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Archive for July, 2006

July 31st 2006

By The End Of Kerry’s First Term …

Kerry’s hot air turns microphone red.

John “I’m not Hillary; I just sound like her” Kerry wants universal health coverage by 2012 … conveninently, the year that would be the end of his first term as president. If pigs could fly. Here’s the AP report:

Sen. John Kerry on Monday proposed requiring all Americans to have health insurance by 2012, “with the federal government guaranteeing that they have the means to afford it.” …

Kerry proposes to pay for the program by repealing tax cuts enacted during the Bush administration that benefit those earning over $200,000 annually. He did not immediately elaborate on how he would enact his insurance mandate, but one aid said he would do so with a requirement written into the legislation spelling out that the government covers anyone who is uninsured.

So, let’s see. We stop the economic expansion in its tracks by repealing the tax cuts, putting thousands upon thousands out of work. Then we guarantee that the government will pay for these newly unemployed persons’ health insurance.

Gotta hand it to those Dems. Visionary.

Just when you think the pap and pabulum is reaching intolerable proportions, there’s this:

“One of my biggest regrets is that fear talk trumped the health care walk, and that we are less safe abroad and less healthy at home because of that,” Kerry told a crowd of several hundred during a midday speech at Faneuil Hall.

“Fear talk?!” I don’t know about you, but it’s not talk with me. I’m very afraid of Islamofascism. Kerry’s not, apparently … and that would guide his foreign policy.

“Trumped the health care walk?!” I seem to remember Hillary floating a leaden universal health care balloon in 1992 and getting crushed as a result. That was eight years before Bush Derangement Syndrome symptoms started showing up in a significant percentage of the Dem demographic.

Perhaps Kerry was spending Christmas in Cambodia and missed that episode.

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July 31st 2006

Did Hezbollah Stage Qana Deaths?

There’s a mysterious time gap between the only Israeli attack near the Qana building where women and children allegedly died and the building’s collapse, plus other mysterious discrepencies.

See what you think after you read this Sweetness & Light post and view the photos.

Based on comments to the post, it seems Koret’s wrong on his rigor mortis analysis, but the rest sounds like just the sort of dirty trick Hezbollah has pulled many times in the past.

hat-tip: Jim
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July 31st 2006

"I’ll Have A Coke With That"

As we note the end of Saddam Hussein’s 19-day hunger strike (beef and rice washed down with a Coke, presumably provided by the Great Satan himself), let us remember the UN’s wonderful Oil-for-Food program.

Under that program, the beef-chompin’, coke-swillin’ Hussein scammed money that should have gone to food for his people and used it for his own evil purposes. He cared not a whit about the impact of his behavior on his citizens.

The global Left, whose acuity was in soft focus, as usual, blamed the U.S. for the Iranian people’s starvation — pointing to UN embargo resolutions (661, 666) that we apparently were solely guilty for. A book by Ramsey Clark and others included this:

In all parts of the country, critical shortages of clean drinking water have led to epidemic levels of gastroenteritis (infectious diarrhea). Thousands have died. Already at this early date over fifty cases of cholera have been confirmed by laboratory diagnosis. The true number could be one hundred times this figure since, in most parts of Iraq, hospital laboratories have been shut down due to lack of electricity and reagents-making diagnosis impossible. …

It is the opinion of the health assessment team that most of the current civilian ill-health and suffering (mostly of children) is a direct result of both the war and especially the continued imposition of punitive sanctions against Iraq. These sanctions violate not only of the Geneva Conventions and Protocols but also the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and every other United Nations resolution and convention concerned with human rights. The situation with regards to foodstuffs is even more worrisome.

Not mentioned, of course, is that Saddam Hussein had it within his power to end the sanctions. Also not mentioned is that the man Clark is now so vigorously defending was never wanting for money. He continued to build palaces while his people starved. He continued to fund the military while his people starved.

And he continued his obstinant middle-fingering of the U.N., forcing continued illness and hunger on his people.

Little wonder then that Hussein’s hunger strike did not ignite sympathy among the Iraqis. The NYT quotes Fauwzya al-Attiya, a sociologist at Baghdad University:

“Most of us wish he was executed just to end this problem so we can face our other problems.”

