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Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Ben & Jerry's Called for Open Borders While Exploiting Migrant Children

By On February 28, 2023
No company has been as vocal about fighting for migrants and exploiting them.

“We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: human beings can’t be illegal,” the ice cream maker declared. Its advocacy for illegal migrants even led to a clash with the British government which told it to “stick to ice cream”. In the United States, the leftist brand debuted a new flavor ‘Pecan Resist’, and bragged that it would “resist the Trump administration’s regressive and discriminatory policies” to build a future for “refugees and immigrants”.

The ugly truth behind the virtue signaling was that Ben & Jerry’s depended on migrant labor to make its overpriced ice cream. A year before Trump took office, the progressive company faced protests by migrant workers who spoke of having to live in barns without heat during the Vermont winter while milking cows at midnight and being injured by exploding glass milk bottles.

Ben & Jerry’s claimed that it supported open borders because of the company’s “social mission” and “values”. Those values were measured in the dollar and cents bottom line. The milk that went into the company’s ice cream depended on the cheap labor of those same migrants. Open borders wasn’t an abstraction, it was a steady source of labor to be churned into ice cream.

When the Biden administration rammed open the southern borders, flooding the country with millions of migrants, adult migrant workers were quickly supplemented by children.

A New York Times investigation found that Ben & Jerry’s was among the corporate brands benefiting from child labor. Of the various companies, Ben & Jerry’s was the most shameless about the use of child labor with Cheryl Pinto, its head of “values-led sourcing”, stating that “if migrant children needed to work full time, it was preferable for them to have jobs at a well-monitored workplace.” It’s an argument that sounds straight out of Oliver Twist.

Pinto, a former risk manager for its Unilever parent company, had been dubbed “Ben & Jerry’s sorceress” who focused on positive social impact. The sorcery turned out to be of the Hansel & Gretel variety with children being lured to the ovens of an ice cream gingerbread house.

Behind all the buzzwords about “equity” and “climate justice” are the children working so that Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield can get even richer while distracting us with virtue signaling.

Ben & Jerry’s has a lot of experience with “well-monitored workplaces” for child labor. The company, which has boasted of its support for Black Lives Matter, had been previously accused of benefiting from the slave labor of 8-year-olds on cocoa plantations in Africa, vanilla plantations in Madagascar, and palm oil on Indonesian plantations.

The open borders that Ben & Jerry’s had advocated for brought child labor to America.

In 2021, a Ben & Jerry’s franchise owner in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina was caught employing 12-year-olds, but the latest revelations about the company are a good deal worse.

The New York Times story describes a 14-year-old migrant boy who had his hand crushed in an industrial milking machine on a dairy farm. While the paper does not name the company, Ben & Jerry’s sources milk from farms in Middlebury VT where the accident took place.

Ben & Jerry’s and Pinto had previously made headlines for reaching an agreement with Milk With Dignity, a migrant workers group, at which one worker boasted that “I never had a day off before the program. But now I have two days off per month.” Ben & Jerry’s claimed that its partnership with Milk With Dignity means that the farms it uses no longer exploit anybody.

“Respect for human rights is one of our core values,” Pinto claimed.

The Milk With Dignity code goes so far as to bar “the threat or use of sexual or physical assault” against workers, which is pretty noble of Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield. Nothing says respect for human rights like agreeing not to sexually assault workers.

But the code only bars “systemic unlawful child labor”. That’s quite a few loopholes in 4 words. The full wording in the code defines “the use of systemic unlawful child labor, as defined by applicable law in the jurisdiction in which the farm is located.” That’s as good as an admission. Child labor can be systemic or it can be unlawful, but it can’t be both systemic and unlawful.

Behind the meaningless organic labels and the images of bucolic cows and photogenic hipster farmers marketed by progressive upselling brands like Ben & Jerry’s is a dairy industry that, despite its location across the country, looks a lot like California’s illegal alien farms.

A local paper described “the coyotes who smuggle migrants across the border, the people who run safe houses, the van drivers who make regular interstate and cross-country runs, and the farmers are part of a complex, underground system powered by cell phones and money.”

“Sex traffickers are a small part of that network. Most of the dairy workers are young men stuck on rural farms with no transportation. Enter the pimps who, exploiting the loneliness and isolation of the workers, drive women to remote farms. A prostitution ring in Vermont came to light in 2011, when police arrested two men who brought women to have sex with workers for $60 a trick.”

“They just bring girls, Mexicans and Colombians, mostly Latinas,” Carlos, who came to the country as an “unaccompanied minor”, told a journalist.

That’s the grim reality behind all the hipster brands and leftist politics, the cutesy celebrity names, the photos of woke icons like Stephen Colbert and Ava DuVernay, are Mexican teens living in unheated barns and working to milk cows twice a day in between visits to trafficked girls. It’s little wonder that Ben & Jerry’s keeps searching for new radical causes to embrace.

In 2021, Ben & Jerry’s announced that it was joining a boycott of Israel because selling ice cream in the Jewish State was “inconsistent with our values”. The move came at the behest of Anuradha Mittal, the Ben and Jerry’s social justice board chairwoman, who had defended Hamas and Hezbollah, and whose offices were decorated with a “Support the Intifada” poster.

Selling ice cream in Israel was inconsistent with Ben & Jerry’s values, child labor wasn’t.

Ben & Jerry’s support for BDS and for other radical leftist causes like BLM came as it was trying to divert attention from the products and processes at the heart of its business. Its social justice logorrhea has led the company in just the last month to endorse critical race theory as a “long-overdue correction to the whitewashed history taught in most American schools”, to claim that brain injuries are worse for black people and to endorse slavery reparations. Much like hating Israel, none of this has anything to do with ice cream. And that’s the whole point.

Like a criminal in police custody, Ben & Jerry’s would like to talk about anything and everything in the world except its own crimes. Smearing Israel, America, Jews, white people and anyone else is a convenient distraction from the fact that the social justice ice cream empire is built on child labor and on the open borders it champions and whose exploitation it benefits from.

Ben & Jerry’s talks nonstop about its values. What are its actual values beyond its hashtags about BLM, open borders, Israel, sexism, transphobia and climate justice? As Groucho Marx quipped, “Those are my principles, and if you don’t like them… well, I have others.”

The only values of the ice cream, that is uniquely flat and tasteless in all its diversity of overpriced social justice flavors, are what it does, not what it claims to believe. One of those revealing moments came some years ago when migrant workers protested in a march to the Ben & Jerry’s factory. A few of the illegal aliens were arrested.

​“We are concerned that hard-working, productive members of our community, who contribute to the success of dairy farms in Vermont, would face criminalization,” Ben & Jerry’s said, in a statement that had a very different tone than its usual bellicose social justice tweets. ​“We need policy change that serves Vermont’s dairy workers, farmers, and industry as a whole.”

That was the sound of Ben & Jerry’s talking about the intersectionality of its support for open borders and its business model that depended on illegal aliens. Another came when its values sourcing boss responded to the New York Times story by suggesting that, “If migrant children needed to work full time, it was preferable for them to have jobs at a well-monitored workplace.”

Those are Ben & Jerry’s real values. They’re not as marketable, but unlike the others, they’re true.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.

Sunday, February 26, 2023

The Court Says They’re Pirates, the IRS Says They’re a Nonprofit

By On February 26, 2023
In Front Page Magazine’s extensive series on the leftist organizations that the IRS has allowed to keep their tax deductible status, we have covered Chinese Communist front groups, art vandals, domestic terrorists, pedophiles, illegal alien smugglers and the enablers of murderers.

Every time we dive deeper into these investigations, someone asks if there’s anywhere that the IRS will draw the line. A few weeks ago, someone suggested pirates. Surely there couldn’t be nonprofit pirates with tax deductible donations that the IRS has decided is a legitimate charity.

Not only is there a pirate nonprofit, but it’s been denounced by the court, described as eco-terrorists by the FBI, and has shown up on Interpol’s Red Notice while being the subject of international incidents without ever persuading the IRS to drop its 501(c)(3) status.

A decade ago, the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruling stated that, “you don’t need a peg leg or an eye patch. When you ram ships; hurl glass containers of acid; drag metal-reinforced ropes in the water to damage propellers and rudders; launch smoke bombs and flares with hooks; and point high-powered lasers at other ships, you are, without a doubt, a pirate.”

