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Wednesday, February 03, 2016

About That Mosque Our Non-Muslim President is Visiting 

President Obama is visiting a mosque today, namely the Islamic Society of Baltimore.  His purpose?  In the White House’s own words, to “celebrate the contributions Muslim Americans make to our nation and reaffirm the importance of religious freedom to our way of life.”

I guess those “contributions” must include support for terrorist groups, because the Islamic Society of Baltimore has a record of that:

An imam who served at ISB for a total of 15 years has also been a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood network and has worked for an Islamic relief group that was designated as a terrorist organization by the Treasury Department in 2004. Mohammad Adam el-Sheikh, who served two stints as ISB’s imam, from 1983 to 1989 and from 1994 to 2003, was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood in Sudan in the 1970s. He also co-founded the Muslim American Society, a Falls Church, Va.-based group that is controlled by the Muslim Brotherhood.

While in Baltimore, el-Sheikh served as a regional director for the Islamic American Relief Agency. That group’s parent organization is the Islamic African Relief Agency, which the Treasury Department says provided funds to Osama bin Laden, al-Qaeda, Hamas and other terrorist organizations.

I will try to be charitable – it’s the Pre-Lent season after all – and say this shows egregious incompetence and sloppiness on the part of the Obama Administration.  After all, there are mosques in the United States that do not support terrorism.  Could the President and his people not find one?

But is it not strange that again and again the decisions of this non-Muslim President enable Islamic terror?  The Obama Administration cheerleaded the Muslim Brotherhood coming to power in Egypt.  It supported taking Qaddafi out in Libya, creating a power vacuum terrorists walked right into.  It withdrew us completely from Iraq, creating a vacuum ISIS walked right into.  It let right on in the San Bernardino terrorists.  It turned full on the money spigot to Iran.


Like I said, charity calls for saying this is all just incompetence – horrible, destructive incompetence, but incompetence nonetheless.


But if he had a soft spot for Islamic terrorism, would he be acting any differently?

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Monday, February 01, 2016

Why Oriel College Oxford Backed Down from Taking Down Rhodes 

Many of you by now are already aware that the statue of Cecil Rhodes at Oriel College Oxford will stay.  But you may not be aware that moneyed alumni putting their foot down is a big reason why.  Many were furious that Oriel was considering taking down the statue in the face of pressure from Social Justice Warrior students (I use that last word loosely, by the way.) and were putting their money where their fury was.


At a meeting on Wednesday the governing body was told that because of its ambiguous position on the removal of the statue, “at least one major donation of £500,000” that was expected this year has been cancelled.

In addition, a “potential £750,000 donor” has stopped responding to messages from the college, and several alumni have written to Oriel to say “they are disinheriting the college from their wills”.

One of those who has already cancelled their legacy was going to leave a “seven figure sum” and the college is aware that “another major donor is furious with the College… whose legacy could be in excess of £100m”.

The report warns that there will now "almost certainly" be "one or two redundancies" in its Development Office team because of the collapse in donations. And it has cancelled an annual fundraising drive that should have taken place in April. The report also warns that Oriel's development office could now make an operating loss of around £200,000 this year.


Now some sensitive souls may be appalled that alumni were so throwing the weight of their money around.  But what is appalling is that said pressure was needful in assisting Oriel College to see the light.

Moreover, this is a textbook case of how the students of times past can assist their alma maters from becoming too married to the madnesses of times present.   And alumni usually have a little more perspective than callow students and those ensconced in the ivory towers of academia and can and should on occasion put that perspective to good effect, backed with the hard reality of filthy lucre if need be.

So good on those Oriel alumni – or old members, as they say in England – who assisted their beloved college from turning away from what would have been an odious decision.

If only more American alumni had that much backbone.


NOTE:
For those who think Cecil Rhodes was an awful racist – or that I am for defending his statue, a little history is in order.


The Cape Colony under Rhodes was liberal for its day. Africans could vote if they met the same property-holding or income requirements as whites. Rhodes might have bent too far to placate the Boers, the Dutch settlers whose support he needed to rule the colony. But at the end of his political career, Rhodes opposed a Boer plan to submit Africans to a literacy test before they could vote. Only after Rhodes left office did the Boers establish apartheid as official policy.

When Rhodes created his scholarship in 1902, he included a clause far ahead of its time. His will specifies that no student will be “qualified or disqualified on account of his race or religious opinions.”



The above is not well known, and I did not know it until very recently.  So trust me that I understand if one is not well disposed towards Rhodes.  But really, Cecil Rhodes was more enlightened on race than many 20th Century heroes of the Left.

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Thursday, January 28, 2016

Will the Supreme Court Spank Obama For Violating the Rule of Law? 

Yes, my headline may seem an exercise in wishful thinking.  And perhaps it is. 

But when the Supreme Court decided to hear a challenge of Obama’s Immigration Action from 26 states, it asked something that was both overlooked and rare.  As noted by George Will (Emphasis mine.):

The court has asked to be briefed on a matter the administration must be reluctant to address; the Justice Department requested that the court not insert a “constitutional question” into the case. The question the court will consider is: Did Obama’s action violate the “take care clause”?

Obama has sworn to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution,” which says the president shall “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” Josh Blackman of the South Texas College of Law in Houston and adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute in Washington says that only three times has the court relied on the take care clause to limit executive actions, and the justices have never asked for a briefing on this clause.

It seems at least some on the Supreme Court are ready to give Obama a dressing down on his willfully violating the Rule of Law in the area of immigration, and one the Courts have rarely given a President before. 


