The New Terrapin Gazette
(Though) elitists…constantly proclaim that morality is relative and that conscience is not inherent, somehow they are the ones who possess the proper definition of the “greater good.” If “good” is in all cases relative, then wouldn’t the “greater good” also be entirely relative? This inconsistency in their reasoning does not seem to stop them from forcing the masses through propaganda or violence to accept their version of better judgment.
Dispatches From A Tramp Abroad
The Turkish City of Kartal Is Kind To Its Homeless Animals
Israel vs. Hamas and the fallout on Gaza’s people: here’s a comment from a Turk who posted a comment on YouTube –
Palestinians, Arabs and whoever is involved in this over there, should first get together and create a legitimate government system. The world has given them more credibility than they actually deserve. We as people living on the world have long established social systems, it differs from country to country, but still, the system works and every individual human being is valued. So I suggest these guys to start thinking like the rest of the world has done thousands of years ago, and get themselves together. I remember Arafat, with a beard and a funny dress, kissing people on the lips etc. Also Kaddafi, as he likes the rank “colonel” and calls him so, nobody else in the Army is higher than this rank etc. And all the world witnessed the Libyan Army in the aftermath. Hence, the world has an order, we can criticize it like hell (Only in the civilized world by the way) but still, we have individual responsibilities as well as social. We have to educate or train the next, but some societies need more of this than others. To wrap up, we don’t even know who Israel is fighting to, this is not the first age with clans or tribes. They have to refrain from the usual unresponsive attitude and stick to the order that supplies running water, electricity, decent security, education etc… I once more praise Ataturk, thanks to him, we are not in this whirl but a decent legitimate country. Even the current government cannot change what he has set, even for an inch. Because it is well designed, stable, legitimate and worldly.
“Illiteracy is essential for a true Muslim society.” (So says Shukri Mustafa.) This is an excellent article by Nervana Mahmoud, an Egyptian blogger and commentator featured in BBC’s 100 Women list in 2013.
For möchtegerngermanophile: animals’ names in German, and funny animals’ names in German. It’s interesting to note that the old Indo-Germanic word aig + orn became Eichhorn, then Eichhörnchen. (Note from the editor: The Tramp and Yours Truly share this interest. Give it a chance — it has its rewards!)
Who could be behind the mysterious downing of MH17? It seems that more than one country has a precedent of planning, and, in a number of cases, carrying out, the shooting down of civilian aircraft. (Editor: the link is to a website that is not included in NTG’s list of reliable sources. The Tramp invites you to venture afield and speculate; after all, even a broken clock is right twice a day.)
The news reports passionate anti-Israel demonstrations in Paris and London. They are to be found in in Germany, as well.
Related: Hamas’s Intentions. I can understand the Israelis being fed up with the Hamas rocket attacks, and having to take some offensive actions. However it also seems that their counterattacks are too indiscriminate, resulting in unnecessary collateral damage, injuries and deaths. If, indeed, the Palestinian people are fed up with Hamas, the Israelis should be taking actions to sway the Palestinians to totally reject Hamas. Killing innocent Palestinian civilians, who have and want nothing to do with Hamas, is counterproductive. (See related comment below.)
Gül for PM — again! Turkey would be much better off if RTE would simply fade into oblivion, Abdullah Gül would become PM and Ekmeleddin İsanoğlu would be President. Videos: One, Two. (NB: these videos might be blocked in your nation.)
The most despised man in Israel…explains why the world is sick of Israel and its insanities. The commentary is here, along with a short biography of the author, Gideon Levy. Then there is this counter-argument of sorts.
Taqqiya reloaded: I must admit, in the early days, I too believed that Erdoğan was a “democratic Islamist”. His later actions have proved him to more despotic than democratic.
Safari Hunting Teenage Girl, no less. I don’t think this girl can participate in these “sporting” activities without financial and logistical support from her parents. Shouldn’t the criticism be directed more to her parents?
The Tramp’s Links
You noticed the photo the editor put at the top of this Number. It’s true: the city of Kartal, which is in the greater Istanbul metropolis, is now providing food and water for street dogs. The slogan on the feeding/watering box says, “[If] my belly is full, I’m in a good mood.” (Editor: This in a majority Muslim nation. Turkey is different, and that is one of the reasons it is important for Westerners to know more about it.)
This is a pretty fancy airliner!
Here’s another proof that the VA is broken: they cannot (or will not) even fix a disabled veteran’s broken wheelchair.