The group in question was Sea Shepherd: a trendy anti-fishing organization whose celebrity supporters included Pamela Anderson, Martin Sheen and Sean Penn. And a decade after the Court of Appeals stated that Sea Shepherd’s alleged acts were “clear instances of violent acts for private ends, the very embodiment of piracy”, Sea Shepherd maintains a presence on Facebook, Amazon, YouTube and other Big Tech platforms that purged conservations for “extremism”,where it sells merchandise featuring its version of the skull and bones pirate flag.

And it has retained its status with the IRS as a nonprofit 501(c)(3) charity for over 40 years.

In 2002, the Domestic Terrorism Section Chief of the FBI told the House Resources Committee that Sea Shepherd was an example of “eco-terrorism”. The IRS took no action even when it was caught harboring a nonprofit that federal law enforcement had described as eco-terrorists.

Unlike many of the other leftist groups we previously profiled, the IRS did begin an audit of Sea Shepherd a few months after the Court of Appeals ruling. The token IRS effort was likely in response to pressure from Japan whose whaling ships faced harassment from the group.

While the IRS has ignored conservative protests over tax deductible status being granted to domestic terrorist groups, the Japanese government spent years lobbying to suspend Sea Shepherd’s nonprofit status. After a court ruling described the group as pirates, the Japanese could not believe that the Obama administration still refused to take action. Finally the Japanese embassy turned directly to the IRS, including contacting Lois Lerner, who would become infamous for her role in the IRS targeting of conservative and Jewish opponents of Obama.

The IRS went through the motions of auditing Sea Shepherd, then it dispatched a letter claiming that “our examination of the information return(s) indicated above disclosed that your organization continues to qualify for exemption from Federal income tax.” The Internal Revenue Service does not however seem to have consulted the Court of Appeals, the FBI or the law.

As the Freedom Center’s pamphlet, Internal Radical Service by David Horowitz and John Perazzo, discusses, regulations state that “exempt purposes may generally be equated with the public good, and violations of law are the antithesis of the public good”. They warn that, “violation of constitutionally valid laws is inconsistent with exemption under IRC 501(c)(3)” and that “planned activities that violate laws are not in furtherance of a charitable purpose”.

Is piracy not the antithesis of the public good? Which part of ramming ships or hurling containers of acid would the IRS consider to be in the furtherance of a charitable purpose?

Some years earlier, the IRS had demanded that the Coalition for Life of Iowa explain “how all of your activities, including the prayer meetings held outside of Planned Parenthood, are considered educational as defined under 501(c)(3).” Did the IRS ask Sea Shepherd how “hurling fiery and acid-filled projectiles” is considered educational?

To the IRS, praying outside abortion clinics might be a violation, but not sinking ships.

Until its recent makeover, Sea Shepherd was not shy about its activities.

“I’ve sunk ten whaling ships and destroyed tens of millions of dollars’ worth of illegal fishing gear, and I’m not in jail,” Paul Watson, Sea Shepherd’s founder and until its recent pivot, a leading figure in the group, had boasted. The IRS was surely aware of such statements.

While the IRS failed to take action, the Court of Appeals issued a permanent injunction in 2016 barring Sea Shepherd from “physically attacking” ships from Japan’s Institute of Cetacean Research. The IRS did not believe that “physically attacking” was a problem for a nonprofit.

The IRS not only shrugged off accusations of piracy and eco-terrorism, it also ignored the attempted murder charges. Watson had been arrested in Germany a year before the audit for an outstanding charge of “causing a danger of drowning” in Costa Rica over a confrontation with shark hunters that was later dropped. Interpol issued a Red Notice for Watson over the incident.

The IRS shrugged at Interpol as it had at the FBI, the Court of Appeals and multiple countries.

Japan however issued its own Interpol Red Notice for Watson which blocked Sea Shepherd’s ability to obtain insurance. Watson was forced out and officially resigned in 2022. Sea Shepherd has rebranded as working with governments to fight illegal poaching and has sued Watson for “infringement, unfair competition, false advertising,” and, ironically, “cyberpiracy” over his use of its ‘Jolly Roger’ pirate flag for his own operation.

Watson, who has pledged to continue the fight, launched his own organization: Sea Shepherd Origins, and he’s raising money through the Paul Watson Foundation. The Foundation’s purpose is to “carry on Captain Paul Watson’s effective agenda” “through a unique strategy of aggressive non-violence.”

Despite everything, the Watson Foundation was approved by the IRS as a 501(c)(3).

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.

Saturday, February 25, 2023

Systemic Racism in East Palestine

By On February 25, 2023

Two years ago, Transportation Secretary Buttigieg announced that he was making the fight against “systemic racism” into the core of his job. The failed South Bend mayor came out of the gate claiming that highways were racist. Last year, he went to Birmingham to announce the launch of a $1 billion plan to tear down racist highways and implement transportation equity.

Taxpayer money would be directed to “economically disadvantaged communities, especially those with projects that are focused on equity and environmental justice.”

East Palestine was not one of them.

On Feb 3, a train filled with hazardous materials derailed in East Palestine. That same day, an interview with Buttigieg about “infrastructure, safety and equity” appeared in Forbes Magazine.

Buttigieg did not mention the disaster in East Palestine, instead he talked about how “communities of color” were being “destroyed” by infrastructure investment and how under Biden, they’d have the opportunity to “reconnect across highways or railways that divide them.”

In East Palestine, the thousands of residents, unfortunate enough to be born the wrong color, were terrified of drinking the water or taking showers. Rashes were breaking out in children. Those who could afford to, fled the area across the racist highways Buttigieg had yet to destroy.

Buttigieg would not offer any comment on what happened for another ten days.

The disaster that would be compared to Chernobyl around the world did not change Buttigieg’s schedule or his priorities. At the National Association of Counties, Buttigieg complained that there were too many white construction workers working on projects in black neighborhoods. That same day he finally got around to tweeting a press release, “I continue to be concerned about the impacts of the Feb 3 train derailment.” Afterward he tweeted about his NACO event.

In his great search for systemic racism, Buttigieg had finally found some by practicing it.

Last year, the EPA’s Michael Regan, hailed as the first black administrator to hold the role, visited Alabama on the anniversary of the Selma march and claimed that black residents faced water discrimination.

“It’s very sobering to see that in 2022, in the United States of America, there are people who are subjected to situations that I don’t think any of us would want to be subjected to,” Regan fulminated. “These individuals deserve what every American deserves, which is clean water and a safe environment.”

Buttigieg retweeted a video of Regan ranting to the camera and contended that, “it’s a shocking and moving example of what environmental injustice looks like.”

The actual shocking example of environmental injustice was painted by Regan and Buttigieg.

Two weeks after the disaster, Regan finally visited and unconvincingly assured residents of East Palestine that their water was safe to drink and the air safe to breathe. He claimed that he couldn’t have come earlier so as not to “take away resources from the state highway patrol”.

Notably absent from Buttigieg and Regan’s response was any of the passion that they had brought to transportation and water issues that they could blame on systemic racism.

“We know that systemic racism, lack of interest in low-income communities, lack of political representation, have contributed to the disproportionate impact of black and brown in low-income communities being exposed to a lack of access to good quality drinking water,” Regan had falsely claimed before.

The residents of East Palestine are 95% white and so their water must be safe to drink.

White privilege means poisoned water and air, but white people are immune to toxic chemicals.

Had East Palestine been 95% black, we know how the story would have played out. Experts would have been brought on the air to explain that hazardous materials are more likely to travel through black areas. Fake history, like that of Buttigieg’s lie about highways being used to keep black people from visiting New York City beaches, would have been trotted out to claim that this was a systemically racist policy bordering on genocide which had poisoned generations.

East Palestine might have benefited from such attention if its people had not been white.

Buttigieg’s racist infrastructure obsession is a recapitulation of the Douglass Plan that he produced during his presidential campaign in a failed effort to win over black voters.

Under ‘Infrastructure’, his Douglass plan claimed that infrastructure problems “disproportionately affect communities of color” and that “Flint is not alone. A 2017 Reuters study indicated that almost 4,000 communities had levels of lead in water or homes twice as high as Flint’s.”

One of those places was Buttigieg’s own South Bend.

One South Bend neighborhood had lead levels that were six times higher than Flint’s. But South Bend is 58% white while Flint is 56% black. The near racial mirror images are exactly what systemic racism looks like.

“If we can get clean water to a base in Afghanistan, we should be able to get clean water to Flint, Michigan,” Buttigieg had sneered. Or maybe even South Bend and East Palestine.

