Obama’s Gaza Game

by on July 30th, 2014

While Israelis are fighting and dying, families huddling in bomb shelters and soldiers going off to face death, the men and women in suits and power suits moving through the great halls of diplomacy are using them as pawns in a larger game.

During the Cold War, Israel was a pawn in a larger struggle between the US and the USSR. Now it is back to being a counter in a larger game.

Israel’s function within the great halls of diplomacy was always as a lever on the Arab states. It was not an end, but a means of moving them one way or another. When the Arab states drifted into the Soviet orbit, the “Special Relationship” was born. The relationship accomplished its goal once Egypt was pried out of the Soviet orbit. It has lingered on because of the emotional and cultural ties of Israel and the US.

Now Obama is using Israel as a lever to push Egypt back into the Islamist camp. Egypt’s rejection of the Muslim Brotherhood broke the Arab Spring. Political Islam, which seemed to be on the ascendance, is back to being a freak show represented by terrorists and Turkey’s mad mustachioed dictator.

Egypt was where Obama went to begin the Arab Spring. Egypt is still his target. Israel is just the lever.

The reason Israel was never allowed to truly win any wars was because it was being used as a lever. By being a “good lever” during the Cold War, it could damage Egypt enough that the latter would come to the negotiating table overseen by the US and move back into the Western sphere of influence.

Israel couldn’t be allowed to win a big enough victory because then there would nothing to negotiate. Likewise, Israel wouldn’t be allowed to keep what it won because then there would be no reason for Egypt to come to the negotiating table. Sometimes Israel would even be expected to lose, as in the Yom Kippur War, to force it to come to the negotiating table.

Swap Egypt for the PLO and that’s how the disastrous peace process happened. Then swap the PLO for Hamas and that is where we are now.

Obama’s initial support for Israel’s war on Hamas was only to the extent necessary to bring the terrorist group to the negotiating table. And then once Hamas comes to the negotiating table, the White House will back its demands against Israel in exchange for getting the Brotherhood on board with its agenda.

Israel is just the means; the Muslim Brotherhood and political Islam are the objective. That objective may mean the end of the West, but those striding boldly through the halls of diplomacy are not worried.

The real target of the Hamas campaign wasn’t Israel; it was Egypt.

Egypt’s crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood had included Hamas. That crackdown worried Hamas far more than anything that Israel was doing. Meanwhile the Muslim Brotherhood’s loss of power meant a major setback for the sugar daddies of the Arab Spring; Qatar, Turkey and their Western allies.

The new alignment had placed Qatar, Turkey, Obama and the EU in one row, while Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Israel and the PLO were in another row.

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A look at the types of things Lois Lerner called conservatives while writing on her government email account

by on July 30th, 2014

If Lerner called conservatives these things on her government email account, imagine what she might be writing on her personal account.  But you would think that a government official would be somewhat circumspect in writing something down in a permanent form for others to see.  However may be she knew that these emails wouldn’t be permanent!  From the WSJ:

A newly discovered email shows that former Internal Revenue Service official Lois Lerner once referred to conservatives as “—holes,” according to new documents released by House Republicans.In the November 2012 email exchange, Ms. Lerner also suggested that conservative “crazies” could threaten the nation’s future.
Her comments came in a wide-ranging email conversation, apparently with a friend or family member, while Ms. Lerner was traveling in England. At one point Ms. Lerner wrote that she overheard two women saying the U.S. had bankrupted itself and is “going down the tubes.”
“Well, you should hear the whacko wing of the GOP,” the person conversing with Ms. Lerner responded. “The right wing radio shows are scary to listen to.”
“Great,” Ms. Lerner replied. “Maybe we are through if there are that many —holes.” The word used by Ms. Lerner is redacted, with the first three letters blacked out.  . . .
Ms. Lerner adds later: “So we don’t need to worry about alien teRrorists [sic]. It’s our own crazies that will take us down.” . . .

