The necessity and joy of being offensive 1

To generalize for a delightful moment of offensive political incorrectness: Germans notoriously lack a sense of humor.

Of course there have been, and are, some German humorists. But that there should be a national scandal, a huge legal controversy, even headlines across the world about a piece of humorous writing by a German in Germany, can only be astonishing.

It has happened.

Stefan Frank writes at Gatestone:

Who would have thought that there is still a law in Germany that makes “lèse majesté” (offending the dignity of a monarch) a punishable crime? And that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is now benefiting from just that – and that it could plunge Germany into a (further) “national crisis.”

The terms “national crisis” and “governmental crisis” have been coming up again and again. In light of all the massive problems Germany has, this one is about a poem in which a cabaret performer and comedian, Jan Böhmermann, recently insulted the Turkish President.

Erdogan has called for Böhmermann’s head and, as of last week, has Chancellor Merkel on his side.

The story began in March, when a German regional television station aired a music video during a satirical show, in which repression and human rights violations under Erdogan were pilloried in a humorous way. The Turkish government summoned the German ambassador and demanded that the video be removed from the internet and never be shown again. Germans thereby learned that the German ambassador is regularly summoned to Ankara – three times so far this year. According to reports, the Turkish government once complained about teaching material in Saxony’s schools that dealt with the Armenian genocide.

The revelation that Erdogan is so easy to insult inspired some people to see if they could go the extra mile. Cabaret artist Jan Böhmermann published an “Offensive Poem” (its actual title) on ZDF Neo, a tiny state-run entertainment TV channel with a market share of 1%. It contained speculations about the Turkish president’s digestive and sexual preferences. AFP reports that,

In his ‘libelous poem’, which, as comedian Jan Böhmermann smilingly announced on television, openly exceeds the limits of free speech in Germany, Böhmermann accused Erdogan of having sex with goats and sheep, among other things.

Böhmermann apparently mixed these unsubstantiated claims with (as an example) truthful statements on the oppression of minorities in Turkey (Erdogan wanted to “get Kurds, cut Christians,” he said).

In a preemptive surrender, which many Germans view as the real scandal, ZDF immediately deleted the broadcast from its Internet archives – before Erdogan could even complain. “The parody that satirically addresses the Turkish President does not meet the quality requirements the ZDF has in place for satire shows,” the station explained of this step. “For this reason, the passage was removed from the program.” This, as ZDF program director Norbert Himmler said, occurred “in consultation with Jan Böhmermann.” The limits of irony and satire were exceeded in this case

ZDF editors now criticize this course of action, and are asking for the piece to be accessible in the archives once again.

Chancellor Merkel – who is not otherwise known to react quickly to crises – tried to appease Erdogan shortly after the broadcast of the program. In a telephone conversation with Turkish Prime Minister Davutoglu, she called the poem “deliberately hurtful” and “unacceptable”. She probably hoped to settle things without having explicitly to apologize, which many Germans from across the political spectrum would resent. But Erdogan has no intention of settling down. He called for the criminal prosecution of Böhmermann. …

Laws, some of which date back to the German Empire, complicate the issue. Hardly any German has ever heard of them, but they have suddenly become relevant. In Germany, the term “abusive criticism” has primarily been familiar to lawyers; the fact that gross affronts are prohibited in Germany is probably obvious to many citizens. However, little known – and much less accepted – is a law from 1871, which makes the “slander of institutions and officials of foreign states” an offense carrying a penalty of up to five years in prison.

On April 14, Angela Merkel announced that she is granting the Turkish President’s demand for prosecution against Böhmermann – against the objections of her coalition partner, the Social Democratic Party (SPD).

In Germany, justice should decide such a case, not the government, says Merkel. But many commentators believe this justification to be hypocritical; after all, Erdogan supposedly already filed lawsuits as a private individual at the Court in Mainz. What Merkel will now enable is another court case for “lèse majesté.” The Berlin Tagesspiegel writes:

“The majority of Germans are against the fact that she [Merkel] is complying with Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s majesty demands in this way. ‘Majesty’ is, therefore, the appropriate term, because penal code section 103 from the year 1871 is for lèse majesté. So it comes from a time when we were still driving carriages and had an emperor. And the Turks had a sultan.”

Many also consider Merkel’s decision to be particularly absurd because on the same day, the Chancellor announced that she wants to abolish the law on lèse majesté “by 2018.”

Through her decision, Merkel signaled that the Turkish President’s “honor” is more important than that of normal German citizens, who can only take ordinary legal action when they are slandered, and who do not enjoy the privilege of an extended “protection of honor” for “princes.”

Erdogan has managed to extend what he already practices in Turkey to Germany. A few months ago, when nobody in Turkey had even heard of Jan Böhmermann, Die Welt reported:

Paragraph 299 of the Turkish Penal Code, which provides for imprisonment of up to four years for insulting the head of state, has become the most common political offense. As a CHP party inquiry revealed, 98 people were arrested for this reason in the first ten months of last year. 66 were indicted, and 15 were kept in custody. The number of preliminary proceedings is unknown; human rights activists estimate several hundred. ‘With these reactions, Erdogan shows how justified this criticism is,’ said CHP human rights politician Sezgin Tanrikulu of Die Welt. ‘A regime that responds to all criticism with criminal proceedings is moving toward a dictatorship’.

The Turkish penal code – now in Germany?

The Turkish government called the slander of Erdogan a “serious crime against humanity”. The choice of words is reminiscent of how Erdogan once acquitted Sudanese President Omar al Bashir of genocide allegations in Darfur: “Muslims cannot carry out genocide.” Erdogan at the time was expressing an attitude often widespread in the West: crimes are not crimes when Muslims commit them. This also seems to be the view of many German politicians and journalists; rarely is a Muslim despot or demagogue criticized in Germany, while at the same time, no one in Germany has any inhibitions about vilifying Christianity or the Church.

It is this double standard, among other things, that Mathias Döpfner, CEO of the major German publishing house, Axel Springer, denounced in an open letter to Böhmermann … In it, Döpfner calls for “solidarity with Jan Böhmermann.” He also writes:

First, I want to say: I think your poem succeeded. I laughed out loud. So it’s important to me to say that, because in the past few days, there hasn’t been a single article about your text – whether accusatory or taking your side – that didn’t first (and at the same time captatio benevolentiae) emphasize how tasteless and primitive and insulting your satire about Erdogan was.

According to Döpfner, it’s “as if you were to accuse a Formula 1 car manufacturer of having fast cars.” Being offensive is certainly the goal, and has a useful consequence: “It is very revealing what reactions your satire triggered. A focal point and a turning point.” Döpfner evokes various works by German artists, comedians, and cartoonists that are solely about mocking Christians and their faith. “When it comes to the provocation of religious or, more precisely, Christian feelings, anything goes in Germany,” says Döpfner. However, if someone offends Erdogan, that leads to “a kind of national crisis.”

Döpfner remembers how in Turkey, Erdogan proceeded against freedom of speech, minorities, and equality for women by force, and mentions the “excessive and reckless violence of the Turkish army” against the Kurds. Why, of all things, does insulting Erdogan cause such turbulence in Germany? Döpfner writes:

For the small compensation of three billion euros, Erdogan regulates the streams of refugees so that conditions do not get out of control in Germany. You have to understand, Mr. Böhmermann, that the German government apologized to the Turkish government for your insensitive remarks. In the current situation, they are simply ‘not helpful’ – artistic freedom or not. You could easily call it kowtowing. Or as Michel Houellebecq phrased it in the title of his masterpiece on the self-abandonment of the democratic Western world: submission.

Erdogan, who also campaigned in Germany during Turkish elections, appears to consider Germany an appendage of his Great Ottoman Empire. He calls out to Turks in Germany: “Assimilation is a crime against humanity.” He has great power in Germany. This is not only based on German organizations like the Turkish-Islamic Union for Religious Affairs (DITIB), which is controlled by the Turkish government, but above all on his ability to provoke upheaval in Germany if he wants. That Chancellor Merkel has delegated even more power to Erdogan in this situation, by imploring him to prevent hundreds of thousands of migrants in Turkey from heading for Europe, has made the situation even worse — particularly because she has explained over and over that this is the only solution to the migrant crisis.

Merkel considers it indecent when Europeans secure their own country’s borders based on current laws, but she gives Erdogan full reign to proceed with migrants at his discretion. …

Böhmermann’s television appearances were canceled; he fears for his life and is under police protection.

Posted under Commentary, Germany, Humor, satire, Turkey, tyranny by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, April 20, 2016

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Pretzels from Neptune 6

We are about to make sweeping generalizations, with no attempt to accommodate all shades of opinion. ( Shades of opinion are welcome in comment.) 

Left and Right inhabit different universes of discourse. Completely different issues concern them.

