I have a dream Presidential ticket for 2016. What’s yours?

Presidential SealCPAC brought to the front the ideological war Ted Cruz, a committed Tea Party conservative, and Rand Paul, a libertarian conservative, are waging against each other. I think both have many virtues and serve the constitution very well in Congress. Indeed, I thought Ted Cruz did a good thing when he took his stand against Obamacare last fall. Nevertheless, I don’t want either one as a presidential candidate. Both are provocateurs and, while that’s important for getting messages across and rallying the troops, being a provocateur is not the same as being a leader.

So, what is my current dream ticket for the 2016 Presidential election? Scott Walker for President and Allen West for Vice President.

Scott Walker’s travails and triumphs in Wisconsin told us a great deal about the man: He’s a principled conservative; he can stand the heat without getting ruffled; he’s stalwart; and he’s an extremely good manager, especially economically. In other words, absent such further evidence as may develop in the next two years, he’s perfect chief executive material. Moreover, to date, the worst that the media has been able to discover about him is that, in college, he started campaigning for student office one day early. I think the American people will forgive that.

As for Allen West, there are two reasons I like him. First, I just do. It’s the same way I like Keanu Reeves. It happens at a visceral level that I can’t articulate. But the other reason I like West is because he’s got what it takes to be a Veep preparing to be a president:  He’s a principled conservative; he’s a fiery fighter; he’s stalwart; and he understands command. If he’d also had a successful term as a governor, I’d readily put him on the top of the ticket. We’ve learned the hard way, though, that being president is not a good place for on-the-job training in political management.

So, here’s my dream ticket, based on information available today (subject to change as new information becomes available):

Walker West 2016 Dream Ticket

Please chime in with encouragement, derision, new facts, and alternative suggestions.

Friday morning thoughts (and Open Thread)

The other day, Victorian posy of pansiesI wasn’t able to get to my desktop computer, which is where I write with ease and fluidity.  I was also was quite depressed that day.  Thinking about it, I told my sister that I wasn’t depressed because life is temporarily inconvenient.  I was depressed, instead, because I didn’t get my “writer’s high.”  For many years, I’ve kept myself buoyant through two endorphin-releasing activities:  martial arts and writing.  For the past six months, I’ve been unable to do martial arts, but I still had my writing.  When writing is also denied me, my endorphins vanish, and I get into a funk.  Just an hour at the computer is equal to several bowls of chocolate ice cream — without the calories.

And now to a variety of quick links that have come my way:

An artist in South Florida deliberately destroyed a 7,000 year old Chinese vase to protest the fact that the arts community in Miami isn’t paying enough attention to local artists.  If you’re like me, your first thought upon reading that story was “That man is just crazy.”  Well, if he’s crazy, so is Prince William.  Little Willy has announced that he wants to destroy the monarchy’s priceless 1,200 piece ivory collection to protest the illegal ivory trade.  He’s apparently unimpressed by the fact that these ivories span the centuries, meaning that they come from times long-predating modern environmentalism.  The combination of an appropriately Progressive education and a credulous, rather stupid father clearly has had its effect on the Prince’s reasoning skills and values.

One of my friends, upon hearing about Prince William’s proposal, had the perfect response:  “Perhaps he should also dismantle the monarchy since it has caused so many wars, slavery, and other human suffering. While he’s at it, why not return all the Egyptian treasures spread throughout London the monarchy looted?”

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Mark Steyn is representing himself in the case that Michael Mann — creator of the completely discredited hockey stick graph — has brought against him and against the National ReviewOne can argue that Steyn will find that there’s truth to the saying that “the man who represents himself has a fool for a lawyer.”  I’m not so sure.  In my experience, judges give an enormous amount of leeway to parties who appear on their own behalf.  The smart man representing himself may well be in a better position than the smart man trapped behind a mediocre attorney whose only virtue is that he’s affordable.

If Steyn’s answer and counter-claim is anything to go by, Steyn’s doing just fine.  He understands that the law is on his side.  This is a pure First Amendment case and doesn’t require complex legal analysis.  The only way to win is to make the facts come alive and to reveal Michael Mann for what he is:  a discredited scientist who has used shoddy research and false reports to make himself famous, and who now tries to cling to his dishonestly-won fame by bullying people through the legal system.

