Media Ignore Al Gore’s Financial Ties to Global Warming

Media Ignore Al Gore’s Financial Ties to Global Warming

Posted by Noel Sheppard on March 2, 2007 – 09:58.

As NewsBusters reported here, here, and here, there are huge dollars to be made from global warming alarmism. However, conceivably no one is better positioned to financially benefit from this scam than Dr. Global Warming himself, former Vice President Al Gore, a fact that the media will surely not share with Americans any time soon.

Yet, if America’s press would take some time out of their busy schedules covering the earth-shattering details surrounding Anna Nicole Smith’s demise, they might find a deliciously inconvenient truth about the soon-to-be-Dr. Gore that is significantly more fascinating and diabolical than anything likely to emerge from that courtroom in Broward County, Florida.

As reported by Dan Riehl (emphasis mine throughout):

Former Vice President Al Gore has built a Green money-making machine capable of eventually generating billions of dollars for investors, including himself, but he set it up so that the average Joe can’t afford to play on Gore’s terms. And the US portion is headed up by a former Gore staffer and fund raiser who previously ran afoul of both the FEC and the DOJ, before Janet Reno jumped in and shut down an investigation during the Clinton years.

Think Katie, Charlie, or Brian will be all over this tonight? Regardless, that was just the tip of the questionably melting iceberg as reported by Bill Hobbs in Nashville, Tennessee:

[H]ow Gore buys his “carbon offsets,” as revealed by The Tennessean raises serious questions. According to the newspaper’s report, Gore buys his carbon offsets through Generation Investment Management:

Gore helped found Generation Investment Management, through which he and others pay for offsets. The firm invests the money in solar, wind and other projects that reduce energy consumption around the globe…

Gore is chairman of the firm and, presumably, draws an income or will make money as its investments prosper. In other words, he “buys” his “carbon offsets” from himself, through a transaction designed to boost his own investments and return a profit to himself. To be blunt, Gore doesn’t buy “carbon offsets” through Generation Investment Management – he buys stocks.

Fascinating. So, as Dr. Global Warming travels the world in his private jet while spending 20 times the average American on energy for his home, all the time telling us its okay because he’s buying carbon offsets, he’s actually purchasing these investments from himself.

Furthermore, and maybe more important, Gore stands to benefit financially in a potentially huge way if more and more people buy into this junk science.

Isn’t that special?

Yet, it is not clear that Gore’s money is going to purchase carbon offsets at all. Riehl reported:

Here’s a list indicating what it takes to make money along with Al. Funds associated with these companies have placed millions of dollars under Al Gore’s control. And, as you’ll see below, Gore’s selection for the US President of GIM might raise a few eyebrows as well.

AFLAC INC – AQUANTIVE INC – AUTODESK INC – BECTON DICKINSON & CO BLACKBAUD INC – GENERAL ELECTRIC CO – GREENHILL & CO INC – JOHNSON CTLS INC – LABORATORY CORP AMER HLDGS – METABOLIX INC – NORTHERN TR CORP – NUVEEN INVTS INC -STAPLES INC – SYSCO CORP – TECHNE CORP – UBS AG – VCA ANTECH INC – WATERS CORP – WHOLE FOODS MKT INC

According to their own documents, GIM intends to invest in, or buy companies poised to cash in on Global Warming concerns.

Putting this in perspective, for years the left and their media minions have posited that George W. Bush started war with Iraq to benefit the company Vice President Dick Cheney used to run, Halliburton, as well as Bush’s oil tycoon friends. In fact, there have been times when you couldn’t swing a dead cat in any pressroom in this nation without hitting a reporter working on such a story.

Yet, as the former Vice President continues to plug global warming as a coming crisis in need of immediate attention, the same media completely ignore his obvious financial conflicts of interest.

No liberal media bias there.

However, as Riehl pointed out, this story is even juicier:

To add insult to injury, Gore chose Peter S. Knight, an old friend and colleague some are sure to recall, as the US President of GIM.

Peter S. Knight, formerly Managing Director Met West Financial, lawyer, Chief of Staff for Senator Al Gore (D-TN) from 1977-1989, and Campaign Manager for President Clinton’s successful re-election in 1996, is President of Generation U.S.

This would be him:   Reno Rejects Inquiry Into a Clinton Aide

Atty Gen Janet Reno decides against any further investigation of Peter Knight, Pres Clinton’s 1996 campaign manager in connection with office building development in nation’s capital; such an investigation could have led to naming independent counsel to look further into activities of Knight, who is also former top assistant to Vice Pres Al Gore.

Yes, thanks to Janet Reno, no one ever found out how $20,000 in stock turned up in an account for Knight’s then 13 year old child.

Dispute over Democratic Party campaign-financing shifts to Zachary Knight, 13-year-old son of Peter S Knight, Clinton-Gore campaign chairman in 1996, who was given $20,000 in stock by William Haney 3d, chairman of Molten Metal Technology Inc; Republicans believe gift, which came after father was named chairman of campaign, was really payment to Knight, who had worked as $7,000-per-month lobbyist for company; Knight denies involvement in any impropriety; photo

Riehl accurately asked:

If Gore’s motivation in pushing Global Warming is so altruistic, was it really necessarily for the already wealthy Gore to establish a multi-million dollar corporation in England to cash in? And given the history of Gore and Knight, are these people we should trust to drive a re-vamping of the world economy at the same time they’re lining their pockets because of our much smaller carbon footprints?

Riehl marvelously concluded:

If Al Gore is successful with this latest scheme, Gore and his cronies are going to be much more $green$ than most of the earth. And the only green in this for you and me is the kind that accompanies envy as Gore trucks around on private jets putting dollars to offset his extravagance into a cash machine generating profits on the backs of the middle class with misrepresented science that doesn’t deserve to be called science at all.

Meanwhile, a complacent media, rather than hounding Gore over his financial conflicts of interest, continue to shill for this conman’s junk science.