The biggest issues on the American Left (in random order) are:

  • Climate and the Environment
  • Sex
  • Race
  • Social Justice

To elaborate a little more:

The Left – internationally – holds man-made global warming to be an urgent threat to all life on earth, and tries in the name of saving the planet to force redistribution of wealth over the whole world, the redistributing agent being ideally a world government run according to Leftist values.

The one freedom the Left passionately advocates for is that of Each to seek sexual satisfaction of any kind, and for Each to choose a personal sexual identity, all personal choices connected with sex to be protected by law and subsidized financially, where required, by government.

The Left catalogues all Americans and all foreign nations according to a race analysis, according to which the white race is privileged and oppressive, and all institutions, led by government, have a moral duty to compensate non-whites and handicap whites.

All inequalities between sexes, races, and classes are considered by the Left to be unjust, the injustice being perpetrated by institutions and needing to be corrected by government using any means, including quotas for opportunity and advancement; adjustment of standards for inclusion and compensation; enforced limitations on the expression of dissenting opinion; the redistribution of wealth and power.

The Right does not concern itself with these issues unless compelled to, in which case its dismissive opinion of them is:

Man-made global warming is not true and would not be a bad thing if it were.

Sex is a private matter, only of public concern if it harms children.

Race is irrelevant to all political issues.

All justice is personal, having no meaning apart from the individual; standards must be upheld; power belongs to the powerful and cannot be bestowed; wealth is inescapably unequal in a free society, equality and liberty being mutually exclusive.

The biggest issues on the American Right (also in random order) are:

  • Individual freedom
  • The economy
  • Defense
  • The Constitution

A little more:

The Right holds that individual freedom is the highest value. All innovation, all progress, depends on it.  It requires absolute freedom of speech. The prime duty of government is to protect it.

Capitalism is the only system that lifts people out of poverty and secures prosperity. The Right wants the free market to be left to operate without government interference.

The government’s duty of protection requires a strong military to defend the nation from foreign attack; to maintain America’s superpower status of which the Right is proud; and specifically at this time to stop the advance of Islam and its terrorism.

The Constitution established the best possible system of government for a free society and the Right holds that it must be upheld and defended in its entirety.

The Left does not concern itself with these issues unless compelled to, in which case its dismissive opinion of them is:

The individual is less important than the collective, and individual interests are always subordinate to those of the collective.

Capitalism is evil, it values profits above people, it allows some to be rich while it keeps the many poor. The economy needs to be planned centrally by government for the equal good of all.

Wars should never be fought. Spending money on the military is a huge waste. America should not be the world’s policeman. It should not be a superower.

The Constitution is an outdated document. It says nothing about slavery. It stands in the way of an enlightened executive, such as President Obama’s, hampering his laudable efforts to change America into a more equal society.

Plainly, there is no common ground between Left and Right.

Dennis Prager writes at Townhall:

Just about all candidates for president regularly announce their intent to unite Americans, to “bring us together”.

It’s a gimmick.

If they are sincere, they are profoundly naive; if they are just muttering sweet nothings in order to seduce Americans to vote for them, they are manipulative.

In his acceptance speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, John Kerry, one of the most polarizing figures in modern American political history, said, “Maybe some just see us divided into those red states and blue states, but I see us as one America: red, white and blue.”

And President Barack Obama, who has disunited Americans by race, class and gender perhaps more than any president since the beginning of the 20th century, regularly campaigned on the theme of uniting Americans.

In his 2008 victory speech, President-elect Barack Obama said: “We have never been just a collection of … red states and blue states. We are, and always will be, the United States of America.”

In their current campaigns for president, Republican Gov. John Kasich and Democrat Hillary Clinton regularly proclaim their intention to bring Americans together. He, one suspects, because he is naive, and she, because she will say pretzels come from Neptune if it will garner votes.

Bringing people together is actually the theme of John Kasich’s entire campaign.

One headline on the “Meet John” page of his website says, “BRINGING PEOPLE TOGETHER, LIFTING PEOPLE UP.”

Senator Rob Portman said of Kasich on Feb. 1, 2016, “I am endorsing John Kasich because I believe he is the person our country needs to bring Americans together.”

And Clinton, who, according to CNN, is tied with Trump for the most negatives in presidential polling for either Republicans or Democrats since 1984, also speaks repeatedly about her ability and desire to bring Americans together.

The “Hillary Clinton for President Supporters” Facebook page has even said, “We’re in the business of bringing people together.”

What’s more, on April 6, 2016, CNN posted a YouTube video titled: “Hillary Clinton — We need a president who can bring people together.”

Lanny Davis, who served as special counsel to former President Bill Clinton, wrote on The Hill website that “Clinton wants to bring us together”.

Beyond Kasich and Clinton, Sen. Bernie Sanders made this a major theme in one of his ads called “Together”, which begins with Sanders saying, “Our job is to bring people together.”

Even Trump, who divides Republicans – not to mention other Americans – like no Republican ever has, uses this mantra.

A January article on The Hill site quoted Trump saying, “I can really bring people together.”

Gov. Chris Christie introduced Trump on Super Tuesday, and a NJ.com column released that night was titled, “Christie on Super Tuesday: Trump is ‘bringing the country together’.”

For the record, Sen. Ted Cruz speaks about uniting Republicans, but not often about uniting all Americans.

All calls for unity by Democrats are particularly fraudulent. Dividing Americans by race, gender and class is how the left views America and how Democratic candidates seek to win elections.

But calls for unity are meaningless no matter who makes them, because no one who calls for unity tells you what they really mean. What they really mean is that they want to unite Americans around their values — and around their values only.

Would Clinton be willing to unite all Americans around recognizing the human rights of the unborn? Would she be willing to unite all Americans around support for widespread gun ownership?

Of course not.

She is willing to unite Americans provided they adopt her views.

Would Sanders like to “bring people together” in support of reducing corporate and individual income taxes in order to spur the economy?

Would Kasich be in favor of “bringing Americans together” by having them all support increasing the size of government and the national debt? One hopes not.

I first realized the dishonesty of just about all calls for unity during a 10-year period in which I engaged in weekly dialogues with clergy of all faiths. Protestant and Catholic clergymen and women would routinely call for Christian unity. When I asked Protestants if they would support such unity if it entailed them adopting the sacraments of the Catholic Church and recognizing the pope as the Vicar of Christ on Earth, the discussion ended. Similarly, when I asked Catholic priests if they would give up the sacraments and the papacy in order to achieve unity with Protestant Christians, all talk of unity stopped. And, of course, the same would hold true for both Orthodox and non-Orthodox Jews who routinely call for Jewish unity.

Even more absurd are the calls of naive Christians and Jews to have all the “children of Abraham” – Jewish, Christian and Muslim – unite.

The calls themselves can even be dangerous. One would be hard-pressed to name a single free society that was ever united outside of wartime. The only truly united countries are totalitarian states.

So, why do presidential candidates repeat this nonsense every four years? Because Americans fall for it every four years.

But it’s time to grow up.

The gap between the left and right is unbridgeable. Their worldviews are mutually exclusive.

The Left is dangerously wrong.

Greens conspire to allege a conspiracy 7

This is about the criminalization of doubt.

The US Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, told the Senate Judiciary Committee that not only has she discussed internally the possibility of pursuing civil actions against “climate change deniers”, but she has also “referred it to the FBI to consider whether or not it meets the criteria for which we could take action”. 

Some Environmentalists are so absolutely convinced that human activity is really changing the climate of the planet, is really making it dangerously hotter, that they think big rich companies who deal in fossil fuels – the burning of which, they say, causes the alleged hotting up – simply must know this; must have done their own research and discovered it for themselves; and are hiding the documentation, which must exist, and which proves they know it; are deliberately concealing their knowledge and its proofs so that they can go on selling their “evil” product for the “evil” motive of profit, uncaring that it is “doing harm to the planet”, and continuing to deny that there is such a thing as man-made global warming; so they are criminals who need to be prosecuted and punished.

Just think what a heap of suppositions is being compiled here:

  1. That the earth is heating up.
  2. That  human activity is heating up the earth.
  3. That the earth’s heating up is dangerous to human health.
  4. That the burning of fossil fuels is one of the chief human activities to blame for the earth’s heating up.
  5. That the fossil fuel companies have done their own research into these “facts”.
  6. That their research proves – must prove – that their products are much to blame for the earth’s heating up and damaging human health.
  7. That despite having found out all that for themselves they choose to lie about it and say that they do not know these “facts”.
  8. That they are lying when they say they do not have the documentation of their research which “proves” that they do know; and furthermore
  9. That they are doing all this lying and concealing and deceiving in order to be able to continue to sell their products while knowing that they are damaging human health.
  10. That therefore they are committing a variety of crimes including a crime against humanity in general.

