Wednesday, September 30, 2009


My daughter showed me this youtube video, which is pretty good:


Bret Stephens in the WSJ suggests that the "evil neocons" are actually the real foreign policy “realists”--in that they are able to focus on...reality, instead of all the hoping, wishing, and dreaming that is essential to the utopian fantasies of the left:

The other day I was asked by a writer for a mainstream French newspaper to say something about the "return" of the neoconservatives. His thesis seemed to be that the shambles of Barack Obama's foreign policy had, after only nine months, made what was thought to be the most discredited wing of an ostensibly brain-dead conservative movement relevant again. And France—no longer straining at the sight of Michelle Obama shopping in Paris's 6th arrondissement—is taking notice.

My answer was that the neocons are back because Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Kim Jong Il and Vladimir Putin never went away. A star may have shone in the east the day Barack Obama became president. But these three kings, at least, have yet to proffer the usual gifts of gold and incense and myrrh....

All this must, at some level, come as a surprise to an administration so deeply in love with itself. "I am well aware of the expectations that accompany my presidency around the world," Mr. Obama told the U.N.'s General Assembly last week with his usual modesty. He added that those expectations were "rooted in hope—the hope that real change is possible, and the hope that America will be a leader in bringing about such change."

Yet what sounds like "hope" in, say, Toronto or Barcelona tends to come across as fecklessness in Warsaw and Jerusalem. In Moscow and Tehran, it reads like credulity—and an opportunity to exploit the U.S. at a moment of economic weakness and political self-infatuation.

For those much-scorned neocons, none of this comes as a surprise. Neoconservatives generally take the view that the internal character of a regime usually predicts the nature of its foreign policy. Governments that are answerable to their own people and accountable to a rule of law tend to respect the rights of their neighbors, honor their treaty commitments, and abide by the international rules of the road. By contrast, regimes that prey on their own citizens are likely to prey on their neighbors as well. Their word is the opposite of their bond.

That's why neocons have no faith in any deals or "grand bargains" the U.S. might sign with North Korea or Iran over their nuclear programs: Cheating is in the DNA of both regimes, and the record is there to prove it. Nor do neocons put much stock in the notion that there's a "reset" button with the Kremlin. Russia is the quintessential spoiler state, seeking its advantage in America's troubles at home and abroad. Ditto for Syria, which has perfected the art of taking credit for solving problems of its own creation.

Where neocons do put their faith is in American power, not just military or economic power but also as an instrument of moral and political suasion. Disarmament? The last dictator to relinquish his nuclear program voluntarily was Libya's Moammar Gadhafi, who did so immediately following Saddam Hussein's capture. Democratization? Contrary to current conventional wisdom, democracy is often imposed, or at least facilitated, by U.S. pressure—in the Philippines, in the Balkans and, yes, in Iraq. Human rights? Anwar Ibrahim, the beleaguered Malaysian opposition leader, told me last week that "the only country that can stand up" to abusive regimes is the United States. "If they know the administration is taking a soft stance [on human rights], they will go on a rampage."

And, it isn't just in the realm of foreign policy that neoconservatives are much more in touch with the real world:
...Robert Smith at American Thinker believes that the left is in real crisis, facing not a temporary electoral setback in Europe but an existential crisis; that it is self-destructing at such a rate that the very swiftness of its collapse threatens to be a catastrophe in its own right.
Less than a year into his presidency, Barack Obama’s world grows bleaker. Liberalism’s world is bleaker. At home and abroad, liberalism, as advanced by the President, is failing. Are we witnessing the beginnings of another historic event, loosely comparable to the fall of communism twenty years ago? Now the fall of liberalism? … Overseas, the nation’s enemies, who only a short time ago feared us, now scheme to overtly or surreptitiously challenge us. Our allies in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, some of whom resent our power, must confront an ugly question: What happens in a world absent sufficient projections of American power?

Smith isn’t alone in worrying about the frenetic pace at which events are moving. And it is not the change but the rate at which it is accelerating that really raises concerns. Some months ago it became evident that blunders were piling on so fast, and they were of such enormity that they fed each other, like a patient facing multiple organ failure. The Left was self-medicating itself so catastrophically, and smashing up so many things so quickly that there simply wasn’t enough outrage in the world to even keep track of it.

European socialism was fantasy viable only while the US successfully performed the role of global system administrator. With Barack Obama crashing subsystem after subsystem, the socialist appendages are powering down. Without free energy from the capitalist system they despise, socialism is indeed doomed. What no one anticipated was how quickly the end might come. It would be really interesting if the key problem in the next few years turned out to be not about how to defeat the left, but how to survive the maelstrom left by its sinking. There is some sense in the Left that things are no longer the same. But that’s a mistake. They have never changed.

If you listen at all to the MSM, you might begin to think that neoconservativesm is either in dissaray, dead and abandoned by all its former adherents. With the death of the great Irving Kristol, the Times Online proclaims the "end of the neocon era."

They wish.

Neoconservatism has been pronounced dead by its opponents many times in the decades since its ideas were first formulated. The reasons tha these rumors of its death are constantly exaggerated is due to the fact that the philosophy underlying neoconservative policies is extremely threatening to today's postmodern political left.

Today's left is a nothing more than the hallow shell of what was once known as "liberalism"; and it is held together by the empty and meaningless rhetoric of postmodern intellectual nonsense, otherwise known as political correctness and multiculturalism (or, cultural relativity).

Neoconservatism as an intellectual theory actually arose from the observation in the 1960's that classical liberalism had been hijacked by the left and its essence literally reconstructed to suit the needs of dead-end socialists and communists, finally beginning to realize that the jig was up for them.

All over the world it was becoming more and more obvious that political and social collectivism was an abject failure. Wherever these ideologies were implemented, their policies led to intractable poverty and economic misery; and inevitably the economic policies were accompanied by oppression, tyranny, and the crushing of the human spirit.

I have discussed elsewhere how the recent revival of socialism and its collectivist/totalitarian agenda in the late 20th and early 21st century was made possible by the adoption of postmodern epistemology, rhetoric and politics by western intellectual elites:

The rise of neoconservatism in the latter part of the 20th century represents the only modern intellectual counter and the only known antidote to the infection of postmodernism and its resultant toxic effects on philosophy, politics and rehtoric.

In order to succeed in undoing and undermining the clear and unambiguous evidence of socialism's and communism's utter human toxicity, the totalitarians of the political left had to undermine nothing less than reality, reason, and truth.

Furthermore, they had to deconstruct and invalidate human consciousness, making sure that the everyone understood that the only apparatus available to humans for perceiving reality--the mind--was completely unreliable, and that the evidence of the senses must therefore be discounted. This intellectual strategy has resulted in a pervasive moral and cultural relativism; and an intellectual nihilism that has permeated all aspects of society and intellectual thought.

Words and language are redefined to mean whatever is wanted/needed in the moment to persuade; history is deconstructed--ostensibly to expose it's lies, but really to render it meaningless and irrelevant to the present; and the ideas and values that are the foundation of Western Civilization are mocked and shown by postmodern "logic" to be no better than any other random ideas.

For the left, freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose--and not much different from slavery anyway; democracy is just as much a fraud as tyranny; that which was always considered the good, is really just as evil as evil; and so on. Twentieth century postmodernists thus set themselves up as culturally and morally superior to all other humans in history, and with the postmodern relativistic advantage, they could pass judgement on everyone and everything. Thus from the superior postmodern perspective, there was nothing of value to learn from a slave-holding--and clearly imperfect-- Thomas Jefferson; there is no moral superiority in a system that strives toward increasing individual human freedom and dignity compared to a system that doesn't even recognize the rights of the individual. There is no difference between right and wrong; good and evil--all are suspect, all are hypcritical, all are imperfect; and thus all such concepts are rendered irrelevant.

By disgarding reason and reality; by abandoning the past and embracing moral and cultural relativism, the left has brought us to this place where we are morally and physically paralyzed. We place greater value on beautiful words and rhetoric than on behavior; what is said, instead of what is done; we seem unable to distinguish between the deliberate targeting and killing of innocents and the accidental and unavoidable killing of innocents despite herculean efforts to avoid it; between waging war to give people a chance at freedom and democracy; and waging war for domination and imperialism; between standing up for what is right and accepting the consequences, and abandoning one's values and surrendering with "honor" to the scum of the earth.

Do our current leaders have the moral will to actually win the war in Afghanistan now that the morally bankrupt left is calling the shots? I sincerely doubt it. Even as I write this, our Dear Leader is heading off to lobby for the Chicago Olympics and can't be bothered to meet or discuss strategy with the General he appointed to oversee the war . This more than anything highlights the ridiculous priorities and broken moral compass of the political left.