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The Carbon TAX Scam

by on July 30th, 2014

By Alan Caruba

In a recent appearance before a congressional committee, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy told them that the agency’s proposed sweeping carbon-regulation plan was “really an investment opportunity. This is not about pollution control.”
If the plan isn’t about pollution, the primary reason for the EPA’s existence, why bother with yet more regulation of something that is not a pollutant—carbon dioxide—despite the Supreme Court’s idiotic decision that it is. Yes, even the Court gets things wrong.
Carbon dioxide (CO2) is vital to all life on Earth, but most particularly to every piece of vegetation that grows on it. Top climatologists tell me that it plays a very small role, if any, in the Earth’s climate or weather. Why would anyone expect a gas that represents 400 parts per million of all atmospheric gases, barely 0.04% of all atmospheric gases to have the capacity to affect something as huge and dynamic as the weather or climate?
When something as absurd as the notion the U.S. must drastically reduce its CO2 emissions is told often enough by a wide range of people that include teachers, the media, scientists, politicians, and the President, people can be forgiven for believing this makes sense.
What Gina McCarthy was demonstrating is her belief that not only the members of Congress are idiots, but all the rest of us are as well.
Faking Climate Data
“The science is clear. The risks are clear. We must act…” Sorry, Gina, a recent issue of Natural News, citing the Real Science website, reported “(in) what might be the largest scientific fraud ever uncovered, NASA and the NOAA have been caught red-handed altering historical temperature data to produce a ‘climate change narrative’ that defies reality.”  As reported in The Telegraph, a London daily, “NOAA’s U.S. Historical Climatology Network has been ‘adjusting’ its record by replacing real temperatures with data ‘fabricated’ by computer models.”
The EPA has been on the front lines of destroying coal-fired plants that produce the bulk of the nation’s electricity, claiming, like the Sierra Club and Friends of the Earth that coal is “dirty” and must be eliminated from any use.
On July 29, CNSnews reported that “For the first time ever, the average price for a kilowatthour of electricity in the United States has broken through the 14-cent mark, climbing to a record 14.3 cents in June, according to data released last week by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.”
A Carbon Tax
What the Greens want most of all is a carbon tax; that is to say, a tax on CO2 emissions. It is one of the most baseless, destructive taxes that could be imposed on Americans and we should take a lesson from the recent experience that Australians had when, after being told by a former prime minister, Julia Gillard, that she would not impose the tax, she did. They get rid of her and then got rid of the tax!
As Daniel Simmons, the vice president of policy at the American Energy Alliance, wrote in Roll Call “Australia is now the first country to eliminate its carbon tax. In doing so, it struck a blow in favor of sound public policy.”  Initiated in 2012, the tax had imposed a $21.50 charge (in U.S.

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Stunner: Three of the four women on "The View" support gun ownership for protection

by on July 30th, 2014

Transcript
JENNY MCCARTHY: “People who would definitely disagree with the NFL ruling is a gun safety group that is trying to pressure Republican senators to support gun restriction laws for domestic abuser with a brutal PSA. Now, warning, get your kids out of the room. Because this is pretty disturbing. Take a look.”

