Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Al Gore frozen out of the Senate

Newsflash from the Drudge Report, file this one under irony.
Mon Jan 26 2009 17:59:26 ET

Al Gore is scheduled before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday morning to once again testify on the 'urgent need' to combat global warming.

But Mother Nature seems ready to freeze the proceedings.

A 'Winter Storm Watch' has been posted for the nation's capitol and there is a potential for significant snow... sleet... or ice accumulations.

"I can't imagine the Democrats would want to showcase Mr. Gore and his new findings on global warming as a winter storm rages outside," a Republican lawmaker emailed the DRUDGE REPORT. "And if the ice really piles up, it will not be safe to travel."

A spokesman for Sen. John Kerry, who chairs the committee, was not immediately available to comment on contingency plans.

Global warming advocates have suggested this year's wild winter spells are proof of climate change.

Sunday, 25 January 2009

Sunday's Truth

"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction."

Proverbs 1:7 (King James Version)

Saturday, 24 January 2009

Today's Truth

"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote."

Benjamin Franklin - (1706-1790)
US Founding Father, author, printer, satirist, political theorist, politician, scientist, inventor, statesman and diplomat.

Obama - rank Constitutional hypocrite?

My friends, President Obama is more than familiar with the Constitution of the United States of America, not only is the former Senator now the President, he also taught Constitutional Law as a Professor at the University of Chicago Law School for more than a decade.

In his Inaugural Address he said the following about the Oath of Office he had just taken:

The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forebears, and true to our founding documents.

He continued, later in his address:

Our founding fathers faced with perils that we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience's sake.

All very interesting, but here's what I don't get. We now hear that in a meeting with Congressional Republicans on Friday called to discuss the proposed stimulus package, the President warned them about their sources of information by saying:

You can't just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done.

That's not all, it is also reported that he said to fellow Democrats:

If we don't get this done we could lose seats and I could lose re-election. But we can't let people like Rush Limbaugh stall this. That's how things don't get done in this town.

So there you have it, a Professor of Constitutional Law becomes President of the United States of America and tells his fellow Americans of the importance of the Constitution, especially at times of crisis no matter what expediency might dictate. He then proceeds totally to ignore any concept of the Separation of Powers riding roughshod over the Constitution's system of "checks and balances" to tell other elected officials how to behave, despite their consciences, constituents and mandates, and ties it to his re-election chances in 2012.

Nice. Obama, the change America needed?

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Today's Truth

"No man will ever bring out of the Presidency the reputation which carries him into it."

Thomas Jefferson - (1743-1826)
US Founding Father, drafted the Declaration of Independence, 3rd US President

Hitchens isn't sorry that George W. Bush was President

My friends, allow me to direct you to the latest piece by that always excellent champion of truth, Christopher Hitchens at Slate.com (Why I’m not sorry that George W. Bush beat Al Gore and John Kerry, January 19 2009). On the eve of the inauguration of the candidate for whom he voted he skewers, with typical intellectual honesty, the lie that the world would necessarily have been a better place had either of Dubya’s opponents beaten him.

Unmoved by the current tidal wave of hatred directed towards the former President, Hitchens begins:

“…on the last day of his presidency, I want to say why I still do not wish that Al Gore had beaten George W. Bush in 2000 or that John Kerry had emerged the victor in 2004.

“We are never invited to ask ourselves [in Oliver Stone’s W.] what would have happened if the Democrats had been in power that fall. But it might be worth speculating for a second. The Effective Death Penalty and Anti-Terrorism Act, rushed through both Houses by Bill Clinton after the relative pin prick of the Oklahoma City bombing, was correctly described by the American Civil Liberties Union as the worst possible setback for the cause of citizens' rights. Given that precedent and multiplying it for the sake of proportion, I think we can be pretty sure that wiretapping and water-boarding would have become household words, perhaps even more quickly than they did, and that we might even have heard a few more liberal defenses of the practice. I don't know if Gore-Lieberman would have thought of using Guantanamo Bay, but that, of course, raises the interesting question—now to be faced by a new administration—of where exactly you do keep such actually or potentially dangerous customers, especially since you are not supposed to "rendition" them. There would have been a nasty prison somewhere or a lot of prisoners un-taken on the battlefield, you can depend on that.

