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Monday, November 30, 2009

Son of Stimulus Set to Attack American Economy

By On November 30, 2009
Even as the health care debate continues to rage, Democrats have their hearts set on countering their disastrous ratings and the loss of the independent voter by rolling out a job creation package, or Son of Stimulus Plan. There are no clear plans yet, but the ones floating around as preliminary ideas are bad enough on their own. With price tags going as high as 1.2 trillion dollars and various gimmicks being trotted out to hide their cost and avoid blame for inflating the already massive deficit further, the Son of Stimulus is likely to be as big a disaster as its parent.

Take House Democratic leader Steny Hoyer's plan to pay for a job creation plan with a financial transactions tax. Not only would this plan help push investors out of the US stock market, at a time when the market is already in bad shape, but it would weigh down the stock market thereby preventing companies from expanding and going public. Which naturally would crush the very same job creation congressional Democrats claim to want.

After spending taxpayer money to bailout Wall Street, and now that the Dow Jones has hardly passed the 10,000 mark, congress now wants to abort the recovery by taxing Wall Street for their job creating programs. Which will help push the Dow Jones back down and perhaps allow for a second bailout of Wall Street. Which will naturally outrage taxpayers even further, leading to another attempt to tax Wall Street. That is the kind of economy lunacy that governs the thinking of Washington D.C., mixing the worst of socialism and corporate welfare into one indigestible stew.

Hoyer is promising that the bill would include extended unemployment benefits, which is fitting enough since the bill itself would help perpetuate unemployment by killing job growth. That same paradox lies behind virtually all of the Democratic job creation plans, which is that they involve taking money out of the economy, lowering the value of the dollar further or bulking up the national debt- conditions which would in turn backfire on the very people they're claiming to want to help.

Meanwhile New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, the economic court jester of the Democratic party, is agitating for a jobs creation plan that does not offer any tax cuts but instead provides aids to local governments to cover their gaps combined with a low paying public works program. Krugman, who favors enlarging the deficit, doesn't even bother trying to explain how this will be paid for. A variation on Krugman's reboot of the WPA is a work sharing proposal that would essentially also mean having the government directly subsidize jobs. The problem with both approaches is that they don't actually involve real job creation, but a dressed up form of public assistance, no fundamentally different than the able bodied welfare recipients who are expected to do some work in exchange for being on the dole.

But it all comes down to government welfare programs, rather than job creation. Job creation involves creating actual private sector jobs, in contrast to the government maintaining artificial jobs which will vanish the moment the funding for them does. Furthermore since the money to fund such job welfare programs will itself help damage the economy further, this is yet another type of job creation plan that will undermine the ability to create genuine jobs. And additionally work sharing drags us closer to socialism, with the government deciding which jobs to subsidize, thus propping up some businesses at the expense of others.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi meanwhile has gone back to making the argument that the only way to cut the deficit, is by spending more money on job creation programs, never mind the fact that the last stimulus failed to create any actual jobs, but did succeed in bulking up the deficit. This time the plan can't fail. Pelosi is trying to win back the working class by talking up infrastructure projects, but considering that the last stimulus plan had its infrastructure projects gutted to, in the words of Obama's economic advisor Robert Reich, avoid giving jobs "to high skilled people who are already professionals or to white male construction workers". Instead the money was funneled into more social services spending, which helped lead to the He-Cession. This was in keeping with the ruthlessly partisan approach that characterizes everything the Obama administration does, and mandated that what few jobs there were, would go to Obama's own base. The result has helped lead the backlash among swing voters away from Obama and against the Stimulus Plan.

But Obama and his congressional cronies have no real answer, because their plans are all focused on using government spending as a tool, rather than realizing that government spending is the problem, not the solution. Since most of the job creation plans involve spending more money, the result would not be jobs created, so much as government subsidies and more social services spending that would place a band aid on unemployment, while helping perpetuate the economic conditions that cause unemployment. Tax cuts, damned for their association with the Bush Administration and for running counterintuitive to the socialist premise that government action is the solution, rather than government inaction, are hardly heard from.

There is some talk of a hiring tax credit, but it is not only widely opposed by congressional democrats who are allergic to any talk of tax cuts, but follows the rigid socialist pattern of attempting to tightly control business to get the results they want, rather than understanding that human economic behavior is not a Stalinist puppet show in which you can pull a string and create jobs. A hiring tax credit would certainly create more jobs than anything and everything that Obama has done until now, but that is faint praise at best. Mainly what a hiring tax would accomplish is to allow Obama to take credit for every business that chose to hire a worker and receive a hiring tax credit, regardless of whether or not the business hired a worker because of the credit, or because it needed to hire said worker anyway. A year from now Obama would be able to claim to have saved a million jobs, if the government hands out a million hiring tax credits to every pizzeria that decided it needed to hire an extra delivery boy on weekends.

And above it all, Obama's union backers who helped dictate his auto bailouts and health care plan are breathing down his neck. Union officials will be prominently in place at Obama's jobs summit, which is likely to be an amen chorus backing Son of Stimulus and shaping it into another giant boondoggle of pork and money used to save union featherbedding. But Congressional Democrats have failed to realize that another extension of unemployment benefits and a few hundred billion more lavished on state governments such as California which have created their own financial disasters by kowtowing to unions may make for some cheerful headlines, but will not improve the situation of those same Americans who have turned against them.

Nor will using various gimmicks to hide the cost of the spending by spreading it across different years or pretending to pay for it out of money saved from absolutely nothing, disguise the inevitable fact that Son of Stimulus, by the time it goes through both the House of Representatives and the Senate, will be another monstrous spending plan with nothing to show for it.

Furthermore Pelosi is wrong when she claims that Americans will willingly accept a higher deficit that they will have to pay off, in order to get a few WPA or workshared jobs. Many Americans who have jobs have turned against Obama and Congress because of their fiscal irresponsibility, rather than simply because they haven't gotten their share of the pie. Congress may be incapable of simple math, but millions of Americans who run their own businesses are well aware of the consequences of out of control spending as Democratic politicians act like they have an unlimited American Express card from the Bank of China.

For hacks like Pelosi the only possible reason for public dissatisfaction is because they haven't seen their share of the pork. But Pelosi can't see past her own pork-centered attitude to realize that Americans increasingly want fiscal responsibility from their government, at a time when they themselves have to tighten their belts. Instead what they see is a line of pigs slurping uncontrollably from the trough and on hearing of their anger, they wipe a little of the mud off their faces and offer them a slurp too.

Independent voters who are particularly hard to fit into the interest groups that Democrats are so good at rewarding, are the least likely to fall for Son of Stimulus, and the most likely to be further alienated by a Congress and Administration that shows itself to be completely incapable of changing its ways. It is not a question of pork, but of responsibility and accountability. Obama promised voters the most transparent administration ever, only to provide an administration of czars and a complex tangle clashing figures. The Democrats promised a congress focused on fixing the economy, yet everything they've done has only hurt the economy more. Obama and his spin artists have cynically tried to disguise that by claiming that their deficit spending actually averted a depression, an evidenceless claim, and by bandying about completely fraudulent numbers of jobs saved. What all this adds up to is blatant irresponsibility, the same kind of irresponsibility that the people now in charge in Washington D.C. worked hard to charge Bush and the Republican congress with, only to be found guilty of it themselves by the very people who helped elect them.

As it stands now any jobs creation plan is likely to once again cross the gap between conservative democrats from districts that want to see more fiscal responsibility from the government, up against left wing democrats backed by unions and the Congressional Black Caucus who want to see a Son of Stimulus plan that's even bigger and more wasteful than what came before it, with money directed into social spending, swelling the state and federal bureaucracies and of course subsidizing union jobs. And with Pelosi and Obama at the helm, after some token protests by Democrats from American working class districts, they will probably win.

