Saturday, December 27, 2008
It occurred to me that there may be others who wonder the same thing, hence this post.
How does one 'make it' to The Roundup (as if it is some sort of all-encompassing goal of gun bloggers, which I highly doubt)?
Have you ever wondered why some posts are chosen and others are not? Or maybe you wonder why perhaps what you thought was your 'best' post was overlooked but one of your less-than- stellar posts was chosen instead.
These are good questions.
First, I wish to address what The Roundup is not:
1. It is not necessarily a collection of 'the best of the web.' While good writing is normally a requirement, I am not necessarily looking for what is considered the best, particular if such a post has nothing to do with guns, human liberty, or politics.
2. It is not a copy of someone else's news roundup or an attempt to be what someone else has done in the past. The Roundup here on The Liberty Sphere bears my unique personality and interests. It may not be as good as others, or it may be better than others. That is not the issue. While I strive to be the best I can be, the Roundup will be stamped inevitably with my own idiosyncrasies, warts and all.
3. While feedback is appreciated and suggestions will always be considered, the Roundup is not determined by group opinion, that is, the decision as to what gets included is ultimately mine. This is not to say I will not consider posts that are pitched to me. And this is also not to say that new blogs will not be considered. I also consider blogs that may have been around for a long time but which may not have caught my attention as of yet.
4. The Roundup section is not a place for me to censor gun bloggers who may disagree with my opinion on the particulars of the Second Amendment, such as the Prags vs. the Three Percenters debate. The purpose of the Roundup is to present what's going on in the gun blogging community as a whole, and thus, all opinions will be represented at some time or another.
And this leads us to what The Roundup is, from a positive standpoint:
1. The Second Amendment News Roundup is designed to highlight the 2nd amendment to the U.S. Constitution and its ultimate importance to human liberty.
2. The Roundup will also highlight political matters that inevitably impact the exercise of liberty. At times the political posts may not deal directly with the 2nd Amendment but may indirectly impact our ability to exercise the 2nd amendment.
3. The posts that are chosen for the Roundup will normally reflect the overall goal of calling attention to the importance of the 2nd Amendment and the political issues that directly or indirectly impact our ability to exercise it.
4. In order to avoid annoying repetitiveness and redundancy, an issue addressed in an earlier post chosen for the Roundup will not be repeated by another writer's post in the same edition, unless that writer contributes something unique to the discussion of that issue. The exception to the redundancy issue is in the case of a major news story, such as the Heller decision, the result of which I posted 3 dozen posts by bloggers...all on the same issue. In short, there are times when presenting lots of different posts on the same subject is appropriate and times when it is inappropriate.
5. For those times you may have wondered 'why in the world did he pick THAT post!' I can only say that for variety's sake I sometimes make a choice precisely because no one else blogged on that particular issue. There are other times I will post something entirely trivial for comic relief or in order to 'play with' the blogger in question a bit. My sense of humor can sometimes be dry and understated.
6. Some posts beg for my ultimately intelligent, insightful, perceptive, and inherently wise commentary. Ahem. If I launch into lengthy commentary on your post it is not necessarily an indication I agree or disagree but that I, well, like to comment. I am, after all, a blogger. It's what I do.
7. I reserve the right to break my own rules. There are always exceptions to everything. This should not surprise you. It's my blog.
Well, that's about it. Oh, and one other thing--I notice I tend to favor bloggers who link to me. Human nature, I suppose. But even then, this is not always the case. I have linked to lots of blogs that never link to me and probably never will. But if I really like what they post, I will pick it although I don't get anything in return.
I do prefer those who return the favor, however...and that is simply being honest.
Ok, that's about all I need to say on this subject, that is, unless some of you have questions, need clarification, need to rant, or whatever. (Yeah, I know how some of you are). Heh.
Despite the court of world opinion and condemnations by the U.N., most who are sympathetic to the plight of the Jews in the face of Islamic terrorism view the defensive attack by Israel as long overdue.
