Hillary is charged with mishandling classified information.  He does not address Hillary’s decision — one that violates policy — to unilaterally wipe her server.  He ignores the obvious conclusions that can be drawn from the stonewalling of responses to subpoenas and FOIA lawsuits.

And the more I think about this, the more I think Hillary has one question that she absolutely does not want to answer under oath.  On what day did she order her server wiped?  I have never seen so many legal and linguistic gymnastics given over to avoiding answering any question.  I wonder if it happened in March 2015, right about the time the subpoena was issued.

Bookworm here:  I’d just like to add that, if Hillary’s “it was too cumbersome” defense works, I find paying taxes, stopping at red lights, not littering, parking at meters (and paying those meters) cumbersome too.  Since America is all about equality, I feel I should be cut precisely the same slack her defenders are cutting for Hillary.

Just so you know how truly awful Margaret Sanger was

As a product of San Francisco public schools, I was raised to revere Margaret Sanger’s selfless efforts to help poor people. What I wasn’t taught was that her efforts at birth control for poor people were done in the service of the same impulse that led Hitler to send Jews, Gypsies, gays, and mentally and physically disabled people to the death camps: the desire to rid the white world of defective races and individuals. Here’s a nice Sanger quotation:

Sanger on the mercies of genocide

“We should hire three or four colored ministers, preferably with social-service backgrounds, and with engaging personalities. The most successful educational approach to the Negro is through a religious appeal. We don’t want the word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population. And the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members.

Steve Crowder has much more.

This is separate from abortion.  This goes to the Left’s habit of getting us, as a society, swearing fealty to truly evil people.

Thomas Friedman’s seminal lies

I’ve long since given over attacking Thomas Friedman.  He’s too easy a target with his adoration for Saudi Arabia’s tyrannical, antisemitic governing style (although, ironically, Obama’s love for Iran is pushing Saudi Arabia and Israel together), his passion for Chinese totalitarianism, and his frequently recycled columns, complete with straw man arguments.  Nevertheless, it’s worth knowing that his awfulness goes right to his core, because his whole career as a seemingly objective Middle Eastern observer is a lie.

The carbon offsets scam

Will it surprise you to learn that the only thing the whole carbon offsets scheme did was to encourage dishonest nations (of which there are many) to increase their carbon output?  No?  Well, it didn’t surprise me either.  My Leftist friends, incidentally, offered this response when I posted on Facebook the article about the scam:  *crickets*

And Hamas operatives are liars and scammers

I’ve got to run, but I’ll leave you with a link to how Hamas operates, creating propaganda videos for the benefit of credulous idiots and/or malevolent enemies of Israel.

Fun with fools — another “Found it on Facebook” edition, with help from my Progressive friends

I had so much fun the last time I deconstructed the analytically and factually foolish posters I found on the Facebook pages of my many, many Leftist friends, that I thought I’d do it again.  As before, my commentary is below each poster:

Jimmy Carter Humility Grace Courage

I’ll Yid with Lid the floor on this one.  He describes how he tried to feel true compassion for Carter when the former President announced his cancer.  Unfortunately, Carter sank to his usual depths:

I pretty much decided I would keep silent. Especially when he started his press conference on Friday revealing that the horrible disease had spread to his brain. Well—that was until a reporter asked him what he would like to see happen before he died, and when he answered the former president slandered the Jewish State (see video below):

In international affairs I would say peace for Israel and its neighbors. That has been a top priority for my foreign policy projects for the last 30 years. Right now I think the prospects of are more dismal than anytime I remember in the last 50 years. Practically, whole process is practically dormant. The government of Israel has no desire for two-state solution, which is policy of all the other nations in the world. And the United States has practically no influence compared to past years in either Israel or Palestine. So I feel very discouraged about it but that would be my number one foreign policy hope.

Perhaps it’s all the Times he met with Hamas, ignoring their terrorism and declaring they want peace that has clouded Mr. Carter’s memory.  But the Author of a book with a title calling the Jewish State an apartheid nation forgets history.  The truth is that the last Israeli Premier who did not support a two state solution was Yitchak Rabin. Every prime minister since Peres, Netanyahu, Sharon, Barak, Olmert, every single one of them declared their goal was a two state solution. Heck under Barack and Olmert, the Palestinians were offered deals which gave them 98% of what they wanted and each time they said no.  On the other hand even years after Rabin shook the hands of the terrorist Arafat the Palestinians refuse to recognize the sovereign Jewish State of Israel.