Summing up the recent problems in Iraq and Syria in four minutes and thirty-five seconds.
Were they actually trying to shoot down Putin?
Was it the Russians, the Ukrainian rebels or just Ukrainians?
If we’re not allowed to smoke it, may we at least construct houses out of it?
Science marches on: this amazing new weapon is absolutely non-lethal to humans and pets, but devastating to flies (and probably other nuisance bugs).
Maybe this lady should have worn a pin on her collar saying “Obama in 2012, Clinton in 2016″.
Coming soon to an L.A. neighborhood… gigabit internet access.
A note of interest from Stratfor.
Why did the Allies spend a fortune to keep a single prisoner in Spandau Prison? Probably for reasons similar to those that led the Turks to keep Abdullah Öcalan alone in the İmralı Island Prison.
How to do it, and how not to.
Figure the odds of getting bitten by Ricardo Suarez vs. getting bitten by a shark.
A net loss: What happens when the oceans are empty?
This could be useful….
Kurdish Pesmergas: this article explains why the Kurds are so tough.
The Supreme Court upholds Little Caesar’s right to feed Christian employees to the lions.
Save a hummingbird and have a friend for life.
Buddy does Lassie one better.
Uncle Sam is saving oil, but it does not lower the price we pay at the pump.
Aussie off-road comfort: it seems they have thought of everything.
Coming soon to a movie theatre near you… Java Forever.
The “Soviet Snowden” exposed secret KGB files way back in 1991/92.
The Personal Air and Land Vehicle is a sports car cum Helicopter. Well, if the Dutch did not win the biggest prize in football/soccer, they can still innovate in other areas.
Former US President Clinton On The Hostilities Between Hamas And Israel
The picture is clear, and it’s a shame anybody has to explain it to the “moral equivalency” loons:
Hamas was perfectly well aware of what would happen if they started raining rockets into Israel. They fired one thousand and they have a strategy designed to force Israel to kill their own civilians so that the rest of the world will condemn them.
They (Israel) know when Hamas attacks them that Hamas has set up a situation which politically it can’t lose, because they (Israelis) can say, “…well if I attack them back they always hide behind civilians and I’ll kill civilians, and if I don’t we’ll look like fools letting somebody shoot a thousand rockets at us and not responding”.
In the short and medium term Hamas can inflict terrible public relations damage by forcing (Israel) to kill Palestinian civilians to counter Hamas. But it’s a crass strategy that takes all of our eyes off the real objective which is a peace that gets Israel security and recognition and a peace that gets the Palestinians their state.
Anthropogenic Global Warming Is Not Science
The gospel according to Gore: obey or face hellfire
In the beginning, there was the messianic alarmism of An Inconvenient Truth. Gore’s inspired revelations both attracted attention and crafted the AGW movement as a cultic response to claimed impending catastrophe. A climate apocalypse was preached as the consequence of humanity’s sinful excesses, while penitential submission to authority was revealed as the key to salvation. The gospel of the cult was a grotesque parody of science; it employed techno-babble that was mythic rather than explanatory, and justified itself with reasoning that was hysterical rather than prudential. It was a modern instance of the lunatic excesses of fear-inspired fanaticism. It preached a variety of original sin that implied that man had been seduced by technology — and damned himself accordingly. Like all overzealous cults, it was rabidly intolerant.
It was probably assumed by all that science would prevail, insuring the integrity of the new crusade. It was not to be, for genuine science was reviled, and unbelievers — witches of a sort, evil deceivers corrupted by greed — were censoriously repressed, professionally persecuted, damned as liars, and shunned.
Virtually no one noticed the quintessentially religious nature of the mania.
Is climate change the result — to whatever degree — of human activity? Probably. Demurrer: this fact proves mankind’s influence on climate is trivial. The linked video is highly recommended. For more on climate and its deliberate misinterpretation, see this short presentation. Then have a look at this; as soon as it stops talking about the persecution of AGW skeptics, you can switch it off.
The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) — the bastion of the Gore-Hansen Cult — tries to downplay the significance of the Medieval Warming. The reason: it is obvious that the prolonged hot climate of that time could not have been caused by technology; that suggests that climate warms and cools naturally, and can do so in extreme swings. The IPCC claim is that while the medieval warm period did occur (it cannot be denied), it hardly matters at all because only northern Europe was involved. Yes, that lame response only raises more questions, and as this newsletter has already told you, the Medieval Warming was a global event; here’s confirmation of that fact.
