December 19, 2014

Cuban Sanctions and Decades of Communism Seriously Weakened Its Government

Filed under: Activism,National Security,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:08 am

At the Daily Signal:

Contrary to what President Obama has asserted, U.S. sanctions have worked. Communist Cuba is so economically weak it cannot export Marxism-Leninism as in the past, and pro-democracy advocates have become emboldened.

For more than five decades, presidents, Democratic and Republican, politically isolated and economically sanctioned Communist Cuba for the best of reasons. Here are four of them:

1. Cuba has been a communist prison since Fidel Castro came to power. From 1959 through the late 1990s, more than 100,000 Cubans were placed in forced labor camps, prisons, and other places of incarceration. Between 15,000 and 17,000 people were shot. …

2. Communist Cuba exported Marxism-Leninism throughout Latin America, in Colombia, Guatemala, Venezuela, and especially Nicaragua, which was taken over by the Marxist Sandinistas in the late 1970s. Another target was the small island nation of Grenada … As a Venezuelan communist leader explained, the Cuban revolution was like a “detonator.”

3. Communist Cuba often provided the ground troops for the Soviet Union’s strategy of inciting Third World revolution, especially in Africa. …

4. Communist Cuba brought the world to the brink of nuclear war in 1962 when it allowed the Soviet Union to build sites for offensive nuclear missiles aimed at major cities in the United States. … Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev has said that Castro requested a Soviet nuclear attack on the United States.

… President Obama pledged to lift economic sanctions and establish diplomatic relations at the precise moment when Venezuela’s economic miseries seriously threatened its huge billion-dollar subsidies of Cuba and when more and more Cubans were pressuring the Castro regime to allow fundamental human freedoms.

The Castro regime was on the ropes, but in the words of Cuban dissident Yoani Sanchez, “Castroism has won.” Today, Fidel must be smiling and lighting up a large El Rey del Mondo cigar in his Havana palace.

Kowtowing to enemies and mistreating friends has been what the Obama administration has been all about from its beginning. Now the President wants to save an enemy which would have nuked us if it had its way, with no apparent conditions.

December 16, 2014

Vox’s Max Fisher: Asking Muslims to Condemn Jihadist Terror Is ‘Bigoted and Islamophobic’

Today, the world has learned that terrorists with the Taliban, the group of Islamic fundamentalist jihadists who have rained terror on Afghanistan and Pakistan for nearly two decades, “attacked a school in Peshawar, killing 141 people, 132 of them children.” The death toll will almost certainly rise as some of the 114 children the BBC has reported are injured fail to survive.

But don’t ask Muslims to condemn this cowardly attack on innocents. If you do, you’ll upset Max Fisher at Vox, who just yesterday (HT Twitchy), in exquisite timing, insisted that it’s “bigoted and Islamophobic” to expect anything of the sort:

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Can’t Wait to Hear Hillary Clinton Tell Us …

Filed under: National Security,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 12:10 pm

… why we should “empathize with” the “perspective and point of view” of the monsters who did this:

Pakistan Taliban: Peshawar school attack leaves 141 dead

December 10, 2014

Pace’s Pity Party at AP: Obama Still Handicapped by Bush 43′s ‘Legacy,’ ‘Security Apparatus’

Nearly six years into Barack Obama’s presidency, it’s still George W. Bush’s fault.

Early Wednesday morning, Julie Pace at the Associated Press proved yet again why it is more than appropriate to characterize the wire service where she works as the Administration’s Press. The headline at Pace’s story tells us that poor President Barack Obama still has to confront the “Bush legacy,” and is still stuck with his wars and “big chunks of Bush’s national security apparatus.” Cry me a river, Julie. One of Pace’s more important omissions is the fact that the enhanced interrogations program Senate Democrats are decrying was a creation of none other than Bill Clinton.

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November 28, 2014

LAT Blog Writer: Thanksgiving Is Time to Debate ‘Crazy Right-Wing Uncle’

Sometimes, one has to remember that op-ed writers don’t always get to pick their headlines, though I would hope that they’re allowed to register their objections. So it’s not clear that Los Angeles Times guest blogger Joel Silberman is responsible for the headline at his Monday blog post about how, or even whether, to deal with relatives who disagree with you politically on Thanksgiving.

But Silberman’s resume indicates that he would probably have been comfortable with the headline used: “What to do if your crazy right-wing uncle comes for Thanksgiving.” Excerpts and some background on Silberman follow the jump (bolds and numbered tags are mine; links in final two excerpted paragraphs are in original):

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November 25, 2014

AP Initially Fails to Report That Ferguson Mayor Begged for Guard Help

It looks like the Associated Press, aka the Administration’s Press, is choosing to become an active participant in the covering for the failure by Missouri Governor Jay Nixon to carry out his most basic duty as the state’s chief executive in a timely fashion.

The AP’s unbylined three-paragraph report published at 2:12 PM ET this afternoon acts as if the Guard had a meaningful presence in Ferguson last night. It didn’t. It also describes the looters, thugs and miscreants who ran wild last night as “protesters” and “demonstrators.”

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NYT’s Cooper Sanitizes and Spins Report on Hagel’s Sacking for Print Edition

The New York Times continued its annoying, Winston Smith-like habit of rewriting history in virtually real time yesterday.

