Saturday, September 03, 2005


ACE ASKS: IS IT Bush's Fault?

205 schoolbuses, owned and operated by the city of New Orleans (and not the federal government) sat idle asthe ocean swept into the city, and still sit in three foot deep water.

Did Karl Rove order the Mayor of New Orleans not to take the rather simple step of running those buses 24/7 to evacuate the poor (who supposedly didn't have enough money to leave)?More... And nevermind the additional 364 buses of the NO transportation system, which similarly sat in their parking lots while the levees broke.

Remind me again -- who's in charge of a city's transportation system?

Still More... Galveston, Texas had all of its available buses fueled and ready to roll should Katrina hit that city. Why didn't New Orleans!?

By my calculation, 564 buses could have taken AT LEAST 30,000 poor "personal transportation-less" people to safety on Saturday night when mandatory evacuation was ordered and BEFORE the storm struck on Sunday. If they made two trips they might have evacuated EVERYONE WHO HAD NO INDEPENDENT WAY TO EVACUATE! I blame Mayor Nagin and Governor Blanco, NOT FEMA or Bush.

GOD BLESS OUR TROOPS EVERYWHERE - including the thousands helping Hurricane victims right here at home!

The US military has used helicopters to RESCUE more than 4000 people since Monday - that's 50/hour 24 hours a day for 5 days NON-STOP! Often refueling in the air to save time! Picking up stranded victims OFTEN ONE AT A TIME! This effort is HEROIC and GREAT and BRAVE and not laggardly or non-chalant. ANYONE who says the response was bad due to lack of effort is either misinformed or DELIBERATELY LYING SCUM. Here are a few articles which describe your military at work:

Guard Pours Into Gulf Region, Engineers Focus on Draining New Orleans
WASHINGTON, Sept. 2, 2005 – As National Guard vehicles forded floodwaters in downtown New Orleans today delivering critical relief supplies and helping law enforcement officials restore order, workers from the Army Corps of Engineers were focused on draining the city and repairing gaps in its levee system.

Full-Scale Hurricane Response Continues
WASHINGTON, Sept. 2, 2005 – Military support for the Hurricane Katrina response focused today on continuing to evacuate people stranded along the hurricane-ravaged Gulf Coast and getting food, water and medical care to the storm's victims.

More Soldiers Deploy to Help with Relief
WASHINGTON, Sept. 2, 2005 – Thousands of National Guard and active-duty Soldiers from across the nation are deploying to the Gulf coast to help with Hurricane Katrina recovery operations.

Airmen Help on ‘Front Lines’ in New Orleans
CAMP BEAUREGARD, La., Sept. 2, 2005 – In a cramped conference room, Airmen from the 122nd Air Support Operations Squadron here operate and monitor a satellite radio linked to tactical air control party airman in New Orleans to help coordinate disaster relief efforts.

Navy Seabees Deploy to Support Recovery
PORT HUENEME, Calif., Sept. 2, 2005 – Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 40 began deploying a detachment of 125 personnel to Gulfport, Miss., Sept. 1 to provide humanitarian assistance and conduct debris removal in the aftermath of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina.

Coast Guard Continue Rescue Operations
ST. LOUIS, Sept. 2, 2005 – More than 4,000 people have been rescued from rooftops, flooded neighborhoods and hospitals throughout the Gulf Coast region since rescue operations began Monday, and joint-agency rescue operations are continuing day and night.

Arkansas National Guard Opens Centers
CAMP ROBINSON, Ark., Sept. 2, 2005 – At the request of the governor, the Arkansas National Guard is preparing to open 59 readiness centers (formerly referred to as armories) in 58 counties on Saturday and Sunday to assist with efforts to register hurricane evacuees in Arkansas.

Medical Team Aids Hurricane Victims
NAVAL HOSPITAL JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Sept. 2, 2005 – Medical personnel from Naval Hospital Jacksonville, Fla., boarded buses to Naval Air Station Pensacola, Fla., Sept. 1 to rendezvous with the USS Bataan. From there, to New Orleans to provide urgently needed support to relief efforts for residents impacted by Hurricane Katrina.

Mobile Utilities Experts Support Relief Efforts
PORT HUENEME, Calif., Sept. 2, 2005 – Naval Facilities Engineering Command’s Mobile Utilities Support Equipment technicians deployed Aug. 31 to Gulfport, Miss., where they will assess damage and urgent utility needs for Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport.



False Claim #1: "The imperfect response to this tragedy was due to GOP/BusHitler racism and the fact that those hurt by Katrina were mostly black."

FACT (This point is lifted from James Taranto of the WSJ via NRO's KJ LOPEZ) : "Here are the 2000 US Census's racial breakdowns of the populations of those five Louisiana parishes, along with Mississippi's coastal counties, which suffered a direct hit" - [only New Orleans is majority black; there may be more fatalities and certainly a greater loss of private property outside of New Orleans - but the MSM has foucsed on the city of New Orleans. In fact, one parish adjacent to New Orleans has the same total population as the city of New Orleans and has been virtually wiped out. W = white; B = black]:
Parish or county
Jefferson, La.
Orleans, La.
Plaquemines, La.
St. Bernard, La.
St. Tammany, La.
Hancock, Miss.
Harrison, Miss.
Jackson, Miss.
QUESTION: by focusing on the blacks in NOLA, is the MSM TRYING to make Bush look bad and racist? Could it be that the Left-wing partisan/pro-Democrat MSM is very concerned that the GOP is making major in-roads in the black community, and they are exploiting Katrina to diminish Bush's scuccess on this front!?