We quote from an article at Watts Up With That?:

This is in the news today via “Climate NEXUS”, which is a Madison Ave. PR firm:

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced that he is launching a legal probe into Exxon’s climate denial. The inquiry will look into both consumer and investor protection laws, covering the oil giant’s activity dating back to the 1970s. Schneiderman’s investigation could open “a sweeping new legal front in the battle over climate change”, says the New York Times, which broke the story. Two separate reports by InsideClimate News and the Los Angeles Times uncovered that Exxon has known about the dangers of climate change since the 1970s but sowed doubt by funding climate change skeptics to preserve its business. Exxon has been compared extensively to the tobacco industry, which was convicted of racketeering in 2000 for deliberately deceiving the public about the dangers of its products.

Behind all that is an orchestrated plan; a nasty, spiteful. wholly unjustifiable conspiracy.

So where do these strange ideas come from?

Step forward “Climate Accountability Institute”.

The Climate Accountability Institute (CAI) is …  attempting to marry “climate concerns” to environmentalism and tobacco prohibitionist tactics. …

In 2012 the CAI held a “workshop” in La Jolla California. It was “conceived” by Naomi Oreskes and others, and called Establishing Accountability for Climate Change Damages: Lessons from Tobacco Control.

So from the beginning, these persecutors, these witch-hunters, these self-righteous busybodies had it fixed in their heads that, as with smoking, human health is at issue.

Stanton Glantz, a prominent tobacco control activist scientist was present as were a clutch of lawyers, climate scientists, communication professionals, PR agency heads, bloggers and journalists.

They released a report:

The workshop was an “exploratory, open-ended dialogue” on the use of  “lessons from tobacco-related education, laws, and litigation to address climate change“.

A key breakthrough in the public and legal case for tobacco control came when internal documents came to light showing the tobacco industry had knowingly misled the public. Similar documents may well exist in the vaults of the fossil fuel industry and their trade associations and front groups…

Why do these mythical documents need to be unearthed?

While we currently lack a compelling public narrative about climate change in the United States, we may be close to coalescing around one. Furthermore, climate change may loom larger today in the public mind than tobacco did when public health advocates began winning policy victories.

The reader should take a moment to grasp the momentous logic: We know legally “incriminating documents” (their choice of words) “may” exist, because tobacco activists had a breakthrough with such documents. They need to be found in order to make climate change a “looming threat”  in the public mind.

Try thinking of a more reverse-engineered form of activism.

The first chapter in the report is Lessons from Tobacco Control. It is mainly one section called The Importance of Documents in Tobacco Litigation.

We learn next to nothing about these supposed “documents” from the report. After all, they haven’t been released or even found.

… many participants suggested that incriminating documents may exist that demonstrate collusion among the major fossil fuel companies …

But “the documents” were very valuable. … Since they were so sure they exist, careful plotting was needed on companies whose vaults to raid. …

Stanton Glantz was a vocal workshop participant. … [He] was so excited he proposed using the tobacco archives platform at the University of California San Francisco for climate documents (which were yet to be found). …

In what mode were the documents to be used?

Most importantly, the release of these documents meant that charges of conspiracy or racketeering could become a crucial component of tobacco litigation

Having firmly established that documents convenient to their strategy existed, the delegates moved on to discussing how to obtain them.

The answer was once again clear: “lawsuits”. It was not just lawsuits, it was “Congressional hearings”, “sympathetic state attorney generals” and “false advertising claims”.

State attorneys general can also subpoena documents, raising the possibility that a single sympathetic state attorney general might have substantial success in bringing key internal documents to light

The would-be litigators were inspired to think of other grounds for lawsuits: “False advertising”. “Libel suits”.

Now you know where the line on how “fossil fuel companies ‘knew’ they were doing wrong but yet did it” comes from.

The cries of “it’s a conspiracy!’”are planned and pre-meditated, on lawyers’ advice.

There certainly is a conspiracy underway – of these climate-change fanatics to do as much damage as possible to the fossil fuel industry.

This is where RICO [the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations act] came in:

Richard Ayres, an experienced environmental attorney, suggested that the RICO Act, which had been used effectively against the tobacco industry, could similarly be used to bring a lawsuit against carbon producers. ..

[He] knew starting lawsuits against productive companies wouldn’t look good. They needed to be spun … By dressing [the lawsuits] up as injury “compensation”.

Even if your ultimate goal might be to shut down a company, you still might be wise to start out by asking for compensation for injured parties.

The conspiracy plot thickened:

The suggestions appeared to grow outlandish at every turn. Richard Heede, one of CAI’s members, had come up with a system for blaming individual companies … [His] bizarre formulas, we learn, were received “positively” by “most of the workshop’s participants”. One UCS participant felt that “it could potentially be useful as part of a coordinated campaign to identify key climate ‘wrongdoers'”. Another felt it was useful in blaming faceless corporate entities instead of countries thereby bypassing provoking patriotic impulses in international negotiations.

Heede’s work was funded by Greenpeace. Of note, Greenpeace counsel Jasper Teulings was present at the meeting.

Greenpeace is a profoundly evil organization, as we have explained here.

… Naomi Oreskes suggested that some portion of sea level rise could be attributed to the emissions caused by a single carbon-producing company.

The oil company Exxon made its appearance in her example:

She suggested, “You might be able to say, ‘Here’s Exxon’s contribution to what’s happening to Key West or Venice’.” 

So now we see how they suck statements of “scientific fact” out of their thumbs. 

This was a strategy Glantz liked:

…Stanton Glantz expressed some enthusiasm about such a strategy, based on his experience with tobacco litigation. As he put it, “I would be surprised if the industry chose to attack the calculation that one foot of flooding in Key West could be attributed to ExxonMobil.”

We cannot resist repeating that: They expect that “the industry” will not “attack the calculation that one foot of flooding in Key West could be attributed to ExxonMobil”. !

The conspiratorial tide did not recede. Former computer scientist John Mashey claimed collusion between “climate change deniers” and fossil fuel companies:

[Mashey] presented a brief overview of some of his research, which traces funding, personnel, and messaging connections between roughly 600 individuals …

The penultimate section in the report is on how delegates planned to win “public opinion”.  … (“RICO is not easy. It is certainly not a sure win” – Ayres) and others were wary of drawing the attention of “hostile legislators who might seek to undermine them”.

With public opinion, the delegates were clearly divided. PR mavens, lawyers and activists wanted to cry fraud, paint up villains and create outrage:

To mobilize, people often need to be outraged.

Daniel Yankelovich a “public opinion researcher” involved in “citizen education” appears to have balked at the “sue, sue, sue” chanting. Court cases are useful only after the public had been won over, he said. …

The workshop ended and there was “agreement”. “Documents” needed to be obtained. Legal action was needed both for “wresting potentially useful internal documents” and ‘maintaining pressure on the industry’.

A consensus had emerged.

… an emerging consensus on a strategy that incorporates legal action with a narrative that creates public outrage.

The participants, we learn

…made commitments to try to coordinate future efforts, continue discussing strategies for gaining access to internal documents from the fossil fuel industry and its affiliated climate denial network 

Why is the report important? Because climate activists have done everything the delegates said they wanted done, in the report.

[This includes] the latest letter from US Senators to Exxon, the conspiratorial ‘Exxon Knew’ campaign with the portrayal of old Exxon reports by InsideClimateNews as “internal documents”, the RICO letter from scientists and much more.  … It is almost as if climate activists have willed [incriminating] “documents” into existence – just as they were advised.

Almost as if? That’s exactly what they have done.

And the campaign to criminalize the businessmen who run the fossil fuel industry is gathering pace.

Matthew Vadum writes at Front Page:

Led by agenda-setting New York State and radical left-winger Al Gore the progressive persecution of climate change skeptics by the states is underway.

Top law enforcement officers in several states are joining with the Chicken Littles of green activism to weaponize the scientifically dubious argument that human activity is not only changing the earth’s climate but that unprecedented world catastrophe awaits unless draconian, economy-killing carbon emission controls are imposed more or less immediately.

The litigation offensive has nothing to do with justice. It is aimed at forcing those few remaining holdouts in the business community who stubbornly cling to science to confess their thought crimes and submit to the know-nothing Left’s climate superstitions. It is part of modern-day environmentalism’s ongoing assault on knowledge, human progress, markets, and the rule of law.

Repent and embrace the true green faith or else you’ll be investigated and denounced as a climate criminal, is the message of “Inspector Gotcha,” New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman.

“It’s too early to say what we’re going to find,” he said of the five-month-old witch hunt aimed at his current target, the gigantic ExxonMobil, at a press conference this week in Lower Manhattan. “We intend to work as aggressively as possible, but also as carefully as possible.”