Not only does Steyn understand the necessary strategy, he’s taken advantage of his pro per status to write one of the most delightful pleadings I’ve ever seen.  My first drafts usually have the same puckish quality (although I lack Steyn’s wit, erudition, flair, and musicality), but I always take those bits out for fear the judge will think I’m making sport of him.  Steyn, however, is clearly, and deftly, making sport of Mann:

69. Denies the allegations in Paragraph Sixty-Nine of the Amended Complaint, and thinks we’re going round in circles here.

[snip]

111. Denies the allegations in Paragraph One-Hundred-And-Eleven of the Amended Complaint, and feels Plaintiff is going round like a circle in a spiral, like a wheel within a
wheel, like the circles that you find in the tree-rings of your mind.

[snip]

129. Plaintiff Michael Mann is a widely known figure in the scientific and public policy spheres of global warming research who has thrust himself into the politics of the
global warming debate by appearing in TV commercials for political candidates, writing newspaper columns regularly for The Guardian, The New York Times and others, serving as scientific advisor to and appearing in a climate-change TV series starring climate experts Matt Damon and Jessica Alba, and is therefore a public figure. In March 2012, Plaintiff published a book called The Hockey Stick And The Climate Wars: Dispatches From The Front Lines, the “front lines” presumably referring to his media appearances with Miss Alba et al.

[snip]

131. At the other end of the spectrum, Plaintiff and his counsel have issued demands that have no basis in law, as they well know – including the preposterous assertion, in response to a parody video by “Minnesotans for Global Warming”, that “Professor Mann’s likeness” is protected from parody and satire. (See attached letter from Plaintiff’s counsel.) Plaintiff has engaged in serial misrepresentation and false claims to authority, including (in his original Complaint against Defendant Steyn) purporting to be a Nobel Laureate and (in his current Complaint and elsewhere) purporting to have been exonerated by multiple investigations and by fellow scientists who have, in fact, pronounced Mann and his work “inappropriate”, “exaggerated”, “non-robust” and his defense of it “incorrect”. There is a smell to the hockey stick that, in Lady Macbeth’s words, “all the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten” – nor all the investigations. And so Dr Mann has determined to sue it into respectability.

Speaking as a well-seasoned litigator, I wish I’d written that.

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At African-American Conservatives on Facebook, a picture that perfectly illustrates why I’ve had a problem with electric cars — and with the fact that Obama is using my money to fund them, all under the umbrella of “anthropogenic climate change”:

Dirty electrical cars

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The more I know about Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, the more I like him. And the more the Left knows about Walker, the more it fears him. I have a feeling all the fishing expeditions will come up empty. After the recall vote, all the dirt that can be dug probably has been dug.

allen-west-20101Speaking of presidential candidates, even my apolitical sister asked me, “Who’s going to be the Democrat nominee? Hillary? I don’t think she can win, and there doesn’t seem to be anyone else.” Exactly. I told her to keep an eye on Walker. I also really, really like Allen West, and I think he could make an Eisenhower-esque claim to having executive experience notwithstanding his lack of a governorship. He and Walker could be a very exciting President/Vice President package. I also have to admit to something of a girlish crush on West. I think he’s just amazingly good-looking. He looks so crisp and fresh.

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Proof that not all news anchors are just talking heads. These two, stuck without any audio, are really funny.

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Do we need to say again that true science is never settled? Or that stifling dissent is unscientific? Probably we do. We need to say it again and again and again until we are like the horns bringing down the walls of Jericho. And if someone’s going to be your trumpet, Charles Krauthammer is the Louis Armstrong of intelligent dissent.

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Every year in Laredo, something amazing happens:  on both sides of the border, people gather together to celebrate George Washington, but they do so with an exquisite Tejano twist.  As with the last Independent Lens documentary I wrote about, the documentary maker isn’t very good, but the subject matter transcends the production.

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Do you remember this creepy video, with elementary school children singing about the glories of the imagined hope that the Messiah Obama would bring to America? Well, someone’s updated it (h/t Sadie):

At CPAC, Dr. Ben Carson comes out swinging against President Obama

It turns out that, when Dr. Ben Carson gently chided President Obama’s policies during the National Prayer Breakfast, he was holding back. When he gave a speech CPAC, where he could freely speak his mind, Dr. Carson was more direct: If a hypothetical “somebody” in the White House “wanted to destroy this nation,” he would “coincidentally” do exactly what Obama has already done.

