Obama’s Dilemma: Heavy Leadership Responsibility – Light Leadership Aptitude

Of Thee I Sing 1776

Obama’s Dilemma: Heavy Leadership Responsibility – Light Leadership Aptitude

by Of Thee I Sing 1776

The president’s recent disappointing oval office speech elicited a chorus of criticism from across the political spectrum.  For some reason the speech seems to have put a spotlight on the president as a leader, whereas other misjudgments in which he was directly involved in making policy had not.  The oil spill, which was certainly no fault of Mr. Obama, seems to have finally caused the public and many of his cheerleaders among the pundits to focus on the president’s substance and not his style.  That has been the unspoken, elephant-in- the-room, concern throughout his presidency, his aptitude for leadership.  We are reminded of the lead-in lyrics to the signature song Ethel Merman belts out in Gypsy… Curtain up…light the lights…you either got it…or you ain’t.”

obamamirror-1

President Obama seems to have the curtain up, light the lights part down pat.  The dramatic campaign and convention stage sets, his world photo-op tours, his big oval-office backdrop to his little oval-office speech, and his ever-masterful use of the teleprompter have all produced a “strike-up-the-band” expectation whenever and wherever he appears. It’s the “you either got it, or you ain’t” part that seems finally to have focused the public on the president’s aptitude for leadership.

The befouling glob that threatens hundreds of miles of coast or, as Peggy Noonan put it recently so aptly in the Wall Street Journal, “the monster from under the sea,” seems to be a metaphor for the president’s inability to shape the world as he wants it to be.  Speeches are not a substitute for coherent policy.  The president, with the entire world watching his prime time speech, essentially punted.  He pulled from the presidential duck-and-cover arsenal the time-tested, yawn producer of presidents bereft of solutions to all manner of problems…the formation of a new blue-ribbon commission.  This was the cornerstone of his “battle plan” to face down the “siege” of big oil’s attack on our Gulf coast.

There is nothing more to be said about the quality of Mr. Obama’s oval-office speech debut.  It seems as if all the commentators from Chris Mathews, Keith Olberman and Jon Stewart on the left, to Mark Steyn, Charles Krauthammer and Karl Rove on the right have already done that.  Besides, there is something much more revealing that is apparent here.  It isn’t about the delivery by the man who gave the speech; it is, rather, about the man who delivered the speech.  The disappointing oval-office moment was more than just a lack of writing skill by some wordsmith presidential speechwriter; it focused the attention of the American people on the man himself and on what they hoped just wasn’t so; an apparent lack of the leadership aptitude which a president must possess if he or she is to succeed.


The evidence of weak leadership skills was there before but it became shrouded in the president’s rock star image. The fact is that there was very little about Barack Obama’s pre-presidential career that suggested any real aptitude for leadership.  There was always plenty of “curtain up, light the lights” but the demonstration of leadership part was always a bit like a clock striking thirteen. That is to say, not quite reassuring.

His career as a legislator in Illinois, while always well hyped, was less than impressive.  His biggest legislative achievement in Illinois seems to be the nearly 130 times he chose to vote “present” rather than “yea” or “nay” on major bills.  And yes, we’ve heard or read the standard excuse for this apparent ambivalence.  “It’s the way things are often done in the Illinois Senate,” we’re told.  But since when has doing things the way they are done in Illinois met the definition of leadership anywhere outside of that state.

Besides, some of the “present” votes then state-Senator Obama chose to cast while in the Illinois legislature are quite revealing, if not troubling.  For example, in 1999 he was faced with a difficult vote, to support a bill that would let some juveniles be tried as adults. Understandably, many African-Americans were opposed to the bill.  On the other hand, Mr. Obama was trying to hone an image of a tough-on crime candidate. It was a difficult political call for him; so, he voted “present.”

According to the New York Times, on at least 36 occasions state-Senator Obama was either the only state senator to vote “present” or was part of a group of six or fewer to vote that way.  Politically, the option to vote “present” provides a certain amount of cover. It is a way for the faint of heart, in effect, to say, “I don’t particularly like this bill, but I don’t want to take the political risk of taking a stand.”

The juvenile crime bill was to allow offenders as young as 15 to be prosecuted as adults if charged with committing a crime with a firearm on, or near, schools. Both houses passed the measure handily. State-Senator Obama justified his “present” vote by opining there was no proof that increasing penalties for young offenders reduced crime. Mr. Obama’s aides said he was more concerned about whether the bill would be effective rather than with its political consequences.  They did not explain, however, why he did not just vote “no”.

There were other “present” votes, in which part-time law-lecturer Obama, according to the New York Times, said he had concerns about the constitutionality or effectiveness of some provisions. Among those, Mr. Obama did not vote “yea” or “nay” on a bill that would allow certain victims of sex crimes to petition judges to seal court records relating to their cases. He also voted “present” on a bill to impose stricter standards for evidence a judge is permitted to consider in imposing a criminal sentence.

