A lot of hay has been made over this quote from barrack Obama.
ď...just to take a, sort of a realist perspective...thereís a lot of change going on outside of the Court, um, that, that judges essentially have to take judicial notice of. I mean youíve got World War II, youíve got uh, uh, uh, the doctrines of Nazism, that, that we are fighting against, that start looking uncomfortably similar to what we have going on, back here at home.Ē
Now I could pile on to Obama, and it would be easy. I wonít, though, because I can think of a perfect example in which the Court did exactly that in the midst of WWII Ė the famous flag salute case, WEST VIRGINIA STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION ET AL. v. BARNETTE (319 U.S. 624). Consider this ďmoney quoteĒ from the decision, which is exactly the sort of thing that Obama is talking about.
As governmental pressure toward unity becomes greater, so strife becomes more bitter as to whose unity it shall be. Probably no deeper division of our people could proceed from any provocation than from finding it necessary to choose what doctrine and whose program public educational officials shall compel youth to unite in embracing. Ultimate futility of such attempts to compel coherence is the lesson of every such effort from the Roman drive to stamp out Christianity as a disturber of its pagan unity, the Inquisition, as a means to religious and dynastic unity, the Siberian exiles as a means to Russian unity, n to the fast failing efforts of our present totalitarian enemiesose who begin coercive elimination of dissent soon find themselves exterminating dissenters. Compulsory unification of opinion achieves only the unanimity of the graveyard.
Indeed, one can reasonably presume that this is the sort of judicial notice to which Obama was referring. The sort of political conformity that the mandatory flag salute required was eerily similar to that required by the Hitler regime, even if more benignly intended. Similarly, the internment of citizens by the Roosevelt administration based upon race and ethnicity in the name of national security did bear a parallel to the much more extreme actions of the Nazis.
Unfortunately for supporters of Obama, other recently disclose Obama quotes signal a dangerous propensity to disregard the text of the Constitution in favor of some other, extra-constitutional scheme designed to dispossess citizens of their property for purposes of redistribution. That is where we need to focus, not upon this relatively benign statement.
Imagine this Ė a major news organization has a tape of a presidential candidate making highly inflammatory Ė some would even argue hateful Ė statements about a close American ally while toasting a personal friend who was also closely tied to a terrorist organization. Thatís something they would release in a heartbeat, right?
Not, however, if the news organization is the Los Angeles Times and the candidate is Barack Obama. Then they would hold on to the tape, having determined that the people have no right to know the full contents of the tape.
The Los Angeles Times is refusing to release a videotape that it says shows Barack Obama praising a Chicago professor who was an alleged mouthpiece for the Palestine Liberation Organization while it was a designated terrorist group in the 1970s and '80s.
According an LA Times article written by Peter Wallsten in April, Obama was a "friend and frequent dinner companion" of Rashid Khalidi, who from 1976 to1982 was reportedly a director of the official Palestinian press agency, WAFA, which was operating in exile from Beirut with the PLO.
In the article -- based on the videotape obtained by the Times -- Wallsten said Obama addressed an audience during a 2003 farewell dinner for Khalidi, who was Obama's colleague at the University of Chicago, before his departure for Columbia University in New York. Obama said his many talks with Khalidi and his wife Mona stood as "consistent reminders to me of my own blind spots and my own biases."
Now one would think that the paper would be willing to offer documentation proving those charges Ė but they are not. Indeed, they now claim (after having repeatedly spun the decision in other ways) that they have an obligation to honor a secrecy promise made to an anonymous source. Odd, isnít it, that the paper wonít do that with Top Secret government documents, bu will do so to protect a presidential candidate from his own words and record.
Well, the McCain camp has called out the LA Times over this journalistic malpractice in the name of electing their preferred candidate, and rightly so. After all, who knows what other bombshells might be in the tape?
Saw a clip from the tape. Reason we canít release it is because statements Obama said to rile audience up during toast. He congratulates Khalidi for his work saying ďIsrael has no God-given right to occupy PalestineĒ plus thereís been ďgenocide against the Palestinian people by Israelis.Ē
In other words, Barack Obama engaged in blood libel against the Jews in defense of those whose stated objective is the destruction of the Jewish homeland. Inded, his statement can only be understood as one supportive of that goal. Thatís why the paper wonít allow the tape Ė or a transcript of the tape Ė to be released to the public. It would result in the desertion of Barack Oama by those who recognize that Israel is Americaís only reliable ally in the region. He could kiss the Jewish vote goodbye Ė and with it Florida.
Interestingly enough, the sort of rhetoric Obama espoused that night should ring a bell for most Americans. It is precisely the same sort of rhetoric directed by his pastor, jeremiah Wright, against Israel from the pulpit and in his church newsletter (in which he reprinted Hamas propaganda). Doesnít that make the Wright connection incredibly relevant?
Oh, and by the way, LGF has a guest list for the event.
Hugh Hewitt, who may have been the closest of all other bloggers to Dean, writes the following tribute.
My friend and colleague Dean Barnett died today, and the world is a much poorer place for it. As anyone who listened to him on my radio show or read his work at Soxblog, here or at the Weekly Standard knows, and as everyone who had the great, great pleasure of knowing Dean will attest, Dean's combination of sparking intelligence and enormous good humor made him one fo the most memorable of friends. What too few people know, though, is what a kind, extraordinarily giving and compassionate man he was. Dean loved people and he loved this country and threw himself into every cause.
Be sure to read it all.
I'd like to encourage others to contribute to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in his honor. Let's help eradicate this killer in his honor.
I said it over the summer when he was first indicted -- Ted Stevens' corruption necessitates his departure from the US Senate.
There remain serious issues for appeal, though, given the amount of prosecutorial misconduct during this trial. He may yet walk, or die before seeing the inside of a prison cell (he is 84, after all).
Öthe Republicans deserve to lose it for not doing a better job of defeating Stevens in the primary.
They are right -- we deserve to lose the seat for not getting rid of him.
However, I must admit that I still hopes he wins and takes his seat next January -- after which he should submit his immediate resignation from office. At that point, Alaska's Governor will appoint a Republican replacement -- and we could see a scenario in which Gov. Sarah Palin becomes Senator Sarah Palin -- making her the GOP front-runner for 2012.
Barney Frank will have a big influence if the Dems continue to hold the House and Senate Ė and will be even more powerful if Barack Obama wins the White House.
Case in point: Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), who has told a hometown newspaper House Democrats will seek a 25 percent reduction in defense spending upon Obama's ascension. Oh, and stand by for a big tax hike.
* * *
"We'll have to raise taxes, ultimately," Frank said. "Not now, but eventually."
So forget all that stuff about higher taxes only for the top 5% of earners and cuts for the rest of us Ė your taxes will be going up, one way or another.
Especially as they define ďthe wealthyĒ down from those couples making $250K to those making $200K and finally to those couples making $100K Ė in other words, a good chunk of two-income middle class families.
And while my taxes wonít be increased (my wife and I have only one income, and I am a teacher so donít have to worry about making anywhere near any of those figures above), I will be paying higher prices when I head to the store and seeing smaller pay raises as the economy slows and my district lacks the ability to increase my compensation at the 3% or 4% annual increase we usually see. Anyone who actually understands the economics of tax increases knows that is how it always works.
And as for those defense cuts -- they are clearly a case of CHANGE that puts the safety of this country last in the HOPE that our nation's enemies will play nice as we disarm.
I noted how Joe the Plumber was attacked for participating in the democratic process by asking a pointed question of one of the two major party candidates for president. What we now find out is that laws were broken in the process. Where are the howls of outrage from the media and the activists who object to spying on terrorists intent upon attacking American interests and their associates?
Public records requested by The Dispatch disclose that information on Wurzelbacherís driverís license or his sport-utility vehicle was pulled from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles database three times shortly after the debate.
Information on Wurzelbacher was accessed by accounts assigned to the office of Ohio Attorney General Nancy H. Rogers, the Cuyahoga County Child Support Enforcement Agency and the Toledo Police Department.
It has not been determined who checked on Wurzelbacher, or why. Direct access to driverís license and vehicle registration information from BMV computers is restricted to legitimate law enforcement and government business.
His criminal records and child support records were also accessed during the same time period.
Now Obamaís campaign denounced folks looking into the presidential candidateís passport file (as well as those of Hillary Clinton and John McCain) just a few months back, and people were fired. Why are they silent about this breach of privacy against a private citizen simply because he engaged in protected First Amendment activity?
UPDATE: This does raise an interesting question -- if it is so easy to get a look at the records of a private citizen who has the audacity to exercise his First Amendment rights during a political campaign, why can the American public still see a copy of Barack Obama's original birth certificate? After all, receiving indisputable evidence that Obama is a constitutionally eligible for the office he seeks would certainly seem to be a much more serious matter of public concern than anything about Joe the Plumber.
The polling numbers say we can do it Ė are we motivated enough to carry it off?
U.S. Rep. Nick Lampson, D-Stafford, trailed Republican challenger Pete Olson by 17 percentage points early last week, according to the survey by Zogby International. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 5 percentage points.
* * *
In the 22nd Congressional District, represented by Lampson after the 2006 resignation of Republican powerhouse Tom DeLay, only 5 percent of Republican voters in the survey had defected to Lampson.
Lampson led Olson among independents, 45 percent to 39 percent. But only 16 percent in the poll identified themselves as independent; while 52 percent said Republican and 32 percent said Democrat.
Weíve been stuck with this lemon since Tom DeLay decided to go out on his own ego trip two years ago. He hasnít been much of a centrist, and it is clear that he hasnít voted the way his constituents wanted him to, despite his claims to the contrary. If he had, he would not be losing by 17 points in the poll. And while Pete Olson was not my primary candidate 9and was not even among my top three choices in the 10 person race), Iíve gladly supported him this fall.
And folks, make sure you vote the straight GOP ticket. After all, we have a whole host of down-ballot races for judges and county-wide offices that are important for us to hold on to. If you donít vote, they will go by default to the Democrats.
Want to bet we would hear shrill shrieks of R-R-R-A-A-A-C-C-C-I-I-I-S-S-S-M-M-M from the Obama campaign, the DNC, assorted race hos, and the MSM?
But somehow they find this acceptable.
First he tried to justify it in terms of it being Halloween.
He says "it should be seen as art, and as within the month of October. It's Halloween, it's time to be scary it's time to be spooky."
But then he tried to argue that it was OK because Palin, after all, is only white.
"I know if we had done it with Barack Obama, people would've probably thrown things through our windows," Morrisette said. "The image of a hanged black man is a lot more intense than the image of a hanged white woman -- for our country -- in the history of our country."
Yep Ė it is that racial double standard again.
So got that Ė the tolerant Left thinks thinks it is ďartĒ to depict the murder of white women with the wrong political opinions. But there are some lines that they refuse to cross Ė even though we are oftent old that art is supposed to be ďedgyĒ and ďcross boundariesĒ. I guess those are only conservative boundaries. Because please notice that Joe Biden isnít depicted as a part of the display, though John McCain is.