Yet, these are the same political ideologues who have established themselves as the arbiters of moral behavior by enabling and encouraging amoral and immoral behavior; of being "reality-based" without the necessity of having to acknowledge reality; of speaking "truth" to power, without being capable of recognizing truth (isn't all truth relative, after all?).

Neoconservative philosophy represents the beginnings of a neo-rationalism that just might be able to offer new solutions for the intractable national and international problems that have spilled into the 21st century. Neoconservativism is realism. not utopian fantasy. Promoting and standing up with the Democratic and free regimes of the world is far more reality-based and consistent with our national interest than the bizarre and unrealistic high school rhetoric of "universal nuclear disarmament"--which was a pipe dream in the late 1960's when my own high school debate team passionately argued, "Resolved: Nuclear weapons should be controlled by an international organzation."

I like to think that I've grown up since those days and come to understand something about human nature and the realities of the world; as well as the persistence of evil. To watch my own country descend into such histrionic adolescent fantasies and wishful thinking is rather painful.

I am proud to consider myself a neoconservative, which I find to be the only political philosophy that faces the unpleasant realities of the world unflinchingly, but at the same time encourages the optimization of human freedom around the globe as the best means to promote continued American progress and our national security.

By proudly reclaiming the history of Western Civilization, which has been the history of the triumph of human liberty over tyranny; built slowly upon great idea after great idea; and which always strives for the good, but is never perfect; neoconservatism remains the only antidote for anti-reality, anti-mind, and anti-truth postmodern leftist relativism.

[Cartoons by Henry Payne]

Monday, September 28, 2009


The evidence is accumulating...and all anyone ever had to do was to delve into his political associations:
No doubt, some will dismiss the newly revealed connections between the Obama administration, Patrick Gaspard, Bertha Lewis, and ACORN as "guilt by association." Yet it seems to me that the evidence points to something more significant than that. We are talking about a persistent and shared political-ideological alliance between President Obama and the complex of community, labor, and party organizations controlled by ACORN. (See especially "Life of the New Party" for more on New Party ideology.) Again, the Gaspard issue is new and needs further investigation and consideration. Yet preliminary indications are that the Gaspard-ACORN-Bertha Lewis-New Party-WFP-SEIU ties are significant, and tell us something disturbing about the political ideology and intentions of President Obama. In particular, the connection between Gaspard, Lewis, the New Party, and the Working Families Party ought to draw our attention back to what may ultimately be the most important Obama-ACORN tie of all, his time with Chicago’s New Party.

Read it all. You can tell a lot about a man (or woman) by looking at the company he keeps.

And, I would like to point out that "keeps" is in the present tense, not the past tense. These people from the "past" still surround Obama now that he is POTUS. This is not a coincidence, and Kurtz is absolutely correct that this information is incredibly significant, whether the legacy media decide they will look at it or not.

Why? Because it tells us where Obama is really trying to take this country, and what his real agenda is. Nothing is more relevant than that.

Read Kurtz's other articles ("Something New Here," and "Life of the New Party.") on Obama and his questionable associations; associations that, when taken as a whole, are not only extremely revealing, but should be of concern to all Americans--and should have been something that was explored in minute and repetitive detail before this guy was elected to any position of importance.

Now, ask yourself why this simple investigative journalist task was never done (except by Kurtz) and why it never made big news? Because this is precisely the kind of important information that is needed to determine the character of a man.

I never attribute to malice, what can be explained by sheer stupidity; but in this case, I am beginning to believe that there was a lot of malice aforethought by a lot of people in order to hide, obscure and/or delete any information that might dent the pre-fabricated and carefully polished image of the new messiah.

Or, I could just be paranoid.

I guess the truth will be apparent when we arrive at Obama's final destination.


From Mark Steyn's column this week, "Dislike Obama? You Must Be Racist":
Melissa Harris-Lacewell, professor of African-American studies at Princeton, was invited on to National Public Radio to expound on the use of “racial code words” in “the current opposition to health care reform.” For example, explained professor Harris-Lacewell, “language of personal responsibility is often a code language used against poor and minority communities.”

“Personal responsibility” is racial code language? Phew, thank goodness America is belatedly joining Canada and Europe in all but abolishing the concept.

“Code language” is code language for “total bollocks.” “Code word” is a code word for “I’m inventing what you really meant to say because the actual quote doesn’t quite do the job for me.” “Small government”? Racist code words! “Non-confiscatory taxes”? Likewise. “Individual liberty”? Don’t even go there! To an incisive NPR racism analyst, the elderly gentleman telling his congressman “I’m very concerned by what I’ve heard about wait times for MRIs in Canada” is really saying “I’m unable to overcome my deep-seated racial anxieties about the sexual prowess of black males, especially now they’re giving prime-time press conferences every night.” With interpreters like professor Harris-Lacewell on the prowl, I’m confident 95 per cent of Webster’s will eventually be ruled “code language.”

For years now, pop psychology and its gurus have mesmerized the culture at large. All their self-help tenets have percolated through K-12 educational curricula; and been accepted wholeheartedly by the cultural elite of Hollywood and the intellectual elite of academia.

The triumvarate of contradictions that claims to be based on "scientific" psychology includes the hyping of (1) self-esteem (increasing your self-worth without having to achieve anything); (2) hope (achieving your goals without any real effort) and (3) victimhood (it's not your fault that you haven't achieved anything or made any effort). See here for more discussion.

These three fundamental axioms of leftist thought have risen to prominence in our society as the denigration of the concept of personal responsibility has taken hold. In fact, as you can see from Steyn's column above, the very use of the words have become politically incorrect--racist, even--primarily because personal responsibility is not compatible with the leftist definition of those three fundamental axioms.

After several decades, the intellectual impoverishment brought about by faux self-esteem, fairy-tale utopian fantasies, and eternal victimhood--all pseudoscientific psychological deceptions designed to maintain dependence on leftist ideology-- are now becoming apparent:
Over a 20-year span beginning in the early 1970s, the average SAT score fell by 35 points. But in that same period, the contingent of college-bound seniors who boasted an A or B average jumped from 28% to an astonishing 83%, as teachers felt increasing pressure to adopt more "supportive" grading policies. Tellingly, in a 1989 study of comparative math skills among students in eight nations, Americans ranked lowest in overall competence, Koreans highest — but when researchers asked the students how good they thought they were at math, the results were exactly opposite: Americans highest, Koreans lowest. Meanwhile, data from 1999's omnibus Third International Mathematics and Science Study, ranking 12th-graders from 23 nations, put U.S. students in 20th place, besting only South Africa, Lithuania and Cyprus.

Still, the U.S. keeps dressing its young in their emperors' new egos, passing them on to the next set of empowering curricula. If you teach at the college level, as I do, at some point you will be confronted with a student seeking redress over the grade you gave him because "I'm pre-med!" Not until such students reach med school do they encounter truly inelastic standards: a comeuppance for them but a reprieve for those who otherwise might find ourselves anesthetized beneath their second-rate scalpel.

The larger point is that society has embraced such concepts as self-esteem and confidence despite scant evidence that they facilitate positive outcomes. The work of psychologists Roy Baumeister and Martin Seligman suggests that often, high self-worth is actually a marker for negative behavior, as found in sociopaths and drug kingpins.

We see the people who have inhaled this "psychology-lite" everywhere around us, and in all levels of society. Particularly we can notice it in the elites of Hollywood and Academia; who alternate between acting out their narcissistically empowered superiority -- demanding to be noticed, admired and loved (by you); and playing the narcissistically empowered victim -- demanding their inalienable rights and priveleges (at your expense).

But the real victims of all this hype are our children, because these foolish notions, without a scintilla of scientific evidence and only becaue it makes some people feel good about themselves, have become the pop psychology dogma of public policy in education; and the corollary of their implementation is an equal and opposite de-emphasis on taking personal responsibility for one's actions and behaviors and accepting the consequences, both good and bad. One's character is not only determined by successes in life, but by how failures are dealt with. Self-esteem is the by-product of negotiating those successes and failures with integrity and honesty. "Hope" is meaningless unless it escapes the land of fantasy and conforms with reality; and victimhood should only be a transient state that motivates a person to change behavior--not a celebration or a way of life.

For many on the left side of the political spectrum, the concept of "personal responsibility" is inextricably linked to conservative moral principles; to business success and capitalism; and to the bugaboo of collectivists everywhere, individualism. It is no secret that the political left has idealized certain social and political systems because they suppressed the individual and elevated the state, insisting that individuals had no right to exist for their own selves, but only to serve others.