Obama and Congress think that focusing on jobs is the key to raising their numbers, but while it might bring back some straying Democratic voters, it will not actually save them in the polls, nor will it actually create jobs. That is because the source of the problem cannot become the solution until it recognizes that it is the problem. Obama and Congress are the problem. And while Obama and Congress may be incapable of recognizing that they are the problem, more and more Americans are coming to just that conclusion.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Democracy vs the Muslim Bayonet

By On November 29, 2009
The media is filled with outrage today at the decision by Swiss voters to ban the construction of new minarets by the growing number of Muslims living in Switzerland. The vote which has been opposed by the Swiss government and both the Catholic and the Protestant churches once again demonstrates that populist democracy is the only real barrier to an Islamist takeover. But at the same time the reaction to it betrays a great deal of hypocrisy.

Going by the outrage at this ill treatment of Muslims, one might assume that Muslim countries are a haven of religious freedom. But in fact one of the codes of the Dhimmi prohibited building Synagogues and Churches taller in height than Mosques. This can be seen even in churches in Europe that were once located in Muslim ruled territories, such as the Church of Sveti Spas in Macedonia which was built mostly underground to avoid falling afoul of Muslim rules while still allowing for a high interior space. The same phenomenon can be seen in the many sunken floors of Jewish synagogues built in the Middle East.

It is ironic that all the Swiss did was pass a law that treats Muslims, much the same way that Muslims treat non-Muslims throughout the Middle East. Furthermore many of the Muslim refugees from Yugoslavia who have inflated Switzerland's cantons and want to fill the country with minarets and the vulture shrieks of radical Imams calling the faithful to prayer, have relatives back home who are busy burning every church they can find. Naturally the same human rights activists who are terribly worked up because the Muslims of Switzerland will have to make do with only four minarets, couldn't care less. Just as the same European elites who become agitated every time a Palestinian Arab is made to wait an extra 5 minutes at a border crossing to insure that he isn't wearing a bomb strapped to his chest, could hardly be less interested in the Muslim firebombings of churches belonging to the dwindling minority of Arab Christians in the area.

And while Muslims resort to the usual riots and terrorism when they fail to get their way on Jerusalem, not only are there no Synagogues or Churches in Mecca-- non-Muslims are not even allowed to enter Mecca. And of course the reason that Mecca, once one of the most religiously diverse cities in the Middle East has no non-Muslims, is because they were all massacred by Mohammed's followers. Muslim ethnic cleansing and persecution of religious minorities is the reason why the Middle East has so few non-Muslims. The one exception, the State of Israel, a democratic non-Arab and non-Muslim country in the middle of the Middle East, has faced repeated attempts at genocide for its entire history.

The human rights activists agitated over the Swiss ban on minarets might ask just how many new Churches and Synagogues have been built in the Middle East over the last 20 years. As opposed to how many new Mosques have gone up in Europe. While Europe's proportion of Muslims continues to rise, the proportion of Jews and Christians in Muslim countries continues to decline. If they were truly interested in protecting religious freedom, they would be at least as agitated over the treatment of non-Muslims in Muslim countries, including the deaths of thousands of guest workers in Dubai, the ghetto prepared for Jews in Yemen, the oppression of Christian Copts in Egypt or the second class status of Zoroastrians in Iran. But somehow religious freedom only seems to matter when it's the religious freedom of Muslims.

The question though is why should non-Muslim countries be expected to grant rights and privileges to Muslims, that Muslims are not willing to grant to non-Muslims? Why should France and Germany respect the Burka while Christian schoolgirls are whipped in Sudan for wearing to the knee skirts? Why should Christian and Jewish countries guarantee equal rights to Muslims, when Muslim countries treat their Christians and Jews as second class citizens? Why should Muslim guest workers in Germany have rights, when Asian guest workers in Dubai are treated like cattle? Why should Muslims be able to have mosques in Jerusalem and Rome, when no non-Muslim is even granted access to Mecca since Mohammed's original ethnic cleansing of the region? Why should Muslims in Switzerland be able to erect their minarets, while churches are being torched in Yugoslavia? And finally and above all else, if non-Muslims cannot live in peace and equality in Muslim countries-- then why should Muslims expect to live in peace and equality in Europe, Australia, North-America and Israel?

The short answer is that there isn't a single reason why. Noblesse oblige might prompt First World nations to offer equal rights to Muslims, but those rights would be eroded by rising Muslim demographics. Thanks to growing Muslim populations, Jews have once again become a persecuted minority in Europe. And native Europeans are quickly following them. The paradox of extending equal rights to those whose religion prevents them from accepting the liberal premise of human equality is that this attempt at equality will ultimately undermine and destroy any notion of equality for all.

Muslims have always rejected human equality as antithetical to the values and teachings of the Koran. And as a country draws closer to legalizing Sharia, the first casuality is human equality, whether it is equality between men and women, or between Muslims and infidels. And so former republics dedicated to freedom and equality die the death of a thousand accommodations, making concession after concession, silencing dissent and finally bowing their heads to the sharp knife of Islamic rule.

When London Mayor Boris Johnson calls on non-Muslims to fast during Ramadan in order to better understand Muslims, have Muslims or anyone else been called on to fast during Yom Kippur or Lent in order to better understand Catholics or Jews? But Johnson has gone from a rational examination of the Koran and Islam in 2006, when he stated;

To any non-Muslim reader of the Koran, Islamophobia — fear of Islam — seems a natural reaction, and, indeed, exactly what that text is intended to provoke. Judged purely on its scripture — to say nothing of what is preached in the mosques — it is the most viciously sectarian of all religions in its heartlessness towards unbelievers. As the killer of Theo Van Gogh told his victim’s mother this week in a Dutch courtroom, he could not care for her, could not sympathise, because she was not a Muslim.

... to singing the praises of Islam. But that has become the price of political power in the First World, with the first order of business being to bow your head to Mecca, to pretend that the Koran is not a genocidal text, and that Islamic terrorism is some sort of baffling accident that has absolutely nothing to do with Islam, aside from the coincidental similarity of the names.

This has nothing to do with morals, and everything to do with politics, with Saudi money and Muslim immigrants who create their own sullen angry ghettos, reacting to any real or imagined slight with ugly violence. There is no love for Islam, outside of the ivory towers of a few universities and civic buildings, but there is a great deal of fear.

And thus time and time again, it is the people who can be counted on to defy Islamic supremacism. While the politicians kneel facing Mecca, there are still a great many citizens who understand the value of civilization and sense how the rising power of Islam threatens their values and their families. Switzerland, where democracy is not just a word used by leftist politicians to shout down their opponents, as it tends to be throughout the First World, has repeatedly thwarted the integrationist aims of its political leaders at the ballot box.

And so Swiss voters spoke and the minarets tottered. Of course the political elites are already rushing to undo the damage. The Swiss government put out a press release in Arabic, even though tellingly most of its Muslim residents don't even read Arabic. There is talk of Supreme Court action, and if not then the European Court of Human Rights may intervene. Either way this temporary outbreak of democracy is to be squelched in the name of what will be euphemistically described as human rights, but in reality is Islamic power.

When Turkey's Islamist Prime Minister Tayip Erdogan proclaims that, "the mosques are our barracks, the domes our helmets, the minarets our bayonets and the (Muslim) faithful our soldiers", a culture war is being telegraphed that only the blind can ignore. Turkey's own planned entry into the EU parallels the bayonets and soldiers spreading across Europe. Swiss voters decided that they did not want any more Muslim bayonets in their country, thank you very much. If an honest referendum were held on the subject in just about any First World country, the results would be much the same. And every politician in office who bows his head to Mecca and praises Islam to the heavens knows it too.

And if Muslims feel aggrieved, then maybe it is time we had a rational conversation about rights and responsibilities. And perhaps when there are churches and synagogues in Mecca, then there can be minarets in Switzerland. Perhaps when synagogues in Europe do not need to build tall walls around themselves and churches do not need guards against arsonists-- then no one will protect rising Islamic demographics. For the moment though Muslims demand at the point of a bayonet, what they are not willing to grant to others. And in the fact of such unrelieved dogmatic hostility and intolerance, any talk of equality transforms democracy into nothing more than a suicide pact.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Taxed for Living

By On November 28, 2009
Forget taxes on income or consumption, the ultimate in regressive taxation is a tax simply for living. ObamaCare's mandatory health insurance or fine helps pioneer the notion that people should be taxed just for being alive. In his interview with George Stephanopoulos, Obama called his health care tax a fine. Which would then mean that the United States government is now fining people for living.