When you add it all up, this is a flimflam of epic proportions:

  • First, Gore sets up a company that will invest in other companies that will benefit from global warming alarmism

  • Second, Gore gets some Hollywood types to fund and produce a movie designed to scare the c-c-carbon out of the population

  • Third, Gore travels the world promoting this movie, while pushing the view that a cataclysm is imminent if the world doesn’t immediately act

  • Fourth, an adoring media falls for the con hook, line, and sinker. Rather than debunking the flaws in the theories, the media promote every word of it while advancing the concept that Gore’s views represent those of an overwhelming majority of scientists

  • Fifth, scared governments and citizens across the globe invest in alternative energy programs driving up the shares of companies Gore’s group has already invested in

  • Sixth, Gore and his cronies make billions as they laugh all the way to the bank at the stupidity of their fellow citizens

America — what a country!

Obama’s Church – Afrocentric, Racist And Bush Hating

Obama’s Church – Afrocentric, Racist And

Bush Hating

As readers here know, there has been some recent controversy about Barack Obama’s religious background.

Mr. Obama has recently issued statements through his spokesmen in the media (i.e., reporters) which express his shock at being questioned about such things.

Most of his media spokesmen (i.e., reporters) have then gone on to cite his membership in Chicago’s Trinity United Church Of Christ parish as proof that he is just a regular run of the mill American Christian.

But a visit to the Trinity Church’s website proves that it is not your everyday Christian parish:

Trinity United Church of Christ

About Us

We are a congregation which is Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian… Our roots in the Black religious experience and tradition are deep, lasting and permanent. We are an African people, and remain “true to our native land,” the mother continent, the cradle of civilization. God has superintended our pilgrimage through the days of slavery, the days of segregation, and the long night of racism. It is God who gives us the strength and courage to continuously address injustice as a people, and as a congregation. We constantly affirm our trust in God through cultural expression of a Black worship service and ministries which address the Black Community.

Trinity United Church of Christ adopted the Black Value System written by the Manford Byrd Recognition Committee chaired by Vallmer Jordan in 1981. We believe in the following 12 precepts and covenantal statements. These Black Ethics must be taught and exemplified in homes, churches, nurseries and schools, wherever Blacks are gathered. They must reflect on the following concepts:

1. Commitment to God
2. Commitment to the Black Community
3. Commitment to the Black Family
4. Dedication to the Pursuit of Education
5. Dedication to the Pursuit of Excellence
6. Adherence to the Black Work Ethic
7. Commitment to Self-Discipline and Self-Respect
8. Disavowal of the Pursuit of “Middleclassness”
9. Pledge to make the fruits of all developing and acquired skills available to the Black Community
10. Pledge to Allocate Regularly, a Portion of Personal Resources for Strengthening and Supporting Black Institutions
11. Pledge allegiance to all Black leadership who espouse and embrace the Black Value System
12. Personal commitment to embracement of the Black Value System.

The Pastor as well as the membership of Trinity United Church of Christ is committed to a 10-point Vision:

1. A congregation committed to ADORATION.
2. A congregation preaching SALVATION.
3. A congregation actively seeking RECONCILIATION.
4. A congregation with a non-negotiable COMMITMENT TO AFRICA.
5. A congregation committed to BIBLICAL EDUCATION.
6. A congregation committed to CULTURAL EDUCATION.
7. A congregation committed to the HISTORICAL EDUCATION OF AFRICAN PEOPLE IN DIASPORA.
8. A congregation committed to LIBERATION.
9. A congregation committed to RESTORATION.
10. A congregation working towards ECONOMIC PARITY.

Some excerpts from the “Black Value System” via the Trinity Church’s website (pdf):

BLACK VALUE SYSTEM

Statement of Purpose

We honor Dr. Manford Byrd, our brother in Christ, because of the exemplary manner in which he has thrice withstood the ravage of being denied his earned ascension to the number one position in the Chicago School System

The Black Value System

These Black Ethics must be taught and exampled in homes, churches, nurseries and schools, wherever Blacks are gathered. They must reflect the following concepts:

Commitment of God

“The God of our weary years” will give us the strength to give up prayerful passivism and become Black Christian Activist, soldiers for Black freedom and the dignity of all humankind…

Commitment to Self-Discipline and Self-Respect

To accomplish anything worthwhile requires self-discipline. We must be a community of self-disciplined persons, if we are to actualize and utilize our own human resources instead of perpetually submitting to exploitation by others. Self discipline coupled with a respect for self, will enable each of us to be an instrument of Black Progress, and a model for Black Youth.

Disavowal of the Pursuit of “Middleclassness”

Classic methodology on control of captives teaches that captors must keep the captive ignorant educationally, but trained sufficiently well to serve the system. Also, the captors must be able to identify the “talented tenth” of those subjugated, especially those who show promise of providing the kind of leadership that might threaten the captor’s control.

Those so identified as separated from the rest of the people by:

Killing them off directly, and/or fostering a social system that encourages them to kill off one another.

Placing them in concentration camps, and/or structuring an economic environment that induces captive youth to fill the jails and prisons.

Seducing them into a socioeconomic class system which while training them to earn more dollars, hypnotizes them into believing they are better than others and teaches them to think in terms of “we” and “they” instead of “us”

A visit to the church’s bookstore shows they have been true to their word. It is full of “Afrocentric” books, many of  which make the usual preposterous Afrocentric claims, such as that Cleopatra was black:

 

The book store also shamelessly hawks Mr. Osama’s books:

 

But Trinity Church’s proselytizing doesn’t stop with re-writing history and promoting its parishioners.

Here is the latest sermon from its pastor, Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. (pdf file):

WHAT’S GOIN’ ON?

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Marvin Gaye’s powerful “message song” is a song that made him famous because it went against the “Motown entertainment rule.” It raised serious questions about the culture, the country and governmental policy.

His song raised questions about Black-on-Black violence, about drugs, about war and about the way in which we were living (or not living) in a very difficult period of history.

I use his words today on the third Sunday of a New Year to keep before you the painful truth of who we are and where it is we are in this racist United States of America! What’s goin’ on?

We have lost over 3,000 boys and girls in an illegal and unjust war, and the media is on a feeding frenzy about Barack Obama’s church. Where is the outrage about the 3,000 dead American military personnel and the 600,000 dead Iraqi civilians who are dead for no reason other than greed and ego? What’s goin’ on?