(2a) "UPI NewsTrack TopNews -- Aug. 27, 2005 at 10:05PM: Hurricane Katrina heads toward Louisiana MIAMI, Aug. 27 (UPI) -- The National Hurricane Center in Miami extended a Hurricane Watch for Louisiana and Florida Saturday as Hurricane Katrina churned across the Gulf of Mexico. President Bush late Saturday declared a state of emergency in Louisiana."

(2b) "Mandatory evacuation ordered for New Orleans -- NEW ORLEANS (AP)" [hat tip POWERLINE] — "In the face of a catastrophic Hurricane Katrina, a mandatory evacuation was ordered Sunday for New Orleans by Mayor Ray Nagin. Acknowledging that large numbers of people, many of them stranded tourists, would be unable to leave, the city set up 10 places of last resort for people to go, including the Superdome. The mayor called the order unprecedented and said anyone who could leave the city should. He exempted hotels from the evacuation order because airlines had already cancelled all flights. Gov. Kathleen Blanco, standing beside the mayor at a news conference, said President Bush called and personally appealed for a mandatory evacuation for the low-lying city, which is prone to flooding."

The Left, and the MSM they still dominate, are trying to exploit this horrific event for political partisan gain. THEY HAVE NO SHAME.

KATRINA AND THE ROOT CAUSE OF LAWLESSNESS; and how to make NEW New Orleans a "Shining City on a Levee"

What separates lawlessness, and the social chaos which results from that lawlessness, from order is NOT just a thin blue line of police hired to enforce social norms and maintain law & order. It is the conscience of each person. The potential and the INCLINATION to do evil and to commit acts of lawlessness IS within each of us. But MOST of us control it. Our ability to control our behavior and to be "pro-social individuals" has to do with how we are RAISED and NOT OUR GENES (except perhaps in the case of clinically sociopathic criminals).

Many people are raised BADLY - with no respect for law or life. We see this most graphically in parts of Palestine where and when jihadistic parents dress their children up as sucide bombers and extol to them the "loveliness" of committing genocide.

Poverty does NOT cause children grow up badly and to behave in this way - nor does ethnicity; bad parenting does. Some of the finest parents in the history of the world were poor. Or ARE poor! Some of the worst are rich. Poor people can - and DO - raise WONDERFUL children who grow up to be good people (regardless of whether they become rich or poor themselves). And poor persecuted people can also raise wonderful kids. So racism is NO EXCUSE.

The breakdown of LAW AND ORDER in New Orleans is widespread BUT PERPETRATED by RELATIVELY FEW PEOPLE -- by THUGS and CRIMINALS - these are people who were thugs and criminals BEFORE the flood, and they are merely using the flood as an excuse to do what they ALWAYS want to do and often do when tthere is no flood and they think no one is looking!

Primarliy the lawlessness is the fault of the lawbreakers. As I have written and linked to in other posts: lawbreakers have been tolerated for way way WAY TOO LONG in New Orleans. This must stop. Adult lawbreakers must be dealt with harshly and imprisoned. Parents and schools must be made accountable for raising good LAW-ABIDING citizens.

After the clean up, and BEFORE reconstruction, we must plan a "NEW NEW ORLEANS" with better housing, better plumbing, better schools, and better jobs. Whole sections of the city will be bulldozed and perhaps the stae and the city and ther feds should declare vast tracks PUBLIC - by eminent domain - and then redeveloped with factories and schools and churches and everything that makes a city's physical plant attractive to investment, businesses, and the middleclass. I belive that New New Orleans might very well become a shining city on a hill - or levee, (HEH! - you should please PARDON the bad joke!).

With a new urban physical plant - properly zoned and financed by a combination of private and public sources - and with a new public committment to pro-social values and a new INTOLERANCE for lawlessness I am ABSOLUTELY SURE that NEW New Orleans will be mo' better than ever!

Besides the perp's themselves, the LOCAL AUTHORITIES BEAR THE MOST RESPONSIBILTY for allowing the conditions which permitted the lawlessness to be so rampant. The local government was inept and utterly incompetent. They should have been better prepared and had a plan to get poor people out of the city and to prevent looting in the otherwise vacated city. They did neither.

FOR INSTANCE, (as had been noted elsewhere), the locals could have AND THEREFORE SHOULD HAVE commandeered ALL CITY BUSES to forcibly evacuate EVERYONE BEFORE THE HURRICANE. They had the buses. They did nothing. The buses are now flooded, and useless because hey weren't even moved to higher ground for use AFTER a flood! This is UTTER INCOMPETENCE by LOCAL GOVERNMENT - (and somewhat by the state and the feds for NOT CATCHING IT BEFOREHAND).