Democratic politicians from Obama on down have used the trite metaphor of a driver's license. But a driver's license is based on a choice. You can choose to buy a car or not. You can't however choose to be alive, or rather you can but the only alternative is death. That essentially makes ObamaCare a tax or a fine just for living. Which can't help but seem like a gateway arch to euthanasia, expressing a value system that sees human life itself as an unwanted nuisance at best and an offense at worst.

The stated rationale that people have to be fined ahead of time for the costs that their illness might impose on the government is not only unconstitutional, but a dangerous slippery slope. If we are going to tax people for their potential illnesses, why not tax parents of newborns for the potential expenses that their children will run up. This notion has already been percolating among some global warming agitators, which means that it will make it to congress sooner or later. Furthermore under the same rationale used for mandatory health insurance, women might be given a choice between using birth control or paying a potential child tax. If you think that's far-fetched, you haven't listened to the strident rhetoric of environmentalists pushing Zero Population Growth programs.

That is only one of a thousand possible examples where the slippery slope of fining people for being alive and a potential expense for the government can take us. Once we assume that the government can fine or tax people just for being alive or a potential liability, by the same logic it becomes possible to tax the elderly who have a higher probability of needing medical services. Similarly anyone above the government recommended weight can be taxed or fined based on the potential health problems they might cause. Such an approach would fall into line with the philosophy of Obama Regulatory Czar Cass Sunstein's book, Nudge.

Essentially it would create on the one hand a whole new range of sin taxes targeting anything the government's social monkeyers disapprove of, and on the other tax people for potential expenses they might incur, fleecing the sheep two ways for the benefit of an ever-expanding government bureaucracy constantly running short of new revenue sources. Essentially the US would turn into the EU with a government boot in everyone's face, forever.

Democrats often go on about Republicans and regressive taxation, but in fact Democrats routinely push regressive taxation because their core non-minority base is upper middle class to upper class, including the two richest men in America-- and because regressive taxation fosters dependency. Regressive taxation squeezes out the middle class in favor of a dependent lower class and an independent upper class, which under a socialist regime consists of people who are either holding down top government positions or non-profit or rent seeking businesses dependent on the government.

Cap and Trade is set to to do just that by not only creating a whopping new tax, but insuring that it filters down through added expenses piled on top of businesses that will hit the poorest the hardest. The entire body of government regulations have hit small businesses the hardest, because they have less resources to cope with them. And when small businesses go out of business, their employees who are usually working class go down with them. The result has hurt the working class and made college the path to the middle and upper class, which naturally puts generation after generations' minds into the hands of the same left wing academics who helped create the entire situation in the first place.

But Cap and Trade goes beyond the maze of existing regulations to turn taxation itself into a tradeable commodity, imposing a tax to correct a fictional problem and then turning that tax into a commodity in an eerie parallel of the same kind of government tampering that created the sub-prime mortgage calamity. Since taxes inherently take money out of the economy, trading on a diminishing quantity is of course the surest way to a crash. And the consequence of an economic crash in America is that it becomes an opportunity for an even more extensive government takeover of the economy. Each cycle of diminishing returns created by government regulations gives rise to the next wave of government regulations, followed by limited deregulation on behalf of the well connected, followed by another crash.

And what the full combination of these measures accomplishes is to tax every single American for just being alive, for going to work and for doing their daily routines. By turning human activity into an offense, the Carbon Footprint taxes everyone alive for doing as little as breathing. The sheer horror of this may be lost on many, but we are essentially approaching an oxygen tax. We have passed the point in which government taxes labor, to the point in which government taxes life itself. And the only escape is death.

The underlying political shift involves the transition from viewing human activity as beneficial to the country and subject only to as much taxation as is necessary for the government to fund its projects , to viewing people and everything they do as a liability subject to punitive taxation. In the Obama Administration, behind all the fluff and the slogans, the worldview that sees humans as a problem for government is now the dominant theme and with that the transition of government from servant to master to tyrant is complete. Government that begins as a servant grasps the opportunity when seeing the incompetence and fearfulness of the people in the face of a crisis to become their master. And when the master grows weary of having to care for the people, he becomes their tyrant.

There is now no shortage of aspiring philosopher-kings in Washington D.C. and Brussels penning their manuscripts and explaining in finely polished language what the people must be made to do for their own good. And as it turns out the people are a horde of ignorant who eat too much, insist on owning their own cars and clinging to the things that the kings of the bureaucracy have decided they should no longer cling to. As the nobility of old once looked down on peasants, our new lords and masters of the filing cabinet and the license to breathe look down on the people of a dozen once free republics and hammer out the details of their final enslavement under such grand words, as multilateralism, environmental responsibility and a new international age of cooperation. The words may change, the details may seem petty but the grand conclusion is the same as for that of all tyrannies, the rise of strong central governing bodies no longer subject to the will of the people.

Today the dogma of environmental responsibility is being exploited for power and profit by people who couldn't care less about how many redwoods are chopped down to create new additions for their mansions, just as their thoroughly racist predecessors jumped on the civil rights bandwagon in the name of federalism. It's not the issue, but what exploiting that issue can do for their own power and profit. And so now people who fly in specialists when they catch a cold are suddenly determined to pass national health care, even though they couldn't care less if everyone between Iowa and Nevada died tomorrow, but for power and profit.

And for every new government program. For every incremental addition to the teetering mansion of big government with its alternately dusty and packed rooms, its hundred pound bills and its hundred ton budgets, for laws and statues that no one remembers but will never be repealed, the people must pay the price. Until the people can no longer pay the price, and then when the people can no longer pay the cost of the government weighing down on their backs, it will cease to be merely their master and become their tyrant. And when the people can no longer be taxed only for the work they do, then they will be taxed just for living on this earth. For the earth no longer belongs to man and the air no longer belongs to those who breathe it. Now they all belong to government alone.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Friday Afternoon Roundup - An Unprecedented Mountain of Debt

By On November 27, 2009

Since Obama is rather attached to describing everything he does as "unprecedented", "I have achieved an unprecedented level of transparency", "I played an unprecedented amount of golf this year" and "I just wasted an unprecedented amount of money"... in honor of the Liar in Chief, we can make "unprecedented" the word of the day.

First up is Obama's unprecedented deficit. The current real cost of ObamaCare is up to 2.5 Trillion dollars and rising.

The Senate Republicans' chart demonstrates that the total for all of these costs -- based on CBO projections for the bill's true first 10 years -- is $2.5 trillion. And costs would only skyrocket from there, as the chart's trajectory suggests. In the 5 years to follow (2024-28), spending on "expansions in insurance coverage" alone would be $1.7 trillion, making the bill's total costs in its real first 15 years well over $4 trillion -- based on CBO projections.

A trillion here, a trillion there, and pretty soon you're looking at real money.

Just by way of comparison, the cost of ObamaCare is more than the entire US national debt during the Reagan Administration, which Democrats repeatedly criticized for being wasteful and running up the national debt.

That's right, one bill by Obama and the Democratic congress alone outweighs all of Ronald Reagan's national debt. Under wasteful ole Ron, the national debt was below 50 percent of the Gross Domestic Product. Under Obama we're now set to have the national debt pass 100 percent of the GDP, at which point we've pretty much sold America to the People's Republic of China.

From Clinton to Bush, the National Debt jumped by 12 percent of the GDP. Under Obama is jumped by 20 percent in only one year, and is set to make that 30 percent pretty soon.

Unprecedented? You betcha.

Oh but there's some good news, because the crunch isn't just hitting us, it's hitting Obama's buddies too, with Dubai in big trouble.
Just a year after the global downturn derailed Dubai's explosive growth, the city is now so swamped in debt that it's asking for a six-month reprieve on paying its bills — causing a drop on world markets Thursday and raising questions about Dubai's reputation as a magnet for international investment.

The fallout came swiftly and was felt globally after Wednesday statement that Dubai's main development engine, Dubai World, would ask creditors for a "standstill" on paying back its $60 billion debt until at least May. The company's real estate arm, Nakheel — whose projects include the palm-shaped island in the Gulf — shoulders the bulk of money due to banks, investment houses and outside development contractors.

