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Saturday, September 15, 2007

Chilly Relations Growing Between Swiss and EU

Switzerland and the European Union have squared off for their latest round in an ongoing dispute over taxation. The EU has essentially accused Switzerland's policies on taxation to be 'harmful' and 'a violation of free trade agreements.'

Pope Benedict XVI certainly didn't help matters any when he issued a statement last week castigating 'some European nations' for the failure to follow EU policies on taxation.

Perhaps the Pope should learn to remain silent about matters about which he knows nothing.

The nations of the European Union are known for some of the most heavily taxed countries on earth, not to mention their penchant for promoting, implementing, and funding massive cradle-to-the-grave nanny-states that are known for rewarding mediocrity and undercutting every known natural human motive for productivity.

The one oasis in this vast human desert of irrationality has been Switzerland. As we reported last week on The Liberty Sphere, Switzerland has become a target of leftists and their allies among immigrants. Apparently, a vibrant economy, a strong defense that depends on individual armed citizens, and a rugged individualism that insists on democratic values are an affront to those who prefer the collectivism of big government.

Not only does the EU have its underwear in a bunch over Switzerland, but now even the Pope thinks he should weigh in on the decisions of a sovereign nation that has been no threat to anyone in its history, except to those who despise liberty.

Relations between Switzerland and the EU began to chill even further when two major corporations, Kraft Foods, Inc. and Proctor and Gamble Co. shifted their European headquarters to Switzerland.

The reason? Taxation.

Many of Switzerland's cantons exempt or partially exempt from taxation corporate profits that are generated outside the country. Not so in the EU.

Thus, rather than take a rational, pragmatic approach to keeping such corporate giants within the EU by amending its policy on taxation, the EU instead meddles in the affairs of a sovereign nation by demanding that Switzerland amend its policy on taxation to mirror that of the nations within the EU.

Predictably Switzerland is incensed. And rightly so. After all, would you as an American willingly accept the demands of a nation such as Denmark to dictate to us our policy on taxation?

Further, what if Denmark were upset that our taxes were not collected at the rate of roughly 50% of our income?

And by the way, Denmark's highest scale of taxation stands at 68%.

Observers of world politics and economics believe that the present skirmish between the Swiss and the EU signals a long period of very chilly relations between the two. The Swiss have already capitulated to outside demands by somewhat liberalizing their policies on the disclosure of financial information collected by its banks.

Switzerland's long-standing policy of complete privacy for investors in its financial institutions has been under attack by the EU and the rest of the world. In order to be perceived as a 'good neighbor' by the international community, Switzerland has begun to disclose some financial information to international law enforcement.

It is highly doubtful at this point that Switzerland would be in any mood to further let go of its time-honored traditions that have served the nation well.

Perhaps this is a good time to remind the leadership of the European Union that it does not have jurisdiction over the whole world, not even over all of Europe. The last time I checked, the capital of Switzerland was not Brussels.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Second Amendment News Roundup for 9/14/07

Focusing on guns and politics, here is today's Second Amendment News Roundup:

A Keyboard and a .45 informs us of a very intriguing conversation taking place on the question, why would a person pack heat in a church?"

Alphecca reports that New Jersey officials are attempting to put the squeeze on Pennsylvania because of its gun laws:

The McCarville Report has some interesting news on Oklahoma's new immigration law. The law targets illegal aliens, which has resulted in a mass exodus of Hispanic students from the Tulsa school system:

The Jet Pilot has an update on the Washington state school officer who is charged with sexual offenses:

Blogonomicon posts a PSH Alert over some stupidity about guns in New York:

Front Sight, Press has some very helpful info from John Farnam on exigent gun maintenance:

Liestoppers published a great response to an op-ed in the Raleigh News and Observer. Those of you who followed the Mike Nifong-Crystal Mangum-Duke lacrosse set-up are perhaps familiar with the name of Joan Foster of Liestoppers. We came to appreciate Joan as an astute legal mind and a brilliant writer. This is Joan's response to the editorial:

Red's Trading Post has the sickening news that the ATF has shut down even more gun dealers in Idaho (I think now they are just flaunting it in our faces):

Say Uncle posts the quote of the day, and it is a MUST-read:

Sharp as a Marble has the latest 'pants shittin' hysterics' from Paul Helmke of the Brady Gang:

Sebastian at Snow Flakes in Hell gives us a good report on the meeting of the NRA, of which he is a part:

Nicki at The Liberty Zone blogs on the new controller for Wii that Nintendo has introduced, thus causing some more 'pants shittin' hysterics' on the part of some parents:

The War on Guns posts this latest update as of today on Wayne Fincher:

Xavier Thoughts blogs on the Smith & Wesson Model 49 Bodyguard:

John Lott has written a new op-ed on the D.C. handgun ban:

Lott also opines that the Democrats simply can't distance themselves from

The Buckeye Firearms Association has this excellent read entitled, 'The Cost':

Buckeye also provides this article on the updated law on concealed carry records in Ohio:

Oscar Poppa provides this story of a murder by an illegal alien--a very common occurrence in America today:

Michelle Malkin posts vital info for those living within easy access to the D.C. area. Tomorrow there will be a 'die-in' war protest featuring Cindy Sheehan and others. As a counter-protest, patriots will be holding a 'gathering of the eagles' at the National Mall:

Political Ramifications of the Coming Hybrid Craze

With oil hitting $80 a barrel this week and with China set to become the world's top consumer of petroleum-based products, it is no wonder that most economic prognosticators see a coming boon to the production and sale of hybrid autos.