And its just as well Ė even if Morrisetteís ďartĒ were to include a hanging Barack Obama, and it were accepted as part of the spirit of the season, there would still be a serious uproar. After all, calling such a display ďspookyĒ would be simply one more opportunity for the usual suspects to holler R-R-R-A-A-A-C-C-C-I-I-I-S-S-S-M-M-M!
Havenít had a chance to post for several days, so I have not had the opportunity to comment on the news that the reported assault on a McCain campaign volunteer was false. I hold her in equal contempt.
Police say a campaign volunteer confessed to making up a story that a mugger attacked her and cut the letter B in her face after seeing her McCain bumper sticker; now sheís facing charges.
At a news conference this afternoon, officials said they believe that Ashley Toddís injuries were self-inflicted.
Todd, 20, of Texas, is now facing charges for filing a false report to police.
First, Iím glad she is facing charges. Second, I hope she is convicted, and gets the maximum sentence. Her offense struck directly at the heart of race relations and the political process. In my eyes she is no better than the student in Illinois who faked anti-Muslim hate crimes.
Oh, yweah -- and I urge Texas A&M to expel her from the university as a way of protecting its good name.
And sadly, her actions serve to discredit the dozens of documented crimes (including gunshots at the Straight Talk Express, which one commenter sought to justify here) committed against McCain supporters.
Just realized I hadn't posted these -- so here are the most recent results from the Watcher's Council.
No, not the GOP.
You know, stuff like this.
The home of a Central Florida Republican headquarters manager was shot up and damaged over his support of Sen. John McCain, the man told police.
Letís see Ė weíve had fire bombings of signs, assaults on folks engaged in peaceful political advocacy, an attack on the Straight Talk Express and now gun violence against a private home. Looks to me like too many members of the Obamanation are too unstable to be allowed anywhere near the reins of power.
A 20-year-old woman who was robbed at an ATM in Bloomfield was also maimed by her attacker, apparently because of her political views, Pittsburgh police said.
According to WTAE's news exchange partners at the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Ashley Todd, of College Station, Texas, was using an ATM at Liberty Avenue and Pearl Street just before 9 p.m. Wednesday when a man approached her and put a knife to her throat.
Police spokeswoman Diane Richard said the robber took $60 from Todd, then became angry when he saw a McCain bumper sticker on the victim's car. The attacker then punched and kicked the victim, before using the knife to scratch the letter "B" into her face, Richard said.
Sounds like another Obama supporter, with so high a degree of tolerance for other peoples' views that he is willing to do bodily harm to anyone so intolerant as to disagree with him. While some might argue that Obama and Biden are not responsible for this attack by a criminal thug, I disagree -- after all, McCain and Palin have been held responsible for words allegedly (but in at least some cases not actually) spoken by a supporter. Those assigning such responsibility have been the Democrat candidates themselves. By their own standards, therefore, they are responsible for this action by one of their criminal followers.
Will the MSM hold their feet to the fire on this one? I'm guessing the answer is NO.
Just a reminder about his political philosophy.
But donít worry Ė if you are reading this blog you wouldnít have had to worry about anything like that. You would probably resist the political reeducation camps he and his confreres proposed Ė and so would have been one of the 25 million Americans they proposed doing away with in a fashion reminiscent of Stalin, Hitler, or Pol Pot.
But then again, he was more than willing to see innocents killed as a part of his ďrevolutionĒ.
Iíve heard a lot of crazy stuff out of the media, but never anything as bizarre as this illogical statement regarding newly released tapes of John McCain from his POW days.
The video portrays the Republican as a hero but the message may be tarnished as he is filmed smoking a cigarette.
Excuse me? Cigarette smoking by a prisoner FOUR DECADES AGO might tarnish his image, or somehow devalue the heroism of the man? Are these folks on crack?
Crystal Mangum, the lying, drug-addled stripper whose false accusations disrupted the lives and tarnished the reputations of innocent Duke University students now has a book out. And it is clear from some of the claims she makes in the book and related interviews that the story she is peddling today bears no more relationship to the truth than did her initial accusations.
The woman who North Carolina prosecutors determined falsely accused three Duke lacrosse players of raping her at a team party maintains in a new memoir that she was attacked. Crystal Mangum, who appeared publicly Thursday for the first time since making the allegations more than two years ago, says in her forthcoming book she is not "looking forward to opening old wounds" but that she had to defend herself. "Even as I try to move on with my life, I still find it necessary to take one more stand and fight," she writes in the book, "The Last Dance for Grace: The Crystal Mangum Story." "I want to assert, without equivocation, that I was assaulted. Make of that what you will. You will decide what that means to you because the state of North Carolina saw fit not to look at all that happened the night I became infamous."
Did you get that last line? ďSaw fit not to look at all that happened that nightĒ? Is she joking, or just delusional? She had a prosecutor so gung ho to believe her story that he was willing to violate basic rules of investigation, rules of evidence, and the law in order to get charges and convictions based upon a flimsy story and evidence that completely contradicted Mangumís sordid tale. She had every authority in the county and on the Duke campus supporting her, even after her claims broke down under closer examination. She was able to stir up a lynch mob against the innocent, including ďcivil rights activistsĒ who suggested that the accused young men should be convicted even if the assault did not happen as a form of reparations for past injustices against blacks.
And what is even worse is that the state of North Carolina didnít see fit to file charges against her for the false report she made against the Duke lacrosse team. Thatís the only example I can think of that would constitute a decision ďnot to look at all that happened that nightĒ Ė the cowardly refusal to punish the individual who started the whole charade with her lies.
Donít buy the book Ė she doesnít deserve the money.
I despise racist organizations and individuals -- those who are truly racist, not ones that are simply slapped with the label when a group or candidate seeks to preempt discussion by playing the race card. As such, I carry no brief for the KKK, historically the paramilitary terrorist wing of the Democrats and the enemy of all that the GOP stands for.
But when I see an article like this one, I feel a need to remind folks that racist speech does have the protection of the US Constitution, as disgusted as we might be by it.
Take this case.
Commuters found fliers with the image of a white-hooded horseman holding a blazing cross placed on the windshields of hundreds of cars parked at a Long Island Rail Road station.
The fliers were printed with messages such as "Join the Klan and save our land" and "We are of the United Northern & Southern Knights of the Ku Klux Klan are unapologetically committed to the interest and values of the white race!"
Suffolk County police are investigating who may have left the fliers, but says it's possible that no crime was committed. They say the dissemination of the fliers at the Deer Park station Tuesday could be regarding as an act of free expression.
It is that last paragraph that sticks in my craw -- "could be regarded as an act of free expression"? Seems to me that the correct position is should be regarded as an act of free expression, if not "must be regarded as an act of free expression. After all, the First Amendment is meaningless if it only protects the inoffensive and non-controversial.
Oh, and for the record -- those involved in this little effort are nothing but scum.
I praised the FBI for recently calling the honor killing of two teenage girls in Dallas exactly what it was.
Now they have dhimmified and kow-towed to CAIR and the rest of the Islamic grievance establishment.
The FBI said Tuesday that it had deleted the term because the FBI never meant to attach a label to the case. Special agent Mark White, media coordinator in the bureau's Dallas office, told FOXNews.com that the FBI changed the wording ďbecause the statement was not meant to indicate that the FBI was Ďlabelingí anything.
"The person who wrote it up did not see the misunderstanding that [the original wording] would create,Ē White said.
And yet the FBI will continue to label certain incidents as ďhate crimesĒ before such motivation is ever proven in a court of law. I donít see the Department of Justice caving to hate groups the way they do to CAIR, an unindicted co-conspirator in at least one case related to the funding of terrorism.
Letís be realistic here Ė TAKS (for high school, anyway) is going to be dead in a couple of years. The Texas Legislature has already mandated its demise and replacement with End of Course exams actually tied to the content of the course in which they are given. But that does not mean that the following idea is a bad one.
Texas students in certain grades would no longer have to pass the state achievement test to be promoted under a new school accountability plan unveiled Tuesday by leaders of the House and Senate education committees.
The proposal would scuttle a requirement originally championed by former Gov. George W. Bush as a way to curtail the widespread practice of social promotion Ė automatically passing students regardless of achievement.
In addition, the new accountability plan would base annual school performance ratings on three years of test scores rather than the most recent year, allowing school districts and campuses to make up for a bad year of results with a couple of positive years.
Now letís be honest Ė the no promotion rule has been ineffective for years due to an exception allowing school officials and parents to agree to promote a student who failed anyway, as well as provisions for special summer programs for such students in most districts. On the high school level, the only sanction was at graduation, so the promotion issue was non-existent.
So what, then, is there to like about this proposal? It is the three-year rule for evaluating schools and districts. Such a plan would be more reasonable in many instances, allowing a school to overcome a single bad year Ė especially when such years are based upon the performance of a handful of students in a sub-group. I once heard of a school being rated unacceptable because three children (all new to the district) failed a single test Ė all were members of the same minority group and had led to the school to be deemed as failing to provide a proper education to that minority group. Similarly, I already know that many schools and districts in this area will take a hit in the wake of Hurricane Ike Ė the lost school days and disruption to the lives of our students will likely hurt scores. Does a one-year ďsnapshotĒ this spring REALLY reflect on the job these districts and schools are doing?
Oh, and a note to Greg at Gregís Opinion: It isnít at all inconsistent to support state oversight of school districts because those districts are, in fact, a creature of the state itself and are therefore properly under such oversight. That differs from the case of federal oversight of the states, which constitutionally exist independent of and distinct from the federal government. So while one can argue about whether the current testing regime is a good one or not, it is not a case of the state intruding where it does not have any place going.
Just remember -- this is while Baraack Obama was working with William Ayers, unrepentant terrorist.
Bill Ayers didn't keep his opinions or his past a secret. For Obama to claim he did not know or assumed he was reformed is a crock.
And that, my friends, raises not just the judgment issue, but also the character issue because of his propensity to lie to the American people at every opportunity.
By the way -- how well did Obama know Ayers and how far back does the close relationship go? Close enough for him to be mentioned in one of Ayers' books, for him to give a pre-publication blurb for the book, and for him to give Ayers a glowing personal recommendation.
Explain this one away, Barry!
The Supreme Court agreed Monday to decide whether people picked up on immigration violations also can face charges of identity theft if they use Social Security and other identification numbers that belong to others.
Federal appeals courts have split over whether the defendant must know that the phony ID numbers belong to a real person and the court said it will resolve the question.
Federal prosecutors have increasingly been bringing the more serious identity theft charges against undocumented immigrants, including many who were arrested in raids on meatpacking plants.
Defense lawyers have argued that their clients should not be charged with stealing someone elseís identity because the immigrants only were seeking documentation that would allow them to work. They didnít know if the numbers were fictitious or belonged to someone else, their lawyers say.
The Bush administration, however, has said that it doesnít matter under federal law.
The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, based in St. Louis, agreed with the administration and upheld the conviction of Ignacio Carlos Flores-Figueroa.