The slowness of relief is another matter. Water and food should have been air-dropped at all central gathering locations (such as the Dome and the Convention Center) within the first 48 hours. It wasn't. For this the FEMA chief should be FIRED. But the slowness of relief is NO EXCUSE FOR LAWLESSNESS.

NOW: I think that the president ought to appoint Colin Powell and Tommy Franks and Rudy Giuliani (and a staff) nto lead a 3-man "Katrina Reconstruction Presidential Oversight Commission" to advise and assist the 3 effected governors (and all the effected mayors) and to make sure that they DO THE RIGHT THINGS with federal assistance.

My prayers are with everyone suffering from this horrific event.

Friday, September 02, 2005

GERMANY AT THE CROSSROADS: will it elect a Thatcher or a Chavez?

UK GUARDIAN (excerpts):
Sixteen years after the fall of the Berlin wall, Ellen Müller looks back with nostalgia at her life in the then communist East Germany. ... a surge of support for Germany's newest political party, the Linkspartei or Left party ... could ... determine Germany's general election in a fortnight. "All the other parties are interested in strengthening capitalism," says Mrs Müller. "We reject it." The party is the result of a merger earlier this year between east Germany's former Communist party and the Work and Social Justice party, a new group founded by disaffected activists from Gerhard Schröder's Social Democrats. After a euphoric start, the Left party ... is expected to capture up to 30% of the vote. If the party does well enough, it could prevent Angela Merkel's conservatives from forming a centre-right government with the FDP, her coalition partner. ... Germany's mainstream political parties have all heaped abuse on the Linkspartei, and in particular, the party's populist star candidate, Oskar Lafontaine. A former chairman of the social democratic party, the SPD, and finance minister, Mr Lafontaine was instrumental in bringing the Social Democrats back into power after 16 years in the wilderness during the Kohl era. But he resigned from Mr Schröder's first government in 1999 in protest at the chancellor's business-friendly policies. He has been a bitter critic ever since. This summer he quit the SPD and announced he was joining the Left party, prompting claims of treachery. The party's other star candidate is Gregor Gysi, a sharp east German lawyer and the leader of the PDS, the former Communist party. ... the Linkspartei's solutions for getting Germany out of its mess include big tax increases, among them a new 50% tax rate on earnings over €60,000 (£41,000) a year. In return, the party promises a minimum wage of €1,400 a month and generous benefits for pensioners and families.
Now let me get this straight: since the Reagan/Thatcher Revolutions the USA and the UK have had HALF the unemployment as Germany and France and twice the economic growth, and yet the Left Party in Germany wants to emulate Cuba and Venezuela and Zimbabwe - and have the government get even MORE involved in the economy (instead of reducing the size of geovernment and cutting taxes). If they do raise taxes and make the job market less free, they'll get what they deserve: a one-way ticket on the road to serfdom.

WHEN LEVEES BREAK - or "I know what it means to miss New Orleans" PART II

A levee is a barrier built to prevent overflow. A literal levee prevents an overflow of water, a flood. Figurative levees are barriers to others things; for instance, a police force is a "levee" against the "flooding" of crime. When there is no police force - or when the police force is seen as weak or unwilling to use force - criminal elements "overflow" - all hell breaks loose. And this is as tough to contain and drain as real floodwaters.

After the liberation of Baghdad, in the absence of a police force willing to use deadly force to maintain order - all hell broke loose. Now, in central Iraq, (including Baghdad) similar criminal sociopathic elements reek havoc and prey upon the general populace, trying use genocidal terror to create the chaos and power vacuum they need to establish the jihadist tyranny they crave. (THEY WILL FAIL.)

Now, in New Orleans a criminal sociopathic element is also reeking havoc upon the populace, exploiting the chaos caused by the levee failure to loot and rape and pillage and desecrate their own city. And for what: a passing selfish moment, a false sense of personal power and an inglorious glory.

We have seen this many times before - after the Rodney King verdict in 1992 in LA; after Hurricane Hugo, to name just a few recent examples. They are criminals "acting out" and they should be squashed.

Commentators who argue that the root cause is either the poverty of the perpetrators, or their hopelessness, slander poor people everywhere.

The "root cause" is BAD PEOPLE; people who are amoral and immoral - and NOT class, NOT race, and NOT creed. NO class or or race or creed is immune from people who are bad. There are criminals in every race, every class, and every creed. LOOK AT IT THIS WAY: if 15% of America is poor, then are 15% of Americans criminals!? Of course not. Poor people are most often victims of crime. And the poor suffering people stranded in Nawlins have been victimized again by the criminal element that has been hampering the relief efforts. So, WHAT'S THE ANSWER?

Applying brute force and unabiguous moral clarity to the rogues. Tolerating NO lawlessness. Rudy Giuliani cleaned up NYC this way. For too long, Nawlins has tolerated too much mayhem and lawlessness. They're suddenly reaping what for decades they sowed.