MCCARTHY: “Right? Effective, Lara?”
LARA SPENCER: “I would say highly effective. I mean so upsetting. Very strong message. And-“
SHERRI SHEPHERD: “For not getting a gun? For, for having gun safety?”
SPENCER: “Well right, but that’s, that’s the catch here.”
SHEPHERD: “Can I tell you, can I tell you the flipside of that. And that is absolutely so disturbing, but the flipside is when I was at my home and the alarm went off, and I ran to my son’s bedroom and Jeffery was crying, and I realized all I had to protect me and somebody coming around that corner was a daggone wicker trash basket. And I said to myself and “Everybody said to me, well get a bat.” You got one chance to use a bat and if they take it away. “Get pepper stray.” You know how close they got to get to you, if you use pepper spray? You got one of these? [makes a gesture like she’s holding a gun and makes a sound of cocking a gun] They’re not gonna come near you and your child! So when you’re standing there, and you don’t know how to protect your child ? Get a gun in your home!”
JULIET HUDDY: “Well I was gonna say when I was in my In my early twenties I had a stalker. A lot of people have that situation whether they are on TV or not on TV. And I remember feeling so vulnerable. And I just remember constantly going to sleep at night wishing that I could go over and grab my dad’s gun. You know? And keep it behind my bed. You know the knife? The butcher knife in the kitchen wasn’t gonna work for me. You know?”
SPENCER: “I have two kids. I would never want a gun in the house.”
MCCARTHY: “I’ve been in circumstances like Sherri where, you know people tried to break in and I’m with my son going, “I wish I had something to protect myself with.””
SHEPHERD: “I think that’s the thing when you’re standing there and if you’ve ever been in that situation where you have children and you go what do I have?”
MCCARTHY: “I used to think like you.”
SHEPHERD: “I used to think like you too. When you’re sitting there going-“
SPENCER: “What changed you?”
MCCARTHY: “That happened to me. They were trying to get in and I felt out of control and I had a child, and I was thinking to myself I wish I had a gun and I wish, you know, I have it very well protected now. There’s no way. Locked up.”
SHEPHERD: “Locked up, go to the gun range, know how to use it. There was a man who broke into a woman’s house. She was up in the attic. She had her two twins. He, as soon as he put his face in the attic she shot him.

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"Who Are These People?" and "Alas, Poor Obama, I Knew Him Well"

by on July 30th, 2014

Sometimes, as I take in the passing scene, I find myself wondering if I went to sleep on earth and woke up on some other planet. And, mind you, it’s not just the politicians who are giving me this queasy feeling.

For instance, Eric and Charlotte Kaufman are apparently the kind of people who are the envy of other couples in their circle. I can hear the wives in that circle looking disdainfully at their own husbands and saying, “Why can’t you be more like Eric? Why don’t you ever decide to take us on a 3,000 mile sailing voyage? You’re such an old stick-in-the mud.”

The husbands are now in a position to give their wives the horselaugh because when the Kaufmans decided to sail from Mexico to New Zealand, they also decided to take their one-year-old twin daughters along. Not too surprisingly, one of the little girls took sick 900 miles out, and the Kaufmans had to be rescued at sea at a cost to California’s taxpayers of $663,000!

Once on dry land, Mrs. Kaufman, defending herself against those who called her a lousy mother, said, “Kids get sick.” She seemed unaware that she was actually making the case for those of us who regarded them as a pair of irresponsible dunderheads. Kids do get sick. With annoying regularity, I would add. That is why normal people with little kids take them to the park or the zoo. Where they don’t take them is on a 3,000 mile ocean voyage in a sailboat just so that their friends will gush, “Those Kaufmans sure are a fun couple.”

While we’re on this subject, I think that anyone, with or without kids in tow, who gets it into his head to sail around the world or climb a mountain should be compelled to take out the appropriate insurance, so that innocent taxpayers don’t get stuck having to foot the bill to finance rescue operations. If you require an adrenaline rush to make your life worth living, it’s no business of mine, just so long as I don’t have to pay for the helicopters and the brave crews who are going to have to risk their necks to save your silly one.

Another example of a civilian behaving as foolishly as a politician was the guy who fell asleep at a baseball game and is now suing ESPN because when he was caught snoozing on camera, the broadcasters made a few jokes at his expense. He is suing for $10 million because of the emotional distress he was caused.

Of course he won’t win, but imagine the precedent if he did, and everyone who ever fell asleep at a baseball game decided to sue. I mean, so what if ESPN broadcasters didn’t humiliate you on national TV? It’s possible you were hit with a bag of peanuts thrown by a vendor or spilled a cup of your over-priced beer while sawing logs. The problem, as even the greediest shyster will acknowledge, is that everyone knows that falling asleep at a baseball game is the real national pastime.

But when dealing with the loons of America, you can only go so long without mentioning politicians. So let us consider Harry Reid.

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Beware GMOs; They Set You Up For Cancer, Other Diseases

by on July 29th, 2014

Beware GMOs; They Set You Up For Cancer, Other Diseases

THINKSTOCK

If you were to write a movie about evil scientists plotting to insert secret ingredients into the food supply in order to make humans sick, you’d have a hard time coming up with something more inventive and potentially more dangerous than genetically modified (GMO) food.