Preaching The True Faith is more productive if the missionaries can silence their critics. Censorship is a favored tactic; here’s an example provided by the BBC.
Prescience — the mystic gift of the AGW myth
It’s an outrageous deceit, but few recognize it as such: warmers claim they can predict the future. Their tactic is usually to begin with what they hope will alarm the naive citizenry.
It has been the hottest May ever, says the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The world’s average surface temperature was 0.74 degrees Celsius above its 20th-century average. Alaska was almost 2 degrees Celsius above its 1971-2000 level.
That’s the opening line of commentary in Britain’s The Economist. (Source.)
When a publication of the stature of that magazine makes a flat statement like that, it’s hard to believe it can’t be true. What is the truth?
First, one can reasonably assume that NOAA is reporting in good faith.
Second, that’s not terribly impressive, because NOAA does not itself measure temperatures of the earth and the oceans. Who does? That’s a simple question with a rather complex answer, but an outfit called GISS will be among the first responses you get if you look. If you consider GISS important, you will then have to assess the quality (that is, the accuracy) of its data. Here’s an update of the continuing discussion; you can see there are serious problems.
This is not a new development. Bad temperature data, whether generated by carelessness or as part of a hoax, have been exposed before. Read the paragraph under the headline “A documentary you must see” in Number 266 of this newsletter.
You will note, please, that rather than schmooze you with avuncular assurances that 97% of all climate scientists agree the world is going to hell in a hand-basket (but you can save it by installing solar panels on your roof), this newsletter has presented you with real science. Yes, it’s complex, even daunting. But that’s science for you — and it’s not the smarmy fables you get from the AGW cult’s recruiters. Neil deGrasse Tyson waves his credentials at you and then tries to sign you up by playing a kindly Dutch Uncle. He’s a glib promoter, but what he’s promoting is counterfeit.
Science goes to great lengths to arrive at rational conclusions, as the links just above demonstrate.
A single datum is, at best, a slogan; good graphs show the truth
If you plot all the temperature measurements produced by the US government’s climate research facilities on a graph, you can get a good idea of where the world’s temperature has been and where it is today. You can’t tell where it will be, though. Nature has a way of surprising Her observers.
Note how temperature data can be used: if you are clever, you can draw a number of misleading conclusions. That’s why the most objective presentation of accurate records of past and present temperatures is in the form of a graph. Only graphs put the recent information into perspective, because without a graphic representation of history and the present, a single fact is virtually meaningless.
Bad data interpretation
Consider computer models. They appear to be utterly objective and scientific, but, like all predictive systems, they are imperfect — and they can be manipulated by hoaxers. Go here and take a look. Read Montford’s book; it’s a prime example of the truth behind the fable of the naked emperor.
At this point, you are supposed to notice how this newsletter makes an honest attempt to be skeptical of everything and everyone. Do you recall the mention of “Tony Heller/Stephen Goddard” in Number 351?
Here’s a summary that, like the Economist‘s article, depends on NOAA data, but does not misrepresent them.
The ideologically tainted media
Of course misrepresentation is only half of the story. The other half is censorship, of which the BBC provides an example.
Getting past the biased media can mean going directly to interested individuals. Consider, for example, this “C(lie)mate” commentary. It’s a bit offbeat in presentation, but it is solid in its reliance on genuine science. The linked video is pretty good for those new to the topic.
Then there’s this. Have a look…. You won’t see anything like this from the warmers; they believe all bad things come from mankind. Then watch the first minute or so of this; it makes clear that genuine science is making strides the warmers never heard or dreamed of. Finally, don’t skip this!
“So”, you ask, “what’s Al Gore up to these days?” Answer: the same old untruths and brass-bound nonsense.
Meanwhile Mike Mann, the principal architect of the bogus hockey stick graph, soldiers on with his hopeless lawsuit. This recent report from his intended victim makes for enlightening reading. Follow the link “Mann’s Hockey Stick Disappears” for the fabricator’s tacit admission that his famous graph is and always was incorrect (!). Then you might want to write to Mann and ask him whether he’s a Nobel laureate, as he has claimed; don’t expect the truth. (You can look up all the laureates’ names on Wikipedia.) Note: none of this is new — it’s been out there for over a year. But you won’t get any of it from Tyson.