The New York Times previously reported that Schneiderman is looking into “whether the company lied to the public about the risks of climate change or to investors about how such risks might hurt the oil business. … For several years, advocacy groups with expertise in financial analysis have been warning that fossil fuel companies might be overvalued in the stock market, since the need to limit climate change might require that much of their coal, oil and natural gas be left in the ground.

“The First Amendment, ladies and gentlemen, does not give you the right to commit fraud,” Schneiderman said this week.

Of course that assertion is true on its face but that doesn’t necessarily mean whatever he’s calling fraud is actually fraud. How can rejecting a theory – a wild, unproven, apocalyptic theory based on creative computer modeling and little else – about future climate conditions constitute fraud?

The New York Times now reports that the attorneys general of Massachusetts and the Virgin Islands said this week they would join Schneiderman’s politically motivated so-called investigation into whether ExxonMobil lied to investors and the public for years about the alleged threat posed by climate change. California opened its own investigation into the company last year. …

At Schneiderman’s press conference, former Vice President Gore, whose understanding of science roughly mirrors that of the Unabomber, was in attendance along with the attorneys general of Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, Vermont, Virginia, and the Virgin Islands.

Gore implied ExxonMobil was just as bad as the tobacco industry which allegedly denied risks posed by its products for years. State attorneys general were an important part of the effort to nail Big Tobacco, he said.

“I do think the analogy may hold up rather precisely,” said Gore whose longtime meal ticket has been global warming. … Gore reportedly had a net worth of about $1.7 million at the turn of the century. But global warming hysteria cultivated by Gore grew over the years and by 2013 his fortune had grown to more than $200 million.

Schneiderman, a left-wing fanatic, is gearing up for what amounts to political show trials to enforce the Left’s party line on anthropogenic global warming. …

This radical inquisitor whom Politico reported had “spent his career building an ideological infrastructure for the left,” is building a gallows for those with the temerity to reject the lies of the misanthropic global-warmist agenda.

And what is his deep, emotional, fanatical motive?

Schneiderman is a leftist’s leftist, a zealous true believer intent on, in his own words, “slow[ing] down the bone-crushing machinery of the contemporary conservative movement.” …

The business community is wary of Schneiderman — and for good reason. …

It needs to be said that Schneiderman’s pursuit of ExxonMobil sure smells like political payback.

As Dr. Steven J. Allen, my learned Capital Research Center colleague, has reported, ExxonMobil used to be a major contributor to the scandal-plagued Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation, as well as a sponsor of the annual meetings of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI). But as the foundation became inundated by adverse publicity related to the fact that it functions as a clearinghouse for future presidential favors from Hillary Clinton, ExxonMobil reportedly stopped giving it money.

It’s no coincidence that Secretary Clinton turned on the company last fall, demanding it be investigated for giving grants to warming-skeptic organizations. “There’s a lot of evidence that they misled the public,” she declared.

Allen writes:

“In November, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman — a top supporter of Clinton — launched an investigation into the company that, in the words of the Wall Street Journal, ‘marks a dangerous new escalation of the Left’s attempt to stamp out all disagreement on global-warming science and policy … demanding Exxon’s documents on climate research from 1977 to 2015’.”

Was Schneiderman’s newfound interest in ExxonMobil piqued by green idealism?

The question answers itself.

We would say, “Let that be a lesson to all companies that bribed, or were subjected to extortion by the Clintons!” – but we know it won’t be. Only if Hillary Clinton fails to win the presidency will companies (and foreign governments) even consider turning their backs on the Clintons and closing their purses.

Is it not passing strange that such monuments of capitalism as Exxonmobil, so likely to be targets of the Left, habitually give huge donations to leftist politicians like the Clintons? Does it never strike them that in the long run – though the short-term benefits they buy may be sweet – they are paying for their own destruction?

A very disgraceful speech 1

Barack Hussein Obama is sympathetic to Communist regimes because he was raised from infancy to be a Communist and has continued throughout his life to like Communism.

As a young adult he was trained in the “community organizing” school of Communist radical Saul Alinsky.

In 1986, at the age of twenty-three … Obama was hired by the Alinsky team “to organize residents on the South Side [of Chicago] while learning and applying Alinsky’s philosopy of street-level democracy”.

So David Horowitz writes in his book Radicals*. The chapter titled A Radical Machiavelli outlines the whole story of Obama’s rise to power, diligently following the Alinsky way in order to use power for the radical transformation of America.

It should come as no surprise to anyone who has been paying attention that Obama chooses to make friends with Communist dictators – notably, this month, with the blood-drenched Castro Brothers who are still ruling Cuba.

They weren’t very eager to entertain him. No Castro or his deputy met the president of the United States at the airport when he landed. Raul Castro took him to a ball game, where Obama cheered delightedly (soon after he’d been informed that jihadis had bombed America’s NATO ally Belgium, causing massive loss of life and injury). Later he danced the tango. And he made a speech.

What did he say?

We quote from an article by Carlos Eire at PowerLine:

A classic example of Obamaspeak, this boilerplate speech consisted of four essential elements: some truths (few in number), several myths (plentiful), many platitudes (even more plentiful), and a string of lies (all braided with the myths and platitudes). …

Nowhere in this speech do the Castro brothers show up. Nowhere are their many crimes against humanity mentioned. Nowhere is any blame laid on them for enslaving and ruining “the Cuban people” or for poisoning relations with the United States. In their place, another abstraction shows up to play the part of the villain: “ideology”.

As he has done countless times before, Obama inserts himself in history as the ultimate slayer of the “Cold War” dragon, which is always drawn by him as a caricature, a fairy monster of sorts with no teeth and no fire in his breath, whose scales are fluffy and whose wings are as diaphanous as all abstract thoughts. “Ideology” in Obamaspeak, is no real threat to life and limb, no powerful enslaving force, but an illusory phantom from some distant past …

To ensure that his Cuban audience recognized his power to dispel this toothless abstraction, Obama [told] them: “From the beginning of my time in office, I’ve urged the people of the Americas to leave behind the ideological battles of the past.”

Never mind the Castro brothers, or the tens of thousands of Cubans murdered by them, the hundreds of thousands imprisoned and tortured, or the two million driven into exile, or the nuclear missiles they pointed at the United States, or the soldiers and spies they’ve sent all over the world, or the terrorists they have sponsored.

Anywhere you look, it is easy to spot platitudinous metaphors and abstractions in this Obamaesque tapestry. There are so many of them, in fact, that they are hard to tally. So let’s just mention the more disturbing ones.

“In many ways, the United States and Cuba are like two brothers who’ve been estranged for many years,” he said, “even as we share the same blood.”

What blood? As it turns out, the closest Obama came to identifying that blood was to babble on about superficial similarities between Cuban and American culture, especially in the realms of music and sports.

Obama also spoke of “hope” repeatedly. He even had the nerve to tell Cubans of “hope that is rooted in the future that you can choose and that you can shape, and that you can build for your country.”

What hope, as long as the Castro dynasty is in control? What is this amorphous “hope” or this amorphous “future”? What of this “choosing” and “shaping”? How is that to happen when there is no civil society in Cuba, no rule of law, no chance to express oneself freely, no private property, no free market economy? …

The biggest lies in the speech have to do with history, and all of these falsehoods come straight from the Castro regime’s Ministry of Truth …

In Obama’s thinly disguised Marxist narrative there is a constant dialectic between an imperialist power (the United States) and an unjustly exploited subaltern (Cuba), and in this poisoned relationship, the United States is responsible for most of Cuba’s ills.

The exploitation, said Obama, began with the Spanish-American War: “The blue waters beneath Air Force One once carried American battleships to this island — to liberate, but also to exert control over Cuba.”

After that, with “control” over Cuba, the United States could not help but behave very badly. “Before 1959,” said Obama, “ some Americans saw Cuba as something to exploit, ignored poverty, enabled corruption.”

This is pure Castroite propaganda, which all Cubans born after 1959 have had force-fed to them as “history”. And in this false “history”, of course, it is always assumed that the Castro are the heroes who rescued Cubans from all of the exploitation.

That an American president should parrot such lies tells us a lot about the character of such a president, and the real-world value of his speech to the enslaved Cuban people.

One of the biggest [lies] is the claim that the so-called embargo “was not working” and that it was “hurting the Cuban people”.  This could be seen as the linchpin of Obama’s argument for “normalizing” relations. It sounds reasonable. But the truth is that the embargo was not put into place to force the collapse of the Castro regime, but to contain the damage it could do to the United States and its allies. And as far as that goal was concerned, the so-called embargo was indeed working.

As to the claim that the embargo hurt the Cuban people, nothing could be further from the truth. What really impoverished the Cuban people and made them destitute was the insane economic policies of the Castro regime. Cuba has been trading with every other country in the world while the embargo has been in place, and for the past decade and a half the island has been visited by tens of millions of non-American tourists. Yet, despite the opportunities made possible by such exchanges, poverty, deprivation, and repression continued to be the lot of all Cubans.

