If every undecided voter would simply read articles by guys like Kristol, Krauthammer and Barone, the GOP would be preparing for signifigant gains on Nov. 7, unfourtunately many of them are watching "The View."
Here Kristol makes some good points and gives us some interesting poll numbers that you may not have heard.
Who's Really in Denial?
It's not President Bush.
by William Kristol
"Americans face the choice between two parties with two different attitudes on this war on terror."
--George W. Bush, September 28, 2006
President Bush is right. It would be nice if he weren't. The country would be better off if there were bipartisan agreement on what is at stake in the struggle against jihadist Islam. But despite areas of consensus, there is still a fundamental difference between the parties. Bush and the Republicans know we are in a serious war. It's not the Bush administration that is in a "State of Denial" (as the new Bob Woodward book has it). It's the Democrats.
Consider developments over the last week. Democrats hyped last Sunday's news stories breathlessly reporting on one judgment from April's National Intelligence Estimate (NIE)--that the war in Iraq has created more terrorists. More than would otherwise have been created if Saddam were still in power? Who knows? The NIE seems not even to have contemplated how many terrorists might have been created by our backing down, by Saddam's remaining in power to sponsor and inspire terror, and the like. (To read the sections of the NIE subsequently released is to despair about the quality of our intelligence agencies. But that's another story.) In any case, the NIE also made the obvious points that, going forward, "perceived jihadist success [in Iraq] would inspire more fighters to continue the struggle elsewhere," while jihadist failure in Iraq would inspire "fewer fighters . . . to carry on the fight."
What is the Democratic response
to these latter judgments? Silence. The left wing of the party continues to insist on withdrawal now. The center of the party wants withdrawal on a vaguer timetable.
Bush, on other hand, understands that the only acceptable exit strategy is victory. (If, as Woodward reports, he's been bolstered in that view by Henry Kissinger, then good for Henry. Invite him to the Oval Office more often!) To that end, Bush should do more. He should send substantially more troops and insist on a change of strategy to allow a real counterinsurgency and prevent civil war. But at least he's staying and fighting. And the great majority of Republicans are standing with him. The Democrats, as Bush has put it, "offer nothing but criticism and obstruction, and endless second-guessing. The party of FDR and the party of Harry Truman has become the party of cut-and-run."
So there really is a profound difference between the parties, as Democrats are happy to acknowledge, since they think Iraq is a winning issue for them. The Democratic talking point is this: We're against Bush on Iraq, but we are as resolute as Bush in the real war on terror (understood by them to exclude Iraq). Except that they're not.
That's why last week's votes in Congress on the detainees legislation were so significant. The legislation had nothing to do with Iraq. It was a "pure" war-on-terror vote. And the parties split. Three-quarters of the Democrats in the House and Senate stood with the New York Times and the American Civil Liberties Union for more rights for al Qaeda detainees, and against legislation supported by the Bush administration (as well as by John McCain and Joe Lieberman). Some Democrats in competitive races--such as Rep. Harold Ford, running for the Senate in Tennessee--supported the legislation. But it remains the case that a vote for Democrats is a vote for congressional leaders committed to kinder and gentler treatment of terrorists.
No wonder voters think the country will be safer from terrorism if the GOP retains control of Congress. And no wonder that focus groups--according to the Democratic polling firm of Greenberg Quinlan Rosner--show that "attacks on Democrats for opposing any effort to stop terrorists . . . were highly effective." The Democratic pollsters recommended countering the attacks forcefully. But how? There are votes, in black and white in the Congressional Record, ready to be used in campaign ads.
The most important front in the confrontation with terror-sponsoring, WMD-seeking Islamic jihadism in the next two years may well be Iran. Republicans are viewed by a 12-point margin as the party that would be more likely to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. We have been critical of the Bush administration's lassitude in attending to this task. But with sand in the diplomatic hourglass running out, voters can fairly be asked: Would Bush have more help in denying Ahmadinejad nuclear weapons from a Congress controlled by Republicans or by Democrats (whose main suggestion has been to cozy up to Iran without insisting that it verifiably suspend its nuclear program)?
Off-year elections--especially when one party controls the presidency and Congress--are almost always dominated by the expression of grievances with that party's performance. The Bush administration and the congressional leadership have given cause for grievance. But the choice is so stark this November that grievances should be put aside--if Republicans have the nerve to continue to clarify the choice over the next month. Last week was a good
By the way, if anyone out there knows why I have been unable to post pictures on my blog recently, i'd appreciate their advice.
Saturday, September 30, 2006
If every undecided voter would simply read articles by guys like Kristol, Krauthammer and Barone, the GOP would be preparing for signifigant gains on Nov. 7, unfourtunately many of them are watching "The View."
Posted by Falling Panda at 8:39 AM
Monday, September 25, 2006
Had any doubt that the Democrats are in trouble? Now it’s official.
Realizing that national security is only going to hurt them if they keep bringing it up, this week Democrats went to a “security” issue, which they know they can use to their advantage. Social Security.
For weeks the Democrats campaigned using the mind-boggling illogical one-two punch of simultaneously attempting to convince us that President Bush was needlessly trying to instill a fear of terrorism in us but that we were no safer than we were before 9/11, When the public saw through this absurdity and Democrats saw the closing gap in the opinion polls, they decided to whip out their scare tactic of choice.
George Bush wants to kill your grandma!