Meanwhile, East Palestine residents are told to drink tainted water and stop asking questions.

“I trust what the science is saying,” Regan pontificated.

According to the Douglass Plan, the focus would be on dealing with environmental threats in “communities of color”. East Palestine isn’t a community of color and so it’s been left out.

What is the purpose of infrastructure?

According to Buttigieg’s introduction to his department’s unconstitutional equity plan, “transportation has always been inseparable from America’s struggle for racial and economic justice.” From a critical race theory standpoint, the only meaningful way to look at transportation or anything else is through race. And such a perspective systematizes the very racism that it claims to be fighting. Buttigieg’s Department of Transportation, like all agencies in the Biden administration, made racism into the centerpiece of everything. And children were poisoned.

But it was okay because the children came into this world the wrong color.

The pursuit of equity put some people ahead of others. Everything revolved around the search for systemic racism even as a toxic train barreled down on East Palestine.

On Feb 21, nearly three weeks after the disaster, Buttigieg condescended to suggest that, “I am very interested in getting to know the residents of East Palestine, hearing from them about how they’ve been impacted and communicating with them about the steps that we’re taking.”

“But yes, when the time is right, I do plan to visit East Palestine. I don’t have a date for you right now.”

Buttigieg was too busy announcing that the University of Alabama would be getting $8 million to buy electric buses, billions more would be spent on electric car chargers for Tesla owners and that $435 million would be spent on the “next generation of diverse transportation researchers”.

When Buttigieg finally visited East Palestine, it was accompanied by snippy remarks aimed at reporters and the general sense that this is not what he wanted to be doing. There are a lot of priorities and the people of East Palestine are incredibly privileged already. Like Buttigieg, they’re white, unlike him they’re not members of a sexual minority, which means that they are even more privileged than he is. So why are they complaining? They ought to be grateful that somewhere the “next generation of diverse transportation researchers” is envisioning which racist highways need to be demolished and replaced with bike lanes.

The people of East Palestine deserved a Department of Transportation and an EPA that were run without regard to race, instead they got a systemically racist DOT and EPA that left them behind, watched while they and their children were poisoned, and shrugged at the spectacle.

And all Americans, regardless of race, deserve a DOT free of systemic racism.

The only remaining systemically racist parts of America are those that believe in systemic racism. Critical race theory needs to be forced out of not just our schools, but all of our institutions. The polluted water and air of East Palestine are a warning of what happens if we continue to allow a corrupt racist bureaucracy to run our government and endanger our lives.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.

Thursday, February 23, 2023

The End of Literature

By On February 23, 2023
“This book was written many years ago, and so we regularly review the language to ensure that it can continue to be enjoyed by all today.” That was how Puffin and the Roald Dahl Story Company announced that they would be rewriting significant parts of Dahl’s books.

But there isn’t actually a Puffin Books or a Roald Dahl Story Company.

Once a beloved children’s books publisher, Puffin is just another of the brands owned by Bertelsmann, the German ex-Nazi giant book monopoly, also the force behind much of literary wokeness, which publishes Ibram X. Kendi’s “How to Be an Antiracist”, Robin DiAngelo’s “White Fragility”, and Ta-Nehisi Coates’s “Between the World and Me”. And the Roald Dahl Story Company is owned by Netflix. The largest television streaming producer and book publisher decided that it would be best to monetize Dahl’s books by giving them a woke makeover.

What’s happening to Dahl isn’t a new phenomenon.

Another arm of Bertelsmann was caught purging Dr. Seuss books that its author actually wrote and replacing them with new “inclusive” books by “diverse” writers that he didn’t write. Classic children’s authors have become corporate brands with hundreds of millions of dollars on the line. The Hollywood executives who are now in charge of Seuss or Dahl have no more of a problem going back and rewriting a book than they do asking a screenwriter to change a script.

Bertelsmann and Netflix go back and “regularly review the language” in books and then rewrite it the way that the entertainment industry can decide that Superman ought to be black, that his son ought to be gay or that ‘Truth, Justice and the American Way’ needs to become, ‘Truth, Justice and a Better Tomorrow’. That’s what reducing literature to intellectual property does.

Copyright, originally meant to protect the rights of the author, has instead allowed Hollywood to buy up the work of authors and then butcher them. Netflix paid an estimated $686 million for the Roald Dahl Story Company. Dr. Seuss Enterprises, which already has deals with Netflix and major studios, is considering its own total sale that would probably top $1 billion. Amazon paid $500 million for the rights to make The Rings of Power: a woke pastiche of Tolkien.

Companies are not paying that kind of money just to keep books from the 30s or 40s in print.

As Netflix put it when describing its Dahl deal, it’s out to build “a unique universe across animated and live-action films and TV, publishing, games, immersive experiences, live theater, consumer products and more.” Copyright on the books will lapse, but Netflix, Bertelsmann, Disney, and other giants are looking to turn authors into a “universe”, much like the Marvel Universe which has taken over theaters and made Disney fantastically rich, while disposing of their actual works. They’ve done this for so long with comic books that it probably never even occurred to the executives that there would be any pushback when they began doing it to children’s books. But there’s more at stake with books than with Spider-Man.

And yet it’s not hard to see how we got here.

Amazon built the base of its massive monopoly by gobbling up retail channels for books by, in part, turning them from physical matter made out of dead trees into a digital file on its proprietary Kindle devices. Electronic books are easy to seamlessly edit in a way that would be obscene to do to an actual book. A word here, a few words there and no one will notice.

Our affection for books, the conviction that they are something sacred, is closely linked to their physicality. When we look at a copy of the First Folio, we experience a connection to Shakespeare and the history of English drama and literature. At New York’s Public Library, flanked by its grand lions, you can find a writing desk used by Charles Dickens.

This is the sort of thing that matters if you believe that books are a state of communion, rather than a holographic palimpsest that can be infinitely reinvented as generations of literary theory has taught. If a grad student’s interpretation of Frankenstein has as much validity as what Mary Shelley actually meant, then why not go a step further and rewrite not just movie adaptations, but the book itself? Or argue that Shakespeare was really a black woman? Literary theory has devalued the author and the endless efforts to find new things to say about old works gave way to wokeness by applying leftist lenses that updated them in line with the new politics.

What’s happening to Dahl and other authors is just the implementation of academic theories.

One of the characters in a New York Times ad is described as “imagining Harry Potter without its creator”. The ad was promoting the paper’s story about sexual identity activists eliminating J.K. Rowling from their universe. What is a book without its author? Nothing. Every work is rooted in the identifiable tastes, values and idiosyncrasies of writers. But if you come to view authors as creators, rather than writers, and books as participatory linchpins of imaginary universes, prompts for the ‘headcanon’ of their fans, then the writers disappear.

That’s how Black Panther, the work of two Jewish guys from New York, working off crude pulp ancient African fantasies like those of H. Rider Haggard, was reinvented as a black nationalist proto-history that the cultural establishment pays tribute to. The idea of Wakanda is compelling to those who fantasize about their origins in an advanced African master race, the reality of Stanley Lieber (Stan Lee) and Jacob Kurtzberg (Jack Kirby), ruins that glorious fantasy.

J.K. Rowling was a cult figure when she was misinterpreted as using Harry Potter to champion children who felt different before discovering their inner powers, not in the traditional hero’s journey sense, but in the sexual one, and was canceled when she made it clear that she was not on board with most of that. Harry Potter became a universe whose corporate overlords made it clear that Rowling was no longer welcome around the works that she had written.

Dahl and Seuss are not around to be canceled. That makes them easier to rewrite. Their corporate overlords reduce them to a style and a sensibility, a rhyme scheme and some silly words, and ultimately a brand like Macy’s or McDonald’s that are universally familiar, but don’t require us to actually think about Rowland Hussey Macy or Richard McDonald. Writers become the founders of fictional universes who can be set aside, much like Rowland or Richard were.

A fundamental difference is that literature is not a fast food chain. The ‘property’ element of intellectual property rests on copyright that no longer serves authors, but corporations. Congressional Republicans and Democrats passed the Mickey Mouse Protection Act which created a century of copyright and extended it to fifty years from the death of the author. This wasn’t done to benefit writers and artists, but to benefit Disney. Perpetual copyright armed Hollywood with vaults full of intellectual properties while unleashing a cultural war on America.

The solution is fundamentally reforming copyright law.

Wokes can’t create anything original and enduring. Peak TV and the billions spent in a handful of years, more than Hollywood had spent for decades on TV shows and movies, proved it. Netflix, Amazon and other giants are investing billions to lock down classic works because they don’t expect the new properties that they sank millions into developing to last past a few years.