This lie about the “embargo” forms the basis for another equally heinous one, the claim that “the United States of America is normalizing relations with the Cuban people”. …

There is no real “normalization” going on insofar as the lives of Cubans are concerned. In fact, repression has increased and the economy has worsened since Obama began warming up to the Castro regime in December 2014. Secondly, the so-called “normalization” process does not involve “the Cuban people” at all, but only the Castro regime, that is, Raul Castro, his geriatric military junta, and his slightly younger oligarchs.

Obama also lied about the changes supposedly taking place in Cuba, such as the economic improvements brought about by self-employment, which are highlighted with a series of bogus feel-good stories about cuentapropistas or entrepreneurs. Every Cuban knows that the self-employment ruse is one of the biggest lies of all, and no ticket to prosperity or freedom, because the Castro regime owns absolutely everything on the island. …

The speech reaches a crescendo with the invocation of the term “reconciliation” …

What makes the use of this term incorrect in the case of Cuba – and what makes all talk of “reconciliation” a lie – is that genuine reconciliation involves penance and an admission of guilt on the part of wrongdoers. Those guilty of the worst sins in recent Cuban history – the Castro brothers and their supporters – have not only refused to admit their guilt, but actually remain in power and refuse to stop abusing the human rights of the Cuban people.

Until those who rule Cuba step aside and admit their guilt – and until those at the top ranks are tried in a court of justice for their many crimes against humanity – there can be no genuine “reconciliation” in Cuba.

To speak of “reconciliation” as the payoff of Obama’s many concessions to the Castro regime is akin to speaking of “reconciliation” between a rapist and his victim while the rapist continues to rape his victim repeatedly, with no remorse and no end in sight.

Finally, to sum up his own vapid, narcissistic, and self-aggrandizing rhetoric, Obama closed the speech with a Spanish rendition of his 2008 campaign slogan, si se puede (yes, it’s possible, or yes we can).

Yes, sure. Tell that to the Ladies in White, Obama, please, as they are beaten and arrested every Sunday. Tell that to the political prisoners who rot in tiny cells. Tell that to the Cuban schoolchildren who are fed lies and propaganda disguised as “education” and who have no hope of ever earning more than twenty dollars a month as adults. Tell that to the mother whose son or daughter just drowned while trying to flee on a flimsy raft from the hell that is Castro’s Cuba.

Tell them, please, how anything is possible other than what the Castro regime deigns to dole out to them.

Until there are no more masters and no more slaves, there can be no end to slavery.

For Obama to fling his campaign slogan “yes we can” to Cubans is no different from some Northern abolitionist visiting a Southern plantation to tell the slaves to ignore their chains and think happy thoughts.

To employ that recycled slogan in Cuba was downright shameful, and a very fitting end to a very disgraceful speech.

 

*Radicals: Portraits of a Destructive Passion by David Horowitz, Regnery, 2012. (Our quotation comes from p. 181.)

Posted under communism, Cuba, tyranny, United States by Jillian Becker on Thursday, March 24, 2016

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The despotism of the United States 4

Why does the Washington establishment need to be uprooted and thrown out?

Why do millions of Americans long for a fresh start, a swift scraping away of all the foul accretions that adhere to government like poisonous barnacles?

Paul Driessen answers these vital questions. He writes at Townhall:

Washington is out of control. Legislators, judges and unelected bureaucrats want to control our lives, livelihoods and living standards, with no accountability even for major errors, calculated deception, or deliberate, often illegal assaults on our liberties and on citizens who resist the advancing Leviathan.

These themes animate Republican and conservative politics because they are happening – regularly.

The Competitive Enterprise Institute is renowned for its annual Ten Thousand Commandments reports on federal rules. A scary but mesmerizing new analysis now maps how the Washington bureaucracy lawlessly imposes agendas that all too frequently contravene or disregard what We the People support, what is best for the nation, and even what Congress has enacted or refused to encode in legislation. …

No one even knows how many Executive Branch agencies there are – estimates range from 60 to 438 – much less how many new rules they implement and impose each year. Officially … they issued a staggering 3,554 new rules in 2014, while President Obama signed “only” 226 new laws enacted by Congress. Worse, of the 53,838 (!) formal final regulations included in the Federal Register from 2001 through 2014, only 160 (0.3%) received a “cost-benefit” analysis; we have no idea how the rest affect us. …

This does not include tens of thousands of decrees issued in the form of:

* notices, bulletins, proclamations, circulars, guidance memos, and new or revised interpretations, policy statements and procedures;

* investigations, inquiries, warning letters, negotiated settlements to legal actions (often involving collusion between agencies and activist groups), explicit or veiled threats of legal action, armed agents raiding homes and businesses, or adverse publicity, coordinated with activists and the media; as well as

* blog posts, news releases, and emails or telephone calls to citizens or company employees.

All these actions have the force and effect of law. But few or none are covered by Administrative Procedures Act “public notice and comment” requirements, so they often escape scrutiny by courts, watchdogs and Congress. Many are supported only by “homogenized”, manipulated data; elaborate, imaginative or imaginary regulatory benefits; cavalier dismissal of costs; and no mention of benefits from the activity, chemical, energy source, industry or jobs being regulated, sometimes into oblivion.

EPA’s Clean Power Plan assumes that shutting down America’s coal-fired power plants – a tiny fraction of such facilities worldwide – can somehow stop climate change that is actually governed by numerous powerful natural forces over which humans have absolutely no control. The plan also assumes any global warming will be dangerous and ignores the many thousands who will be rendered jobless.

A “social cost of carbon” scheme concocted by a multitude of federal agencies makes the same faulty assumptions. It then hypothesizes every imaginable and illusory “cost” of carbon dioxide emissions – to forests, agriculture, water resources, “forced migration” of people and wildlife, human health and disease, coastal cities, ecosystems and wetlands. But it completely ignores every one of the obvious and enormous benefits of using fossil fuels … and of CO2’s immense fertilizing effects on forest and crop growth.

President Obama imposed both of these programs because Congress refused to enact almost 700 different cap-tax-and-trade and other climate bills. Rather than working with Congress to achieve at least some of what he wanted, Mr. Obama simply had his agencies issue decrees

Where Congress has enacted legislation that the president dislikes – on illegal immigration or the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate, for example – he simply tells his agencies not to enforce the “offensive” provisions. Meanwhile, Endangered Species Act rules are enforced with an iron fist against ranching, oil and mining operations, but ignored in the case of wind turbines and solar installations.

Under collusive sue-and-settle lawsuits, parties impacted by decisions never have an opportunity to speak or present evidence, or even be notified that a suit has been filed or adjudicated, until it is too late.

The entire system allows unelected, unaccountable government officials to decide winners and losers, and reward cronies and allies with taxpayer-funded grants and subsidies, while punishing critics and enemies.  “Progressive” judges defer to “agency discretion” and give bureaucrats free rein to do as they please, even when the rules, decisions and decrees do not comply with legal, constitutional or scientific requirements.

No citizen, small business or even large corporation can possibly even know all these edicts exist, much less understand or comply with them. Moreover, at least 4,500 carry criminal penalties, many regardless of any intent to violate a rule or commit a crime – and “ignorance of the law is no excuse”.  

Federalism, states’ rights, state and local laws and customs, and personal liberties increasingly cease to matter.

The federal Goliath now costs US families, businesses, hospitals and organizationsover $1.9 trillion a year! That is twice the entire federal budget in 1981. It’s equal to the entire budget in 1986, nearly half the incomprehensible Obama budget for FY-2017, more than the budgets of all other countries except China.

“The champions of socialism call themselves progressives, but they [resist] every kind of improvement,” economist and political analyst Ludwig von Mises observed 72 years ago. “They call themselves liberals, but they are intent upon abolishing liberty. They call themselves democrats, but they yearn for dictatorship. They call themselves revolutionaries, but they want to make the government omnipotent.”

The same agencies write, impose, enforce and adjudicate the rules, and impose punishment for infractions. They work tirelessly and imperiously to “fundamentally transform” our nation’s legal, energy, economic and social systems …

They impose edicts that would never be supported by the People or enacted by Congress, and that they rarely if ever apply to themselves. They lavish billions on allies, while denying funding and legitimacy to critics, siccing IRS dogs on opposition groups, and threatening civil and criminal “racketeering” actions against anyone who “denies” the alleged “reality” of dangerous manmade climate change.

They seek to ban fossil fuels, biotech crops and insecticides – even from Third World families suffering from abject poverty, rampant malnutrition and disease, and a near total absence of electricity. They do all they can to silence and punish alternative views, and even the notion that there can be alternative views.