You laugh, but it was only a year and a half ago that the DNC ran a video on its website which featured a cartoon in which the President hurls an old lady in a wheelchair down a flight of stairs.
So on Saturday, in their response to the President’s weekly radio address, the Democrats tried to scare themselves up some more votes.
Ed Perlmutter, the Democratic nominee for an open Colorado house seat, the race for which is considered one of the closest in the nation, gave the response and got right down to business terrifying old people, and he used Social Security as the Boogeyman.
“The GOP scheme would threaten senior citizens who worked hard, played by the rules, and simply seek to live their golden years with some financial stability and security.”
When the president tried to save Social Security, shortly after his election victory, by proposing that younger workers have the option of investing a small part of their benefits into private accounts, Democrats jumped at the chance to politicize the issue.
Their strategy was threefold.
First deny that there was any problem with Social Security. This flew in the face of President Clinton’s 1998 State of the Union speech where he encouraged congress to use the budget surplus to “Save Social Security first,” but who cares? Clinton was gone and they were desperate to hand Bush a loss after his humiliation of John Kerry several months earlier.
Next, refuse to debate the issue or offer any proposals of their own. (Not offering any alternatives is another long standing Democratic strategy. For more on this, see Iraq.)
Finally, throw Grandma down the stairs. Scare the living crap (perhaps literally) out of the group who votes with the most frequency in this nation in order to kill the proposal. That’s where Perlmutter picked up the ball.
What the Democrats know, and what they didn’t want Grandma to know was that the president’s Social Security plan had absolutely no effect on anyone currently above the age of 55. Zero, Zip, Nada. So when Perlmutter says:
“The GOP scheme would threaten senior citizens who worked hard, played by the rules, and simply seek to live their golden years with some financial stability and security.”
“My opponent and his Republican friends in Washington must be fans of the TV show Jeopardy. Because that's the position they'll put seniors in if they succeed in their plan to privatize Social Security.”
He’s simply lying.
Not only that, but he managed to alienate Jeopardy fans across the country. He’s lucky that Democrats tend to prefer Wheel of Fortune.
Forget for a moment that the Democrats refused to even debate a proposal for Social Security reform, which might help ensure that the program still exists when I’m eligible for benefits, and could also increase recipients benefits tenfold if they opted (not forced) opted into the program.
But they didn’t hesitate for a millisecond before they threw Bush right onto the “third rail” of American politics. And they lied to their own mothers in order to do it.
So now, desperate not to let a silly issue like terrorism muck up their plans of making Nancy Pelosi Speaker of the House, Democrats send out this rookie Perlmutter to do the dirty work to make sure that the elderly are shaking in their boots, terrified of a plan that is obviously so terrible that even debating it could cause seniors to end up in the poor house.
Perlmutter also gave us this gem:
“In 1995, my opponent advocated abandoning seniors……”
Really? Abandoning them where? The desert? Sea World? Downtown Detroit? Was his opponent going to take every senior citizen in Colorado and put them in a home? Or perhaps GOP candidate Rick O’Donnell advocated getting all of the seniors, putting them in a giant rocket and shooting them to the moon. That would solve the Social Security problem pretty quickly. Maybe you should elaborate a little on this one Ed.
“….and today he is abandoning the truth.”
Oh, he’s abandoning the truth. Got it.
Funny how you just told us that Republicans are going to hurt seniors by privatizing Social Security, with a plan that doesn’t even effect today’s seniors, and yet it’s your opponent who’s “…abandoning the truth.”
What will the Democrats tell seniors next? I can’t say. But it’s obvious that they are willing to go to great lengths in order to scare seniors in regards to the Social Security issue.
Next week we’ll hear that if Bush’s proposal to privatize Social Security passes, Matlock will no longer be aired in syndication. Democrat’s will be in the majority for years to come if they can convince elderly voters of that one.
So how can Republicans combat this latest round of misleading Democratic rhetoric on Social Security? Unfortunately, they can’t. And not just because “Ed Perlmutter Lied, My Grandma Cried” is way too long to fit on a bumper sticker.
The Democrats 30 year track record of politicizing Social Security will not end until Social Security itself ends. Then all responsibility for the collapse of the program will deservedly lie with them, due to their desire to use the program for political gain rather than a desire to actually fix it.
As for Perlmutter, those who are truly concerned about the future of Social Security can only hope that he loses and loses big. Maybe then, Democrats will finally learn that they can’t scare their way into office, by telling tall tales about the big bad Republican wolf, who wants to utterly destroy your grandma’s life.
Posted by Falling Panda at 8:38 PM
September 25, 2006
Bill Clinton: Play It as It Lies
By Ronald A. Cass
Former President Bill Clinton, never one to let truth stand in the way of a good line, has decided to reincarnate himself as our tough, anti-terror President. The man who ran away from military service and displayed striking contempt for our armed forces has now announced that he did more - and would do more - to combat Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda than anyone else. In his view, he should be recognized as the best man to fight that enemy.
Speaking to Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday, Clinton made a bevy of startlingly anti-factual remarks. He announced, for instance, that conservatives had criticized him for obsessing about bin Laden during his presidency - rather than the truth that he was roundly condemned for doing next to nothing about this serious threat to American security. Clinton blamed the Bush Administration for failing to stop the al-Qaeda terrorists before 9/11, saying that the Administration had eight months to get bin Laden and didn't. That conveniently overlooks that Clinton's Administration had eight years to do that job, with al-Qaeda using the last two of those years to plan 9/11.