Helene Cooper’s original Monday afternoon report on Chuck Hagel’s sacking as Secretary of Defense is no longer available at the Times. However, since I anticipated that the paper would conduct a comprehensive cleanup yesterday when I posted on the paper’s original coverage, it is available here at my web host for fair use and discussion purposes. Cooper’s Tuesday Page 1 print edition replacement is starkly different from her original effort. Side-by-side comparisons of certain sections follow the jump.

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November 24, 2014

Huh? NYT Says Hagel ‘Wasn’t Fired,’ But Obama ‘Made the Decision to Remove’ Him

As is the case with so many executive changes in both the public and the private sector, there is vagueness in the circumstances surrounding the end of Chuck Hagel’s stint as Obama administration Secretary of Defense.

While it's not unusual for an exec to be asked to resign to avoid being formally fired, which was apparently the case with Hagel, the higher-ups involved are usually smart enough to pay tribute to the departed official and move on without letting contrary information get out. Apparently not this White House, and not the New York Times — unless their joint mission is to subtly discredit Hagel. The contradictions in today's report by Helene Cooper (saved here for future reference and fair use purposes) seem too obvious to be accidental (bolds are mine):

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November 7, 2014

AP Stories 25 Years After Berlin Wall’s Fall Almost Completely Excludes Reagan

A search at the Associated Press’s national site tonight on “Berlin Wall” (not in quotes) returns 14 stories.

Changing that search to “Berlin Wall Reagan” reduces that number to one. That single story is a short, seven-paragraph item about sections of the wall which are on display in different parts of the world. Reagan’s name gets mentioned as follows:

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October 23, 2014

Vox’s Amanda Taub: Reax to Canada Attack Shows ‘We’ Are Biased Against Islam

Taking the web site even further down the path of useless, pretentious collection of hackery than it already is — and that’s quite far — Vox.com has tweeted (HT Twitchy) that “Our obsession with the Ottawa shooter’s religion reveals more about us than about him.” It must be a shock to their system to learn that a lot of “us” would rather not be cut down by a member of the alleged “Religion of Peace.”

The site’s underlying writeup by Amanda Taub, its “Senior Sadness Correspondent” (not kidding) accuses “us” of jumping to conclusions, when there was plenty of evidence from the get-go that the attack was jihadist in nature:

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AP’s Headline After Driver Plows Into Crowd: ‘Israeli Police Shoot Man’

Here’s the first sentence from an Associated Press dispatch relating to a breaking news story out of Israel: “OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: Israeli police say they have shot a man whose car slammed into a crowded train stop in east Jerusalem, in what they suspect was an intentional attack.” (“OCCUPIED JERUSALEM”" Really? — Ed.) The story goes on to note that nine people were wounded.

From all of this, the wire service ran with the following initial headline: “Israeli police shoot man in east Jerusalem.” That’s right. Nothing about the man being the driver of a car which plowed into a crowd. Well guys, if you play with fire, you’re sometimes going to get burned. In this case, more like scorched, as one of the nine wounded, a three-month-old baby, died. The initial headline, though ultimately changed, more than likely stayed with the story for a brief time at some outlets as additional developments unfolded. Excerpts from the latest report, as carried at Yahoo, follow the jump.

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Exquisite Timing: USAT Runs Op-Ed on ‘Beware the Christian Extremists’

Sandwiched in between two domestic terrorist attacks by Islamic extremists in Canada during the past three days, USA Today ran a Tuesday op-ed which appeared in Wednesday’s print edition by Mary Zeiss Stange called “Beware the Christian Extremists.”

With all due respect, ma’am, we’ve got bigger worries. But in Ms. Stange’s world, Christian “religious extremism taken to potentially lethal ends” is really the “primary threat to homeland security.” She castigates the news media, which in her view “have been remarkably slow when it comes to zeroing in on the pervasive reality of hate-based Christian extremism,” because “It is easier, after all, to blame the un-American other.”

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October 22, 2014

AP Downplays Key Poll Finding: Dems’ Advantage Among Women Is Gone

In relaying the results of their polling partnership’s latest survey, Associated Press polling director Jennifer Agiesta and reporter Emily Swanson held their most important finding until their report’s seventh paragraph.

Despite their effort to downplay it, Matt Drudge, whose nose for genuine news is legendary, spotted it. Accordingly, his current headline screams: “POLL SHOCK: WOMEN WANT REPUBLICANS!”

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October 20, 2014

Why ‘It Matters’ (102014)

Politico (HT Breitbart):

POLITICO poll: Alarm, anxiety as election looms

An overwhelming majority of voters in the most competitive 2014 elections say it feels as if events in the United States are “out of control” and expressed mounting alarm about terrorism, anxiety about Ebola and harsh skepticism of both political parties only three weeks before the Nov. 4 midterms.

In a POLITICO poll testing the hardest-fought states and congressional districts of the year, two-thirds of likely voters said they feel that the United States has lost control of its major challenges. Only 36 percent said the country is “in a good position to meet its economic and national security” hurdles.

If no individual issue has come to define this election — like health care in the 2010 campaign or the Iraq War in 2006 — the accumulation of disparate fears has created a sense of pessimism and frustration across the midterm landscape.

None of this will get any better if the vast majority of the American people sit this election out as usual.

That’s why “It Matters.”

Bill Whittle: Fear of Ebola

Filed under: Health Care,National Security,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 6:40 am

Good News: Ebola probably isn’t going to be a serious problem here, even if there continues to be an incompetent government effort to fight it.

Bad news: We have an incompetent government which is failing to communicate the truths you will see in the following video (transcript here):