Photo: AFP
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July 30th 2006

This Just In: It’s 1952 In China

In 1952, Americans were busy building fallout shelters. Now the Chinese are doing the same thing … sort of (from the Times of London):

In the modern metropolis of Shanghai, construction has been completed on an underground bunker that can accommodate up to 200,000 people.

Its builders could have had the words of Chairman Mao in mind. At the height of the 1966-76 Cultural Revolution, he said: “Dig deep tunnels, store piles of grain. Prepare for war, prepare food for the people.”

The bunker in Shanghai was built to shelter people in case of explosions, emissions of poisonous gas or nuclear radiation. State-run media gave no clue as to the source of such possible attacks. Nor did it explain how a complex covering 90,000sq m (968,400sq ft), could have been constructed in total secrecy.

The report yesterday was the first word about it. The underground haven has 15 passages nearly 2.5 miles (4km) in length that link to office towers and residential apartments. It is also connected to the subway system, enabling people to flee from one district to another. It was not clear where the rest of the city’s 17.78 million residents would take refuge.

Water, power and ventilation systems can support the bunker’s population for between seven and fifteen days. In times of peace, some parts can be used as garages, warehouses or commercial facilities.

Officials stopped short of revealing the exact location of the bunker in the bowels of a city renowned for its futuristic buildings and role as the financial heart of China.

What do you suppose China’s up to? Taiwan comes to mind. If the militarists and Communists that run China have decided that it’s time to lose patience with their rebellious “province,” then an air raid shelter would certainly be in order. Not a positive development.

Or they could be worried about retaliation against North Korea, should Kim Il Jung push his nuke program too far. Prevailing easterly winds argue against that explanation.

Or, they could be afraid of themselves. A massive industrial explosion or radiation release is a distinct possibility, given the shoddiness of China’s industrialization.

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July 30th 2006

Scum! Cowards!

Far bigger blog-fish than I have already linked to these photos by Austrialian Chris Tinker (news.com.au) showing Hezbollah terror-goons setting up artillery posts in heavily populated civilian neighborhoods — but we all have to do our part to show these thugs for who they are.

hat-tip: memeorandum

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July 30th 2006

Oh, And By The Way …

When researching the the post below, I came across this on the Web site of e-Mission Solutions (cute, huh?) an organization dedicated to carbon neutrality:

The majority of the world’s climate scientists have concluded that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions resulting from human activities, such as transportation and electricity production, have a significant impact on the atmosphere and are having a discernible influence on global climate.

Some radical commentors on this site have recently taken the stand that the debate on human influence over global warming is over and only “rubes” don’t realize it. I offer this to these global warming fanatics with the suggestion that they grow up. Science is a place for research, debate, diverging views. The science of long-term global heating and cooling cycles is no different.

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July 30th 2006

The Quixotic Quest for Carbon Neutrality

Carbon neutrality, as its name implies, is the quest to offset your “carbon footprint” — the amount of carbon your business or lifestyle puts into the atmosphere — with credits deemed to reduce carbon output by an equal amount. Basically, it’s “burn a watt, plant a tree,” but it gets more complex quickly.

Al Gore bragged recently that he and Tipper are going carbon-neutral, and said he proofed his pudding with his flick, An Inconvenient Truth. Variety details how Gore’s Opus Climatus became carbon neutral:

Paramount Classics and Participant [Productions] have teamed with NativeEnergy on an eco-savvy way to tout the film: They’re offsetting 100% of the carbon dioxide emissions generated by pic-related globetrotting activities such as air travel, car services and hotels.

NativeEnergy calculates a “carbon footprint” based on the promo activities, with Par Classics and Participant splitting the costs associated with the footprint. NativeEnergy will use the proceeds to help build new Native American, Alaskan Native Village and farmer-owned renewable energy projects.

It’s nice that the Native Americans got some renewable energy. I wonder how much carbon will be burned delivering the equipment and the trainers, and how that carbon will be offset.

Note that Gore did not attempt to offset the energy involved in making the film; only in marketing it. Production crew travels, lighting sets, manufacturing cameras, editing and duping the film … indeed, showing the film in air conditioned theaters that folks drive to … these are carbon-spewing activities that Gore chose not to be neutral on. Why? Presumably because it would be far too costly.