So why would Jimmy Carter take the time to slander the Jewish State at the same time he was announcing the graveness of his illness.  That’s easy, Carter hates Jews.  (Emphasis in original.)

Read more about the utterly despicable Carter here.  I don’t hope for him an agonizing death or anything like that.  But honestly compels me to say that I will be delighted when he is no longer around to slander the only liberal democracy in the Middle East.

The fact is that antisemitism is a pretty damn good test of a person’s moral decency — antisemites have none, and Carter is not an honorable, decent man.  He is, instead, a national embarrassment who didn’t have the decency to retire following his utterly ignominious presidency, one plagued by failure, both at home and abroad.  The only thing that saves him from being the worst president ever is Obama’s presidency.  Carter managed to survive long enough to be succeeded by a man even more of an antisemite and failure than Carter himself.  What a sad record for American politics.

The other people did it too defense to Hillary's wrongdoing

I love the moral equivalency here:  Bush and Cheney’s campaign deleted lots of emails, so Hillary didn’t do anything that wrong!

In fact, the RNC did delete a whole bunch of emails in 2007, and they did so in violation of the Hatch act, but the equivalency ends there.  The Bush emails were purely political in nature (hyperlinks and footnotes omitted):

The Bush White House email controversy surfaced in 2007 during the controversy involving the dismissal of eight U.S. attorneys. Congressional requests for administration documents while investigating the dismissals of the U.S. attorneys required the Bush administration to reveal that not all internal White House emails were available, because they were sent via a non-government domain hosted on an email server not controlled by the federal government. Conducting governmental business in this manner is a possible violation of the Presidential Records Act of 1978, and the Hatch Act.[1] Over 5 million emails may have been lost or deleted.[2][3] Greg Palast claims to have come up with 500 of the Karl Rove lost emails, leading to damaging allegations.[4] In 2009, it was announced that as many as 22 million emails may have been deleted.[5]

The administration officials had been using a private Internet domain, called, owned by and hosted on an email server run by the Republican National Committee,[6] for various communications of unknown content or purpose. The domain name is an acronym standing for “George W. Bush, 43rd” President of the United States. The server came public when it was discovered that J. Scott Jennings, the White House’s deputy director of political affairs, was using a email address to discuss the firing of the U.S. attorney for Arkansas.[7] Communications by federal employees were also found on (registered to “Bush-Cheney ’04, Inc.”[8]) and (registered to “Republican National Committee”[9]), but, unlike these two servers, has no Web server connected to it — it is used only for email.[10]

The “” domain name was publicized by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), who sent a letter to Oversight and Government Reform Committee committee chairman Henry A. Waxman requesting an investigation.[11] Waxman sent a formal warning to the RNC, advising them to retain copies of all emails sent by White House employees. According to Waxman, “in some instances, White House officials were using nongovernmental accounts specifically to avoid creating a record of the communications.”[12] The Republican National Committee claims to have erased the emails, supposedly making them unavailable for Congressional investigators.[13]

On April 12, 2007, White House spokesman Scott Stanzel stated that White House staffers were told to use RNC accounts to “err on the side of avoiding violations of the Hatch Act, but they should also retain that information so it can be reviewed for the Presidential Records Act,” and that “some employees … have communicated about official business on those political email accounts.”[14] Stanzel also said that even though RNC policy since 2004 has been to retain all emails of White House staff with RNC accounts, the staffers had the ability to delete the email themselves.

I am not defending the fact that the Bush White House tried to avoid creating records.  It’s sleazy and the kind of thing one would expect from political operatives.  But come on, Progressive folks!  There is no indication whatsoever that what the White House did exposed America’s highest national security secrets to any Hacker who came along.  Nor is there any evidence that the Bush White House spoliated documents — which is what seems to have happened with Hillary and the State Department, which deliberate destroyed Benghazi records after Congress had called for their production.

Also, by 2007, when the Bush matter emerged, he was in the lame duck phase of his presidency.  There just wasn’t that much political hay to be made of it, so it vanished.  This time, however, we have a perennial presidential candidate who has been in the limelight for more than twenty-years and who, in that time, is consistently caught engaged in underhanded behavior.  Even if the behavior were morally equivalent (which I do not believe), the political implications are going to be different when the issues arise before a candidacy or at the end of an era.

But again, let me say the really important words that make what Hillary did so heinous:  NATIONAL SECURITY and SPOLIATION.  Bad Hillary!  Bad girl!