One of Clinton's bigger whoppers was this declaration about the fight against bin Laden: "I got closer to killing him than anybody has gotten since. And if I were still president, we'd have 20,000 more troops [in Afghanistan] trying to kill him."
The man who was in the Soviet Union demonstrating against the American military during Vietnam, who as President left our armed forces short on so many fronts, now is - in his own 20/20 hindsight - The Defense President. Now he criticizes the Bush Administration for not doing enough, proclaims himself the champion of effective military action, and implies none too subtly that the fight against terrorism would go better if we had a Clinton in the White House instead of a Bush.
This isn't mere spin. It's full-scale invention.
Before anyone starts taking our most recent ex-President too seriously, let's review the bidding. Clinton wasn't the President who ordered the armed forces to go after bin Laden without reservation, to get him "dead or alive." He wasn't the one who sent thousands of troops after al-Qaeda and nations that harbor and support terrorists
Instead, President Clinton responded to attacks on our troops in Somalia by withdrawing, and responded to attacks by al-Qaeda on our embassies in Tanzania and Kenya by bombing the aspirin factory of an innocent pharmaceutical firm in Sudan. He reacted to al-Qaeda's bombing of the USS Cole by lobbing a few cruise missiles at empty tents in the desert. He turned down Sudanese offers to cooperate in tracking down and capturing bin Laden.
The bipartisan 9/11 Commission concluded that - far from doing more than anyone to kill the brutal murderer who now is the international face of terrorism - President Clinton had flatly refused to allow the military or CIA to kill Osama bin Laden. Clinton's instructions were that bin Laden should be taken, if at all, alive not dead. CIA officials reported that this instruction cut the chance of success in half.
That is not to say that the Clinton Administration wasn't in a better position to eliminate bin Laden. Evidence before the Commission showed that the Clinton Administration had live footage of Osama bin Laden at a camp in Afghanistan in the Fall of 2000, a year before the 9/11 attacks, but didn't act. NBC's Tom Brokaw, playing the tape on-air in 2004, noted rightly that this was an enormous opportunity lost. Having gotten bin Laden in your sights isn't something to brag about if you weren't willing to pull the trigger.
Clinton, like all presidents, had some top-notch advisers, including some thoughtful advisers on military and foreign affairs. But he is quintessentially a temporizer, one who always has had difficulty reaching a conclusion and sticking to it, and not someone who was terribly interested in either preserving our military power or using it effectively in world affairs. He'd much rather talk one on one with world leaders, persuaded he could convince them to do what he wanted by the concerted application of charm.
Talk and compromise - not clear moral principles and the will to do whatever is needed to support them - were the hallmarks of the Clinton Administration, reflecting the person at the top. Nothing Clinton says now can change that, though he still evinces conviction that he can talk us into anything - just as he thought he could when he denied point blank having had anything to do with Monica Lewinsky. Clinton always has been the one who, caught in a compromising position, would disarmingly ask, as the parody has it, "what are you going to believe, me or your own eyes?" His instinct for lying, even under oath, earned him the second presidential impeachment in American history.
Contrast Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. Consider, for example, their different approaches to Yasser Arafat.
The Clintons cozy relationship with the Arafats was symbolized by Mrs. Clinton's embrace of Mrs. Arafat - on stage immediately after a speech by Mrs. Arafat condemning Israel. President Clinton's relationship, though less picturesque, was no less close. Arafat was the world leader Clinton met with most often. Clinton was certain he could talk Arafat into making peace in the Middle East - and secure Clinton's legacy. Clinton invited Arafat and Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Barak to the now infamous Camp David summit meeting of 2000. He pressured Barak to offer heroic compromises, only to have Arafat at the last minute turn to Intifada to try to get more. In the end, Clinton's charm wasn't enough.
President Bush, in sharp distinction, saw Arafat as a terrorist and refused to meet with him unless he renounced the destruction of Israel as a goal and terror against civilians as a means. Bush, not Clinton, assured Israel of our full support against terrorism - and meant it.
Clinton realizes that history's judgments often are shaped as much by what is written in the aftermath of an event as they are by the facts of the event. The Kennedy family relentlessly spun the myth of Camelot to turn a failed presidency into the fantasy of an American Renaissance. Having long modeled himself after JFK (minus the fashionable, universally admired, classy wife), Clinton now seeks to redefine his presidency - and pave the way for his ultimate revenge: Hillary in office for "Clinton, Act Three."
Presidents often find it hard to leave the stage. The day of Bush's first inauguration, Clinton lingered for hours at Andrews Air Force base trying to hang on to the attention he had so enjoyed as President. He still seeks the limelight.
But desperation to be noticed after leaving office, to have the respect and affection Clinton craves, isn't a substitute for doing the right thing when in office - any more than lies are a substitute for honesty, or indecision a suitable alternative to moral courage.
On the golf course, Bill Clinton is known for his dislike of playing his ball where it lies, scoring honestly, and taking his lumps as the rest of us duffers must. He makes his own score, always a good deal better than the real number.
Someone else should be trusted to do the scoring when it comes to Clinton's time in office. In the history books, he deserves to be counted as the President who did not protect us against al-Qaeda, who left the impression they could attack us without penalty, whose wasted opportunities contributed to the travesty of 9/11.
Tough talk now should not be allowed to obscure that fact. Lies now should not go unanswered.