Actually, three federal appellate courts have ruled in favor of the administrationís position, while only one has ruled against it. I would imagine a couple of rushed Supreme Court picks could have a great deal of impact upon the outcome of the case if Barack Obama were to win the election in two weeks, with the pro-illegal ideology of Obama and any justices he appointed leading to a decision that illegal immigrants can get away with crimes that US citizens cannot.
Of course, an Obama victory could well lead to a decision by the new administration to change its position on the issue, and lead to the enshrinement of that principle into law as well.
To protect your identity from border jumpers, vote for McCain Ė at least heís better on immigration than Obama.
Why have Barack Obama and Joe Biden stked the fires of hate so high that there would be an act of gun violence against the official McCain campaign bus only weeks before the election? Donít they and their surrogates know that their extreme words could lead to such violence from their more unstable supporters??
We learned at this morningís Stop Obama Rally here that the McCain/Palin Straight Talk Express came through town yesterday. It arrived with a window shattered by a .22 caliber weapon. It had also been hit by an unknown number of paint balls from a paint ball gun or guns. There were reportedly no injuries and neither candidate was on board.
One local man who saw the damage and spoke with the McCain/Palin staffers said the attack(s) had occured in southern New Mexico that same day. The Express is traveling the country independent of the candidates, handing out campaign materials.
Now tell me, what would happen if the official Obama campaign bus were shot at, even without either of the Democrat candidates aboard? It would be front page news, with all sorts of condemnations of the Republicans for encouraging hatred, and restatements of the discredited stories about calls to kill Barack Obama being heard at GOP rallies.
But actual violence against the McCain campaign bus? The media apparently thinks there is nothing of importance in this news, and so wonít report it at all.
Too bad the political appointees, PC Homeland Security officials and State Department weenies are unlikely to embrace this common sense acknowledgment of the reality of the enemy we fight.
A U.S. military "Red Team" charged with challenging conventional thinking says that words like "jihad" and "Islamist" are needed in discussing 21st-century terrorism and that federal agencies that avoid the words soft-pedaled the link between religious extremism and violent acts.
* * *
"The fact is our enemies cite the source of Islam as the foundation for their global jihad," the report said. "We are left with the responsibility of portraying our enemies in an honest and accurate fashion."
Using the terms in question is simply a matter of intellectual honesty. While one can debate whether or not al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations accurately represent orthodox Islam in their ideology, what cannot be denied is that they claim to base their ideology upon Islam. To refuse to use the terms that they use themselves makes understanding them much more difficult, if not impossible. Those members of the Islamic community who insist that the terms not be used by our government are, whether intentionally or not, hindering the war on terror by cutting off what are fruitful discussions of the motivations of the terrorists themselves. We simply cannot allow ourselves to be held hostage to political correctness.
If you are serving as a legislator and are not allowed to take speaking fees, how can you have speaking fees as a part of your income? That would mean you broke the law to personally enrich yourself.
And if you are a candidate running for president who has such illegal speaking fees, as documented by your tax returns, wouldnít the media be gung ho to report on your unethical/illegal activity?
Well sure they would Ė unless your name is Barack Hussein Obama.
Apparently, on Obamaís released tax records, he discloses income from speaking fees. The problem? Accepting payment for speaking fees when youíre a legislator is against Illinois state law
Apparently, as an Illinois state legislator through 2004, Barack was prohibited from taking honoraria for speaking under the Illinois Governmental Ethics Act
But what about Barack Obamaís 2000 and 2002 tax returns?
2000: On his 2000 Schedule C-EZ, Barack reported that he received $16,500 as a ďFoundation director/Educational speaker.Ē
2001: On his 2001 Schedule C-EZ, Barack reported $98,158 from a Chicago law firm, Miner, Barnhill, for ďLegal services/attorneyĒ (and nothing for speaking)
2002: On his 2002 Schedule C, Barack reported $34,491 for ďLEGAL SERVCES / SPEAKING FEES.Ē
These ďspeaking feesĒ are in addition to the amounts that Barack was paid as an employee, a lecturer at the University of Chicago, reported on the first page of his 1040s.
In other words, Obamaís campaign has released documents signed by barrack Obama on which he admits to illegal and unethical activity. This isnít stuff being manufactured by his opponents, it is information that Obamaís own staff has given to the media and the public at his direction.
But somehow, the media isnít interested in this little tidbit. They would rather look at Cindy McCainís American Express bill and how many houses the McCains own and the make and model of their vehicles. Illegal activity by Barack Obama? Not a chance Ė after all, that would mean they would have to call Barack Obama a criminal, and calling a black man who has committed a crime a criminal would be racist .
If you wonít vote for Obama, it is because of your racism Ė so says Joe Biden.
"Undecided people are having a difficult time just culturally making the change, making the move for the first African American president in the history of the United States of America," the Democratic vice-presidential nominee said at a San Francisco fundraiser Saturday evening. "So we need to respond. We need to respond at the moment, immediately, not wait, not hang around, not assume any of this won't stick."
In other words, it isnít concern about experience, income redistribution, or national security that is prompting people to reject the most inexperienced presidential candidate since William Jennings Bryan (the first time around) Ė it is racism. Joe Biden, whose own history of racial and ethnic gaffes, has proclaimed it to be so.
And those of us concerned that the there might be a major international crisis provoked by foreign powers seeking to test a neophyte like Obama are simply listening to fear mongers Ė like Joe Biden. Such concerns are really just a code for race.
Ainít it great that Barack Obama is a post-racial candidate running a campaign based upon issues?
NOTE TO SUPPORTERS OF ISRAEL CONSIDERING OBAMA: Are you sure you want to risk the crisis being an attack on Israel by Iran, Syria, or Hezbollah?
Well, it looks like there's been another case of a Muslim student claiming slurs and assault directed her way by an "Islamophobic" hatemonger. And, once again, there is the minor problem that the incident did not happen.
A Muslim student who said a masked gunman assaulted her after he wrote anti-Islamic slurs in a women's restroom at Elmhurst College was arrested Friday after an investigation concluded the attack never happened.
A week after the case roiled the small college, Elmhurst Police Chief Steven Neubauer said Safia Jilani, 19, of Oak Brook had been booked on a felony charge of filing a false police report, which is punishable by 1 to 3 years in prison.
Jilani reported Oct. 9 that the man beat her with the gun in the college's science center, authorities said. Anti-Muslim graffiti was written on the wall, similar to a threat written on the same student's locker the previous week.
Authorities have now confirmed that there is no evidence supporting Jilani's claims. It appears that she was simply trying to delegitimize those who reject Islamist terrorism, as a small group of students did some weeks previous when they shouted at the perp and her friends while they protested against the US government and in support of al-Qaeda terrorists imprisoned at Guantanamo.
Which leads me to ask a question. Jilani created a climate of hate based upon ethnicity and religion with this false report. There were two groups of victims. The first were the white male (presumably Christian) students who were all tarred by her description of her assailant. But the second were all of her fellow Muslim students at Elmhurst College, who were equally targeted by her false report. Why can't these indisputable facts be used to raise the ante a bit, and charge her with a bias crime against both groups?
After all, heíll apparently hold an Astroturf rally for you to create the appearance of a grassroots movement Ė if you are willing to cough up $20K for him.
Thatís one of the details exposed in the billing dispute between local Democrat hack lawyer Lloyd Kelley and former clients Erik and Sean Ibarra over Kelleyís bill. One of the things that he wants the Ibarras to pay for is this little expense.
Kelley said he had $300,000 in expenses, but a judge approved only a reimbursement of $51,000. The remainder of the expenses, according to the contract signed by the brothers and Kelley, says the brothers must pay the expenses.
* * *
A supplemental page of expenses filed by Kelley show $95,000 paid to attorney Tammy Tran for jury consulting and $20,000 to community activist Quanell X for organizing a rally in front of the courthouse, Sorrels said.
In other words, the rally intended to represent the ďoutraged communityĒ was actually nothing but a bit of political theater bought and paid for by the plaintiffsí lawyer from a ďcommunity activistĒ who will prostitute himself and his followers out if the price is right.
In other words, the name of the game for Quannell X is ďshow me the money!Ē
UPDATE -- 10/17/2008, 7:30 PM: Looks like the issue may be fraud by Kelley, with Quannell X being a pawn in this whole thing:
Longtime Houston activist Quanell X wants you to know that he did not get $20,000 for organizing a demonstration last June in support of the Ibarra brothers during the lawsuit in which they won $1.7 million for mistreatment by Harris County deputies.
The brothers had been roughed up and falsely arrested for taking photographs from their own property of a drug raid on the house next door. Quanell X led a demonstration march as the jury was hearing testimony. But he insists he was not paid for the expression of outrage.
"That is absolutely not the case," Quanell X said Thursday. "Nobody has ever paid me for a demonstration."
Randy Sorrels is the attorney for the Ibarras in a lawsuit over that and other expenses flamboyant lawyer Lloyd Kelley is charging them for work on their wildly successful suit against the county.
Sorrels says Kelley told the brothers the payment to Quanell X was for organizing a demonstration march.
Not so, says Quanell X. He says he even turned down an offer from the Ibarra brothers to help pay the expenses.
"I told them I didn't want anybody saying you paid for the march."
Quannell X was, however brought in as a jury consultant, for which he was paid. That would make it appear that the officemate of the Democrat candidate for DA is trying to rip off his former clients just days before the election, and using fraudulent documents in the process.
One snarky liberal reader wrote in, "Whatís Joe the Plumber so worried about taxes for? It doesnít sound like he pays them anyway."
I wonder if she feels the same way about Obama's campaign treasurer, Martin Nesbitt, who has a $2,411 tax lien from the state of California.
Think about it. In 24 hours, we've learned more unflattering details about a guy who asked Obama a question and walked away unpersuaded than almost any of his campaign staff or associates.
Well, since only one has failed to fall down and worship at the altar of Obamism, we know what the Left and the media (but I repeat myself) think. Still, this ought to be Exhibit A of how deep in the tank the MSM is for Obama.
Well, these are certainly interesting, to say the very least.
A lot of the state polls look pretty bad for McCain lately, but there's been an interesting shift in the tracking polls.
ē Rasmussenís Presidential Tracking poll now shows Barack Obama leading John McCain by four points, 50 percent to 46 percent. At one point, Obama was up by 8.
ē Gallupís national tracking poll of likely voters has Obama leading McCain by two points, 49 percent to 47 percent.
ē AP/Yahoo shows Obama leading McCain by two points, 44%-42%
ē The Reuters/C-Span/Zogby national tracking survey shows Obama leading McCain by five points, 49%-44%.
ē The GW/Battleground tracking poll has Obama leading McCain by four points, 49%-45%.
The other thing is, in most of these, if there's been movement, Obama's been pretty consistent - right around, or just under, 50 percent. McCain's gains have come from undecideds.
The key fact there Ė Obama doesnít get more than 50% in any of the polls, and in none of them is he ahead by more than 5%. That makes this race winnable in the next 18 days Ė if we can each persuade one undecided voter to come around to our side Ė or one unmotivated individual who leans towards McCain to get off their duffs and vote for him.
It is ours to lose Ė or ours to win. Iíd much rather win.