In the lead-up to his stunning accusation against Obama, Dr. Carson repeated a point he made during the National Prayer breakfast, which is that the national debt, standing alone, is well on its way to destroy America:

We’re reacting to what we see as our fiscal woes without planning for the future, without really caring about what is happening to the next generation. You don’t have to be a brain surgeon or a rocket scientist to understand that if we continue to spend ourselves into oblivion, we are going to destroy our nation.

It was clear that he next intended to imagine what a good presidency would look like. After his first sentence, though, the audience response was so strong that he realized he would have to use a different way to address the issue of White House leadership:

Let’s say you if you could magically make it into the White House (interrupted by wild and sustained applause at the thought of Dr. Carson in the White House). I take it back!

Rather than discuss what a good presidency would look like, Dr. Carson asked the audience to think about a bad, destructive presidency and how it would play out:

But let’s say somebody was there and they wanted to destroy this nation. What would you do? Let me tell you what I would do. First of all, I would create division among the people. I would have everybody pitted against each other because a wise man by the name of Jesus once said “a house divided against itself cannot stand.” And then I would encourage a culture of ridicule for basic morality and the principles that made and sustained the country. And then I would undermine the financial stability of the country, and drive us so far into debt that there was absolutely no chance that it could recover. And I would weaken the military and destroy the morale of the military. That’s what I would do and I guarantee you it would work. Now, the question is, it appears coincidentally that those are the very things that are happening right now. And the question is, How do we stop it. Can we stop it?

In that simple hypothetical, Dr. Carson managed to sum up every domestic policy that the Obama administration, working with a Democrat legislature, has enacted: a White House that colludes with the media to harass, demean, insult, and misrepresent every conservative person or conservative idea; a massive stimulus that benefited only preferred political players, followed by constantly rising government expenditures; and fundamental changes to the military by allowing homosexuals to serve openly and women to serve in combat units.

It’s unclear whether Dr. Carson, who has never held political office, is ready simply to dive into the White House in 2016. That’s not really important. What is important is that Dr. Carson is one more reminder that the up-and-coming generation of politically active conservatives has young stars – people like Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Sarah Palin, Allen West, and Ben Carson — who will reach their political peak in waves that wash over every election in the next sixteen years.

(Written by Bookworm; first published at Mr. Conservative)

At least for today, we don’t have to worry about whether Mitt Romney will come out swinging

The most recent ad from the Romney campaign reminds us that, during the primary, Romney was willing to fight.  This is a fighting ad:

I have no idea whether this ad gets viewed only by those of us who have already made up our minds in Romney’s favor, or if Romney has the funds and the venues to give an ad such as this one wider play. I certainly hope the latter. To the extent it’s repeated within the echo chamber, it’s reassuring that he’s willing to be tough, but toughness matters only if Romney can break through the MSM imposed cone of silence.

One more thing apropos the fascinating comments thread about Romney’s willingness to fight. This ad reminds us that there are two types of fighters: vicious and strong. Obama exemplifies the former. Romney can only win if he mans up and becomes the latter — he’s got to fight and fight really hard. And he’s got to counter every illegal low blow with a whompin’ big, totally legal, head shot.

Ooh! One more thing while I’m on the subject of fighting metaphors. There’s been a big hoo-ha amongst conservatives about a Florida ad showing Allen West wearing boxing gloves and punching old white people and black families. West is correct that it’s “classless” and “reprehensible” to the extent that it shows him hitting old people. Those who cry “racist,” though, should step back a little. The fact is that West does advertise himself as a fighter, so it’s perfectly reasonable to use a fight metaphor for a campaign ad.

Allen West: The politician who won’t pander

Most politicians would have pandered in response to the question a CAIR person posed in the video below.  Not Allen West.  As he said, near the end of his own answer to the question, “I’ve been on the battlefield….”  Maybe we ought to make battlefield experience a prerequisite for honest politicians.  It seems that having faced real guns a good indicator that the politician will have the strength to face rhetorical guns:

Hat tip:  Earl

Breaking the Obama party hold on America’s political system

I’ve been corresponding with a group of conservatives who are very strongly divided between Romney and Gingrich.  I’m pleased to say that, while the debate is substantively heated, it also never veers away from common decency and civility.  My latest contribution to the email string, right after mention of a brokered convention, was as follows:

“Allen West!  Allen West!  Allen West!  A proven leader.”