Ronald A. Cass is Chairman of the Center for the Rule of Law, Dean Emeritus of Boston University School of Law, and author of “The Rule of Law in America” (Johns Hopkins University Press).
© 2000-2006 RealClearPolitics.com All Rights Reserved
Posted by Falling Panda at 12:56 PM
Sunday, September 24, 2006
Sphere: Related Content
While I am in New York giving my speech, Paco here has full control over the government. You will do as he says!
I remember when, I remember, I remember when I lost my mind
There was something so pleasant about that place.
Even your emotions had an echo
In so much space
And when you're out there
Yeah, I was out of touch
But it wasn't because I didn't know enough
I just knew too much
Does that make me crazy
Does that make me crazy
Does that make me crazy
Posted by Falling Panda at 5:41 PM
Friday, September 22, 2006
Much Too Cozy With Chavez
INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY
Politics: It's good to see Democrats put country above politics, as many did in repudiating Hugo Chavez's lunatic attacks on our president. But too many are still in the thug's debt and must dissociate with more than words.
That's important because Chavez's crazed speeches this week, declaring President Bush "the devil," leave the scent of political blood in the water for plenty of Democrats.
They know their own anti-Bush ravings could come back to haunt them on Nov. 7, given the enormous wave of public revulsion at Chavez's words in the U.S.
After all, potential GOP TV ads featuring Democrats' own attacks on Bush, back to back with Chavez's words, as the Felipe Calderon team did in Mexico's election, could ensure that Democrats pay a high political price for their past words.
Thus, Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., made a politically savvy but still commendable defense of the U.S. in response to Chavez's attack: "Don't come to my country and attack my president."
But Democrats who've been cozying up to the Venezuelan dictator in the past few years are the ones who deserve the spotlight.
They have, like Rep. Bill Delahunt, D-Mass., Sen. Lincoln Chafee, R-R.I., and Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., gone on junkets to Venezuela to admire Chavez's "revolution" in his dog and pony shows.
Worse, they've willingly gotten themselves into Chavez's political debt by accepting subsidized heating oil for their supposedly underserved residents. Rangel had nothing but praise for Chavez in February upon taking low-cost heating oil for his Harlem district.
But none have been as involved with Chavez as Delahunt, who brokered Chavez's cheap-oil program. He called Chavez's attack "silly," but then told the Boston Globe it was all Bush's fault.
Rep. Jose Serrano, D-N.Y., Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., and Rep. Ed Markey, D-Mass., all helped with deals for 40 million gallons of cheap oil via Venezuelan-owned Citgo, which claims to have "helped 181,000" households. It now says it will double that.
Disturbingly, the U.S. Energy Department's Sam Bodman dismissed this Chavez oil program as "corporate philanthropy."
It doesn't look like that when we see these same friends-of-Chavez congressmen vote against every single offshore drilling bill and proposed natural gas pipeline when those bills come up in Congress. Chavez desperately wants high oil prices, and to see pro-Chavez congressmen voting against bills that would cut energy prices not just for the poor but for everyone is, frankly, suspicious.
These actions contrast sharply with those of Chicago Democrats who told Chavez to beat it with his offer of $4 million in cheap transport fuel, and then started probing Chavez's bid to penetrate their city's electoral apparatus through voting machine contracts.
For Chavez, it's obvious that Congress' cheap-oil Democrats will accept political favors from literally anyone — even a foreign dictator — which certainly puffs up his sense of power.
That emboldens him to step up aggressive actions against the U.S., like his recent alliance with nuclear wannabe Iran and his purchase of advanced jet fighters from Russia that menace us directly.
The Venezuelan dictator vows to drive oil prices as high as $100 a barrel if the U.S. takes action against Iran. That cheap oil game isn't about helping the poor — just some very gullible Democrats.
Posted by Falling Panda at 3:00 PM
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
PART 1 - ISLAM
Remember that kid in grade school who would throw a fierce tantrum when he didn’t get his way? Or the one with the ball, who would leave with it if you didn’t choose to play the game he wanted to play? More and more, those who adhere to the Islamic faith are reminding me of that kid.
First, it was a cartoon that they didn’t like--a drawing of their prophet, likenesses of whom are strictly forbidden. Muslims packed the streets and made it so the Danish artist who drew it has to look over his shoulder when he goes anywhere for the rest of his life. Several thousand guys named Mohammed have vowed to kill him if they ever find him.
Now, Pope Benedict XVI quotes somebody who was interpreting something the prophet actually said and they are back in the streets calling for The Pope’s head. These inflamed Muslim fundamentalists have exhibited their maturity further by burning a few churches down. Nice. Some of the churches were not even Catholic churches. They also want the Pope dead. He has since beefed up security in order to avoid the predicament, in which his predecessor found himself after he was shot by __ __________ __________. (Three Guesses.) Answer: An angry Muslim.
As a result of this I am going to break with America’s lawmakers and journalistic establishment and stop being P.C. about it. “Religion of peace" my arse.
I pride myself on being able to break with those I support when the rhetoric ceases to mirror reality. And what I have seen of Islam since 9/11 is not the peaceful religion that President Bush so often describes it as.
As practiced by hotheads in streets around the world, it is an intolerant, violent religion whose disciples become furious at the slightest jab at their faith, yet is almost silent when it comes to the violence propagated in the name of that faith.