Those on the left mistakenly believe that it is individualism and "evil" capitalism that is linked to narcissistic behavior. But as I have explained in previous posts, there is a flip side to "selfish" or "grandiose" narcissism-- and that is narcissism rooted in idealism, rather than selfishness; or "idealistic" narcissism (discussed at some length here if you are interested). This second kind of narcissism (the flip side of the coin, if you will) is less obvious to an observer, since it is disguised with a veneer of concern for others. But it is equally—if not more—destructive and causative of human suffering, decay, death and misery. Both kinds of narcissism are a plague on the world; and both are well-traveled avenues for limiting freedom and imposing tyranny. The "grandiose" narcissism is the stimulus for individual tyrants, while the "idealistic" narcissism leads to groups imposing their will on others.

The idealistic narcissist is invested in utopian fantasies. Their self-esteem is derived from the power they feel in controlling the lives of others, and they desperately need to maintain a constant supply of "victims" they can pretend to champion. In general, they are extremely resistant to taking responsibility for their own behavior or the implementation of their utopian dreams--all of which have been emotionally catastrophic for the individuals in the system. Is it any wonder that the political left identifies personal responsibility as a dangerous and radical concept? In a world where personal responsibility and accountability for one's behavior is expected, they themselves would have to answer to that thing we call "reality."

This they cannot and will not do.

Hence they have constructed a whole system ("political correctness") to stigmatize and intimidate those who believe that self-esteem must be earned by achievement and is dependent on one's choices and actions; that "hope and change" come about not by wishing and lovely rhetoric, but by doing; and that your current bad situation may not be (entirely) your own fault, but by constantly externalizing blame for that situation, you miss opportunities to make necessary changes in your own behavior that keep you down. By taking responsibility for your own life, you stop waiting to be rescued and do what you have to do to rescue yourself. You can stay a "victim" and wallow in "victimhood", but the essence of maturity and adulthood is taking charge of your own life and not letting others dictate who you should be, or what you should do.

Unhealthy narcissism (yes, a certain amount of narcissism not only can be healthy, it is essential to function optimally in life) is encouraged by the "self-esteem gurus" in education, whose nonsense continues to reinforce the inappropriate grandiosity of young children by facilitating a faux self-esteem; just as the radical environmentalists and politically correct, kumbayah types (among other groups) continue to reinforce the malignant selflessness that comes from fervently believing in the perfectibility of human beings.

Between the two influences unleashed on the vulnerable minds of our children, is it any surprise that by the time they get to college, kids are either dysfunctional, self-absorbed narcissists; naively malignant do-gooders; or (at best) completely and irrevocably cynical about the pervasive indoctrination and anti-intellectualism they have been subjected to in their educational careers?

As this article from the LA Times says somewhat understatedly, "Gen Y's ego trip is likely to take a nasty turn". Yes, we are already seeing the consequences on a daily basis.

Welcome to the Golden Age of Narcissism! Please check all personal responsibility, common sense and reality at the door before entering....

Sunday, September 27, 2009


Rich Lowry:
We are experiencing a festival of liberal hypocrisy on the Afghan war, as all the left-wing doves who touted the war as absolutely essential for years back off now that it's no longer a politically convenient war....

Read it all.

But we always knew it would come to this, didn't we? The left has no real principles except the desire for power; no real moral compass except for spinning moral relativism...they waft around like feathers in the ever-changing political winds. They were "willing to use any club with which to beat the Bush administration and to trumpet the amazing qualities of Barack Obama."

And like the messiah they adore, they will vote "present" on Afghanistan, then shrug their shoulders, ignore the advice of their Generals, and then say, "What more could we do?".


Saturday, September 26, 2009


Anne Bayefsky:
...[W]hen President Obama addressed the General Assembly and Security Council he already knew that Iran was ignoring international standards, and its latest violations endangered international peace and security more than ever before. And yet he deliberately refused to put Iran on the agenda of the Council summit — the same Council that he claimed bore responsibility for responding to such threats.

President Obama knew that if the magnitude of the Iranian threat were revealed yesterday, the emptiness of his resolution would have been embarrassingly obvious and his cover blown. In public, at the highest levels of the U.N, he heralded generalities as significant. In private, he was petitioning lower levels of the U.N. to act on startling specifics of the Iranian threat.

Why did the president not present this same evidence to the Security Council, the body with “the authority and the responsibility to respond”? Why did he not challenge world leaders to deal with the same Iranian threat that he privately was pressing upon U.N. bureaucrats?

There is only one possible answer: President Obama does not have the political will to do what it takes to prevent an Iranian nuclear bomb.

Is it really a lack of political will? Or is it political grandiosity and malignant narcissism playing itself out on a world stage?

I do not happen to believe that Obama will do what is necessary to protect this country from the the Iranian threat. The only "evil" he has ever been able to internalize is that of the "social injustice" of capitalism and America, taught to him all through his life by his mother and father figures like Frank Marshall Davis and Jeremiah Wright.

Psychologically, he can't protect us, even if he wanted to. He is bound up in and obsessed with his own personal, unresolved conflicts and caught up in a destructive repetition compulsion; and having a Daddy who was interested in protecting little Barry's world is not something he can relate to.

All the world's his stage now--a stage he can use to act out those malignantly narcissistic defects manifested in his cold grandiosity and in his "selfless" devotion to pursuing what the left insists on calling "social justice"; but which in the cold light of reality always turns out to be the pursuit of power over others .

Remember Obama's really tough response to North Korea's missile launch?
North Korea’s development and proliferation of ballistic missile technology pose a threat to the northeast Asian region and to international peace and security. The launch today of a Taepo-dong 2 missile was a clear violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1718, which expressly prohibits North Korea from conducting ballistic missile-related activities of any kind. With this provocative act, North Korea has ignored its international obligations, rejected unequivocal calls for restraint, and further isolated itself from the community of nations.
We will immediately consult with our allies in the region, including Japan and the Republic of Korea, and members of the U.N. Security Council to bring this matter before the Council. I urge North Korea to abide fully by the resolutions of the U.N. Security Council and to refrain from further provocative actions.

The man is all talk and aggressive inaction when it comes to national security. Other leaders have noticed and have begun to mock his childish agenda--even if our own media haven't:
“President Obama dreams of a world without weapons … but right in front of us two countries are doing the exact opposite.

“Iran since 2005 has flouted five security council resolutions. North Korea has been defying council resolutions since 1993.

“I support the extended hand of the Americans, but what good has proposals for dialogue brought the international community? More uranium enrichment and declarations by the leaders of Iran to wipe a UN member state off the map,” he continued, referring to Israel.

The sharp-tongued French leader even implied that Mr Obama’s resolution 1887 had used up valuable diplomatic energy.

“If we have courage to impose sanctions together it will lend viability to our commitment to reduce our own weapons and to making a world without nuke weapons,” he said.

Mr Sarkozy has previously called the US president’s disarmament crusade “naive.”

He has enough political "will" to support the ranting Zelaya (yet another Chavez wannabe south of us) and, interestingly, always seems to come down on the side of those who dislike and even hate his own country. Obama needs to stop dreaming and wake up to the reality in front of him...but pointing out something like that to a person acting out his own personal psychopathology and grandiose fantasies on a world stage, while little children are singing praises to his wonderfulness and the left is reinforcing and enabling and excusing that gradiosity, would be therapeutically ineffective.

The American people have to find the political will to vote this disaster and his clowns in Congress out of office as soon as it is humanly possible.

UPDATE: The left is simply in awe of Obama, the World Chessmaster! (see comments about enabling grandiosity above) Yeah, right:
A sheriff who spends months convincing gangsters that his gun is unloaded may suffer from a credibility deficit when he tells them to come out with their hands up or else. But all this may yet succeed in prying an agreement from a regime which just demonstrated its willingness lie until it is caught. And when that agreement is to hand it will resolve everything, as we all know, even if you can’t believe a word on it.

But then it's all part of the "hope and change you can believe in" package!

UPDATE II: Still appropriate:

Thursday, September 24, 2009


That's what Scott Johnson calls Bibi Netanyahu's speech to the UN. And I completely concur.

Part 2 of the video of Netanyahu's speech is here, part 3 here, part 4 here.

I'm away on travel and don't have a lot of time to blog at the moment. Back by the weekend. Watch the videos.

Anyone who believes that the U.N. is a force for good in the world today is fundamentally out of touch with reality...and that, sad to say, includes the current POTUS. The U.N. has no shame; and its continued existence only serves to advance the delusions of psychotics like Ahmadinejad and Chavez and Qaddafi; and to further tyrannanical regimes by legitimizing them.