(I can dream, can’t I?)

For all the doom and gloom predictions right now, with various factions in the conservative movement unable to envision themselves voting for the other guy come next November, I continue to believe that, as is usually the case once the fecal matter stops spraying off the fan, that conservatives will coalesce around the Republican candidate.  I’ve said from the beginning, sitting here in California where primaries are really over by the time they get to my state, that my candidate is the guy named ABO (Anybody But Obama).  It’ll be a tough call if the ABO candidate is Ron Paul, who is as awful in foreign policy as Obama, but I still think it’s important to break the Obama political infrastructure before it becomes an inextricable part of the American body politic.

Missing: a commanding presence.

There is a quality to real leaders called a “command presence”. You know the type: they walk into a room and by their force of presence, command of the facts, unshaken confidence and leadership qualities, they capture the narrative and control the agenda. That command presence is a necessary mark of a good leader.

In part, this is what I’ve been looking for in these debates and the most recent debate in New Hampshire helped crystallize for me what is wrong with the Republican candidates: I have yet to see a convincing command performance.

I’ve seen it with Govs. Christie and Palin. I’ve seen it in Lt. Col. and Florida Congressional Representative Allen West. I thought that I saw it in Cain, Bachman and Gingrich. I’ve been especially Gingrich’s ability to control the  moronic chickadees of the MSM.

However, I definitely did not see a command presence when Governor Romney allowed an intellectual lightweight like George Stephanopoulos to control the narrative with his ridiculous obsession with contraception (I sense an inner conflict…care to share, Georgie?). Romney wanted to get along, to find the road to peace and harmony…so, instead, Georgie Stephanopoulos got to drive the agenda instead of getting slapped down and named for the trivial man he is.
So, after that, I was pretty much confirmed in my decision to support Gingrich as the one who best offered a vision and command presence for America. That was. This is now. The fact that Gingrich could not condemn the following ad that was posted by one of his PAC tells me that, when necessary, Gingrich will readily descend into the role of the demagogue, much like those on the Left.

You cannot be a proponent of capitalism while playing upon its worst caricatures for short-term political gain. This ad is vile. Romney was part of a turnaround corporation. Such companies play an important role in supporting the vitality and creative destruction and renewal of  capitalist economies. As history has shown over and over again, the alternative is far worse.

After this ad, I can no longer support Gingrich. We’ve already got a demagogue-in-chief. His name is Obama.

So, with great reluctance, I throw my support to Romney. Anybody but Obama!

 

President Allen West?

I believe I’ve mentioned on several occasions here that the more I hear from Allen West, the more I like him.  Is he ready to be President?  Is there time for him to step into the fray?

Allen West (Photo by Gage Skidmore)

I don’t know the answer to those questions, but I do know that Zombie is not sanguine about the prospects for 2012 with the current Republican roster.

What do you think?

As for me, I’m trying to remind myself that, back in 2008, before ObamaCare made RomneyCare an issue, I liked Romney.

UPDATE:  Meanwhile, on the Left, speculation continues about Hillary in 2012.

Lt. Col. Allen West — a real choice in Florida

Every two years, like clockwork, Marinites return the execrable Lynn Woolsey to Congress.  She’s so bad — by which I mean such a loopy Leftist — that I didn’t vote for her even when I was a Democrat.  I was a moderate; she was, and is, a nut case.  But still she wins, regularly sweeping in about 70% of the vote.

Voters here don’t care what Woolsey is, what she believes or what she offers; they just like that “D” after her name.  I have no doubt but that she’ll win again this year, for precisely the same reason.

If you’re in Florida’s 22nd District, however, you have the opportunity to vote for someone special.  I don’t know what the Republican/Democratic balance is in the 22nd District but, if it’s close, maybe he can win, and maybe there’ll be a true counterweight in Congress to Woolsey and her ilk.  If anyone has the cojones, as a freshman Congressman, to make waves, it’s West.

You can hear Allen West on the radio tonight

I know many of you enjoyed the video I uploaded of a speech by Col. Allen West (ret.).  Andrea Shea King is having him on her radio show tonight:

Tonight we’ll talk with Col. Allen West (US Army Ret), Congressional House candidate for Florida’s District 22 (Jupiter, Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray, Ft. Lauderdale).  West recently made headlines when a video of his straight-up speech went viral among political blogsites and cable news channels.