Where are the moderate Muslim leaders condemning Jihad and fatwa? Where are the Muslims who actually believe that Israel has a right to exist and that the Jews are better than monkeys and apes? Where are the intellectual followers of Islam who should be countering the conventional Muslim world prattle that the West has declared war on Islam rather than terrorism?
Guess what? They don’t exist. And if they do, they have been eerily silent over the past five years.
"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword
the faith he preached"
That was the text quoted by the Pope, which has caused the uproar. Ironically, the uproar has done little more than to confirm the truth contained in the quote itself.
Because of Muslims' apparent adherence (or at least their laissez-faire attitude towards) spreading the faith by “the sword,” we have witnessed some of the most inhumane acts in the history of the world. Buildings collapsing, children getting blown up by suicide bombers, women stoned to death for speaking their minds. If adherents to other religions committed these atrocities with the frequency of their occurrences in Islamic world, words such as “barbaric” and “genocidal” would be tossed around without a second thought. But we keep hearing that Islam is a “religion of peace.”
Many scoff at the President when he claims that the terrorists hate us because of our freedoms, but in reality he’s dead on. The two big ones, which radical Muslims have a problem with, are the freedom of religion--they have stated they will kill every single infidel in order to eliminate it--and the freedom of speech. Cartoons and Papal speeches fall into that category.
Now despite my harsh words, the ignorance of Islam cannot be laid entirely on the Islamic people. Governments in the Middle East and elsewhere have successfully used Islam to keep their people fearful, submissive and radicalized. It’s the perfect religion with which to do so, due to its tendency to tolerate and even encourage violence. Don't go along with it and, boom, you're dead.
Because of this, the religion can only be torn down and rebuilt internally. Removing or destroying the governments who misuse it to their advantage and allowing people freedom to figure the religion out for themselves is key.
Despite what you learned in the shallow halls of academia, Americans are an incredibly tolerant people. When Islamists knocked down the World Trade Center and that crazy lady danced around in the streets with that insane shrieking sound emanating from her mouth, Americans bent over backwards to make it clear that we were not angry at Muslims but rather at a certain interpretation of their religion. Recently, it has been difficult for Americans to maintain such a charitable interpretation. More and more of us are reaching the conclusion that Islam cannot peacefully coexist with the rest of the world in its present form.
How can truly peace-loving people live in a world in which an entire religion full of people flip out over a freakin’ cartoon?
If you really want peace you’re going to have to learn to be tolerant when someone is critical of your faith. For example, do you see Christians burning Madonna in effigy when she comes onto the stage at one of her concerts attached to a crucifix?
Historically, the Pope is a dictator’s best friend. Modern Popes never support military action, even when the stated goal is to get rid of a murderous monster. Iran’s mullahs should be quelling their people’s anger, because if we choose to strike Iran’s nuclear facilities, they’re going to need the moral authority of the
Pontiff in order to turn the world against our actions.
Americans want to accept Islam. I know I do. We can live together, but only if the Muslim population learns how to behave. Leaders of Islamic republics and nations in which Islam is the dominant religion bear the lion's share of responsibility to make this happen.
We are not at war with Islam right now. We are at war with a group of extremists who subscribe to a culture of death and have an incredibly warped sense of reality. However, if we begin to see that the majority of Muslims subscribe to these beliefs, then we will be at war with Islam. Since the West is living in the 21st century and much of Islam appears to be living in the 5th, it will not be a war that we are likely to lose.
You can’t have it both ways. If you choose to kill and maim as a tenant of your religion, then you should expect critics to tell you that you are evil and inhumane. If you can’t handle that, then stop committing the evil and inhumane acts. If the mobs in the streets going ballistic over the Pope and a Danish cartoon are not the same as suicide bombers and hijackers then those mobs need to condemn those members of your faith who are. If you don’t then we have every right to lump you together and you become the definition of that faith
So my advice to Islam is: Grow up. Prove me wrong. Prove to me that you truly are a “religion of peace” and that the majority of you do not want to spread your faith by means of “the sword.” Fight the extremists in your religion and let us see you do it. Otherwise, we’ll just get our own ball and you’ll be all alone on the playground with no one to play with. And you should try to do it before we no longer require all of that oil you’re sitting on.
PART 2 - ROSIE
What? You didn’t think I was going to leave you out of this Ms. O’Donnell did you?
When you say something as mind-bogglingly ignorant as “radical Christianity is just as great a threat to our nation as radical Islam” most of us who watch the news and can read beyond a 5th grade level,laugh a bit and use your ignorance as further evidence that most celebrities are out to lunch and say things based on what their emotions tell them rather than the facts.
But here’s the scary part, at least half of the studio audience attending the taping of “The View” that day applauded Rosie’s insane comments.
What does this tell us?
First, let’s address the false nature of the statement itself.
There is no movement within what some in this country consider “radical” Christianity, which calls for the deaths of anyone based on their religious beliefs.
As we all know, Rosie is a lesbian and a gay activist. Like many gays, her hatred of the GOP and President Bush stems from one big issue. This, of course, is the GOP’s opposition to the legalization of gay marriage, an issue of little consequence, which both sides use as a political weapon against their adversaries.
Now, radical Islamists want to kill you whether you’re gay, straight, black or white. In “radical” Christianity, there is no movement that advocates killing homosexuals. Some folks just don’t want you to get married. Rosie O’Donnell has much more chance of being physically harmed by an adherent of radical Islam than by a Christian who doesn’t want her to get married.