Now keep in mind that Dubai World is run by the Dubai government which is in turn run by the family of the region's biggest headchopping family, which in this case is Sheikh Mohammed.

Dubai's prosperity was built on slave labor imported from abroad and by convincing stupid Westerns that Dubai was a happening place by hiring foreign architects to create insane skyscrapers and customized islands. Now Dubai World is bleeding badly and the Dhimmis who rushed to sink their money into a brutal oil rich totalitarian dictatorship are thinking twice, not because of morals or ethics, but because of finances.

And here's what helped break the camel's back

The straw that broke the Dubai camel's back is a $3.5 billion sukuk bond. It had been due to be repaid on December 14. It won't be.

Sukuk is of course Sharia finance. A lot of Western banks jumped on the Sharia finance bandwagon, only to get burned by Dubai.

Investors also face legal risk. If investors seek redress under English law, any ruling may be unenforceable as it is likely to be subject to review by the Dubai courts -- who may take a different view. The Dubai courts will never have dealt with a restructuring on this scale, and Dubai law may not allow for creditors to claim government assets. This may also test the Sukuk, or Islamic bond, structure, under which the investors are effectively the owners of the underlying assets, but may find it difficult to enforce their rights.

Dubai has spent the last few years seeking to build a reputation as a modern, international financial center. Much of that work has been undone by Wednesday's shock announcement. The need now is to start to repair the damage: and that means fair, transparent and equal treatment of all creditors.

That of course is delusional, considering that fair and transparent is not the way things are done in Dubai and the Muslim world. The irony here is that Islamic finance is not fundamentally different than what Madoff was doing, and Dubai is a great example of an attempt to turn worthless desert into desirable real estate through hype and promotion.

Meanwhile Dubai is still raising money through Sukuks vowing that it has come out strong from the financial crisis. Uh huh.

Citing Al Mal Capital fund manager, the Gulf News said "the market expects Dubai to raise another USD 5 billion soon which will take care of some of Dubai's debt and lift the confidence of the investors".

Once again another can't fail plan.

But investors worrying about transparency, need to remember that this is how debt collection works in the UAE.

A video tape smuggled out of the United Arab Emirates shows a member of the country's royal family mercilessly torturing a man with whips, electric cattle prods and wooden planks with protruding nails.

A man in a UAE police uniform is seen on the tape tying the victim's arms and legs, and later holding him down as the Sheikh pours salt on the man's wounds and then drives over him with his Mercedes SUV.

In a statement to ABC News, the UAE Ministry of the Interior said it had reviewed the tape and acknowledged the involvement of Sheikh Issa bin Zayed al Nahyan, brother of the country's crown prince, Sheikh Mohammed.

"The incidents depicted in the video tapes were not part of a pattern of behavior," the Interior Ministry's statement declared.

The Minister of the Interior is also one of Sheikh Issa's brother.

The government statement said its review found "all rules, policies and procedures were followed correctly by the Police Department."

Anyone investing in this oil dungeon of a hellhole that is Dubai while signing on to Sharia finance deserves exactly what they get.

Meanwhile back to our own mad Sheikh Hussein Obama, Michael Goldfarb at the Weekly Standard points out that it's now better to have destroyed the WTC than given a terrorist a fat lip

They could've executed him in the desert and left him in a shallow grave for all I care, but the SEALs are professionals, and so they brought the man behind the 2004 murder of four American contractors in Fallujah to the Green Zone, where one SEAL told investigators that he "had showered after the mission, gone to the kitchen and then decided to look in on the detainee."

Maybe there's a whole lot more to this story than is currently being reported, but it'd have to be pretty terrible stuff to convince me that three Navy SEALs who successfully captured a high-value target now deserve to be court martialed for their service. A fat lip? That's enough to get you rough military justice from the Obama administration, but blow up the World Trade Center and you get all the due process rights of the civilian criminal justice system. Sounds fair, right?

And back to the Gulf, Phyllis Chesler asks reasonably enough, Why is America Still Allied with Saudi Arabia?

The Saudi mutawas (“morality police”) are terrifying. Like vultures, they swoop down on their vulnerable prey, especially women, and then send them straight to Hell. The “long beards” curse and beat their female prisoner, totally terrify her; then, they throw her into a dark, medieval dungeon, (assume the worst here). They remove her only in order to gang-rape and torture her—all presumably in the name of Islam. Her crime? In one instance, although the woman was a foreign national, she dared to take a taxi downtown without a male escort.

Remind me: Why are we still allies with Saudi Arabia? Why did President Obama bow to the King who presides over such Hell? Can we find no oil elsewhere, no other sources of energy? Do Americans really understand what goes on in Saudi Arabia? Have we forgotten that the Saudis have single-handedly exported Wahhabi fundamentalism and propaganda that has poisoned both westerners and those in the east—and have funded western universities and media as well? Does anyone remember that 15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia? Or that Osama bin Laden is a Saudi? Do we not understand that the Kingdom has funded bin Laden? And that they have funded many influential Islamic “charities” in North America?


Al Rabaa tells the story of Karin (presumably a pseudonym), a German woman who took a taxi downtown and got arrested for doing so. Thrown into a dungeon, beaten, raped, traumatized, no one knew where she was. Finally, a married Saudi man (alas, one to whom she was already attracted), moved heaven and earth to rescue her. He got her released after having her German husband deported and after marrying her without Karin even being present. A well connected Saudi man can rescue his wife from prison. Satam moved Karin into the home he shared with his first wife Fatima and their children. Satam soon lost interest in Karin and spent long hours away from home. But Karin was already pregnant. Here’s how Fatima handled the situation.

First, around midnight, while Karin was sleeping, Fatima put on loud Arabic music, came into Karin’s room and “slammed a massive stick down onto my stomach…I screamed for help. ‘No one is going to hear you, Gahba (whore)!’” The first wife kept swinging the stick at her. Karin fled. Finally, Satam got Karin her own apartment. Whereupon, Fatima started calling her to “harass and terrorize me…she spread rumors that I had a boyfriend who secretly came to visit me.” In fact, Fatima enlisted relatives in an elaborate scheme to entrap Karin and to report all such concocted suspicious doings to Satam.

But here is the most evil thing that Fatima did. Because Mimi, their housemaid, was helpful to Karin, Fatima reported Mimi to the mutawa for “fornication.” The fact that this was totally untrue made no difference. Once Mimi was arrested, Prince Salman signed her death warrant. Satam could do nothing to reverse this decree. Thus, the following Friday, after prayers, the appropriate verses from the Qu’ran having been read, Mimi was stoned to death. The two Indian men she was accused of “fornicating” with (shopkeepers, where Mimi was shopping for Karin) each received one hundred lashes.

The graphic description of Mimi’s stoning is too awful for me to repeat.

I am waiting for Secretary of State Clinton and President Obama to spell out precisely what American policy should be vis a vis Saudi Arabia given their barbaric record on human rights and their major role in funding and exporting Islamic Jihad globally.

I recommend a big tall fence to keep the Saudis in and everyone else out. If the Saudis want anything, they can pay for it in oil. Which they'll have to learn to pump themselves.

But oil money rules all. Case in point, after the Lockerbie Bombing release the UK's elite are still visibly partying with Kaddafi and his spawn.

Lord Mandelson, was there, and also Lord Rothschild's country neighbour, Cherie Blair. Neither of them picked up a gun. Various young friends of Nat with double-barrelled or European princely names were shooting. But the keenest shot was Saif Al-Islam Gaddafi, son of the Libyan dictator, and the man who escorted the Lockerbie bomber, Al Megrahi, home to a hero's welcome in Libya in August.

Now that Libya has made its strange bargain with the West, Saif has taken up our traditional upper-class sport with delight. Near Tripoli, he has laid down 40,000 partridges.

How wonderful that Khaddafi's kids enjoy the sport of shooting birds in the UK. Pity Dick Cheney wasn't invited along to show off his hunting skills. I suspect he could have bagged something bigger than a partridge.

And more good news from the EU, its new Foreign Secretary will be a Soviet agent.