Col. West returns to the Andrea Shea King Show with his take on the alarming events happening in our nation’s capitol, why he’s running, and what he intends to do if elected to Congress.

Join us at 9 pm ET – link to listen here —> http://www.blogtalkradio.com:80/askshow/2009/12/23/the-andrea-shea-king-show

When it comes to education, liberals continue to be invested in affirmative action *UPDATED*

When I was a very little girl, back in the hard drinking 1960s, an expression I frequently heard was that someone or something needed a bit of “the hair of the dog that bit you.”  I used to think that actually meant people would consume dog hair to cure their ills.  It was only later that I learned that one of the best — and, of course, worst — remedies for a hangover is more alcohol.  Even as it cures the original hangover, it sets the drinker up for the next hangover.  It appears to be a cure, but is merely part of the problem.

I think that exactly the same can be said of affirmative action.  Ostensibly meant to provide minorities (read:  African Americans) with a necessary leg up in a fundamentally discriminatory culture, it actually creates a situation in which blacks never have to achieve, and therefore never do achieve.

The problem extends beyond the education world, which sees colleges and universities happy to play this nasty little game to assuage their collective white, liberal consciences.  For many years, it has been creating actual unemployment in the real world, where businesses that are tied to the bottom line cannot afford to play the same affirmative action game that colleges play so effortlessly.  Business, after all, don’t get the government help (read:  taxpayer money) that flows to our institutions of higher education.

I mention this now because of two articles that appeared with two days of each other in two bastions of liberal thinking, the Washington Post and the New York TimesThe WaPo reports on a study showing that minorities continue to fall behind when it comes to American higher education.  First, the problem:

A new report, billed as one of the most comprehensive studies to date of how low-income and minority students fare in college, shows a wide gap in graduation rates at public four-year colleges nationwide and “alarming” disparities in success at community colleges.

The analysis, released Thursday, found that about 45 percent of low-income and underrepresented minority students entering as freshmen in 1999 had received bachelor’s degrees six years later at the colleges studied, compared with 57 percent of other students.

Fewer than one-third of all freshmen entering two-year institutions nationwide attained completion — either through a certificate, an associate’s degree or transfer to a four-year college — within four years, according to the research. The success rate was lower, 24 percent, for underrepresented minorities, identified as blacks, Latinos and Native Americans; it was higher, 38 percent, for other students.

Only 7 percent of minority students who entered community colleges received bachelor’s degrees within 10 years.

If it were up to me, the solution would be to demand that minorities who enter American educational institutions have met the same standards as whites and Asians in those same institutions.  Only a head-in-the-clouds academic (read:  liberal) would think that it is reasonable or fair to tell African Americans that they don’t need to do well in order to enter colleges and universities, only to be surprised that, while actually attending those institutions, these conned minority students continue to do badly.  And only a head-in-the-clouds liberal would think that these same students would be able to, or even want to, stick it out at some fou-fou university, when they are pathetically scraping along at the bottom of the class.  In the real world, people have to hunger to achieve, they have to work hard, and then they get to enjoy the fruits of their labor.  Liberals deny that to blacks, and then they’re surprised when these same blacks neither want to nor are able to perform.

Sadly, the government and our educational institutions are run by these head-in-the-cloud liberal academics, so they’re determining the solutions — and, naturally, the solutions they endorse are the hair of the same dog that has been biting African-American students for the past 30 plus years:  more affirmative action, which is a disincentive to learning and achieving.  The WaPo article, admittedly, is rather coy about the affirmative action solution, but it’s implied between the lines:

The Access to Success Initiative, announced in 2007, predates President Obama’s American Graduation Initiative announced this year, which calls for the United States to regain the global lead in college degrees by 2020. Any progress charted by the 24 college and university systems, which include the University System of Maryland and state university systems in California and New York, will dovetail “very neatly” with the president’s goal, said Haycock, whose organization advocates for disadvantaged students.

[snip]

One bright spot in the research was the Pell Grant, the federal program to help low-income students through college. The study found that Pell recipients at community colleges completed their studies at a rate of 32 percent, the same as other students. Pell students who transferred to four-year colleges also graduated at the same rate, 60 percent, as other students.