Next, of course, is abortion, an issue that is certainly important to some people, but probably overwhelmingly important to the mostly young, female audience of “The View”.
This issue has long been the most divisive issue between Evangelicals and so-called “soccer moms.” Folks like Rosie truly believe that if the religious right gets its way on this issue, it is tantamount to taking the vote away from women. This is utter nonsense. Even if Roe v. Wade is overturned abortion becomes a matter for the states. There is no doubt that abortion will still be available in this country. You may just have to travel across state lines to get one.
So again, let’s compare and contrast. In Islamic nations, abortion is so forbidden that a woman can be punished by death for having one (probably by stoning or some other horrible medieval method).
Last time I checked, the religious right did not want the punishment for abortion to be execution. So if Rosie wanted an abortion in Pakistan, she would be dead. If Roe v.Wade was overturned and she wanted an abortion she could go to New York. Nothing would happen to her at all.
The Jihadists are willing to kill Rosie here in America, in order to stop her from having the freedom to get an abortion. According to them, if Rosie is going to continue to support things like abortion, she needs to die.
To be fair, in the past there have been a few nuts on the far right, who did bomb abortion clinics, but they were condemned and ostracized by the vast majority of Evangelicals and other very religious individuals in this nation.
It is typical for those who are extremists, on both side of the political spectrum, to have unjustified and overblown fears of those who disagree with their extreme views, even if those individuals are relative moderates.
Rosie is one of these extremists, and therefore has unjustified fears, which she uses to create a moral equivalency between the peaceful, yet politically powerful religious right and the murderous Islamo-facists.
Because she is so far to the left, she truly believes that President Bush is a religious extremist who wants to turn America into some kind of theocracy.
Yes, the President is a Christian. Yes, he is far more involved in his faith than I would ever care to be. Yes, he comes to many decisions based on his understanding of right versus wrong. Some of his moral views were likely formed by his understanding of the teachings of Jesus Christ. But we all do that to a certain extent. Where do you think the Golden Rule came from? Much of how the majority of decent Americans, even non-religious ones, live their lives comes from Judaeo-Christian teachings and we don’t even realize it.
As for the enthusiastic applause from the audience of "The View" for O’Donnell’s boneheaded comments, it’s due to one of three things.
The first possibility is that these folks admire Rosie so much that they are willing to clap and agree with anything Ms. O’Donnell says. That’s just scary.
Another possibility is that roughly half of the largely female audience of “The View” shares Rosie’s extreme view and votes accordingly. This is a bit closer to what I believe to be the truth, but I think that even this is a bit too simplistic an explanation.
In reality, I think that much of “The View’s” audience is simply uniformed. Not only about current events and history, but about the threat posed by Islamo-facism in general.
Don’t get me wrong: far too many Americans are uninformed, but “The View’s” audience seems to be especially uninformed and I have no idea why.
For those who don’t remember, this is not the first time that one of “The View’s” female hosts has said something colossally stupid and was rewarded with applause. Who can forget this gem, which came from the rarely closed mouth of former co-host Star Jones:
In her warped view, the War on Terror was all about Bush and Bin Laden fighting over penis size.
"You know what? At some point, one of these men has to put it back in his pants and zip up the zipper." . . . .
She even suggested that Bush hold some kind of talk with the man behind 9/11:
"I won't trust him, but anything that gives me the opportunity to seek peace, I would at least check it out. . . . People make deals with the devil all the time. We make deals with people we don't like."
What conclusion are we supposed to reach based on “The View's” co-hosts obvious idiocy, and its audience’s positive reaction to these comments?
If there are typical viewers of the show, demographically speaking, and they are getting their news and shaping their opinions based on what people like Rosie and Star Jones say, then we have good reason to worry.
My message to those individuals: grow up, get informed, turn off “The View” and turn on the news.
Rosie is fortunate that those who consistently battle against the far left's moral equivalency have a far more accurate moral compass than their opponents.
We believe that Rosie O’Donnell and her ilk are misguided and have no clue as to how to fight the War on Terror. But they themselves are not nearly as dangerous as suicide bombers and the other extremists who dance in the street and shout death threats at the Pope.
They will kill lesbians and Evangelicals alike without blinking an eye. Those who are clear thinkers know that you’re not dangerous Rosie, you’re just really, really dumb.
Posted by Falling Panda at 12:15 AM
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
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It’s a tremendously simple political equation--the voting equivalent of falling off of a log. It goes like this:
There has not been a successful terrorist attack on our nation since September 11, 2001.
Democrats have consistently gone on record proclaiming their opposition to the programs that the President has put in place in order to protect this country from terrorism.
How can any logical person cast a vote, which would put those Democrats in a position where they can repeal those laws?
The two indisputable facts that lead to this equation’s solution are not debatable.
Furthermore, even if you are of the belief that our involvement in Iraq has made us less safe here at home and created more terrorists around the world (a notion which cannot really be accurately assessed by the way, at least not until the next terrorist census comes out), then that’s all the more reason to keep the Bush safeguards such as The Patriot Act and NSA wiretapping in place and the detainment facility at Guantanamo Bay open.
But if voters insist on punishing the President by taking control of Congress away from his party, even if it results in the eventual crippling of the executive branch to fight the War on Terror, they had better have a very good reason.
Again, the plethora of mistakes made in Iraq would be a good reason, but only if the opposition party had some sort of serious alternative plan. They don’t.