The U.N. should rightly be recognized as a disgusting cesspool; it has morphed from an idealistic dream into a League of Looters.

It is far past time for those countries that still believe in Freedom to accept that this utopian fantasy was just another in a long series of terrible, horrible mistakes that has had a greater role in increasing world suffering and misery, rather than ending it.

If any idealists still exist after watching the way the UN has worked over the last half century and more, then I would suggest that they cut their losses and next time around, come up with a less grandiose body whose membership would be restricted to those countries that demonstate a committment to real freedom--both political and economic-- for their citizens--and not the "Jimmy Carter" kind of country that pretends to have democratic elections so some despot can get the former President's approval and high fives from other tyrants in key UN positions.

What is needed is a League of Liberty to promote and encourage democratic and free institutions around the world.

League of Looters versus League of Liberty. A real no-brainer in my opinion.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


(With much appreciation for Lewis Carroll's "The Walrus and the Carpenter" from which the meter (and more) were rather shamelessly stolen)

The sun shone down on Turtle Bay,
as if to pick a fight:
It did its very best to bring
The actions there to light--
And this was odd, because it was
The middle of the night.

The moon was shining sulkily,
Because she thought the sun
Had got no business to be there
After the day was done--
"It's very rude of him," she said,
"To come and spoil the fun!"

The Council members all were there,
Security was loose.
You'd never hear the drums of war
Since they'd declared a truce!
But still all fighting carried on--
As if it were obtuse.

Obama and the U.N. Lords
Were walking hand in hand;
They wept like anything to see
Such discord in the land:
"If peace were only breaking out,"
They said, "it would be grand!"

"If I looked them clearly in the eye
And used my magic voice.
Do you suppose," Obama said,
"That they would have a choice?"
"I doubt it," said the U.N. Lords,
And shed a happy tear.

"O nations, come and walk with us!"
Obama did entreat.
"A pleasant walk, a pleasant talk,
Before the Council Meet.
We extend to you our unclenched fist,
To show there's no deceit."

Some smarter nations looked at him,
But didn't say a thing:
They saw the glitter in his eyes,
And knew what that would bring;
They would not walk, they would not talk
They understood the sting.

But several nations hurried up,
All eager for this prize,
They claimed they never got respect
They felt so victimized,
And this was odd, because, you know,
They always uttered lies.

Four other nations followed them,
And yet another four;
And thick and fast they came at last,
And more, and more, and more--
All looking for someone to blame,
And Obama had the cure.

Obama and the U.N. Lords
Talked on for hours it seemed,
And when they stopped the nations all
Smiled--in fact they beamed
And all the nations stood and clapped
It was all that they had dreamed.

"The time has come," Obama said,
"To talk reality:
Of peace--and nukes--and climate change--
Of brotherhood--and Me--
And why I am so wonderful
I'm sure you all agree."

"Oh yes," the first four nations said,
"Now that we've have our chat;
You've left us really speechless,
And eager for combat!"
"No hurry!" said the U.N. Lords.
There's lots of time for that.

"A sacrifice," Obama said,
"Is what we chiefly need:
I offer up my own dear land
A land that's filled with greed--
Now if you're ready, nations all,
You can begin to feed."

"Yes, how kind you are!" the nations cried,
And never skipped a beat.
"After kindness and naivete,
We cheer on your defeat!"
"Ah social justice!" Obama sighed.
"It's all so very neat..."

"It seems a shame," Obama said,
"To waste my special gift;
It could be used for all you know--
To give the world a lift!"
The Nations said nothing but
"That's spreading it too thick!"

"We weep for you," the Nations said:
"We deeply sympathize."
With sobs and tears they sorted out
Their peaces of the prize,
Holding up their handkerchiefs
Before their streaming eyes.

"O Nations," said the U.N. Lords,
"We need a man like O!
He can lead us all to hope and change!'
And steer us far from woe--
And as Secretary General
He'll put on a lovely show.


Obama's speech to the UN.

Jennifer Rubin:
Now, in his four pillars of foreign policy, what was missing? Why, human rights and democracy, of course....The president keeps telling us he isn’t naive (funny how Ronald Reagan and even Bill Clinton didn’t have to keep compulsively telling us that). Well, maybe he’s just incredibly cynical. Or uninterested in facing the real dangers to America and its allies. In his view, they simply don’t exist.

Ahmadinejad is now speaking lecturing us in morality at the U.N.

UPDATE: They are both anti-capitalist, anti-Imperialism, social justice seekers. Take your pick as the Demagogue of the Day:


Tuesday, September 22, 2009


We are in the middle of a war in Afghanistan (you know, the "good war"-hahaha) and our busy little President suddenly can't seem to find any time to formulate a coherent policy or even discuss it with his Generals. But, you've probably noticed that Obama the Wonderful has all the time in the world to lecture our kiddies about their schoolwork; make a full Ginsburg of the TV News shows AND Letterman to pimp his Health Care reform; and to voice his irritation that there is not yet peace in the Middle East (how dare they ignore The One??). Not to mention the enormous amount of time he's wasting denegrating our countryto all the looters at the UN--while proudly pointing to his own "accomplishments" and wonderfulness on climate change. What a guy! A Man for the World.

Many Americans are slowly coming to realize that the only imminent "irreversible catastrophe" is the Obama Administration's plans for transforming America into a third world country. Yes he can.

Even in Europe, they are beginning to wake up to the fact that the Messiah is in over his head.

Cliff May notes:
This is a dangerous game. We blame ourselves for a crisis that may or may not exist: Are we really certain that the world is warming up dangerously, that industrial development is causing it, and that we can “fix the problem” without returning to a 19th-century economy?

Then, we grin as we are criticized by all and sundry.

Meanwhile, those gathered at the U.N. and the media covering them avoid talking about Islamist terrorism, genocide in Darfur, brutal suppression in Iran by a regime that is attempting to acquire nuclear weapons, and similar unfashionable topics.

It’s unreal. Or maybe it’s surreal.

This is not only UNreal, it is aggressively anti-real.

UPDATE: Oh yes, reality is a bitch.


Is President Postmodern about to take his eyes off the ball in Afghanistan? His indecision and waffling on the subject makes it seem like he is getting cold feet. Not to mention the absolute horror of a Democrat doing something that goes against the polls. Remember--because it's easy to forget--that Afghanistan was always the Democrats "good war"--i.e., a way they could pretend to be strong and tough on national defense... you know, without actually having to be strong or tough.

Victor Davis Hanson has this to say:
Something is not quite right about the conventional wisdom about the Afghanistan war. For nearly eight years, yearly casualties in Afghanistan sometimes were less than a month's losses in the dire days in Iraq (e.g., 98 Americans killed in 2006 in Afghanistan, 112 killed in Iraq during December 2006). And while many argue that we took our eye off the ball, to quote the president, by going into Iraq to fight the optional war and shorting the essential one, it remains true that while Iraq was hottest, Afghanistan was weirdly sometimes quietest....

If there really is such a thing as a global war on radical Islamic terrorism, and bin Laden is to be taken at his word that both Afghanistan and Iraq have at times been alternately central fronts in that war, then it would be a tragedy that after fighting a two-front war, and winning one, we, rather than the losing enemy, would become demoralized by our success, and they emboldened by their defeat.

Or, to put it plainly: Obama & company can still snatch defeat from the jaws of victory and undo all the progress made in the [now rhetorically defunct] war on terror....or, is it now overseas non-contingency operations?

Monday, September 21, 2009


WOW. Full NEA transcript and audio here .

I don't have a lot more to say on this other than to suggest you go and read the whole sordid mess for yourself. Isn't it astonishing that the President of the US is out to corrupt artists and seduce them into working for the collective? What ever happened to artistic integrity? To 'speaking truth to power' and all that jazz? I particularly liked this comment in Nick Gillespie's Post:
Embedded in the discussion is at least one other disturbing point: a nearly lunatic delusion that artists are the vanguard of the proletariat. As Mike Skolnick, the political director for music impresario Russell Simmons, told the participants, the assembled crew “tell our country and our young people sort of what to do and what to be in to; and what’s cool and what’s not cool.” While that command-and-control notion is widely shared by liberals and conservatives alike, it is patently false. Artists and politicians hate to hear this, but the audience does have a mind of its own.

I discuss how art is one of the favorite weapons of the tyrant in this post. Among other points is this:
Now that President Postmodern is in the White House, what's to become of all those poor artists and poets who used to courageously speak "Truth to Power"?

I guess they will be more than happy to devolve into mindless tools of the powerful, yet benevolent, Obama Utopia.