Even though GMO ingredients are not listed on food labels, they have already infiltrated our dinner plates. And this technological change to our food has the potential for sabotaging the world’s food supply. Sadly, most Americans don’t even realize they eat GMO food at just about every meal. In particular, the soy and corn ingredients of our favorite dishes almost always contain GMO ingredients.

U.S. farmers and farmers around the world plant vast amounts of these laboratory-created crops. In particular, soy, corn and cotton (processed food frequently has cottonseed oil added to it) have been genetically engineered to contain toxic pesticides and to withstand massive amounts of herbicides that are applied to farm fields. This allows GMO crops to survive and be harvested while weeds in the fields are supposed to wither and die.

Of course, other beneficial living things like honeybees, other pollinators and a wide collection of wildlife also perish from massive pesticide exposure. And the pesticides often persist long enough to poison our water and air.

According to estimates by the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications, since GMO crops were introduced in the 1990s, 1 billion acres worldwide have been planted with these plants. That’s an area larger than the continental United States.

GMO proponents argue that the technology is safe, but recent discoveries about what happens in the genetic material of altered organisms are not reassuring. Understand that we are not talking about hybridization, which is the process of cross breeding similar plants in order to create a superior variety or achieve a specific characteristic. Creating GMO plants is much different and can involve replacing, swapping or splicing genes or inserting viruses into the genes themselves in order to alter their very nature.

In theory, altering an organism’s genetic material seems simple and precise. The process is supposed to consist of extracting a desirable gene from one plant or animal and inserting it into another.

Suppose, for example, one wants to create tomatoes that can withstand cold weather. In theory, genes that allow a frost-resistant plant to survive freezing temperatures are extracted and put it into the tomato plant. When seeds of the new tomato plant grow, the presence of this genetic material stimulates activity in the new plants that keep them alive as the temperature drops.

In practice, however, this leads to unforeseen consequences. Only recently have scientists discovered that the genes scientists insert into plants are often contaminated with unintended material, including viruses.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has discovered that when lab scientists altered genes in GMO food, they were also feeding in parts of a virus gene. No one had ever noticed that before.

This virus gene, however, is now in the food we eat. Is it safe? Will it lead to some type of new illness among the millions of people who consume it? Experts can’t say.

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Time Runs Out on Counting Casualties in Gaza

by on July 29th, 2014

Last week I received an email from Time magazine, asking if I “would be interested in contributing a piece for Time.com on the casualty numbers being reported in Gaza. These come mostly from Hamas, and we’re interested in a piece on how reliable/unreliable the numbers are,” the email said.  But the magazine apparently wasn’t interested in the product they requested.

I immediately responded that I would be willing to provide them with a piece, and, at their request, suggested what I would plan to say. They wrote back the following: “I think we need a piece that focuses on the reported casualties and how we can/should unpack those numbers as reliable or not. What source or sources should we be going to, and how should the casualty count be done? I don’t think we need to address Israel being treated as the aggressor since I think many will be familiar with that perspective and its counter.” When I submitted a full piece targeted more toward what they suggested, they decided to pass. It wasn’t “quite what we’re looking for so will have to pass.”

The media have been playing games with the coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and most of it favors the residents of Gaza. After the UN school in Gaza was hit last week, and said to have killed 15 or 16 people, Time ran a story, which, as stated in the postscript at the end of the article, was a corrected version. By Time magazine’s admission, the earlier version of the story “drew a premature conclusion that the attack on the Gaza shelter was committed by Israel. The source of the attack has not yet been confirmed.”

NBC news also cited “Israeli shells” for the attack and spoke with “health ministry official Ashraf al-Kidra.” Israel acknowledged that a single Israeli Defense Force (IDF) shell hit the school courtyard, but said it was at a time when there was no one there, and that it had nothing to do with the deaths of those 16 people.