On the sex crime bill, Mr. Obama cast the lone “present” vote in a 58-to-0 vote.  When it appeared that this vote might become an issue in the presidential race Mr. Obama’s campaign said he believed that the bill violated the First Amendment. The bill had passed 112-0-0 in the Illinois House and 58-0-1 in the state Senate.  Again, why didn’t he just vote, “no”?

In 2000, Mr. Obama was one of two senators who voted present on a bill on whether facts not presented to a jury could later be the basis for increasing an offender’s sentence beyond the ordinary maximum. The bill sailed through both chambers. Out of 174 votes cast in the House and Senate, two were against and two were “present”, including Mr. Obama’s.  Mr. Obama’s campaign said he voted present to register his dissatisfaction with how the bill was put together. He believed (hold on to your hat) the bill was rushed to the floor and that lawmakers were deprived of time to consider it.  Oddly, this hasn’t been a problem for the president with bills passed in the House and Senate of the United States.

The Times also reported that Mr. Obama was the sole “present” vote on a bill that easily passed the Illinois Senate that would require teaching respect for others in schools. He also voted “present” on a measure to prohibit sex-related shops from opening near schools or places of worship, which ultimately did not pass the Illinois Senate.  In both of those cases, his campaign said (hold on to your hat again) he was trying to avoid mandates on local authorities.  This from, now, President Obama, who has gone on, arguably, to impose the greatest funded and unfunded mandates on local authorities in the nation’s history.

But enough of ancient history.  Fast forward to the centerpiece of his first year in office, health-care reform.  Many on the left, and even some on the right, suggest that this massive legislative “achievement” is proof that President Obama is a formidable leader. We beg to differ.  It may, indeed, prove that Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority leader Harry Reid can effectively lead their party’s foot soldiers over any cliff they choose, but it really doesn’t say much about President Obama’s leadership aptitude.  Quite the opposite.   Apparently misreading the lessons of President Clinton’s terribly misdirected attempt at health-care reform, President Obama delegated the entire effort to Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid.  He sat by as they cobbled together (in his name) the horrific 2700-page health-care reform legislation that a substantial majority of the people consistently said they did not want and consistently continue to say they now want repealed and which a third of the states are now fighting to stop in federal court. Real leadership of the type he promised, but apparently cannot deliver, would have brought both sides together instead of putting the nation through some of the worst acrimony we can ever remember. 

The curtains up…light the lights first-day-in-office announcement that the prison housing terrorists at Guantanamo Bay would be closed within a year, was an early lesson that Ruffles and Flourishes without leadership aptitude is, well, just music.  The world apology tour for American foreign policy under the Bush Administration, the Cairo speech, the presidential outstretched hand to our adversaries and the long-lapsed ultimatum for a reciprocal handshake in return, the puzzling back of the hand treatment to Britain, our closest friend since the end of World War II, the insulting treatment of our friends such as South Korea, Columbia, Honduras, and Israel, and the skyrocketing spending and the attendant ever-mounting deficits all call into question the aptitude for leadership that prevails (or is absent) at the White House.

Les Gelb wrote of Obama, “He is so self-confident that he believes he can make decisions on the most complicated of issues after only hours of discussion.  Strategic decisions go well beyond being smart, which Obama certainly is.  They must be based on experience that discerns what works, what doesn’t — and why.  This requires experienced staffing, which Obama and his top appointees simply do not seem to have.”  Mr. Obama is beginning to look to more and more of the people who were dazzled by his meteoric rise and who were looking for the political equivalent of a messiah, as a growing disappointment.  It turns out that Mr. Obama cannot by his charm, his gift-of-gab, his oratorical skills and his considerable intelligence will into reality policies that the people won’t accept and that many across the political spectrum here and abroad seriously question.     

Which brings us full circle back to where we began… the growing fiasco that continues to assault the gulf coast.  “What could the President have done to avoid the blowout at the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform?” the Administration’s defenders indignantly ask.  Nothing.  But that is the wrong question.  The more telling question would be “what could the President have done to mitigate the damage?”  And the answer to that seems to be, “plenty.”

He had the authority to waive the ridiculous and long-outdated, protectionist Jones Act that would have allowed significant expertise and siphoning capacity to be on location in the Gulf weeks ago mitigating the damage that now seems unstoppable.  But, so as not to offend labor unions or domestic shipping interests, he turned down the offers.  He could have immediately authorized Governor Bobby Jindal to begin deploying barriers parallel to the gulf coast as the governor was begging for permission to do (and for which he was still begging last week).  He could, and should, have immediately designated the most operationally competent person he could find to take charge of containment operations and to report progress to him on a daily basis.

Instead, seven weeks into this debacle, when discussing why safety precautions were not in place, Mr. Obama assured the American people “that he wants to know why.”  Of course, the answer he will soon provide is quite predictable since we have heard it many times before.  The problem, we will be told, rests with the previous Administration.  Blaming Bush, or industry or political opposition seems to be his answer for every problem.  “I inherited this mess,” he often tells us. In short, the President is not providing the leadership one would expect from a chief executive running the country.  Instead, he has responded as one would expect from a chief executive running a think tank.