“We might have avoided the Iraq war, even though both Bill Clinton and Al Gore had repeatedly and publicly said that another and conclusive round with Saddam Hussein was, given his flagrant defiance of all the relevant U.N. resolutions, unavoidably in our future. And the inconvenient downside to avoiding the Iraq intervention is that a choke point of the world economy would still be controlled by a psychopathic crime family that kept a staff of WMD experts on hand and that paid for jihadist suicide bombers around the region. In his farewell interviews, President Bush hasn't been able to find much to say for himself on this point, but I think it's a certainty that historians will not conclude that the removal of Saddam Hussein was something that the international community ought to have postponed any further. (Indeed, if there is a disgrace, it is that previous administrations left the responsibility undischarged.)

“…And the collapse of our financial system has its roots in a long-ago attempt, not disgraceful in and of itself, to put home ownership within reach even of the least affluent. So the old question "compared to what?" does not allow too much glibness.”
The general thrust of the lack of his regret is that nobody can say, hand on heart, things would have been better without Bush. It’s not intended as an actual defence, merely an appeal for honesty when those reviewing his record take it as Gospel truth that the alternatives would have been better. Why does he want such honesty (other than for its own sake)? He concludes:

"Inescapable as it is, "compared to what?" isn't much of a defense. And nor has this column been intended exactly as a defense, either. It's just that there's an element of hubris in all this current hope-mongering and that I am beginning to be a little bit afraid to think of what Wednesday morning will feel like."

Former President Chirac mauled by critic

In fact, my friends, the attack was so brutal that the 76 year old ex-President was temporarily hospitalised for treatment to bites suffered.

And now they are accusing the attacker of being mentally ill, clinically depresssed apparently.

There are those around the world who might, in contrast, be thinking the assailant was merely a balanced critic.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Today's Truth

"In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

"'Let it be told to the future world...that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive...that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it].'

"America. In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations."

Barack Hussein Obama (born August 4 1961)
Forty-fourth President of the United States of America

As with all the best inauguration speeches, a message to the world as well as to America

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Barack Obama - restoring the last best hope of Earth

So today, my friends, is finally the day that Barack Obama becomes President of the United States of America. It's a time when everyone, even those who opposed his candidacy in favour of John McCain (or, dare I suggest it, Hillary Clinton) should come together and wish him well, not least because of what he represents.

To this end I think it is worth reminding ourselves of the words of London's popular mayor, Conservative politician Boris Johnson, published in The Daily Telegraph last October:

Obama deserves to win because he seems talented, compassionate, and because he offers the hope of rejuvenating the greatest country on earth in the eyes of the rest of us. All those are sufficient reasons for desiring his victory.

And then there is the final, additional reason, the glaring reason, and that is race. Huge numbers of voters, whether they admit it to themselves or not, will hesitate to choose Barack Obama for President because he is black. And then there are millions of white Americans who will undoubtedly vote Obama precisely because he is black, and because he stands for the change and the progress they want to see in their society.

After centuries of friction, prejudice, tension, hatred - you name it, they've had it - America is teetering on the brink of a triumph. If Obama wins, then the United States will have at last come a huge and maybe decisive step closer to achieving the dream of Martin Luther King, of a land where people are judged not on the colour of their skin but by the content of their character.If Obama wins, then black people the world over will be able to see how a gifted man has been able to smash through the ultimate glass ceiling.

If Obama wins, then it will be simply fatuous to claim that there are no black role models in politics or government, because there is no higher role model than the President of the United States.

If Barack Hussein Obama is successful next month, then we could even see the beginning of the end of race-based politics, with all the grievance-culture and special interest groups and political correctness that come with it.

If Obama wins, he will have established that being black is as relevant to your ability to do a hard job as being left-handed or ginger-haired, and he will have re-stablished America's claim to be the last, best hope of Earth.

I couldn't have put it better myself.

God bless America.

Today's Truth

"It is better to cherish virtue and humanity, by leaving much to free will, even with some loss to the object, than to attempt to make men mere machines and instruments of a political benevolence. The world on the whole will gain by a liberty, without which virtue cannot exist."

Edmund Burke - (1729-1797)
Anglo-Irish statesman, orator and writer, the 'Father of Modern Conservatism'

Monday, 19 January 2009

Let's be honest now - Bush's surge worked

So, my friends, says Iraq war critic and Washington Post columnist Peter Beinart in his column yesterday (Admit It: The Surge Worked, January 18 2009).