For seven years, our “Try and stop me” president and administration have used and abused their powers to impose their agenda.

What we need now is a “Try and make me” president, who will refuse to enforce their edicts. Who will use his pen, phone and power to review them, root out any fraud and abuse behind them, and defund and bury them. Who will work with Congress to restore the rule of law and our Constitution, economic growth, and the role of personal liberties, opportunities and responsibilities. 

Is there a candidate for the presidency who could be that “Try and make me” leader?

Posted under tyranny, United States by Jillian Becker on Saturday, March 19, 2016

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Inside the caliphate 1

This video was made by two women, at the risk of their lives, in the ISIS-ruled Syrian city of Al-Raqqah.

It provides a glimpse of what life is like for Muslim women under strictly enforced sharia law.

Posted under Islam, Muslims, Slavery, tyranny by Jillian Becker on Thursday, March 17, 2016

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Comes the hour comes the man 8

Every day, as the Fascist Left becomes more openly anti-freedom, Donald Trump becomes more necessary.

It’s bad enough that the threat of tyrannical collectivism is growing daily as the Democratic Party, and the street mobs financed by deeply evil men like George Soros, intensify their war against freedom; it’s worse that the Republican Party fails to rise to the challenge, and would rather capitulate than fight. The Republican cowards cannot even see that they have a leader who is attracting tens of thousands to their ranks and is already frightening the enemy.

David Horowitz writes at Front Page:

The mob that came to disrupt the Trump rally in Chicago was neither spontaneous nor innocent, nor new. It was a mob that has been forming ever since the Seattle riots against the World Trade Organization in 1999, whose target was global capitalism. The Seattle rioters repeated their outrages for the next two years and then transformed into the so-called “anti-war” movement to save the Saddam dictatorship in Iraq. Same leaders, funders and troops. The enemy was always America and its Republican defenders. When Obama invaded countries and blew up families in Muslim countries, there was no anti-war movement because Obama was one of them, and they didn’t want to divide their support.

In 2012 the so-called “anti-war” movement reformed as “Occupy Wall Street”. They went on a rampage creating cross-country riots protesting the One Percent and provided a whipping boy for Obama’s re-election campaign. Same leaders, same funders and troops.

In 2015 the same leftwing forces created and funded Black Lives Matter and lynch mobs in Ferguson and Baltimore who targeted “white supremacists” and police.

Behind all the mobs was the organized left – MoveOn.org, the public sector unions run by Sixties leftovers,  and the cabal of anti-American billionaires led by George Soros.

The mobs themselves were composed of the hate-filled foot soldiers of the political left.

Now these forces have gathered in the campaign to elect the Vermont communist and are focusing their venom on Donald Trump. The obvious plan is to make Republicans toxic while driving a wedge through the Republican Party. The plan is defeat Republicans in November so that the destructive forces they have set in motion in the Democratic Party can finish the wrecking job that Obama started.

One of the professionally produced signs at the Chicago mob scene proclaimed, “This is what democracy looks like.” Actually it is exactly what fascism looks like. As every student of the Thirties knows, the break up of democratic forums by Nazi and Communist thugs paved the way for Hitler’s election. Just like the mobs of the Thirties, today’s left is driven by racial and class hate, and is utterly contemptuous of the democratic process – hence the effort to hang the Ferguson cop before the trial and to prevent Trump from expounding his views in Chicago.

And what has been the reaction of the presidential candidates, particularly those who propose to save the country? It is to blame Trump as though he and not the left had instigated the riot. If you play with matches like Trump did, opined Hillary Clinton, you’re likely to start a fire. This is the same Hillary Clinton who has compared Republicans to terrorists and called them racists, and who once accused a “vast right-wing conspiracy” of inventing her husband’s paramour. The Democratic Party has officially endorsed the Black Lives Matter racists and rioters.

But it is not only the left who is attempting to blame Trump for the Chicago debacle.

According to the proudly positive John Kasich, it was Trump who created the “toxic environment” that led to the riot – not the fascist movement that has been metastasizing in our universities and streets for more than a decade. In other words, when you finally go on the attack, attack a Republican rather than a Democrat. That way you get a pass.

Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz and their spokespeople piled on Trump as well. “Ted Cruz Claims Trump Is To Blame For Violence At His Rallies,” ran a headline in the leftwing New York Times. 

His Republican attackers attempted to shame Trump for speaking to the anger of his conservative supporters instead of bringing everyone together – those who claim we live in a white supremacist society and the whites they are attacking, those who claim that Republicans are terrorists and racists and the victims of this abuse. As though you can create unity with people who hate you because you are white or rich, or believe that America is a nation worth saving. The fact is that Trump’s anger is pretty controlled, considering the hate-filled environment of Islamic terrorists, illegal immigrants, event disrupters and rival candidates openly smearing him. 

He is often guilty of over-reach – “punch him in the nose” directed at one disrupter, but this is hardly the sin his detractors suggest in comparing him to Mussolini. That is a much great violence to the man who is its target. Aside from Trump’s compulsive over-reach what is wrong with anger in the current political context?

Is it wrong to be angry at what Obama and the Democrats and the progressive mobs are doing to our country? How is this dissociation from Trump mob attack not the same surrender to political correctness that conservatives like Rubio and Cruz claim to reject? Aren’t Cruz and Rubio angry at what is being done to our country? Why are they willing to validate the hypocritical slanders of Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, two architects of our disasters? 

This is the reality we must never forget: There is an anti-American radical in the White House who – with the support of his party – has delivered nuclear weapons, ballistic missiles and a hundred billion dollars to our mortal enemies in Teheran who have declared their intentions to kill us. This suicidal deal was not an oversight, as Rubio has correctly observed, but the result of decades of thinking that America and Israel are adversaries, and our enemies are their victims.

The extremists of #Never Trump exemplify the malaise Republicans have been prisoners of for years, which is what the primary revolt is about.

Why was there no #Never Obama movement in 2012? For Republicans such a movement would be unthinkable. It would be too angry. It would be called racist. On the other hand, no one will call us racist for attacking a fellow Republican. So let’s join the left in smearing one of our own and hope that we can scrub off the stigmas that Democrats have tarred us with in the process. We’re not racists. Let’s not fight Obama, which will prove that we are. Let’s have respectful words for the lynch mob left.  If we capitulate the disaster unfolding before us, maybe it will go away. That is what the Trump crowd is angry about and mainstream Republicans should be too.

At the outset of the presidential debates all the Republican candidates pledged to support the party’s choice in November. Extra pressure was put on Trump to do so and he did. But now that millions of Republicans have cast their ballots for Trump, Rubio and Kasich are threatening to renege on their pledge, and destroy both the party and the country in the process.

And Cruz, while sniping at Trump’s alleged role in inciting the leftists is notably non-committal about whether he will support a Trump primary victory. None of them explain how you can fight fascist leftists without actually fighting them and opening yourself to the charge of anger.  

Perhaps it is money from the #Never Trump crowd – the extremists who want to thwart the popular vote and fatally split the party – that is behind this perfidy. But as someone who until very recently held high opinions of Rubio and Cruz, I am hoping that it is not too late for somebody to wake them up. I am hoping that somebody says: Cut it out. Come to your senses. Your scorched earth warfare is threatening the very existence of the right. Trump isn’t the enemy. Like you he is opposed to the Iran deal, supports a secure border, recognizes the Islamist threat, wants to reduce taxes and make the country solvent, and is greatly expanding the Republican base. Attempt to beat him at the polls if you think he shouldn’t be president but let the voters decide the result, and respect their decision. The alternative is a fratricidal war that could drive large numbers of conservatives away from the polls, and whose beneficiaries will only be America’s enemies at home and abroad.

Which Republican candidate has the force, the fortitude, the guts, the stones – and the following – to stand up to the persistent and now violent onslaught by the fascist hordes of the Left?

The hour has given birth to the man.

Cutting out Europe’s tongue 6

I have sworn to Allah, that any dog who mocks the Sharia, or mocks Islam, or blames it, we will cut out his tongue. I say this without hesitation: We will cut out his tongue! That’s it. The time of transgressing against Islam, and speaking insolence, has passed — it is over. Today, the People of Lies defend their falsehoods with great zeal; so shall we defend Islam with all our might — no matter what it costs, no matter what it costs! Let the whole world burn, but Islam not be mocked.

So proclaimed Dr. Abdullah Badr, a professor of Islamic exegesis at Cairo’s pre-eminent Islamic university Al Azhar, on Egyptian television in October, 2012.

In November 2012, Raymond Ibrahim wrote about it at Gatestone:

None of this is figurative. Days after Dr. Badr made these pronouncements, on October 30, a roaming band of Salafis in Suez attacked, severely beat and tried to cut the hand off a young Egyptian grocery store worker because he prevented one of their gang from using the store bathroom without permission. The bearded Salafi had said: “I do not ask for permission.”