If a student wearing a Barack )bama shirt to school faced this sort of racial harrassment for expressing her political opinions, the press would present it as but one more piece of GOP intolerance. But when it happens to a girl wearing a McCain-Palin shirt, the response is muted and the school seeks to ignore the incident.
She's only 12 years old but Ashleigh Jones is feeling the heat of this election year.
Thatís because the seventh grader at New Smyrna Beach Middle School was called a racist by classmates for wearing a pro-Sarah Palin t-shirt.
Jones is volunteering at the Republican Headquarters in New Smyrna Beach. The Palin t-shirt was a gift from her fellow volunteers.
But when she wore it to school she learned just how tough politics can be.
ďSome of the students were calling me racist because I was Caucasian,Ē she said. ďI wanted the Caucasian man to win. And I told them thatís not true. Itís my freedom of speech, itís my opinion.Ē
Interestingly enough, Ashleigh and her family are not planning to sue, nor are they seeking legal intervention to punish the school or her harassers. Thatís refreshing in one sense Ėbut I donít think it is the right response. Given the consistent use of thug tactics to silence those who do not hew to the tenets of Obamism and fall down in worship of the Obamessiah, I think it is important that we take every opportunity to get legal precedents on the books to protect the rights of those of us who dissent from that foul ideology. Not, of course, that I expect the rights or precedents to be respected by a potential Obama Administration or the mind-numbed zombies who are voting for him Ė but Iíd like there to be a crystal clear record of how American liberties were undermined by these folks.
Remember the media hubbub two years over the Mark Foley (R-FL) ďdirty emailĒ scandal? Well, it is now clear that his successor, Tim Mahoney (D-FL), has had no less than two affairs since taking over the office on a platform of family values and restored morality. So where is the press on this story Ė especially now that it appears there is a federal investigation involving the misuse of congressional funds and a potential sexual quid-pro-quo for disaster relief funds in the county run by one of his bimbos.
The FBI is investigating whether Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Mahoney broke any laws or misused federal money when he hired a mistress to work in his office, a senior federal law enforcement official told The Associated Press.
Federal agents also are examining whether a second affair Mahoney was having with a high-level official in his Florida district was behind his decision to push for federal emergency funds for her county, the official said.
The person spoke to The Associated Press only on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the investigation. The person noted investigators would likely need both women's help to pursue the matter. The cases would be hard to prove without them.
Weíve yet to hear the media ask what the Democrat leadership knew and when they knew it Ė and why they didnít address it with an ethics investigation at the time rather than waiting until the long-rumored affairs were finally made public. For that matter, the press isnít giving us the saturation coverage that they gave a handful of questionable emails sent to male pages and held by Democrat activists until they would do the most political damage to the GOP. I wonder why that could be?
The good news, though, is that Mahoney is now down by 26 in the polls, with the deficit widening since it became public that he couldnít keep his pants on and his mistresses out of the public purse.
It begins Monday, folks, and I urge you to take advantage of the opportunity to vote before election day at one of the many early voting sites in the area.
An unprecedented half-million Harris County voters are expected to cast early ballots for the presidential race and other offices during the two-week early voting period, an increase sparked in part by political parties and candidates urging supporters to vote before Election Day.
In response to the forecast of a record-high early vote that starts Monday in Texas, county officials have added extra polling stations and voting booths and new auxiliary equipment to keep waiting lines as short as possible.
The most interesting change is the addition of a card reader that will enable the poll workers to swipe your driversí license to get your identifying information more quickly Ė though a license is still not required to vote.
And Iíd like to add a special note to all the voters of Seabrookís Precinct 333 Ė as you may know, Evelyn Meador Library has been our polling place for years, but it is one of the many beloved casualties of Hurricane Ike last month. I was informed on Wednesday that our polling place this year will be Bay Elementary School Ė but be aware that we are voting in the back gymnasium, which is most easily accessed by entering the school grounds by way of city hall rather than off of Highway 146. Weíll be there for our usual hours Ė but I know that many of you (like me) are out of your homes. Iíd therefore like to encourage you to take advantage of early voting if it is more convenient for you, especially if you are temporarily residing outside of the precinct. Not only do we have the presidential election, but Seabrookís own Pete Olson is going to need all our votes in his effort to unseat Nick Lampson and put CD22 in the GOP column where it belongs. Add to that the importance of reelecting John Cornyn to the US Senate and Mike Jackson to the Texas Senate, as well as all the county and judicial races that are on the ballot, and a solidly conservative precinct like ours needs a strong turnout to ensure that we have the sort of government we believe in for the county, state, and nation. And yes, Democrats are welcome to come out and vote, too (that means you, Janet and Paula and the rest of you) Ė after all, events of the last few weeks have made it ever so clear how important it is that we make our voices heard.
Hereís a neat discovery for fans of the movie Gladiator Ė the tomb of the man whose life partially inspired the main character of the movie.
The 1,800-year-old stone mausoleum on the banks of the River Tiber was hailed by experts as an "extraordinary discovery" and one of the most important Roman finds for decades.
It was built to contain the remains of Marcus Nonius Macrinus, a proconsul and a favourite of Marcus Aurelius, who ruled as emperor from 161 AD to his death in 180 AD.
Macrinus was born in Brescia, in northern Italy, and won victories leading Roman legions into battle.
He became a confidant of Emperor Aurelius, being appointed a proconsul in Asia Minor and describing himself as "chosen out of the closest friends".
Elements of his life were incorporated into Maximus Decimus Meridius, the fictional character for which Crowe won an Oscar in the 2000 film Gladiator, directed by Ridley Scott.
In other words, Macrinus was a rather extraordinary man who ascended to the very heights of Roman government. As such, his tomb is rather extraordinary.
The intricately carved marble tomb, complete with a stone inscription identifying it as that of Macrinus, was found near the Via Flaminia, one of the arterial roads which led in and out of ancient Rome.
The jumble of broken columns, friezes and stone blocks was discovered during the demolition of a warehouse, along with remarkably intact parts of the original Roman road.
* * *
Over the centuries parts of the tomb crumbled into the Tiber but enough has been recovered during months of painstaking excavation work that experts are discussing the possibility of reconstructing it as the focus of an archeological park.
Iíve always wanted to visit the Eternal City Ė and if I ever do, this sounds like one more site to add to my itinerary.
But that wonít stop the Left from saying it did Ė after all, the truth quit mattering to them some time ago.
The agent in charge of the Secret Service field office in Scranton said allegations that someone yelled ďkill himĒ when presidential hopeful Barack Obamaís name was mentioned during Tuesdayís Sarah Palin rally are unfounded. The Scranton Times-Tribune first reported the alleged incident on its Web site Tuesday and then again in its print edition Wednesday. The first story, written by reporter David Singleton, appeared with allegations that while congressional candidate Chris Hackett was addressing the crowd and mentioned Obamaís name a man in the audience shouted ďkill him." News organizations including ABC, The Associated Press, The Washington Monthly and MSNBCís Countdown with Keith Olbermann reported the claim, with most attributing the allegations to the Times-Tribune story. Agent Bill Slavoski said he was in the audience, along with an undisclosed number of additional secret service agents and other law enforcement officers and not one heard the comment. ďI was baffled,Ē he said after reading the report in Wednesdayís Times-Tribune. He said the agency conducted an investigation Wednesday, after seeing the story, and could not find one person to corroborate the allegation other than Singleton. Slavoski said more than 20 non-security agents were interviewed Wednesday, from news media to ordinary citizens in attendance at the rally for the Republican vice presidential candidate held at the Riverfront Sports Complex. He said Singleton was the only one to say he heard someone yell ďkill him.Ē ďWe have yet to find someone to back up the story,Ē Slavoski said. ďWe had people all over and we have yet to find anyone who said they heard it.Ē
Not, of course, that the minor detail that their reporter was the only person who seems to have heard the comment matters to the Scranton Times-Tribune and its editors. They have staked out the position that since their reporter reported it and they approved it, it must be the truth. So never mind what the protective detail and participants in the rally have to say Ė the outrageous comment is reality because the press says it is.
If you lack any legitimate argument in favor of your candidate, just dump dog shit in the back of your neighborís truck because he supports the other guy.
A St. Cloud man, and self-proclaimed John McCain hater, was arrested Wednesday for putting bags of dog poop in the bed of a pickup truck with McCain-Palin stickers. Officers responded to the 2300 block of 27th St. S on Wednesday for a complaint of someone dumping dog poop in the back of a pickup truck. The owner of the truck said he put McCain-Palin campaign stickers on his truck about two weeks ago. Shortly after, he started finding small bags of dog poop in the back of the truck. Wednesday morning, the ownerís mother saw a neighbor putting bags of poop in the truck and called police. David Vandelinden, 45, of St. Cloud was identified as the suspect, and admitted to placing the dog poop in the truck because ďhe hates McCain.Ē Vandelinden was issued a $183 fine for littering and unlawful dumping.
Well, I suppose that is a step up from Molotov cocktails, but it still betrays a lack of civility of the sort that Obama and his minions complain that Republicans lack. Could it be that such charges are nothing more than projection?
Because if you exercise your civil liberties to question their ideology, you will lose your right to privacy and will be investigated by the government.
Want an example? Look at the response of the KOSsacks to Joe the Plumber after he dared to dissent (didnít we hear for the last 8 years that dissent is the highest from the Gospel According to Obama the Lightworker.
The IRS, the FBI, and the FTC should be checking into this guy. This guy Joe may regret his 15 minutes of fame. Most of us have skeletons in the closet. Does he really want his revealed?
Got that? For questioning the policy proposals of a presidential candidate, he needs to have his taxes audited, a criminal investigation launched against him, and complete scrutiny of his business practices Ė as well as having complete exposure of the details of his private life. What next Ė a show trial like those put on by Stalin during the Purges? Can you imagine the abuses that would result if these people were ever permitted to hold the reins of power? We would rapidly descend into the depths of leftist tyranny!
In other words, the preservation of our civil liberties are at stake in this election Ė and that is reason enough to vote for McCain in order to stave of the legions of forced conformity under the tyrannical banner of Obamism. But then again, why should we be surprised Ė Biden has already let us know that when the Democrats are in charge, paying higher taxes is the highest sign of liberty, not dissent.
UPDATE: Interesting, isn't it, that Obama and his supporters object to efforts to take jobs away from "undocumented workers" who have entered the country illegally and have no right to be employed here -- but are now rushing around to get a US citizen like Joe the Plumber shut down because he lacks a city plumbing license. Too bad he isn't Jose el Plomero -- he might be able to get someone to stand up on his behalf in the face of an attack on his civil liberties and right to a decent job at which he makes a decent living. But since he's white, English-speaking, and a US citizen, the same folks who would be defending him are now out to destroy him for voicing an unacceptable political view.
Here are the results from council votes that I've missed posting since Hurricane Ike. I offer my apologies for the delays, and hope to do better in the future.
* - T denotes a tie
* - T denotes a tie
* - T denotes a tie
When I was in middle school, our textbook had a bit of a memoir by Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas. It was a decent piece of literature about his youth and love of the great outdoors. Since justices are appointed for life, I donít see a problem with using the work of one as an example of a literary form. If, on the other hand, Douglas had been a politician who regularly stood for reelection, Iíd argue the position differently Ė and I say this even though I hold Douglas in great esteem (though I would argue strongly against elements of his jurisprudence).