As he starts:

"It's no longer a close call: President Bush was right about the surge. According to Michael O'Hanlon and Jason Campbell of the Brookings Institution, the number of Iraqi war dead was 500 in November of 2008, compared with 3,475 in November of 2006. That same month, 69 Americans died in Iraq; in November 2008, 12 did.

"Violence in Anbar province is down more than 90 percent over the past two years, the New York Times reports. Returning to Iraq after long absences, respected journalists Anthony Shadid and Dexter Filkins say they barely recognize the place."
Of course that's not to say that the surge is exclusively responsible for the improvement, nor that it is permanent:

"Al-Qaeda alienated the Sunni tribes; Moqtada al-Sadr's Mahdi Army decided to stand down; the United States assassinated key insurgent and militia leaders, all of which mattered as much if not more than the increase in U.S. troops. And the decline in violence isn't necessarily permanent. Iraq watchers warn that communal distrust remains high; if someone strikes a match, civil war could again rage out of control."
However, the crucial point remains, Bush's surge won the day. There are those who would rather not give credit where credit's due, but not the liberal war critic writing in The Post:

"...even if the calm endures, that still doesn't justify the Bush administration's initial decision to go to war, which remains one of the great blunders in American foreign policy history. But if Iraq overall represents a massive stain on Bush's record, his decision to increase America's troop presence in late 2006 now looks like his finest hour. Given the mood in Washington and the country as a whole, it would have been far easier to do the opposite. Politically, Bush took the path of most resistance. He endured an avalanche of scorn, and now he has been vindicated. He was not only right; he was courageous."
So why, then, should the Democrats swallow their pride and accept that Bush was correct in his later actions?

"Doing so would remind Democrats that no one political party, or ideological perspective, has a monopoly on wisdom. That recognition can be the difference between ambition -- which the Obama presidency must exhibit -- and hubris, which it can ill afford.
"Being proven right too many times is dangerous. It breeds intellectual arrogance and complacency. As the Democrats prepare to take over Washington, they should publicly acknowledge that on the surge, they were wrong. That acknowledgment may not do much for Bush's legacy, but it could do wonders for their own."
Of course, I won't be holding my breath waiting for certain liberal war critics to follow this advice.

Man wants to lick Hooters...

Incredible. Why, my friends, is he so fussed? Are there really no other restaurants that will employ this man or is he just a troublemaker? And if the latter what's his purpose? Political correctness or just a way to milk Hooters of America for cash via the courts?

Mike McNeil, vice president of marketing for Hooters, hits the nail on the head:
"The good news is that when this happened the last time, Hooters benefitted from an avalanche of positive publicity and public support for keeping Hooters Girls, well, girls. If we lose this go around, you can next expect hairy legged guys in the Rockettes to line up and male models in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. You wonder why people just can't leave good things alone."

Today's Truth

"The financing of current government spending by debt is equivalent to an 'eating up' of our national capital value... By financing current public outlay by debt, we are, in effect, chopping up the apple trees for firewood, thereby reducing the yield of the orchard forever.

"...The person who is faced with a tax bill to finance interest charges...will reckon only on the simply observed fact that income that he or she might otherwise use is being taken away in taxes. The result is precisely analagous to the apple orchard example introduced earlier. If the yield of three trees under a person's nominal ownership is committed to debt service, it is fully equivalent to having an orchard with three fewer trees."

James M. Buchanan - (born October 2 1919)
Nobel Prize-winning American economist and educator

So, what's your current share of Gordon Brown's debt?

Sunday, 18 January 2009

Sunday's Truth

"Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. "

Isaiah 41:10 (King James Version)

With events coming this week, perhaps something to think about in the same context as "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself"?

Friday, 16 January 2009

Israeli military sorry for dead citizens in Gaza

My friends, something of a contrast here.

On the one hand you have Hamas deliberately targetting Israeli citizens in their plans for ridding the globe of Israel as per their Charter (the Covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement, 18 August 1988):
Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it.
On the other hand you have the Israeli military who, despite Hamas fighters wearing civilian clothing while fighting Israeli troops and using schools, mosques and crowded residential areas for cover intentionally making it hard to keep ordinary residents out of harm's way, are trying to avoid hitting noncombatants:
Capt. Orr, 25, felt that aborting some of his targets for fear of harming civilians were among his proudest achievements.