Baroness Ashton of Upholland’s past came back to haunt her yesterday when the European Union’s new foreign affairs chief was forced to deny taking funds from the Soviet Union during her days as treasurer for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.

Lady Ashton, a surprise choice for her post, was challenged to deny that she had contact with Russian sources while she was in charge of its accounts at the height of the Cold War.

The Times has learnt that concerns about her CND involvement are felt across countries from the former Iron Curtain now in the EU and that MEPs plan to question her about it when she appears before them for the hearing to confirm her in her post.

But don't worry, finally no mercy will be shown to humans, the WHO promises.

Margaret Chan, of the World Health Organisation, warned that “no mercy” would be shown for humans’ mistakes over climate change.

And back to Sheikh Hussein Obama, Israpundit has Ken Timmerman's interview which charges that Obama is obstructing the progress of Iranian pro-democracy groups
In the interview, Rahman Haj Ahmadi accuses the Obama administration of thwarting negotiations among Iranian pro-democracy groups that were on the verge of creating a united opposition front that could have led to the collapse of the Islamic regime during this summer’s post-election turmoil.

Those negotiations were on the verge of success, Haj Ahmadi told me – until the Obama administration inexplicably placed his group on the terrorism list on Feb. 4, 2009. The U.S. action “made the other groups afraid to work with us, for fear of U.S. government reprisals.”

You will also find in the story a link to some of my earlier reporting from the PJAK training camps in northern Iraq. Far from being a terrorist group, PJAK is dedicated to the overthrow of the Islamic Republic regime in Iran and its replacement by a pro-Western, secular, united Iran that recognizes the rights of all its citizens.

At the Copenhagen Post, a study shows that Muslim immigrants are importing anti-semitic attitudes into Europe. Shocker.

Of course the same thing is happening in the US as well, and not just with Muslims either.

Meanwhile Mikey Weinstein is back. Back in the day I caught some flack for taking Mikey Weinstein apart and demonstrating that he was actually a left wing activist, trying to tout his time in the Reagan Administration and supposed defense of Jews in the military to mainstream his credentials. In fact Weinstein is part of a left wing agenda, and now part of a pro-Muslim agenda too, piggybacking on the Fort Hood shootings to try and give Nidal Hassan some help with his alibi.

Weinstein, founder and president of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, says that Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan's alleged killing of 13 soldiers at Fort Hood is inexcusable and reprehensible. But he believes that it's important to investigate reports of harassment that Hasan said he faced as a Muslim in the military, which might have contributed to his mental state.

"There's enough out there" to look into, said Weinstein. "I'm not excusing him, but did it affect him, or was he just a maniac to begin with?"

Weinstein cited media reports quoting Hasan's family, saying that someone had put a diaper in his car and told him, "That's your headdress," and that a camel was drawn on his car with the words, "Camel jockey, get out!"

Weinstein also provided a letter, with the name withheld, from a Muslim woman and wife of a member of the military, in which she described how her best friend on the base, immediately after the shooting, told her that "Muslims shouldn't even be allowed in the U.S. Army," and that she repeatedly heard things like, "Go back to your country" and "F---ing Muslims," as she shopped at the base commissary.

Weinstein, who spent 10 years in the Air Force as a military attorney, or JAG, said that he also doesn't believe that Hasan's colleagues hesitated to report his changes in behavior because of political correctness. In fact, he claimed, Hasan's superiors would have been sympathetic to hearing such charges because of their strong Christian beliefs.

Weinstein would like to see military leaders make an "unadulterated clarion call" that Americans shouldn't "paint all of Islam with a broad brush," as well as emphasize a "zero tolerance policy" of any religious harassment.

Any Jewish newspaper that runs Mikey Weinstein's op eds slash infomercials should know exactly what they're getting into. His organization is backed by non-Jewish left wing activists. It is not about religious freedom, but about promoting their agenda. It is not a Jewish organization, but another tentacle of the myriad of left wing organizations strangling America.

Meanwhile at Joshuapundit, my article Obama Goes Mao, on Obama's betrayal of Taiwain, was nominated for the watcher's council. Header cartoon comes courtesy of Jew With a View.

And with that we close this week's roundup. An unprecedented roundup.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Dead End Quest for Peace

By On November 25, 2009
Peace, peace. Everyone wants peace. Or so we would like to think. Chamberlain and a sizable portion of the English electorate were certain that Hitler wanted peace and all that was needed was for everyone to sit down around a table, make some compromises (at someone else's expense if possible) and everyone could go back to buying their biscuits, playing cricket and generally enjoying life. What did not occur to them was the possibility that Hitler did not want peace. What did not occur to them was that by constantly talking about peace, they were only bridging the gap to war with their own naivete and conspicuous weakness.

A year into Obama's first term dedicated to multilateralism and soft power, the world is more unstable than ever. Iran is openly pursuing nuclear weapons and regional domination. North Korea is firing on South Korean ships. The Chavez Marxist axis in Latin America has become more ambitious. Russia is amping up the rhetoric against the Ukraine and George again, and building up its arsenal. And even Obama's staunchest apologists and defenders cannot think of a single tangible thing that he has accomplished in all his visits to virtually every major country on the globe.

But that is because peace is a paradox. To have peace, you must be prepared for war. You may speak softly, but you must carry a big stick. And like happiness, the worst possible way to go about finding peace, is by going out and looking for it. Because to pursue peace is to deliver a signal of weakness that all but invites war. Peace is produced not through goodwill, those with whom goodwill is easy to achieve are not likely targets for war, but through deterrence. War is deterred the same way that crime is deterred, through vigilance and strength.

To let go of that strength and relax your vigilance brings not peace, but instability and eventually war. This understanding of human affairs is reflexively rejected by those who assume that "we" are the real problem. That "we" are the reason why there is war. "We" are the reason why the enemy does not trust us. "We" are what stands in the way peace, love and understanding with the whole world. And if the peace initiatives fail, clearly "we" are the ones to blame and must try harder to break through and reach an understanding. And if "we" are lucky, we may wake up from this form of madness before the tanks of the people we worked so hard to achieve peace with roll into Poland.

Because there is nothing quite so pathetic as the leaders of a free nation crawling before tyrants and thugs in search of peace, beating their own breasts and offering more and more concessions in trade for false promises and falser hope.

Consider Israel's outreach program of shipping their films to film festivals, which is ironic when you consider that the average Israeli film is just as Anti-Israeli, as the average American movie is Anti-American. Israeli consulates are still flogging The Band's Visit. The Band's Visit is one of those charming movies that every liberalized country makes sooner or later, and in the words of film critic Roger Ebert showcases a vision of; "Arabs and Israelis, that shows them both as only ordinary people with ordinary hopes, lives and disappointments. It has also shown us two souls with rare beauty".

The Band's Visit was meant to promote Jewish-Arab and Israeli-Egyptian co-existence. The movie however was banned in Egypt, where any actual talk of co-existence with Israel is virtually a criminal offense. Which made it all the more absurd for the movie to depict an Egyptian band visiting Israel, when Egyptian writers, musicians and filmmakers are effectively barred from visiting Israel at risk of being expelled from their respective guilds. The few who have like playwright Ali Salem who faced ostracism, expulsion from the Union of Egyptian Writers and police interrogations for merely visiting Israel, have paid a high price for promoting "normalization" with Israel.

That is the "peace" that exists between Israel and Egypt, 30 years after Camp Sinai. That is the only peace that will ever exist between Israel and Egypt, for the simple reason that it is a peace based on three wars in which Israel demonstrated that it would not allow itself to be conquered by Egypt. That is of course the only way to stop a war, to demonstrate that it will not succeed.

Had England and France backed down Nazi Germany in the Rhineland, there likely would have been no WW2. Had the United States put its soldiers where its boycott was in Asia, there would have been no Pearl Harbor. Had the Allied troops in Russia intervened more directly against the Bolsheviks, there would have been no Cold War. And the list goes on and on. There are far more modern cases where a raised fist would have stopped a devastating war, then when a handshake or a hug would have done the same thing. And some of the worst atrocities of the 20th century could have been prevented not by diplomacy, but by preventing the diplomacy itself which more often than not has accommodated conquest and genocide.