This brings us forward to the present day, and a choice by a textbook publisher that is rather troubling Ė the choice of Barack Obamaís Dreams from My Father as an example of a memoir in a recently published middle school textbook.
My 8th grade son is in an advanced English class at a public middle school here in Racine, Wisconsin. I just found out that my son's new (copyright 2008) Wisconsin - McDougal Littell Literature book has 15 pages covering Barack Obama.
I was shocked - No John McCain, no Hillary Clinton, no George Bush - Just Barack Obama. I'm wondering how it is that Obama's story gets put into an 8th grade literature book? It would be one thing, if it was just the tidbit about his boyhood days, but 15 pages, and they talk about his "Life of Service". Honestly, what has Obama really done to be included in this book? Not only that, but on page 847 there is a photo of Obama at the 2004 Democratic Convention with at least 8 Obama signs in the background! Front & center is an www.obama2004.com sign.
Now letís say this up front Ė Dreams from My Father is a good book, and it is a good example of a memoir. Were Obama not a living politician currently seeking office (and likely to continue doing so for the life of that textbook), Iíd probably agree with the choice of the excerpt Ė though Iíd have some concern, given that the book as a whole is written at a 12th grade reading level according to one article I recently saw. But the reality is that we are in the midst of an election campaign and will likely have Obama as a major political figure for the next couple of decades, and the choice therefore raises the specter of political favoritism, whether accidental or intentional.
For the record, let me add that my objection is not about Barack Obama per se. Iíd have the same objection if this were an excerpt from Faith of My Fathers by John McCain. We simply need to keep the active politicians out of the textbooks to the degree possible Ė with the possible exception of history and government books, I donít see where their presence is particularly appropriate or desirable.
UPDATE -- 10/17/2008: The MSM catches up with this story -- sort of.
But his standard of ethics seems to be ďWell, it wasnít illegal.Ē
Responding for the first time to allegations he paid $121,000 to prevent a lawsuit by a former staffer with whom he had an affair, Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Mahoney this morning acknowledged causing "pain" to his family, but said he didn't break any laws and would fight for his reelection.
Mahoney, accompanied by his wife, appeared before local reporters for less than two minutes in a meeting room at the PGA National Resort. He read a prepared statement and did not take questions.
"I have not violated my oath of office, nor have I violated any laws, and I consider this to be a private matter," said Mahoney.
Except you ran as the guy with great family values who was going to bring a higher moral tone after the Mark Foley dirty email scandal. Now it appears that he was boffing a campaign aide during that very campaign, and has since paid her off to keep the matter out of court. That makes it a public matter.
Now if only the press will spend some time running down the story about Barack Obamaís girlfriend who Michelle ran offÖ
At a number of schools around the country, all sorts of special accommodations have been made to enable Muslims to pray on campus.
Prayer rooms designed with Islamic sensibilities in mind.
But on at least one campus, Christian prayer will get you tossed out on your ear, according to a lawsuit filed in California.
Two students filed a federal lawsuit this past Monday against the publicly-funded College of Alameda alleging that school officials at the California school threatened to expel them for praying.
The events prompting the lawsuit took place in December, 2007, a press release from the Pacific Justice Institute reports.
That month, student Kandy Kyriacou visited an instructor to give her a Christmas gift. Kyriacou found the instructor alone in her shared office. When the instructor indicated she was ill, Kyriacou offered to pray for her.
The instructor bowed her head and Kyriacou began to pray. They were then interrupted by another faculty member, Derek Piazza, who entered the room and said ďYou canít be doing that here!Ē
Kyriacou left to join her friend and fellow student Ojoma Omaga. Piazza followed Kyriacou and repeated his rebuke. The students related that they were surprised by his intimidating behavior.
Three days before Christmas, both students received letters notifying them of the collegeís retroactive ďintent to suspendĒ them. While school policy requires such letters to state factual bases for the charges, the letter only vaguely accused the students of ďdisruptive or insulting behavior, willful disobedience . . . persistent abuse of college employees.Ē
An administrative hearing reportedly found Kyriacouís prayer worthy of discipline and threatened suspension or expulsion for further infractions.
Excuse me Ė ďYou canít be doing that hereĒ?
Why not, exactly? Since when is a public college or university a religion-free zone? Since when is voluntary prayer forbidden Ė especially since, it would appear, that the prayer was taking place in the instructorís office, which would be a private (or at least semi-private) space. Even were the office shared with Piazza, that would not in any way limit the right of Kyriacou and her instructor to engage in prayer in that space, any more than it being a shared space would allow Piazza to dictate what topics of conversation the two could discuss in the space.
Whatís more, Piazzaís decision to pursue the two students and engage in an ongoing religiously based harassment of the two should have resulted in disciplinary action against Piazza, not the students. Such behavior was clearly an abuse of whatever minimal authority that Piazza would have outside of a classroom or his office space. While the record here is unclear as to what interaction the two students had with Piazza during that time, I would imagine that it related to the two attempting to defend their First Amendment rights Ė something which should not result in disciplinary action at a public institution.
Iím curious Ė would the same penalty have been imposed if these had been some of the schoolís ďdiverseĒ Muslims? Or would Piazza been shipped off to a sensitivity class for giving the students offense by his words and action Ė assuming he was not the subject of a fatwa or beheading.
Sarah Said, 17, and her sister Amina, 18, were killed on New Year's Day, but for nine months authorities deflected questions about whether their father ó the prime suspect and the subject of a nationwide manhunt ó may have targeted them because of a perceived slight upon his honor.
The girls' great-aunt, Gail Gartrell, says the girls' Egyptian-born father killed them both because he felt they disgraced the family by dating non-Muslims and acting too Western, and she called the girls' murders an honor killing from the start.
But the FBI held off on calling it an honor killing until just recently, when it made Yaser Abdel Said the "featured fugitive" on its Web site.
The apologists for Islamist extremism at CAIR, however, attempt to whitewash the religiously based murder that follow a pattern noted around the Muslim world.
"As far as we're concerned, until the motive is proven in a court of law, this is [just] a homicide," Mustafaa Carroll, the executive director of the Council of American-Islamic Relations in Dallas, told FOXNews.com.
Frankly, Iím surprised that Carroll is even willing to acknowledge that the two innocent victims are dead until that is proven in a court of law. After all, these folks have never encountered a violent act in the name of Islam that they are willing to whole-heartedly condemn. Why would they now come out and denounce as an honor killing the murder of two American teenagers for behaving like American teenagers, simply because being American teenagers offended the religious sensibilities and manhood of their Muslim father?
First they try to steal the election Ė then they assault those who try to prevent it. Looks like the Obamacrats want to turn America into a Third World Country like Mugabeís Zimbabwe.
George Manos, the 75-year-old Republican, told police that Edith Walker, the 73-year-old Democrat, jumped on his back and struck him in the head three to four times with her fists. Manos said two other elections workers had to pull Walker off his back, according to a report filed with Cuyahoga Falls police.
Manos said it happened after he accused Walker of ballot tampering, and he wants to prosecute.
The incident, which occurred about noon at Gardens of Western Reserve nursing home, is being investigated by both the police and the Summit County elections board. The board probe could lead to a closer examination of the other votes with which Walker was involved.
It seems that Walker had marked a ballot for Obama even after the resident clearly stated a desire to vote for McCain. When Manos, the GOP poll worker, attempted to examine the ballot (as is his right under the law), Walker at first refused and then engaged in an act of violence to prevent him from doing so.
Just one more example of attempted vote theft by Democrats for Barack Obama. In light of the growing evidence of massive fraud by the Left this year, can an Obama victory be seen as legitimate?
And make no mistake Ė that is not something that applies only to those making over $250,000 a year. It actually applies to the paycheck of every American.
"Your new tax plan is going to tax me more, isn't it?" the plumber asked, complaining that he was being taxed "more and more for fulfilling the American dream."
"It's not that I want to punish your success. I just want to make sure that everybody who is behind you, that they've got a chance for success too," Obama responded. "My attitude is that if the economy's good for folks from the bottom up, it's gonna be good for everybody ... I think when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody."
In other words, Barack Obama is going to decide how much success you as an American are allowed to have, and any success beyond that will be confiscated by government and redistributed. And there is nothing magical about that $250,000 figure in his current plan. If there isnít enough ďsuccessĒ to distribute around (read that money earned by hard-working Americans to redistribute to those who are not as successful or as hard working), that number could easily be changed by the Democrat President with the connuivance of a Democrat-controlled House and Senate. Overnight, the number could become $200,000, or $150,000, or $100,000, depending upon how successful Barack Obama and his socialist cronies believe you should be allowed to be.
Of course, Obama is somehing of a hypocrite on this. Heís got his, in the form of book royalties. Iíve not noticed him redistributing his own success to the poor (no, he used a big chunk of it to buy a house in a dirty deal with a corrupt political insider) Ė but he wants the government to take yours at gunpoint to use as he sees fit. That is quite antithetical to the notion of freedom and limited government that underlies our Constitution Ė but then again, Barack Obama believes that the Constitution evolves to mean whatever the latest liberal focus group wants it to mean.
Not just that most of the ďcutĒ is actually composed of refundable tax credits that amount to huge transfer payments to those with no income tax liability. Rather, it is what is done to the marginal tax rate (the tax you pay on the next dollar earned) by most Americans.
Or, explained by the Wall Street Journal,
Because Mr. Obama's tax credits are phased out as incomes rise, they impose a huge "marginal" tax rate increase on low-income workers. The marginal tax rate refers to the rate on the next dollar of income earned. As the nearby chart illustrates, the marginal rate for millions of low- and middle-income workers would spike as they earn more income.
Some families with an income of $40,000 could lose up to 40 cents in vanishing credits for every additional dollar earned from working overtime or taking a new job. As public policy, this is contradictory. The tax credits are sold in the name of "making work pay," but in practice they can be a disincentive to working harder, especially if you're a lower-income couple getting raises of $1,000 or $2,000 a year.
Or put differently, that means there will be an effective tax INCREASE for workers making more than $25K a year.
After all, he ran on a platform of restoring moral values in the wake of the Foley dirty email scandal, using the line that "Restoring America's Values Begins at Home."
West Palm Beach Congressman Tim Mahoney (D-FL), whose predecessor resigned in the wake of a sex scandal, agreed to a $121,000 payment to a former mistress who worked on his staff and was threatening to sue him, according to current and former members of his staff who have been briefed on the settlement, which involved Mahoney and his campaign committee.
Mahoney, who is married, also promised the woman, Patricia Allen, a $50,000 a year job for two years at the agency that handles his campaign advertising, the staffers said.
Why canít these Democrats guys keep their pants on around campaign staffers and public employees?
You know, for encouraging a climate of hate directed against his opponents?
You know, like this little gem directed by one of his supporters against Gov. Palin.
Outside on Broad Street, waiting for Palin to leave, one man was heard saying: "Let's stone her, old school."