Abusing copyright allows them to parasitically feed off the writers of the past while draining their work to comply with the politics of the present. Most of these intellectual property franchise ‘universes’ are woke ‘fanfic’ whose massive budgets can’t compensate for their hollowness. Incapable of creating enduring works, even when they have the rights to popular classics, they have to settle for constantly reinventing them politically as a distraction.

Copyright, meant to ensure the centrality of the authors in a publishing environment tilted toward publishers, has instead made them marginal figures while handing control to corporations who own ‘universes’. Some authors, like Rowling, are fortunate enough to at least enjoy the financial rewards of the arrangement, many others labor as sharecroppers in the corporate “universes”. Disney, on taking over Star Wars, decided to stop paying royalties to the writers who had been producing Science Fiction novels in that setting. Copyright had come to mean that writers have obligations to companies, but that companies had few if any obligations to writers.

All of this was bad enough when it came to movies and comic books, but turns into outright book burning when applied to literature. Netflix can do whatever it likes with its properties, but there’s no reason that books that are eighty years old should be anyone’s property.

If Netflix and Bertelsmann want to create a version of Dahl’s works in which you can’t turn two pages without hearing about the evils of fat-shaming or the importance of affirming all gender identities, they can do that. And anyone else should be able to do it too or publish the originals. Copyright on Dahl’s books doesn’t serve the author, who died in 1990, his grandson, a mediocre children’s story writer who lives in America and sold the whole estate, or even preserving the original works, which are being drastically altered. There isn’t a single good argument for itt except that Hollywood paid Congress a lot of money to pass a Mickey Mouse bill.

Copyright should exist to protect writers and books, or it should not exist at all.

Models developed in Hollywood and the comic book industry, always nightmares when it came to the rights of authors (Superman co-creator Joe Shuster sold off his rights for $130 and was reduced to delivering packages to the DC office while struggling to pay medical bills) are now being rolled out to classic works of literature by massive Big Tech and Hollywood monopolies.

Reforming copyright would rob them of their vast hoards of intellectual property whose language they review on an annual basis to ensure compliance with best practice DEI policies and release them to the public. It would force companies to reckon with the cultural bankruptcy of wokeness that has seen them blow through over $100 billion while creating not a single classic.

And it would remind all of us that the books we read are grounded in the work of real people. Many writers were flawed, dysfunctional, bigoted, and otherwise unpleasant human beings. Art flows from those complexities and it is impossible to edit them out by committee without losing the soul of a book. The wonder of a book lies in the duality of its aspirations and imperfections. The woke pursuit of political ideals, like Soviet literature, has produced nothing worthwhile.

And it never will.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Biden Administration Funds Anti-Netanyahu Coup

By On February 22, 2023
Even while Israeli children were being murdered by terrorists, the only thing the media wanted to talk about were the leftist protests against the new Israeli government’s democratic judicial reforms. And the Biden administration has joined this campaign attacking the move.

Israel’s new conservative government under Prime Minister Netanyahu has finally initiated the long overdue process of restoring democratic checks and balances by limiting the unlimited power of Israel’s Supreme Court. And the Left has threatened everything up to civil war to protect its illegitimate power while its angry protests have been spun as grassroots opposition.

What none of the news reports, editorials, public letters by prominent figures or statements by officials have revealed is that the Biden administration is funding the group behind the protests.

As David Isaac at JNS reported, the first major rally against democratic judicial reform attended by leftist opposition politicians was organized by a group known as the Movement for Quality Government. MQG receives annual funding from the State Department to purportedly conduct “classes” on democracy in Israeli schools. The State Department is well aware that MQG has a long history of waging lawfare against the Israeli government because its work has been cited in its “human rights” reports. While State Department funding was not programmed for protests, money is fungible and the Biden administration knows it’s funding an anti-Netanyahu group.

“The speakers at the rallies stand under the MQG banner when they call for insurgency, civil war and violence,” prominent Israeli journalist Caroline Glick wrote. “No one is asking the organizers who finances their activities. Someone is paying tens of millions of shekels to rent buses to transport scores of thousands of people to rallies, buy them flags, print banners and signs, rent stages and sound systems, and finance ad campaigns in every newspaper and on billboards across the country.”

MQG’s obsession with stopping the return of a Zionist government was so extreme that it generated a FARA registration by hiring a Washington D.C. law firm to for the “initiation of investigation of by one or more US government agencies” to look into ridiculous leftist smears that Netanyahu was having his laundry washed for free by the Trump administration.

(This may seem surreal, but the Israeli Left’s Netanyahu Derangement Syndrome is so extreme that one of its fake government investigations focused on his wife’s bottle recycling. The fake scandals invented by the Left were even referenced in a hilarious Netanyahu campaign ad.)

The Biden administration’s funding of MQG (a practice which technically began in 2020 under Trump, the year when the FARA registration happened) continued even as the group amped up its lawfare. The Obama administration had helped back the 2011 social justice protests in Israel, in which MQG was involved, that were widely seen as a rehearsal for Occupy Wall Street.

But MQG is a lot more than just an opposition group and its presence pulls back the curtain on the struggle to restore democracy and the motives of those opposed to it in Tel Aviv and D.C.

A leading criticism of the abusive power of the Israeli Supreme Court is that it hears cases based on lawsuits from groups like MQG without any standing. This has allowed the Court, which recognizes no limitations on its powers, to intervene in anything. Once MQG generates a case, the Supreme Court can then step in. MQG is not just an opposition group, it’s a key piece of the illegitimate infrastructure that has replaced democracy with a totalitarian judiciary.

An example of the authoritarian intertwining of MQG and the Supreme Court came when the leftist group filed a petition demanding the removal of the head of the Israeli Bar Association because of “his criticisms of the court.” If MQG opposes even any criticisms of the source of its power, it certainly is not about to accept democratic efforts to return that power to the people.

“From the Knesset I don’t expect anything,” Eliad Shraga, MQG’s boss, said dismissively of the democratically elected legislature at a protest against judicial reform. “The only help will come from the heroes in the Supreme Court.”

The Israeli Supreme Court gets its ability to intervene in any matter from MQG. And MQG gets funding from the Biden administration. It’s not hard to see why the Biden administration is opposed to democratic reforms that would impose checks on the power of MQG and the Court. Much as American leftists have opposed forcing NGOs like it to disclose sources of foreign funding. And it’s a good thing because otherwise we might not know who pulls their strings.

Israelis have long been concerned about the ability of foreign organizations, like those funded by Soros and foreign governments, to set the agenda no matter what the voters decide.

Democratic judicial reform is crucial to ending those abuses and that’s why Biden is so opposed.

While the Biden administration has often criticized Israel over its fight against Islamic terrorists, it took the unusual step of intervening in its domestic politics by attacking judicial reform.

Biden warned that Israeli democracy requires “checks and balances” from “an independent judiciary” and urged “building consensus for fundamental changes”.

During his recent visit to Israel, Secretary of State Blinken met with Isaac Herzog, a former leftist candidate currently serving as president, to bond over their mutual hate for democracy.

Blinken replied to Herzog’s urging to intervene by praising, “the clarity of your voice when it comes to finding a good way forward that builds consensus on the question of judicial reform.”

The rhetoric was part of a leftist push to kill judicial reform by taking it away from the parties chosen by the voters and handing it to Herzog: another unelected official. The Biden administration, the media and assorted officials claim that turning over judicial reform to Herzog will be a compromise that will provide a unifying consensus and end the protests.

“They want to destroy the system because the system wasn’t nice to them,” Shraga had ranted to the Washington Post while attacking judicial reform. “This is a hostile takeover by a bunch of crooks.”

A hostile takeover of Israel by a bunch of crooks is what judicial reform opponents are after.

Blinken and Herzog would have some potential common ground dating back to the Clinton administration. Before Herzog was the Labor Party’s candidate to run Israel, he was serving as Marc Rich’s lawyer. The international fugitive lobbied for a pardon from Bill Clinton through Herzog who met with at least one State Department figure. It’s not hard to imagine Herzog and Blinken conferring over a deal for the criminal who violated the embargo to buy oil from Iran.

Now that’s some real dirty laundry.

Herzog, who collected leftist scumbag criminals, also worked for another international fugitive, Octav Botnar. Herzog served as the trustee for Botnar’s estate while millions were funneled through it to fund anti-Netanyahu ads by an associate of top Democrat campaign pros like James Carville. Good thing there was that investigation of Netanyahu’s ice cream budget.