The deceitful tactics are diagnostic: first the cult damns you for wrecking the climate, and then it waxes prophetic and apocalyptic. Its canon apes religion and mocks science. The facts simply don’t validate the accusation that you are guilty of crimes against Gaia.
Finally, here’s information on the role of carbon dioxide during drought conditions. It won’t go over well with the cult. Those folks think a beneficial chemical is a pollutant….
The USA Is Claimed To Be Helpless, Thanks To Its Stupid Intelligence Experts
The claim: when Snowden departed, he took enough extremely sensitive information with him to be able to prevent the USA from assassinating him, trying him for treason, or arresting him. If he dies for any reason, the information will be published for the world to see, and that cannot possibly be tolerated, according to some reports (such as this).
If this is true — and of course it could be an exaggeration — the US federal government created a madly irresponsible circumstance that had to lurch out of control sooner or later. That government has no one to blame but itself for the current disaster. By (first) archiving, (second) compiling, and (finally) making its most shameful secrets accessible to low-level employees and contractors (!), the intelligence establishment blundered.
There should be no such consolidated record, and access to the toxic information Snowden is alleged to have should have been impossible for virtually everyone.
That means that anyone attempting to aggregate the data should have tripped multiple alarms. That’s elementary.
Well, no one exploited the vulnerability of the data for some time. Perhaps that led the spooks to have moronic faith that it would never happen. That could in turn have reduced the level of protection accorded the files.
Snowden’s brilliant coup, if it is as described in the linked article, raises questions about what his real motives are. What is he going to demand? Why hasn’t he demanded concessions, such as being allowed to travel? Has he been waiting to be sure the websites and the key to decryption are all in place and operational?
The story has yet to play out, but one thing is clear: the USA’s incompetence is a disgrace that should be a lesson for future generations; for the current Powers That Be, however, it certainly could result in their utter subservience to Snowden.
Every citizen who values the founding principles of the USA knows exactly whom to blame for any catastrophic consequences resulting from this failure of intellect, imagination, management, and policy. Snowden is at the bottom of that list of villains.
Related, sort of: Snowden says journalists in particular need to encrypt their e-messages; everybody else might want to follow suit. He ignored the fact that NSA has stated it will focus especially on encrypted communications because it will assume the correspondents have something to hide that the government would want to know about. If you want privacy: send lots of messages created by a random character generator; when sending a genuine message, use a code to tell your correspondent that he can decrypt it; that code can be an introductory set of letters that puts one of several specified letters of the alphabet in the twenty-first position, for example. Use your imagination. Clutter your correspondence with meaningless but encrypted random letters and symbols (called “smoke” by cryptologists) that only your correspondents will know to ignore.
Obamacare Under Attack
If you got your news from The Drudge Report, you might believe that the Affordable Care Act (call it “ACA”) has been derailed by a federal court ruling (or maybe not). One well-known lawyer says he guesses the insurance plan might just be doomed; in this newsletter’s view, his opinions do not often inspire the confidence of rational persons.
What happened is this: the huge, hastily-compiled ACA is a mess, and what appears to be an unintentional error triggered a judicial attempt to hamstring the entire operation. That error is incorrectly viewed by some “wingnuts” as lethal to the ACA, while “progressives” insist that it should be overlooked out of deference to the overall intent of the legislation.
Note, by the way, that the speaker’s misinterpretation of the commerce clause of the US federal constitution leads to the conclusion that all human activity in the USA can be directly regulated (forbidden, mandated, controlled, taxed) by the national government; that is basically the contention of most “progressives” who seek the imposition of a Utopian regime. The speaker in the video says “I’m not a constitutional lawyer” as if that means that any constitutional lawyer would be able to settle the issue. He’s wrong.
For more on the commerce clause, begin with this excellent video (linked in Number 161 of this newsletter). From there, your resort to a good search engine will prove very rewarding.
What happens next? Either Congress will try for a quick fix, with the Republicans trying to turn a flat tire into a total breakdown of the vehicle, or a higher federal court will divine the desire of Congress and declare the sloppy wording of the ACA inconsequential. Neither event can reflect well on the federal government.
When judges decide issues by reading the minds of the legislators, there is a genuine danger to the body politic. Judges do not have psychic powers, so when legislatures produce monstrosities like the ACA (recall Madame Pelosi’s unwise confession that nobody knew what the ACA actually was, so it had to be passed in order to allow its contents to be discovered), the path to rationality is not always clear, even to the most clever judge. Sloppy, inattentive legislative effort is just that, and the ACA is a quintessential result of it. One can certainly detect in it the haste and disorganization of zealotry.