I KNOW: I lived in Nawlins, years back - when it was safer! And even then - nearly 30 years ago - you could walk 2-3 blocks in any direction and be in danger of losing your life. Part of the reason was that desperately poor and neglected people were scattered thoughout Nawlins: it's part of the levee/slavery heritage; except for the 9th Ward and the newer projects, there WERE no "ghettos"; poor people lived adjacent to planations all over the city, plantations that grew like spokes off the levees. WHITE FLIGHT since the 1970's has exacerbated the situation, and made the CITY of New Orleans poorer and poorer. The local and state government's response to this was permissiveness and the pernicious policies of LOW EXPECTATIONS. The result: a profusion of bad behavior swamped the urban poor: high incidence of teen pregnancy, of highschool dropouts; and crime.

This was NOT benign neglect. Neglect is never benign. It was MALIGNANT NEGLECT. The poor were neglected as much as the levees.

Now, eveyone should see that it was not benign; we should see that DECADES of laissez faire policies and (for all intents and purposes permitted) corruption and ineptness (born of low expectations) have left the ENTIRE city vulnerable to its worst elements - elements which probably INTENDED FROM THE VERY FIRST HURRICANE WARNING to remioan in the otherwise evacuated city JUST IN ORDER to loot.

MORE than the levees will have to be rebuilt.

The city will have to rebuild a sense of moral outrage and an intolerance for crime and anti-social behavior. Only a chastened city, with new found moral courage born of moral outrage will have the fortitude to rebuild. The city whose charm exploited the sexy allure of the liminal and the spicy scent of danger, must re-awaken or redevelop in itself more temperate and more subtle and more sophisticated enticements.

In Nawlins - a city of rich blends, this will lead to the creation of a new and "odd blend." There will have to be more overtly Puritanical standards, and an more intensified Protestant work ethic (in business and government). And this must be achieved while protecting the "le bonnes temps roulets" attitude and the cultural gumbo/racial melange which almost always ONLY arises from a relatively open society which encourages cultural exchange and experimentation.

I believe this new hybrid can be bred. If it doesn't, then the literal and figurative bayou will reclaim Nawlins, swallow it up and leave posterity only a legend of what once was.

I'm praying that the people of New Orleans (and the surrounding parishes) rise to the occasion. Just as the levees are rebuilt and the floodwaters held back, so too can their churches and schools and civic organizations "rise up" and take control, drain the city of its foul waters, and revitalize that lovely, that sweet, that sweet and pungent tropical city. Together - with a new spirit that is as strong as the mighty Mississippi, and that is just as intolerant of crime, corruption and ineptness, and that has an ambition as strong as the region is diverse - they can cook up a future as deliciously rich and as fascinatingly complex and as tantalizingly satisfying as any gumbo or etouffe or bourbon cocktail, and as intriguing as any Jazz improvization, and as complex as the jasmin, honeysuckle and stale-beer laden music-filled air itself.

It won't be easy. In the meantime, I'm praying for all the suffering people, in Nawlins and along the Gulf Coast - that their suffering is soon ended. Godspeed.

UPDATE: Nicole Gelinas at CITY JOURNAL (hat tip POWERLINE) has a great essay which reiterates some of my themes. Here's an excerpt:

The vicious looters aren’t the face of New Orleans’ poor blacks. Their victims are: the thousands of New Orleanians who made their way to shelter before the storm, and who rescued others and brought them to shelter during and after the storm—but who now cannot get the help they desperately need. This week’s looting was predictable. When Hurricane Georges, another potentially catastrophic storm (it spared New Orleans at the last minute) was about to hit in 1998, I foolishly refused to evacuate my Uptown apartment. More than one person said I should evacuate not due to the storm, but because looters would terrorize the city afterward. Was this week’s looting preventable? Failure to put violent criminals behind bars in peacetime has led to chaos in disaster.

Like I said. And RTWT. More HERE.


... According to Sean Callebs of CNN who was reporting from the scene as buses were turned away (c.11PM local time)! According to a polceman Callebs interviewed, a local Fire Marshall said the 'Dome was FULL UP, and local police had to enforce this decision. Shocking. FEMA - and state authorities - who said that the 'Dome could accommodate 20,000 seem incompetent.


BBC: The first cases of BSE or "mad cow disease" could have been caused by animal feed contaminated with human remains, says a controversial theory. It proposes that some raw materials for fertiliser and feed imported from the Indian subcontinent in the 60s and 70s contained human bones and soft tissue. ... The UK imported hundreds of thousands of tonnes of whole bones, crushed bones and carcass parts in the 1960s and 1970s to make fertiliser as well as meat and bone meal feed. Nearly 50% came from Bangladesh, India and Pakistan, where gathering large bones and carcasses from the countryside and from rivers is an established local trade. ... Human remains have been described in material delivered to processing mills. And during the 1960s, human material was confirmed in consignments of bones shipped into French docks from Asia. A spokesman for the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said it went along with the findings of a 2001 report into the origin of BSE, where a favoured hypothesis was that BSE had its origins with scrapie. But the spokesman said the department was open minded about new findings. ... only a tiny amount of contaminated brain tissue is needed to transmit human CJD to nonhuman primates in the lab. On the other hand, nothing is known about the transmission of human prion diseases to cattle. It was shown in the 1980s that prion proteins could survive the entire chain of processes leading to the production of animal feed in an infectious form. The feeding of mammalian meat and bone meal to farm animals has been banned since 1996. Yet sporadic cases of BSE have occurred in the UK and in Europe, where regulations were also tightened, since the ban. These cases remain unexplained.