After all, if McCain and Palin are responsible for every reprehensible comment by a supporter, the same standard should apply to Obama and his supporters.
If you had asked me some time back, I would have said that it did not. However, the exposure of John Edwardsí affair and illegitimate child Ė and the close connection with his campaign apparatus Ė and the parallels with this supposed Obama affair makes a closer look imperative.
Barack Obama is the target of a shadowy smear campaign designed to derail his bid for the US Presidency by falsely claiming he had a close friendship with an attractive African-American female employee.
The whispers focus on a young woman who in 2004 was hired to work on his team for his bid to become a senator.
The woman was purportedly sidelined from her duties after Senator Obamaís wife, Michelle, became convinced that he had developed a personal friendship with her.
The allegations were initially circulated in August, just two weeks before the convention at which Obama finally beat his opponent for the Democratic Party nomination, Hillary Clinton.
The woman, now 33, vigorously denies the vicious and unsubstantiated gossip.
Now excuse me, but isnít this the same template that was played by the MSM prior to Jophn Edwards being caught visiting his mistress and love child in an LA hotel? The media tried to down-play that story until Edwards was forcibly outed. Shouldnít they actually do their job this time, three weeks prior to the election?
Now some might say that there is no evidence to support this story. Funny, that didnít stop the ďSarah Palin isnít her babyís mamaĒ some weeks back Ė or the New York Times article alleging a McCain affair with a lobbyist last spring on the basis of a couple of anonymous sources. Letís just apply the same standard to Barack Obama that would be applied if he were a Republican, and let the chips fall where they may.
I might not have made the comparison, but I certainly wonít repudiate it Ė and wish that the McCain team had not done so.
The chairman of the Virginia Republican Party has compared Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama to Osama bin Laden because of the Illinois senator's past association with Bill Ayers, who has confessed to domestic bombings as a member of the Vietnam War-era Weather Underground.
Virginia Democrats, and some Republicans, are outraged, saying these are the latest in a series of inflammatory statements that the GOP has made against Obama in Virginia, a state that has emerged as a crucial battleground in the election.
According to a report in this week's Time magazine, the Virginia party chairman, Del. Jeffrey M. Frederick (R-Prince William), told Virginia volunteers working for GOP nominee John McCain that Obama and bin Laden "both have friends that bombed the Pentagon."
"That is scary," Frederick said while providing talking points to GOP volunteers in western Prince William County as they prepared for a door-to-door canvass.
Now letís be honest here Ė Frederick was wrong on one point. Bill Ayers did not have friends who bombed the Pentagon; he actually participated in the bombing personally as one of the leaders of Weathermen. That would make him more akin to Mohammad Atta than to Osama bin Laden, though both less competent than the hijacker in the carrying off his attack and less willing to give his life for his anti-American cause. For that reason, Iíd argue that Bill Ayers is more akin to Eric Rudolf, Ted Kaczinski, or Tim McVeigh than he is to Osama bin Laden. Not that this makes him any more savory than the murderous Islamists with whom our nation is today at war.
But somehow, that should not make the association between Obama and Ayers any more acceptable. Indeed, those who have absolved the former domestic terrorist of his sins against America do a grave disservice to the country in doing so. And that Ayers today makes his living off the same government that he attempted to overthrow Ė something for which he remains unrepentant to this day Ė is another offense against this country.
Does this make Obama guilty of Ayersí crimes? No, of course not Ė but his willingness (and the willingness of so many in the Chicago/Illinois political machine and the national Democrat establishment) to embrace him and work to make him a mainstream political figure is disturbing. Would McVeighís co-conspirator Terry Nichols ever be allowed a similar rehabilitation? Would any politician who associated with him after his involvement in the Oklahoma City bombing ever be considered acceptable by the American people? I donít think either of those questions requires much consideration to answer.
And make no mistake Ė Ayers certainly had not repented of his treason and terrorism at the time Barack Obama worked with and for him. After all, this was a man who wrote in glowing terms of his acts of violence against the government of the United States in 2001.
In his 2001 memoir, Fugitive Days, Ayers brags that he helped blast NYPD headquarters in 1970, the U.S. Capitol in 1971, and the Defense Department in 1972. ďEverything was absolutely ideal on the day I bombed the Pentagon,Ē Ayers writes. ďThe sky was blue. The birds were singing. And the bastards were finally going to get what was coming to them.Ē Ayers also appreciates ďa certain eloquence to bombs, a poetry and a pattern from a safe distance.Ē He called dynamite ďThat most romantic of nineteenth-century radical tools.Ē
Obama continued his association and affiliation with Ayers even after those words were widely publicized at the time of their publication. There could be no mistaking him for someone who had repented and been rehabilitated. It is pretty clear that he still adhered to the same violent platform of three decades before, even if he no longer actively engaged in acts of terrorism.
And therein lies the disingenuousness of those who want to defend Obamaís association with William Ayers. Their willingness to forgive Ayers is predicated upon their support for the cause in which he committed terrorism acts of treason and terrorism against his own country Ė or their willingness to ignore them in the interest of furthering their own political careers. Consideration of that fact ought to be of serious importance in this race, and those who would silence or minimize that issue (as well as Obamaís other unsavory associations) do America a grave disservice.
As the pope canonizes an Indian, Hindus are terrorizing Indiaís Christian community.
This weekend, Pope Benedict XVI canonized an Indian woman whose life was noted for its holiness.
Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday gave the Roman Catholic church four new saints, including an Indian woman whose canonization is seen as a morale boost to Christians in India who have suffered Hindu violence.
Thousands of faithful from the homelands of the new saints, including a delegation from India, where Catholics are a tiny minority, turned out for the ceremony in St. Peter's Square.
The honor for Sister Alphonsa of the Immaculate Conception, the first Indian woman to become a saint, comes as Christians increasingly have been the object of attacks from Hindu mobs in eastern and southern India.
Benedict's predecessor, John Paul II, had beatified Alphonsa during a pilgrimage to India in 1986. Beatification is the last formal step before sainthood, the Church's highest honor for its faithful. Alphonsa, a nun from southern India, was 35 when she died in 1946.
Now this canonization should surprise no one with a knowledge of the religious history of India. Christianity spread to the region as early as the first and second centuries, and missionaries found a vibrant Christian minority in the region when modern Catholic missionary activity began there over five centuries ago. Even so, Christians account for only two percent of Indiaís population.
Which is part of why this next story is so disturbing.
India, the worldís most populous democracy and officially a secular nation, is today haunted by a stark assault on one of its fundamental freedoms. Here in eastern Orissa State, riven by six weeks of religious clashes, Christian families like the Digals say they are being forced to abandon their faith in exchange for their safety.
The forced conversions come amid widening attacks on Christians here and in at least five other states across the country, as India prepares for national elections next spring.
The clash of faiths has cut a wide swath of panic and destruction through these once quiet hamlets fed by paddy fields and jackfruit trees. Here in Kandhamal, the district that has seen the greatest violence, more than 30 people have been killed, 3,000 homes burned and over 130 churches destroyed, including the tin-roofed Baptist prayer hall where the Digals worshiped. Today it is a heap of rubble on an empty field, where cows blithely graze.
Across this ghastly terrain lie the singed remains of mud-and-thatch homes. Christian-owned businesses have been systematically attacked. Orange flags (orange is the sacred color of Hinduism) flutter triumphantly above the rooftops of houses and storefronts.
Interestingly enough, the Indian government seems impotent in the face of these attacks. Why? Perhaps because of the political power that fundamentalist Hindu parties hold in the Indian political system Ė and because there is no political price to pay for protecting the human rights of Indian Christians.
I seem to recall editorials in 1980 proclaiming that the election of Ronald Reagan would be a foreign policy disaster for America Ė that the world (especially Europe) wanted to see Jimmy Carter remain in office rather than see the former governor of California come to power. Any other choice, we were told, would be disastrous to Americaís prestige and our relationship with our allies. Somehow, things didnít quite play out that way.
And so I take this editorial in the Washington Post with an entire shaker of salt, not just a grain of the white stuff.
The outpouring of enthusiasm for Mr. Obama in places such as Berlin -- where a smaller share of people say they have favorable views of the United States than in Russia or China -- seems to reflect a longing to repair a broken relationship. An Obama presidency offers the possibility of building on those sentiments. Mr. McCain would have to start cold. Neither may have a good chance of obtaining more European troops for Afghanistan or major new sanctions against Iran. But on the intangible but critical question of American prestige and the willingness to accept U.S. leadership that comes with it, Mr. Obama has more to offer.
On the other hand, Iíd like to remind folks that we Americans are charged with electing the best leader for our nation. We are not charged with reflecting world opinion. Our European allies do not look to America for guidance on the selection of their leaders Ė and were candidates to appeal to their American popularity, most voters in Europe would vote against them. I urge Americans to take the same tack in making their choice in three weeks.
The average price of a gallon of gasoline in the United States recorded its largest drop ever as crude oil prices plunged and consumer demand continued to wane, an industry analyst said on Sunday.
The Lundberg Survey released this weekend showed the average price of a gallon of self-serve regular down 35 cents over the past two weeks to $3.31. Mid-grade was $3.45 as of Friday and premium was $3.57.
On the other hand, I was getting gas at $3.41 the same week as Hurricane Ike. And Iíve paid less than $3.00 a gallon every time Iíve gassed up in the past week.
Given the current rate of fall, I am expecting to see $2.50 gasoline by election day Ė but still believe that we need to drill more in this country, including offshore and in ANWR. Indeed, I believe that we need to impose a special $1.00 per gallon tax in coastal states that do not permit offshore drilling under the same regulations as are permitted in the Gulf of Mexico.
Oh, yeah Ė and we still need nuclear plants (the one thing France is doing right) and greater use of wind power.
As a second-year associate at a major law firm, she was woman enough to make a stand against the abuse of being treated like a. . . second-year associate.
As far as associate work goes, it could have been worse ó ďAdvertising is a little sexier than spending a full year reading depositions in an antitrust law suit or reviewing documents for a big merger,Ē says [Quincy] White ó but it was monotonous and relatively low-level.
Too monotonous for Michelle, who, White says, complained that the work he gave her was unsatisfactory. He says he gave her the Coors beer ads, which he considered one of the more glamorous assignments they had. Even then, he says, ďshe at one point went over my head and complained [to human resources] that I wasnít giving her enough interesting stuff, and the person came down to my office and said, ĎBasically sheís complaining that sheís being treated like sheís a second-year associate,í and we agreed that she was a second-year associate. I had eight or nine other associates, and I couldnít start treating one of them a lot better.Ē
Now Iíll concede that Michelle Obama is an intelligent woman, with a good education and a strong skill set. But when you are working in an entry-level position, you get stuck doing entry-level work. You donít get to pick and choose your own assignments Ė and to try to do so is a sign of an extreme arrogance. Maybe, though, she decided that her status as an affirmative action baby would get her one more leg up over her melanin-deficient colleagues.
Oh, and one other reason to hate Michelle Obama Ė she was actively involved in the promotion of the PBS Barney franchise and we all know that there is a special place in Hell reserved for those who were in any way involved in bringing the purple dinosaur into American living rooms.