Curious antrhopogenic attack on Christianity

I adore my dog and my dog, being part chihuahua, adores me with reciprocal ferocity.  I would never confuse myself though into believing that my dog is a moral creature.  Perhaps I’m disgustingly anthropocentric, but I believe morality reflects conscious decisions, not instinct.  That a cat would rescue her kittens is a wonderful instinctive act completely consistent with Nature’s imperative for the continuation of a species.  But that cat did not sit there thinking about the value of her life, versus her kittens’ lives.  She just did what she needed.

Years ago, when my son was very little and announced that lions were bad because they hunted down zebras and gazelles, I said they weren’t.  “Bad” and “good” imply an ability to make choices about good and bad.  When a lion kills, it does so because it is programmed to do so.  Moral analysis is not involved.  My son, bless his heart, understood.  I sure wish the rabid anti-Christians out there had the intelligence of a bright three-year old.

Bernie on private prisons

I have one question:  Why is it obscene?  I understand that we want our judicial system to be from the government, because only the collective will and values of the people should be brought to bear in a criminal case — especially since the government, unlike a private corporation, is theoretically constrained by the Constitution when it comes to criminal process, up to and including sentencing.  But considering government’s gross inefficiencies, it would seem to me that (in theory at least) prisoners could fare just as well in a privately run jail, subject to government oversight and competing market forces, as they could in a government-run jail that answers only to itself, no matter how disgracefully managed it is.

What am I missing?

Warren Buffet against trickle down

There three things I find funny here.  First, Buffet imputes his selfishness to all, as well as confusing charity (which is an altruistic act) with investment (which is a theoretically selfish act that nevertheless yields benefit by pumping money and innovation into the market).  Second, Buffet, all historic evidence to the contrary, thinks that government will do a better job of creating wealth than private capitalism.  And third, Buffet hangs on to his money with a vengeance.  I think I’ll be waiting a long time if I expect Buffet to turn his fortune over to the government for the benefit of the people.

Chris Rock on racists and racism

Anyone see the logical fallacy here?  Rock doesn’t define the racists.  Ordinary people, the one’s who haven’t been brainwashed by our university systems, understand that racism, rather than being endemic in American culture, is almost nonexistent.  Our laws are color-blind and the American people will rarely be caught in acts of overt racism — unless you go trolling through the internet’s underbelly for the few KKK wackos, who lack political power or popular support.

In the absence of real racism, the racial justice hustlers are left with “microagressions” that any sentient being understands are faked in order to browbeat and blackmail (hah! racist pun!) ordinary people.  So, no, we don’t have to stop being “racist.”  We have to stop the race hustlers from lying about what and who we are so that ordinary Americans of all colors can get down to the business of living their lives without government intervention and hustler shakedowns.

As I discuss at greater length below, the problem with American blacks is almost certainly not too little government, but way, way too much. (I’ve also expanded on this thought in a number of prior posts, such as this one.)

African American males end up in jail

Bernie’s good at point out problems.  He’s right that it’s a disgrace that so many blacks end up in jail.  Of course, his solution is “Thank you, government. May I have another dose of toxic condescension” disguised as genuine welfare.  There’s a huge difference between a decent society’s obligation to care for its “widows and orphans” and a racist society’s efforts to keep blacks in perpetual servitude by convincing them that they are incapable of standing and accomplishing things on their own.”  Lyndon B. Johnson sure understood how welfare works, and it’s not for the black’s well-being that’s for sure:

Johnson on welfare and blacks

Keeping people dependent on the government never lets them develop beyond the infant stage. Depriving them of the right to bear arms keeps them at the mercy of criminals. And constantly telling them that, without the government, they are helpless victims would, if the government were a parent and the blacks a child, be parental abuse that everyone would recognize and decry.

American as a Christian nation

As always, you give the Left a little knowledge and it runs riot in ignorance.  While the Founders were adamant that the Federal government not replicate the British government by having a state religion and controlling how citizens worship, the Founders — including the merely “deist/theist” Jefferson — strongly believed that the nation could thrive only on a foundation of Judeo-Christian morality:

“I am a real Christian – that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus Christ.” — Thomas Jefferson

“While we are zealously performing the duties of good citizens and soldiers, we certainly ought not to be inattentive to the higher duties of religion. To the distinguished character of Patriot, it should be our highest glory to add the more distinguished character of Christian.” — George Washington

“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” — John Adams

Unsurprisingly, James Madison, the Father of the Constitution, expressed most clearly the Founders’ belief (no matter their personal relationship to God) that, while the federal government could not be a religious institution, only a Godly people could handle the freedom their new nation gave them (emphasis mine):