I hope I am not engaging in wishful thinking, but, at the least, this is certainly a case to watch.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

A Petition Against Houston’s Unequal Justice 

I confess I don’t have much value-added to say about the indictment of two video journalists from the Center for Medical Progress.  Here are the basics of the case.  In short, they exposed Planned Parenthood’s trafficking in baby parts, but those two courageous investigators, not Planned Parenthood, are the ones indicted.  Outrageous, and yet more shame from the armpit of Texas, Houston.

But others are covering this better than I can.  What I can do is point you to a petition to urge the Harris County D.A. to drop these absurd charges and instead do a real investigation of Planned Parenthood.  I’ve signed the petition and urge all readers to do likewise.


I could also rant about unequal justice in this country.  But I will save that for another day.

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Friday, January 22, 2016

Hillary Intel “Smoking Gun” May Mean Turmoil Ahead 

I am no intelligence expert, but the following is becoming clear even to your very humble blogger.

Hillary Clinton seriously violated the law concerning handling of national secrets.  Yes, it may have only been negligence on her part - although willful negligence is likely here - but it is serious nonetheless, involving intelligence more secret than Top Secret.  I am not exaggerating.  Investigators have had to up their clearance to look into this.  Hillary's nonchalance with national secrets is inexcusable, dangerous, and, yes, criminal.

So we will soon find out if, in Hillary’s own words, “No one is too big for jail.”  There will either be an indictment of Hillary Clinton or there will be a revolt within the FBI. The evidence is that damning. And that revolt could be big enough to bring about no small scandal.


Or this could all blow over and become yet another outrage Obama and Clinton get away with.  We shall see.

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A Salute to the March for Lifers 

Today in Washington, in the midst of predicted awful weather, tens of thousands will march on behalf of those who cannot defend themselves, unborn children.


This past Marcher salutes them!

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Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The Revenge of the Unrepresented 

This past weekend, a new online Texas newspaper began publication – The Paper Trail.  I was honored to be asked to be one of their writers.   Yes, they are brave.

My first missive for The Paper Trail was something of a primer on why American politics are so bizarre at the moment.  Enjoy “The Revenge of the Unrepresented.”

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If you are reading this new and erudite newspaper, you make a point to be informed.  So you may have noticed that these are odd times in politics.  What, Trump the Republican frontrunner for President while Jeb! languishes in the single digits?

But I can make matters simpler to understand, if still odd.  We are experiencing the Revenge of the Unrepresented.  Our English friends some 240 years ago found out the hard way that taxing people without representing them may not evoke a happy response.  Today’s Washington establishment politicians are finding out the same thing, yes, the hard way.

Rewind to 2010.  Obama was determined to cram Obamacare down our throats in spite of half or more of Americans clearly not wanting it.  In January, Massachusetts elected a Republican for the U. S. Senate largely because of opposition to Obamacare.  Yes, Massachusetts.  That’s not an autotypo.

Yet Obama and Congressional Democrats ignored that warning shot and marched forward in passing Obamacare.  The result was a historic political bloodbath in the November 2010 elections, handing the U. S. House and any number of state houses to the Republicans with a clear and simple mandate – Stop Obama.

But that teary-eyed orange-skinned drunk Republican Speaker Boehner and other RINOs did little to stop Obama and instead enabled him.  And that included funding, of all things, Obamacare.  Thus the Republican establishment joined Democrats in virtually ignoring the 2010 elections.

Fast forward to 2014.  Again Americans gave Obama’s Democrats a good pasting at the polls, handing now the U. S. Senate over to the Republicans.  Again, Republicans had a clear mandate to Stop Obama, particularly on the presenting issue of defending our borders and restraining illegal immigration.

But, again, Republican leaders did little to stop Obama and again enabled him, including on immigration.  In fact, Congress, with the support of the establishment Republican leaders, just voted to fund Obama’s illegal immigration programs.  (And when I say illegal, I mean both the programs and the immigration are illegal.  I would say “illegal illegal”, but that would make me appear to be ranting, not to mention ungrammatical, God forbid.)

So, yet again, about half the country finds themselves utterly unrepresented by either party.  This is not only bad policy; it is stupid politics particularly on the part of Republicans.  It is asking, nay, begging for trouble.

And then here comes trouble with funny hair.  And in his very announcement speech for President, he came down hard on illegal immigration to the point of being crude and unrealistic to put it nicely…

And millions loved it.  Immediately, Trump had high poll numbers, and they have gotten higher.  Finally, millions found that someone powerful seemed to represent them on illegal immigration and other issues.  (Note I wrote, “seemed.” I will leave aside the question of whether Trump should be trusted.)

Now are there more sensible ways to fight the establishment of both parties who are so intent on not representing Americans?  I certainly think so.  That’s why I support Ted Cruz, by the way.  But is there a more clear way than Trump to give the establishment of both parties an affectionate one finger wave? 

And, yes, Americans are that angry at the political establishment.   Not just Trump’s numbers reveal that.  Here is what I see looking at the Real Clear Politics poll averages as I write this in early January.  Anti-establishment candidates (Trump, Cruz, Carson, Paul, Huckabee, and Santorum) have a combined 68% support among Republicans.  Jeb!? Just over 4%.  In desperation, the establishment wing of the GOP is turning to Rubio, but he polls only 11.5% compared to Trump at 35% and Cruz at 19.5%.

Can it be any clearer that a lot of people out there are angry at being unrepresented by the establishments of both parties?

So I’ve got a 2016 prediction you can add to the zillions you’ve heard already ‘cept mine is better.  2016 will be the Revenge of the Unrepresented.   One result will be the nomination of Donald Trump this summer or the defeat of Hillary Clinton this November. 


And do not be too shocked if it will be both.

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