This past Wednesday, January 17th, the House of Representatives deliberated on a bill to cut interest rates on federally subsidized student loans. On Thursday, January 18th, the House of Representatives considered legislation that would repeal some royalties and tax incentives from the oil and gas industries and redistribute that money to alternative and renewable energy such as bio-fuels.

The media, however, is not covering that news. The media wants to know about Barack Obama’s pastor. What’s goin’ on?

On the weekend leading up to Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday, the House of Representatives passed a bill requiring the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services to negotiate drug prices for the Medicare program. The President who is “staying the course” and sending 1,500 more troops to their death has issued a veto threat against the measure and there is no public outcry and no media outrage. What’s goin’ on?

The President, who is “staying the course” and sending 21,500 more troops to their death has issued a veto threat against the measure and there is no public outcry and no media outrage.

The President’s “New Plan” (more troops, more death and more war) promises an insane escalation — in Iraq, Iran and beyond! With the torture of Abu Ghraib, the complete destructions of cities like Fallujah and over 600,000 deaths due to collateral damage, the President complained in his speech that there had been “too many restrictions” on the actions of the United States Forces in the Iraq war.

The President’s “New Plan” (more troops, more death and more war) promises an insane escalation — in Iraq, Iran and beyond!

Am I the only one who heard that? What’s goin’ on?

I celebrate forty years of ordained ministry this weekend. I bask in the 40-year glow of God’s Grace, God’s forgiveness and God’s lessons about humility.

The e-mails that I have been getting this week, the news clippings that I am being sent and the racist blogs that are flooding the Internet make me know, however, that even as I bask, the work ahead for the church of Jesus Christ is just as serious and difficult today (if not more so) as it was forty years ago when I was ordained during the Vietnamese War!

The President tries to frame the justification for his insanity by using language describing the debate in this country over the war as “a great struggle between those who believe in freedom in moderation and extremists who kill the innocent.”

The reality, however, is that the entire war in Iraq and the larger “war on terror” have been based on lies, half-truths and distortions to serve the agenda of the United States imperialism. Where is the public outcry? Where is the outrage? What’s goin’ on?

There is more focus on what the Bears may or may not do as they play a football game against New Orleans than there is on the 3,000 homeless who are still living or displaced in the real life game called “New Orleans.”

Those poor Black and white displaced citizens of New Orleans (not imported team members playing for New Orleans), who have no place to go and no place to live because of this administration’s illegal war and its billions of dollars wasted on prosecuting that war, join with me in asking, “What’s goin’ on?”

Excuse me! The victims of Hurricane Katrina are no longer on the radar screen of the media. Only Barack, his church, his pastor and white arrogance!

I invite your sincere prayers this weekend. The generation of ministers behind me has its work cut out for them in some incredible and overwhelming ways!

Sincerely yours,

Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.

So much for the separation of church and state.

Speaking of which, here is what is being promoted at the top of the church’s home page as we speak:

MEET SENATOR BARACK OBAMA!!!

On Sunday, January 28th, immediately following the 11:00 a.m. worship service, meet Senator Barack Obama, author of the best-selling book, Audacity of Hope. Purchase your copy of Audacity of Hope in the Akiba Bookstore and have it personally signed by Senator Obama. You do not want to miss this monumental experience!

Where is the ACLU?

Global Warming Solution Known as ‘Carbon Credits’ Collapses

Global Warming Solution Known as ‘Carbon Credits’ Collapses

Posted by Noel Sheppard on February 22, 2007 – 10:44.

One of the primary solutions for climate change being touted by global warming alarmists is the purchase and sale of carbon credits. Put simply, companies, countries, and individuals could balance their CO2 output by purchasing credits from others that are emitting less greenhouse gases than prescribed maximums.

The concept is that this would give companies, countries, and individuals a financial incentive to produce less CO2. Readers might recall that during a debate on “Hannity’s America” this past Sunday evening, the two liberal guests firmly avowed that there wasn’t anything wrong with Al Gore’s use of private planes because he was offsetting his massive emission of CO2 with purchases of carbon credits.

Unfortunately, there’s a hitch in this scheme that threatens to totally derail it: carbon prices are plummeting due to an excess supply. I realize this might be a bit complex, but an article published in Green Business News wonderfully detailed the problems inherent in this scheme (emphasis mine throughout):  

A leading economist this week warned that the world’s two leading carbon trading schemes are failing to deliver the expected benefits due to a collapse in the price of carbon credits – and the situation is likely to get far worse before it gets better.

Many politicians have identified carbon emissions trading schemes as the best means of tackling climate change, arguing that by putting a price on carbon emissions firms have a financial incentive to reduce their carbon footprint.

However, speaking to an audience of academics and business leaders at this week’s Tyndall Centre conference on investments in low carbon technologies, Professor Catrinus Jepma of the University of Amsterdam warned that both the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme and the UN’s Clean Development Mechanism were in danger of failing with prices for the carbon credits used under both schemes predicted to reach just a few cents.

Stick with this, folks, because the entire concept of carbon credits could totally implode:

The Stern Report suggests we need a price for a tonne of carbon emissions of $20, rising to $30, $40 or even $50 to stabilise [the level of CO2 in the atmosphere] at manageable levels,” he said. “But there is a good chance that the carbon credits that are meant to provide incentives for reducing emissions will be available for next to nothing.”

How delicious. The article marvelously continued:

The problems with the European Trading Scheme are well documented with the collapse in the price of a tonne of carbon dating back to May last year when it emerged that most countries in the scheme had set their carbon caps far too high, resulting in fewer firms than expected having to buy credits and causing the price of a tonne of carbon to plummet from over €30 to less than €10.

Everybody still with me? Good:

As one delegate observed “with some firms having carbon emissions capped at 110 percent of what they actually required it was always going to fail“.

The EU is seeking to rectify the problem ahead of the second phase of the scheme, which starts next year, and recently rejected many member countries proposed emission allowances for the next phase as too high, ordering them to go away and come back with lower caps that will force more firms to cut emissions or buy credits.

However, Jepma argued that with no link existing between the first and second phase of the scheme the cost of carbon credits will drop to almost nothing by the end of the year. Currently the price is already below one euro meaning there is little incentive for firms to cut emissions as it is cheaper to just buy in credits to offset their pollution.