Why does the Biden administration want Marc Rich’s errand boy to oversee judicial reform?

There’s a long trail of corrupt connections between America’s Left and Israel’s Left rooted in the Clinton era. This “hostile takeover by a bunch of crooks” has wrecked both countries. And now the crooks are afraid, they’re sweating and screaming in the streets, they’re paying formerly respectable people to pen editorials attacking judicial reform, and some people are falling for it.

Everything that they’re saying is the opposite of the truth.

Judicial reform is not a threat to democracy: it’s the sole hope for restoring democracy. It would not usher in tyranny, but eliminate it. And the protest movement against it is every bit as authentic as the last astroturfed protests that were also meant to force out Netanyahu.

The Biden administration, like the Obama administration, is trying to undermine Israeli democracy while preserving the power of its leftist allies to impose their coup.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Al Qaeda’s New Leader is an Iranian Puppet

By On February 21, 2023
Despite appearing in the 9/11 Commission report, Democrats and their foreign policy allies have denied Iran’s ties to Al Qaeda The 9/11 Commission report noted that “senior managers in al Qaeda maintained contacts with Iran and the Iranian-supported worldwide terrorist organization Hezbollah” and that “Al Qaeda members received advice and training from Hezbollah.” The report went on to describe how Al Qaeda was able to move its people through Iran.

After Iran’s terror boss Qasem Soleimani was taken out, Vice President Mike Pence laid out the case by tweeting that he had “assisted in the clandestine travel to Afghanistan” of some of the terrorists who carried out the September 11 terrorist attacks. This would be in line with the 9/11 commission report, as well as admissions by Al Qaeda terrorists, describing the travel of hijackers involved in all four 9/11 attacks passing through Iran.

As was the case each time that the connection between Iran and Al Qaeda came up, media fact checkers and experts swarmed to ridicule the idea. This despite the fact that top Al Qaeda figures, including the man who has now been named as its new leader, were in a safe house operated by Soleimani’s Qods Force, and that Soleimani had personally approved the Al Qaeda base and that even the “welfare of Osama’s family was the personal responsibility” of Soleimani.

Denial has become much harder now that a UN report officially named Al Qaeda’s leader, after the death of Ayman Al-Zawahiri, as being Saif Al-Adel who has been in Iran since 2003.

According to reports at the time, Al-Adel had “fled to Iran last year to avoid U.S. forces searching for him in neighboring Afghanistan, but continued to operate” while also supposedly being under “house arrest”. He has now been under house arrest for twenty years and in those two decades, he’s gone from Al Qaeda’s no. 3 to no. 2 and now all the way to no. 1.

When Al-Adel headed to Iran, he was wanted for the deaths of Americans in the ‘Black Hawk Down’ attacks in Somalia and the bombings of our embassies in Africa. Even while supposedly in Iranian custody, he ordered the 2003 bombings in Saudi Arabia that killed 9 Americans.

Saif Al-Adel had been trained by the Soviets when he was in the Egyptian military before he fought against them, and it’s more likely that he was running Al Qaeda than Osama bin Laden or Zawahiri. Certainly after Bin Laden’s death, Al-Adel became Al Qaeda’s ‘shadow’ emir. With the fall of Afghanistan and growing pressure on Pakistan, Al Qaeda moved its core operations to Iran, where they would be completely out of our reach and where they could coordinate with the regime on waging a Sunni-Shiite terror campaign against American forces in Iraq.

Or at least that was the plan.

The UN report, collecting the information of member states, concedes that “Sayf al-‘Adl is now the de facto leader of Al-Qaida” but that “his leadership cannot be declared because of Al-Qaida’s sensitivity to Afghan Taliban concerns” and “the fact of Sayf al-‘Adl’s presence in the Islamic Republic of Iran”. But after ignoring the fact that a top Al Qaeda leader wanted for the deaths of numerous Americans was in Iran for this long, our leaders will go on ignoring it.

The State Department, like Al Qaeda and Iran, are all trying to avoid the elephant in the room.

And that’s because Al Qaeda isn’t what we think it is and it never really was. Making Osama bin Laden into the public face of Al Qaeda, complete with videos of him posing with a Kalashnikov in a cave, and connecting Al Qaeda to the fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan, manufactured a myth that was useful in recruiting Muslim terrorists and misleading Americans.

With Bin Laden long dead and Al Qaeda much less relevant, few even know that this was propaganda. When we found Osama, he wasn’t hiding in a cave but living in luxury in a Pakistani military town. He had a limited role in the actual leadership and had been laboring to persuade the group that would become ISIS, which back then was known as Al Qaeda in Iraq, to leave Iran’s Shiite allies alone. Instead, ISIS would go on to wage a Sunni-Shiite civil war.

Al Qaeda became a rebranding of Egyptian Islamic Jihad, a Muslim Brotherhood splinter group, led by Ayman Al-Zawahiri, Osama’s successor, and in which Saif Al-Adel, Zawahiri’s successor, played a key role. Behind the mythos of fighters in Afghanistan posing with weaponry in the scrub were a bunch of Egyptians from the Muslim Brotherhood like Zawahiri and Al-Adel.

Al Qaeda was really just the Egyptian Islamic Jihad in drag. And EIJ had been backed by Iran as payback against Egypt’s Sadat, whom it suspected of plotting to bring it down and restore the Shah’s regime, and later to undermine the Soviet presence next door in Afghanistan.

That is still not too dissimilar from Al Qaeda’s current role as an Iranian puppet.

The Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda were at the center of Iran’s plans for a grand Sunni-Shiite alliance that would topple Egypt and Saudi Arabia and drive out America.

Saif Al-Adel’s sojourn for decades in Iran testifies to the ambitious scheme and the real reason for Al Qaeda’s downfall.

When Al Qaeda provided seed money for what would become ISIS, an Iraqi Jihadist movement that brought together Saddam’s old guard with a Jihadist pipeline running through Syria, the Sunni-Shiite alliance appeared underway. The Iraq War became what we know it as: a failed effort that cost a lot of American lives. But the alliance between Iran and Al-Qaeda did not prove to be a model for bringing Iraqis together to fight the United States. Instead it divided Al Qaeda.

Iraqi Shiites wanted payback against the Sunni minority that had ruled them. And Iraqi Sunnis, including those funded by Al Qaeda, found that the quickest way to become popular and recruit fighters was by targeting Iraqi Shiites. Both hated each other even more than they hated us.

Al Qaeda defeated our plans for Iraq, but at the cost of making a mockery of its own ambition to unite the Muslim world. A year after Al-Adel relocated to Iran, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq, built with a few thousand in seed money from Bin Laden, accused Shiites of being pagans, infidels and atheists, and responsible for Islamic defeats throughout history.

“The Shiite, have declared a secret war against the people of Islam. They are the proximate, dangerous enemy of the Sunnis, even if the Americans are also an archenemy. The danger from the Shiite, however, is greater and their damage is worse and more destructive to the nation than the Americans,” he wrote.

The grand Islamic alliance came apart into Sunni-Shiite civil wars in Iraq and Syria: where Assad’s support for the pipeline of Al Qaeda Jihadis into Iraq, backfired with those same terrorists coming after him. What had been Al Qaeda in Iraq was reborn as ISIS and spent as much time fighting Al Qaeda and other elements of the Muslim Brotherhood as anything else.

The original Al Qaeda was eclipsed by ISIS. Both groups took credit for crowdsourced attacks and other operations abroad, primarily in Europe, but had moved on to conventional insurgencies fought, for the most part, against other Muslims. History had repeated itself.

In Afghanistan, as in Syria and Iraq, ISIS has forced the Taliban and the former Haqqani allies of Al Qaeda to play defense for the Shiites, protecting their mosques and appeasing Iran. The rise of the Sunni-Shiite civil war as the defining conflict has spread from Iraq and Syria to Afghanistan proving that Islamic infighting can be even more seductive than fighting us.

But that has been true throughout Muslim history. One reason we’re all not living under Sharia is that its proponents have a tendency to kill each other over their theological debates.