"The ones I remember are when I have locked in on a target and I fire and then at the last second I see a child in my cross hairs and I divert the missile," he said. "That leaves a mark."

..."We work very hard to keep civilian casualties as low as possible," he said. "Each missile we shoot is pinpointed to the very meter we want it to go."
It's worth reading the whole article, and then thinking about what people mean when they repeat the leftist mantra, "we are all Hamas now".

Today's Truth

"If the only motive was to help people who could not afford education, advocates of government involvement would have simply proposed tuition subsidies."

Milton Friedman - (1912-2006)
Nobel Prize-winning American economist

Thursday, 15 January 2009

PETA website upgrade

My friends, they've changed the PETA website and it looks a lot more appealing now.

So not all Tories are insane then

Not when they've groups like this in the party, my friends.

History will show that George W Bush was right

My friends, that great man, the historian Andrew Roberts, has been stirring the pot once more with his article in today’s Daily Telegraph. In it he makes the case that the Presidency of George W Bush is going to be viewed better by impartial historians than by the contemporary commentariat. As he says:

“In the avalanche of abuse and ridicule that we are witnessing in the media assessments of President Bush's legacy, there are factors that need to be borne in mind if we are to come to a judgment that is not warped by the kind of partisan hysteria that has characterised this issue on both sides of the Atlantic.

“The first is that history, by looking at the key facts rather than being distracted by the loud ambient noise of the 24-hour news cycle, will probably hand down a far more positive judgment on Mr Bush's presidency than the immediate, knee-jerk loathing of the American and European elites.”

He goes on to explain exactly why he holds this position. At some length, including the following passage:

“History will also take Mr Bush's verbal fumbling into account, reminding us that Ronald Reagan also mis-spoke regularly, but was still a fine president. The first MBA president, who had a higher grade-point average at Yale than John Kerry, Mr Bush's supposed lack of intellect will be seen to be a myth once the papers in his Presidential Library in the Southern Methodist University in Dallas are available.

“Films such as Oliver Stone's W, which portray him as a spitting, oafish frat boy who eats with his mouth open and is rude to servants, will be revealed by the diaries and correspondence of those around him to be absurd travesties, of this charming, interesting, beautifully mannered history buff who, were he not the most powerful man in the world, would be a fine person to have as a pal.

“Instead of Al Franken, history will listen to Bob Geldof praising Mr Bush's efforts over AIDS and malaria in Africa; or to Manmohan Singh, the prime minister of India, who told him last week: "The people of India deeply love you." And certainly to the women of Afghanistan thanking him for saving them from Taliban abuse, degradation and tyranny.”

I commend the article to you, and also the following thought:

“The historian’s first duties are sacrilege and the mocking of false gods. They are his indispensable instruments for establishing the truth.”

Jules Michelet - (1798-1874)
French historian

Source: History of France, 1833

Ireland's new fight for Home Rule

My friends, first we had the ex-Maoist President of Europe, José Manuel Barroso, telling us that he knew that the United Kingdom was closer to Euro entry than ever before, and he knew this because, as he said:

"I know that the majority are still opposed, but there is a period of consideration underway and the people who matter in Britain are currently thinking about it."

That's right, "the people who matter in Britain".

Now we have my good friend Lord Malloch-Brown, the Government appointed British Foreign Office Minister, explaining who are the people who matter in Europe:

"With 24 countries having approved the treaty, I am not sure whether the voters of Ireland should have a right of veto over the aspirations of all the other people of Europe. I am not sure whether that is, or is not democracy."

So there you go Ireland, you fought for and won independence from British rule but it now seems to have been replaced with rule from Brussels.

Here's hoping sanity prevails in October and, once more, Irish voters kick the EU Commissioners where it hurts.

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Today's Truth

"When those who are against conservative policies don't have sufficient opposition arguments, they call the love of freedom selfish. Of course it is - in the sense that breathing's selfish."

P.J. O'Rourke - (born November 14 1947)
American humourist

Source: Why I Believe What I Believe - Rolling Stone magazine, July 1995 edition

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Professor denies global warming theory

My friends, I see that the climate change dissenters can now count another amongst their number.