The net effect here, folks, is that all incentive to cut emissions completely disappears if there is no value to these credits. The article continued:

He also warned that something similar was in danger of happening with the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), which is designed to allow signatories to the agreement to meet their carbon emission reduction targets by buying in Certified Emission Reductions (CERs) or carbon credits from CDM-approved carbon reduction projects in the developing world.

Jepma said the scheme was in danger of becoming a victim of its own success with over 500 projects already approved by CDM and a further 1,000 projects in the pipeline awaiting approval. He predicted that as a result over 2.4bn CERs will be available by 2012.

Meanwhile, Jepma warned that Russia and many of the Central European States are on track to be well below their Kyoto emission targets for 2012 meaning they will generate 2.8bn credits or Assigned Amount Units that they can sell to those countries unable to meet their Kyoto obligations.

This means that there will be a supply of 5.2bn tonnes worth of assorted carbon credits available under the various Kyoto carbon trading mechanisms by 2012, but the biggest polluters in the scheme – the EU, Canada and Japan – are expected to exceed their targets by just 3.6bn tonnes.

Under the Kyoto targets the supply of credits will outstrip the demand,” said Jepma. “We are going to see the same scenario as with the ETS whereby the price for a tonne of carbon starts high and then collapses to close to zero by the end of the scheme… which is precisely the wrong message.”

And here’s the payoff, folks:

He added that such a scenario would not only remove the financial incentive for countries to invest  in clean technologies that help them stick to their emissions targets – as it would be cheaper to continue polluting and just buy credits – but it would also discourage investment in carbon reduction projects in developing countries as they would have to pay for CDM approval only to find they could not get a good price for the carbon credits they generate

As liberals and the media carp and whine about America’s lack of involvement in Kyoto, they completely ignore all the inherent flaws. As a result, it seems that the Senate in 1997 was quite wise to recommend – in a 95 to 0 vote – that the Clinton administration not participate in this farce.

Of course, this is a fact that all in the media have completely forgotten as they blame America’s lack of involvement in these protocols on George W. Bush.

Regardless, don’t expect to see any of this reported by major American media outlets. After all, we certainly wouldn’t want the public to know how this whole scheme is failing in Europe.

Western State Governors Succumb To Climate-Change Silliness

 

Western State Governors Succumb To Climate-Change Silliness storytext(‘story’); Pact to Reduce “Greenhouse Gases” Will Harm State Economies but do Nothing to Affect Climate  In an amusing yet troubling act of trendy hubris, governors of five Western states – Arizona, California, New Mexico, Oregon and Washington – agreed to reduce so-called “greenhouse-gas emissions” in an effort to “combat climate change.”  Under the pact, entitled the “Western Regional Climate Action Initiative,” the five states agreed to establish a regional greenhouse-gas reduction goal within the next six months.  Afterward, the five states’ governors would then have eighteen months to draft a plan, such as a “cap-and-trade” scheme, to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. 

These “cap-and-trade” systems essentially cap the amount of carbon dioxide that companies within a jurisdiction are allowed to emit by distributing emission credits to factories, power plants and other producers.  Companies whose emissions fall below their cap could in turn sell their unused emissions credits to other companies that exceed their own caps. 

The governors’ effort is akin to dropping a few ice cubes into the Pacific Ocean in an attempt to cool it.  Perhaps the governors’ celebrated effort can slash a few millionths of a degree from the world’s temperature, which may increase by one degree during our lifetimes. 

Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano illustrated the sheer self-importance and self-congratulatory nature of these states’ pact when she proclaimed, “this is something that can’t wait.  We can’t continue not to do anything.” 

In a nutshell, this illustrates the feel-good mentality of climate-change alarmists:  “well, we’ve got to do something!”  Never mind the negative consequences or utter lack of actual effect on the earth’s climate. 

Naturally, sanctimonious academics whose subsidies depend upon them hyping a concocted crisis requiring never-ending amounts of additional grants and stifling regulation were thrilled.  “I’m tickled that we’re doing this,” said Jim Buizer, Executive Director of something entitled the “Office of Sustainability Initiatives” at Arizona State University. 

Unfortunately for these preening environmentalists, there are just a few minor problems with this scheme. 

First, the entire program itself may be voided by federal courts on the basis that they interfere with interstate commerce powers retained exclusively by the federal government.  Under the Constitution, the federal government maintains sole power to regulate interstate commerce, and individual state regulations that unduly burden interstate businesses and commerce are void. 

This reflects the Founding Fathers’ understanding that allowing individual states to stifle interstate commerce through a patchwork of conflicting regulations would destroy the national economy.  Where individual states require businesses to perform specific business operations (in this instance, limiting carbon emissions) that aren’t required by other states or federal law, these requirements are generally invalid because they burden businesses that are allowed to operate more efficiently in other states.  To cite a recent example, this is precisely why some states’ attempts to unilaterally impose fuel-efficiency standards on automobiles manufactured overseas or in other states were nullified under the Constitution’s Commerce Clause. 

Second, even if the governors’ scheme withstands Constitutional scrutiny, it is doomed to fail while bludgeoning these states’ economies. 

Carbon dioxide inevitably results from energy use, which drives our lives and economic activity.  Almost every activity in which humans engage requires energy output, whether powering a computer, shipping food or consumer products to buyers, driving to work, manufacturing a product or communicating with others over telecommunications wires.  Any attempt to punish energy use by imposing emission penalties necessarily limits these economic activities and imposes costs upon businesses that must satisfy the regulations.  In turn, this increases the costs of these economic activities to consumers, creating a vicious cycle. 

As a consequence, businesses and residents will flee these overly-restrictive states for other states that do not impose such pointless regulations.  For instance, why would a business open operations and hire employees in California or Arizona, when Utah and Texas do not impose the same stifling emissions regulations? 

Skeptical?  If so, consider Europe’s example.  Europeans patted themselves on the back for adopting the Kyoto Protocol’s regulations, promising to reduce their emissions.  As it turns out, however, Europe has failed to meet its self-imposed goals, and emissions have actually increased since adopting Kyoto.  According to even the United Nations, European Union emissions increased 2.4% between 2000 and 2004 (compared to only a 1.3% United States increase), despite their pledge to reduce emissions by 8% by 2012. 