Yes, it was a lackluster and occasionally bizarre Congress, so its output is less than elegant.
Now as to the repair process, one should note that if it is proper for judges to intuit the greater intent of the Congress and act in concert with that guiding principle, one should also ask whether Congress is not in turn subject to a greater, more powerful intent — namely, the imposition of constitutional governance, as Mark Levin has suggested (see the book review here). What does that foundational ethic require? Should all legislation be subject to meta-analysis, such that the very soul of the nation inspires the wisdom of the legislative branch?
If one asks those pesky questions, the issue can be reduced to the merits of involuntary participation by the individual in a financial scheme designed to respond to the aspirations and inspirations of a ruling elite. Can majority votes in the legislative bodies be relied upon to pilot the ship of state? Or is it possible that highly ideological concepts might co-opt the federal establishment, invading the individual’s sovereign right to chart his course? How much power should the federal government have over each citizen’s financial, health-related and prudential decisions?
The ACA is a gigantic leap, and that it sometimes resembles a pratfall should surprise no one. At the very least, it tests the ethics, wisdom, and vision of all levels of government, and asks each voter to ponder the role government should play.
What, after all, is government for? Can it be at once obedient and authoritarian in all its relationships with the individual? Just how much authority should each person be permitted to exercise over his existence?
Responses to those questions are truly fundamental. They limn the critical distinctions between collectivists and individualists.
Are there still people who, in spite of recent events in Israel/Gaza, honestly believe that the “two state” solution to “Palestinian” complaints is viable? If so, they are probably found in The White House and Foggy Bottom. More’s the pity. (Read this Freudian slip.)
Israel should annex the “West Bank” and fully incorporate it rather than simply occupy it. Once firm borders have been redrawn, the Jewish state should drive all “Palestinians” out of Gaza and reclaim the evacuated territory.
Of course neither of those events will happen. Even if they both did, the sporadic violence would continue, as “the religion of peace” preaches the eradication of Israel and the murder or subjugation of all Jews.
At some point, there comes a time for a conflict to be settled by the emergence of a genuine winner. That necessarily involves the concurrent reduction of a defeated combatant to utter insignificance. Israel does not have to settle for the eternal malice of “Palestinians” any more than the USA had to settle for the enmity of the Japanese Empire. A war with no clear winner cannot be transformed by diplomats into a state of genuine peace. Recall North Korea….
This newsletter hopes Israel will destroy Hamas, root and branch.
And the prospects? Consider carefully these two quotes: “A deep and wide moral abyss separates us from our enemies. They sanctify death while we sanctify life”. Peace will come “…when the Arabs love their children more than they hate us”.
Those are the words, respectively, of Benjamin Netanyahu and Golda Meir.
Here you will find an excellent example of how not to think about the current struggle between Hamas and Israel. It’s egregious commentary. Do read the comments that follow it.
The Israelis were shocked by what they found. Does that mean Israel’s vaunted Mossad failed? What’s needed is perspective. The linked commentary is highly recommended.
The technical problems involved in discouraging tunnels are minimal — even trivial. Since few if any tunnels are below one hundred feet down, they can be easily detected and destroyed when they extend into Israel. Sonic and seismic devices can be adapted to the task, and shallow bores can position the sensors properly. Dozens of the devices could be implanted in a week, and decoys could be employed to discourage tunneling in specific areas.
The next step is elementary: when a target is detected, use the most powerful explosive available, and when it is in place, fill the bore with a heavy fluid (such as, well, water or mud). That will direct a devastatingly multiplied shock to the earth around the explosive — before blowing all the fluid out of the bore and up into the air. What fun!
None of the principles involved are ingenuous. Surely the Israelis have thought of it, and surely they can adapt existing tools and techniques to take advantage of the concept.
In sum: Gazans can be quickly and inexpensively convinced that tunneling into Israel is utterly impractical. Game, set, and match — and no noncombatants killed.
The evolution of the understanding of the first amendment
Freedom For The Thought We Hate, A Biography Of The First Amendment, by Anthony Lewis, MJF Books, 2007, ISBN 978-1-60671-098-2.