The assaulted youth’s brother, angered at what had happened, then “insulted the men”.  Accordingly, Suez’s new roaming band of Sharia enforcers, who call themselves the “Authority for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice” after Saudi Arabia’s “morality police”,  claimed that he had insulted Islam and ordered that the man’s tongue be cut out. …

The father of the two boys … [said that] one of the Salafis … “kept screaming at the top of his voice that his son has ‘insulted the religion! His tongue must be severed as soon as possible!'” With help from others, the youth managed to escape Sharia justice. …

On May 3, 2011, a poet in Yemen had his tongue cut out by “unknown assailants”, supposedly for writing a poem in praise of the Yemeni dictator Ali Abdallah Saleh, who opposes the Islamist uprising there. …

Also, in April 2011, in “moderate” Bahrain, a muezzin was attacked, beaten, tortured — including with boiling oil — and had his tongue cut, reportedly to Islam’s war cry, “Allahu Akbar!” in a wave of violence by Bahrain’s opposition forces.

In the non-Muslim world, Muslims are also hacking at tongues. In Australia a  Muslim man was recently sentenced to eight-and-a-half years’ jail time “for severing a woman’s tongue“.  …

Why so much violence against the tongue? For the same reason that Dr. Badr would rather see the whole world set on fire rather than Islam insulted: the tongue — which utters words and free speech — is fundamental to exposing and combating the things of Islam, whether formal Sharia law or the violent, supremacist culture born of it. As the Sheikh of Islam himself, Ibn Taymiyya, once wrote, “Waging war verbally against Islam may be worse than waging war physically.”

The Islamic powers are ever more angrily and vociferously demanding that all criticism of their appalling religion and its barbarously cruel laws be suppressed under pain of punishment.

And the West is yielding to the demand.

These are among news reports assembled at The Clarion Project under the title What you can (and can’t) say in Europe today:

In France:

The editor of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo announced the magazine will no longer publish cartoons of the Islamic Prophet Mohammed. Six months earlier, [Muslim] gunmen slaughtered 12 people in the magazine’s offices, including the magazine’s editor, senior staff and cartoonists.

The magazine’s most prominent cartoonist, Rénald “Luz” Luzier, said earlier he would no longer draw the Prophet Mohammed since it “no longer interests me.” He quit the magazine altogether.

In Denmark:

Unlike Norway and Iceland, Denmark decided not to cancel old laws against blasphemy, despite the fact the European Union published guidelines protecting freedom of religion and belief. The guidelines state “the right to freedom of religion or belief, as enshrined in relevant international standards, does not include the right to have a religion or a belief that is free from criticism or ridicule.”

A year after the February 14-15, 2015 shooting attacks in Copenhagen by Islamists – one at an event called Art, Blasphemy and Freedom of Expression – the Danish government convicted and fined Danish citizen Flemming Nielsen, for a November 2013 Facebook post critical of Islam.

In Austria:

Dutch politician Geert Wilders is under investigation by Austrian authorities for a speech he made in Vienna recently that compared the Quran with Hitler’s Mein Kampf and suggesting the former be banned as is the later.

Wilders, whose party  has been at the top or nearly at the top of the polls in Netherland for many years, made the comments in the context of arguing that members of parliaments of a nation that are accepting immigrants should have a say in the immigration policies.

In 2007, Wilders was acquitted [in the Netherlands] of an accusation of hate speech for remarks he made that were critical of Islam.

In Europe’s greatest extension, America, Robert Spencer wrote at Jihad Watch in December 2015:

December 17, 2015 ought henceforth to be a date which will live in infamy, as that was the day that some of the leading Democrats in the House of Representatives came out in favor of the destruction of the First Amendment. Sponsored by among others, Muslim Congressmen Keith Ellison and Andre Carson, as well as Eleanor Holmes Norton, Loretta Sanchez, Charles Rangel, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Joe Kennedy, Al Green, Judy Chu, Debbie Dingell, Niki Tsongas, John Conyers, José Serrano, Hank Johnson, and many others, House Resolution 569condemns “violence, bigotry, and hateful rhetoric towards Muslims in the United States.” The Resolution has been referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary.

Spencer commented bitterly:

The leaders of free societies are eagerly lining up to relinquish [their] freedoms. The glorious diversity of our multicultural future demands it. And that future will be grand indeed, a gorgeous mosaic, as everyone assures us, once those horrible “Islamophobes” are forcibly silenced. Everyone will applaud that. Most won’t even remember, once the jihad agenda becomes clear and undeniable to everyone in the U.S. on a daily basis and no one is able to say a single thing about it, that there used to be some people around who tried to warn them.

The first cause of the greatness of Europe and the West was Critical Examination.

As we have said before, one way or another, many times:

The idea that every belief, every assumption, should be critically examined started the might of Europe. When those old Greek thinkers who founded our civilization learnt and taught that no one has a monopoly of truth or ever will have, they launched the intellectual adventure that has carried the human race – not without a long interval in the doldrums – literally to the skies. Socrates taught the utility of suspicion. He is reputed to have said, “The highest form of human excellence is to question oneself and others.”

Totally opposed to this intellectual openness were the churches with their dogma. It was the rediscovery of the Greek legacy in the Renaissance in the teeth of Christian dogmatism, and the new freedom from religious persecution exploited by the philosophers of the Enlightenment that re-launched the West on its intellectual progress, to become the world’s nursery of innovation and its chief factory of ideas.

Our civilization cannot survive without this openness. Critical examination is the breath that keeps it alive. But it is in danger of suffocation. It is more threatened now than it has been for the last four hundred years by dogmatisms: Socialism, Environmentalism, “political correctness” –  and above all by Islam which absolutely forbids criticism.

Islam is backward because it does not permit criticism. It does not allow any questioning of its beliefs. It punishes doubt and dissent. If we give up criticism at the behest of our enemy, we will be abandoning the mainstay of our might and poisoning our civilization at its root.

If we silence our objections to Islam, we allow Muslims to claim that it is the Truth. Nothing is more important for our survival than freedom of thought. We cannot accept any restriction on our expression of ideas. None. Ever.

The sacredness in which a belief is held by its devotees cannot preserve it from doubt. Reason knows no blasphemy. If Islam appalls us, we must be free to say so in whatever terms we choose. If Muslims take offense, let them try winning us to their beliefs by arguing with us and not by killing us.

Violence is no argument. Murder persuades nobody. It might compel obedience, but never intellectual conviction.

Let us express our offense at being assailed by blunt ignorance, and at being ordered by foolish politicians to hold our tongues. And our implacable outrage at being threatened by Muslims with having our tongues cut out, both figuratively and literally.

“Compassionate totalitarianism” 4

President George W. Bush was probably the most maligned president of modern times (though fans of President Obama make that claim for him).

Last night Rudi Giuliani, the great former mayor of New York, said in an interview with Sean Hannity on Fox News, that President George W. Bush had kept Americans safe after the Muslim mass-murder attack of 9/11, and for that America owes him honor and gratitude. We agree. In practice President Bush did a good job.

Where we did not agree with President George W. Bush himself, was on a matter of theory: his political philosophy of “compassionate conservatism”. (It’s a sentimentality that Governor John Kasich now puts in his shopwindow as he advertises himself for the Republican presidential nomination.)

Compassion is an emotion. Individuals feel it or hold it as a moral value. But the state has no emotion. A government has no heart. Government is for protection – of the nation by means of a strong military defense, and of the individual by the rule of law strictly and indiscriminately applied. Government is not a father or mother or nanny or sugar daddy. In conservative philosophy, it has no duty to provide for the people it protects. It has no means to do so. It is not the nation’s money earner. It ought not to be an agency that forces some people to give it money so that it can hand it to other people. .

But in socialist philosophy, providing for the people’s needs is government’s chief function. Socialist government starts by “redistributing” private wealth: taking money from those who have earned it and giving it to those who have not. The long-term plan is for government (euphemistically, “the people”) to “own the means of production, distribution and exchange”. In plain words, to own everything. A socialist government is in loco parentis. The people are its children whom it must house, feed, educate, medicate, and make all decisions for. It knows what is best for you, and your duty is to obey it. It will give you what it judges you need – or withhold it if you step out of line. If you are disobedient, you will be punished. If you put your personal interests above the government-ordained interests of the collective “All”,  you may find yourself provided with no house, no food, no schooling, no doctoring, and – once the grip of a socialist regime has become absolute, as in Russia in the last century – no means by which you can supply these needs for yourself.

Socialists, Communists, Marxists – let’s say Leftists in general – believe that History (a sort of god whose prophet was Karl Marx) is moving humankind in a certain direction it has pre-ordained. Towards a world in which people live without private possessions. Where each is concerned only with the good of All. (Invention, which is essentially an individual enterprise is thus made impossible, so no actual advance is ever made.) Moving towards that utopia is what Leftists mean by “progress“. 