Because we hold it for a fundamental and undeniable truth, “that religion or the duty which we owe to our Creator and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence.” The Religion then of every man must be left to the conviction and conscience of every man; and it is the right of every man to exercise it as these may dictate. This right is in its nature an unalienable right. It is unalienable, because the opinions of men, depending only on the evidence contemplated by their own minds cannot follow the dictates of other men: It is unalienable also, because what is here a right towards men, is a duty towards the Creator. It is the duty of every man to render to the Creator such homage and such only as he believes to be acceptable to him. This duty is precedent, both in order of time and in degree of obligation, to the claims of Civil Society. Before any man can be considered as a member of Civil Society, he must be considered as a subject of the Governour of the Universe: And if a member of Civil Society, do it with a saving of his allegiance to the Universal Sovereign. We maintain therefore that in matters of Religion, no man’s right is abridged by the institution of Civil Society and that Religion is wholly exempt from its cognizance. True it is, that no other rule exists, by which any question which may divide a Society, can be ultimately determined, but the will of the majority; but it is also true that the majority may trespass on the rights of the minority.

Oh, and about that quotation attributed to Adams with regarding to the U.S. not being a Christian nation, the giveaway is that it was a part of the Treaty of Tripoli.  Anyone halfway conversant with that treaty (i.e., no Progressives) knows that this was a treaty signed with the Muslim pirates that the Marines defeated the “shores of Tripoli.”  The language was not a disavowal of Christianity but, instead, a reminder that America allowed all people to practice their religion freely, without state intervention (hyperlinks and footnotes omitted):

Article 11 reads:

Art. 11. As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen [Muslims]; and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan [Muslim] nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.

According to Frank Lambert, Professor of History at Purdue University, the assurances in Article 11 were “intended to allay the fears of the Muslim state by insisting that religion would not govern how the treaty was interpreted and enforced. John Adams and the Senate made clear that the pact was between two sovereign states, not between two religious powers.” Lambert writes,

“By their actions, the Founding Fathers made clear that their primary concern was religious freedom, not the advancement of a state religion. Individuals, not the government, would define religious faith and practice in the United States. Thus the Founders ensured that in no official sense would America be a Christian Republic. Ten years after the Constitutional Convention ended its work, the country assured the world that the United States was a secular state, and that its negotiations would adhere to the rule of law, not the dictates of the Christian faith. The assurances were contained in the Treaty of Tripoli of 1797 and were intended to allay the fears of the Muslim state by insisting that religion would not govern how the treaty was interpreted and enforced. John Adams and the Senate made clear that the pact was between two sovereign states, not between two religious powers.”[15]

The treaty was printed in the Philadelphia Gazette and two New York papers, with only scant public dissent, most notably from William Cobbett.[16]

Michelle Bachmann great wall of China

I see this everywhere, and it’s a complete canard, one that could be advanced only by people who don’t know that Michele Bachmann has an LL.M. from William and Mary University.  I was going to add, as a prop to W&M, that it was Thomas Jefferson’s alma mater, but now that he’s been intellectually discredited on account of his owning slaves when doing so was still the norm, I guess that doesn’t help Bachmann.  But back to that stupid quotation:

Several readers asked us to look into whether Bachmann actually made the comments. We obliged and found no evidence backing the claim. We also reached out to Bachmann’s spokesperson, who said the former member of Congress never made the remarks.


We also searched three comprehensive databases — Nexis and CQ, which aggregate transcripts, and Critical Mention, which records video and closed captioning — and found no record of Bachmann ever making those comments.

To our knowledge, she hasn’t appeared on Fox News since Trump announced his candidacy. She has commented on and praised Trump in several interviews on different networks, though she has never mentioned his wall proposal.


We found no evidence that Bachmann ever said this, and her spokeswoman said she did not, in fact, say it. The meme seems to have satirical origins but is now being passed off as fact. We rate the statement Pants on Fire!

Bernie Sanders on Hitler's winHere’s the really interesting thing about Hitler’s win:  He never got more than 30% of the popular vote.  What Bernie doesn’t get is that the real problem with Hitler was his fascism — which is a form of socialism that, rather than nationalizing industry, merely co-opts it.  (I call this crony fascism, and it’s precisely what the Democrats under Obama have been doing for the last seven years.) The reality is that, once a leader and his party gain total control over all facets of government and the economy — which is precisely what Bernie wants to do — you have a recipe for tyranny and war.