But naturally the people who made The Band's Visit and their cultural ilk have learned absolutely nothing from their actual experience in Egypt, or understood belatedly that their enemies are not interested in seeing them as fellow human beings with ordinary hopes, lives and disappointments. To paraphrase Cassius, they insist that the fault lies not in their enemies, but in themselves. Or in those intolerant people around them who insist that their country must be vigilant and strong, instead of a pushover for the sort of people who burn books when they cannot burn the writers themselves.

While peace is a wonderful thing, it is part of a balance. There cannot be peace all the time, because humans  are not peaceful creatures. As long as there is greed, hate and the will to power-- there will be war. And for as long as there is war, peace can only be obtained through a strong hand, rather than a bended knee. Peace requires war, as day requires night and summer requires winter. It is part of a natural balance that is sustained by the willingness to maintain that balance. To be willing to have peace when war is over, and to be willing to fight when peace can no longer avail.

To quest for peace is as pointless as questing for constant summer or constant day. To so is to ignore the natural balance of human affairs, and to bring on war anyway... only a war on increasingly unfavorable terms. For though men may cry peace, peace-- but there is no peace. Only preemptive surrender.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Why Global Warming is Not Science

By On November 24, 2009
The leaked email correspondence from the University of East Anglia, whose Climatic Research Unit is a key element in the push toward blaming humankind for the earth's natural global and cooling cycles, only graphically revealed what was known all along, that the supposedly scientifically proven conclusions of global warming science were a political fortress guarding a scientific house of cards built on manipulated data and an aggressive campaign of silencing critics and dissenters.

The Global Warming boom is big business for Green Companies and certain liberal politicians who have jumped on their bandwagon, such as Al Gore who went from a few million to a hundred million, and is likely to become a billionaire if cap and trade becomes a reality. But it is not science, not simply because it is wrong, but because it is a case of scientific conclusions being powered by political ideas, rather than the other way around.

Using the scientific method to form questions, test them and emerge with true answers is only valid to the extent that the process itself is pure. Global Warming promoters have repeatedly accused dissenting climate research scientists of being tainted by money from the oil industry. But if the science of researchers who took money from the oil industry is tainted science, then the science of those climate researchers who stand to financially benefit from green industries and those who view it as a political agenda first, must be at least as tainted.

The politicization of climate science has thrust it into the middle of a philosophical intellectual war between those who believe that humanity's impact on the planet has been a negative one and those who believe it is a positive one. The essential debate is an old one, but it has significant real world implications, the apex of which has been reached with the attempt to assign every human being living on earth his or her own Carbon Footprint, which essentially means charging everyone for their part in "warming up" the planet by driving to work, using toilet paper or breathing.

While Global Warming promoters may sell their message with fuzzy images of adorable children and polar bears, the underlying message behind their ideology is a fundamentally anti-human one, that views children as a form of biological pollution and humanity as a destroyer, ravaging not merely a few forests and streams, but destroying life on earth. From the standpoint of human intellectual history such a view is not a new one. Many religious groups had an equally negative view of humanity's presence on earth. But environmentalists have cloaked their New Age beliefs about humanity's ecological sinfulness in science. And that takes it beyond philosophy and into the realm of fraud.

There is a reason that we do not unveil research programs to study which religion is the true religion or which food tastes the best. Such ideas are inherently subjective and while scientific principles can be applied to their study, the results would only reflect human bias. Thus while some questions are unanswerable because they exceed humanity's grasp, others are unanswerable because they exceed human tolerances for bias. Global Warming has clearly become one of those subjects because it is not simply about the causes of the earth's warming and cooling cycles, but about the most fundamental human questions-- namely the purpose of man on the earth.

The passion which the Global Warming debate invokes is not motivated simply by greed, though indeed there are hundreds of billions of dollars at stake, particularly if every business in the world has to buy carbon credits in order to do the most elementary things, a cost that will of course be passed on down to every single man, woman and child living on earth. But greed can only motivate people to go so far, it takes a higher passion, a fanatical belief in the rightness of your cause to push it that much further. And while the Al Gores and the companies rushing to find a way to make money from being Green may do it out of greed, many climactic scientists have been committed to pushing Global Warming because they see it as the best vehicle for transforming the relationship between man and the planet.

Essentially imagine a group of sociologists who discover an idea that they believe will force everyone to end poverty. The idea would be a compelling one, and one that they might push regardless of whether or not it was actually true. When faced with contradictory data, they would suppress it. When faced with criticism, they would suppress it and shout it down. All in the name of a higher cause that took primacy over the actual science. And that is exactly what happened with Anthropogenic Global Warming and many climate researchers who with the fervor and guarded dedication of medieval priests have assembled and championed a gigantic fraud that has captured the imagination of so many people.

Before there was global warming, there was global cooling. A theory that seems its opposite in temperature, but in fact was its duplicate in intention. Both have their origin not in a scientific method, but in an ideological one. In an agenda that proclaims apocalypse through the land in the hopes of getting mankind to live simpler and poorer lives, more in harmony with what the planet's self-proclaimed guardians think would be better for it and for us.

What has been branded as East Anglia University's Climategate is only a small peek behind the stone walls of that elite global warming fraternity, at the anger and tension, the secrets and the lies of those perpetuating the fraud for the highest and lowest reasons. The lowest of course is the hundreds of billions of dollars at stake and the highest is a quest to reduce men from the lords of nature, to its humble servants.

The world may not be set to end in fire and ice, but far more certain that fiery or snowy apocalypse, is taxes. And politicians have seen the potential uses of global warming by manufacturing an imaginary crisis that they can solve without any chance of failure, as have many of their business friends who are eager to engage in rent seeking behavior, with the planet itself being out to rent. And when all these factors are combined together, the motivating force behind promoting the myth of Global Warming takes on a terrible force, born of greed, environmental ideology and cynical politics. And all these also demonstrate all too well why Global Warming is not science. It is politics, it is ideology and big business... but it is not science.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Where Are All the Jobs?

By On November 23, 2009
These days even Saturday Night Live is mocking Obama's failed job creation programs, mainly because the stench of Barry's economic failure has become a little too pungent to ignore. But then again Obama's programs were never designed to create jobs in the first place. As far back as 2008, I pointed out that Obama's proposal put the environment first and jobs a distance third if at all, emphasizing environment efficiency and infrastructure programs, neither of which had any serious likelihood of creating permanent jobs. And unsurprisingly they didn't.

Obama has inflated the bureaucracy at taxpayer expense, but he has not actually created jobs. Had he cut taxes by the same amount that he spent or just outright put the money to granting tax breaks to companies willing to move jobs to the United States, he could have boasted some actual job creation numbers. But Obama has no interest in creating jobs. As a former Community Organizer, read Poverty Pimp, Obama is not interested in promoting, what his mentor Jeremiah Wright called, "Middle Classedness". What he wanted and wants is to create government dependency.

Poverty Pimps do not get ahead by creating jobs, but by taking them away and replacing them with programs under their control. Community Organizers do not want people working, they want people with their hand stretched out to them. They spread misery and unemployment by shaking down businesses, blackmailing them if they will pay and driving them out of the neighborhood if they won't. Employed people have a degree of independence that unemployed people do not. And Poverty Pimps are not in the market for independence.

Instead of creating jobs, Obama created more misery. And that was always the plan. Now that he has sensed enough of the backlash to shift from talking about job creation, which his policies have failed miserably at, to talking about deficit reduction, which is a lot like Elliot Spitzer giving a lecture on ethics, but the endgame has never changed. Obama has created a monstrous deficit and every program on his agenda is meant to increase it further. For the White House which is pushing a trillion dollar government health insurance package to talk about deficit reduction is the sum of all hypocrisy.

Meanwhile Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman is busy arguing in his New York Times that the stimulus was too small and we need a much bigger stimulus plan to save the economy. But as the court jester of the Democratic economic apocalypse knows quite well, more government spending will not lead to job growth anywhere outside the civil service. The government can only create jobs under its own control and those jobs cost far more to create than private sector jobs and are built on the backs of an already overtaxed public. What government spending does is increasingly dry up the ability of companies and small businesses to create new jobs.