Recently Democrats and their allies in the left-wing media have accused President Bush and the GOP of attempting to scare people into supporting them by reminding people of the terrorist threat facing our country.
This is, of course, tantamount to pretending that no threat exists, a difficult argument to make based on what we know about the size and scope of the terrorists' most recent foiled attempt to blow up a number of American passenger planes last month.
It is also hypocritical. While Democrats accuse the president of fear-mongering out of one side of their mouths, they accuse him of not doing enough to keep us safe out of the other.
They scoff at the comparisons conservatives have made between the cut-and-run faction of the Democratic party, (which would assume almost all of the leadership positions in the House Of Representatives if Democrats pick up the 15 seats that they need), with the European leaders who sought to appease Hitler as well as those who balked at confronting the confederacy during the Civil War. Yet when asked why such a comparison is not accurate, their answer is not a historical lesson in the nuances of politics of the mid 1800’s or a defense of the actions taken by Neville Chamberlain, but rather a diatribe on how George W. Bush is trying to scare Americans in to voting for him.
The Democrats' new strategy suddenly appears a bit desperate, as if they were caught off guard when the GOP actually decided to start campaigning.
Even more striking however are the issues that the Democrats will be unable to use in their attempts to bludgeon the president.
The economy is chugging along and gas prices are falling.
The Democrats had to close the door on their “culture of corruption” issue as soon as Capitol Hill police opened the door to William Jefferson’s freezer. And it turns out that “Plamegate” was little more than a fairy-tale spun by Joe Wilson himself and kept alive by wishful thinking at the New York Times. Karl Rove is still waiting for his apology, by the way.
By contrast, Republicans have not made nearly enough of how the leadership of Congress will change if Democrats do manage to take over.
Most of the Democratic candidates running for the seats which the Dem’s hope to pick up are relative moderates. But the long-serving representatives, who will assume leadership positions and committee chairmanships in the event of a Democratic majority, are ideologically as far away from the American mainstream as can be.
Lifelong uber-liberal politicians such as Barney Frank, Charlie Rangel, John Conyers and Nancy Pelosi promise strict oversight on an administration they claim is running roughshod over the Constitution.
But in addition to endless investigations of the administration, which are most likely little more than retaliation for the GOP investigations of the Clintons, their legislative aim is a return to policies which most Americans rejected at the end of the Carter presidency such as higher taxes, increased regulation of business and a foreign policy which seeks to negotiate, equivocate and coexist rather than one which will do whatever it takes to eliminate threats to our nation.
This very group's vehement opposition to Ronald Reagan’s aggressive anti-Soviet policies of the 1980’s--policies which resulted in the end of the Cold War--should serve as a reminder of how wrong those on the far left are when it comes to the most important issues of our time.
Let’s recap. No terrorist attack since 9/11. Over 5,000 terrorists captured or killed since The War on Terror commenced.
Democrats want to take away the tools, which the Bush Administration has used to prevent attacks and to capture and kill a significant portion of those 5,000.
Most people don’t go into the voting booth and cast their ballot based on the potential make-up of the House and Senate. However, the Democrats want this round of elections to be a referendum on President Bush. It is only right, therefore, that we examine the successes of this administration in addition to its failures. That is the only way to decide whether a Congress that will dismantle his successful anti-terror policies serves the national interest.
Posted by Falling Panda at 5:28 PM
Thursday, September 07, 2006
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Newt Gingrich was always smarter than Bill Clinton when it came to policy, but there was a huge charisma deficit which lead to his downfall. I'm afraid that this deficit still exsists, but that makes his writing no less important.
As his old adversary defends his administration's incompetance in regards to terrorism Newt is the one looking ahead and trying to fix the mistakes in this new type of war rather than arguing over how to abandon it.
Bush and Lincoln
Echoes of the past in today's strategic mistakes.
BY NEWT GINGRICH
Thursday, September 7, 2006 12:01 a.m. EDT
"The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. . . . As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves."
Annual message to Congress
Dec. 1, 1862
WASHINGTON--Five years have passed since the horrific attack on our American homeland, and, still, there is one serious, undeniable fact we have yet to confront: We are, today, not where we wanted to be and nowhere near where we need to be.
In April of 1861, in response to the firing on Fort Sumter, President Lincoln called for 75,000 volunteers to serve for 90 days. Lincoln had greatly underestimated the challenge of preserving the Union. No one imagined that what would become the Civil War would last four years and take the lives of 620,000 Americans.
By the summer of 1862, with thousands of Americans already dead or wounded and the hopes of a quick resolution to the war all but abandoned, three political factions had emerged. There were those who thought the war was too hard and would have accepted defeat by negotiating the end of the United States by allowing the South to secede. Second were those who urged staying the course by muddling through with a cautious military policy and a desire to be "moderate and reasonable" about Southern property rights, including slavery.
We see these first two factions today. The Kerry-Gore-Pelosi-Lamont bloc declares the war too hard, the world too dangerous. They try to find some explainable way to avoid reality while advocating return to "normalcy," and promoting a policy of weakness and withdrawal abroad.
Most government officials constitute the second wing, which argues the system is doing the best it can and that we have to "stay the course"--no matter how unproductive. But, after being exposed in the failed response to Hurricane Katrina, it will become increasingly difficult for this wing to keep explaining the continuing failures of the system.