That’s why they call themselves “progressives”.

Professor Walter Williams writes at Townhall:

Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders seek to claim the “progressive” mantle. Both claim the other is not a true progressive. Clinton teased Sanders as being the “self-proclaimed gatekeeper for progressivism”. Bernie Sanders said that Hillary Clinton can’t be both a moderate and a progressive and that most progressives don’t take millions from Wall Street. But let’s talk about the origins of progressivism. It’s only historical ignorance that could explain black affinity for progressivism.

The Progressive Era is generally seen as the period from 1890 to 1920. President Woodrow Wilson, a leading [Democrat and] progressive, had a deep contempt for the founding principles of our nation. Progress for Wilson was to get “beyond the Declaration of Independence”,  because “it is of no consequence to us”. President Wilson implored that “all that progressives ask or desire is permission – in an era when ‘development,’ ‘evolution,’ is the scientific word – to interpret the Constitution according to the Darwinian principle; all they ask is recognition of the fact that a nation is a living thing and not a machine”.

President Woodrow Wilson was a believer in notions of racial superiority and inferiority. He was so enthralled with D.W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation movie, which glorified the Ku Klux Klan, that he invited various dignitaries to the White House to view it with him. … When President Wilson introduced racial segregation to the civil service, the NAACP and the National Independent Political League protested. Wilson vigorously defended it, arguing that segregation was in the interest of Negroes. Booker T. Washington wrote during Wilson’s first term, “I have never seen the colored people so discouraged and bitter as they are at the present time.”

President Woodrow Wilson’s predecessor, Theodore Roosevelt, was another progressive captivated by the notions of racial inferiority. He opposed voting rights for black Americans, which were guaranteed by the 15th Amendment, on the grounds that the black race was still in its adolescence. …

The Progressive era gave birth to the “separate but equal” doctrine that emerged from the Supreme Court’s notorious 1896 decision in Plessy v. Ferguson, a case that symbolized Jim Crow racism. Progressives were also people who attacked free-market economics. Along with muckraking journalists they attacked capitalistic barons. They were advocates of what might be called “scientific racism” that drew from anthropology, biology, psychology, sociology, eugenics and medical science. …

Legal scholar Richard Epstein concludes that progressivism sought to grant the state vast new authority to manage all walks of American life while at the same time weakening traditional checks on government power, including private property rights and liberty of contract, two principles that progressives hold in contempt. Epstein notes, “The sad but simple truth is that the Jim Crow resegregation of America depended on a conception of constitutional law that gave property rights short shrift, and showed broad deference to state action under the police power.”

It is clear that today’s progressives have the same constitutional contempt as their predecessors. I hope they do not share the racial vision. Black voters ought to demand, at a minimum, that progressives disavow their ugly racist past.

They should re-label themselves to something other than progressives, maybe compassionate totalitarians. 

The end of national sovereignty 5

The EU – the European Union – is not a democracy. It has a parliament, and people are elected to it by the citizens of the member states, but it has no real power of decision. Members of the European Parliament talk there. Nobody listens. Not even their fellow MEPs.

Unelected bureaucrats decide what the 503 million people of Europe may do, eat, use, buy, sell, and say, and not do, eat, use, buy, sell, and say. In finicky detail. (See for example here and here.)

The bureaucrats compose the Commission. The president of the Commission is appointed by the Council and he appoints the other 27 members.

The Council is composed of the heads of the governments of the member states and the President of the Commission whom they have appointed.

The EU Commission – 28 unelected officials – exercises dictatorial power, and has dictated that Europe shall be terminated; and that slowly – over about three more generations – the continent will become part of the Ummah, the world unity of Muslims, governed by Sharia, Islam’s legal system inseparable from the religion. To this end, the EU is importing millions of Muslims (often under the courtesy name of “refugees”), who will have large families as multiple wives each bear many children.

The Commission’s writ does not officially run in Western countries outside the EU; but this momentous decision, a turning point in the history of mankind, is apparently approved of and being emulated by the political leadership of most Western states, notably Canada, Australia, and even the United States of America.

Or is there a conspiracy among all Western leaders to Islamize their world?

The Big Question is WHY? 

John Griffing writes at American Thinker:

Europe is on fire, in a social and financial crisis of its leaders’ own making. Its public places are now spectacles of the obscene, and its women are sexual objects for a predatory race of invaders. Its social systems are stretched to the breaking point by belligerent “refugees” who are devouring their host countries at will, while Europe’s leaders defend the invaders and blame their own citizens.

Western civilization is under attack, and rational citizens are at a loss to understand why their leaders are allowing the destruction of their societies.

Much has been written about the outrageous acts that have been committed by Muslim migrants, so we need not repeat them here. We can simply agree that the situation in Europe is disastrous, and it’s getting worse. And America is not far behind.

Western leaders are aiding and abetting this insanity with a consistency and single-mindedness of purpose that can only be explained in one way: they must think they have something to gain from the chaos created by this crisis.

What other conclusion can be drawn from the brazen ascendancy of Islam in the western world, and the deafening silence that permits its success?  Clearly, Western leaders think they can use Islam for their own ends, to consolidate their own power.

Whether their motivations are globalist, nationalist, pro-Islam, or merely megalomaniacal, they all seem to hold one belief in common: the belief that they can control Muslim migration to create the chaos necessary to justify their predetermined solutions. …

But they are dangerously underestimating those they presume to use as pawns. …

Islam is now controlling most of Europe, either actively, or passively, due to the absence of any response from local governing authorities – a curious void of law and order. …

Unless Europeans and Americans rise up now to reverse this trend, one of two things will occur. Either those in power will succeed in using this crisis to advance their aims and fundamentally transform their societies, or, more likely, Islam will become dominant in the West past the point of no return.

If those two occurrences are distinguishable from each other.

“The Moors” have come home. The Muslim horde hastily imported into Europe over the cries and screams of voters are living up to the archetypes people in the West have come to fear, especially when cartoons result in lynch-mobs, and when a woman clothed according to western custom is mercilessly raped by “migrants”. …

A majority of Muslims living in Britain say they want full Sharia law, a separate Muslim police force, and death for anyone who speaks against Mohammed.  The same survey revealed a majority percentage also favor terrorist attacks against Britain and the United States.  51 percent of American Muslims also say they want Shariah and the US government to become Islamic.

The Netherlands openly advocates placing Shariah – the desert law which commands death for adulterers, death for gambling, death for leaving the faith (or having no faith), and death for homosexuals – on the ballot.

German courts are already enforcing Shariah when requested, and the impetus for this golden nugget originated in Nuremburg.

France has over 751 “no-go zones”, i.e. areas of land ruled by Islamic law and totally unrecognizable as French.

And where French law is not enforced, the police being afraid to enter them.

This was verified again after the recent French attacks.

The British already have actual Shariah courts in operation all over the United Kingdom.  These “courts” are chaired by a man who thinks amputation for petty crimes is a great idea, something he wants to “offer British society”.

Americans and Europeans need to stop acting surprised when Muslims behave like Muslims.  They are acting according to what the Qur’an says to do. It’s there in plain sight for anyone to read. And its ultimate aim is conquest and complete domination of any other culture but Islam. …

Not only is history repeating, but it is repeating on a crash timetable, and with the perverse backing of the host countries destined to be remade in the image of Islamic hegemony.

Why would any true German, Frenchman or Briton cooperate in their own organized destruction if there were not some goal or elusive purpose to be accomplished by the ever less accountable and more distant governments that make such decisions?

It would only be logical to deduce that French leaders, German leaders and British leaders have determined that there is an acceptable cost to property and lives if the chaos resulting from the indiscriminate welcoming of new migrant hoards can be directed towards an unspoken goal.  This is not out of left field.  Angela Merkel calling her own people “neo-Nazis” and turning water cannons on her own citizens is indicative.

Amazingly, this mindset is evident in every recent action to open the borders of Europe and America to their new visitors.

Controlled chaos is the desired result.

We underestimate the depravity of Western leaders if we think the lives of American and European citizens mean anything more to them than plot points in a narrative, one leading inevitably to the end of national sovereignty.

There’s chaos all right, but where’s the control?

What is that “goal or elusive purpose to be accomplished by the ever less accountable governments”? 

Is it something beyond the destruction of their own nations? Of their continent? Of Western civilization?

Is it some earthly paradise that can only arise out of submission to Islam and Sharia law?

A vision that they alone – the political deciders and dictators who will  not explain their plan – can see?

Is that hellish path the only way to it?

If so, it would be good to be told what it is, and how it will come about, and when.

Or else there is no answer at all to WHY.   

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