The introduction of the hybrid into the regular buying routine of the consumer is the first step of the free market in driving buyers away from oil.

Americans are the key indicators of free market trends, and Americans are increasingly deciding that gasoline is way too expensive for our type of economy. Further, it is useless at this point to compare U.S. gasoline prices to that of Britain or any other European country. The U.S. is a commuter-driven economy that is entirely dependent on the demand for autos rather than mass transit.

Thus, it is too easy for one to point to the significantly higher costs of gasoline in Great Britain and claim, therefore, that Americans are too whiny.

If drivers in Great Britain were forced to endure the commuter miles of most working Americans in most of our larger cities, I highly doubt that Britons would be talking about how good Americans have it.

Yes, gasoline is much cheaper here than in England, but we drive infinitely more miles to and from work than Britons. Thus, we consume much more gasoline, which of course means that we spend far more on it.

Further, not only are Americans wary of rising gas prices but they wish to be independent of foreign oil. I suspect that most Americans are like me; they long for the day when we can tell the Saudis and other Arab countries, along with Iraq, Iran, Russia, and Mexico, to simply go jump. We don't need their freakin' oil anymore.

Such countries have held the oil matter over our heads for much too long. We have had enough. Let the Chinese be the hostages of Middle Eastern oil for a while.

Thus, with factors such as the free market squeeze on the pocketbook and the emotional/political issue of hating to be held captive by nations that are centuries behind the rest of civilization, we are set to see a new phase of American consumerism. i.e., the hybrid.

On Wednesday at the International Auto Show in Frankfurt, Germany, BMW announced that it will unveil a new auto to add to its fleet of luxury cars--the X6, which has a hybrid equivalent. The X6 is a coup crossover, which BMW bills as its 'sports activity coup.'

With the first of BMW's new concept cars set to roll off the assembly line in 2009, the X6 will be built at BMW's North American operations plant in Spartanburg County, South Carolina.

BMW refers to the hybrid version of the X6 as its 'activehybrid,' which is powered by a gasoline engine and two high-performance electric motors, along with a brake energy regeneration system.

The big news about the new car, however, is that this is BMW's very first venture into hybrid technology. As one auto analyst put it, 'This shows that hybrids are not only here to stay but set to seize a sizable portion of the market.'

Of course hybrid technology is not new. Both Honda and Toyota have had hybrid models on the market for nearly ten years. And U.S. automakers began mass production of hybrid models in earnest five years ago.

Yet hybrid autos have been slow to catch on with the general public. This may be quickly coming to a close. As more Americans decide they must take action to buffer the brunt of higher gasoline prices, there is no doubt that hybrids will look much more appealing.

And with mass production and higher sales, those hybrids will in all probability become more affordable for the average family.

The coming shift in consumer markets will lead to a realignment of political alliances. One can easily imagining closer ties with Japan, Germany, and even India, while nations such as Saudi Arabia, Dubai, and others in the oil-rich region lose much of their economic and political clout.

In the meantime it will be exciting to watch how the free market and American ingenuity lead the way in providing long-term solutions for our current energy problems. The hybrid is only the beginning.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Second Amendment News Roundup for 9/13/07

Scroll down for the news:

Images courtesy of A Human Right.

Focusing on guns and politics, here is today's Second Amendment News Roundup:

The War on Guns issues a call to immediate action on the new California microstamping law, which is now on the Governor's desk. Urgent action is needed to encourage the Governor to veto the measure:

Red's Trading Post's Ryan Horsley has been invited to speak before a group of Montana Republicans on ATF abuse, and will be speaking on the same subject before the Twin Falls County Republican Women:

The McCarville Report announces a new 1.1 billion dollar Boeing contract for Oklahoma:

Alphecca reports the amusing news that three high-level Mexican cops have been busted for purchasing 'illegal firearms.' This is amusing given their incessant griping about 'lax' U.S. gun laws:

Blogonomicon posts an interesting vintage 1956 letter to the editor on guns:

Cameron Bailey reports that the high school in North Carolina that banned the U.S. flag has now rescinded the ban:

Of Arms and the Law says that the teacher in Oregon, who had a run-in with administrators over carrying a firearm, has brought a lawsuit over CCW:

Oscar Poppa would like our comments on changes to his blog, or our suggestions for improvement:

Random Ramblings of a Republitarian has an intriguing personal story of a group of unnamed persons who had a rather interesting fascination with his firearms:

Say Uncle alerts us to some revolvers for sale:

Say Uncle also points to a post that gives us the reasons why a public health approach to firearms policy is pure B.S.:

Sharp as a Marble has yet another example of someone with an open mind coming to the realization that we 'gun nuts' are not really nuts after all:

The Bitch Girls blog on the upcoming NRA membership drive:

Nicki at The Liberty Zone comments on the fact that one of the Parker attorneys recently gave a speech at Cornell:

Nicki also takes on D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty:

Mr. Completely informs us of a new event that has been added to the annual Gun Bloggers Rendezvous:

John Lott says that there is some alleged voter fraud in Texas revolving around dozens of 'undocumented' persons participating in elections:

The Buckeye Firearms Association reports yet another murder in a gun-free zone:

Gun Law News posts an update to the Joaquin Jackson debacle:

Gun Owners of America reports it has provided all U.S. Senators with several potential pro-gun amendments that could be attached to H.R. 2640. It is to be hoped that somebody in the chamber will successfully get one or more of these crucial amendments attached to the bill:

Pain Control Highlights Flawed U.S. War on Drugs

The 'War on Drugs' is a war that should have never been fought. Hindsight is 20/20, and while President Ronald Reagan had good intentions in implementing the war in the early 1980s, he was enough of a pragmatist to recognize that a policy had failed, even his own.

While Reagan exhibited a remarkable and admirable ability to adhere steadfastly to broad principles, such as limited government, low taxes, a strong defense, and maximized personal liberty, he could also demonstrate a sometimes surprising flexibility that led him to reverse some of his earlier decisions.

The war on drugs has been an abject failure, and had Reagan lived to see its effects, I have absolutely no doubt that he would say so and support changing the policy.

The U.S. has spend billions of dollars fighting this war that has proved to be an exercise in futility, resulting in a massive crime-and-violence plagued black market and a powerful gang of drug lords in this country and outside this country who are rolling in dough.

If the U.S. were to end the war on drugs and de-criminalize simple possession and use, upwards of 60% of the prison beds in the nation today would be freed up for the incarceration of violent criminals. As it stands, non-violent drug offenders occupy an estimated 60% of prison space at a time when we are bombarded with stories of 'prison overcrowding.'

That overcrowding would end immediately if we were to release from prison non-violent drug offenders. Our streets would be safer due to the fact that the truly violent criminals would stay locked up rather than be subject to early release or parole due to prison overcrowding.

But the single most telling example that American culture's handling of drugs is flawed rests in the manner in which we deal with pain control.

Many physicians within the U.S. have been slow to adopt adequate pain control measures for their patients. The stories are many, and some of them are frightening.

Yet hospitals within the U.S. have for years insisted that pain control is perhaps the central issue in adequate medical care, apart from a competent, accurate, and timely ability to address the immediate medical issue at hand.

This is why at each interval along the continuum of care a patient receives at a hospital, beginning at admission and ending at discharge, a regular assessment is made to determine the patient's pain level.

If you have had surgery in the past seven years, one of the very first questions you were asked upon awaking from surgery--if you remember those moments--is, 'Describe your pain level on a scale of one to ten.' And if your pain level is determined to be moderate to severe, based upon the scale, you are immediately given medications to control your pain.

Yet with some doctors and nurses across the land, the ability to release archaic notions about pain medications has been painfully slow. One of the most often expressed concerns is the notion that giving pain control medications will make addicts out of patients who have shown absolutely no history or propensity for becoming addicted to anything at all.

In spite of the problem of drug addiction in this country, the fact remains that the vast majority of Americans never exhibit the slightest hint of addiction to pain medications, which are dispensed liberally each day.

Further, there is a vast difference between addiction and dependence. A patient with rheumatoid arthritis, for example, is no doubt dependent on NSAIDs, i.e. nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, which control pain and inflammation. Their very lives depend on a daily regimen of these medications. Yet few in the medical community would dare suggest that these patients are addicted to such medications.

Addiction is an entirely different animal, involving the overwhelming desire for more and more of the drug whether one needs it or not, and a downward spiral of being totally consumed by that drug to the neglect of life's necessities.

The mere fact that pain returns to an excruciating and unmanageable level when the drug is withdrawn is evidence that the patient is not addicted to that drug, but that the drug is needed to control the pain, or else the patient's quality of life reaches an intolerably low level.

America's phobia concerning pain medications is gradually abating, but there are still pockets of resistance. There is the true anecdote, for example, that a terminal cancer patient was refused pain medication, within one week of his death, for the fear that he would become an addict before he died.

Such antiquated views have no place in modern medical care. And to a great degree, our antiquated views toward 'the war on drugs' are also out of place in modern society.

Perhaps it is time for us to graduate up to the 21st century.

NOTICE! The opinion-editorial piece above is in no way intended to be used for medical advice or to provide guidance on the consumption of any drug for any purpose. For such advice or guidance, consult with a certified, competent medical professional.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Second Amendment News Roundup for 9/12/07

Scroll down for the news:

Images courtesy of A Human Right.

Focusing on guns and politics, here is today's Second Amendment News Roundup:

The McCarville Report says that U.S. Senator Tom Coburn rips the Democratic-controlled Senate after it rejected his amendments to put bridge safety ahead of ear-marks:

The Jet Pilot alerts us to a high school in North Carolina that banned the American flag...even on September 11:

A Keyboard and a .45 posts a timely reminder that gun owners and gun shop personnel are held to a very high standard of conduct when it comes to handling firearms. The failure to do so can end in tragedy:

Alphecca has an update on former Broward County, Florida Sheriff Ken Jenne, who is now a convicted felon:

Cameron Bailey makes the excellent point that many of the terminally ill die in severe pain merely because of our society's irrational fear of narcotic pain killers ('Oh, my, we can't possibly give him THAT! We may make an addict of him before he dies in three days!'):

Syd at Front Sight, Press, posts a thorough analysis of the microstamping mania in California:

Oscar Poppa has this to say about Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson's gun-grab attempt:

Say Uncle's regular segment on 'Chicks and Guns' points to a blog called 'The Hot Momma Revolution':

Sharp as a Marble blogs today on the subject of open carry:

Snow Flakes in Hell has a great pic of what he bought at Red's Trading Post on National Exercise Your Rights Day on Aug. 28:

The Bitch Girls report that Fred Thompson, Rudy Giuliani, Bill Richardson, and John McCain will be on hand for a major upcoming event. Read about it here:

Nicki at The Liberty Zone posts some cool photos of her latest ventures in her work for Uncle Sam in Kosovo:

The War on Guns provides some very good reasons why Ted Olsen for Attorney-General bodes ill for gun owners:

John Lott has a late-breaking update on the debate in Iowa on campus police carrying guns:

Michelle Malkin reports some EXPLOSIVE new information on the Hillary Clinton-Norman Hsu dirty money deal. It seems Hillary was pre-warned about Hsu, contrary to what she claims:

Melanie Phillips over in the U.K. posts a MUST-read concerning Britain's denial:

Fred Suggests Hillary Slow on the Learning Curve

When the story broke last week of Norman Hsu, the Democrats' campaign funds con man and the Democratic equivalent to Jack Abramoff, Hillary Clinton pledged to give back to the donors roughly $25,000 or so in order to wash her hands of the dirty money.

Today, however, we find that Hillary plans to return over three quarters of a million in dirty campaign contributions from individuals who had been bankrolled by Hsu.

It took Hillary nearly a week to decide to return all of the dirty money--this despite the fact that the Hsu-initiated donations are a clear violation of federal campaign finance laws. After all, nearly a million bucks is quite a sum to come out of her campaign war chest, illegal or not.

But according to Republican Presidential candidate Fred Thompson, Hillary may be a bit slow on the learning curve when it comes to dirty money. It would seem that Fred has first-hand knowledge of 'the Clinton clasp' when it comes to questionable campaign funds.

Thompson was the Chair of the Senate investigation into Clinton ties to illegal Asian-American contributions to Bill's 1996 re-election campaign, as well as the Clintons' legal defense fund in 1996.

According to The Examiner, 'In March 1996, Bill and Hillary Clinton's legal defense fund accepted money from straw donors recruited by Yah Lin "Charlie" Trie. The Taiwan-born Democrat hand-delivered hundreds of thousands of dollars' worth of checks and money orders in two manila envelopes to the defense fund.'

It was this discovery by Thompson's committee in 1996 that led Thompson to exclaim today, in an obvious rhetorical question to Hillary, 'Didn't you learn anything from Charlie Trie?'

Indeed, Senator. Apparently both Clintons are a bit slow on the learning curve when it comes to dirty campaign money. Even in a very important election campaign for the Clintons, Bill and Hillary are still up to their eyeballs in scandal revolving around questionable fundraising practices (a court case in California opened just this week on this matter) and illegal campaign contribution schemes.

That 'Clinton clasp' must involve a terrible case of sticky fingers, for Bill and Hillary find it awfully difficult to let go of ill-gotten gain that has anything to do with filthy lucre. One would think that, under normal conditions, people as intelligent as the Clintons would have learned their lesson long ago.

But corruption is not always an effective teacher. More often than not, when one heads down the slippery slope of winning at all costs, power-grabs that know no limits or ethical boundaries, and making shady deals with shadowy figures whose hands have shaken hands with the devil, there comes a point where there is no turning back.

One dirty deal leads to another, yet another, and still another, until finally the person involved has lost all contact with moral and ethical reality.

Is Hillary at that point?

No one can know for sure. What we do know, however, is that she has a penchant for associating herself with shady characters in the murky world of corrupt politics. And no matter how many times she comes close to losing it all over those dangerous liaisons, she always manages to do the same thing yet again.

So here we are in 2007 wondering why we are reconsidering the sleaze of 1996. It is all rather simple. Some people never learn.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Second Amendment News Roundup for 9/11/07

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On this day of remembrance, may be remember--
--What happened--we were attacked by Muslim extremists who killed 3000 innocent citizens
--Who did it--Osama bin Laden, Al Qaeda, and dozens of linked Jihadists groups
--Why it happened--Jihadists want to kill us unless we convert to Islam
--What to do about it--never forget, never give up, never stop fighting forces of darkness

Focusing on guns and politics, here is today's Second Amendment News Roundup:

The McCarville Report has this item for those with short memories:

Traction Control posts this tribute:

Random Ramblings of a Republitarian provides this sobering analysis of 9/11 memorials:

Mr. Completely writes that rates for the Gun Bloggers Rendezvous will be going up in just a few short days (that means register NOW to save money, if you plan to attend)...and provides a list of attendees:

Mr. Completely is a man after my own heart. He has the video of Fred Thompson's announcement for the Presidency and believes Fred will make an excellent President:

The Captain's Quarters has today's update on Hillary Clinton's dirty money--changing her original plan she announced last week, she is now returning over three quarters of a million bucks in dirty campaign contributions from Mr. Hsu:

JR at A Keyboard and a .45 reports that some scumbags have defaced the Viet Nam Memorial in Washington, DC:

Alphecca blogs on Ron Paul's call for the U.S. to leave the U.N.--and I fully agree. Alphecca also posts the names of the Senate traitors who voted against the Vitter amendment. In short, these turncoats would have sold U.S. sovereignty, and our gun rights, to the U.N. had they succeeded:

Speaking of Ron Paul, Alphecca invites his readers to participate in a debate on his blog concerning Ron Paul and Fred Thompson. It seems Alphecca is undecided at this point between the two candidates, and needs our help:

Tired of being called a 'gun nut'? Blogonomicon posts a great cartoon editorial on who the REAL nuts are:

Cameron Bailey says that Washington State taxpayers have some reason to hope:

Of Arms and the Law reports that a cross-petition has been filed in the Parker case:

Ryan Horsley at Red's Trading Post has this timely piece today entitled, 'When You Lose Your Rights':

Gun Law News points to more information that confirms that Barack Hussein Obama is a gun control freak:

The Ninth Stage informs us about a new resource for those of us who pack pistols:

The War on Guns presents data that show guns in the hands of citizens who save lives far outweigh those of the dimwits who give us a bad name:

John Lott reports that Fred Thompson now leads Rudy Giuliani nationally among likely Republican primary voters:

Lott also has this update on the debate concerning armed police at Iowa public universities:

Neil Smith at Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership has this excellent article on the shenanigans of a group called 'National Initiative for Democracy':

Ohioans for Concealed Carry announces that its President, Jeff Garvas, will appear on the NRA's flagship broadcast, Cam and Company, TONIGHT, at 10:20 PM:

The Volokh Conspiracy alerts us to a new book by Lynne Olsen entitled, 'Troublesome Young Men,' which recounts the story of some courageous Britons who dared oppose the policy of appeasement to Hitler initiated by Chamberlain, which led to his eventual defeat and the ushering in of the great Winston Churchill:

The Bitch Girls present an interesting read on term limits for U.S. Supreme Court justices:

Petraeus, Patriots, Prostitutes, and the Pimp

By all accounts the appearance of General David H. Petraeus before Congress yesterday was nothing less than a three-ring circus. The entire fiasco can be laid directly at the feet of the Democratic leadership who obviously did nothing, or very little, to insure a mature, orderly proceeding.

The embarrassing buffoonery started when Democratic committee chair Ike Skelton refused to listen to GOP warnings about potential disruptions at the hands of pinko anti-war demonstrators.

And disrupt, they did.

But first, we were treated to the highly embarrassing episode of the dead microphones. Neither the General's nor the Ambassador's microphones would work. Perhaps, as one blogger put it, this was perfectly symbolic. The Democrats had no intention of actually listening to the report, since they had already begun attacking it before it was issued.

Once the microphones were working, it was time for the pinkos to protest.

Of course, Rep. Skelton was forced to put on his best 'I am highly offended' face and throw the bums out...but not before they were allowed to heckle General Petraeus and the U.S. Ambassador to Iraq.

Perhaps Mr. Skelton believed that these types of made-for-TV demonstrations would somehow help to show Americans that those awful, despicable, war-mongering symbols of America's shame in Iraq returned to Washington only to face a massive outpouring of spontaneous heckling and hatred.

Why else would he allow them entrance to the committee hearing given that he had already been warned that troublemakers were on the prowl?

Yet, it could well be that Skelton's plot backfired. Petraeus appeared calm, steady, and professional under intense pressure. His character had already been impugned before he was allowed to speak a word, yet the General conducted himself with utmost dignity and steadiness.

Congressional Republicans conducted themselves with dignity, patriotism, and maturity as their colleagues in the other Party threw a tantrum.

It was the Democrats who came off looking like desperate, eager opportunists, searching for everything--anything--they could get their hands on to try to discredit the General and the Ambassador.

In fact, they appeared almost as if they were prostitutes, having sold themselves to individuals and entities that have anything but America's best interests at heart.

For example,, the anti-war organization of the Democratic Party, referred to General Petraeus as 'General Betray-Us.' They even bought a full-page ad in the New York Times to say it.

In the ad Moveon also accused Petraeus of 'cooking the books,' lying about the figures, in order to present a positive picture.

Back down at the funny farm in Congress, Democrat Tom Lantos launched into a lengthy Petraeus-bash prior to the General's report, and stated forthrightly about the General's ensuing words, 'I don't buy a word of it.'

U.S. Representative and Republican Presidential hopeful Duncan Hunter, R-California, responded to the attack by reminding the committee that Petraeus had been confirmed unanimously by Congress earlier this year, and that the proceedings should continue only with the stipulation that all would presume that Petraeus would offer 'a candid, independent assessment with integrity.'

Perhaps Hunter's stipulation was a bit too much for the ethically-challenged members of the Democratic leadership. Having sold themselves to the highest bidder, i.e., the anti-war, pinko nutcases of the extremist leftwing, these prostitutes would now sell the nation's soul to them as well.

At this hour, not a single Democratic candidate for President, nor any Democratic member of Congress has denounced, repudiated, or condemned for its blatant disrespect and character assassination of one of the America's most trusted military officials.

Former Democrat and Independent Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman joined with John McCain in drafting a letter to be sent to the Democratic leadership in the Senate, calling on the Majority Leader to denounce and distance himself and his Party from the ad.

Senator Harry Reid, Senate Majority Leader, refused.

Of course he refused. When you have sold out like a prostitute, you are forever indebted to the pimp. And in this case the pimp is somewhat elusive but encompasses the Democratic National Committee and those it needs to please in order to get the cash.

But what about the patriots? Where did they stand on yesterday's clown show that was not worthy of a hearing for a General?

John McCain stated that this was a McCarthy-like attack on the character of an American patriot.

Indeed, it was.

Fred Thompson accused Moveon of libel, and stated that the Democratic Party and every single Democratic candidate for President should repudiate the libel of this patriotic American.

We agree. And Mr. Thompson himself is a great American patriot as well.

When David H. Petraeus received his unanimous confirmation by the Congress, he also received the pledges from Congressional Democrats to 'give the surge a chance,' and to 'wait until the report is issued in September before passing judgment.'

It is clear after today's fiasco that the Democrats lied. They had no intention of supporting Petraeus or of giving the surge a chance to work, simply because to do so would ruin their most effective 2008 election tool, i.e., claiming that the War in Iraq is a big mistake and no progress is being made.

And the news today which shows a steep decline in the number of deaths and a dramatic increase in safety and security in sectors that once had been nothing more than death-traps, is not good news for those whose political fortune rests on the failure of America.

But of course, the act of selling oneself to the highest bidder is not an exercise in love for country but a race to see who gets the most cash at the end of the day. I am sure that the pimp will be most pleased.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Second Amendment News Roundup for 9/10/07

Focusing on guns and politics, here is today's Second Amendment News Roundup:

A Keyboard and a .45 has a quote of the day that is a MUST-read:

Alphecca blogs on another useless gun law in Ohio:

Alphecca also reports on a lawmaker in Michigan who wants to arm school teachers. Sounds like a great idea to us:

Blogonomicon posts this on Dan McKown, who was injured in the Tacoma Mall shootout:

Cameron Bailey points to three excellent essays, one questioning Mitt Romney's Republican credentials:

Front Sight, Press posts a list of news items of interest to the gun rights community from the website M1922:

Random Ramblings of a Republitarian says that the gun-grabbers are always considering which guns to ban. This may help them out:

John Lott has this interesting point of view from a British citizen who opines on the subject of guns in the U.S.:

Say Uncle posts this on the 'Triangle of Death':

Red's Trading Post shows us why ATF trace request data is questionable:

Sharp as a Marble posts an interesting read entitled, 'Peace and Pistols':

Snow Flakes in Hell has more information on California's microstamping law:

The Bitch Girls post the information on the number of hunters who are members of hunting or conservation organizations:

Nicki at The Liberty Zone opines on when a right ceases to be a right, and I fully agree:

Nicki also asks an excellent question: why not do a background check on members of the Press?:

The War on Guns says that what NYC needs is criminal control, not gun control:

Traction Control reports that Harris County, Texas, is finally making it harder on illegal aliens:

Xavier Thoughts blogs about the Smith & Wesson Model 15, a great revolver:

Take a look at Michelle Malkin's minute-by-minute report on General Petraeus' appearance before Congress, including a ad in the NYT today that blasts the General even before his report was given:

The Buckeye Firearms Association has a late-breaking, timely update on the fallout from the Sandusky Register's publishing of the names of concealed carry gun owners, and the shortfalls of the proposed legislative 'fix':

Gun Owners of America posts an alert on the victory in the Senate of the Vitter bill that restricts the United Nations from using U.S. funds to restrict or tax our right to firearms:

The Volokh Conspiracy shows us how the present Democrat controlled Congress, which said it was dedicated to ethics reform, just passed an 'ethics bill' that actually makes it easier for the Senate to pass pet projects without the public, or other Senators, being aware of it:

Call Reveals Dems' Deep Division Over Iraq

The transcripts of a conference call between key Democrats and anti-war activists reveal deep divisions within the Party over Iraq. Rabbi Michael Lerner of Tikkun Magazine, an anti-war activist, posted the transcripts of the conference call on the website of the Network of Spiritual Progressives, of which he is co-chair.

Each of the Democratic Presidential hopefuls insist they want our troops out of Iraq immediately. Yet each have played a careful game of semantics with issues such as when will the withdrawal of troops begin, how long will it take to get them out, and will the U.S. need to stay in the region indefinitely.

The result has been a hodge-podge of statements and innuendo without providing any substance to the highly emotionally tinged mantra of, 'We want our troops home now!'

Meanwhile, behind the scenes the anti-war stalwarts of the leftwing in the Democratic Party have expressed frustration with 'moderate Democrats' who seem to be holding up the process of an immediate troop withdrawal.

Anti-war activists outside the Party, such as Rabbi Lerner, are much more frustrated.

Hence, the transcripts of the conference call. Rep. Lynn Woolsey, D-California, is quoted in the transcripts as expressing frustration that moderate Democrats across the country are holding back on Iraq because they are certain they will be voted out of office if they come across as 'supporting defeat.'

When one anti-war activist speaks about 'peeling back Republican support for the War,' Woolsey interjects that 'perhaps you should be going after Democrats.'

Woolsey also refers to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's rather low-keyed approach of late toward the War. Woolsey maintains that Pelosi is counting on the leftwing within the Party to push toward withdrawal.

Rabbi Lerner is not impressed, according to Politico's Mike Allen. In an interview with Allen, Lerner stated that the anti-war movement is not at all concerned with 'what may be in Nancy's heart' but whether or not she actively pursues a course of withdrawal of the troops.

Yet Rep. Jim Moran, D-Virginia, defended Pelosi in the conference call, stating that she simply does not have the votes for a complete, immediate pull-out from Iraq. Like Woolsey, Moran expresses frustration with the number of Democrats who are afraid of making waves on the War.

As for Rabbi Lerner, the fact that a Democratic-controlled Congress has not followed through on its promises to end the War is a sore spot among peace activists and anti-war demonstrators. Lerner stated that the present Congress should be labeled, 'Profiles in Cowardice.'

'There is a great sense of frustration with the Democrats in Congress,' said Lerner, 'a sense almost of betrayal.'

Perhaps the most important nugget of wisdom contained in the comments Lerner had to offer is in this statement, 'People in the U.S. are opposed to the war, but they feel that they need to have a picture of what the world will look like if the U.S. were to withdraw from the world by leaving Iraq.'

It would seem that this is precisely the heart of the matter. Nobody likes war. But sometimes circumstances necessitate it. And the key issue is, what would the world look like if the world's only remaining superpower simply withdraws from the world by leaving Iraq?

General David H. Petraeus will present his long-awaited report on the troop surge today. When Petraeus was first appointed by President Bush to take command of the surge, much fanfare ensued in Washington on both sides of the aisle. Even Democrats were saying they had full confidence in Petraeus and were willing to 'give him a chance.'

Now that the first phase of the surge is complete and Petraeus is set to give his assessment to Congress, the question is, what will the Democrats do?

It would seem they have worked themselves into a corner. If they oppose Petraeus, once again they will come off looking like nothing more than second-rate political opportunists, given their resounding support in the Spring. If they support him, they will play into the hands of anti-war activists such as Lerner, who is already referring to the Democratic leadership as a lost cause.

Thus, the War in Iraq will continue to produce deep divisions among the Democrats.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Will Switzerland Be Gobbled Up by EU 'Values'?

Other than having some of the most breathtaking mountain panoramas in the world, the Swiss have been known for centuries for three things, i.e., their neutrality and fierce independence, gun rights, and democratic values that have produced one of the most economically vibrant nations in the world.

While the rest of Western Europe plunged into decline economically, militarily, and politically, Switzerland thrived. This fact was lost on a recent writer of an article that appeared in the U.K.'s 'The Independent,' who claims that Switzerland may be Europe's 'heart of darkness' due to its intent in recent days to do something to stem the tide of a burgeoning immigration problem.

The writer also failed to mention that the rest of Western Europe's failure to deal with this very problem has brought it to the brink of disintegration and chaos at the hands of Islamic extremists.

It would seem clear, then, that Europe's 'heart of darkness' exists not within Switzerland, but within the Houses of Parliament in London, Paris, and Berlin, as well as within the corridors of the EU's Parliament in Brussels.

It would also be a big mistake to fail to mention that while 'enlightened' Europe dealt rather unsuccessfully with Adolf Hitler, Switzerland managed to avoid the stain, the stench, and the statism of totalitarianism.

The Swiss stayed out of WWII not because they did not detest Adolf Hitler and the Nazis but because their accepted policy on national defense forbade an attack on a foreign government unless they were attacked first.

Switzerland was the only nation in that part of Europe that Hitler did not invade. Neither did Stalin from the West.

The reasons most often cited by scholars for Switzerland's escape from attack are two-fold: Switzerland's unfathomably rugged terrain, and the nation's long-standing policy that all adult males belong to the militia for a specified number of years, which mandates that each male keep a government-issued fully-automatic rifle.

If a militiaman is an officer, he is required to be part of the militia 5 years longer than others and must keep a semi-automatic pistol in his home.

Had either Hitler or Stalin attempted to invade Switzerland, the two vast unknown variables would come staring them squarely in the face--navigating the rugged mountains would have proved nearly impossible and deadly, and facing a citizenry where every single male is armed would have surely produced massive bloodshed.

To this day, Switzerland's policy of an armed citizens militia still stands. Yet there are signs of opposition. Globalism, the influence of EU values, and immigration are all taking their toll on traditional Swiss values--values that have kept the nation free from invasion and economically strong.

A recent poll in Switzerland suggests that 2 out of 3 Swiss residents want a change in the nation's policy toward firearms. A 'Green' member of the nation's Federal Assembly wants the guns out of the homes. A proposal has been put forth which mandates that the firearms be kept at various government locations and that gun registration be implemented for private ownership.

As it stands now, no permit is required to buy a gun, although one must obtain a 'carry permit' in order to carry a firearm openly. Some of the nation's cantons--the equivalent of a 'state' in the U.S.--are very liberal in their issuance policies, meaning of course, that government monitoring is kept to a minimum.

Although Switzerland is one of the most heavily armed countries in the free world, the crime rate is very low. Deaths by firearms are amazingly low, most of which are suicides and the occasional murders of family members. Due to the rarity of these firearms deaths, the government does not bother to keep statistical information on such things.

When the country's total population of 6 million is taken into consideration, plus the fact that there are upwards of 3 million firearms owned by the citizens, the number of firearms deaths per year--an estimated 300 at the most--is minuscule.

Switzerland is not a part of the European Union, although many in the nation's younger generation desire closer ties to the EU. Many believe that eventually the Euro will become the nation's currency, although there is strong opposition to such a plan.

The creeping crawl of the EU and globalism is having an impact on the Swiss, no doubt. Under intense pressure from outside sources, Swiss banks have begun to selectively cooperate with foreign authorities in providing data to law enforcement personnel.

Historically this information was kept strictly confidential. However, the Swiss are under intense pressure from the global community to be a 'good neighbor' by cooperating more fully with members of the international community.

The pressure of the international community gives one pause to wonder if Swiss independence will withstand the onslaughts of leftists who wish to change society from top to bottom. Part of the problem has been immigration. Although Switzerland has been able to control its borders admirably, the issue of legal immigration is one of great curiosity.

Upwards of 25 percent of the Swiss workforce is foreign--one of the highest in Europe. With immigrants crowding into the country whose values do not mirror those of the traditional Swiss, the leftists have had natural allies in their attempts to reconstruct Swiss society.

So far Switzerland has been able to fight off the wolves in spite of the fact that they have invaded the hen house.

It is to be noted that the Founding Fathers of the United States government expressed deep admiration for the Swiss ideal of limited government. For centuries the Swiss have managed to keep that ideal intact. The country is known for a very small and limited central government bureaucracy, and the citizens are often called upon to address political concerns through national referenda.

The leftists are presently attempting to use the tools of democracy, such as the referendum, to implement very un-democratic policies, such as the confiscation of firearms.

A pertinent question arises to the forefront as a thorough consideration is given to these weighty matters: if something isn't broke, why fix it? Switzerland's traditional values of independence, democracy, economic prowess, and gun rights have kept the nation safe from aggression, crime, and economic decline.

This is no time to begin changing one of the most admirable societies ever seen in the history of the world.