It’s not surprising, then, that The New York Times on July 28 counted the “mounting outrage over the hundreds of civilian Palestinians dead” as among several levers in the leverage that Hamas has in cease-fire negotiations. This hints at something all too true: every dead or crying Palestinian woman and child serves as propaganda on behalf of the militant Hamas terrorist cause.

The New York Times also describes Hamas, which was designated a foreign terrorist organization by the State Department in 1997, as a “militant Palestinian faction that dominates the Gaza Strip” in this piece. The article front-loads the pro-Hamas sources as it makes its analysis, but the “former Israeli chief of military intelligence” is given the last word. “This is their ideology, this is what they believe in; it’s the resistance,” says Amos Yadlin. “To ask Hamas to demilitarize Gaza is like asking a priest to convert to Judaism.”

How many people really read the Times’ articles to the last sentence, especially in a 1,300-word piece?

But the Times does hint at one important issue: for all the talk about aid to those in the Gaza Strip, would international aid produce the intended effect at this point?

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Climate Alarmists Never Quit!

by on July 29th, 2014

By Alan Caruba

In the same way Americans are discovering that the Cold War that was waged from the end of World War Two until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 is not over, Americans continue to be subjected to the endless, massive, global campaign to foist the hoax of global warming–now called climate change—on everyone.
The campaign’s purpose to convince everyone that it is humans, not the sun, oceans, and other natural phenomenon, and that requires abandoning fossil fuels in favor of “renewable” wind and solar energy.
“It is not surprising that climate alarmists, who desire above all else blind allegiance to their cause, would demand all school teachers toe the ‘official party line’ and quash any dissent on the subject of man-made global warming in their classroom,” says Craig Rucker, the Executive Director of co-founder of the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT). “What is absurd is that any teacher or free-thinking person for that matter would listen to them.”
These days when I am challenged regarding my views about global warming, climate change or energy I send the individual to www.climatedepot.com  and www.energydepot.us, two constantly updated websites filled with links to information on these topics. Both are maintained by CFACT.
It’s not just our classrooms where Green indoctrination goes on. It is also our news media that continue to distort every weather event to advance the hoax. Guiding and feeding them is a massive complex of organizations led by the United Nations—the International Panel on Climate Change—that maintains the hoax to frighten people worldwide in order to achieve “one world order.”
On September 23, heads of state, including President Obama, will gather in New York City for what the Sierra Club calls “a historic summit on climate change. With our future on the line, we will take a weekend and use it to bend the course of history” to save the world from “the ravages of climate change.” This is absurd. Suggesting that humans can alter the climate in any way defies centuries of proof they do not.
One of the leading Leftist organizations, the Center for American Progress, focused on the July 14 Major Economics Forum in Paris, offered four items for its agenda. Claiming that “the Arctic is warming two times faster than any other region on earth”, they wanted policy changes based on this falsehood. They blamed climate change for “global poverty” and wanted further reductions in so-called greenhouse gas emissions from energy use. The enemy, as far as they were concerned was energy use.
Mary Hutzler, a senior research fellow of the Institute for Energy Research, testified before a July 22nd meeting of the Senate Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on International Development and Foreign Assistance, that due to Europe’s green energy (wind and solar) policies, industrial electricity prices are two-to-five times higher than in the U.S. and that, by 2020, 1.4 million European households will be added to those experiencing energy poverty.
There are lessons to be learned, for example, from Spain’s investment in wind energy that caused the loss of four jobs for the electricity it produced and 13 jobs for every megawatt of solar energy. In Germany, the cost of electricity is three times higher than average U.S. residential prices.

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My newest piece in the Philadelphia Inquirer: "Armed doctor saved lives"

by on July 29th, 2014

My newest piece in the Philadelphia Inquirer starts this way:

On Thursday afternoon, Dr. Lee Silverman undoubtedly saved many lives. Using a handgun, the Delaware County psychiatrist stopped what both police and the district attorney described as a certain mass killing at Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital.

The attacker, Richard Plotts, is a convicted felon, which bans him from legally owning a gun. But Pennsylvania’s universal background check law did not stop him. Neither did the hospital’s signs banning guns.