...[D}on't waste your time feeling sorry for all the repulsive second-handers who are voluntarily willing to suborn their "creativity" to pimping for Obama....


Discussing a headline in which the 'progressive' Swede's have decided to slash income taxes to promote job growth, John at PowerLine wonders:

It's an interesting comparison: Sweden experimented with the nanny state, learned that it was devastating to the economic and moral health of its people, and is moving back toward individualism. Here in the U.S., we had the world's most dynamic economy, and the lesson we took away from that--some of us, anyway--was that we were doing something wrong and needed to socialize everything. Curious.

It is indeed curious if you have as your assumption that what is going on in the United States right now is actually a logical response to a perceived problem, with the goal of solving the problem. But it is not.

Wretchard actually gets to the essence of what might actually going on in the land of 'Hope and Change' when he dissects whether or not the increasing animosity between left and right is due to a heightened rhetoric; or something else?

This raises the possibility that, despite Nancy Pelosi’s fears, the real cause of increasing animosity isn’t heightened rhetoric: on the contrary, the heightened rhetoric may itself be the result an intensified competition for power. It’s a symptom and not the cause. My guess is that the effect of concentrating wealth and power in government hands has created a prize which is distorting civil relations, like some singularity which is warping the space around it and pulling everything into its maw. When the pot of gold is indivisibly concentrated in one place, a winner-take-all game ensues, or as Collier and Hoeffler put it, “a simple rational choice model of greed-rebellion” is enforced. The trash-talk follows.

Read it all.

With the increasing amount of power being concentrated in the central government, is it any wonder that this "prize" is having a significant negative effect on civil relations. Sadly, it isn't just the Democrats who are seduced by the idea of power and accumulating as much of it to themselves as possible. Both parties instinctively understand that the more laws and regulations they pass; the more legislation they come up with at the federal level, the more power their party will possess.

The only difference between the parties is the degree to which they lust for this power over others.

When it comes to the desire for power, logic and reason always take a back seat to brute force. We are dealing with human nature here; at its worse and most thuggish.

But it is the Democratic Party which has given a prominent place to the ideology of the lunatic left; and who have initiated a deliberate and calculated attempt to manipulate and appeal to one of the worse aspects of human nature--primitive envy--and stoke the fires of resentment and entitlement.

The most advanced and dynamic economy on the entire planet, and for decades the only message we have heard from the Democrats (except, of course, when THEY are in the White House) since the 60's: Things are BAD! Poverty is INCREASING! DOOM DOOM DOOM! You foolish people out there only think you are content!

Don't you know that there are people in this very country who are richer than you are? There are even (gasp!) people who are smarter, more talented, and happier than you could possibly ever be!

Is this fair? Is this something that we have to put up with in our politically correct, culturally diverse, and oh so egalitarian society? You don't have to be satisfied with life, liberty and only the pursuit of happiness-- WE CAN GUARANTEE HAPPINESS FOR YOU!

You only think this is a land of opportunity...but vote for THE DEMOCRATS and you will see how much MORE you will have!

And now we have Barack the Messiah in the White House, who manages to cloak this same old tired egalitarian message in his lovely rhetorical babblings about "hope", and "change", and "yes we can"--as if he were actually appealing to the best, instead of the worst within each of us.

The Democratic Party is there for all you unhappy people who want MORE--but who don't want to work for it. They will tell you that you are entitled to it; that it is your right and that they will get it for you! Yes they can!

Ironically, they can even while they proselytize with their trademark intellectual and moral superiority, against the wickedness and selfishness of our materialistic/capitalistic society.

Only in the incredible wonderland of their benevolent neo-marxist uptopia is it possible to have your cake and eat it too.

So-called "progressives" (I put it in quotes because I believe they are not in the least progressive, but are, rather, regressive) such as Obama, operate under an economic model that is more genetic as opposed to cognitive. They are still functioning with the herd mentality and have yet to embrace modern civilizization or individualism, preferring instead to function on an instictual, rather than a rational level. This is why they find capitalism and market economics so repugnant. It is also why community organizations like ACORN are so appealing to them.

From a recent article by Andrew Cassel:
In other words, to have an intuitive grasp of economics, you might just need to take a step or two up the evolutionary ladder."Finally, it all makes sense!The economic primitivism that is unceasingly promoted by the political left is a remnant of the cave-dwelling days of mankind; an idyllic era of history to which the left desperately yearns to return.
The word "progressive" is thus a simple rhetorical manipulation to diguise the essential backwardness of the left's economc thinking.It also might explain the sense of solidarity that many leftists feel with the various primitive cultures still existing in the 21st century. Try as they might, they just can't hide their admiration for cave-dwellers like Osama; or the egalitarianism of the most backward societies on the planet.

The postmodern populists of the leftist Democrats (and there are a few in the Republican Party, also) are always willing to give away other people's money and denigrate other people's success; but you don't often see them living in ordinary homes or taking regular commercial flights to do their politicing. Yet, how is it they always get away with the ridiculous assertion that they are somehow "champions" of all of us little people?

The left is so immersed in class envy and socialist rhetorical bullshit, they haven't seemed to notice that this is the same bankrupt ideology that could never deliver on any of its promises in the last century; and will never deliver in this one either (just ask the people of Sweden who have had a wakeup call about taxes; or watch as Hugo Chavez continues to take the economy of Venezuela (not to mention individual liberty of its citizens) down the proverbial toilet).

But hey! Class warfare is a well-trod path to power. Look at Hugo Chavez. Having duped the peasants of his country into a state of perpetual envy and entitlement, and won a "democratic" election, he instantly conned them into and endless, perpetual Hugo-ness by making himself their Dictator for Life! I mean, isn't that the perfect power grab, after all? Get yourself elected democratically; then ensure that you will be in power for life!

No wonder the left loves him so. He's very good at what he does. They undoubtedly envy him and wish they had his cojones.

Thomas Sowell wrote in a one of his many columns on the subject:
People in the media, in academia and among the intelligentsia in general who are obsessed with "disparities" in income and wealth usually show not the slightest interest in how that income and wealth were produced in the first place.

They are hot to redistribute the existing income and wealth but seem wholly unaware that how you do that today can affect how much income and wealth will be produced tomorrow. Any number of schemes for redistributing wealth have ended up redistributing poverty in a number of countries.

"Progressives" in the media and among academics and intellectuals claim to be interested in ending poverty but the production of more output is the only way to end poverty for millions of people.

It not only can be done, it has already been done in many countries, for all countries were once very poor by today's standards. But most self-styled "progressives" show virtually zero interest in economic history or in economics in general.
Sowell is absolutely correct. As I have said multiple times, poverty has a cure and it it capitalism. But for the left--those "progressives" that Sowell identifies, to embrace that cure would require letting go their death-grip on an ideology whose economic redistribution plans have repeatedly been shown to be catastrophically ineffective and oppressive in the real world.

Indeed, their "progressive" ideology has, in fact, caused all the societies which believed in it to regress economically and politically; causing misery and despair for many millions of souls.

If trillion of dollars in investment and aid hasn't been able to raise economic output in such countries, then what can? It turns out that democratic institutions and economic freedom have been shown to be the key determinants of growth and have "a positive influence on economic growth, while foreign aid does not."

In other words the alleviation of poverty is directly linked to economic freedom. The more liberty; the more people are free to pursue their own happiness, the less poverty.

And, needless to say, the LESS government interferes in economic matters, the more freedom each individual has to pursue his or her happiness.

It is economic freedom that is the true cure for poverty. Not taxes. Not regulation. Not government control of the economy and redistribution of wealth; but capitalism. And, it is important to note that economic freedom is unachievable without political freedom. That is the link between poverty and governance. It is not enough to have a superficial form of democracy like the Palestinians, Iranians or the Venezuelans. The proof of a free country is more than just getting to vote for various thugs and criminals once in a while. It is in being able to pursue your own, individual goals and happiness freely without interference or contrary demands from the state.

Programs that originate with the "best of intentions" end up doing exactly the opposite of what was intended. Yet, many people are so ideologically committed to one way of thinking, and so committed to getting and expanding power over others, that they not only refuse to change, but keep pouring money into programs that can be shown to actively harm the people they are meant to help--encouraging dependence rather than autonomy; a sense of entitlement, rather than a sense of personal accomplishment; and reinforcing stereotypes they were meant to end.

What makes matters worse is that the "champions of the poor and oppressed" (as progressives of the left like to think of themselves) then virtually demonize anyone who suggests an alternate strategy-- even when that strategy has been proven to work.