The complex role of Al Qaeda and Iran in Syria’s civil war is driven home by the UN’s mention that Hurras al-Din, an Al Qaeda branch in Syria, is taking orders from Al-Adel. Even while the conventional narrative depicted a Sunni-Shiite conflict, the civil war was actually a much messier situation in which Syria, Iran, Russia, the Muslim Brotherhood, Al Qaeda and ISIS were alternately allying and fighting each other in the kind of conflict that only makes sense if you understand Arab clan warfare. Even as Iran acted as Assad’s lifeline, it was also funding and arming elements of Al Qaeda that alternated between fighting Assad and ISIS.

Toward the end of the Obama administration, Iran had rebooted Al Qaeda, using Osama’s son and Al-Adel, from a global terrorist organization to the command network for militias that it kept on a fairly loose leash in the hopes of being able to do some damage to its rivals and enemies.

America had fought Al Qaeda, but Iran had suborned it into its own creature.

When Al Qaeda’s people first arrived after 9/11 en masse, Iran rolled out the red carpet for them. The Exile, by Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark, describes how “they were put up at the white monolith of the four-star Howeyzeh Hotel on Taleqani Street, just down from General Suleimani’s headquarters in the former U.S. embassy” with “room service, a ladies-only gym, movies, and a swimming pool for the children” where “former fighters sat down together in comfort for the first time since 9/11.” The hotel did what Gitmo failed to do to Al Qaeda.

But it was the Iraq War and the Arab Spring that proved fatal to Al Qaeda: albeit not in any way that the Bush or Obama administrations could have imagined or anticipated. The war seemingly gave Al Qaeda what it really wanted, the opportunity to take over countries, but in the form of a poisoned chalice. The dream of carving our emirates or even a caliphate has failed.

Al Qaeda is at war with itself, divided into multiple splinter groups, the unrelenting grand vision of ISIS, detached from the theological infrastructure and the globalism of the Muslim Brotherhood founders, and an Al Qaeda command infrastructure that has become Iran’s puppet.

No wonder Al Qaeda doesn’t want to announce who its new leader is and has been for some time. Saif Al-Adel once sowed terror into Americans, now the great triumph of the ‘Sword of Islam’ was being allowed out by Iran to fight ISIS on its behalf in Syria.

Islam’s great dream is the unity of the Ummah, but its reality is the eternal civil war. The Sunni-Shiite divide is just the grand metaphor for the endless fighting between clans, family members, and movements. Osama might have thought that the Ummah was the truth of Islam, but toward the end of his career even he must have come to realize that it was Fitna.

Al Qaeda had set out to unify Islam and defeat the West. Instead it divided and defeated itself.

Islamic terrorism remains a grave threat, but the greatest threat is not posed by planes flying into New York City buildings, but planes landing at JFK Airport. For all of Gaddafi’s madness and eventual degrading death, he saw the future much more clearly than Osama bin Laden.

“We have 50 million Muslims in Europe. There are signs that Allah will grant Islam victory in Europe—without swords, without guns, without conquest—will turn it into a Muslim continent within a few decades,” the Libyan leader predicted.

We have one fewer decade and millions more immigrants since he said those words.

America and the free world face a serious threat, but it’s not as serious as the demographic threat. Osama’s approach could kill thousands of Americans, Iran’s nuclear weapons can kill millions or tens of millions, but only Gaddafi’s demographic weapons could eliminate America.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.

Monday, February 20, 2023

We’re All Coyotes Now

By On February 20, 2023
Last month, New York City’s Mayor Eric Adams was pleading with Colorado’s Governor Jared Polis to stop busing migrants to New York City. And then Adams began busing migrants to Canada. Now Quebec’s Premier Francois Legault is warning Adams to stop doing it.

Since Texas and Arizona’s GOP governors first began busing migrants to New York City, D.C. and Chicago, and since Florida’s Gov DeSantis made national headlines by flying migrants to Martha’s Vineyard, Democrats have decided that they can bus migrants too.

While Republicans like Abbott and DeSantis were accused of cruelty for dumping migrants elsewhere, Colorado Gov. Polis claimed that, unlike Republican governors who were using people as “political props”, he was “honoring our values by treating people with dignity and respect” by busing migrants to New York City and Chicago.

“Sending migrants to our cities whose systems are over capacity, where they may struggle to find shelter and other services is wrong and further victimizes these most vulnerable individuals,” Adams and Chicago’s embattled Mayor Lori Lightfoot wrote to Polis.

Last year, Mayor Lori Lightfoot claimed that Texas busing migrants to Chicago was “racist”. And then she began busing migrants to nearby suburbs.

New York City was already busing migrants to Florida.

After vocal protests about the unfairness of busing migrants to New York City, the city’s Commissioner of Immigration Affairs claimed that NYC’s busing is okay because many of the migrants “want to go to places like Florida where the largest community of Venezuelans live.”

Busing them to Florida was, “helping them get to their actual final destination.”

Republicans cruelly bus migrants because they’re bigots while Democrats kindly bus them to help them get to where they want to go. It’s substantively different if you’re a PR flack.

Busing migrants to other states was only wrong when Republicans did it. When DeSantis sent migrants to New York City, Adams called it a “political stunt”, but when he sent migrants to Florida, that was about helping the migrants go be with their own kind. Which wasn’t racist at all.

But with New York City shipping migrants to Florida, and Florida shipping them back to New York City, Adams began buying the migrants bus tickets to within sight of the Canadian border.

“We understand that the situation of migrants in New York poses major challenges, but the situation in Quebec and particularly in Montreal is even worse and constitutes an important humanitarian issue,” Quebec complained.

But unless Quebec starts helping them cross the border into America, they’re going to stay in Montreal. That’s what Democrats have figured out resulting in a game of musical migrant chairs.

In Arizona, Democrat Katie Hobbs will continue busing migrants while borrowing the rhetoric of Democratic governors and mayors like Polis and Adams. “We wanted to make sure that we were getting these folks transported in a way that was efficient and humane, and actually provided relief to the communities on the border that have the influx of these asylum seekers and don’t have the resources to help them,” she told the Arizona Republic.

“They’ve been accused of human trafficking,” she said, regarding Republican governors busing and flying migrants.. “We’re interested in focusing on the humanitarian aspects.”

It’s trafficking when Republicans do it, but humanitarian and humane when Democrats do.

Beneath the rhetoric, the reality is the same. No one can accommodate an invasion of millions that never seems to end. Busing migrants is a simple matter of survival.

El Paso’s Democrat mayor bused thousands of migrants to New York City and Chicago. But what was he supposed to do when overwhelmed Border Patrol officials began dropping off migrants at bus stations? And what is Adams supposed to do? And what is Quebec supposed to do except ship them to Baffin Bay or the Arctic Ocean? Or dump them back in America?

In a nation without borders or walls, every city and state is just a bus or plane ride away from a border crisis. And so they’re building their own ‘mobile’ walls by moving the migrants away.

Florida enacted the Unauthorized Alien Transport Program which allocates $10 million to move migrants to “sanctuary cities”. It’s the first state law in the nation to formally legalize busing and much as the media denounces it, busing has become the informal policy of the Democrats.

We’re all coyotes now.

Despite all the earnest pretenses, nobody, including the sanctuary cities can handle the mass migration enabled by open borders. The only difference between Republicans like Abbott and DeSantis and Democrats like Polis, Lightfoot and Adams is the hypocrisy.

The protection of the nation’s borders is one of the few legitimate functions of the federal government. Washington D.C. burns through trillions doing all sorts of things that it has no constitutional authority to do, from claiming jurisdiction over people’s ponds to censoring internet content to policing racism in local communities, but has refused to secure the border.

After the Supreme Court’s decision in Arizona v. United States prevented states from enforcing any kind of immigration law, states and cities have no other recourse. Chief Justice Roberts, Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer and Sotomayor put the sole authority for immigration enforcement in the hands of the federal government and have nothing to say about what cities and states can do when the federal government decides to open the border and flood them with migrants.

Biden has opened the border as wide as it can get and millions of illegals have swarmed through: overwhelming federal, state and municipal systems. And the current Supreme Court has little to offer beyond helping states try to keep Title 42 in place to remove some of the migrants. But Biden’s DOJ has announced that the end of the pandemic emergency also ends Title 42 (even while arguing that the “emergency” still covers his illegal student loan bailout.)

Whatever the Supreme Court does, using a pandemic emergency to limit migration is a temporary solution. A Republican Congress could modify or tear up much of the asylum system, including LBJ’s UN treaty, that makes mass migration possible, in the unlikely event that it chooses to exercise its powers to modify existing laws for some base other than the Chamber of Commerce, but there is no conventional remedy for a flagrant disregard for border security.

Except impeachment.