Enough curtain up…light the lights.  The curtain has been up and the lights have been lighted since January 20th, 2009.  Show us you got it, Mr. President. Not that you ain’t.

By Hal Gershowitz and Stephen Porter 

Reward: $100,000 for Full ‘JournoList’ Archive; Source Fully Protected

Reward: $100,000 for Full ‘JournoList’ Archive; Source Fully Protected

by Andrew Breitbart

I’ve had $100,000 burning in my pocket for the last three months and I’d really like to spend it on a worthy cause. So how about this: in the interests of journalistic transparency, and to offer the American public a unique insight in the workings of the Democrat-Media Complex, I’m offering $100,000 for the full “JournoList” archive, source fully protected. Now there’s an offer somebody can’t refuse.

liberal media bias

Yes, the mainstream media that came together to play up the false allegations that the “N-Word” was hurled 15 times by Tea Party participants at the Congressional Black Caucus outside the Capitol the day before the “Obamacare” vote, is the same MSM that colluded to make sure the American public accepted the smear, and refused to show the exculpatory videos that disproved the incendiary charges of Tea Party racism.

Ezra Klein’s “JournoList 400” is the epitome of progressive and liberal collusion that conservatives, Tea Partiers, moderates and many independents have long suspected and feared exists at the heart of contemporary American political journalism. Now that collusion has been exposed when one of the weakest links in that cabal, Dave Weigel, was outed. Weigel was, in all likelihood, exposed because – to whoever the rat was who leaked his emails — he wasn’t liberal enough.

When the “N-word” controversy turned out to be an almost certain falsehood, Weigel had the professional courage to come out against 399 of his “JournoList” peers when he wrote:

I think we’ve seen a paradigm shift, and that the March 20 story will be remembered by conservatives as evidence of how the media accepts attacks on conservatives without due diligence.

Weigel also had the courage to issue a correction and a mea culpa when his reporting was used as a weapon by the unscrupulous Max Blumenthal to falsely smear James O’Keefe as a “racist organizer” of a white nationalist conference. Weigel eventually stepped up and set the record straight when he found out he was falsely named as a witness to the story.

Why was he chosen for outing among 400 “JournoList” participants? I can think of few liberal journalists who have been more fair than Weigel. And if I think that, imagine what true partisans on the left feel about his erratic and ideologically unpredictable output?

Weigel’s career at the Washington Post was assassinated for his crimes against conformity. Try as he might, as a left-leaning journalist he didn’t conform enough. When conservatives jumped on his exposure, he cited defending me as a mitigating alibi. Defending me publicly is a hangable offense in them thar liberal hills!

But Dave Weigel is not the story. The “JournoList” is the story: who was on it and which positions of journalistic power and authority do they hold? Now that the nature and the scope of the list has been exposed, I think the public has a right to know who shapes the big media narratives and how.

Ezra Klein

Dave Weigel is a portal into the dark world of hardcore liberal bias in the media. This opening gives us a deeper insight into the insidious relationship between liberal think tanks, academics and their mouthpieces in the media.

As we already uncovered in our expose on the “Cry Wolf” project, members of academia and think tanks are actively working to form the narrative used by the press to thwart conservative messages. Like a ventriloquist’s dummy, the reporters on the listserv mimicked the talking points invented and agreed upon by the intellectuals who were invited to the virtual cocktail party that was Klein’s “JournoList.”

And let us not forget the participation of Media Matters in the larger picture of intimidation and mockery for any reporter, like Weigel, who dares stray from the one acceptable liberal narrative in the media. Flying its false flag as a “media watchdog,” the $10 million-or-so per year agitprop command center creates and promotes a system of conformity in which it relentlessly attacks anyone who strays from the Soros-funded party orthodoxy.

The deluge of intimidation showered upon the occasional heretic by Media Matters represent another distinct layer in the media infrastructure that ensures true believer liberals are overrepresented and conservatives had better watch their step.

The fact that 400 journalists did not recognize how wrong their collusion, however informal, was shows an enormous ethical blind spot toward the pretense of impartiality. As journalists actively participated in an online brainstorming session on how best to spin stories in favor of one party against another, they continued to cash their paychecks from their employers under the impression that they would report, not spin the agreed-upon “news” on behalf of their “JournoList” peers.

The American people, at least half of whom are the objects of scorn of this group of 400, deserve to know who was colluding against them so that in the future they can better understand how the once-objective media has come to be so corrupted and despised.

We want the list of journalists that comprised the 400 members of the “JournoList” and we want the contents of the listserv. Why should Weigel be the only person exposed and humiliated?

I therefore offer the sum of $100,000 to the person who provides the full “JournoList” archive. We will protect that person’s privacy and identity forever. No one will ever know who became $100,000 richer – and did the right thing, morally and ethically — by shining the light of truth on this seamy underworld of the media.

$100,000 is not a lot to spend on the Holy Grail of media bias when there is a country to save.