We see this time and again in their portrayal of conservatives or Republicans as people who "hate the poor"; or eve as as "racists"--whenever it is suggested that pouring money into some programs has not worked or even worsened the problem of poverty; or when the idea of cutting taxes is proposed. If you want to cut taxes, you must want to kill babies and little puppies, by their crazy economic "logic".

For them, it is a radical --and simply unacceptable--idea that maybe there may be other solutions that encourage independence and self-sufficiency. Such ideas are reflexly deemed as insulting, demeaning, or damaging to the self-esteem and fragile feelings of the poor.

Their programs are basically all show and no substance. They make the people who propose and maintain them feel good, but do little to change the underlying causes of poverty and, in fact, reinforce the dynamics that perpetuate it.

The true believers of the political left become hysterical and incapable of reasonable discussion at this point; and psychologically it is apparent that their beliefs on this subject serve an intense psychological need. They need to portray their enemies as racist, sexist etc. as a way of deflecting awareness from their reprehensible thoughts and behavior, which cannot compare with their glorious rhetoric.

This is a very convenient psychological ploy that prevents these progressives from ever having to acknowledge their own innermost prejudices and biases, and hence they can easily convince themselves that their own racist, sexist behavior is appropriate--or even serves some "higher good". In the psychiatry business, we refer to this psychological maneuver as "projection". It requires considerable self-deception and this is usually achieved by "talking the talk" of equality, but "walking the walk" of egalitarianism.

That is how "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" has slowly morphed into "from each according to his abilities to each according to his needs" as the mantra of the Democratic party.
"From each according to their ability blah blah blah.." has NEVER worked anywhere it has been tried. The only result has been dragging everyone down to the level of poverty and misery and keeping them there. There are many people --both Democrats and Republicans-- who genuinely want to end racism and poverty. Many sincerely want to help the poor to have better lives. So, the question is: why not go with what works, instead of what doesn't and has never worked?

Redistributing wealth--the method of choice promulgated by the political left--is a scam that so-called "progressive" con artists have played for many decades now. What they actually do is redistribute poverty because their goal of the scam, as Sowell brilliantly notes, is to give themselves "sweeping powers to control other people's lives, in the name of curing the ills of society."

Scratch a progressive leftist, and you will see that underneath the caring, compassionate exterior he or she presents to the world, is the con artist/tyrant whose primary desire is control over others.

And, the more charasmatic the progressive; the more they can disguise their desire for power in some sort of "selfless" desire to lead you to the promised land where you will all be above-average and rich like they are--the more dangerous such a person is to the real American dream.

Leszak Kolakowski, a Polish philosopher expelled from the Communist Party in 1968 for his heretical views made the following keen observation about the morality of socialism (from My Correct Views on Everything:

Socialism as a social or moral philosophy was based on the ideal of human brotherhood, which can never be implemented by institutional means. There has never been, and ther will never be, an institutional means of making people brothers. Fraternity under compulsion is the most malignant idea devised in modern times; it is the perfect path to totaltarian tyranny.

One of the most important intellectual breakthroughs I had while studying economics in college, was the realization that the social engineers of the political left, motivated as they are by their creative utopian aspirations--expressed by the desire to impose (forcibly, if necessary) universal peace, social justice and brotherhood upon humanity--are completely oblivious to the malignant side of their own natures. Both they and the capitalist entrepreneurs of the right who they despise so vehemently are driven by the darker human emotions: envy, greed and a need to dominate others.

However, there is an extremely crucial difference between them:

The do-gooder leftist in all the various ideological incarnations--the antiwar crowd, the environmental crowd, the communists, socialists, and assorted collectivists--offers the rationale that he does what he does for the "common good" and for "social justice", "peace" and "brotherhood". His high-minded, self-righteous rhetoric justifies (to him anyway) imposing his will and beliefs on others for their own good; and he will not hesitate to use whatever coercive capablity he has at hand to get others to do what he wants and what he says.

The capitalist, on the other hand, is overtly out to pursue his own selfish profit, and understands he must use persuasion. That is, he must convince people that his ideas and the products of his mind are better than all the rest so that they will be willing to part with their hard-earned money to possess them. His desire for power over others is manifested in an indirect manner because people must want what he has to offer and believe that they will benefit from an interaction with him.

There is no parallel social limitations on the behavior of the leftist. This tyrant wannabe does not feel the need to convince others of the veracity or even the effectiveness of his ideas; nor does he accept defeat when others are not interested or resist their implementation. He knows in his heart what is best for everyone, and he will use coercion if necessary. He will not allow options; nor will he permit others do do what they think is right for themselves. Their feelings or concerns are a matter of complete indifference to him. Only his own matter.

The leftist's desire for power is direct and absolute; and this is a direct consequence of his utopian ideology.

And there is no area of your life which will escape his intrusive psychopathology, because he justifies it by saying he is really doing it for your sake.

The clever leftist always manages to hide these darker motivations--the envy, greed, and desire for power--and pretend they don't even exist--even to himself. He tells himself he does not possess such dark motives; that his motives are pure and uncontaminated by the kind of self-serving goals the selfish capitalists pursue. The banal platitudes and silly slogans he chants during his protest marches make him feel oh so good about himself--and if he is charismatic, he will make you feel good about yourself. Experiencing too much knowledge and insight about his inner state would make him extremely uncomfortable; perhaps even causing him to question some of his basic assumptions about himself or his beliefs.

This is the essence of the "dilemma of the utopians". They see themselves as so pure and righteous; so correct and virtuous; how is it possible that their beautiful utopian dreams always turn into such horrible human nightmares?

You can then count on the true leftist believer to close his eyes not only to his own internal reality, but also to the external reality that proves the uselessness of his beliefs in the real world.
But in the end, reality is too logical an argument to have much sway with the man (or woman) of the left anyway. Like Alice, we find ourselves in an Obama Wonderland where nothing makes sense anymore. Curiouser and curiouser.

Saturday, September 19, 2009


The paranoid psychotic president of Iran still thinks the Holocaust was a "lie":
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called the Holocaust a lie Friday, raising the stakes against Israel just as world powers try to decide how to deal with the nuclear ambitions of an Iran in political turmoil.

"The pretext (Holocaust) for the creation of the Zionist regime (Israel) is false ... It is a lie based on an unprovable and mythical claim," he told worshippers at Tehran University at the end of an annual anti-Israel "Qods (Jerusalem) Day" rally.

"Confronting the Zionist regime is a national and religious duty."

Without treatment, paranoid and delusional people only escalate their sick distortions of reality. And, could anyone possibly imagine it's a mere coincidence that Iran raises the stakes against Israel immediately after witnessing the weakness and appeasement of Russia by the Obama Administration??

You see, when it comes to predicting behavior--especially the behavior of unstable, paranoid and delusional people--the only thing you can count on is that their paranoia and the behavior associated with it will be cranked up a notch or two when you compassionately (and diplomatically) enable the fantasies of their delusional world.

Friday, September 18, 2009


He thought you could achieve peace through appeasement and worked hard with the villains of his time to do exactly that. It didn't work out too well for him--or the world.

[from Punch, 1938]

In "Fight, Flight and the Persistence of Evil", I wrote:
In the movie Serenity, Captain Mal Reynolds has witnessed the horrific nightmare that came from the lovely utopian dreams of the 'do-gooders' of his universe--who only wanted to eliminate human aggression so as to create a perfect society; they meant well, you know--and he decides it is time to take a moral stand against such naked evil: "Sure as I know anything, I know this - they will try again. Maybe on another world, maybe on this very ground swept clean. A year from now, ten? They'll swing back to the belief that they can make people... better. And I do not hold to that."

While the pacifist ('turning the other cheek' is another variant of running away, or Flight) may be considered saintly and their principles admired and emulated, if such a reaction to dealing with existential threats were biologically programmed into a species, that species would not survive for very long. Even in those species where the preferred response to danger is to almost always run away(because of their size or other limitations), they are still able to fight--quite viciously--if necessary. Take, for example, a typical rat whose usual behavior is to run away from any threat. When cornered, even this small animal will fight to the death if their survival is at stake.

All this is not to say that Flight strategies can not be extremely useful in many dangerous situations. They are. But, consider this very modern reality: there is nowhere to run to avoid WMD. And an important corollary to that is that there is no appeasing someone who is dedicated to an ideology that requires them to kill you.

Under such circumstances, there is no land that can be given up for peace--they will demand more and more and still come after you. There is no appeasement that will prevent them from 'wiping' you off the map. In other words, there is no way to coexist with the kind of evil that exists today.