Lewis is on the staff of the New York Times, so his viewpoint is not genuinely neutral; expect some W-bashing as you go, but do realize that in many cases, W deserves it. Moreover, the facts of history, while they can certainly be distorted by partisan hacks, do have a certain concrete nature. When one deals with the judicial record, that nature is accessible. One can study the carefully-worded opinions of judges and trace the evolution of legal codes, doctrines, and interpretations.
Lewis is at pains to make clear a history of the opening of the judicial mind. He is something of an absolutist when it comes to freedom of speech and press, and his book does not deal with the complications introduced by biased reporting and cultic political correctness. Yet those issues float like dark clouds over the foundation laid by the courts.
Lewis would respond that he did not address any of those nasty, difficult problems because they have nothing to do with the freedom of the press, and he would be correct — up to a point. That point is rapidly arrived at when bias so taints the exercise of the freedom of the press that the electorate finds itself dealing not with an honest and inclusive debate, but hindered by a smothering swarm of slogans, catch phrases, trendy misstatements of facts, and a form of censorship that might be called non-reporting. No, the internet cannot be expected to be corrective, or to take up the slack.
Whether the judiciary should or could possibly deal with biased, slanted, censored journalism might be debated. Whether Lewis, given his political assumptions, would say that the proper response to the bias of the press is a fully free market in information and opinion is not certain. Free markets do tend to make “progressives” look for ways to narrow/control the consumer’s choices.
That means that this book is useful as a primer for an undergraduate college student of political science, but of little value to a person who wonders what in the world has gone wrong when a modern judge orders the punishment of a reporter who refuses to reveal his sources. Yes, mere confinement for the ephemeral crime of contempt of court (an infraction that should be exposed to the most thorough reconsideration) is a proxy for the rack and the lash: “Do as I demand, or suffer!”
That directly challenges Lewis’s concept of “freedom for the thought we hate”. It invites a second edition of his book — which, ideally, would at least recognize some of the questions raised by the journalistic hegemony previously (and, to an uncomfortable extent, today) enjoyed by the New York Times.
Summing up: overall, Lewis’s book is good. It’s solid history of judicial action in response to challenges to a narrow aspect of Liberty. Just don’t consider it more than a preface to the questions and dilemmas raised by journalism’s exercise of its freedom.
More on EMP weapons and solar eruptions
Apocalypse Unknown, The Struggle To Protect America From An Electromagnetic Pulse Catastrophe, by Peter V. Fry, Task Force on National and Homeland Security, 2013, ISBN 978-1-48209-277-6.
This volume is a more comprehensive and technically-oriented version of Fry’s Electric Armageddon. The latter book was reviewed in Number 351 of this newsletter. This earlier volume is larger and of use primarily to electrical engineers who are interested in the best ways to protect the national energy grid from damage. The proposals do not include the construction of giant Faraday cages to shelter those unique transformers that are no longer manufactured in the USA. The newer book is more useful to most people, and it’s less expensive because it is shorter.
Tunnels from Gaza into Israel.
Lois Lerner of the IRS: a harridan of monumental import for students of bureaucratic administration.
Human consciousness, already addressed in several numbers of this newsletter, is once again available for consideration. This talk is highly recommended.
Ideally, Israel should continue military operations as long as it takes to destroy Hamas. The enmity of the “Palestinians”, who are in all events virtually unanimous in their sincere desire to exterminate all Jews and eradicate Israel, will never be reduced, no matter what Israel does. Meanwhile: if this claim is factual, it is proof that the blockade of Gaza is ineffective. The only course of action left to Israel is the vigorous prosecution of the conflict. Yes, that means a dismaying amount of bloodshed. Is that ethical? Consider this fantasy: suppose Israel invented a time machine, and could send the IDF back to Nazi Germany. How forcefully should the rescuers from 2014 proceed?
Note to nutty militias whose members anticipate clashes with US federal forces, a la the Branch Davidian outfit near Waco, Texas: these toys could be very effective. But then you knew that.
Harry Reid explained. The commentary is both informed and too mild.
The IRS vs. The Tea Party, Part WhatIsItNow?
Obama wants to be impeached. He knows that would result in a massive surge in his popularity, and of course he has nothing to fear from a Senate that would never convict him. Republicans who urge impeachment are stupidly ignoring the fact that Slick, who did commit a crime while president, benefited greatly from the mistake made by the House of Representatives.