The WASHPOST writes it up today. I wrote about it three days ago. Stay tuned.


From the facts EU ROTA marshalls, one must conclude that Clinton ignored the dangers on this front as he did the dangers from jihadoterrorism. I'LL GO FURTHER: I believe that - in twenty or thirty years - most historians will look back on his presidency as 8 wasted years in which we mispent the peace dividend, did nothing on emerging crises in energy and immigration and heathcare - while we dreamed a silly dream of a "new economy" as the jihadoterrorists attacked us over and over and over again. IOW: it was an eight year disaster.

Thursday, September 01, 2005


Gentleman never strike a man when he is down. The jihadists are NOT gentleman. That's why I think the Jihadists are probably trying very VERY hard to hit us right now, right here at home, while we're down. After all, due to Katrina and the ensuing NOLA levee failures, we have just sustained a major jolt: a key section of an entire region is demolished and reeling; oil markets are tense, and domestic oil refining and mining is very STRAINED; National Guard resources are starined as they shift to help; a million people are displaced. These pains and losses are effecting the entire nation, in negative way, economically and emotionally.

If I were a jihadist I'd say a attempting a major terrorist attack against NYC or DC or Houston or a major port RIGHT NOW would be very VERY high on my list. Because we are already reeling, the effects of a major terrorist attack (or a series of minor ones) would be compounded dramatically - in real and emotional terms. The would be more terrifying than ever. I hope the DHS and FBI are listening...


BETSY'S PAGE has a fascinating post on an article about the VAST amounts of oil shale in the USA, deposits which contain 100 times the amount of oil as there is in Saudi Arabia. She believes that we will eventually find a way to extract the oil which is both clean and economical - especially if oil stays around $70 a barrel.

There's ANOTHER vast reserve of oil-containing reserves in the USA in the form of COAL. And the technology to convert coal into oil ALREADY exists - it's been around since the 1930's:

"REUTERS" - 8/26/05 - HELENA, Montana - Montana's governor wants to solve America's rising energy costs using a technology discovered in Germany 80 years ago that converts coal into gasoline, diesel and aviation fuel. The Fischer-Tropsch technology, discovered by German researchers in 1923 and later used by the Nazis to convert coal into wartime fuels, was not economical as long as oil cost less than $30 a barrel. But with US crude oil now hitting more than double that price, Gov. Brian Schweitzer's plan is getting more attention across the country and some analysts are taking him very seriously. Montana is "sitting on more energy than they have in the Middle East," Schweitzer told Reuters in an interview this week. "I am leading this country in this desire and demand to convert coal into gasoline, diesel and aviation fuel. We can do it in Montana for $1 per gallon," he said. "We can do it cheaper than importing oil from the sheiks, dictators, rats and crooks that we're bringing it from right now." The governor estimated the cost of producing a barrel of oil through the Fischer-Tropsch method at $32, and said that with its 120 billion tons of coal -- a little less than a third of the U.S total -- Montana could supply the entire United States with its aviation, gas and diesel fuel for 40 years without creating environmental damage. An entry level Fischer-Tropsch plant producing 22,000 barrels a day would cost about $1.5 billion, he said.


My heart goes out to all who are suffering as a result of the Hurricane and ensuing floods. The devastation along the Gulf Coast is mind-boggling, and heart-rending.

I'm especially pained by the devastation of New Orleans. Years ago, I lived there and I still have friends there. And though I have been back frequently, in some ways I have never left. The city stays with you - not unlike my other favorite town, Paris; as Hem' wrote, "Paris is a moveable feast." So is New Orleans. I pray that the city comes back - MO' BETTA DEN EVA! In some ways, it will. Buildings and levees will be rebuilt. Other losses can never be regained: the loss of life. But losing New Orleans would be as tragic to our nation's culture and cultural history as Italy losing Venice. That's a loss no one can allow to happen. We won't.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005


AP / Gadsden Times:

The Bush administration is lobbying other countries to force Iran before the U.N. Security Council for punitive sanctions over its nuclear program, a top State Department official said Wednesday. ... "We fully expect that the IAEA will refer this issue to the United Nations Security Council, where it should be," [Nick] Burns [Undersecretary of State] said. "Iran must (face the) judgment of the international community, now that it has acted in defiance of the international community," Burns said.

After that... stay tuned. This is only the FIRST step. It's gonna be an interesting Autumn!