But what’s really obvious is that carbon neutrality in this application is nothing more than another Leftist wealth redistribution scheme: Rich politico-enviros and Hollywood producers give some of their money to poor Native Americans, then recover it by writing it off as marketing expense, so the American taxpayers foot the bill.

In concept, carbon neutrality is blissful. It allows us to purge our materialism guilt by giving to the church of Mother Earth. After all, there’s nothing wrong with planting trees, or encouraging the development of alternative energy sources through Renewable Energy Credits, another carbon neutrality strategy. Really. I’m not being sarcastic. There’s nothing wrong with that. Go for it.

But there’s nothing wrong with not doing it, either. Corporations and individuals give in many ways, and the carbon neutrality movement is a very clever way to encourage their giving to go into eco-causes. But that can mean that other worthy causes — orphaned children, inner city poverty, coversion of lost souls — will get less money, and human suffering will increase because the enviros are getting more money to chase the windmill of turning back their demon de jour, global warming.

Because this is a Leftist concept, the next logical step will be to mandate carbon neutrality by forcing businesses to pursue it. In so doing, they are fostering Socialism, forcing their thinking into the free market. Their thinking always is detrimental to the free market. When the free market suffers, people suffer by getting laid off … which is more impactful on their quality of life than global warming.

Finally, as shown in this satellite photo of air pollution in China — carbon pollutants that are now wafting over our shores from the smelters, factories and diesel trucks of the eco-bruttality that is Communist China — we see the final fallacy of carbon neutrality. It focuses on the nations that are working hard to increase efficiency and decrease pollutants, and does nothing globally to fix problems in China and India.

Oh, they may have a handy project you can help fund to put windmills in some farm village in rural China, but what’s needed is eco-diplomacy, cutting Favored Nation trade status and tough policy, not chanting Om and prancing after carbon neutrality.

Now that the enviros have introduced the concept of carbon neutrality, they should keep their little promotion machine going and let the free market do its stuff. If they do, carbon neutrality is a fine thing.

But it’s more likely they will do what they always do. They will guilt-trip us, indoctrinate our children, and not practice what they preach. (How does a big, fundraising-needy enviro group go carbon-neutral on a direct mail campaign to a couple million recipients?) When that fails to turn public opinion enough for them (and they have a very hard time realizing when they’ve been victorious) they will use legislation and the courts to force their will on us.

China Photo: Space and Motion
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July 28th 2006

Iran’s Defenders Have Much To Forget

Atefah Sahaaleh was 22, married, and an adultress, so the Iranian revolutionary government hung her.

That’s what these pillars of morality said, anyway. But BBC reports that Saahleh was actually a 16 year old unmarried girl. Both her birth certificate and death certificate say she lived just 16 years.

She was not a moral pillar. She had had three previous run-ins with Iran’s moral police, which operate under the Mullahs, not the so-called democratic Iranian Parliament. The first arrest was for walking alone on the street. The second was for being in a car with a boy. It got her 100 lashes and abuse by the moral police scum that ran the prison.

The third run-in came to light during her trial for her fourth run-in. It indicates the downward spiral Sahaaleh was locked into:

Soon after her release [from the second charge], Atefah became involved in an abusive relationship with a man three times her age.

Former revolutionary guard, 51-year-old Ali Darabi – a married man with children – raped her several times.

She kept the relationship a secret from both her family and the authorities. fourth charge for contributing to the immorality of other girls. The petition leading to that charge had no witness signatures; just moral police signatures.

The affair with Darabi came out during her trial and the court’s rath was one-sidedly directed toward her. Seeing that she was being railroaded, she yelled at the judge and threw off her veil. Routine teen behavior here; a fatal mistake in Iran:

She was sentenced to execution by hanging, while Darabi got just 95 lashes.

Shortly before the execution, but unbeknown to her family, documents that went to the Supreme Court of Appeal described Atefah as 22.

“Neither the judge nor even Atefah’s court appointed lawyer did anything to find out her true age,” says her father.

And a witness claims: “The judge just looked at her body, because of the developed physique… and declared her as 22.”

Judge Haji Rezai took Atefah’s documents to the Supreme Court himself.

And at six o’clock on the morning of her execution he put the noose around her neck, before she was hoisted on a crane to her death.

The Mullahs of Iran and their followers at home and elsewhere — like in Hezbollah — believe themselves to be the moral representative’s of Allah’s law and Mohammed’s book here on earth. They want nothing more than to subjugate the world to kangaroo courts, lashes, executions — as witnessed by the fact that Iran is second only to China in annual executions.