Extremist Conference in Chicago

Extremist Conference in Chicago

Posted By Ryan Mauro On June 30, 2010 @ 12:09 am In FrontPage | 6 Comments

 

Hizb ut-Tahrir [1], an Islamic extremist group working for uniting the world under Sharia law, is scheduled to hold its second annual conference [2] on July 11 at the Chicago Marriott Oak Brook. The theme of the event is, “Emerging World Order: How the Khilafah Will Shape the World.” The organization has chosen the home of President Obama, the leader of the free world, to pursue its anti-democratic agenda by taking advantage of the freedoms it seeks to vanquish.

“HT recruiters use religious language to pull the confused Muslim youth to their side in an effort to undermine American democracy. The danger of this conference is that it legitimizes HT as a mainstream organization and allows it to further spread its hate-filled message that divides Muslims and non-Muslims,” Zeyno Baran, a Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute, told FrontPage.

Hizb ut-Tahrir [3] has accurately been described [4] as “a conveyor belt to terror” by Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, the moderate Muslim leader of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy [5]. Although the group condemns terrorism and doesn’t publicly support violence, several of its members have gone on to become major terrorists, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

The group may not embrace the tactics of Al-Qaeda but their goals are the same. Hizb ut-Tahrir’s first conference in the U.S. was held [6] last year in Chicago and was titled, “The Fall of Capitalism & the Rise of Islam.” It was attended by between five and six hundred people, and one speaker openly called for [7] throwing out the U.S. Constitution and putting Sharia law in its place.

Although Hizb ut-Tahrir has condemned the 9/11 attacks and has been criticized by Al-Qaeda, this does not make them moderate. They support violent jihad overseas, praising Palestinian suicide bombers as “martyrs,” calling for the destruction of Israel, and supporting those fighting non-Muslim soldiers in Muslim lands. Footage has been found [8] of the group’s leaders supporting militants in Kashmir and Chechnya and leaflets have called on Muslims to fight Coalition forces in Iraq.

Hizb ut-Tahrir does not openly support terrorist attacks in Europe, but its top official in the United Kingdom refused to condemn the 2005 London bombings. He said [9] that he’d only “condemn what happened in London only after there is the promise from Western leaders to condemn what they have done in Falluja and other parts of Iraq and in Afghanistan.” A book by one former leader says [10] that non-Islamic government leaders should “either retract or be killed.” The group’s Facebook page links [11] to a sermon by Anwar al-Awlaki, a high-level Al-Qaeda member believed to have been tied to the Fort Hood shooting, the Christmas Day underwear bomb plot, and actively planning further attacks.

The group is much less restrained outside of the United States. In Indonesia, where the group has held well-attended conferences, they are demanding [12] the stoning and caning celebrities who appear in sex tapes and want regulation to bring the Internet into accordance with Islam. The group calls [13] upon those in power to “break down the total current system and replace it with Islamic sharia.” The HUT coordinator of a protest that numbered about 1,000 said that those that don’t perform abstinence should be publicly caned 100 times and adulterers should be stoned to death. The organization’s Facebook also links to an article [14] attributed to their Pakistani branch calling on the Pakistani army to aim its nuclear weapons at Israel and overthrow the government so a caliphate can be created that will “remove the Jewish state.”

Zeyno Baran told FrontPage that Hizb ut-Tahrir doesn’t need a huge level of support in order to promote its ideology.

“HT does not need mass support–it aims to have support from people who are established and with influence in their communities, such as doctors, engineers, politicians etc.,” she said. “Moreover, many of HT’s ideas…have over time become mainstream Islamist ideas.”

Hizb ut-Tahrir has a three-stage plan [15] to implement Sharia law. They first build a branch in the targeted country. They then begin an outreach effort to try to recruit as many Muslims as possible. Once a base of support is created, they begin pushing for the implementation of Sharia law. Contrary to Al-Qaeda, HUT moves incrementally and takes into account its weaknesses. The late founder of the group called for building a single country to encompass all Muslims which would then be able to spread its version of Islam to the non-Muslim world.

The text contained in a journal that used to be published by HUT members reinforces [15] these points. The December 1995 issue says that “Jihad is impossible…without an organized military machine….The Islamic state must form an army capable of offensive attacks. The army is an integral part of delivering the message of Islam to the world.” Another issue says Muslims must “annex all the Islamic wilayah (provinces) stretching from Europe to China. Let us then see the U.S. try to meddle in our affairs.” The goal of HUT is to build and expand a state and become stronger until it can conquer further. This pragmatic mindset is why HUT has made the decision not to promote violence in the United States and to moderate its language and behavior in the West.

Hizb ut-Tahrir is a sophisticated group with a long-term, phased approach towards achieving its goals. The attendance of their last conference by 400-500 Muslims show they are making some inroads into the Muslim community. In terms of winning converts and influence, they seem to be doing a better job than Al-Qaeda. The residents of Illinois need to be aware that their city of Chicago is being used as a platform by Islamic extremists to more efficiently accomplish what Al-Qaeda has been unable to. They are at the forefront of a battle to bring Sharia law to the United States.