Any one want to bet that she played the race card, too?
H/T Don Surber
You know, rather than merely have the state pay reparations, go after the organization that was really responsible for the event.
Marchers took to the street this week, calling for the state to make reparations for the 1898 Wilmington riots.
About a dozen people marched to the courthouse in Durham on Sunday. It was one of 13 such marches held across the state leading up to the 65th annual conference of the state NAACP, which starts Thursday.
The marchers are asking state legislators to make payments to the descendants of those harmed in an insurrection that led to the deaths of at least 14 black people and perhaps many more.
The riots were brought to the forefront when the 1898 Wilmington Race Riot Commission report was released in 2006 after six years of study by a state-appointed panel.
The panel found that the riots that led to a government overthrow in Wilmington were started by white supremacist leaders in a conspiracy to strip political power from black people and their allies.
State legislators have apologized for the conspiracy, but the state NAACP and other groups in a statewide coalition are calling for the state to make reparations to the families of those who died or lost their livelihoods as a result of the riots.
"You want to apologize, but you don't want to share the wealth with these people," said Fred Foster, head of the Durham branch of the state NAACP. "The only way to bring closure is to set things right."
Yes, set things right indeed. The stateís Democrat Party was one of the two primary instigators, perpetrators, and beneficiaries of the coup conducted against the elected GOP government of Wilmington. Make the Democrats pay for their crimes Ė indeed, liquidate the Democrat Party in North Carolina and distribute the assets as reparations to the families of those who died and/or lost their livelihoods as a result of the murderous rampage by Democrats to create a Democrat-led government in the city Ė and also distribute a share of those assets to the state Republican Party, which was every bit a victim of the coup as the individuals. You know, bring some closure to this incident by setting things right.
He started out as a ďpost-racialĒ candidate, but Obama and his surrogates have found themselves time and again claiming that any criticism of the candidate and his record are racist. Such claims are nonsensical Ė but taken up by the slavering media supporters of the campaign as if they fell from heaven bound in leather with gold leaf on the edge of the pages.
The latest involves Sarah Palinís observation that Barack Obama has had an ongoing close relationship with unrepentant terrorist Bill Ayers.
"Our opponent ... is someone who sees America, it seems, as being so imperfect, imperfect enough, that he's palling around with terrorists who would target their own country," Palin told a group of donors in Englewood, Colo. A deliberate attempt to smear Obama, McCain's ticket-mate echoed the line at three separate events Saturday.
"This is not a man who sees America like you and I see America," she said. "We see America as a force of good in this world. We see an America of exceptionalism."
Her reference to Obama's relationship with William Ayers, a member of the Vietnam-era Weather Underground, was exaggerated at best if not outright false. No evidence shows they were "pals" or even close when they worked on community boards years ago and Ayers hosted a political event for Obama early in his career.
Obama, who was a child when the Weathermen were planting bombs, has denounced Ayers' radical views and actions.
Well, I would dispute the characterization that they were not close Ė especially given that Ayers personally sought out Obama for the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, hosted campaign events, participated in speaking engagements, and otherwise worked closely with the Democrat candidate. While one can argue about the depth of their personal relationship, it was clear that they were close professional associates Ė and that Obamaís willingness to be so closely associated with an admitted terrorist indicates that he does see the world in a manner that is very different from most Americans. Either that, or he doesnít give a damn about anything that doesnít advance Barack Obama personally.
But racist? It the connection to race is so tenuous as to be laughable.
Palin's words avoid repulsing voters with overt racism. But is there another subtext for creating the false image of a black presidential nominee "palling around" with terrorists while assuring a predominantly white audience that he doesn't see their America?
In a post-Sept. 11 America, terrorists are envisioned as dark-skinned radical Muslims, not the homegrown anarchists of Ayers' day 40 years ago. With Obama a relative unknown when he began his campaign, the Internet hummed with false e-mails about ties to radical Islam of a foreign-born candidate.
Whether intended or not by the McCain campaign, portraying Obama as "not like us" is another potential appeal to racism. It suggests that the Hawaiian-born Christian is, at heart, un-American.
So get that Ė any pointing out that Obama might be different from Americans in his outlook or associations is automatically false and racist.
This marks simply one more goofy ďracismĒ charge. They are cataloged over at Pattericoís Pontifications.
- It&ís racist to point out the connection between Barack Obama and a white man ó who happens to be a terrorist.
- Itís racist to point out the similarity between Barack Obama and two white women ó who are famous for being celebrities.
- Itís racist to point out the connection between Barack Obama and a black man ó who happens to have run Fannie Mae.
- Itís racist to point out the connection between Barack Obama and a black woman ó who happens to be his wife, and who said she wasnít really proud of America until her husband was nominated.
And Iíve got to make an observation publicly that I have made privately to friends over the last few months as we have watched Barack Obama deflect criticism by redefining the entire concept of racism Ė if everything, including clear statements of fact and direct quotations of candidates, their friends, family members, and associates, constitutes racism, then the very notion of racism itself is meaningless. And that has the potential for making all but the most pernicious, outrageous forms of racism legitimate, because racism itself will have been devalued as an actual evil. Do we as a country really wish to see our society go down that path?
I'd like to remind all of you about how dishonest Biden has been in the past regarding his use of the death of his first wife and infant daughter for political gain. I wrote about this matter only four weeks ago.
More to the point, he lied about how his wife and daughter died.
Since his vice presidential nomination, Joe Biden's 2007 statement that a "guy who allegedly ... drank his lunch" and drove the truck that struck and killed his first wife and daughter has gained national media traction.
Alcohol didn't play a role in the 1972 crash, investigators found. But as recently as last week, the syndicated TV show Inside Edition aired a clip from 2001 of Biden describing the accident to an audience at the University of Delaware and saying the truck driver "stopped to drink instead of drive."
The senator's statements don't jibe with news and law enforcement reports from the time, which cleared driver Curtis C. Dunn, who died in 1999, of wrongdoing.
So what we have here is a bald-faced lie in an attempt to drum up sympathy and votes -- and perhaps obscure the fact that investigators indicated that the accident may well have been caused by Neilia Biden's own negligent driving. One of the things that the official reports reject is the notion that Dunn was driving drunk.
What's more, Joe Biden knows it. He has for at least seven years, and likely for 36 years. How do we know he knows? Because the family raised this issue with him the last time he made this false statement in public, back in 2001.
After reading a News Journal account of Biden's 2001 speech at UD, Hamill sent Biden a letter on behalf of her father. The newspaper story included Biden's description of getting the call that his wife and daughter had died, but not his comments about Dunn.
Hamill said her note to the senator described how Dunn was affected by the accident.
Printed on the senator's letter head and dated Oct. 11, 2001, the response from Biden reads:
"I apologize for taking so long to acknowledge your thoughtful and heartfelt note," Biden wrote. "All that I can say is I am sorry for all of us and please know that neither I nor my sons feel any animosity whatsoever."
One could argue that the failure to dispute the Dunn family's claims indicates his implicit acceptance of their validity. Even if one does not want to go that far, it is clear that Biden should have known that there was serious question about his account of the incident, and that he ought to more fully research the issue before making the claim again.
And besides, there is plenty of documentary evidence that Mr. Dunn was cleared of any wrong-doing in the accident.
Apparently Biden lacked the decency to do so. But then again, we've all known that Biden is "integrity challenged" for a couple of decades now. But that the Obama campaign did not catch this matter earlier raises serious questions into the opposition research and vice presidential vetting conducted on Joe Biden. For that matter, it also raises questions about the willingness of the press to look into family issues that Biden has referred to on the campaign trail and used to solicit votes. After all, doesn't this relapse into dishonesty and cynical abuse of his family call for the same sort of hard-hitting coverage as Bristol Palin's pregnancy? Where the hell is Andrew Sullivan on this one?
How much longer can this dishonest man continue as the Democrat's candidate for Vice President? And what does his selection say about the judgment of Barack Obama?
UPDATE: Reading through the comments at the N-J, I came across this one that is striking.
I remember the 1972 accident well.I knew the Bidens then as they shopped in the butcher shop where I worked at that time. Let me make something very clear here. The accident happened at Tim's Corner & Limestone Road. Mrs Biden had a stop sign. Mr Dunn, traveling on Limestone Road, did NOT have any stop sign or any other traffic signal. He had the right of way. The speed limit on Limestone Road was 50 MPH. Mrs Biden either ran the stop sign or pulled away from the stop sign without looking or seeing the oncoming truck.
Those involved with altering the facts of this tragic event should be ashamed. My heart goes out to Mr Dunn's family that something like this is reported as "news". I'm sure there wasn't a day in his life (may he rest in peace) that he did not think of the accident. A car pulled directly in front of him and there was nothing he could have done to prevent what happened.
In other words, not only would this have been a situation in which Mr. Dunn was not at fault, the conclusion has to be that Mrs. Biden either didn't look, didn't see, or didn't care that the truck was coming and had right-of-way. Which means, of course, that the accident was most likely due to her own negligence or error. I understand that this may be an uncomfortable reality for the Senator to acknowledge, but for him to peddle the lie that Dunn was drunk -- especially after being told it was untrue -- is reprehensible and inexcusable.
And remember that the investigation, which was headed by an official who was a friend and neighbor of the Bidens, concluded there was no evidence that Dunn "was speeding, drinking or driving a truck with faulty brakes." Under the circumstances (a politically connected associate of a newly-elected senator investigating the death of the senator's wife), it is safe to conclude that no evidence against Dunn would have been overlooked, and that any evidence of wrong-doing on his part would have been used as grounds to file charges against him in a wreck that killed the wife and child of a senior elected official.
Also, while some may argue that this is an unfair attack on Senator Biden's family, I'd argue that it is a reasonable examination of Senator Biden's integrity. Regardless of the cause of the accident, I still feel an aching compassion for the man over the loss of two precious lives. But his pain is no excuse for bending the truth to the breaking point in his public statements -- while he is welcome to believe what he wants in the privacy of his own heart to deal with the anguish over a tragedy that must always be with him, he has no right to make public accusations that inflict pain today upon the family of a man who was cleared of wrongdoing and can no longer defend himself from such charges.
UPDATE 9/9/2008: MVRC is commenting on the story now. Her questions:
1. If Sarah Palin had this kind of ďmemory lapseĒ or told this kind of whopper, how likely would it be that she would get away with it?
2. Bidenís sons were in the vehicle. They were in the hospital for weeks. He took his oath of office at their hospital bed. From then until they got out, he left them alone at the hospital to go to DC to do the senator thing. How is Palinís bringing her family to DC any worse?
After an act of jihadi terrorism in the UK has stalled British publication of a book about Muhammadís pre-pubescent child-bride Aisha, its American publisher has decided to push the release date up by nine days to this coming Monday.
With British publication in doubt for Sherry Jones' "The Jewel of Medina," the U.S. publisher of her controversial novel about the Prophet Muhammad has moved up the release date from Oct. 15 to Monday.