Meanwhile, European economies are stagnant compared to high-growth countries like the United States and China, which haven’t imposed Kyoto’s suicidal mandates.  The five western states will suffer a similar fate under this misguided exercise in moral grandstanding. 

Simply put, the governors’ agreement will harm these states’ residents and economies, without doing a thing to cool the atmosphere. 

In other words, lots of pain, but no gain.  Bravo, Governors. 

postdate(‘story’);

Speaker Pelosi Loves William Jefferson More Than Homeland Security, Ethics and Maybe Even All Those Grandchildren

Speaker Pelosi Loves William Jefferson More Than Homeland Security, Ethics and Maybe Even All Those Grandchildren storytext(‘section’); Last week, Washington’s Culture of Corruption went from just plain disgusting to full-out scary. 

Many Americans missed the turn, consumed as they were by the need to get Anna Nicole Smith buried and justice gone wild in the pursuit thereof.

The turn was there nonetheless, as word leaked that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi intends to appoint William J. Jefferson, Democrat of Louisiana, to the House Homeland Security Committee.

After the FBI raided Congressman Jefferson’s freezer in August 2005, seizing $90,000 in neatly bundled, really cold cash, details of some of his extracurricular activities began to pour forth, and they are not pretty.

Outlined simplistically, Jefferson allegedly solicited bribes in return for help in arranging African business deals.  A former aide to Jefferson and the owner of the telecommunications company seeking to do the deals have pleaded guilty to bribing the Congressman. 

An investor in the scheme, believing she might be defrauded, went to the FBI and participated in a videotaped $100,000 sting, which subsequently yielded the $90,000 in marked bills seized from Congressman Jefferson’s freezer. 

There is even an FBI affidavit that Congressman Jefferson attempted (somewhat crudely and obviously) to hide documents from the FBI during the execution of the search warrant that recovered the $90,000.

There are clearly implications, if no revelations, of activities beyond the above-cited circumstances.  Yet when the FBI extended its investigation to Congressman Jefferson’s office in May 2006, then-Minority Leader Pelosi (along with way too many other Democrats and Republicans) screeched loudly, seemingly on the basis that investigations of the “Culture of Corruption,” even when judicially approved, cannot enter the hallowed halls from which said corruption might emanate.

In June 2006, as court documents on Congressman Jefferson’s activities began to bulge from evidence boxes, the House Democratic Caucus, meeting behind closed doors, stripped Jefferson of his seat on the House Ways and Means Committee, the better to cynically campaign against the “Culture of Corruption.”

“This isn’t about proof in a court of law.  This is about an ethical standard,” Pelosi was quoted as saying after the vote.

On December 9, 2006, Congressman Jefferson was re-elected to his ninth term in a run-off.  Even after that, now-Speaker Pelosi refused to allow Jefferson to return to the Ways and Means Committee, so busy was she proclaiming “the most ethical Congress in history,” to the applause of grandchildren everywhere.

In that context, the news last week of Jefferson’s potential appointment to the Homeland Security Committee stimulated amazingly little reaction. 

Congressman Peter T. King (R-N.Y.), the ranking Republican on the committee, did say, “It sends a terrible message.  They couldn’t trust him to write tax policy, so why should he be given access to our nation’s top secrets or making policy for national defense?  Members of the committee have access to intelligence secrets, plots here in the country, overseas, and people under suspicion.  This shows how unimportant the Democrats think homeland security is.”

Not to mention those “ethical standards” supposedly embodied in Speaker Pelosi’s “most ethical Congress in history.”  But it is one thing to abandon that cynical façade, as much as it contributed to the new Democrat majority in Congress.  It is totally another for the “leader” who, we are reliably told, is only two heartbeats away from the Presidency, to act so recklessly and, seemingly, so stupidly.

postdate(‘story’);

The Democratic Left and anti-Christian Hatred

The Democratic Left and anti-Christian Hatred

by Bill Levinson

Don Feder’s “Target: Evangelicals” is growing evidence of anti-Christian hatred by the Democratic Left. Alexandra Pelosi’s (yes, the daughter of George Soros’ Democrat Nancy Pelosi) documentary Friends of God is but the latest in the Democratic Left’s litany of hate speech against Christians and, as perpetrated by MoveOn.org and the National Jewish Democratic Council, Jews. Feder reports,

Pelosi’s piece is like a Bush supporter making a documentary on the anti-war movement by going to rallies and interviewing geriatric Trotskyites, dudes in dirty dreadlocks carrying signs equating
Israel to the Third Reich and transgendered Scientologists.

As reviewers noted, all that was missing here were the AK-47s and dynamite belts (giving a new twist to Bible Belt).

But that’s exactly the way cultural elitists view conservative Christians – as barely literate crackpots who could explode at any moment. As Rosie O’Donnell explained on ABC’s The View last year, “Radical Christianity is just as threatening as radical Islam in a country like America where we have separation of church and state.” Sneering at Christians is a favorite pastime of the cultural left. HBO’s Bill Maher calls politically active Christians “demagogues, con men and scolds.”

Rosie O’Donnell is the same individual who gave the keynote speech at the Million Mom March: another Soros-funded project, which was disgraced and destroyed by revelations that it was using tax-exempt money to support political candidacies. O’Donnell also said, “You are not allowed to own a gun” while employing a private security guard with a permit to carry a concealed weapon. As a wealthy elitist who wants one set of gun laws for herself and another for the peasantry, O’Donnell is an ideal spokesperson for the Democratic Left. These are the same people who think there should be one set of tax laws for themselves (it’s acceptable to file the kind of Form 990 tax return the Million Moms filed with the IRS for 2000) and another for everybody else (file an inaccurate tax return, get hit with heavy penalties and maybe go to jail).

Elitism, physical cowardice, or both are indeed standard characteristics of these people. O’Donnell hired a security guard to protect her adopted children. This is typical of rich cowards who think they can pay a man enough to die for them. A criminal has good reason to be terrified of a mother defending her children, but he also can hope that a rent-a-cop will resign on the spot rather than risk his life. Ted Kennedy, a rich man’s rich boy who never did a lick of useful work in his life, is another example. Although Kennedy is an ardent gun control supporter, his security guard was caught trying to carry a machine gun into a Senate office building.