William Happer, the Cyrus Fogg Brackett Professor of Physics at Princeton University, is now a fully-fledged dissenter.
All the evidence I see is that the current warming of the climate is just like past warmings. In fact, it’s not as much as past warmings yet, and it probably has little to do with carbon dioxide, just like past warmings had little to do with carbon dioxide. I have spent a long research career studying physics that is closely related to the greenhouse effect, for example, absorption and emission of visible and infrared radiation, and fluid flow. Based on my experience, I am convinced that the current alarm over carbon dioxide is mistaken.
He was a former director of the Office of Energy Research (now the Office of Science) in the U.S. Department of Energy, but was sacked by Vice President Al Gore for having the temerity to question his stance on so-called climate change.

So much for scientific debate!

The Gaza Tunnel Business - who profits?

My friends, whenever I read about the tunnels used to smuggle goods between Egypt and Gaza I can't help but imagine the plucky PoWs of Stalag Luft III digging Tom, Dick and Harry to reach freedom in The Great Escape.

Well, as usual in these things, when you delve deeper than the superficially anti-Israel bias of the BBC you find the real facts behind their version of the truth.

Geoffrey Paul expands on this at the new Jewish Chronicle blog:

"A lot of people are going to lose out financially if the Gaza tunnel business is closed down. Unlike the BBC, I have a friend on the other side of the Israel/Gaza border and he tells me that the whole economy of the region will suffer if Hamas can no longer collect $2,500 for building a tunnel, plus the “tax” extracted for the goods which pass through those tunnels on the way from Egypt to Gaza. The goods – they can be anything from rockets to nappies – are assessed by Hamas tax collectors on their way through the system, the going rate being more for cigarettes than, say, for fruit or vegetables (rockets, of course, are tax free). Then there is a fee due to those who own the land close to the Egyptian border who allow tunnels to be built under their properties. The highest payment is demanded for passing a human being through from one side to the other. I have not seen them and therefore cannot vouch for the claim that there could be – or could have been – as many as 600 tunnels running from the Egyptian side of the border to the Gazan exits. Certainly, some of the tunnels exposed by the IDF have been fitted with sophisticated electronic travelators (you know the moving belts you hop on to get to your departure gate at Heathrow). I am not a bit surprised by the assessment that the value of goods smuggled through the tunnels during the past two years have approximated $600 million a year. Who will compensate the Hamas “tax collectors” for their loss of revenue (not to mention their colleagues on the Egyptian side who have waved the contraband assignments on their way) ? Most delighted of all if the tunnels go will be the two or three Beduin families which used to have a monopoly on cross-border smuggling in the Egypt-Gaza area using the celebrated “ships of the desert”, known less poetically as camels."

Today's Truth

"The more laws, the less justice."

Marcus Tullius Cicero - (106-43B.C.)
Roman orator, statesman and philosopher

Bear this in mind when you think of the estimated 3,600 new offences created by the Government in Britain since 1997, of which at least 1,036 can result in a prison sentence (according to an official answer given to Baroness Stern, a crossbench peer and former General Secretary of Penal Reform International).

Who are the victims of Gordon Brown's recession?

We all are, my friends, we all are.

But who is going to pay for the debt with which he now saddles us?

Clue here.

Monday, 12 January 2009

Today's Truth

"The law of liberty tends to abolish the reign of race over race, of faith over faith, of class over class. It is not the realisation of a political ideal: it is the discharge of a moral obligation."

English historian who served as Regius Professor of Modern History at Cambridge (1895-1902)

Source: Letter to Mary Gladstone, 24th April 1881

Hamas: In Their Own Voices

My friends, the video below is a compilation of MEMRI TV clips that aired prior to the current Gaza crisis. It includes statements by Hamas leaders calling for the annihilation of Israel and of all Jews, for death to America, and for the Islamic conquest of the world.

Featured are Hamas leader Khaled Mash'al, Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniya, Hamas MPs Mushir Al-Masri and Fathi Hamad, Hamas MP and cleric Yunis Al-Astal, Palestinian Legislative Council acting speaker Sheikh Ahmad Bahr, and Hamas clerics Wael Al-Zarad and Muhsen Abu 'Ita.

Viewers will also witness Hamas military training for adults and children, anti-American speeches at rallies including burning of the American flag and calls of support for "The Afghan Mujahidin", Hamas Al-Aqsa TV children's shows, and more.