If a president were to unilaterally announce a surrender to China, dismantling our military and flying the enemy flag over the White House, there would be significant resistance. Allowing an even larger mass invasion by migrants that transforms the country is no different.

Until the White House does its legal duty or states are empowered to secure their own territories, everyone, Democrats and Republicans, are reduced to being coyotes, frantically busing migrants somewhere else before they can be overwhelmed. Migrant busing, like bailing water from a hole in the boat into another part of the boat, is no solution, but it slows the rate at which any individual city or state takes on water, while opening up a civil war over migration.

Borders are more than just walls: they maintain the dignity and unity of a nation.

When the federal government ceases to protect the borders, every state, every city and every community realizes that they are on their own and only they can protect themselves.

That is what is going on now.

Open borders makes Texas, Arizona and Colorado into enemies of New York City, Chicago and D.C., it sets New York City at war with Canada and Florida. Without borders there are no United States: only divided states in the throes of a covert busing civil war waged with bus tickets and chartered flights while the enemy remorselessly advances across the border in the millions.

The only way to end the civil war of buses and planes is to restore our borders.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.

Sunday, February 19, 2023

Unless We Abandon Globalism, China Will Win

By On February 19, 2023
Chinese spy balloons have briefly captured the nation’s imagination, but they’re just another in a series of surveillance layers that begins with satellites and ends with phone apps. The spy balloons seem odd, but they reveal the thoroughness and dedication of Beijing’s data hounds who are not satisfied with hacking us, embedding thousands of spies in our universities and tech firms, but want that added edge with slow-motion spying on our bases and defenses.

The balloon may seem silly but it reveals a rigorous mindset that ought to be frightening.

China’s economic warfare hollowed out our economy in the same dedicated fashion, aiming low to aim high, capturing our industries from the bottom so that we laughed at all the ‘Made in China’ junk and we went on laughing until it became impossible to find anything else. No aspect of our economy was too unimportant to outsource and no angle was overlooked. Our retail sector now consists of buying American brands that are made in China from Chinese third party sellers on Amazon. Soon we’ll be buying Chinese brands on Chinese platforms like Alibaba.

The same obsessive attention to detail that served China so well in its economic war is at play in its war plans. Having lost an economic war to China, we’re sleepwalking into a military defeat.

Even on our end, we’ve lost war games against China over and over again.

“The trend in our war games was not just that we were losing, but we were losing faster,” Air Force Lt. Gen. S. Clinton Hinote stated. We’re losing because we have no serious plan to win and that’s because we don’t really believe that there will be a war and so we don’t need to.

China is serious. We’re not. Xi lives in a zero-sum world. So does the rest of the Communist regime. They believe that for them to win, we have to lose. They’d rather not fight a war and they would prefer that we decline into oblivion while selling our souls for consumer gadgets, but they are seriously preparing to fight and win a battle that will establish them as the world power.

Our leaders speak of China as being a “competitor” rather than an enemy. That’s a concession on our end, but China has no intention of merely competing, it wants to end the competition.

We don’t. And that’s why we’re setting ourselves up for defeat.

Despite the defeatism in some circles, China is not naturally superior to us. But, like most of our opponents, it’s nationalistic while we have decayed into a globalist apathy that claims to care about the world, but without any particular attachment to any part of it including our own.

China knew that it could stomp over Hong Kong and that it would excite no more opposition from most of the western world and its leaders than the manifold human rights abuses all over the world. Similarly, it anticipates that if it can manage to take Taiwan, the story will vanish in the news cycle the way that fighting in dozens of other places in the world have.

In the globalist paradigm, everything matters and so nothing matters. China’s human rights abuses deserve no more and no less attention than those in Africa, the Middle East, or the rest of Asia. Untethered from national interests, we have come to view China’s advance through the dispassionate lens of human rights activism, outraged over everything and dedicated to nothing.

Globalism seduced us into handing out pieces of our economy to any nation willing to take it on the disproven theory that binding nations together through collective economic interests would end war and usher in a collective humanity, a European Union, a North American Union, a United States of Africa, a New Middle East, an Asian Federation, and finally a United Earth.

“No two countries that both have a McDonald’s have ever fought a war against each other,” Thomas Friedman idiotically argued in his paean to globalization, ‘The World Is Flat’. “No two countries that are both part of a major global supply chain, like Dell’s, will ever fight a war against each other as long as they are both part of the same global supply chain.”

Someone forgot to tell Russia and Ukraine.

America’s Cold War diplomatic strategy, carved out by FDR and Truman administration holdovers, hinged on a multilateralism built around the UN and international organizations, that at times suspiciously resembled a mirror image of the USSR, to avert a world war. The Soviet Union easily infiltrated and took over the multilateral organizations, beginning with the UN, and built alliances with third world nations that kept free western nations on the diplomatic defense.

Every Republican administration until Reagan put all of its efforts into maintaining this house of cards as the only way to avert the horrors of nuclear war. The more domestic propagandists terrified us with nuclear bombs falling on our cities while children were taught to cower under desks (not in the hopes of saving their lives, but of terrifying their parents into clamoring for a diplomatic solution), the more we turned to the globalism that was slowly destroying us.

And then the Soviet Union fell.

Having learned nothing, or perhaps everything, the Clinton administration made globalism into the axis of our foreign policy. The world was divided between progressive regimes, abiding by international law and institutions, and reactionary ones opposed to the international order. Instead of returning to our national interests, we put our military at the disposal of the UN, we fought to bring democracy to countries united only by the democratic desire to kill all infidels.

Biden complained that China violated “international law” by flying spy balloons over our territory. China responded by accusing us of violating its territory. This tedious tit-for-tat legal wrangling, so familiar from the Cold War, is also entirely besides the point. Do we object to China spying on us on the grounds of international law or national interest? Anti-American leftists and a few rightists excel at pointing out where America has violated international law. But nations that prioritize their interests view violations of international law as strategic, not moral. We shouldn’t care that China violated international law, but we should care that it violated our territory. And that it did so as part of a larger program to spy on us in order to military defeat us.

To globalists, this is a minor matter. A war between China and America is to be avoided not because they care about America, but because all wars are bad as a matter of principle. They interfere with the free flow of commerce, raise ocean temperatures and teach little boys warlike behavior. But as Americans, China’s military and economic threat to us should be foremost.

The myth of international law is dying a slow death in Ukraine. But it’s died many times before, in two world wars and countless massacres, wars and genocides since, especially in Africa. The international conclaves of “people of goodwill” have accomplished nothing except to build lifetime careers bemoaning the millions of deaths that they have utterly failed to prevent while claiming that those track records of failure somehow endow them with moral authority.

Moral authority cannot be vested in multilateral institutions, only national ones because only nations can be animated by a clear and defining sense of right and wrong rooted in their cultures that they implement by risking the lives of their people. That doesn’t mean that nations are necessarily right, either always or at all, but, unlike globalist ones, they are meaningful.

Globalism claims to represent everyone while representing no one. Its ambitions are as vast in scope as they are empty. Its world government of abstractions commands the loyalty of no one even while basing everything discredited theories that have never worked in the real world.

China’s ambitions are equally global, but it is not globalist. It has a clear plan to expand its territories locally and its economic empire globally. The only way we can even begin to fight it is by making the vital nationalistic calculation that we must be at the epicenter of our interests. China is not a threat to the international order, but to us, and it has effectively used the international order to weaken us, bleeding our economy and shackling our military operations.

No one wants a war with China, but, as WWII showed us, the surest way to stumble into one is to pompously proclaim the dogma of international law that we have no intention of defending, while having no notion of how to deal with an enemy that isn’t seeking a diplomatic solution.

England and France were convinced until the last minute that Hitler wanted a diplomatic solution. The FDR administration believed that the Japanese diplomats were there to negotiate in good faith until the bombs fell from the sky on Pearl Harbor. China’s attack, if it comes, will be equally sudden, ruthless and decisive unless we wake up from our daze and deal with reality.

(If COVID was deliberately released from a lab, it was a mere underpowered trial run.)

America’s leaders, Democrats and Republicans, still live in a globalist fantasy in which most issues can be worked out across conference tables, and in the worst case scenario, sanctions can be used to bring recalcitrant regimes to the table. North Korea, Iran and now the Ukraine war have taught them nothing. The globalist fallacy is that everyone wants to be globalists.

They don’t. Instead, serious nations want to be global world powers.