The Left argues that the Christian right wants a theocracy. It’s true Christian faith would say Sahaaleh is a sinner (who isn’t?). But can anyone, no matter how much a leftwing nutcase, remember a single Christian leader calling for the death of a teen who is sexually active — or a 22 year-old adultress for that matter? Christianity is a religion of redemption.

We have a fearful enemy in this war, and their apologists on the American Left have a longer and longer list of things they must forget in order to maintain their position.

hat-tip: memeorandum

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July 27th 2006

No Iranian Guards In Lebanon? Ha!

Lefty commenter Marshall Darts posted a comment to my earlier post about Iranian Revolutionary Guard troops in Lebanon:

As of today, no credible news outlet has confirmed or even reported your flight of fantasy.

Fortunately, I’ve got Nexis, so a search of “iranian revolutionary guard AND lebanon” to show that many publications have written about Iranian Revolutionary Guard activities in Lebanon and one besides Net World Daily wrote specifically about the dead IRG troops. It was the New York Sun on July 24:

The bodies of Iranian Revolutionary Guard soldiers killed by the Israeli army in Lebanon have been transported to Syria and flown to Tehran, senior Lebanese political sources said.

Israeli and Egyptian security officials confirmed the news, which follows a report that first appeared in The New York Sun, that Iranian forces posted to southern Lebanon have been aiding Hezbollah terrorists in their attacks against Israel, including helping to fire rockets into Israeli population centers.

The Lebanese sources said between six and nine dead Iranian Revolutionary Guard soldiers were brought in trucks last week into Syria for a flight back to Iran. They said the bodies were transported along with the tens of thousands of Lebanese civilians fleeing to Syria.

(Apologies: I’m on a very slow Internet connection, so I don’t have time to look up any of the links for the cited articles, which Nexis does not provide.)

Actually, BBC reported on the incident, to report that the Iranians subsequently called the report “baseless.” Perhaps Marshall finds the Iranians to be believable. Yet he calls me gullible.

For the life of me, I can’t understand why this guy is so unwilling to accept Iranian involvement in Lebanon. Does he want to be a poster child for the Pollyanna Left? The Iranians are evangelical jihadists and helped found Hezbollah in 1983. WaPo once wrote that the Hezbollah manefesto has a picture of Ayatollah Khomeni on its back cover. And he can’t put two and two together?

Here’s a gleaning from 61 Nexis hits on “Iranian Revolutionary Guard AND Lebanon” in just the last week:

  • New Republic, July 31: Hezbollah is equipped with a variety of Iranian rockets, and, according to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), the missile that hit an Israeli warship last week was launched from Lebanon by members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.

  • Mideast Mirror, July 27: The rockets he has capable of that range are Iranian and are believed by Israel to be under control of Iranian Revolutionary Guards in Lebanon, despite Nasrallah’s claims that his people have been trained in their use.
  • The Scotsman, July 27: With aid from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, Hezbollah has turned south Lebanon into a series of minefields and fortifications, forcing the Israelis to resort to air strikes to wear the enemy down rather than embark on a costly frontal assault.

  • Jerusalem Post: July 26: Iran and Hizbullah believe that the ferocity of the attacks against Israel will deter us all from taking action against Iran’s nuclear facilities. But by giving the West the opportunity to fight it first in Lebanon Teheran is providing the US Israel and others with critical intelligence about its own installations. The subterranean bunkers in south Lebanon that IDF ground forces are now conquering were built by Iranian Revolutionary Guards units and designed by Iranian engineers – the same forces that conceived and constructed Iran’s nuclear installations.

  • John McCain on Larry King Live, July 26: “I do not believe Hezbollah would have attacked Israel without the encouragement of the Iranians. The Iranian Revolutionary Guard are training Hezbollah in Southern Lebanon.”
  • The (Canadian) National Post, July 25: But here’s what we do know: We know that the missile that wrecked an IDF warship and killed four sailors on July 15 was manufactured in Iran to a Chinese design. We know that Hezbollah’s longer-range weapons are commanded by Iranian Revolutionary Guards. We know that Hezbollah’s fighting forces were equipped and trained by Iranian officers. And we know above all that Hezbollah is financed, equipped, and trained by the Iranian secret service. It carries out terror missions on behalf of Iran. For all practical purposes, Hezbollah is an arm of the Iranian state.