Probably worth bearing in mind next time you see deluded liberals waving around "We Are Hamas Now" banners.

Obama - countdown to disappointment

My friends, everyone knows there are plenty out there who think Obama is the Messiah, but how long will it take before they realise that he is, in fact, just a very naughty boy?

With all the emotional baggage invested in his Presidency, with the cathartic release offered by the removal of the Republicans from the White House, how long will it take for him to let down his global fan club? Well, it seems that he doesn't even have to wait to get his feet under Oval Office desk before his first disappointment hits the fan (Obama axes Gitmo from 100-day list, The Australian, January 12 2009)...
BARACK Obama said last night he did not expect to honour his campaign pledge to close the Guantanamo Bay prison camp in his first 100 days in office, but the US president-elect reiterated his vow to shut the facility eventually.

The timetable shift came as Mr Obama hit back at critics of hiseconomic rescue plan, saying tax cuts and spending would create as many as 4.1 million jobs, up from the three million he said were needed to lift the country from recession.

"It is more difficult than I think a lot of people realise," Mr Obama told American ABC television's This Week, when asked about his promise to close the controversial military prison, which still holds about 250 terrorist suspects.

"I think it's going to take some time and our legal teams are working in consultation with our national security apparatus, as we speak, to help design exactly what we need to do."
What's next?

Sunday, 11 January 2009

So who appointed Tim Ireland as judge, jury and executioner?

My friends, I was reading this post at Bloggerheads.com and a thought struck me.

My good friend Tim Ireland seems to have appointed himself as 'Moral Arbiter in Chief for Bloggers', a trait he has displayed on previous occasions when telling off naughty bloggers for failing to live up to a set of strict blogging rules which appear to exist nowhere other than in his head. Of course this does make it rather tricky for people to abide by these laws but never mind, Tim is always there to keep us on the straight and narrow.

Funnily enough the majority of his ire seems to be directed at right of centre bloggers (the likes of Guido, Iain Dale, Dizzy, Donal Blaney and Shane Greer being regular targets), but I'm sure that's just a coincidence.

Perhaps Tim might indulge us all and give us a brain dump of his wisdom on the subject, maybe in the form of 'Tim's 10 Golden Rules of Blogging'. How about it?

Sunday's Truth

"As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly."

Proverbs 26:11 (King James Version)

Perhaps a lesson for certain politicians who think the Keynesian Economics of yesteryear offer solutions to today's financial woes?

Friday, 9 January 2009

Today's Truth

"In the hot days immediately after the fatwa, with Salman himself on the run and the TV screens filled with images of burning books and writhing mustaches, I was stopped by a female Muslim interviewer and her camera crew and asked an ancient question: “Is nothing sacred?” I can’t remember quite what I answered then, but I know what I would say now. “No, nothing is sacred. And even if there were to be something called sacred, we mere primates wouldn’t be able to decide which book or which idol or which city was the truly holy one. Thus, the only thing that should be upheld at all costs and without qualification is the right of free expression, because if that goes, then so do all other claims of right as well.” I also think that human life has its sacrosanct aspect, and though I can think of many circumstances in which I would take a life, the crime of writing a work of fiction is not a justification (even in the case of Ludlum) that I could ever entertain."

Christopher Hitchens (born April 13 1949)
British and American author, journalist and literary critic

Source: Assassins of the Mind - Vanity Fair magazine, February 2009 edition

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Too good not to share - too dumb for words

My friends, how stupid can you get?

Is this man a Professor of Anti-Semitism?

Interactive Counterterrorism Calendar 2009

My friends, it's a few days late, sorry for that, but here is the invaluable interactive 2009 Counterterrrorism Calendar for you all to use.

You may prefer to use the printable version, available here by .pdf file.

It offers useful information across a wide range of terrorism-related topics: terrorist groups, wanted terrorists, and technical pages on various threat-related issues.

The CT Calendar marks dates according to the Gregorian and Islamic calendars, and contains significant dates in terrorism history, as well as dates that terrorists may believe are important when planning “commemoration-style” attacks.

It is designed by America's National Counterterrorism Center as a ready reference guide for law-enforcement, intelligence, military and security personnel, contingency planners, or simply citizens concerned by terrorist threats.