The Washington Post is trumpeting its latest poll, showing President Bush's approval rating at an "all-time low" of 45%. Actually, though, considering that the poll was of "random adults," conducted over four evenings, three of them on the weekend, with only 29% Republicans in the survey, the result is hardly surprising. In fact, Bush's approval ratings on the key issues has barely budged compared to prior Post/ABC surveys. Here is what is interesting, in the present context: the issue on which Bush scores worst is not Iraq, the economy or Social Security. It is immigration. News accounts often implicitly assume that more or less all of those who are critical of the administration are on the administration's left. In fact, though, on the issue where the President's position is least popular, the criticism comes almost entirely from the right, some of it from people who on other issues describe themselves as moderates or even liberals.

In line with that analysis, I also think that a lot of Bush's relatively low approval ratings (BELOW 50%) are because many on the right think he's way too soft on North Korea and Iran and the "Iraqi insurgents" and Abbas, and because of his utter lack of federal spending restraint. The low numbers on Iraq, especially, are low - I believe - because a lot of HAWKS (like me) think we should be MUCH more ruthless and use MUCH more massive deadly violence against the enemy there.

THIS BEARS REPEATING: the folks at the WASHPOST are certainly smart enough to know that their sample is skewed, yet they deliberately present the results in a way which depicts them as accurate. Because they are smart enough to know that a skewed sample will yield a skewed result, and because they deliberately present that skewed result as an accurate one, THIS MUST BE SEEN AS A PREMEDIATED LIE AND PURE UNADULTERATED ANTI-WAR/ANTI-BUSH LEFT-WING PROPAGANDA - and, IMHO, an instance of MSM distortion as rank as the BOGUS "TANG" documents which cost Dan Rather his job. Heads should roll at the WASHPOST - but I'm NOT holding my breath. BTW/FWIW: when it comes to lies and distortions in its news pages, the WASHPOST is not as bad as the NYTIMES.


From Drudge: The Pentagon late Tuesday ordered five Navy ships and eight maritime rescue teams to the Gulf Coast to bolster relief operations as worsening conditions overwhelmed theinitial response.

VARIFRANK: You decide which of the two has fed more people in need, Our Navy or George Soros. Our Navy or Bono. Our Navy or the UN. Our Navy or the ‘Peace Corps.’ Thank God for the United States Navy. Despite what "Mother Sheehan" has told you, Louisiana is worth saving. Mississippi is worth saving. Alabama is worth saving. This country is worth saving. Do not let despair drive you to defeat, do not let the quitters win.
He's got more - go there and read it. I'll only add this: the US Military - as VARIFRANK reminds us: a miltary savaged as mercenaries by the Left - saved more lives ravaged by the recent tsunami than any other organization in the world. On top of their national defense responsibilities. God Bless Our Troops.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005



These were side-by-side headlines in today's NYTIMES:

5 Highly Placed Lebanese Detained in Ex-Premier's Death
Airstrikes by U.S. Continue Near Syria Border
These two headlines prove we are steadily turning up the heat on the Baathists in Syria.

Don't be surpised if Assad is toppled - by a peaceful popular uprising, or by a more violent one, one similar to what happened to Ceausescu [BBC: "After the euphoria of Solidarity's victory in free elections in Poland and the Velvet Revolution in Prague, this was different. The Romanian revolution was the last, and the bloodiest, in the whole region. It came to a head on Christmas Day, when the dictator and his wife were executed." ], or by a military coup - before the end of the year.

I suggest this will probably happen sooner rather than later because Syrians and Syrian Kurds must know that democracy is taking shape in Afghanistan and Iraq and Lebanon and Egypt, and they MUST want some, too. The more precarious Assad and his Baathist Party seems, the more likely his tyrannized people will come to believe that they can bring his evil regime down. By prosecuting his henchmen in Lebanon, and by bombing the border he shares with Iraq, (and by secretly encouraging the Syrian Kurds to rise up), we can hasten the day when Syrians will throw off their shackles and become democratic.

As the wise man says: FASTER, PLEASE!

UPDATE - 8/31 - MORE HERE from PRAIRIEPUNDIT, and a report he cites from the WASHPOST which shows that we ARE WINNING in the Sunni Arab Triangle and that the Sunni Arabs are now fighting the foreign jihadis and how our crackdown on the Syrian border is a part of this effort - which seems to be dealing a death-blow to the "insurgents." Here's a snippet:
The clashes between Sunni Arab tribes and insurgents, coupled with growing vows by Iraq's Sunni minority to turn out in force for national voting in the coming months, coincided with U.S. hopes for defusing the two-year-old insurgency. U.S. military leaders have repeatedly expressed optimism that public anger at insurgent violence would deprive insurgents of their base of support. A tribal leader near the Syrian border, Muhammed Mahallawi, said his Albu Mahal tribe began the latest fighting against Zarqawi's insurgents after they kidnapped and killed 31 members of his tribe to punish them for joining the Iraqi security forces. "We decided either we force them out of the city or we kill them," with the support of U.S. bombing, Mahallawi said by telephone.