Every time I find these posters, and then track down the facts or expose the logical fallacies, I am reminded again that, while I like my Progressive friends because they are, in day-to-day life kind and enjoyable people, when it comes to politics they are monomaniacs, and are precisely as crazy as the nice old lady down the street who lives an exemplary life and then, when she dies, is discovered to have believed that her home was Martian headquarters and that, in order to continue to placate them, her home must be left to her cars, whom the Martians worship.

Monomaniacs can be great people so long as you don’t find yourself dealing with their particular brand of insanity.


Hillary and the five stages of grief — an update from my astute friend Scott

Hillary's prison face 2(Scott continues to track the continuing Hillary saga)

The five stages of grief are

1) Denial
2) Anger
3) Bargaining
4) Depression
5) Acceptance

It is normal for a human being to go through the five stages of grief, and indeed, to jump back and forth between them as they progress to the fifth stage. So it is for Hillary. She has now gone through the first three stages at least, and, given the latest from her campaign, is likely near stage four. Here are her defenses to date:

1. Denial: There was no classified material.

2. Anger: This is just a partisan witch hunt.

3. Bargaining: Technically I didn’t violate the law. Nothing was marked classified.

4. Depression: The law is stupid. Everything was over classified.

According to her campaign, Hillary now intends to claim that everything is regularly over classified, and thus it is unfair to apply the same standards to her that apply to everyone else who handles classified information. Her campaign tweeted out a link to the Toobin article I addressed here. This from her campaign, via Hot Air:

To get in front of these headlines, the Clinton campaign is plotting a three-pronged pushback strategy. The first, described by Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri in an interview with The Huffington Post, is an end-of-summer effort to educate the public on the classification process for national security material. The second, coming when Congress returns from recess, is to aggressively pivot to policy announcements, from economic and women’s issues to President Barack Obama’s Iran deal, which will receive a vote in September. The last is to “go on offense” on Clinton’s record as Secretary of State, which the campaign sees as the ultimate target of her Republican critics

Unfortunately for Hillary, the over classified argument as well as the “not marked classified” arguments are, by any rational standard, foreclosed to her. This from Reuters:

The new stamps indicate that some of Clinton’s emails from her time as the nation’s most senior diplomat are filled with a type of information the U.S. government and the department’s own regulations automatically deems classified from the get-go — regardless of whether it is already marked that way or not.

In the small fraction of emails made public so far, Reuters has found at least 30 email threads from 2009, representing scores of individual emails, that include what the State Department’s own “Classified” stamps now identify as so-called ‘foreign government information.’ The U.S. government defines this as any information, written or spoken, provided in confidence to U.S. officials by their foreign counterparts.

This sort of information, which the department says Clinton both sent and received in her emails, is the only kind that must be “presumed” classified, in part to protect national security and the integrity of diplomatic interactions, according to U.S. regulations examined by Reuters.

“It’s born classified,” said J. William Leonard, a former director of the U.S. government’s Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO). Leonard was director of ISOO, part of the White House’s National Archives and Records Administration, from 2002 until 2008, and worked for both the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations. . . .

That being the case, Hillary’s last line of defense can only be, as her supporters in the USA Today argue, that she was too stupid to recognize classified information. Good luck selling that one to the voting public or a jury.

If everything stops now, there is no way Hillary survives this politically. Less than one person in three considers her trustworthy even now. After six months of super-pac ads pointing out how she is guilty and that she is getting the benefit of a double standard no one else would get, no one who is not a committed prog. will vote for her. Moreover, the only way she survives this criminally is if the Obama administration orders the DOJ to stop its investigation. With the Reuters report, Hillary could be charged today with numerous separate violations of 18 USC 793 and 1924.

And still to be answered:

1. Did she, intentionally or through gross negligence, allow anyone else to have access to these e-mails who did not have an adequate security clearance.

2. What other classified information exists in the 30,460 emails she provided to the State Dept?

3. Are the emails she destroyed recoverable or still available on back-up? If so, can any be considered legitimate Government Records? Do they contain classified information? Are any responsive to the subpoenas provided to the State Dept. in 2013 and her attorney in March 2015?

4. Is there any evidence that her server or e-mail was successfully hacked and, if so, by who?

The answers to none of those questions will exonerate her. They can only make her situation far worse, adding more separate violations of the laws governing the handling of classified information as well as potential counts of obstruction of justice and destruction of government records. That ought to be enough to put her away for life plus another century or so.

That said, if Democrats can rally around Ted Kennedy, ignore the butchery of Planned Parenthood, and elect Marion Barry and Buddy Cianci after their prison stints, then Hillary and the progressives can take heart. There is nothing in the Constitution to prevent her from taking office while in prison. Keep hope alive, my prog friends, keep hope alive.