The proposed federal law on expanded background checks that President Obama continually pushes is similar to Pennsylvania’s and would not have stopped Plotts either. Indeed, it is hard to see how it would have stopped any of the other mass shootings during his presidency.

At Mercy Fitzgerald, caseworker Theresa Hunt was killed when Plotts opened fire during a regularly scheduled appointment with Dr. Lee Silverman. Fortunately, the doctor had his own gun and returned fire, hitting Plotts three times and critically wounding him.

After firing all the bullets in his gun, Plotts still had 39 bullets on him, bullets that he could have used to shoot many other people. Silverman’s three hits, however, made it possible for two other hospital employees to tackle the wounded attacker and secure his .32-caliber revolver. Plotts has since been charged with murder and attempted murder.

Yeadon Police Chief Donald Molineux was clear: “Without a doubt, I believe the doctor saved lives. … Without that firearm, this guy [Plotts] could have went out in the hallway and just walked down the offices until he ran out of ammunition.” . . .

The rest of the piece is available here.

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Israel’s "Disproportionate" Self-Defense

by on July 28th, 2014

A target in Gaza is hit

By Alan Caruba

On Sunday, July 27, Eleanor Cliff, a member of The McLaughlin Group panel, referred to Israel’s “disproportionate” response to the thousands of rockets and missiles that Hamas has been firing at its citizens for months, if not years.

This is a common criticism of Israel, but it is far easier to make if you are living safely somewhere other than Israel and not being awakened by alarm sirens at 5 A.M. with just a little time to make it to a bomb shelter.

Ms. Cliff was hardly alone. In Great Britain, the Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, in contrast to Prime Minister David Cameron, also declared Israel’s response to Hamas as a “disproportionate form of collective punishment” on the citizens of Gaza.

On July 26 The Times of Israel reported that “Thousands of pro-Palestinian protesters marched in London and Paris on Saturday, calling out against Israel’s military operation in the Hamas-controlled Palestinian enclave.

In London, the second Saturday in a row, the protest was estimated to have drawn more than 10,000 participants. “Demonstrators held placards reading ‘Stop Israeli State Terror’. ‘Freedom for Palestine’ and ‘Gaza—End the Siege.’ They also chanted ‘Shame on you David Cameron’ as they filed past the British prime minister’s Downing Street office.” By contrast, Paris cracked down on pro-Palestinian demonstrations and, along with Germany and Italy, denounced expressions of anti-Semitism.

No doubt the expressions of support were welcome in Israel, but when it strikes back against its enemies it tends to run out of friends rather swiftly. In Scandinavia, Denmark, Finland and Norway backed the Palestinians but the European Union did condemn the rocket attacks by Hamas, as well as its use of human shields.

Departing from President Obama’s pro-forma statement on Israel’s right to defend itself, South American nations condemned Israel in tune with their general acceptance of the view that Israel is an aggressor and occupier despite the fact that in relinquished control of Gaza to the Palestinians in 2005. Joining in the chorus of condemnations were Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Uruguay, and Venezuela.

The hypocrisy of those who raise the issue of “proportionate response” is breathtaking.

Consider Israel’s history. In 1948 prior to and following its declaration of independence, Israel fought several Arab armies. In 1949 armistice agreements established lines between Israel and its neighbors. In the 1950s and 60s the Israelis had to respond to constant Fedayeen—Arab guerillas–incursions from Syria, Egypt, and Jordan. In June 1967 Israel fought the Six-Day War with Egypt, Jordan, and Syria, with troops contributed by Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Algeria. When it was over, Israel had increased its landmass and are now called “occupiers” for having defended itself and won!

From 1967 to 1970, Israel fought a war of attrition as the Egyptians, aided by Jordan, Syria, and the Palestinian Liberation Organization, sought to recapture the Sinai. In October 1973, the Israelis fought the Yom Kippur War against Egypt and Syria. It began with a surprise attack on one of the holiest days of the Jewish calendar.

Are you getting tired of reading about the many wars waged against Israel?

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