I hope it will be useful to us all in our continued vigilance against ongoing terror threats.

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Today's Truth

"Government is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, the people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to institute government; and to reform, alter, or totally change the same, when their protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness require it."

John Adams - (1735-1826)
Founding Father, 2nd US President

Israel Solidarity Rally - Sunday 11th January

My friends, I shall be joining the Jewish community this Sunday in Trafalgar Square to rally for our Middle Eastern allies, Israel.

Organised by the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Jewish Leadership Council with the support of the major organisations of Anglo-Jewry, it is important that support for Israel extends throughout the community beyond British Jews alone.

Israel remains the front line in the Global War on Terror, they must not feel isolated from the international community.

I trust many of you will be joining me.

So being anti-Israeli isn't the same as being anti-Jew?

Really, my friends, really?
"In Britain, the Community Security Trust, a Jewish defense group, said it had seen a rise in anti-Semitic incidents since the start of Israel's offensive against Gaza. The group said it had recorded 20-25 incidents across the country in the past week that it believed were connected with Gaza, including an arson attempt on a synagogue in north London on Sunday.

"London police are investigating the attack, in which suspects splashed flammable liquid on the door and set it on fire.

"Community Security Trust spokesman Mark Gardner said that in another incident last week a gang of 15-20 youths walked along the main street in Golders Green, a largely Jewish neighborhood in north London, shouting "Jew" and "Free Palestine" at passers-by."
You decide.

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Daft bugger!

My friends,

I see my good friend Gerald Warner has been allowed out of the home to spout his deluded rantings at the Telegraph once more, this time using the event of Nick Herbert's civil partnership to declare that gays in the Shadow Cabinet will cost the Tories the next General Election. As he says:

"Is the Tory leadership so hopelessly out of touch with mainstream Britain that it has no idea of the impression this creates? It may play well in metrosexual London, but in the public bar of the Dog and Duck it excites either distaste or derision. Few ministers exit their careers with reputations intact; but to be objects of bawdy ridicule before they even secure their portfolios is disastrous. Just 10 years ago, two men standing before a registrar was a comedy sketch; for much of Britain it remains so today."

Actually, Gerald, most people couldn't give two hoots that two responsible homosexual adults have chosen to do to declare publicly their commitment to one another. I include in that my mother and father, currently in their 8th and 9th decades respectively, who think there are many more pressing concerns facing the country today.

It is you who is out of touch with Britain, not Nick Herbert.

What I don't get about Brown's stimulus

My friends,

We are told that lots of our money will be spent on "infrastructure projects". Who could object? Sounds wonderful…until you stop and think about it.

Does infrastructure include filling potholes, in other words upgrades and repairs of our already dilapidated structures? Or will this stimulus package be spent creating new projects as yet unimagined?

Existing infrastructure is often neglected, after all there is little political capital found in filling potholes, especially when compared to spending our money creating shiny new bridges, football stadia and regional parliaments.

These lovely new buildings create opportunities for lavish opening ceremonies that fuel the desire of all politicians for positive free publicity. Who does the same for resurfacing motorways?
The whole process is skewed in favour of new schemes, even if the repair of our existing infrastructure would serve the taxpayer better.

In addition new schemes inevitably require long delays before any ground is broken or cornerstones laid, especially when they are the gift of politicians weighing up the personal advantages to them of myriad special interest groups competing for their share of state largesse (and, indeed, those groups trying to delay the new buildings because of some rare newt or interesting weed).

With the best will in the world it can take years before any money intended to stimulate actually gets into the economy, and who knows what the economy will be like when that happens?

A stimulus package created during a recession can take effect during a period of inflationary growth, and then the law of unintended consequences comes to play as Brown’s economic stimulus is found to fuel even more inflation.

We are told by my good friend Gordon Brown et al that the Tories don’t have economic plans. That’s not true. Tory plans will result in spending now, chosen by the public. Brown’s plans will not help the economy or the infrastructure in the short term, and in the long term may harm both.

Today's Truth

"Where once a tyrant had to wish that his subjects had but one common neck that he might strangle them all at once, all he has to do now is to 'educate the people' so that they will have but one common mind to delude."

Richard Mitchell - (1929-2002)
Professor at Glassboro State College, NJ, author, founder and publisher of The Underground Grammarian