While the public increasingly blames the White House for the economic situation, the Obamas and Krugmans of the left blamed unregulated free enterprise. Their solution is to transform America into a centralized and planned economy, an approach that even most Communist countries have abandoned. But the liberal approach as always is to presume that it simply wasn't done right and that having all the bright boys in one room running the country would be an improvement over having businessmen run their own companies. That kind of thinking is what put a 31 year old campaign worker in charge of running the US Auto industry, with predictably disastrous results.

The Brightest Boys in the room policy goes back to the JFK Administration, where the brightest boys in the room helped give us such successes as the Bay of Pigs and Vietnam. In the Obama Administration though the boys part is sadly literal where the premium is not on experience or qualifications, neither of those being qualities that Obama himself possesses, but political allegiance. That same sense of liberal moral invulnerability promised that Obama would be able to handle Iraq and Afghanistan better than Bush, when in fact it is becoming increasingly clear that he doesn't even understand it. It also presumed that Obama could handle an economic crisis better than Bush, but in fact all Obama has done is played Poverty Pimp with hundreds of billions of dollars.

What Republicans must do in 2010 and 2012 is make clear that the chief problem with the economy is the government and the best solution is freedom. Government spending cannot create jobs, all it can do is inhibit the economic recovery that is a natural part of the economic cycles. Today more and more Americans are rejecting the idea of government dependency as an economic solution. Meanwhile when even Saturday Night Live can spell out the unpleasant economic truth that the only place that the government takeover of the economy is leading is to wildly useless spending and a sharecropper society run by our creditors from abroad-- it is clear that Obama's legislative victories carry the makings of his own political defeat.

But defeating Obama politically may well be a Pyrrhic victory if it leaves the edifice he is busy constructing intact. With falling numbers, Obama has not tried to do what Clinton did early on when he retreated from the unpopularity of his policies to try and seize the center, instead he has only tacked further left. Obama and those behind him are not satisfied with the slow revolution from within pushed by the likes of Clinton, instead they are gambling everything on the ability to transform America quickly, to replace free enterprise with socialism, and American independence with multilateral co-dependence.

And so even in the absence of jobs and growing public opposition, Obama and his people are pushing hard left, and gambling that the same factors which got them ahead in 2008, namely a tame media corps, voter fraud and the tattered remains of Obama's charisma will save them again in 2010 and 2012. And that means we can expect a growing escalation on both sides as Obama and the Democrats forge on regardless of public opinion working to create a state in which Republicans can only survive by being liberals. 

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Toward a Sustainable Immigration Policy

By On November 22, 2009
While the rising threat of terrorism, violence and honor killings produced by Muslim immigration tends to be in the news lately, the problems produced by immigration are not limited solely to Islam. The problem of Muslim immigration was created by a larger trend in First World immigration policies that favors bringing in cheap labor for short term commercial and political gain. Such immigration policies however are seriously damaging to the nations that utilize them and cannot be sustained. So what we must do is look for a sustainable immigration policy.

The first principle we need to begin with is that immigration should be in a nation's interest. While this seems self-evident, it is a principle that has gone by the wayside. For a clear example of what that leads to, consider Obama's move to allow people infected with AIDS to freely enter the United States. Clearly the entry of people with a deadly communicable disease for which there is no cure into the United States is not in our interest. It is actually quite dangerous to us and offers us no benefits whatsoever to outweigh the risks. There are numerous examples in our immigration policy are less graphic but ultimately just as destructive.

Beginning with the principle that immigration must be in the nation's interest, we now need a standard for measuring whether a particular form of immigration is in our interest or not.

The ideal form of immigration is one that benefits both the host country and the immigrants themselves. Immigration that benefits only the host country is slavery. Immigration that benefits only the immigrants is parasitism. The ideal is a mutual exchange of benefits between the immigrants and their new country. And we can begin by measuring that exchange through simple statistics by breaking down the impact of a particular immigration population in simple dollar terms.

This can be done simply by taking a particular population of immigrants and balancing their contributions in the form of taxes against the social expenditures they create through social services, crime, terrorism and public assistance. Through this method any immigrant population can be broken down into a dollar amount, which can then be contrasted and compared with other immigrant populations, as well as with the native population, to arrive at a chart that shows on the financial level which immigrants offer more benefits versus losses. Such figures should be assessed for first, second and if possible, third generation immigrants, to study the extent to which absorption improves those numbers or worsens them. Further in depth studies would look at regional differences which could allow for a greater fine tuning of immigrant acceptance from urban vs rural areas, to educated professionals vs industrial workers, for religious vs secular and so on and so forth, making it possible to produce questionnaires that would allow a country to reap the maximum possible benefit from immigrants, with the minimum possible loss.

Once this is done, it becomes possible to specifically assess the consequences for local and national economies of giving preference to one immigrant population over another. If we can break down the cost of say bringing in 2000 immigrants from Ireland vs 2000 immigrants from Belize, or 2000 immigrants from Venezuela vs 2000 immigrants from China-- we will be much closer to forming a rational immigration policy. And by presenting statistics in literal dollar amounts, a compelling interest based argument can be made for reforming immigration by making it sustainable.

The next step is to go beyond simple dollar amounts and to look at a nation's overall statistics, its total and per capita GDP, literacy rate, teenage pregnancies, domestic abuse, crime rates, and so on, and look to see which immigrant populations raise our statistics, and which lower them. The ideal form of immigration increases our statistics, or at least maintains them in place, but does not lower them. Again this needs to be studied across multiple generations to see the impact that absorption has on these numbers. An immigrant population that lowers these numbers not only in the first generation, but in the second and the third as well, is as unsustainable as a smokestack spewing poison into the air.   

Then there is the cultural question. Population migrations are nothing new in human history. Most countries are made up of a mix of peoples blending together over time through migrating populations. But while some such migrations are generally positive, others are generally negative. Whether a population migration is even feasible depends on how much room there is. 19th century America was able to absorb large numbers of immigrants in ways that 21st century America cannot because it lacks the same amount of open space. With the 20th century's suburbanization, that enabled the immigration and population movements of the 20th century reaching their limit in America, immigration creates crammed urban centers. And without "room to grow", immigration can destabilize and displace the existing native population. This creates an atmosphere charged with violence that easily lead to rioting and social conflict. A situation only worsened by groups with high birth rates moving to cities that are already bursting at the seams.

A sustainable immigration policy balances out immigration from population groups with high birth rates, by reducing their numbers in favor of immigration from population groups with lower birth rates-- in order to create a balance between them. Thus if immigrants from Country X have an average birth rate of 5 children and immigrants from Country Y have an average birth rate of 3 children, bringing in 2000 immigrants from Country and Country X is not parity. Instead it favors Country X in the second generation, when its immigrants might number 5000, while the immigrants from Country Y will only number 3000. The quotas for particular immigration populations would have to be set based on their projected numbers in the second generation, rather than the first generation.

This brings us to the question of immigration quality over quantity. Big business and many politicians who depend on immigrant votes want immigration quantity, which translates into cheap labor and voting blocs for their political machines. However on a national level what is needed is not immigration quantity, but immigration quality.

Cheap labor is extremely seductive, which is why even pro-business conservatives are reluctant to cut back  immigration to sustainable levels. Only when there is an economic downturn, do they jump on the immigration bandwagon. Businesses argue that they need cheap labor to maintain their domestic industries, and while this is a compelling argument for many, the fact of the matter is that cheap labor jobs wind up being more expensive than outsourcing, because immigration quantity carries a higher cost for the ordinary taxpayer, than the company simply packing up shop and taking a few native jobs abroad.

Virtually every major social problem in the First World today can be traced to the desire for cheap labor. From gang rapes in California to Islamism in London, from suicide bombings in Israel to drug dealing in Sydney, from riots in Paris to honor killings in Sweden, the common element in these social problems is that they are caused by people who were brought in because they were once considered cheap labor. But cheap labor quickly turns out not to be so cheap after all.