A bill pending in Congress would strengthen the Pell program by raising the maximum grant and tying the program to inflation for the first time.

You got that, right?  The solution is to throw more money at institutions that take minorities, not to demand that minorities compete going into the schools, so that they can stick around, and then compete when they come out again.

We Americans have seen for thirty years that more money enriches the politicos and the administration and the unions, without making much difference in the student outcomes.  I figured that out back in the late 1980s, when I learned that the Sausalito school district, which is just north of San Francisco, was both the best funded and the worst performing district in California.  I don’t know if either of those facts still holds true for Sausalito in 2009, but it was an object lesson to me at that time that there comes a point where a system is so dysfunctional that money becomes irrelevant.

As long as public schools have no accountability to anybody (a situation that would change dramatically if we switched to a voucher system), and as long as the educational and political classes are committed to affirmative action, nothing is going to change at the college and university level.  Just as the drunk needs more alcohol to provide the appearance of a temporary cure for a deeper problem, so too do our educational institutions and our poor, deluded African American population demand more money as the solution to a problem that has little to do with money, and everything to do with the subtle racism of low expectations.

Things are different in the business world, and will continue to be so until Barack Obama has successfully “bailed out” the entire capital system, turning the U.S. into a giant, politically correct, bankrupt morass.  In the interim, as the New York Times reports, businesses don’t want blacks, even educated ones.  The Times report, of course, implies racism, with evil white capitalists anxious to depress “uppity blacks.”

Johnny R. Williams, 30, would appear to be an unlikely person to have to fret about the impact of race on his job search, with companies like JPMorgan Chase and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago on his résumé.

But after graduating from business school last year and not having much success garnering interviews, he decided to retool his résumé, scrubbing it of any details that might tip off his skin color. His membership, for instance, in the African-American business students association? Deleted.

[snip]

That race remains a serious obstacle in the job market for African-Americans, even those with degrees from respected colleges, may seem to some people a jarring contrast to decades of progress by blacks, culminating in President Obama’s election.

But there is ample evidence that racial inequities remain when it comes to employment. Black joblessness has long far outstripped that of whites. And strikingly, the disparity for the first 10 months of this year, as the recession has dragged on, has been even more pronounced for those with college degrees, compared with those without. Education, it seems, does not level the playing field — in fact, it appears to have made it more uneven.

[snip]

The discrimination is rarely overt, according to interviews with more than two dozen college-educated black job seekers around the country, many of them out of work for months. Instead, those interviewed told subtler stories, referring to surprised looks and offhand comments, interviews that fell apart almost as soon as they began, and the sudden loss of interest from companies after meetings.

As for me, I reject the Times’ implication that white owned American businesses are trying to sneak Jim Crow in through the back door.  Instead, the problem young, educated blacks have in the employment market arises because businesses have figured out that, because blacks aren’t required to have many skills going into universities, they’re equally unlikely to have when they emerge clutching a degree with the politically correct, affirmative action stamp of approval appended to the bottom.  In other words, affirmative action has so badly corrupted the “brand name” of the college educated black person, even a person who is intelligent and skilled is tainted by that corruption.

When history books are written, affirmative action is going to be recognized for what it is:  a terrible scourge, destroying the upwardly mobile black middle class.  As I said in my post accusing Obama of being the quintessential example of affirmative action, in that he is all college papers and no substance, affirmative action tells blacks that they don’t have to work to succeed.  That’s a powerful and corrupting message.  Even the best and brightest will economize their mental energies and do the bare minimum necessary to get into and get out of colleges and universities.  But as the system passes through more and more blacks who are either unable to achieve from the get-go, or unwilling to achieve because they’ve been assured of a free pass regardless, the black brand is going to be associated, as it was in the Jim Crow era, with people who are unintelligent, ineffective and lazy.  That this is not true for many graduates, or for many who don’t go to school, is irrelevant.  It is enough that the visible blacks have been corrupted by the system for all of them to bear that stigma.

Once again, liberalism, while parading as the blacks’ true friend, is proving itself to be their mortal enemy, destroying them by denying them the incentive and opportunity to be all that they can be.

UPDATE:  This seemed the perfect place to add a video of Congressional candidate Lieutenant Colonel Allen West, because he is the wonderful, marvelous antithesis of our affirmative action president: