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Syria raids Hamas offices months after group's leaders leave
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 4: Opinion
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5 22:00 Alaska Paul [289] 
1 18:04 Anguper Hupomosing9418 [254] 
6 21:28 JosephMendiola [277] 
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10 22:31 Charles [318] 
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Page 6: Politix
1 15:52 JohnQC [283]
15 22:40 wr [282]
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13 23:58 Broadhead6 [286]
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5 21:54 canalzone [329]
5 13:40 Glenmore [277]
1 09:03 Procopius2k [275]
5 22:27 Charles [285]
Africa Subsaharan
Nigeria: The Endless And Eternal Cycle Of Violence
Posted by: tipper || 11/08/2012 01:27 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [260 views] Top||


Arabia
The Saudi Showdown With Pakistan
Posted by: tipper || 11/08/2012 15:51 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [275 views] Top||

#1  Love the single comment at the link, which neatly encapsulates all that is wrong with the land of the pure:

PUREDE51 Not Fair KSA 11/8/2012 2:12:16 PM
Saudi Arabia has always supported Pakistan like elder brother in thick & thin.
Pakistanis respect & love Saudia like no other country on earth.
We understand political shifts but it does not mean Pakistan side Saudi enemies & Saudia sides Pakistan enemies.
India is our enemy no1 so if you favour them you will hurt our feelings badly.
If you really want that then go ahead we can't stop you but you will gain nothing from KAFIRS.
Posted by: trailing wife || 11/08/2012 16:27 Comments || Top||

#2  Get me some chili, I desire to feel properly.
Posted by: Shipman || 11/08/2012 17:54 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Culture Wars
Vengeance
An excerpt:
I quote the President in the broader Biblical context because BHO has claimed Christianity. It's one thing to screw up and be vengeful; that is sin. It's another to be caught up in a moment, and blurt something, as I'm sure apologists will contend.

It's quite another to actively encourage others to sin, for a Christian. I should hope that the good President would repent of his remark, and do so publicly.

Not holding my breath. Also, hoping nobody asks me for my opinion of the state of BHO's Christianity, as I'm not a qualified judge. Also escaping certainty; that the fuller context offered from Deuteronomy here relates at all to Obama's supporters. I'm just pointing out some dots; you're free to connect as desired.
Posted by: badanov || 11/08/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [276 views] Top||

#1  First thingys must come first, as there is still the matter of alleged death threats and riot threats, etc. [e.g. Twitter-gate] made agz both the Bammer + Romney during the campaign.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 11/08/2012 0:50 Comments || Top||

#2  Here's a quote from James Cone who inspired Jeremiah Wright's Black Liberation Theology:
Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him. The task of black theology is to kill Gods who do not belong to the black community … Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy. What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to destroy their oppressors here and now by any means at their disposal. Unless God is participating in this holy activity, we must reject his love.

(Quoted in William R Jones, “Divine Racism: The Unacknowledged Threshold Issue for Black Theology”, in African-American Religious Thought: An Anthology, ed Cornel West and Eddie Glaube.)

Obama did disavow Wright when his political career demanded it. However his current pastor isn't much of an improvement. He just believes that all or most whites are condemned to hell.

Vengeance and punishment are not concepts alien to Obama's version of Christianity.
Posted by: Elmerert Hupens2660 || 11/08/2012 4:50 Comments || Top||

#3  F all of this crap. As a country, you chose poorly.
Posted by: newc || 11/08/2012 10:45 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Politix
Finita La Commedia
h/t Instapundit
I'm not normally given to hyperbole, but it's all over for the Republican party as we know it and hence all over for the United States of America as we know it. The Reagan period now looks like a blip. Only once has a Republican presidential candidate won the popular vote in 24 years.

We've lost when we were the incumbent party and the economy was perceived to be doing badly; we've lost when we were the challenger party when the economy was doing even worse.

In future, our elections will be like those in Britain or New York. We will be presented with a choice between a statist liberal and an out-there uber-liberal. And with the uber-liberal enjoying the full backing of the media and Hollywood, it'll by no means be an easy win for the ordinary Mike Bloomberg or David Cameron-style liberal, who will be portrayed as a heartless plutocrat if he happens to come from money, or as a hopeless rube if he happens to come from nowhere.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/08/2012 14:31 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [289 views] Top||

#1  I'm not so certain. While nothing has changed at the federal level, still, despite all that was spent, the Democrats were fought to a standstill, only managing to hold on to the status quo. Meanwhile, at the state level the Republicans strengthened their hold on legislatures and governorships. This means budgets will be balanced, staffing and projects will be downsized, and public workers' unions will be broken in the red states. Megan McCardle had a very interesting piece yesterday on the meaning of Tuesday's election going forward, and wrote more on the subject today. Yesterday she concluded:

But I am highly skeptical that last night means they've [the Republicans] gone into some sort of permanent decline. It was a close election in which Obama lost states that he carried in 2012. The Democratic bench is very weak--the current leading candidates to succeed Obama, Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden, will be 69 and 74 in 2016. And Obama is going to have to preside over some very, very tough choices. We can't borrow a trillion dollars a year for another four years. Nor can we get all the money from Republican constituencies; they just don't have enough of the stuff. Whoever's ox Obama chooses to gore will probably be a considerably less enthusiastic coalition member come 2016.
Posted by: trailing wife || 11/08/2012 17:08 Comments || Top||

#2  Two more years of this leftist liberal out-there uber crap and people in this country will either be shaken into sanity and bring about change or be trying to escape a Detroit-like national mess.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/08/2012 17:09 Comments || Top||

#3  The problem is that the Republicans lost where they should have won. Like VA, OH. Nevada is crumbling in this economy and they still went with Obama.

The Democrats have promised salvation in exchange for such small things as servitude and the mass of Americans are willing to sell.
Posted by: Jame Retief || 11/08/2012 17:21 Comments || Top||

#4  Iff Net allegations are correct that VPOTUS Biden is indeed suffering from adult/senior citizen dementia, he will have to be politely retired or otherwise removed from presidential-level politics for the safety of the country, espec as per the NatComAuth = Nuclear Football - THAT EFFEC MEANS ONLY HILLARY IS LEFT.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 11/08/2012 21:19 Comments || Top||

#5  I think that the pubs are finished. We need independents that come together for issues. I am sick of the country republican leadership. We do not need them, in fact they are a reliability. A grass roots base is what we already have. We let the commie dems define the debate. That is idiotic. Sun Tzu and John Boyd are spinning in their graves.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 11/08/2012 22:00 Comments || Top||


Marc Faber's Asset Protection Plan: "Buy A Machine Gun", No Really, "You're Right, Buy A Tank"
Posted by: tipper || 11/08/2012 02:16 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [254 views] Top||

#1  The only safe thing to do is dig your own grave & lie in it.
Posted by: Anguper Hupomosing9418 || 11/08/2012 18:04 Comments || Top||


20 things that went right on Election Day
Excerpting the top 10:
1. Republicans retained control of the U.S. House of Representatives.

2. Voters in Alabama, Montana, and Wyoming all passed measures limiting Obamacare.

3. Tea Party candidate Ted Cruz, one of the conservative movement's brightest rising stars, overcame establishment GOP opposition to clinch a U.S. Senate victory in Texas.

4. Corruptocrat Beltway barnacle Rep. Pete Stark was finally kicked out of office in California.

5. Despite entrenched teachers' union opposition, a charter school initiative in Washington state triumphed.

6. Despite entrenched Big Labor support, a radical collective bargaining power grab in Michigan failed.

7. Oklahoma voters said no to government race-based preferences in college admissions, public contracting, and government hiring.

8. Montana voters said no to boundless benefits for illegal aliens.

9. Washington state approved taxpayer-empowering limitations on its state legislature's ability to raise taxes.

10. For the first time since Reconstruction, the GOP won control of the Arkansas state house.
Posted by: badanov || 11/08/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [328 views] Top||

#1  11. 58,000,000 voted against the radical leftist agenda. :)
Posted by: wr || 11/08/2012 0:47 Comments || Top||

#2  11b. Unfortunately, that 58,000,000 is 2,000,000 fewer than voted for McCain in 2008. The trend is heading in the wrong direction!
Posted by: Chuck || 11/08/2012 1:21 Comments || Top||

#3  Obama got five million votes than in 2008, but despiterunning at a time Republicans was at an all time low MCain got 2 (other sources tell 3) million votes than Romney


Possible reasons:


1) People refusing to vote for a Mormon.

2) Ron Paul nutties. I was shocked when on elction day I saw in Fox news that Ron Paul ws telling that here was little difference between Obama and Romney. It is time you run a stack through the old fool: despite whta he seems tobeleive an isolationnist America would not lead islamofascists and ayatollahs to sing hKumbaya just as it would not hace waorked on Hitler and Tojo.

Posted by: JFM || 11/08/2012 2:30 Comments || Top||

#4  JFM: That Democrats and Republicans candidates are indistinguishable is the standard party line for Libertarians, at least from what I glean from reading their websites. Some seem almost gleeful that Romney lost.
Posted by: Glusoger Gruter1463 || 11/08/2012 6:16 Comments || Top||

#5  I should have read this article first. One should count their blessings.

I was glad to see Tennessee mentioned. Republicans do have control of the Governor's office and the Legislature. The Legislature has a supermajority. We also have a Right-to-Work law and are fiscally responsible. We don't spend more than we have.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/08/2012 8:48 Comments || Top||

#6  I wish we could strengthen the 10th Amendment and weaken Washington's role in State's affairs. However, that is wishful thinking.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/08/2012 8:51 Comments || Top||

#7  During the primaries Mitt was never popular among Republicans. He only won by carpet bombing the opposition until he was literally the last man standing. As a result of Mitt's carpet bombing, Republican turnout in primaries went down.

Mitt is a decent, moral man -- with very little daylight between his positions and Obama's. That, right there, is a central issue. We need to offer a real choice, not a watered down version of the same thing (or in Mitt's case on Climate Change and other major issues, exactly the same thing).

Since 2010 the GOP establishment has been at war with the Tea Party. People like Dick Luger, Boehner, Mitch McConnell, etc. would much rather be in the minority than kicked out of office by us unwashed masses. From their standpoint, Tuesday was a huge win (except Luger, may he rot in Hell).

They will try the same thing in 2014 and 2016. Between then and now, the Tea Party types need to take control of the party, even if it means losing seats. Otherwise we can look forward to losing again and again, and being blamed each time for it.
Posted by: Iblis || 11/08/2012 14:47 Comments || Top||

#8  I'm generally a libertarian at the state level (I also look at their gun credentials, though most libertarians are pro-gun). Nat'l level - I vote (R) - I've never voted (D) for pres or senate and never will. That said, I can vouch that some of my friends who might have went Romney voted for Ron Johnson in MI & Ohio.
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 11/08/2012 16:19 Comments || Top||

#9  Oh yeah, let me qualify something I did vote Perot way back when because I thought Bush Sr was weak and Dole was country club...and I hated clinton...(ah, youthful zeal & naievity on my part for voting indy those times)
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 11/08/2012 16:22 Comments || Top||

#10  Posted by: Iblis 2012-11-08 14:47
Mitt is a decent, moral man -- with very little daylight between his positions and Obama's.

Could you please go a little more deeper on the no differences, cause I saw and heard lots of difference with major issues, and I keep reading and hearing that -- little help would be welcomed.

For me, some difference and leaving out Obamacare 'cause they hung him on that one:
Romney
Pro life
Marriage between man and woman
Lower taxes
Reform the tax codes
Reform Medicare
School vouchers
Remove government regulations that are strangling businesses.
Keystone Pipeline
Drill, baby drill
Will be Israel's best friend.

Oh and I forget, he wants to kill Big Bird, put women in binders, and vote for love of country, not for revenge.

Enlighten me please.



Posted by: Sherry || 11/08/2012 17:42 Comments || Top||

#11  Sherry:

You are looking at campaign promises. I am focussing on what Romney did in his 4 miserable years as governor vs Champ's 4 miserable years as president. The similarities are disturbing at best, right down to hiring the exact same advisors in some cases.
Posted by: Iblis || 11/08/2012 18:05 Comments || Top||

#12  If the election of 2010 energized the TEA Party folks, the election of 2012 showed they would never be accepted by the deeply-entrenched Rethuglycons that control the party at the very top. Time to quit supporting them and go off on our own. No more money, no more support, and no more campaigning for anyone but TEA Party people. There isn't enough room between the upper-level Rethuglycons and Dummycheats (they all want more government, more control, more power for themselves, and screw the little people) for a single photon to get through. It's time for the TEA Party to start running candidates that are independent of both the other parties.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 11/08/2012 18:18 Comments || Top||

#13  Posted by: Iblis 2012-11-08 18:05
to Sherry --
That's good, but I haven't lived in MA -- so I still don't know any specifics. That's not helping me..... give me three things Romney did that is the same as Obama (Romneycare doesn't count)

And who are the people they both hired?

That's what I'm asking --- specifics, you gave me the same generalities as "campaign promises."
Posted by: Sherry || 11/08/2012 20:38 Comments || Top||

#14  Why does ObamaCare not count?

I'm on my mobile so the list won't be complete, but you can start with John Holdren, assault weapons ban and higher taxes. Mitt raised taxes in the form of fees, but it amounts to the same thing. He was also pro-choice and pro gay rights, though he denies it now.

I worked on his '94 Senate campaign. Do a search for my comments here over the summer. Mitt has always been nothing but heartbreak for conservatives.
Posted by: Iblis || 11/08/2012 21:06 Comments || Top||

#15  Posted by: Iblis 2012-11-08 18:05

Thanks for your direction -- I'll do some looking -- but would like to continue the conversation....
Posted by: Sherry || 11/08/2012 21:43 Comments || Top||

#16  And Iblis the Romneycare isn't counted, cause Obama did a good job, convincingly, painting Romney as the grandfather of his plan...
Posted by: Sherry || 11/08/2012 21:45 Comments || Top||

#17  Sherry:

Fair enough. Some more names for you:

Jon Gruber, Jon Kingsdale, and John McDonough all worked on Romneycare and were consulted by Obama on Obamacare.

And a link to Romney's Planned Parenthood questionnaire.
Posted by: Iblis || 11/08/2012 23:06 Comments || Top||


Mrs.Malkin: Conservatives must stand tall
An excerpt:
We have so much to be proud of tonight:

*Diligent Tea Party activists grew the limited government movement and organized -- producing winning candidates across the country at the local, state, and national levels.

*A new generation of citizen activists online helped contribute to the vigilant policing of media bias and White House lies on everything from Fast and Furious to Solyndra to Benghazi.

*Conservative women pushed back more forcefully than ever against Democrat femme-a-gogues and Planned Parenthood promoters.

*Small business owners, Republican blue-collar workers, minority conservatives, young conservatives, religious liberty advocates, and growing numbers of Hollywood conservatives all stood up and made their voices heard.

Once again, we have our work cut out for us. We lost this election, but we still live in the greatest country on the planet and we still have many ways to fight for and defend it.

My counsel to you tonight: Please, do not be bitter. Do not fall prey to the Beltway blame game. Do not get mired in small things. Do not become vengeful creatures like our political opponents who voted out of spite instead of love of country.

We still have boundless blessings to count -- and to secure.

I remain a proud, unrepentant believer in the American Dream. And I know you do, too. Freedom will endure because we will keep fighting for it. We can't afford not to, friends.

Earlier this evening, when many conservatives on Twitter started despairing, I quoted from Psalm 46:10. Elections come and go. Faith endures:

He says, "Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth."

Chins up. Stand tall. We'll fight again tomorrow.
Posted by: badanov || 11/08/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [274 views] Top||

#1  The pep talk by Malkin is good. A great many thanks to Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney for stepping up to the plate. Ryan and Romney were good men who fought the good fight despite the incessant attacks on their character. There is no doubt in my mind who the better candidates were morally. Is morality even a consideration in the selection of candidates? There seems to be a double standard.

Many of us are a little down still post-election. I suppose the thing to do after the post election blues is to organize, organize, and organize at the grass roots level for the next round of elections in 2014. It is necessary to find suitable candidates and reform leaders for local and national elections. Somehow, the demographics problems are going to have to be addressed at the Presidential level. Obama was not a great candidate the second term but somehow he appealed to the young voters 18-29 yrs old. He also appealed to young women. He got 71% of the Hispanic vote and 94% of the black vote. I don't know whether the Jewish vote shifted since 2008. I don't don't how the Muslim vote went but I suppose for Obama judging from their convention. The base of the Pubs doesn't seem very cohesive. I don't know where the Catholic vote was in this election. I would have thought that with the abortion issue and the assault on religion, the Catholics would have gone for Romney. Likewise the evangelical vote. That is a large group. Did they vote for Romney? Did they support Romney or stay home because he is Mormon? Who did Asians vote for--which Asians? Cubans? Who did the military vote for assuming their votes made it to the US. The demographics need to be sifted very carefully. Romney's ground game needs to be looked at to see if there were areas where and how it could have been more effective in getting out the vote. The Pubs need to see where their election strategies fell down.

I don't know what you do about a MSM that has become a bunch of partisan water bearers and cheerleaders for the far left. I don't know how you address their failure to address stories like Benghazi and Fast and Furious. I am surprised more attention has not been given to taking a look at George Soros and organizations around him and their buying of the American press and media.

I don't know how Pubs address the hateful, vitriolic destruction of their candidates by the left and the continual passes given to the left wing candidates.

We send our children to left leaning universities and it is no surprise what we get--left leaning democratic voters after four years of indoctrination. Same can be said for journalism schools--we get a left leaning media coming out of these schools. The large schools take money from the Federal government and it is no surprise that they are splinters of the Federal government.

I know I am ranting, but the questions posed will always loom in the background and influence elections for the Pubs. How does one deal with that?
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/08/2012 8:40 Comments || Top||


Stratfor's George Friedman on The Election
I think he's too sanguine on what Obama can do domestically, but in any case, here's the "realist" perspective.
Posted by: charger || 11/08/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [280 views] Top||

#1  The President does not really LEAD the country so much as he reflects the country. Like it or not, Obama pretty accurately reflects today's United States of America. The population of younger and/or black and/or Hispanic Americans is growing and is overwhelmingly collectivist. The individualists (who arguably are responsible for making America great) are aging and dying off. That's just demographics.
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/08/2012 13:20 Comments || Top||

#2  And that's what scares me Glenmore. I do have some small faith, that in time it will work out because the Hispanics do love to have their own farm.
Posted by: Shipman || 11/08/2012 18:11 Comments || Top||


Courage for the Long War Ahead
On November 6, the people of the United States rejected President Barack Obama. And re-elected him to a second term in office.

Though Obama failed to win a majority in the popular vote--and may even have lost the popular vote outright--he won enough votes in the Electoral College to claim victory. The same constitutional peculiarity that brought George W. Bush into office in 2000 may have returned Obama to the White House.

The voters also re-affirmed the results of the historic Tea Party election of 2010, returning Republicans to power in the House of Representatives. And yet the voters also retained Democrats in control of the Senate, preserving the results of the anti-war wave election of 2006.

The U.S. Congress is now divided between two parties whose members were elected on platforms of protest, each determined to stop the other from pursuing its policies.

In the days that follow, great efforts will be spent on explaining the results as consequences of many factors, big and small.

Perhaps Obama would have lost if not for Hurricane Sandy. Perhaps Romney would have won if he had fought harder over Benghazi or pushed back against personal attacks. Perhaps the GOP is out of touch with the country's changing mores and demographics. Perhaps Democrats have not yet reckoned with fiscal reality.

Both sides lost. The American people, in effect, handed a vote of no confidence to Washington.
Posted by: Au Auric || 11/08/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [318 views] Top||

#1  Perhaps the GOP is out of touch with the country's changing mores and demographics.

Yeah, been hearing that alot today. Tent too small, etc... Have (fleetingly) considered the idea that, maybe, resources should be provided to organizations providing antitheses to the more hard core left organizations (i.e. New Black Panther Party, etc.) rather than funding those inclined to becoming "Conservative Light" (Liberal)......
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/08/2012 12:39 Comments || Top||

#2  One problem the Republican Party faces in enlarging its tent to be more inclusive of its natural allies, the libertarians, is that by definition libertarians pretty much can't be organized. Just try rounding up a herd of 'em to haul off to the polls....
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/08/2012 13:31 Comments || Top||

#3  Another problem is that as far as libertarians who sat out last week are concerned, if they were on fire, I wouldn't be in too big a hurry to take my HZT losartan.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 11/08/2012 15:35 Comments || Top||

#4  You're going to have to find someone who doesn't give enough of a shit about the republic to be upset but who still gives a shit enough to reach out.

Maybe there's someone like that out there, but it ain't me.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 11/08/2012 15:37 Comments || Top||

#5  "Perhaps the GOP is out of touch with the country's changing mores and demographics."

-mixed bag. Mores, yes...demographics, no. Romney lost because his tactics were weak & the GOP cannot keep pace w/Dem propensity to promise handouts. Obama 2012 had approx 10-million less votes than 2008 but still won by abt 2.8 million in pop vote. Romney 2012 underperformed McCain 2008 by almost 3-million votes. My logic (though often faulty) leads me to believe it's about the entitlement, stupid. My advice to the GOP: Stop being Dem light. Don't try to be something your not. Tell the people you believe in the U.S. Const and why. Tell them why balanced budgets, lower taxes, less spending, less regulations means prosperity. If they then still want to vote in Libs - let them. Their entitlements will not be there. Mathematics. Sooner than later, the $$ runs out. And, it's okay to stop playing nice. I would've hit Bammer on Benghazi, Fast/Furious, sequestration -- hard as hell and over and over. Also, go ahead and go on all the t.v. shows - have your shit together & hit their hosts right in the proverbial face. I find condescending sarcasm usually works. "Right Mr. Matthews, because that worked so well in 1979...so what your saying is that we should be using the Bolshevik economic model as a long term strategy for success..."
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 11/08/2012 16:10 Comments || Top||

#6  And this from Drudge:

FIRST ON CNN: Iranian jets fire on U.S. drone
The Obama administration did not disclose the incident, which occurred just days before the presidential election on November 1, but three senior officials confirmed the details to CNN.

http://security.blogs.cnn.com/2012/11/08/first-on-cnn-iranian-jets-fire-on-u-s-drone/?hpt=hp_t3

(Linky thingie no workie....)
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/08/2012 16:28 Comments || Top||

#7  Someone needs to make the point to libertarians that they should not field a presidential candidate until they have a few seats in the Senate. If they pushedcresiurces into capturing a few senate seats folks coukd vote for them without throwing away their presidential vote.

House seats would be even better.

If you cant capture a single district you have no business gumming up the presidential race.
Posted by: Rjschwarz || 11/08/2012 18:26 Comments || Top||

#8  Someone needs to make the point to libertarians that they should not field a presidential candidate until they have a few seats in the Senate

They need a grounding in reality first.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/08/2012 21:58 Comments || Top||

#9  Reality is a crutch for some.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 11/08/2012 22:01 Comments || Top||

#10  AceofSpadesHQ also has a post on how GOTV efforts from Romney completely fell apart because of flat-out incompetence.
Posted by: Charles || 11/08/2012 22:31 Comments || Top||


Home Front: WoT
The persistent prejudice you've never heard of
Anti-Christianism, to coin a term.
Posted by: tipper || 11/08/2012 15:28 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [256 views] Top||

#1  Oh.
I thought you meant the comedic bashing of middle aged white men.
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/08/2012 23:45 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Army's concerns
[Dawn] AS the country digests the army chief’s latest foray into, strictly speaking, non-military matters, it appears that Gen Kayani
... four star general, current Chief of Army Staff of the Mighty Pak Army. Kayani is the former Director General of ISI...
’s comments on Monday were directed at his prin-cipal constituency: the armed forces itself. The discomfort within the rank and file and the leadership too in recent weeks is not very difficult to fathom. Mehrangate, the NLC scam, inquiries into a luxury resort in Lahore, and myriad other questions about the army’s political role and management of security affairs have all combined to probably create a sense of siege. For an institution as proud and domestically predominant as the army has been over the decades, it may well be bewildering to be subjected to the kind of scrutiny and commentary that non-uniformed leaders have long been used to. So Gen Kayani’s words — targeted as they appear to have been against the judiciary and sections of the media, and not really the civilian politicianship — were probably intended to allay concerns within the armed forces that somewhat legitimate criticism of narrow problems, from the army’s perspective, were growing into wanton and gratuitous criticism of the entire institution.

Questionable as the army’s concerns may be — those never subjected to intense scrutiny will always resist a changing order — it is perhaps a sign of the times, and a good one at that, that the army chief chose tough words instead of strong action. In eras past, a discreet phone call or a public swipe would have been enough to tamp down criticism and make unwanted investigations disappear. So perhaps in time, even the dubious use of the ISPR to put out such controversial statements will be a practice curbed.

For the long road to civilian control of the state to be travelled, however, one of the key elements is the question of who determines the ‘national interest’. Gen Kayani was correct in saying that “no individual or institution has the monopoly to decide what is right or wrong in defining the national interest” and that it should emerge through a “consensus”. But in truth, it must go much further than that in a truly democratic polity. While other institutions do have some role to play, the central pivot has to be the civilian leadership that represents the will of the people through parliament. It cannot and must not be forgotten that the internal and external instability the country faces today is largely rooted in policies pursued by the army itself in the name of the national interest. But if a few court cases and investigations so unsettle the armed forces, can they really be willing to cede control of the ‘national interest’?
Posted by: Fred || 11/08/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [241 views] Top||


Religion and politics
[Dawn] RELIGIOUS extremism has come under discussion in numerous forums as incidents of violence and terrorism have increased in recent years reflecting negatively on what many claim to be Pakistain's Islamic identity. This has left people confused because whatever is done is in the name of religion. Yet the situation is getting worse.

Has it to be so? Created as a homeland for the Moslems of the subcontinent as a result of a political struggle spearheaded by secular leaders, Pakistain was soon after its birth hijacked by elements who have used Islam as a lever to gain control over society and the state. These were parties that had vociferously opposed the creation of Pakistain.

Weak and lacking in confidence, the politicianship, that constantly denied its support for a theocratic state, went on the defensive. Without the vision to anticipate what its weak stance would lead to, the Moslem League went all out to champion the cause of Islam in public life. The Objectives Resolution adopted by the Constituent Assembly in 1949 was the first demonstration of this weakness. This in due course succeeded in creating rifts between the Moslem majority and those who follow other faiths.

In 1974, Z.A. Bhutto, a supposedly liberal and secular leader, finding himself on a weak political wicket didn't hesitate to play the religion card. He declared the Ahmadis non-Moslem, thus arrogating to the state the privilege of deciding who is or is not a Moslem. Yet he could not save his political career or his life.

This is not how it was supposed to be. When the Pakistain resolution of 1940, that conceptualised 'independent states' as a homeland for the Moslems, was adopted it was clearly stated: "Adequate, effective and mandatory safeguards should be specifically provided in the constitution for minorities in these units and in these regions [where the Moslems are in a majority] for the protection of their religious, cultural, economic, political, administrative and other rights and interests in consultation with them...."

In his Aug 11, 1947 inaugural speech to the Constituent Assembly, the Quaid-e-Azam said, "You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place of worship in this State of Pakistain. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed -- that has nothing to do with the business of the state... We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one state...."
That was then; the past is a different country.
Then what went wrong? Why do non-Moslems feel so insecure in a state whose founding fathers had promised them full protection? They suffer discrimination in jobs and education, have spurious charges of blasphemy levelled against them, their young daughters are kidnapped and forcibly converted, many are targeted and as a result those who can are fleeing this country.

Even though the vast majority disapproves of these ways it lacks the strength and courage to speak out because the state provides no security to its citizens be they of any faith. As a result many non-Moslems live in fear. The report of the National Commission on Peace and Justice documenting the contents of our school textbooks establishes how the authorities actively promote hatred against other faiths. This religion-bashing has vitiated the socioeconomic atmosphere for the minorities and reinforced the mullah elements' drive to gain control over society.

It is time we addressed this issue before it is too late and the irrational faceless myrmidons take total control of state policies. In a consultation organised by the Pakistain Institute of Labour Education and Research recently, members of non-Moslem communities objected to their being referred to as 'minorities'. They felt it symbolised a discriminatory and exclusivist approach that separated them from the mainstream and thus negated the equal status that Article 25 of the constitution grants them. Although the basic law spells out many safeguards for the rights of non-Moslems, the Pakistain Penal Code has provisions which militate against these safeguards.

In the present situation, the religious parties have plenty of space to promote their agendas of exclusivity. A section of the electronic media has played a disgusting role in the whole affair. They have fanned the fires of hatred against minorities by giving undue publicity to the hate-mongers in the name of promoting Islam. Has anyone pondered the real motives?

Asghar Ali Engineer, an Indian social activist, who has investigated scores of communal riots in India, once told me that without fail he has found an economic motive behind every act of violence in the name of religion. Sometimes, title to land was at stake. At other times business rivalry or employment was the causative factor. In our case political power is also the coveted goal.

In this context the move by former senator Iqbal Haider to form a democratic and non-party platform to promote secularism is a significant one. In its inaugural declaration the forum spoke of creating public awareness about secularism and the need to remove distortions in laws by approaching politicians, state functionaries, the media and trade unions to facilitate a new narrative of Pak nationhood based on social justice for all.

This is not an easy task but the former senator has committed supporters. So far the going has been slow. Until the forum is broadened into a mass movement it will not make any impact. The absence of this awareness has allowed the obscurantists to take centre stage.
Posted by: Fred || 11/08/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [250 views] Top||


International-UN-NGOs
Next IPCC report will 'scare the wits out of everyone'
Former UN Official says climate report will shock nations into action
John Gardner writes in with an entry from the "worse than we thought" department:

The IPCC seems to be pre-empting the growing skeptical science by preparing to issue an 'its even worse than we thought' report in 2013, according to a report in the Australian newspaper.

"The Brisbane Times', which quotes Ivo De Boer, the UN climate chief during the 2009 Copenhagen talks. He is quoted "That report is going to scare the wits out of everyone,"
Only of those who believe junk science, so that's ok.
Mr De Boer said in the only scheduled interview of his visit to Australia.

"I'm confident those scientific findings will create new political momentum."

Read more:
Posted by: tipper || 11/08/2012 01:43 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [277 views] Top||

#1  Tar and feather these scammers.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/08/2012 7:36 Comments || Top||

#2  Picture from the Press interview.

Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 11/08/2012 11:08 Comments || Top||

#3  IPCC? Sometime I think we are living in a world as irrational as the ones in Jack Vance's Garan Reach novels, with their IPCC.
Posted by: Eric Jablow || 11/08/2012 17:29 Comments || Top||

#4  Will the Singularity Save Us from Peak Oil? Global Climate Change? What's this about the ocean acidification? Is that worse than global climate change warming? Why is everything so damn bad all of a sudden? I blame Obama.
Posted by: Shipman || 11/08/2012 18:00 Comments || Top||

#5  More likely to find it hilarious than frightening.
Posted by: Iblis || 11/08/2012 20:39 Comments || Top||

#6  Its anticipated the Bammer Admin will prolly weaken US Foreign Policy during his second term -IIUC, it has to be ForPol because the US-World economy is already shot.

To paraph campaign-stumping BILL CLINTON > THERE IS NO ECON PLAN BECAUSE THE ECON CAN'T BE FIXED.

As for GWCC, as per VARIOUS > PERTS = the much-ballyhooed 2013 SOLAR MAXIMA is apparen starting off on a disappointing note.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 11/08/2012 21:28 Comments || Top||


Israel-Palestine-Jordan
Israel On The Roulette Table
[Ynet] Obama created tense relations with Netanyahu by choosing Cairo over Jerusalem

Secretly, Netanyahu would have like to see Romney in the White House. People, like countries, have a tendency to connect to those who smile at them. Netanyahu would have loved to help Romney get elected and get rid of Obama's bitterness and the tense relations. But the Israeli prime minister never went public with these wishes.

Despite what his opponents claim, Netanyahu did not bet on Romney. The PM is not the gambling type (even though Sheldon Adelson, one of his biggest donors, is a gaming tycoon). You cannot accuse Netanyahu of being hesitant and unable to make decisions and at the same time allege that he is a wild gambler who takes risks.

Netanyahu did not create the tension with Obama. We should not confuse the victim with the rapist. It was Obama who chose to Cairo over Jerusalem; it was Obama who was photographed with his legs on the table while speaking with Netanyahu over the phone; and it was Obama who coerced Netanyahu into freezing construction in the settlements.

Obama's first term as president was problematic not only for Netanyahu, it was problematic for the entire State of Israel. The official support continues, but the fondness has vanished. Regardless of his relations with Netanyahu, Obama viewed Israel as a burden in the Middle East rather than a strategic asset.

On Wednesday Netanyahu will be accused of gambling on our future. If Romney would have won people would have talked about Netanyahu's luck, but since Obama won, Netanyahu will be accused of jeopardizing Israel's strategic ties with the US. The slogans are ready, as are the banners.

Perhaps a different prime minister would have been able to sustain a better relationship between Jerusalem and Washington, but the only gambler here was Obama, the president who put Israel on the roulette table four years ago and dreamt of winning the jackpot. The results, by the way, are not that great.
Posted by: trailing wife || 11/08/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [327 views] Top||

#1  See also DAILY TIMES.PK > OBAMA VICTORY SPELLS TROUBLE FOR NETANYAHU.

Iran remains highly unlikely to close the Strait of Hormuz this second time around as like the first - iff the Bammer stays the course on Diplomacy + Hard Sanctions, IT WILL MEAN NO US-LED AIR STRIKES ANDOR GROUND WAR AGZ IRAN UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. In Israel's = Netanyahu's mind, and rightly so, no US-led air strike or ground war means that IRAN WILL GET ITS NUKES.

Again, IRAN = THE BURDEN IS ON THE US + ISRAEL TO ATTACK IT FIRST, AND SEEMINGLY WIDOUT CAUSE AS IRAN DOES NOT [officially]INTEND TO BUILD ANY DE FACTO NUCLEAR WEAPONS [per the Japan/Egypt Model].
A unilateral Israeli attack means the start of a MAJOR REGIONAL OR TRANS-REGIONAL WAR [Global?] TO WHICH THE US CANNOT HOPE TO STAY NEUTRAL OR UN-INVOLVED. The US in LT may end up having to invade Iran in ground war whether it wants to or not.

Israel vee Iran in ME = Japan vee China in East China Sea, or PHIL vee China in South Sea.

* TOPIX > OBAMA'S SECOND TERM WILL WEAKEN US FOREIGN POLICY.

* DAILY TIMES.PK > OBAMA'S FULL PLATE [second POTUS term]: FISCAL CLIFF, IRAN, SYRIA, as well as Rising China + Uncertain Outcome(s) vee "Arab Spring" [Event + Govts.] + EuroZone/EUZ Crises.

* WORLD MILITARY FORUM > PLA ARMY NEWSPAPER: HOSTILE WESTERN FORCES, GOVTS. FEAR THE "ARMY OF MAO ZEDONG".

versus

* NEW YORK TIMES > THE PERMANENT MILITARIZATION OF AMERICA.

Goodbye America, hello Amerikka.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 11/08/2012 1:17 Comments || Top||

#2  Obama's first term as president was problematic not only for Netanyahu, it was problematic for the entire State of Israel. Ditto for the USA. The 47% spoke.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/08/2012 7:47 Comments || Top||

#3  I did say in an earlier comment - the very first thing I expected the Iranians to do after the Nov election was to go into another round of negotiations. And now what do we see - a proposed under-the-table plan for 3 months of talks between Tehran and Washington DC (according to Debka). Maybe Debka is wrong ... but it's typical of Tehran. I have to say - they've been the masters at the negotiating table so far.
Posted by: Raider || 11/08/2012 12:44 Comments || Top||

#4  Negotiation is a matter of convincing others you can and will do more than negotiate if you need to. Without credible threat it is pointless (see Viet Nam.)
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/08/2012 13:47 Comments || Top||

#5  It was reported one day ago from several sources that Valerie Jarrett was in Iran taking part in secret talks. As I recall, she was born in Tehran.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/08/2012 17:03 Comments || Top||

#6  Glenmore, you concept is correct, your example is wrong.... see Linebacker and Linebacker II

Pocket Money in particular gave the NV a real, solid reason to talk.

Your point is taken, but the example should have been with the final NVA offensive which the US Congress decided would only be allowed 1 billion bucks to defend against.

Then again.. I look at your comment and see you are completely correct. Never mind.



Posted by: Shipman || 11/08/2012 18:08 Comments || Top||



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A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.

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Two weeks of WOT
Thu 2012-11-08
  Syria raids Hamas offices months after group's leaders leave
Wed 2012-11-07
  Bombings, Clashes Kill 131 in Syria as Gunmen Assassinate Parliament Speaker's Brother
Tue 2012-11-06
  Suicide bomber kills at least 27 by army base near Baghdad
Mon 2012-11-05
  Grenade attack on Kenya church kills 1, wounds 14
Sun 2012-11-04
  Two Suicide Bombers Attack Restaurant in Somali Capital
Sat 2012-11-03
  30 people shot dead in Nigeria, rights group says
Fri 2012-11-02
  US withdraws its support for Syrian National Council
Thu 2012-11-01
  Armed Islamists on Tunis streets after clashes
Wed 2012-10-31
  18 militants killed in Khyber, Orakzai
Tue 2012-10-30
  Israel Hit by 18 Rockets as Hamas Seeks Revenge
Mon 2012-10-29
  52 Dead in Syria Clashes, Air Raids after Eid Truce Collapses
Sun 2012-10-28
  Almost 150 Killed on First Day of Syria Truce
Sat 2012-10-27
  Indonesia foils plot to attack US missions
Fri 2012-10-26
  Afghanistan mosque suicide bomb attack kills at least 41
Thu 2012-10-25
  Israel says 79 rockets fired at it from Gaza

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