This essentially means that the 50% of our population whose instinct, when confronted with the repugnant and unbelievable evil of Islamic fundamentalism and its direct and unambiguous threat to Western Civilization, is to run away, appease or convert; are incorrect in thinking that their peaceful response will be effective in preserving their own and their loved one's lives for any significant amount of time. On the contrary, it is more likely that it guarantees their eventual extinction--either physically or psychologically. The only option for them in the end--whether they like it or not-- is to turn and fight (like the cornered rat) or die. Interestingly, and unlike the survival instinct of the rat; many modern humans when faced with the evil that confronts us in the 21st century, have found comfort in psychological denial and in magical thinking about the threat.

Bruce Thornton has written about the magical thinking that seems to dominate foreign policy:
Worse, however, is the magical thinking that lies behind the mantra of “diplomacy.” This faith in talk is predicated on assumptions about human nature and state behavior difficult to validate by the historical record. It reflects a Western Enlightenment idea that force is an outmoded relic of our primitive past, to be replaced by rational discussion in which give-and-take dickering, negotiation, respect for the other side’s position and demands, and a mutual, sincere desire to adjudicate grievance and avoid conflict can resolve disagreements. The key assumption is that in the end all people are rational and want peace and comfort more than any other good.

It is well to remember what Winston Churchill once famously observed:
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.

Remember Neville Chamberlain? The crocodiles ate him. A new generation of crocodiles are circling in the sewers of the world today looking for the Chamberlain of the 21st century.

UPDATE: Prior to WWII, Chamberlain himself flew to Germany to negotiate directly with Hitler in order to achieve "peace in our time". But, even he never managed all this:
I thought Barack Obama would be a poor and troublesome president. Did I think he would yuk it up with Hugo Chávez, smirk with Daniel Ortega about the Bay of Pigs, turn his wrath on a Central American democracy trying to follow its constitution, denounce President Bush abroad, bow to the king of Saudi Arabia, endorse a radical Middle Eastern view of how Israel came into being, knock Western countries that try to protect Muslim girls from unwanted shrouding, invite the Iranian regime to our Fourth of July parties, stay essentially mute in the face of counterrevolution in Iran, squeeze and panic Israel, cold-shoulder the Cuban democrats in order to warm to the Cuban dictatorship, scrap missile defense in Eastern Europe, and refuse to meet with the Dalai Lama — in addition to his attempts to have government eat great portions of American society? No, I did not. You?

Just call it the Obama Doctrine.

UPDATE: Rich Lowry: Does Obama deserve the "Neville"?
With just one announcement, the Obama administration undercut two loyal allies, rewarded Russian bullying, and diminished our ability to counter an emerging Iranian threat. If there were awards for self-defeating weakness, this move would deserve a Neville for Appeasement in a Perpetually Threatened Region.

Just what I was saying! :-)

Thursday, September 17, 2009


(h/t The Corner)

Obama in April, 2009, in Prague:

So let me be clear: Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile activity poses a real threat, not just to the United States, but to Iran's neighbors and our allies. The Czech Republic and Poland have been courageous in agreeing to host a defense against these missiles. As long as the threat from Iran persists, we will go forward with a missile defense system that is cost-effective and proven. (Applause.) If the Iranian threat is eliminated, we will have a stronger basis for security, and the driving force for missile defense construction in Europe will be removed. (Applause.)

Obama, today:
Defense Secretary Robert Gates said the decision to abandon the Bush administration's plans came about because of a change in the U.S. perception of the threat posed by Iran.

Mr. Gates said intelligence experts concluded the short- and medium-range missiles were "developing more rapidly than previously projected" in Iran. The findings are a major reversal from the Bush administration, which pushed aggressively to begin construction of the Eastern European system before leaving office in January.

Mr. Gates said the previous administration's plans will be changed, moving away from the installation of a missile-defense shield in the Czech Republic and Poland in the near future. He said a second phase to begin in 2015 could result in missiles being placed on land in Eastern Europe.

Funny how quickly Obama seems to be acting on intelligence that has repeatedly proved to be incorrect and who some in the Democratic party insist has lied to Congress repeatedly, isn't it?

So, let me be clear: Obama easily perverts the truth when it suits his purposes--in case you hadn't noticed.
The White House has put out a "fact sheet" on their policy of Russian appeasement/missile defense surrender. The fact sheet says that the new approach -- focusing on SM-3 and sea-based systems (presumably in Turkey) -- will "augment our current protection of the U.S. homeland against long-range ballistic missile threats." That is a lie. This system will provide zero, nada, zilch protection to the U.S. homeland, providing only defense against short- and medium-range missiles to Europe.

The fact sheet says this system will protect "our Allies in Europe sooner and more comprehensively than the previous program, and involves more flexible and survivable systems." That is a lie. The system that was being placed in Poland is already operational in Alaska. These new plans will now take years of negotations to implement and will necessarily be less survivable as they will not be underground.

The fact sheet says that "The Czech Republic and Poland, as close, strategic and steadfast Allies of the United States, will be central to our continued consultations with NATO Allies on our defense against the growing ballistic missile threat." That is a lie. The Czechs and Poles get a midnight phone call from the president while Tauscher is already in the air. They were not consulted with and have been given no assurances -- because the president is selling them out.

Read it all, and ask yourself why the U.S. is now systematically, and with great haste, selling out our allies and making nice with tyrants all around the world. Our foreign policy is now selfless, unilateral appeasement.

I think it is time to be very afraid for America and the entire world.

UPDATE: Excellent timing anyway:
Aside from Thursday being the 70th anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Poland, here's the latest from the Associated Press:
Nuke agency says Iran can make bomb

VIENNA - Experts at the world's top atomic watchdog are in agreement that Tehran has the ability to make a nuclear bomb and is on the way to developing a missile system able to carry an atomic warhead, according to a secret report seen by The Associated Press.

The document drafted by senior officials at the International Atomic Energy Agency is the clearest indication yet that the agency's leaders share Washington's views on Iran's weapon-making capabilities

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Seems like I'm not the only one out there thinking about this:
Two of every three practicing physicians oppose the medical overhaul plan under consideration in Washington, and hundreds of thousands would think about shutting down their practices or retiring early if it were adopted, a new IBD/TIPP Poll has found.

You can read my thoughts on the subject here.


How low can our national discourse sink? Well, for some, to levels of severe paranoia and fantasies of persecution. Charles Krauthammer notes:

You know, the accusation of racism is a sign of desperation by people who know they are losing the national debate, and they want to hurl the ultimate charge in American politics.

This is dealing from the bottom of the deck, and I agree that it is a disgusting tactic. It's done as a way to end debate. The minute you call somebody a racist, the debate is over. You don't continue….

Accusations of racism are the last refuge of the liberal scoundrel.

As for Maureen Dowd, imagining a word [“boy”] that wasn't said: Well, in my previous profession, I saw a lot of people who heard words that weren't said. They were called patients. Many of them were actually helped with medication.

The reason she won't be — and others who are hurling the [racism] accusation — is because it is a deliberate attempt to change the subject and discredit the opposition with an unprovable — and unproven — ad hominem.[emphasis mine]

Victor Davis Hanson weighs in:

To prove their charge, those who allege racism would have to show empirically that the present angry rhetoric eclipses what was said about and done to Bush. It does not yet.

We don't see the word "hate" used in mainstream publications like The New Republic and the Guardian, as it was during the Bush years. (Even worse, really unspeakable things were done to Bush in novels and films.) "You lie" is about on par with the past statements of a Rep. Pete Stark or a Howard Dean ("I hate Republicans"), or the booing Democrats at the 2005 State of the Union. The extremists at the demonstrations are in smaller numbers so far than those who turned out against Bush and the Iraq War. A senior figure like John Glenn or Al Gore has not called the current president a Nazi or brownshirt.

A better explanation than right-wing racism for the Left's exasperation is that in the Bush wilderness years, the Left assumed permanent political marginalization, adopted an ends-justify-the-means strategy of street rhetoric against Bush, then found themselves unexpectedly as the establishment, and now are appalled that anyone might emulate their own past emotional outbursts....

...the larger question is why the Left is now nearly unhinged about criticism of a black liberal president, when it was silent (well, there was always Harry Belafonte . . .) about the racial implications of the constant and vicious anger directed at Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice, not to mention the rather personal, condescending attacks on Alberto Gonzales. For that matter, the ubiquitous Pete Stark once said some particularly unkind and racist things about former health and human services secretary Louis Sullivan (who is black).

Cast your memory back to last year's campaign; when everyone in the news media calmly and matter-of-factly discussed in detail things like "the black vote" or "the hispanic vote." In a way it is nothing short of incredible to witness the blatant racism and offhand stereotyping ("typical white") that now rolls off the tongues of news commentators, Democrats, and even the POTUS.