This article was sponsored by Stand Up America. [16]

Union Official: Obama used me as middleman to speak to Blago

Union Official: Obama used me as middleman to speak to Blago

June 29th, 2010

It seems as if Obama’s protestations that he was not involved with the Blagojevich nominations are turning out to be a little shaky.

Revealed today in the Chicago Sun Times:

“Tom, this is Barack, give me a call,” the soon-to-be President-Elect said on the message.

After Balanoff sent word through an Obama aide to call him back, Obama returned his call later that night.

“Tom, i want to talk to you with regard to the Senate seat,” Obama told him.

Balanoff said Obama said he had two criteria: someone who was good for the citizens of Illinois and could be elected in 2010.
Obama said he wasn’t publicly coming out in support of anyone but he believed Valerie Jarrett would fit the bill.
“I would much prefer she (remain in the White House) but she does want to be Senator and she does meet those two criteria,” Balanoff said Obama told him. “I said: ‘thank you, I’m going to reach out to Gov. Blagojevich.”

According to the article Balanoff met with Blagojevich 5 days later to recommend Valerie Jarrett, Obama’s choice.

Not exactly corruption, but it does fly in the face of Obama’s claims that he had no contact with Blagojevich. I call that a lie.

W.H. quiet on Obama-Blago link

W.H. quiet on Obama-Blago link

June 29th, 2010

By GLENN THRUSH & JONATHAN ALLEN, Politico

The White House was mum Tuesday after a union leader testified that Barack Obama personally asked him to approach then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich about appointing confidant Valerie Jarrett to his Illinois Senate seat – testimony Republicans say clearly contradicts the Obama team’s version of events.

In testimony at Blagojevich’s federal corruption trial, Tom Balanoff said Obama — speaking a day before his Nov. 4, 2008 triumph in the presidential election – said that Jarrett wanted the job and was qualified, although he wanted her to join him in the White House.

Defense lawyers – and now the GOP – have claimed that Balanoff’s version of events conflicts with Obama transition team lawyer Greg Craig’s report on his investigation into contacts between Obama’s inner circle and Blagojevich’s team.

In a memo to the then-president-elect and a subsequent conference call with reporters on Dec. 23, 2008, Craig, who later served briefly as White House counsel, asserted that “The President-Elect had no contact or communication with Governor Blagojevich or members of his staff about the Senate seat.”

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Why Obamanomics Has Failed

Why Obamanomics Has Failed

June 30th, 2010

By ALLAN H. MELTZER, The Wall Street Journal

The administration’s stimulus program has failed. Growth is slow and unemployment remains high. The president, his friends and advisers talk endlessly about the circumstances they inherited as a way of avoiding responsibility for the 18 months for which they are responsible.

But they want new stimulus measures—which is convincing evidence that they too recognize that the earlier measures failed. And so the U.S. was odd-man out at the G-20 meeting over the weekend, continuing to call for more government spending in the face of European resistance.

The contrast with President Reagan’s antirecession and pro-growth measures in 1981 is striking. Reagan reduced marginal and corporate tax rates and slowed the growth of nondefense spending. Recovery began about a year later. After 18 months, the economy grew more than 9% and it continued to expand above trend rates.

Two overarching reasons explain the failure of Obamanomics. First, administration economists and their outside supporters neglected the longer-term costs and consequences of their actions. Second, the administration and Congress have through their deeds and words heightened uncertainty about the economic future. High uncertainty is the enemy of investment and growth.

Most of the earlier spending was a very short-term response to long-term problems. One piece financed temporary tax cuts. This was a mistake, and ignores the role of expectations in the economy. Economic theory predicts that temporary tax cuts have little effect on spending. Unless tax cuts are expected to last, consumers save the proceeds and pay down debt. Experience with past temporary tax reductions, as in the Carter and first Bush presidencies, confirms this outcome.

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U.S. – Mexican Border is Terrorists’ Moving Sidewalk

U.S. – Mexican Border is Terrorists’ Moving Sidewalk

June 30th, 2010

By Deroy Murdock

 

While Americans march against Arizona’s new restrictions on unlawful immigration, hundreds of illegal aliens from countries awash in Muslim terrorists tiptoe across the U.S.-Mexican frontier.New York, N.Y. – According to the federal Enforcement Integrated Database, 125 individuals were apprehended along the border from fiscal year 2009 through April 20, 2010. These deportable aliens included two Syrians, seven Sudanese, and 17 Iranians, all nationals from the three Islamic countries that the U.S. government officially classifies as state sponsors of terrorism.

Federal authorities also track “special interest countries” from which terrorism could be directed against America. Over the aforementioned period, 99 of those nations’ citizens also were nabbed on the border. They were: two Afghans, five Algerians, 13 Iraqis, 10 Lebanese, 22 Nigerians, 28 Pakistanis, two Saudis, 14 Somalis, and three Yemenis. During FY 2007 and FY 2008, federal officials caught 319 people from these same countries traversing America’s southwest border.