Sunni Arab tribes in the western province of Anbar have clashed sporadically with Zarqawi's organization since at least May, usually in revenge for killings of tribe members accused of collaborating with U.S. forces or the Iraqi government. This month in Ramadi, the capital of Anbar, tribes took up arms to block Zarqawi's group from enforcing his ultimatum for all Shiite Muslim families to leave the city. Fighting there killed several fighters on both sides. Local officials said Tuesday that Mahallawi's tribe and the insurgents had been fighting near the border for at least three days. Rawi, the emergency room director, said at least 61 people had been killed since the fighting began. The majority of the dead Tuesday were in the Western-style clothes and athletic shoes often worn by Zarqawi's fighters, Rawi said.
We are winning! UPDATE #2 - 8/31 - Saad S. Khan, The Daily Star / Bangladesh:

After Iraq and Afgha-nistan whose turn is it, is a moot question being debated about not only in the power corridors of the Middle East but also at the kerb-side tea cafes. Can the United States be really serious when it lists Syria among the states sponsoring terrorism? Admittedly the Baath old guard of Syria is not happy at the prospect of sharing the fate of their peers in Iraq, and the present Baghdad regime's allegations that most foreign terrorists are crossing over from Syria, is anything but exaggeration. Yet it hardly is a sufficient instigation for the US forces to embroil in another country as the political, human, and financial costs of another parallel adventure are domestically indefensible. Like Saddam in his last days in power, Bashar al Assad is now literally dancing on US beckoning -- withdrawing his country's 29-year military presence in Lebanon on a single phone call -- but trans-border intrusions are totally beyond his control. His own lack of character and cowardice being comparable only to those of Saddam, his border forces lack the will and the capacity to take the militants head on. The professionalism of his troops is restricted to torturing and interrogating intellectuals and human rights activists, that of his intelligence officers to murdering people in Lebanon, and that of his border security guards to gazing at the Israeli girls across the barbed wire. The days of Syria acting as a regional bully are history. No country in the Middle East can remain immune from the winds of reform. Bashar, therefore, has joined the reform bandwagon, ending up only in reforming the methods of tyranny.

... The US decision-makers are not so naïve not to realize the fact that democracy in Iraq will remain an elusive unless it is firmly rooted in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Syria. The rest of the region will then follow in domino effect. And that it is only for Syria that use of force will be necessary to that end. ... If Bush and Blair are sincere in their belief that Saddam's removal was morally justified, then one should rest assured that a Syria expedition is a question of "when" and not "if."

I agree. And "when" is sooner then anyone thinks. Stay tuned.

Monday, August 29, 2005

"LIVING CONSTITUTION" HYPOCRISY: Roe v. Wade is written in stone!

WIKIPEDIA: "The "Living Constitution" is one name for the theory of Constitutional interpretation - particularly in relation to American Constitutional jurisprudence - which holds that the meaning of the text should grow and evolve with society, paying heed to 'the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society' a phrase taken from the Warren Court-era case Trop v. Dulles, 356 U.S. 86 (1958). The Living Constitution can be seen as standing in opposition to originalism and strict constructionism, ..."

The Left's praise for the "LIVING CONSTITUTION" approach to intrepreting the US Constitution of course ONLY applies to aspects of the Constitution that they don't like, and want to change - like the 2nd Amendment, for example. But to the Left, things like ROE v. Wade are of course written in STONE! (This in spite of the FACT that "VIABILITY" is now something entirely dfferent than it was when the decision was made!)

Another thing the Left thinks is a precedent written in stone: the "Right to Privacy."

But doesn't the Living Constitution approach mean that precedent should be broken if and when society has changed; isn't that what a "Living Constitution" actually means !? Then again, if the constitution can mean whatever a majority of the SCOTUS thinks it means then it means nothing, and cannot be a functional constitution - for to function, a constitution must be the reliably firm and consistent "bedrock" upon which the legal code is based; a constitution which is too changeable or too fluid can no more support the foundation of the legal code than a swamp near a flood plain can provide a base for the foundation of a reliably long-lasting building.

The Left's selective adherence to the "Living Constitution" is so hypocritical it laughable: It is so unprincipled that it's preposterous. Simply put: To the Leftist, adhering to precedent is ONLY of paramount importance when the precedent is a decision THEY won! And that's pure hypocrisy and old-fashioned demagoguery at it's worst.

Click HERE and HERE and HERE to read short articles on Scalia's critique of the LIVING CONSTITUTION approach.

[ASIDE: the Left's attraction to the Living Constitution approach is related to the Left's fixation on relativism. The Left thinks that values are NOT universal or absolute. The Left believes that values are relative - they're defined historically, and culturally. As moral relativists they have no problem agitating for more flexible and ever-shifting interpretations of the Constitution - as long as they advance their socialistic utopianistic policies. Leftists always subordinate means to goals - as when they advocate quotas and set-asides as if it was okay to use racism to end racism. The Right believes that passing new legislation is the proper way to change the legal codes and bring about "social change in a given society in ways which reflect the times," and that if that legislation is judged to be unconstitutional, that then the people have the option of amending the constitution. Judical activism - or "legislating from the bench" - is UNCONSTITUTIONAL, and a Living Constitution is merely an rationalization for changing the constitution in an unconstitutional way.]