This is the "racial trancendence" we were promised by the Democrat's messiah last year. And, this is the typical legacy of leftist thought.

Not only are they paranoid about race and delusional, but they are completely obsessed with race and racial identity. What we are seeing is the end game maneuvers of the Democratic's multi-decade pimping of identity politics and victimhoodology. All who stand in opposition to their leader must, by definition be racist.

It seems as if we are well on the path to having the primary legacy of Barack Obama be one of racial polarization ; divisiveness; and identity politics taken to the nth degree. Amazingly, this could have been predicted at the very start of Obama's campaign in early 2008, as two key Democrat-approved victim groups lined up to do battle for the nomination, each believing they represented the purist victims of the evils of the white male capitalist oppressors.

If ever there was an example of how people regularly delude themselves into thinking they are doing "good", when in fact they are leaving the door open to the worse aspects of their own human nature, this descent into regular accusations of "Racism!" qualifies.

The do-gooder leftist in all the various ideological incarnations--the antiwar crowd, the environmental crowd, the communists, socialists, and assorted collectivists--offers the rationale that he does what he does for the "common good" and for "social justice", "peace" and "brotherhood". His high-minded, self-righteous rhetoric justifies (to him anyway) imposing his will and beliefs on others for their own good; and he will not hesitate to use whatever coercive capablity he has at hand to get others to do what he wants and what he says.

Using the "ultimate charge in American politics"--i.e., accusing someone of racism--is one of their favorite ploys; not only to end the discussion, but also to coerce the object of their accusation into doing what they want. In this case, they want all opposition to Obamacare to disappear.

The Democrats have framed the debate much the same way that Obama did during the campaign--i.e., if you don't vote for me, then it will be definitive proof of the latent racism of America. It will prove that Reverend Wright is absolutely correct in his assessment, don't you see? Are we the KKK of America, after all--or will we be redeemed by doing the right and proper thing--i.e., vote for a man or woman on the basis of his or her color or gender and not on the basis of his or her ideas?

This is only the latest escalation of the casual racism and sexism that is the legacy of the Democratic Party and do-gooder left. By manipulating the Blacks, the Women, the Gays, the [insert your favorite victim group here] they have fashioned for themselves a 'rainbow coalition'--or to put it another way, a' politically correct' path to power that actively promotes racism, sexism--and any other prejudice they can think of--all in the name of eliminating or opposing racism, sexism and prejudice. Wow.

In other words, they bring about and make worse the very thing they claim to be opposed to--whether it is racism, sexism or any other -ism-- but at least in the process of calling someone else a "racist" they transietly feel really really good about themselves. That dynamic is actually how paranoia and projection work in psychiatry. You feel good about yourself (or at least better) because you project your own unacceptable feeling onto others.

Think about it, Mr. Obama, Ms. Dowd et. al.; and maybe search your own soul for a change to discover the origin of your fantasies of persecution.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


The individual choices we make in life are a direct reflection of our values and make up the foundation of our character. It is our choices which define who we really are, more than any other factor.

During the current health care debate, hardly a day goes by that we do not hear from those who believe they are morally superior to the rest of us, that this issue "concerns more than material things"...that it is "above all a moral issue; at stake are not just the details of policy, but fundamental principles of social justice and the character of our country."

Indeed, the moral choices we the people make on this issue will say a lot about the character of our country.

So let's consider the American character in the context of the issue of health care. Two recent articles are relevant. In an op-ed at Real Clear Politics, Troy Senik makes an astute observation.
Healthcare isn't failing because of Obama's weaknesses or his opponent's strength. It is failing because the proposal misapprehends the American character. On a moral level, there are sacrifices of both liberty and responsibility that the American people aren't willing to make. And on a practical level, citizens who enjoy a world of instant convenience in everything from their music downloads to their airplane tickets aren't willing to entertain a debate about whether it's better to ration health care on a Soviet model or a Canadian model.

A revolt is afoot in the nation. The media and the political class might not understand the appeal of the Ron Pauls and Glenn Becks of the world. But even many of those who disagree with Paul and Beck on the specifics understand the draw. Something is resurfacing. Americans are increasingly unafraid to say the word "liberty". Politicians who don't share that trait may want to start updating their résumés. [emphasis mine]
The Founders understood very well that "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" require that government be kept small and limited in its scope, otherwise it will inevitably encroach on these natural rights that define the American character. If individuals do not take personal responsibility for their own life; if government is allowed to make most of the important choices for you, then you have either voluntarily and willingly relinquished your natural rights; or they have been taken from you against your will.

In either case, you will eventually realize that you are living under a tyranny--perhaps a soft, comfortable and infantalizing tyranny--but a tyranny nonetheless.

This choice--voluntarily relinquishing the natural right to your own life; your liberty; and the pursuit of your own happiness; versus standing against tyranny (even soft tyranny done "for your own good") defines the American character.

Mona Charon posts a response from a reader on her discussion of 'market failure', which I think says something important about character:
Having seen the response from one of your correspondents that health insurance is too expensive for recent graduates, I thought I would check to see if much had changed in the last 15 years. When I finished my graduate degree, my first employer in Richmond did not provide health insurance, but I was able to get an Anthem (formerly Blue Cross) policy in Richmond, VA for about $75.00 a month. According to a brief internet search, a 25 year-old non-smoking male living in Richmond, Virginia can get a basic Anthem policy (much like an employer is likely to offer) for $111.00 a month with a $500.00 deductible and $30 copays or $79.00 a month for a $2,500 deductible and $30 co-pays. Thus, your other correspondent is not stretching when he referenced "Cable TV". Give up the Comcast Triple Play and get health insurance. Alternatively, give up one or two nights out a month, and cover your health insurance. What the correspondent seems to miss is that he cannot logically maintain that health insurance is so important that it is a moral obligation for the government to provide it to all of its citizens, but it isn't worth two dates at TGIFriday's a month for an individual.

The sentence which is in bold (emphasis is mine) captures the essential point here. The health care debate is not fundamentally about health care; or even health insurance. It is about freedom. It is about choices. It is about deciding what is most important to you; whether it is to go out on the town a couple of times a month or choosing to get health insurance instead.

Your life, your values, your freedom, your choices.

And the responsibility of accepting the consequences of those choices.

In the case of those Americans who truly cannot afford health insurance--perhaps we should begin to ask the question of what impedes the market from providing solutions to for that situation?
Health insurance policies are expensive. But this is not a "market-created condition." Most state governments have larded on mandates — insisting that companies cover IVF and alcohol counseling, for example. Government has also forbidden interstate competition in health insurance. Further, private insurance policies are charged an extra premium to cover the shortfall in what Medicare and Medicaid pay providers. We should reform insurance laws to permit the sale of cheap, high-deductible, catastrophic-only coverage for the young, healthy population. If such products were available, most of the healthy uninsured would buy them. This is one reason the analogy to car insurance is inexact. There are high-deductible, catastrophic plans available.

As for the needy uninsured who would still not be able to afford health insurance, we could offer subsidies at a fraction of what it would cost to create Medicare for all, which is what the Democrats are aiming for. Tort reform would also bring down costs.

Why is it so hard to believe that it is the government that has been the source of all the limitations on health care insurance choices? There are many people in government who would have you believe that it is eeeeevil capitalism that is to blame for the "lack of options" available for those with limited incomes.

Thus, having mandated the limitations and forced the system to evolve in the way it has, we are now led to believe that government is the "only solution" and that the "public option" gives people more choices. This is deceptive at best, and an outright lie at worse.

It is a little like putting a wolf in sheep's clothing in among the sheep. A "public option" will eventually eat up all the other choices available, because it has no intention of acting like just another docile sheep once it gets into the herd.

The "wolf" in the health care debate is merely another meaningless neo-Marxist concept ("social justice"--i.e., the redistribution of wealth and the endless promotion of identity politics and victimhood) that is disguised to deceive. It is not capable of never enhancing your choices, but only limiting them. Whenever government intrudes into the intimate aspects of your life and compassionately relieves you of making all those tough decisions; or prevents you from prioritizing according to your own specific needs; how you deal with it defines your character.

Many people want to be relieved of personal responsibility for making choices and are perfectly willing to give up liberty and the responsibility for their own life to pursue their whims at your expense. They will rationalize to themselves that this is what the Declaration of Independence and Jefferson really meant in his opening statement; and that they are entitled--even have a constitutional "right"--to have your wealth redistributed to them.

If that were the case, then one of the greatest documents in history would be known as the Declaration of Dependence.

So it comes down to this in the health care debate: Independence and Freedom vs Dependence and Tyranny.

Choose. Your character depends on it.