"By speeding up the publication, we wanted to reduce or eliminate the chance of violence," Eric Kampmann, president of Beaufort Books, said Thursday, noting that three men were arrested in London last weekend for a fire-bomb attack on the offices of publisher Gibson Square.
"What had occurred in London, we didn't want to have occur here. We wanted people to have a chance to read the book. Once they read the book, we thought the violence part of this story would disappear and people would be focusing on the story, and the book and Sherry."
Publication in this country was stalled once by an Islamic backlash ginned up by a professor from the University of Texas in the Peopleís Republic of Austin. We must act to guarantee that such books can be freely published here Ė and one way to do so is to purchase them when they are published. I donít have a lot of spare cash, but I will guarantee you that I will be seeking a book at my local book store four days from now, on October 6. I urge the rest of you to do the same Ė it is important.
And to any Muslim who feels obliged to respond violently to the exercise of a human right protected by the First Amendment, I can only say ďAllahu screw you!Ē
Ever notice that supposedly intelligent faculty members from supposedly elite schools often make some of the stupidest proposals to solve non-problems? Law professor Bruce Ackerman provides a new evidence to support this observation with his proposal to abolish the vice presidency.
For two centuries, presidential nominees have used the office to balance the ticket by naming a running mate from a different region, or one who speaks with a different ideological accent to a specific constituency. This means that a president's death generates a double shock: The nation not only mourns a fallen leader, it must deal with a replacement who may push politics in a new direction.
In making such a proposal, Ackerman makes no proposal for how to deal with the succession issue. Would the successor be the Speaker of the House? The Secretary of State? Who would be the proper successor to the dead leader? And most importantly, how would this alternate successor avoid the ďshockĒ of changed politics and personalities? The answer to this last question is that the change of succession would not do that at all Ė and that the good professor is seeking to solve a problem that exists only in his mind.
As I like to point out to folks, when it comes to American values, toleration is all that our society really requires of us. After all, there are many beliefs and practices that some may find repugnant and do not accept, even though they will tolerate them. Indeed, to demand acceptance of these practices, beliefs and believers imposes an unreasonable demand upon peopleís consciences.
That is why I find this effort troubling.
Maybe she'll knock on her neighbors' doors and introduce herself, Dina Abdulkarim said. She could try to talk to them about Islam and what Muslims are really like.
"I have to prove my good intentions," she said. It's not fair, she said, but it's a reality of life as an American Muslim: Too many people think Muslims are radical and violent.
Well, Dina, letís be honest here Ė it isnít a case of Americans being ignorant and bigoted in this case. It is that too many of your co-religionists are radical and violent. We Americans remember 9/11. We are aware of the terrorism regularly committed in the name of your faith by ďgood MuslimsĒ. You need to clean up your faith before most Americans will stop looking at you with a jaundiced eye. It may not be fair to you as an individual, but it is not an unreasonable response to the deeds committed in the name of Islam.
And before folks accuse me of calling all Muslims terrorists, please know that I am not taking that position. I know too many good and decent Muslims (folks probably much like Dina Abdulkarim) who I respect and hold in high esteem. But the reality is that the words and conduct of a significant segment of the Muslim community around the world have caused me to look askance at Islam and its followers.
It is always fun to see the media go rushing to the Bible and find some outside the mainstream opinion that supports an interpretation that would require a conservative to do what the liberal demands Ė or be labeled a hypocrite for not adhering to beliefs that they do not hold.
In a white-steepled church along a stretch in picturesque canyon country, the preacher laid out the basic blueprint of a godly marriage: Husbands lead, wives submit.
Speaking recently before hundreds of worshipers at Placerita Baptist Church in Newhall, guest preacher Chris Mueller affirmed the view that loving male headship and gracious wifely submission are God's plan for spouses.
Placerita, like many conservative Christian churches, teaches that a wife's role is to be her husband's helpmate (Genesis), "workers at home" (Titus) and submissive to her husband in everything (Ephesians).
So how do these congregants square such teachings with their support for Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the conservative evangelical Christian who is aiming to become vice president while her teenage daughter is pregnant, her infant son has Down syndrome and her husband took a leave from work to serve as "Mr. Mom," as People magazine put it?
But letís be honest Ė Palin is not one of those who subscribes to such beliefs, which are a twisting of the mainstream views of most Christians. Most Christians Ė indeed, most evangelicals Ė are accepting of women working outside the home for various reasons, and supportive of families in which a father is the primary caretaker of children while a mother works. Why make an issue of this Ė other than to try to drive a wedge between the evangelical base of the GOP and the GOP ticket?
Iím curious Ė are we next going to be told that good Muslims cannot support Palin because she does not wear a burqa?
Could you imagine the outrage if a newspaper ran a neutral, even slightly approving, story with the following headline?
Whites Forming a Rock-Solid Bloc Behind McCain
We would be treated to even more editorials and columns lamenting the emergence of race and racism in American politics.
Why, then, is this sort of race-based voting not so loudly condemned?
Blacks Forming a Rock-Solid Bloc Behind Obama
We know the answer, of course Ė racially-motivated behavior on the part of minorities is not seen as malignant by the liberal opinion elite. Only when white folks band together in solidarity with their do they see a problem. Instead, they hold minority groups to a lower standard Ė and condemn whites who do not support them in such solidarity as racist.
Weíve got a local Democrat activist here in Houston who likes to report on unethical campaign fundraising and activities Ė invariably all of it committed by Republicans, and much of it not even illegal. And Iíll concede that this friendly nemesis is an expert, having been suspended from his NASA job for six months for a series of egregious violations of the Hatch Act.
I wonder, will he comment on this story?
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has directed nearly $100,000 from her political action committee to her husband's real estate and investment firm over the past decade, a practice of paying a spouse with political donations that she supported banning last year.
Financial Leasing Services Inc. (FLS), owned by Paul F. Pelosi, has received $99,000 in rent, utilities and accounting fees from the speaker's "PAC to the Future" over the PAC's nine-year history.
The payments have quadrupled since Mr. Pelosi took over as treasurer of his wife's committee in 2007, Federal Election Commission records show. FLS is on track to take in $48,000 in payments this year alone - eight times as much as it received annually from 2000 to 2005, when the committee was run by another treasurer.
I guess that the Speaker, who promised to clean up Congress, decided that she and her husband would instead clean up by converting campaign funds to personal use. I wonder if the candidate of Change We Can Believe In has anything to say about this matter, or if such conduct is the sort of change that he plans on bringing into being if he is elected president.
Illegal foreign donors, and phantom donors skirting the contribution limits. That is Change We Can Believe In!
Already, the FEC has noted unusual patterns in Obama campaign donations among donors who have been disclosed because they have gone beyond the $200 minimum.
When FEC auditors have questions about contributions, they send letters to the campaignís finance committee requesting additional information, such as the complete address or employment status of the donor.
* * *
Under campaign finance laws, an individual can donate $2,300 to a candidate for federal office in both the primary and general election, for a total of $4,600. If a donor has topped the limit in the primary, the campaign can ďredesignateĒ the contribution to the general election on its books.
In a letter dated June 25, 2008, the FEC asked the Obama campaign to verify a series of $25 donations from a contributor identified as ďWill, GoodĒ from Austin, Texas.
Mr. Good Will listed his employer as ďLovingĒ and his profession as ďYou.Ē
A Newsmax analysis of the 1.4 million individual contributions in the latest master file for the Obama campaign discovered 1,000 separate entries for Mr. Good Will, most of them for $25.
In total, Mr. Good Will gave $17,375.
Following this and subsequent FEC requests, campaign records show that 330 contributions from Mr. Good Will were credited back to a credit card. But the most recent report, filed on Sept. 20, showed a net cumulative balance of $8,950 ó still well over the $4,600 limit.
There can be no doubt that the Obama campaign noticed these contributions, since Obamaís Sept. 20 report specified that Good Willís cumulative contributions since the beginning of the campaign were $9,375.
In an e-mailed response to a query from Newsmax, Obama campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt pledged that the campaign would return the donations. But given the slowness with which the campaign has responded to earlier FEC queries, thereís no guarantee that the money will be returned before the Nov. 4 election.
Similarly, a donor identified as ďPro, Doodad,Ē from ďNando, NY,Ē gave $19,500 in 786 separate donations, most of them for $25. For most of these donations, Mr. Doodad Pro listed his employer as ďLovingĒ and his profession as ďYou,Ē just as Good Will had done.
But in some of them, he didnít even go this far, apparently picking letters at random to fill in the blanks on the credit card donation form. In these cases, he said he was employed by ďVCXĒ and that his profession was ďVCVC.Ē
Following FEC requests, the Obama campaign began refunding money to Doodad Pro in February 2008. In all, about $8,425 was charged back to a credit card. But that still left a net total of $11,165 as of Sept. 20, way over the individual limit of $4,600.
And in a related fundraising problem, the Obama campaign also allowed donors residing in foreign countries to make contributions without verifying their American citizenship Ė meaning that the campaign raised untold millions in illegal contributions from foreigners. But then again, given his campaigning abroad, why should we be surprised by such a development?
H/T Hot Air
Iíll be honest with you Ė Iíve got no problem with teachers who are politically active. I certainly am, and am offended that there are those (mostly Harris and Fort Bend County Democrats who have twice sought to get me fired for blogging) who argue that my political activity and expression of political opinions makes me unfit to teach and should be the basis for firing me from my job.
Now it may surprise some of you, but I actually tread very carefully in terms of politics in my classroom. When my students and I discussed the election back before the hurricane, I was neutral enough that they were evenly split as to which presidential candidate I am supporting. And I certainly would never wear a campaign button in class Ė and donít do bumper stickers on my car. I simply donít believe in indoctrinating my students.
Thatís why I am disturbed by this story Ė I think it is unethical for teachers to wear buttons like the ones below anywhere on school grounds.
Teachers at Soquel High School have agreed not to wear "Educators for Obama" buttons in the classroom after a parent complained that educators were attempting to politically influence his daughter and other students.
John Hadley, an importer of South African goods, called the school to complain Friday after his 16-year daughter Teegan returned home and reported that she had seen several teachers wearing the buttons.
Hadley said his family supports Sen. Barack Obama's rival, Sen. John McCain, but that he is opposed to teachers wearing political paraphernalia regardless of its nature.
"It doesn't matter who they are supporting," Hadley said Tuesday. "Teachers lose their free-speech rights when they go into a classroom. They are allowed to stick to the curriculum, not political views."
The law disagrees with Hadley, but does allow districts to set limits on the political activities of teachers during the school day.
Now letís address a couple of points here. I donít know that there was an attempt to influence students here, but instead believe it was an attempt to influence colleagues. But the reality is that during the school day we have an influence on our students that can be profound, and our expression can have unintended influence upon our students. So while we do not surrender our rights at the schoolhouse gate (to quote Tinker), we also assume a certain obligation to behave in an apolitical, professional manner during our class time. We do have a captive audience, after all, and have an obligation not to use that time to indoctrinate them with our political opinions. I therefore believe the school is not out of line in its actions in this case.
Please note, however, that Darren at Right on the Left Coast takes a somewhat different view on this situation.