Rich elitists are of course out of touch with genuine Democrats, most of whom are working people who actually have to earn money instead of inheriting it (Kennedy) or marrying it (John Kerry). Many genuine Democrats are also Christians. Most of Pennsylvania’s Irish and Polish coal miners were Catholics, and they voted Democratic because the Democrats sided with the working person against abusive and exploitative mine bosses. This is why their descendents are Democrats. There are reputedly more ethnic Poles in Chicago (which is almost entirely Democratic) than there are in Warsaw. Nonetheless, John Edwards’ bloggers at Pandagon and Shakespeare’s Sister, and the Soros-funded activists at MoveOn.org, do not hesitate to treat Catholics the way the Ku Klux Klan and cartoonist Thomas Nast once treated Catholics. The following photomanipulation of Pope Benedict could have easily come from Thomas Nast if he had had computer graphics software, but it actually came from MoveOn.org:


Here is what John Edwards’ classy and articulate bloggers Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan had to say at Pandagon and Shakespeare’s Sister. (They recently left the Edwards campaign under pressure from enraged Catholics and other decent Americans.)

Some reproductive rights links to consider while digesting Christmas leftovers by Amanda Marcotte suggests that Jesus’ mother should have used contraceptives or had an abortion, which seems to be the meaning of “Plan B.”

Q: What if Mary had taken Plan B after the Lord filled her with his [explicit description of semen]?
A: You’d have to justify your misogyny with another ancient mythology.

…And, needless to say, the Catholic church is not about to let something like compassion for girls get in the way of using the state as an instrument to force women to bear more tithing Catholics.

The Catholic League adds that Edwards blogger Melissa McEwan smeared not only Catholics but all Christians as follows.

“On November 1, 2006, on her blogspot Shakespeare’s Sister, she referred to President Bush’s ‘wingnut Christofascist base’ when lashing out against religious conservatives.

One or two isolated hate-mongers cannot be considered representative of the Democratic Party (just as James Baker and Grover Norquist don’t represent the Republican Party). The steady stream of anti-Christian and anti-Semitic hate from the Democrats’ left wing shows that this cancerous portion of the Democratic Party is indeed anti-Semitic and anti-Christian. MoveOn.org’s anti-Semitic, anti-Catholic, and anti-Evangelical hate speech is well documented. As an example, 19 out of 21 MoveOn.org Action Forum participants agreed with the following statement:

If the Catholics and Southern Baptists can gang up on the rest of America to further their plans for world domination. Then a group of highly trained espionage experts shouldn’t have a problem organising the attacks of 9/11.

Eight out of nine MoveOn.org Action Forum members agreed with the following slur, which ties right in with Marcotte’s and McEwan’s material (and also MoveOn’s official picture of Pope Benedict waving a gavel in front of the Supreme Court):

But until the priests are hounded down and arrested like the baby rapers they are, the neverending cycle will continue. You want to throw a monkey wrench in both political parties? Call for the arrest and immediate incarceration of the Catholic Pedophiles of America.

This should be quoted as often as possible, to make sure the “Catholic Pedophiles of America” know that the George Soros/ MoveOn.org branch of the Democratic Party (including Barack Obama) wants their votes next year. The same goes for the “Jew-y Jews,” “Judeo-Nazis,” and “whining arrogant Jews” (to use MoveOn.org Action Forum terminology), whom the National Jewish Democratic Council (aka National Judenrat Democratic Council) is sure will vote Democratic no matter what. That stops here and now, as the Million Mom March found to its dismay in 2000-2001, MoveOn.org found in late 2006, and the rest of these hatemongers, liars, and two-bit demagogues will find in 2007-2008.

Europe’s Stark Options

Europe’s Stark Options

March 1, 2007, 1:03 pm

by Daniel Pipes*

Europe’s long-term relations with its burgeoning Muslim minority, the continent’s most critical issue, will follow one of three paths: harmonious integration, the expulsion of Muslims, or an Islamic takeover. Which of these scenarios will most likely play out?

Europe’s future has vast importance not just for its residents. During a half-millennium, 1450-1950, this 7 percent of the world’s landmass drove world history; its creativity and vigor invented modernity. The region may have already lost that critical position sixty years ago, but it remains vitally important in economic, political, and intellectual terms. Which direction it goes in, therefore, has huge implications for the rest of humanity, and especially for its daughter countries, such as the United States, which historically have looked to Europe as a source of ideas, people, and goods.

Here is an assessment about the likelihood of each scenario.

I. Muslims Rule

The late Oriana Fallaci observed that, with the passage of time, “Europe becomes more and more a province of Islam, a colony of Islam.” The historian Bat Ye’or has dubbed this colony “Eurabia.” Walter Laqueur predicts in his forthcoming Last Days of Europe that Europe as we know it is bound to change. Mark Steyn, in America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It, goes further and argues that much of the Western world “will not survive the twenty-first century, and much of it will effectively disappear within our lifetimes, including many if not most European countries.” Three factors – faith, demography, and a sense of heritage – argue for Europe being Islamized.

Faith: An extreme secularism predominates in Europe, especially among its elites, to the point that believing Christians (such as George W. Bush) are seen as mentally unbalanced and unfit for public office. In 2005, Rocco Buttiliglione, a distinguished Italian politician and Catholic believer, was denied a position as Italy’s European Union commissioner because of his views on such issues as homosexuality. Entrenched secularism also means empty churches: in London, researchers estimate, more Muslims attend mosques on Friday than do Christians churches on Sunday, although the city is home to roughly 7 times more born-Christians than born-Muslims. As Christianity fades, Islam beckons; Prince Charles exemplifies the fascination of many Europeans with Islam. Many conversions could be in Europe’s future, for as the saying is ascribed to G.K. Chesterton, “When men stop believing in God they don’t believe in nothing; they believe in anything.”

Europe’s secularism shapes its discourse in ways quite unfamiliar to Americans. Hugh Fitzgerald, formerly vice president of JihadWatch.org, illustrates one dimension of this difference:

The most memorable utterances of American presidents have almost always included recognizable Biblical phrases. … This source of rhetorical strength was on display this past February [2003] when the Columbia shuttle blew up. Had it not been an American but a French shuttle that had blown up, and were Jacques Chirac having to give such a speech, he might well have used the fact that there were seven astronauts, and evoked an image of the Pleiades first named in pagan antiquity. The American President, at a solemn national ceremony that began and ended with Biblical Hebrew, did things differently. He took his text from Isaiah 40:26, which led to a seamless transition from mingled wonder and awe at the heavenly hosts brought forth by the Creator, to consolation for the earthly loss of the crew.

The buoyant faith of Muslims, with its attendant jihadi sensibility and Islamic supremacism, could not differ more from that of lapsed European Christians. This contrast leads many Muslims to see Europe as a continent ripe for conversion and domination. Outrageous supremacist claims result, such as the statement of Omar Bakri Mohammed, “I want Britain to become an Islamic state. I want to see the flag of Islam raised in 10 Downing Street.” Or the prediction of a Belgium-based imam: “Soon we will take power in this country. Those who criticize us now, will regret it. They will have to serve us. Prepare, for the hour is near.”[1]

Population: Demographic collapse also points to Europe being Islamized. The total fertility rate in Europe today averages about 1.4 per woman, whereas sustaining one’s population requires just over two children per couple, or 2.1 children per woman. The existing rate is just two-thirds of what it needs to be; one-third of the requisite population is simply not being born.

To avoid a severe diminution of population, with all the woes that implies – and specifically, an absence of workers to fund generous pension plans – Europe needs immigrants – lots of them. That imported third of the population tends to be Muslim, in part because Muslims are close by – it’s only thirteen kilometers from Morocco to Spain, only a couple of hundred to Italy from Albania or Libya; in part because colonial ties continue to bind South Asia to Britain or the Maghrib to France; and in part because of the violence, tyranny, and poverty so prevalent in the Muslim world today, which prompts wave after wave of emigration.

Likewise, the high fertility of Muslims complements the paucity of children among indigenous Christians. Although the Muslim fertility rate is falling, it remains significantly higher than that of Europe’s indigenous population. No doubt, the high birth rates have something to do with the premodern circumstances in which many Muslim women of Europe find themselves. In Brussels, “Muhammad” has for some years been the most popular name given to infant boys, while Amsterdam and Rotterdam are on track to be, by about 2015, the first major European cities with majority Muslim populations. The French analyst Michel Gurfinkiel estimates an ethnic street war in France would find the children of indigènes and of immigrants in a roughly one-to-one ratio. Current predictions see a Muslim majority in Russia’s army by 2015 and in the country as a whole by about 2050.

Sense of heritage: What often is depicted as Europe’s political correctness reflects what I believe is a deeper phenomenon, namely, the alienation of many Europeans from their civilization, a sense that their historic culture is not worth fighting for or even saving. It’s striking to note differences within Europe in this regard. Perhaps the country least prone to this alienation is France, where traditional nationalism still holds sway and the French take pride in their identity. Britain is the most alienated country, as symbolized by the plaintive government program, “ICONS – A Portrait of England,” that lamely hopes to rekindle patriotism by connecting Britons to their “national treasures,” such as Winnie-the-Pooh and the miniskirt.

This diffidence has had direct and adverse implications for Muslim immigrants, as Aatish Taseer explained in Prospect magazine.

Britishness is the most nominal aspect of identity to many young British Pakistanis. … If you denigrate your own culture you face the risk of your newer arrivals looking for one elsewhere. So far afield in this case, that for many second-generation British Pakistanis, the desert culture of the Arabs held more appeal than either British or subcontinental culture. Three times removed from a durable sense of identity, the energised extra-national worldview of radical Islam became one available identity for second-generation Pakistanis.

Immigrant Muslims widely disdain Western civilization, and especially its sexuality (pornography, divorce, homosexuality). Nowhere in Europe are Muslims being assimilated, rarely does intermarriage take place. Here is one colorful example, from Canada: The mother of the notorious Khadr brood, known as the country’s first family of terrorism, returned to Canada from Afghanistan and Pakistan in April 2004 with one of her sons. Despite her seeking refuge in Canada, she publicly insisted just a month earlier that Al-Qaeda-sponsored training camps were the best place for her children. “Would you like me to raise my child in Canada to be, by the time he’s 12 or 13 years old, to be on drugs or having some homosexual relationship? Is it better?”

(Ironically, in centuries past, as the historian Norman Daniel has documented, Christian Europeans looked down at Muslims with their multiple wives and harems as overly-sexualized, and therefore felt morally superior.)

To sum up: this first argument holds that Europe will be Islamized, quietly submitting to the dhimmi status or converting to Islam, because the yin of Europe and yang of Muslims fit so well: low and high religiosity, low and high fertility, low and high cultural confidence.[2] Europe is an open door through which Muslims are walking.

II. Muslims Rejected

Or will the door be shut in their face? American columnist Ralph Peters dismisses the first scenario: “Far from enjoying the prospect of taking over Europe by having babies, Europe’s Muslims are living on borrowed time. … predictions of a Muslim takeover of Europe … ignore history and Europe’s ineradicable viciousness.” Instead, depicting Europe as the place “that perfected genocide and ethnic cleansing,” he predicts its Muslims “will be lucky just to be deported,” and not killed. Claire Berlinski, in Menace in Europe: Why the Continent’s Crisis Is America’s, Too, implicitly agrees, pointing to the “ancient conflicts and patterns … now shambling out of the mists of European history” which could well trigger violence.

This scenario has indigenous Europeans – who do still constitute 95 percent of the continent’s population – waking up one day and asserting themselves. “Basta!” they will say, and reclaim their historic order. This is not so remote; a chafing among Europeans, less among elites than the masses, loudly protests changes already underway. Illustrations of that resentment include the anti-hijab legislation in France, irritation over the restrictions of national flags and Christian symbols, and the insistence on serving wine at state dinners. A movement spontaneously developed in several French cities in early 2006 to serve pork soup to the poor, thus intentionally excluding Muslims.

These are minor issues, to be sure, but insurgent anti-immigrant parties have already emerged in many countries and are beginning to demand not just effective control of borders but the expulsion of illegal immigrants. A nativist movement throughout Europe is forming largely unnoticed beneath our eyes. However meager its record so far, it has huge potential. Parties opposed to immigration and Islam generally have neo-fascist backgrounds but are growing more respectable over time, shedding their antisemitic origins and their dubious economic theories, focusing instead on the questions of faith, demography, and identity, and learning about Islam and Muslims. The British National Party and Belgium’s Vlaamse Belang offer two examples of such a move toward respectability, which may one day be followed by electability. The presidential race in France in 2002 came down to a contest between Jacques Chirac and the neo-fascist Jean-Marie Le Pen.

Other parties have already tasted power. Jörg Haider and the Freiheits Partei Österreich were briefly in office. The Lega Nord in Italy was for years part of the ruling coalition. They will likely grow stronger because their anti-Islamist and often anti-Islamic messages resonate, and mainstream parties will partially adopt their messages. (Denmark’s Conservative Party offers a model; after 72 years in the wilderness, it returned to power in 2001 due basically to anger concerning immigration.) These parties will likely benefit when immigration to Europe surges uncontrollably to ever-higher levels, including perhaps a mass exodus from Africa, as many indications suggest will happen.

Once in power, nationalist parties will reject multiculturalism and try to re-establish traditional values and mores. One can only speculate about their means and about the Muslim reaction. Peters dwells on the fascistic and violent aspects of some groups and expects an anti-Muslim backlash to take ominous forms. He even sketches a scenario in which “U.S. Navy ships are at anchor and U.S. Marines have gone ashore at Brest, Bremerhaven or Bari to guarantee the safe evacuation of Europe’s Muslims.”

For years, Muslims have worried about just such incarceration and brutalization, followed by expulsion or even massacres. Already in the late 1980s, the late Kalim Siddiqui, director of London’s Muslim Institute, raised the specter of “Hitler-style gas chambers for Muslims.” Shabbir Akhtar warned in his 1989 book, Be Careful With Muhammad that “the next time there are gas chambers in Europe, there is no doubt concerning who’ll be inside them,” meaning Muslims. A character in Hanif Kureishi’s 1991 novel, The Buddha of Suburbia, prepares the guerilla war that he expects will follow after “the whites finally turned on the blacks and Asians and tried to force us into gas chambers.”

But it is more likely that European efforts at reclamation will be initiated peaceably and legally, with Muslims – in keeping with recent patterns of intimidation and terrorism – being the ones to initiate violence. Multiple polls confirm that about 5 percent of British Muslims endorse the 7/7 bombings, suggesting a general readiness to resort to force.

However it happens, a European reassertion cannot be assumed to take place cooperatively.

III. Muslims Integrated

In the happiest scenario, autochthonous Europeans and Muslim immigrants find a modus vivendi and live together harmoniously. Perhaps the classic statement of this optimistic expectation was a 1991 study, La France, une chance pour l’Islam (”France, an Opportunity for Islam”) by Jeanne-Hélène and Pierre Patrick Kaltenbach. “For the first time in history,” they wrote, “Islam is offered the chance to waken in a democratic, rich, laic, and peaceable country.” That hopefulness lives on. An Economist leader from mid-2006 asserts that “for the moment at least, the prospect of Eurabia looks like scaremongering.” Also at that time, Jocelyne Cesari, associate professor of Islamic studies at the Harvard Divinity School, claimed a balance exists: just as “Islam is changing Europe,” she said, “Europe is changing Islam.” She finds that “Muslims in Europe do not want to change the nature of European states” and expects them to adapt themselves into the European context.

Such optimism, unfortunately, has little foundation. Europeans could yet rediscover their Christian faith, have more babies, and cherish their own heritage. They could encourage non-Muslim immigration or acculturate the Muslims already among them. But such changes are not now underway, nor are their prospects good. Instead, Muslims are cultivating grievances and ambitions at odds with their indigenous neighbors. Worryingly, each generation appears more alienated than its predecessor. Canadian novelist Hugh MacLennan dubbed his country’s English-French split the “Two Solitudes“; one sees something similar, but far more pronounced, developing in Europe. Those polls of British Muslims for example, find that a majority of them perceive a conflict between their British and Muslim identities and want Islamic law instituted.

The possibility of Muslims accepting the confines of historic Europe and smoothly integrating within it can virtually be dismissed from consideration. Even Bassam Tibi, professor at the University of Göttingen, who has often warned that “Either Islam gets Europeanized, or Europe gets Islamized,” has personally given up on the continent. Recently, he announced that he is leaving Germany after 44 years’ residence there, to move to Cornell University in the United States.

Conclusion

As the American columnist Dennis Prager sums them up, “It is difficult to imagine any other future scenario for Western Europe than its becoming Islamicized or having a civil war.” Indeed, these two deeply unattractive alternative paths appear to define Europe’s choices, with powerful forces pull in the contrary directions of Muslims taking over or Muslims rejected, Europe an extension of North Africa or in a state of quasi-civil war.

Which will it be? The decisive events that will resolve this question have yet to take place, so one cannot yet make the call. Decision-time is fast approaching, however. Within the next decade or so, today’s flux will end, the Europe-Islam equation will harden, and the continent’s future course should become apparent.

Correctly anticipating that course is the more difficult for being historically unprecedented. No large territory has ever shifted from one civilization to another by virtue of a collapsed population, faith, and identity; nor has a people risen on so grand a scale to reclaim its patrimony. The novelty and magnitude of Europe’s predicament make it difficult to understand, tempting to overlook, and nearly impossible to predict. Europe marches us all into terra incognita.

Mr. Pipes (www.DanielPipes.org) is director of the Middle East Forum and visiting professor at Pepperdine University. This article is adapted from a talk for a Woodrow Wilson Center conference on “Euro-Islam: The Dynamics of Effective Integration.”

[1] De Morgen, Oct. 5, 1994. Cited in Koenraad Elst, “The Rushdie Rules”, Middle East Quarterly, June 1998.
[2] It’s striking to note that in these three way, Europe and the United States were much more similar 25 years ago than today. This suggests that their bifurcation results less from historical patterns going back centuries and more from developments in the 1960s. However deeply that decade affected the United States, it had a far deeper impact on Europe.

*National Interest
March-April 2007
http://www.danielpipes.org/article/4323
Cross-posted with permission