  • The New York Post, July 24: Master terrorist Imad Mugniyah was in Beirut just days before the Hezbollah kidnapping of two Israeli soldiers – raising strong suspicions that the longtime U.S. foe played a central role in the crime that sparked the conflict in Lebanon. His likely involvement would mean that Iran had a more direct role in the conflict than previously thought, since Mugniyah, 44, is now considered an Iranian agent who lives in Tehran and is under the protection of the Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.

  • San Diego Union Tribune, July 23: Indeed, Iran provides Hezbollah with at least $100 million per year and an estimated 11,000 of the 13,000 rockets in the group’s possession. Dozens of Iranian Revolutionary Guards have been working with Hezbollah in Lebanon for many years.

There are many more but this slow download time is killing me.

If it’s so obvious and widely accepted that Iranian Revolutionary Guard help Hezbollah and are in Lebanon, what’s so unbelievable that the IDF didn’t take out a few of the fascist pigs (to use an old Lefty term)? Indeed, they probably, and justifiably, sought out the IRG positions for extra special treatment.

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July 26th 2006

Backpeddling And Denying

As if we really care what the UN says and how it excuses itself and dodges responsibility. But it’s fun to watch the next chapter in the perpetual squirm of Kofi’s spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric and his deputy, Marie OkabeToday it was Marie’s turn to squirm:

Question: I’m no lawyer, but I watch lawyers on TV, and I noticed that, before accusing anybody of apparently committing a crime, they always look for motivation, for motive, for committing the crime that they alleged those people made. Now, when Kofi Annan said yesterday that the Israeli attack was apparently deliberate, he didn’t site such motivation …. Could you explain to me what possible motivation Israel would have to attack a UN position?

Deputy Spokesman: First of all, I don’t think it’s the Secretary-General’s position to talk about Israel’s motivation. I would like to refer to Jane Holl Lute’s statement, which was made public, which factually states the sequence of events that occurred …

Question: [talkover] Can you explain to me… [talkover]?

Deputy Spokesman: I cannot speak on behalf of Israel’s motivation. The Secretary-General made that statement and, again, he was asked about it this morning, or this afternoon, in Rome, following the International Conference. And, I would like to draw your attention to it. And, we should have that transcript of his remarks shortly, but, in it, he does say that he had the chance to speak to the Prime Minister of Israel. He said that, let me just read: “He definitely believes it’s a mistake. He has undertaken to investigate, and I have suggested we do a joint investigation. And, he has expressed his deep sorrow at what happened, and we accept that.” [The Secretary-General] goes on to say that he awaits the investigation, the end of the investigation. He looks forward to the results of the investigation, and he is grateful to the Prime Minister for what he has said, and we accept his words. And, I will again refer you to the remarks that he has made.

Question: So, did he jump the gun yesterday?

Deputy Spokesman: No, he did not.

To get through all that and end with a definitive statement like “No, he did not,” you have to follow this the formula: Backpeddle, backpeddle, backpeddle, deny. Brilliant!

And when you know you’re wrong, promise to get back to them later:

Question: Okay, so do you know how many of the total 21 strikes came from airplanes, because we were told yesterday about laser-guided missiles and things. There’s nothing about this, so was that correct information yesterday?

Deputy Spokesman: I don’t think the Secretary-General’s statement… it stands for what it is. I just will try to find out a little more detail on the specifics of the 21 strikes for you.

[A later information sheet said that at least 11 aerial bombs and 13 artillery shells had been fired n those strikes.]

It’s shameful and ridiculous … but not as ridiculous as Kofi’s call today to avoid solutions, i.e., to have an immediate ceasefire. Waving the human suffering card is no good here; wiping out Hezbollah in Lebanon will bring about a greater reduction in human suffering sooner than the UN approach of ceasefire to ceasefire violation to war.

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With Obama winning the presidency by seven percent, we can't blame the media. Their laudatory coverage and refusal to extensively probe into Obama's background and [lack of] experience was at best responsible for five percent of his vote, the pundits tell us. Here is a compilation of over 100 significant instances of pro-Obama/anti-McCain bias during the 2008 campaign.

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