Just consider the following: Osama bin Laden is still at large. Afghanistan is still insecure. Iraq is still violent. North Korea and Iran are still building nuclear weapons and missiles. Terrorist recruiting is still occurring in the U.S., Canada, Great Britain and across the planet.
By late summer, 1862, Lincoln agonizingly concluded that a third faction had the right strategy for victory. This group's strategy demanded reorganizing everything as needed, intensifying the war, and bringing the full might of the industrial North to bear until the war was won.
The first and greatest lesson of the last five years parallels what Lincoln came to understand. The dangers are greater, the enemy is more determined, and victory will be substantially harder than we had expected in the early days after the initial attack. Despite how painful it would prove to be, Lincoln chose the road to victory. President Bush today finds himself in precisely the same dilemma Lincoln faced 144 years ago. With American survival at stake, he also must choose. His strategies are not wrong, but they are failing. And they are failing for three reasons.
(1) They do not define the scale of the emerging World War III, between the West and the forces of militant Islam, and so they do not outline how difficult the challenge is and how big the effort will have to be. (2) They do not define victory in this larger war as our goal, and so the energy, resources and intensity needed to win cannot be mobilized. (3) They do not establish clear metrics of achievement and then replace leaders, bureaucrats and bureaucracies as needed to achieve those goals.
To be sure, Mr. Bush understands that we cannot ignore our enemies; they are real. He knows that an enemy who believes in religiously sanctioned suicide-bombing is an enemy who, with a nuclear or biological weapon, is a mortal threat to our survival as a free country. The analysis Mr. Bush offers the nation--before the Joint Session on Sept. 20, 2001, in his 2002 State of the Union, in his 2005 Second Inaugural--is consistently correct. On each occasion, he outlines the threat, the moral nature of the conflict and the absolute requirement for victory.
Unfortunately, the great bureaucracies Mr. Bush presides over (but does not run) have either not read his speeches or do not believe in his analysis. The result has been a national security performance gap that we must confront if we are to succeed in winning this rising World War III.
We have to be honest about how big this problem is and then design new, bolder and more profound strategies to secure American national security in a very dangerous 21st century. Unless we, like Lincoln, think anew, we cannot set the nation on a course for victory. Here are some initial steps:
First, the president should address a Joint Session of Congress to explain to the country the urgency of the threat of losing millions of people in one or more cities if our enemies find a way to deliver weapons of mass murder to American soil. He should further communicate the scale of the anti-American coalition, the clarity of their desire to destroy America, and the requirement that we defeat them. He should then make clear to the world that a determined American people whose very civilization is at stake will undertake the measures needed to prevail over our enemies. While desiring the widest possible support, we will not compromise our self-defense in order to please our critics.
Then he should announce an aggressively honest review of what has not worked in the first five years of the war. Based upon the findings he should initiate a sweeping transformation of the White House's national security apparatus. The current hopelessly slow and inefficient interagency system should be replaced by a new metrics-based and ruthlessly disciplined integrated system of accountability, with clear timetables and clear responsibilities.
The president should insist upon creating new aggressive entrepreneurial national security systems that replace (rather than reform) the current failing bureaucracies. For example, the Agency for International Development has been a disaster in both Afghanistan and Iraq. The president should issue new regulations where possible and propose new legislation where necessary. The old systems cannot be allowed to continue to fail without consequence. Those within the bureaucracies who cannot follow the president's directives should be compelled to leave.
Following this initiative, the president should propose a dramatic and deep overhaul of homeland security grounded in metrics-based performance to create a system capable of meeting the seriousness of the threat. The leaders of the new national security and homeland security organizations should be asked what they need to win this emerging World War III, and then the budget should be developed. We need a war budget, but we currently have an OMB-driven, pseudo-war budget. The goal of victory, ultimately, will lead to a dramatically larger budget, which will lead to a serious national debate. We can win this argument, but we first have to make it.
Congress should immediately pass the legislation sent by the president yesterday to meet the requirements of the Supreme Court's Hamdan decision. More broadly, it should pass an act that recognizes that we are entering World War III and serves notice that the U.S. will use all its resources to defeat our enemies--not accommodate, understand or negotiate with them, but defeat them.
Because the threat of losing millions of Americans is real, Congress should hold blunt, no-holds-barred oversight hearings on what is and is not working. Laws should be changed to shift from bureaucratic to entrepreneurial implementation throughout the national security and homeland security elements of government.
Beyond our shores, we must commit to defeating the enemies of freedom in Iraq, starting with doubling the size of the Iraqi military and police forces. We should put Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia on notice that any help going to the enemies of the Iraqi people will be considered hostile acts by the U.S. In southern Lebanon, the U.S. should insist on disarming Hezbollah, emphasizing it as the first direct defeat of Syria and Iran--thus restoring American prestige in the region while undermining the influence of the Syrian and Iranian dictatorships.
Further, we should make clear our goal of replacing the repressive dictatorships in North Korea, Iran and Syria, whose aim is to do great harm to the American people and our allies. Our first steps should be the kind of sustained aggressive strategy of replacement which Ronald Reagan directed brilliantly in Poland, and ultimately led to the collapse of the Soviet empire.
The result of this effort would be borders that are controlled, ports that are secure and an enemy that understands the cost of going up against the full might of the U.S. No enemy can stand against a determined American people. But first we must commit to victory. These steps are the first on a long and difficult road to victory, but are necessary to win the future.
Posted by Falling Panda at 5:54 PM