Here’s a troubling quote from Mark Shuttleworth: “If you read the catalog of spy tools and digital weaponry provided to us by Edward Snowden, you’ll see that firmware on your device is the NSA’s best friend. Your biggest mistake might be to assume that the NSA is the only institution abusing this position of trust — in fact, it’s reasonable to assume that all firmware is a cesspool of insecurity courtesy of incompetence of the worst degree from manufacturers, and competence of the highest degree from a very wide range of such agencies.”
Fixing the USA: read these proposals. Highest possible recommendation.
Did you know this? Hamas’s “…first act upon being handed Gaza when Israel gave up its control of the area was to destroy the greenhouses that Israel left them, as well as water-purifying plants, that would have allowed them to build up their infrastructure and to function in a productive way”. Source.
Crowds in Paris are “demonstrating” against Israel’s response to Hamas. Of course they are. But those rioters are not French — they are anti-French Muslims. They have rekindled Jew-hatred in France, and are a genuine danger to French culture. The French are fools to permit them to remain, of course, for the demographic weapon is openly acknowledged as Islam’s ultimate means of bringing Western Civilization down. Unless people like Geert Wilders are chosen as the architects of European policy, Europe will submit. — Meanwhile, in related news….
The credibility of Arab media. This is an old, old story.
How were/are planets formed? “By gravitational attraction” is the standard answer. Well, that’s wrong.
The monsters under the bed: Hillary is not much fun, but she has a tendency to unintentional self-parody, and can put on a very embarrassing show. Her political agenda is vague, and overall, she’s relatively clumsy. Elizabeth Warren — yes, that fake American Indian — is a lot smarter than Hillary, a lot more radical, and a lot less principled; she’s instinctively hypocritical (what? A scofflaw lawyer? Yes). Given a choice between the two horrors, prefer Hillary, as she would do the lesser damage. Warren’s vision of the future includes the eradication of capitalism — she’s a raving, arm-waving Bolshevik who makes Trotsky look like Sam Clemens.
The Big Easy: the lesson here is that most of the corruption in the USA is local, not federal. Yes, yes, Pelosi and Reid, and all that. Still: the feds have evolved a system that uses, rather than breaks, the law.
An excellent candidate for the Senate. Don’t ignore him!
Sarah Palin is lots of fun, and a she’s also admirable. She would have made a good VP (consider the contrast between her and the scatterbrained current reality). That’s as far as it goes; Boehner is right. After all, the Senate is firmly Obamite. Now.
If you are interested in Marxism, Obamoid tax policy, economics and the realities of today, you must read this prodigious essay by Jonah Goldberg. He is the scholarly author of Liberal Fascism, a fine book reviewed by this newsletter. Subscribe to Commentary and be enlightened.
Essential wisdom. You are welcome.
Give this instance of censorship a little thought.
Could this crackpot scheme be genuine? It’s not likely, but the claim is amusing.
A clear thinker ruminates on changing times. It’s trenchant commentary, and brilliant, but not exactly entertaining.
What matters is not the firearm — it’s the person. Read this highly recommended discussion of what motivates and rewards mass murderers.
Snowden and the NSA: “This isn’t about national security — it’s about power”. Yes. Recommended.
Oh, good! Here’s Chucky again, returning to tell us that because creating a corporation is an optional activity, the government’s rules must apply to that corporation, even if they violate the religious Liberty of the people involved. The federal supreme court does not agree with him, but like all true ideologues, Chucky advocates autocratic political correctness — so Liberty be damned. Yup, that’s the Chucky we know too well. (Chucky is a bad man. He has been scolded in sixteen previous numbers of this newsletter.)
Is this what “progressivism” means? Probably not. It’s more of an economic program with social overtones, but there are always nutcases who are ready to bring down simply every conventional hindrance to the expression of unconventional selfish behavior. This case is why many conservatives fear libertarian goals: call it the “broken dam” effect.
A reminder: there is a good news aggregator on the internet. It will keep you more current than this newsletter can, and it’s more sharply focused than The Drudge Report.
Perhaps you have tiny reservations about Obamacare. You might even wonder whether it’s the Big Fix that was promised. Fortunately this newsletter has discovered a short video that makes clear that the legislation is comprehensible because it was masterfully drawn up.
Here’s a short, three-part introduction to what the science of the next decade might discover. Or perhaps that advance will take longer…. (By the way, pay particular attention to the third part.)
The masthead includes a quote from the works of Tyler Durden.
Publisher: The Eagle Wing Palace of The Queen Chinee.