(1) ECONOPUNDIT posts a chart which shows that oil-pipeline attacks in Iraq have steadily declined to their lowest point in the entire war. Since this is a MAJOR target of the jihadoterrorists, this PROVES that they are NOT as effective as they once were. They are LOSING.

(3) AND then there's this: US military WOUNDED has STEADILY DECLINED over the last FIVE (5) CONSECUTIVE MONTHS! Contrary to what anti-war Leftists like Sheehan and the MSM want you to believe, the enemy is weakening and there's BEEN NO QUANTITATIVE INCREASE IN THE ENEMY'S EFFECTIVENESS OR STRENGTH OVER THE LAST TWO YEARS - 2 YEARS IN WHICH THE IRAQIS HAVE MADE SUBSTANTIAL POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC PROGRESS. The enemy is losing territory and political clout within Iraq. They are losing. And if we stay the course, the Iraqis who want democracy will win.

Nevertheless, we can expect attacks to increase before the referendum - and casualties to remain high - even until next election roll around, too. Why? Because the enemy doesn't want the Iraqi people to establish a democracy, and the enemy is willing to commit terroristic acts of genocide to attempt to prevent it from happening..

As long as Bush is resolute, the enemy will eventually lose and the Iraqis will soon get a democracy of their own design. The Left doesn't seem to care if the Iraqis get democracy, or not. Which is despicable. (And it is despicable that the MSM doesn't report these facts. I wonder why? Could it be BIAS!? Of course it is - and the MSM is consistently biased in ways that always favors the Left and the anti-war crowd.)



Parts of the Iraqi draft constitution submitted on Sunday are a "recipe for chaos", Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa has warned. He told the BBC the Arab League shared Sunni Muslim concerns over federalism and the fact the charter does not identify Iraq as an Arab country.

Listening to this guy's advice on constitutionalism and democracy would be like taking advice on business ethics and frugality from convicted businessmen Dennis Koslowsi and Bernie Ebbers. Besides, Moussa is probably NOT an unbiased bystander: he's probably a Sunni Arab.

Sunday, August 28, 2005


BBC: "Boost to CO2 mass extinction idea" -

A computer simulation of the Earth's climate 250 million years ago suggests that global warming triggered the so-called "great dying". A dramatic rise in carbon dioxide caused temperatures to soar to 10 to 30 degrees Celsius higher than today, say US researchers. The warming had a profound impact on the oceans, cutting off oxygen to the lower depths and extinguishing most lifeforms, they write in the latest issue of Geology. The research adds to the growing body of evidence that higher temperatures, rather than a giant space rock hitting the planet, led to the greatest mass extinction in history.

Musta been all those SUV's burning all that petroleum the BusHitler Crime Family was having Halliburton extract. Er ... um, but there weren't even humans around then, let alone any fossil-burning industry. So... er, maybe, er ... um global warming is NATURAL!? Hmm. And then there's the theory that particulates in the air causes global COOLING (more HERE). GEEZ: maybe it's all more complicated than the eco-fascists say it is!? Ya think!?


And, I'm praying for the city I love! Take care.


1 - "Land for Peace" is a cool idea - but the Israelis have given up and land and NOT gotten any peace. The deal with Egypt has led to a "cold peace/war."

2 - A "Two-State Solution" is abstractly practical, but actually it requires that the Israelis have democratic republicans (small "d" small "r") on the other side of the border and not jihadoterrorists bent on anti-Semitic genocide. Israel can never practically accept a Taliban-like or Iranian-style theocratic terrorocracy on it's borders. No nation should expect Israel to accept on her borders what they would reject on theirs.

3 - If Israel is - and can be, and can remain - 20% Arab Muslim, then why does Gaza or the West bank have to be "JUDENREIN?!" The fact that Palestinian Arabs demand that all Jews leave the territories PROVES that the Arabs are racist genocidal maniacs - and Israel will never ever have peace with the likes of them. When Arabs and Jews can live side by side in Gaza and the West Bank as they do in Israel, then there will be peace.

4 - The "ethnic cleansing" of Gaza was morally reprehensible and it will only lead to more terror.

HOWEVER: because the military assets of Israel can now be deployed more efficaciously (especially in relation to the major populations centers and larger borders, the REPRISALS for future jihadist attacks will be BRUTAL.

That's why it's ESSENTIAL and URGENT that the PNA confronts the jihadoterrorists - NOW! If the PNA doesn't crackdown on the jihadis - (and UP TO NOW, there is NO reason to expect they will; there is no reason to expect them to be HALF as tough on their jihadists as the Afghanis and the Iraqis and the Saudis and the Pakistanis are) - and if the jihadis stage a major attack against Israel, (or re-mount a lengthy intifada - "intifada #3"), then the jihadis will be counter-attacked by Israel and they will die, AND NOW, the PNA (not Israel) will have to pick up the pieces. If they can find them.

I hope that the PNA establishes the rule of law and that the peace process continues. I doubt it that they will.


Then CLICK HERE for an eye-opener. The bias is BLATANT to ther point of being PREPOSTEROUS! How do these Left-wing anti-Bush "journalists" look at themselves in the mirror!?