Some such characters were confined in Arizona, which recently adopted a controversial law that lets cops ask the citizenship status of those they suspect of other possible violations. WSB-TV recently publicized an April 15, 2010, “population breakdown” of immigrants detained at a facility in Florence, Ariz. Of the 395 males behind bars, 198 were Mexican, 18 hailed from Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen.

Perhaps these gentlemen simply want to pursue the American dream. Worrisome signs suggest, however, that some may have arrived via blistering, cactus-adorned deserts so they could blow Americans to smithereens.

Texas Border Patrol agents discovered, along with Iranian currency and Islamic prayer rugs, an Arabic clothing patch that reads “martyr” and “way to immortality.” Another shows a jet flying into a skyscraper.

“Members of Hezbollah, the Lebanon-based terrorist organization, have already entered the United States across our southwest border,” declares “A Line in the Sand,” a 2006 report by the House Homeland Security Investigations Subcommittee, then-chaired by Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas).

Even more disturbing are the uninvited terrorists and terror suspects that were arrested after entering America through our permeable underbelly:

– Mahmoud Youssef Kourani pleaded guilty in March 2005 to providing material support to terrorists. First, Kourani secured a visa by bribing a Mexican diplomat in Beirut. He and another Middle Easterner then hired a Mexican guide to escort them into America. Finally, Kourani settled in Dearborn, Michigan’s Lebanese-immigrant community, and raised cash for Hezbollah.

– Miguel Alfonso Salinas was caught in New Mexico near the international border in 2006. As The Washington Examiner reported, one week of FBI interrogation exposed Salinas as an Egyptian named Ayman Sulmane Kamal. Evidently, he remains in federal custody.

– Then-National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell said that in FY 2006 and FY 2007, at least 30 potentially dangerous Iraqis were found trying to penetrate America via Mexico. As McConnell told the El Paso Times: “There are numerous situations where people are alive today because we caught them.”

– The Department of Homeland Security issued an April 14 intelligence alert regarding a possible border-crossing attempt by a Somali named Mohamed Ali. He is a suspected member of Al-Shabaab, a Somali-based al-Qaida ally tied to the deadly attack on American GIs in 1993’s notorious “Blackhawk Down” incident in Mogadishu.

– Captured in Brownsville, Texas, Ahmed Muhammed Dhakane pleaded not guilty on May 14 to federal charges that he “ran a large-scale smuggling enterprise” designed to sneak East Africans through Mexico into Texas, including “several AIAI-affiliated Somalis into the United States.” Al-Ittihad Al-Islami is yet another Muslim-extremist organization.

– Daniel Joseph Maldonado also has Somali ties. He was picked up in Somalia in 2007 during terrorist training. He was returned to Houston for prosecution. As Rice University’s Joan Neuhas Schaan told KHOU-TV: “They had plans for him to come back to the United States and recruit female suicide bombers.”

All this involves only the bad guys who the authorities nailed. Those who have stayed undetected after crossing the border to murder Americans remain, by definition, invisible.

Appeals panel considers whether Obama is even American

Appeals panel considers whether Obama is even American

June 30th, 2010

By Bob Unruh, World Net Daily -

Three judges on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals are beginning to review a case that alleges Barack Obama is not eligible to be president – in fact, he may not even be American.

The federal court case was brought by attorney Mario Apuzzo on behalf of plaintiffs Charles Kerchner and others, and had been dismissed at the district court level.

Arguments earlier had been scheduled for June 29 in the dispute, but a court order recently cancelled the hearing and instead announced the case would be decided based on the merits of the legal briefs submitted by attorneys.

A document from court clerk Marcia Waldron said the case will be decided by Judge Dolores Sloviter, who was appointed by Jimmy Carter; Maryanne Trump Barry, who was appointed by Bill Clinton; and Thomas Hardiman, who was appointed by George W. Bush.

The filings were due on the day the hearing would have been held, but there’s no published timetable for a decision to be released.

The case argues Obama probably is not even a U.S. citizen, much less a “natural born citizen” as required by the U.S. Constitution of the chief executive officer.

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Censors In, Liberty Out

Censors In, Liberty Out

Eileen F. Toplansky

We are learning that Elena Kagan would be quite comfortable subverting the First Amendment’s right to free speech.  In May of this year, activist Nat Hentoff, renowned authority on the First Amendment, sounded the alarm when he wrote that “last September, Kagan, then Obama’s solicitor general was asked to consider the government’s case for limits to corporations’ political speech rights (Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission).  During the oral argument, Chief Justice John Roberts asked Kagan how far the government could censor corporations’ political speech.  Roberts queried, “If you say you are not going to apply (censorship) to a book (about the candidates), what about a pamphlet?”
Kagan, a former Dean of the Harvard Law School replied, “I think a pamphlet would be different.  A pamphlet is pretty classic electioneering.”  So, in her judgment, the government could penalize such corporate speech.
American patriot Thomas Paine, author of the pamphlet “Common Sense,” and the “The Crisis” is turning over in his grave as is Samuel Adams, author of the pamphlet entitled “The Rights of the Colonists.”  The stench emanating from Obama and his cohorts is getting stronger by the day.
Chief Justice Roberts wrote:
“The [Obama] government urges us in this case to uphold a direct prohibition on political speech.  It asks us to embrace a theory of the First Amendment that would allow censorship not only of television and radio broadcasts, but of pamphlets, posters, the Internet, and virtually any other medium that corporations and unions might find useful in expressing their view on matters of public concern.

