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Friday, 31 August 2012

Another historic (re-)election

Every Democrat presidential candidate since Civil Rights has lost the White Vote, but several have won by carrying the Black Vote.

That doesn't appear yet likely to change.

But in the past century, every Democrat President running for re-election--save one--has won by carrying the Jewish Vote. The sole exception was Jimmy Carter in 1980.

By all appearances, Barack Obama will be the second.

UPDATE: He got 69% of the Jewish vote--enough to win re-election.

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Much ado about Iran

Counter I'm copying here various news articles from the Times of Israel, to give an idea of how the Iranian threat, and the appropriate response to it, are perceived in Israel and the USA: http://israeli-defense-officials-iran-won't-hit-back-at-us-targets-if-israeli-attacks
Tehran is not interested in raising the stakes in its standoff with Israel and would not strike US targets if Israel were to attack its nuclear program, Channel 10 news reported Wednesday, quoting unnamed senior Israeli defense officials. Contrary to previous assessments that Iran would turn an Israeli attack into an all-out regional war — involving the US and its Middle Eastern allies — current wisdom holds that it would avoid drawing the US into battle and settle for retaliating solely against Israel, the report quoted the officials as saying.
The US does not want to be “complicit” in an Israeli strike that “probably” would not only fail to destroy Iran’s nuclear program, but could also undo international diplomatic pressure on Tehran, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staffs General Martin Dempsey said Thursday in London. An attack by Israel would “clearly delay but probably not destroy Iran’s nuclear program,” Dempsey said, adding: ”I don’t want to be complicit if they [Israel] choose to do it.”
The US’s top general – the Guardian reported – said that he could not presume to know Iran’s ultimate intentions in pursuing a nuclear program, as intelligence was inconclusive on that score.
It was clear, however, he maintained, that mounting pressure from the American-led “international coalition…could be undone if [Iran] was attacked prematurely.” Last week, Dempsey said that Israel and the US did not see eye to eye on the Iranian nuclear threat, admitting that Washington and Jerusalem were on “different clocks” regarding Tehran’s nuclear ambitions. He noted, however, that he understood Israel’s urgency in calling for action against Iran’s nuclear program. “They are living with an existential concern that we are not living with,” he acknowledged, according to AFP.
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon delivered a sharp rebuttal to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Thursday, after Khamenei delivered a speech denouncing Israel, the UN and the US at the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Tehran. “I strongly reject any threat by any [UN] member state to destroy another, or outrageous comments to deny historical facts such as the Holocaust,” Ban said. “Claiming another UN member state does not have the right to exist or describe it in racist terms is not only utterly wrong but undermines the very principles we have all promised to uphold,” the UN chief added. Khamenei, who has final say on all state matters in Iran, accused Israel of being made up of “bloodthirsty wolves,” a day after Ban asked the cleric to tone down his rhetoric against Israel.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

What? Time for another Iran update already?

Yes, as things heat up toward the end I expect to report every significant piece of news. This one isn't so much news, as speculative editorial, but look at the source--it's not an Obama Administration leak nor an Israeli press interview, but someone currently on the "outside" who ought to know what he's talking about:
F. Michael Maloof, staff writer for WND and G2Bulletin, is a former senior security policy analyst in the office of the secretary of defense.
 Okay, so the gist of his speculation is that evidence points to, on one hand, a sudden "Middle Eastern"  concern about hardening military infrastructure against an Electromagnetic Pulse attack; on the other hand, some cryptic hints from Israel that Iran is entering a "zone of immunity" from military attack.

Given that we were told years ago that Iran would "soon" have both an operational nuclear program and immunity to it being attacked, it's likely that this is a reference to the ability of Israel to shut down Iran's electrical grid. I wrote about this last November, when the weapon of choice was thought to be a drone that would harmlessly shut down power temporarily. Now the thinking is that a high-altitude nuclear explosion would not just shut down the grid, but permanently disable every piece of electronic equipment within 250 miles of Isfahan--preventing a launch order from being able to get through.

Whatever the case, I can't imagine that any attack scenario would be without one or the other element.

Monday, 20 August 2012

A Nuclear Iran only six weeks away--unless Israel stops it

I could be commenting on a daily basis on the buildup of the Persio-Israeli war, but I hate to overstate the obvious: unless Iran stops working on a nuclear weapon with which to target Israel, it will be attacked before the year is out. Period.

Regardless of how the National Election goes in the United States--helped by the fact that Romney is leading both in fundraising and at the poll, and that the next cover of Newsweek will contain a death knell for a Second Obama Administration--Israel is prepared to go it alone in defence of its national existence. And DEBKAfile has reported that Iran is within about six weeks of having 250 kilograms of 20-percent grade uranium, exactly enough to build its first nuclear bomb.

That deadline prompted Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s comment Sunday, Aug. 12: “All threats against the home front are dwarfed by one – Iran must not be allowed to have nuclear arms!” Hence the leak by an unnamed Israeli security source Sunday, Aug. 12, disclosing Iran’s progress in developing the detonator and fuses for a nuclear warhead ready for the Shehab-3 ballistic missiles capable of reaching Israel.

The Obama administration continues to waffle about its willingness to stand by Israel when the preemptive attack occurs; apparently they think they have the Jewish Vote sewed up, or that by such posturing they can postpone any such attack until after the November Elections. But Israel is not going to wait; November may well be to late.

So, we have three forces at work:
1) In Iran, government forces are feverishly working to have an operational nuclear-tipped missile capable of striking Dimona as soon as possible. The sooner they can launch it, the less Israel will be prepared.
 2) In Israel, government forces are feverishly preparing for long-distance strikes against Bushehr, Natanz, and/or Fordo, and the retaliatory strikes sure to come from Iran, Lebanon, and possibly Syria and even Egypt. The sooner they can launch them, the less likelihood of Iran having a nuclear weapon to with which to shoot back.
3) In America, government forces are simultaneously:
a) working to undermine Iran's capability for a nuclear first strike
b) working to undermine Israel's ability to launch a surprise preemptive strike
c) working to arm Israel against the Iranian attack which is sure to come, whether or not Israel strikes first.

The war only awaits a convergence of All Systems Are Go signals from Israel and at least one of the other two countries. Should the US and Israel agree on an attack, it will commence forthwith. Should Iran reach the level of preparedness that Israel is at, the preemptive strike will be launched unilaterally. The only other possibility is that Iran is further ahead than anyone knows, and will preemptively launch the first nuclear-tipped missile ever to be used in warfare.

If that does happen, it's going to be in the next few weeks.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Kevin DeAnna on "Chick-fil-A Conservatism"

CounterChristian America no longer exists.
America may have a Christian majority. The country’s heritage and institutions may be inseparable from Christianity. Many of the leading figures in our public life may even profess to be followers of Christ. None of this changes the fact that Christian Americans are losing the long struggle to define the country. More importantly, they will continue to lose as long as they pretend the country is still theirs.

Conservatives celebrated prematurely after the huge turnout of Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day. The “guilty as charged” Christian chain may have set sales records and homosexual protests may have fizzled, but this was only a tactical victory in a long struggle. Leftists and their supporters are already winning more strategic victories. The first sign of things to come was the decision by Davidson College to suspend Chick-fil-A from operating on campus. The school stressed that there was no final decision but that they wanted more “student input” about building an “inclusive community.” As a veteran college activist on controversial issues, take it from me that conservatives are outgunned on campus.

At many colleges and universities, the only right-of-center group is the College Republicans, which of course is primarily interested in electing anyone who has an “R” next to his name. Leftists have a wide variety of ideological and political groups to utilize, as well as a vast network of nominally “apolitical” multicultural and sexual groups that receive large amounts of funding and official campus support. Even the other right-of-center groups that do exist are not going to touch this issue. As reported in a recent story in the New York Times, campus conservatives mostly ignore social issues, while some libertarian groups even define homosexuality as central to their cause.

While some of this is out of belief, much more is out of fear. There is a well-funded campus infrastructure in place to support progressive social beliefs, and there is nothing in support of social conservatives. It’s far easier – and safer – to limit activism to harmless quibbling about free trade. The leftist counter-offensive will not be limited to Davidson. At least 30 other colleges have had petitions started to drive Chick-fil-A off campus. It has nothing to do with what the majority wants or even freedom of speech. The fact remains that the progressive left generally has a structural advantage in campus battles, and the campus right is generally interested in economic issues. A militant minority always triumphs against an apathetic majority, and I would not be surprised to see Chick-fil-A successfully purged from most campuses within the next year.

Even off campus, conservatives face structural disadvantages. Mitt Romney was notably silent about the issue, preferring to talk about the economy. This is probably because many of his most prominent financial backers are also backing referendums to legalize homosexual marriage in several states. Nor is this some kind of an exception – the most important group in intimidating the Republican legislature in New York into passing gay marriage were the rich Republican donors straight out of an Occupy parody about the 1 percent.

 Conservatives and libertarians can take solace in rhetoric about “limited government” and “freedom of speech,” but the truth is more complicated. The hard reality is that what is and is not acceptable to say is a product of power, not free choice. Culture is a product as much as any plastic toy, the outcome of conflict and dialogue among educational, media, social and religious institutions. What Lenin called the “Commanding Heights of the Economy” are not nearly as important as the “Commanding Heights of the Culture,” and Christians and traditionalists need to realize they are all in enemy hands, especially on the campuses.

The beliefs of a society don’t just develop organically – they are imposed. This is why the left doesn’t win through open debate in the marketplace of ideas. It wins by cutting off access, funding and legitimacy from any groups or individuals that defy the egalitarian zeitgeist. This is why, tactically, they are right to oppose Chick-fil-A and drive it off campuses. This is why they were correct to pressure business into dropping support for the American Legislative Exchange Council following the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman controversy. This is why conservatives ignore corporations like Wal-Mart, Facebook, Home Depot and News Corp. (parent company of Fox News) donating to the likes of Al Sharpton at their peril. This is why no matter how many referendums, primaries or general elections conservatives win, it never seems to change anything.

Unfortunately, progressives are right. By driving Chick-fil-A off campuses, by denying funds to pro-family groups, by making where you go to lunch a political decision, they are shaping the culture (and electorate) of the future. It’s uncomfortable to admit, but the personal is political, and whether it’s controlled by the government or not has little to do with it. It’s bigger than the battle over marriage. Politics is about who, not what, and remaining neutral simply means that others will determine the kind of world you and your children will live in. It doesn’t matter if the majority of Americans are Christians or conservatives or patriots – the people in charge are not. The game is rigged. Flip over the table.

**************************************end quote**************

Only if Conservatives are willing to be arrested and jailed in such large numbers will they be able to bring about real change. And unfortunately, the Left is ready and waiting. The only way to prevent the Left from pulling off the mass internment of Conservatives is if the Conservative policemen immediately join the resistance, while they still have guns. This would throw a major monkey wrench in the plans of the Left to disarm, then jail everybody who disagrees with their agenda. Next time a policeman pulls you over, ask him if he'd be willing to arrest you just for eating at Chick-fil-A. If he says no, ask him if he'd be willing to shoot anyone who orders him to anyway. If he won't, he's already sold out to the dark side--he just doesn't realize it yet

Disclaimer: The White Man does not advocate the use of force in resisting the government. But by all means, if you are determined to do so anyway, at least do it when it will do some good.

Outliving a "Death Sentence"

Counter In an earlier post, I wrote about prisoners outliving their "life" sentences. In this post, I'll address the matter of patients outliving their "death sentences."

Arthur Mishkin was diagnosed with juvenile (insulin-dependent) diabetes at the age of 19. That was in 1942, when insulin treatment was still in its infancy. No child with diabetes had ever survived to adulthood, so even with treatment, doctors didn't give him much of a chance of ever marrying or having children. They certainly didn't expect him to live to see any grandchildren. Diagnosis of juvenile diabetes was still considered a Death Sentence.

Well, Mr. Mishkin is now 89 years old, still diabetic, and now finally succumbing to the ravages of age. He has children and grandchildren. He's definitely outlived his "Death Sentence."

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Ken Miller's piece about peace

CounterInterest in the Kenneth Miller case is higher than ever. Most of what I've seen concerning the case is already online, but here, for those who haven't seen them, are excerpts from a letter he wrote following his conviction (he's approved it for publication):

"I asked my boys as we were preparing for bed in the motel room whether they would be comfortable sleeping in the same room as a convicted felon. They didn't seem to have any problem with it at all.

A convicted felon. As of August 14, 2012, that's what I am. What about all those prayers around the world today that didn't get answered--or did they get answered? I say yes, a thousand times YES, they got answered. For one, I and my family have felt so incredibly lifted up by all those prayers around the world that we are able to be irrationally happy in the middle of a conviction and now a civil action lawsuit.

Just after the verdict was read, while we were sitting there trying to absorb it all, Sara Starr--bless her (and I mean that)--walked over to the defense table where I was still sitting and served me another thick legal document which charges me along with about 10 other people and organizations with various racketeering charges in regards to Isabella's disappearance. That should have finished me off, but instead I felt irrationally calm and at peace. Right now I'm just about ready to head off to bed for a good nights sleep. And I intend to sleep real good.

I know that the prayers of people affected the outcome of the trial. I believe the prayers being offered were done in yieldedness to the will of God. We remember that throughout history advances in the Kingdom have almost always been preceded by struggle and tribulation. God works not in spite of persecution and tribulation, but by and through it. I don't know how God wants His kingdom to advance through this, but it will, mark my words, if we stay true to Him."

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Outliving a 'life' sentence

In an earlier post, I mentioned that Thomas Hagan had been in prison longer than any other murderer I was aware of, before being released after forty-five years. It turns out that he was beat out by at least one person, a woman named Betty Smithey, who was sentenced in 1963 to life in prison without parole.

As I predicted, "life in prison without parole" only means that if the life in question happens to be shorter than average. Upon reaching the ripe old age of sixty-nine, Betty was judged to be no longer a danger to society, and has been released after forty-nine years in the Arizona penal system.

I'm still not aware of anyone in America who has served even fifty years of a life sentence for murder.

As mentioned in an update to the earlier post, William Heirens pleaded guilty in order to escape a possible execution in 1946--back before they stopped executing everyone convicted of murder in open court. His youth, combined with the youth of his alleged victims' family members, enabled him to serve sixty-five years in prison without ever being approved for parole over the objections of the survivors. So I need to change that last sentence to:

 I'm still not aware of anyone in America who has served even fifty years of a "life sentence" handed down following conviction by a jury--whether or not it was a "life sentence without possibility of parole." And I expect that number to continue to drop.

Given that the US is the only country in the world that sentences juveniles to a "life sentence without possibility of parole," and the mandatory five-year review sounds suspiciously like a parole hearing, I don't see how anyone will ever break Heirens' record.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Crash alert!

From what my sources are telling me, it appears that Congress' inability to pass a budget means that the bond market is headed for a freefall.

Stand by for some wild gyrations in the price of everything subject to such.