The same big companies that complain about high taxes and socialism, seem to have no understanding whatsoever that when you import hundreds of thousands of immigrants, legal or illegal, they will have to pay the price for them sooner or later. Capitalism may rely on cheap labor, but cheap labor inevitably leads to socialism, because importing a population incapable of caring for itself, will require the government to step in sooner or later.

While we believe in free enterprise, that means responsible free enterprise. A factory that pours toxic waste into a river is not behaving responsibly and is not serving the public good. Similarly an industry that uses cheap immigration to cut costs while dumping ten times those same costs on the taxpayer, a cost that they themselves will ultimately have to make up down the road, is not behaving responsibly. The allegiance of American business must be to America, just as English businesses must be to England and so on and so forth. A loyal business does not act against the national interest, but seeks to work within a sustainable immigration policy for the larger national benefit, a benefit that will also accrue to it as well.

Immigration quality focuses on maintaining sustainable immigration, while immigration quantity provides mass without sustainability. Few First World countries can really afford immigration quantity anymore, yet virtually all of them continue to emphasize quantity over quality, thereby creating a cycle in which low quality immigration produces social problems that require government intervention, thereby raising taxes and requiring more cheap labor to try and fill the birth rate shortfall created by trying to impose a growing government burden on a shrinking number of workers. Eventually the entire socialist Ponzi Scheme collapses into either major reforms or a dark age, but by then much of the damage has already been done.

While immigration remains an important resource, it must be the product of a rational policy. And a rational immigration policy can only be a sustainable immigration policy. Real immigration reform is not immigration permissiveness, but sustainability that balances immigration against domestic growth, seeks to maximize the beneficial quality of immigration, rather than cheap labor quantity, and works to maintain the quality of life and the culture of its citizens, rather than disrupting it and displacing them. Sustainable immigration is the only answer to out of control immigration pollution.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

No Room in Obama's Jerusalem for the Jew

By On November 21, 2009
The same media which can't be bothered to notice that there is a proxy war going on between Iran and Saudi Arabia in Yemen, with Saudi jets bombing civilian targets. Who have paid no attention whatsoever to a week of violence between Algerians and Egyptians that included stonings and death threats, are up in arms over the building of 900 housing units in the Gilo neighborhood in Jerusalem.

The Obama Administration and the media are naturally not upset by the Jerusalem municipality's decision to build 500 housing units for Arabs in Jerusalem. No they're upset by a private Jewish housing project built on privately owned land. And that double standard aptly conveys their premise that a Jewish house in Jerusalem is a "settlement", while an Arab house in Jerusalem is just a house. A Jewish home violates the "status quo" and is "unhelpful for peace", while an Arab home is just a home. There is of course a name for that sort of policy, it's one that Jimmy Carter who is still continuing his tour on behalf of Hamas knows quite well, Apartheid.

In response to the Nof Zion construction, Obama warned that, "additional settlement building does not contribute to Israel’s security".But Nof Zion is not about security, as much as it is about an overcrowded Jewish population in Jerusalem looking for someplace to live. When the Arabs seized half of Jerusalem in Israel's War of Independence, they forcibly expelled the Jewish population of Jerusalem in a brutal act of ethnic cleansing that goes ignored by the same leftists who focus on elderly Arab men waving keychains in the air. Homes belonging to Jewish families were replaced by Arab families, who in turn were not expelled when Israel liberated and reunited both halves of Jerusalem in 1967.

While countries such as England recognized Jordan's annexation of East Jerusalem, they have failed to recognize Israel's reunification of the city. This has led to the ongoing absurdity in which children born in Jerusalem are treated as stateless by the US government and the US embassy remains in Tel Aviv, while the US Consulate in East Jerusalem does its best to pretend that it's in the capital of Palestine, completely refusing to recognize Israel's existence.

Were security the issue, Gilo which faces the Arab towns of Beit Jala and Al Khader, and has been shot at repeatedly from them, would be a poor choice to live in. But Jerusalem is bulging at the seams. The price of housing has shot up, and while US Ambassador Richard H. Jones may have told Jewish residents of Jerusalem that "Sometimes people do have to move to a different location. They cannot always stay close to their families", the reality is that living next to their families is exactly what people want to do. Regardless of what the State Department thinks about the matter.

1800 years ago the Romans expelled the Jewish population of Jerusalem and renamed it Aelia Capitolina, a pagan city, and renamed Israel, Syria Palaestina. Today Obama and the State Department seem determined to do the very same thing. By calling a Jerusalem neighborhood, a "settlement", Obama is actively attacking the right of Jews to live in Jerusalem. If Jewish Jerusalem is a settlement, then effectively every other part of Israel where Jews live is a settlement too.

When even even liberal US news outlets such as CNN have described Gilo as a Jewish neighborhood, in contrast to radical left wing British outlets such as the BBC and Reuters, who branded it as a "settlement", Obama's shift is a deliberate one. Helpful as always, UN Secretary General Ki Ban Moonbat stepped in to denounce Gilo as a "settlement built on Palestinian land that undermines efforts for peace”. Considering that Gilo already holds a population of 50,000, the land was privately owned and the Jewish presence there goes back to the Book of Joshua, but the facts are no obstacle to the lies.

In Time Magazine, the increasingly unhinged Joe Klein claimed that Gilo "would be the capital of Palestine", with presumably a Hadrianiac or Jordanian style ethnic cleansing solution for the 50,000 Jews who live there right now. Not that I imagine that would stop him in the least, so long as he had someone else to do the dirty work for him.

But finally what is the basis for calling the Gilo neighborhood a "settlement"? The land on which Gilo was built was bought and owned by its Jewish residents. That land was occupied and seized by Jordan in 1948, until Israel liberated the territory in 1967. To call Gilo a "settlement", recognizes the Jordanian invasion and seizure of the land as legitimate, while treating the Jewish presence there as illegitimate.

And that is the real basis behind all this madness. The reason why a Jewish home in Jerusalem or anywhere in Israel is a settlement. To speak of "settlements" is to claim that the Jewish presence in Israel is illegitimate. And while some Israeli leftists may fondly imagine that settlers are religious Jews who live in caravans, as the case of Gilo once again demonstrates, all of Israel is a settlement.

And that is why as far as the world's diplomats are concerned, an Arab terrorist has more right to open fire on a Jewish family driving down the road, than the Israeli army has to shoot that same terrorist. And by giving in to US pressure to negotiate directly with the PLO, by signing the Oslo accords and by repeatedly agreeing to talk peace with Arafat and Abbas, the door was opened to greater and greater delegitimization of Israel.

Israel's global diplomatic position is far worse than it was 17 years ago. Israel's strategic position is far worse than it was 17 years ago. The most rabid bigotry and the ugliest incitement has become the norm, the sort of language you would once hear in Riyadh or Damascus has now become cocktail party chatter in London, Paris and Washington D.C. All of Israel's concessions have combined to put a gun to Jerusalem, and then to the rest of the land for a great going out of business, everything must go sale.

The case of Gilo is one more wake up call that not only our terrorist "peace partners", but even the so-called honest brokers of the world community do not believe that Jews have the right to live anywhere in Israel. Their backing of a Palestinian state has nothing to do with peace, as the fact that peace has failed to emerge over 17 years has not in any way dampened their ardor and enthusiasm for the project. Nor is it about a Two State Solution bringing regional stability. Even the dimmest paper pushers in the State Department and Foreign Ministry know that even were a Palestinian state to be created, the result would be more regional instability, not less. Only a One State Solution can succeed, and that solution is an Arab state and no Israel. The "Peace Process" and the "Two State Solution" are an incremental approach to bringing about that final solution.

The men and women who toiled and worked the land, who turned swamps and desert into farmland and cities, understood that if there was no room for Jews in Israel, there was no room for Jews anywhere. Palestinian Islamic terrorism in turn is driven by the national and religious imperative to destroy the only non-Muslim country in the Middle East. And while America and Europe decry Israel's capital as a Jewish settlement, Muslim settlements are springing up in their own capitals. While the cocktail party chatter is that serving up Israel on a platter to the beast will keep them safe, the violence is already in their streets. The same violence that Israel was built as a refuge against. And if Israel falls, they will be the next item on the menu.


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