“Its theory, if accepted, would empower the Government to prohibit newspapers from running editorials or opinion pieces supporting or opposing candidates for office, so long as the newspapers were owned by corporations-as the major ones are.  First Amendment rights could be confined to individuals, [thus] subverting the vibrant public discourse that is at the foundation of our democracy.”

Thus, as Anthony G. Martin has opined, it is clear that the nomination of Elena Kagan to the U.S. Supreme Court is intended to bolster the Obama’s intention to censor anything he chooses.  Obama, the dictator would come full circle.
Why aren’t the journalists up in arms about this?  Don’t they see that this is yet another of Obama’s serial double-crossing strategy? He smooth talks a group, invites them into his lair, and then tears them apart when they are no longer useful to him. What is blinding reporters who cannot perceive the end result of the ill-named Fairness Doctrine, a tactic of Obama who has publicly stated that he wants to suppress and control conservative talk radio, for starters?
In his book entitled Babi Yar: A Document in the Form of a Novel, Anatoli Kuznetsov writes,
“…books are always being burnt.  The library at Alexandria went up in flames, the Inquisition had their bonfires…books were burnt under Stalin; there have been bonfires in the squares under Hitler, and there will be more and more of them burnt.  There are always more people to burn books than to write them…this is the first sign of trouble-if books are burned, that means things are going wrong.  It means that you are surrounded by force, fear and ignorance, that power is in the hands of the barbarians.”
Of course, Mr. Obama, the genteel, would never actually stoop to burning books — yet!
But censorship has always been the prelude to the bonfires.
The fact that a Jewish woman would even consider censorship makes this all the morevile.  She, of all people, should recall “a rule worth remembering:  Wherever hatred against Jews became inflamed, Jewish books or Jews or both were burned.  Such events took place in pagan Rome in the first century of the Common Era, in Christian Spain in the fifteenth century and in Nazi Germany in the twentieth century.
Nine years before the furnaces in Auschwitz and other death camps were lit, Jewish books were consigned to the flames in Germany.  The flames that burned the portrait of Albert Einstein became the signal for the first bonfire.  Jewish history shows that side by side with their books, especially the Talmud, Jews themselves were burned as well.  This occurred in Paris in the thirteenth century, in Rome and in Holland in the sixteenth, in Poland in the eighteenth.  As People of the Book, Jews and their books suffered a common fate.
That Ms. Kagan would give a scintilla of aid to bolster the Obama Administration’s intention to undo the First Amendment is a terrifying attack on American liberties. 
Eileen can be reached at middlemarch18@gmail.com.