International law was created to bind us to be reactive, to appease and to bribe other nations to join us in the globalist utopia. As a result we have lost our edge, betrayed our allies, and put ourselves on a path to defeat. If we are going to confront China and avoid a war, we need to take a leaf from its playbook and remember the lessons of our own history. Weakness and empty rhetoric impress no one. America should be strong and silent. We should let our actions speak louder than words, make few threats, but demonstrate that we would win any war.

China, its goods and services, its companies and its scientists, should have no place in this country. The entire question of being open to Chinese commerce should not even be considered until the day that China is willing to open its borders to us the way that we have to it. Our enemies have clearly shown us what we have forgotten: a military rides on the economy.

We have a limited window in which China has out-competed us economically, but not militarily, unless we shift that balance of power soon, then we will be stuck in a weaker position. And we will need to retreat from Asia entirely while trying to maintain what’s left of our economy. By then, there will be negotiations, not over the status of Taiwan, but the status of Hawaii.

Either we will shed globalism and rediscover our national interests or, like much of Europe, the question of national interests will become irrelevant because we will have limited scope for asserting them. We will retreat into globalism, not to restrain our strength, but to protect our weakness, and then we will be a few generations away from total national extinction.

It’s not too late, but if we refuse to remember what makes nations great, it will be.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.

Thursday, February 16, 2023

After Biden Sent $1B to PLO, Israeli Deaths Rose 900%

By On February 16, 2023
When Secretary of State Blinken met with PLO leader Mahmoud Abbas, he boasted of the over billion dollars in aid that the Biden administration had programmed for the terrorist territories.

That aid has come with a very heavy price.

In Feb 2019, President Trump’s total cutoff of aid became official. That year, 10 Israelis or people in Israeli controlled areas were killed in stabbings, shootings, rocket and other attacks, down from 12 the previous year, and 15 in 2017, and 16 in 2016.

In 2020 however only three Israelis were killed.

These numbers reflected the diminished capacity of the Islamic terrorists. The reduction in numbers was not due to the pandemic. 2020 still saw attacks, including firebombings, rocket launches and stabbings, but the success and lethality rates for these attacks were lower.

The numbers turned around dramatically once again in 2021.

In April 2021, the Biden administration restored aid to the PLO. Terror incidents, reflecting attack attempts, shot up sharply from 91 in February and 89 in March to 130 in April.

By May, major fighting resumed with 13 Israelis, including two children, killed.

By the time the year was over, 17 people in Israeli areas had been killed. The over 400% increase in deaths was only the beginning. In 2022, 31 Israelis or people in Israeli areas were killed, up from only 3 in 2020, for a massive 900% increase in casualties since the restoration of foreign aid to the terrorists. This was the worst death toll since 2015 under Obama.

But in January and the first half of February of 2023, 10 Israelis have already been killed, including a 6-year-old boy and an 8-year-old boy.

Three times as many have been killed in a month and a half of 2023 as in all of 2020. That’s a 233% increase over 2020 in just a fraction of a year, but it’s also a marked month-to-month escalation from 2022 which featured no attacks at all in January or February. More people have already been killed by terrorists in 2023 than through most of March in 2022.

What a difference a billion dollars makes.

While the media has tried to portray the terrorism as “lone wolf” attacks, they’re crowdsourced violence of the kind that Al Qaeda and ISIS helped innovate. But the PLO’s version is unique through its ‘Pay-to-Slay’ program which rewards terrorists, regardless of their formal affiliation, including ISIS and Hamas members, with salaries and payments for their families.

Terrorists are paid based on the length of their prison sentence. That means successful killers can earn $2,000 to $3,000 a month in a part of the world where the average salary is around $700 a month. It’s five times more profitable to be a terrorist than a teacher.

The Palestinian Authority calls for the murder of Jews, praises it and then rewards it.

Muhammad Al-Lahham of the Fatah Revolutionary Council, which runs the political movement behind the terrorists of the Palestinian Authority, was caught on video praising the “patriotic conscience” of a terrorist who had killed a rabbi taking his 2-year-old son for a walk in 2022.

The Trump administration cut off aid to the PLO’s Palestinian Authority and Congress passed the Taylor Force Act banning funds from going to finance Pay-to-Slay.

Throughout all this, PLO leadership have been consistent in refusing to stop financing terrorism.

“We will neither reduce nor prevent [payment] of allowances to the families of martyrs, prisoners and released prisoners, as some seek, and if we had only a single penny left, we would pay it to families of the martyrs and prisoners,” Abbas had bragged. By “martyrs”, he meant those Islamic terrorists who were killed while carrying out terrorist attacks.

Despite this, the Biden administration had restored aid and rebuilt diplomatic relations. Biden and Blinken have met with Abbas. And while they have attacked Israel over everything from letting Jews pray on the Temple Mount (due to Jewish prayers offending Muslim sensibilities) to democratic judicial reform that will limit the unilateral authority of pro-terrorist judges, Biden and Blinken have had nothing to say to the terrorists about the program funding the murder of Jews.

America First Legal, under Stephen Miller, filed suit against the Biden administration on behalf of the parents of Taylor Force: a non-Jewish Afghanistan war vet murdered in Jerusalem.

“The Biden Administration is well aware that the PA pays Palestinian terrorists to injure or kill innocent Americans and Israelis in Israel. Yet, in blatant violation of the Taylor Force Act, a federal law that prohibits the government from sending American taxpayer dollars to the PA until it stops supporting terrorism, President Biden and Secretary of State Blinken have resumed payments to the PA after the Trump Administration had stopped these payments in compliance with the Taylor Force Act,” America First Legal declared..

“The Taylor Force Act, named after our son, was passed by Congress and signed by President Trump to stop this Pay to Slay. Yet the Biden Administration has resumed payments to the PA notwithstanding its Pay to Slay program,” Stuart Force, Taylor’s father, said.

The Biden administration’s decision to fund the Palestinian Authority has consequences beyond Israel. Islamic terrorism is a global threat and has been a reliable killer of Americans abroad.

“Robbi and I call upon President Biden to stop sending fungible taxpayer dollars to the PA that will end up funding terrorism,” Stuart Force appealed.

And the latest wave of violence shows just how ‘fungible’ that money is.

The massive uptick in successful terrorist attacks is not a coincidence. The numbers become more significant when we distinguish between so-called “lone wolf” attacks which are most directly impacted by ‘Pay-to-Slay’ and rocket attacks by other terrorist groups. 14 people were killed in direct terrorist attacks in 2018. That number dropped to 5 in 2019, the year Trump cut off aid to the PLO. By 2020, it fell to 3, in 2021, the year Biden restored aid, it rose to 4 and then shot up to 32 in 2022 reflecting the ‘slow burn’ effect of fungible aid money being taken away and then restored within a government bureaucracy even if it’s run by and for terrorists.

As the Biden administration continues pumping money into the terrorist entities occupying parts of Israel, the violence is drastically increasing. 2023 is already on track to top 2022 which had the worst numbers since 2015. The level of Islamic terrorism is returning to that of the Obama administration and that means that we can expect an even higher death toll in Israel.

The billion dollars in aid is a factor, but an even bigger factor is that the Biden administration, like its Democrat predecessor, has made no secret of its support for the Palestinian Authority. And the Biden administration has gone even further with its diplomatic support for the PLO regime and its pressure on Israel. The latest murders are the work of a terrorist group that knows that Washington D.C. has its back and will intervene to protect it from Israel.

The Biden administration’s decision to appoint Hady Amr, an open supporter of Islamic terrorism and opponent of the Jewish State, as its key liaison to the PLO, who was inspired by the intifada, has consequences, and dead bodies in Jerusalem are among the most obvious ones.

Islamic terrorism runs on money and foreign support. The Biden administration has provided both. The Palestinian Authority spends hundreds of millions of dollars a year on Pay-to-Slay.

The pipeline of terror may end with a 6-year-old boy lying dead on a Jerusalem street but it begins with cash coming out of Washington D.C. The attacks of September 11 cost Al Qaeda about half a million dollars. The cost to the PLO of killing that little boy, his brother and a newly married man going to spend the Sabbath with his wife’s family probably comes out to about $30,000 a year. Or $10,000 per dead Jewish person. That’s a fraction of the millions of dollars in foreign aid which could be used to finance hundreds and thousands of more murders of Jews.

$10,000 to kill a six-year-old boy, another $10,000 to kill his 8-year-old brother. Thanks to the financiers of murdering Jews in the Biden administration, the terrorists have the cash.

And we’re the ones providing it.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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