Why Islam Will Never Accept the State of Israel

Why Islam Will Never Accept the State of Israel

By Steven Simpson

It is a common belief that the “Arab-Israeli conflict” is a conflict of two peoples fighting over the same piece of land and is therefore one of nationalism. Rarely, if ever, do we hear or read of the religious component to this conflict.
However, if anything, the conflict is more of a “Muslim-Jewish” one than an “Arab-Israeli” one. In other words, the conflict is based on religion — Islam vs. Judaism — cloaked in Arab nationalism vs. Zionism. The fact of the matter is that in every Arab-Israeli war, from 1948 to the present, cries of “jihad,” “Allahu Akbar,” and the bloodcurdling scream of “Idbah al- Yahud” (slaughter the Jews) have resonated amongst even the most secular of Arab leaders, be it Nasser in the 1950s and 1960s or the supposedly “secular” PLO of the 1960s to the present. Indeed, the question must be asked: If this is really a conflict of different nationalisms and not Islamic supremacism, then why is it that virtually no non-Arab Muslim states have full (if any) relations with Israel?
There is a common Arabic slogan that is chanted in the Middle East: “Khaybar, Khaybar! Oh Jews, remember. The armies of Muhammad are returning!” It would be most interesting to know how many people have ever heard what — or more precisely, where — Khaybar is, and what the Arabs mean by such a slogan. A short history of the Jews of Arabia is needed in order to explain this, and why Islam remains so inflexible in its hostile attitude towards Jews and Israel.
Until the founder of Islam, Muhammad ibn Abdallah, proclaimed himself “Messenger of Allah” in the 7th century, Jews and Arabs lived together peacefully in the Arabian Peninsula. Indeed, the Jews — and Judaism — were respected to such an extent that an Arab king converted to Judaism in the 5th century. His name was Dhu Nuwas, and he ruled over the Himyar (present day Yemen) area of the Arabian Peninsula. In fact, it is most likely that the city of Medina (the second-holiest city in Islam) — then called Yathrib — was originally founded by Jews. In any event, at the time of Muhammad’s “calling,” three important Jewish tribes existed in Arabia: Banu Qurayza, Banu Nadir, and Banu Qaynuqa.  
Muhammad was very keen on having the Jews accept him as a prophet to the extent that he charged his followers not to eat pig and to pray in the direction of Jerusalem. However, the Jews apparently were not very keen on Muhammad, his proclamation of himself as a prophet, or his poor knowledge of the Torah (Hebrew Bible). Numerous verbal altercations are recorded in the Qur’an and various Hadiths about these conflicts between the Jewish tribes and Muhammad.
Eventually, the verbal conflicts turned into physical conflicts, and when the Jews outwardly rejected Muhammad as the “final seal of the prophets,” he turned on them with a vengeance. The atrocities that were committed against these tribes are too numerous to cite in a single article, but two tribes, the Qaynuqa and Nadir, were expelled from their villages by Muhammad. It appears that the Qaynuqa left Arabia around 624 A.D. The refugees of the Nadir settled in the village of Khaybar.
In 628 A.D., Muhammad turned on the last Jewish tribe, the Qurayza, claiming that they were in league with Muhammad’s Arab pagan enemies and had “betrayed” him. Muhammad and his army besieged the Qurayza, and after a siege of over three weeks, the Qurayza surrendered. While many Arabs pleaded with Muhammad to let the Qurayza leave unmolested, Muhammad had other plans. Unlike expelling the Qaynuqa and Nadir, Muhammad exterminated the Qurayza, with an estimated 600 to 900 Jewish men being beheaded in one day. The women and children were sold into slavery, and Muhammad took one of the widows, Rayhana, as a “concubine.”
In 629 A.D., Muhammad led a campaign against the surviving Jews of Nadir, now living in Khaybar. The battle was again bloody and barbaric, and the survivors of the massacre were either expelled or allowed to remain as “second-class citizens.” Eventually, upon the ascension of Omar as caliph, most Jews were expelled from Arabia around the year 640 A.D.
This brings us, then, to the question of why modern-day Muslims still boast of the slaughter of the Jewish tribes and the Battle of Khaybar. The answer lies in what the Qur’an — and later on, the various Hadiths — says about the Jews. The Qur’an is replete with verses that can be described only as virulently anti-Semitic. The amount of Surahs is too numerous to cite, but a few will suffice: Surah 2:75 (Jews distorted the Torah); 2:91 (Jews are prophet-killers), 4:47 (Jews have distorted the Bible and have incurred condemnation from Allah for breaking the Sabbath), 5:60 (Jews are cursed, and turned into monkeys and pigs), and 5:82 (Jews and pagans are the strongest in enmity to the Muslims and Allah). And of course, there is the genocidal Hadith from Sahih Bukhari, 4:52:177, which would make Adolph Hitler proud. “The Day of Judgment will not have come until you fight with the Jews, and the stones and the trees behind which a Jew will be hiding will say: ‘O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, come and kill him!”‘ Thus, the Arab Muslims had their own “final solution” in store for the Jews already in the 7th century.
The fact that Muslims still point to these (and many other) hateful verses in the Qur’an and Hadith should give Jews — not just Israelis — pause to consider if there can ever be true peace between Muslims and Jews, let alone between Muslims and Israel. When the armies of Islam occupied the area of Byzantine “Palestine” in the 7th century, the land became part of “Dar al-Islam” (House of Islam). Until that area is returned to Islam, (i.e., Israel’s extermination), she remains part of “Dar al harb” (House of War). It now becomes clear that this is a conflict of religious ideology and not a conflict over a piece of “real estate.”
Finally, one must ask the question: Aside from non-Arab Turkey, whose relations with Israel are presently teetering on the verge of collapse, why is it that no other non-Arab Muslim country in the Middle East has ever had full relations (if any at all) with Israel, such as faraway countries like Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan? Indeed, why would Persian Iran — conquered by the Arabs — have such a deep hatred for Jews and Israel, whereas a non-Muslim country such as India does not feel such enmity? The answer is painfully clear: The contempt in which the Qur’an and other Islamic writings hold Jews does not exist in the scriptures of the Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, and other Eastern religions. Therefore, people that come from non-Muslim states do not have this inherent hatred towards Jews, and by extension, towards Israel. But when a people — or peoples — is raised with a scripture that regards another people and religion as immoral and less than human, then it is axiomatic why such hatred and disdain exists on the part of Muslims for Jews and Israel.
Islam — as currently interpreted and practiced — cannot accept a Jewish state of any size in its midst. Unless Muslims come to terms with their holy writings vis-à-vis Jews, Judaism, and Israel and go through some sort of “reformation,” it will be unlikely that true peace will ever come to the Middle East. In the meantime, unless Islam reforms, Israel should accept the fact that the Muslims will never accept Israel as a permanent fact in the Middle East.
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