One of the most asinine and indefensible pieces of propaganda emanating from the mainstream media and leftist politicians around the world is that Israel must simply be the sitting duck as terrorists all around it seek to wipe it from the face of the earth.
Such utterly irrational blather must be dismissed outright as anti-Semitic.
UPDATE: Via Matt Drudge, Reuters News Service is reporting that Hamas has threatened to 'unleash hell' on Israel in response to the attacks on Gaza.
UPDATE 2: Israellycool.com is live-blogging the Israeli attacks on Gaza and the resulting fallout. (H/t to Michelle Malkin).
Let me cut right to the chase here. I never trusted Bill Richardson. His politics were as leftwing as anyone's. OK, so he supported gun rights to a degree. But what good is a socialist with a gun if he supports the basic goals of statism, which always lead to tyranny?
Billy is now being investigated for corruption.
Not only has he been caught in a barefaced lie about his past associations with baseball (it never happened), but apparently he has been selling government business in exchange for campaign contributions.
This crowd is beginning to make Nixon look like an angel. We have not seen this level of potential corruption in any administration since Warren G. Harding in the early 1920s.
And if Obama's visit on Friday to a Marine base in Hawaii is any indication, Obama's popularity among military personnel is still dismal.
The President-elect's appearance at the base was met with silence on the part of our service men and women. This is in stark contrast to the wild cheers and applause that greeted President George W. Bush's many visits to the front lines during his years in office.
Pakistan's Afghan border screams for military oversight as the potential for terrorist movement between Afghanistan and Pakistan remains very high. Washington in particular views the redeployment of Pakistani forces from its Afghan border to its Indian border as a move that vastly weakens the campaign against Al Qaeda and the Taliban.
In addition, the move is a blow to Barack Obama's proposed strategy to focus on Pakistan as ground zero in the attempt to cripple and eradicate terrorist activity flowing between Afghanistan and remote regions of Pakistan.
Tensions between India and Pakistan reached a fever pitch when India announced that it placed the blame for the terrorist massacre at Mumbai squarely on Islamic Pakistani militants.
India's outrage over the terrorist attack is justified and its desire for retaliation understandable. However, as one former general and military analyst put it:
"This is a serious blow to the war on terror in the sense that the whole focus is now shifting toward the eastern border," said Talat Masood, a former general and military analyst. "It will give more leeway to the militants and increased space to operate."
At the same time it is entirely unrealistic to expect India to stand down if it has solid proof that Islamic Pakistani militants are responsible for the attack. It may mean, however, that the strategy to rely on Pakistan in the war to contain Afghan terrorism is misguided and may need to be revised.
Given Pakistan's history of being either unable or unwilling to do what is necessary to sniff out and capture terrorists, including Osama bin Laden, I never viewed the Obama strategy as a realistic one to begin with.
If Pakistan cannot or will not control its own border with Afghanistan, then they are entirely unreliable as front-line allies in the war on terror.
For more on this continually-breaking story, click here.
Friday, December 26, 2008
Gun Rights Examiner posts David Codrea's column for today entitled, 'A Wanted Man and a True Success Story.'
From Codrea's War on Guns:
*They're kicking us while we're down with more taxes.
*About That Virginia Tech Gun Ban
Roberta X shares some interesting thoughts on governments. It's worth reading.
HERE is a follow-up to the story of the JBT raid of a food co-op in Ohio. It seems the directors of the co-op are fighting back. Good!
From Gateway Pundit:
*Christmas was declared a holiday in Iraq for the very first time.
*EU urges Arab gov'ts to allow Christian churches
*Blago's lawyers want Obama aides to testify before House impeachment committee
From Sipsey Street Irregulars:
*We Will Not Disarm--a must-read!
*An excellent review of the movie 'Valkyrie'
*Interesting post on the usefulness of supposedly 'obsolete' weapons
Caroline Glick, Middle East expert and internationally-renown journalist, now has her own TV show on Pajamas Media TV. Take a look for details.
Pax Parabellum has a stunning must-read on Timothy McVeigh and Obama-pal Bill Ayers. So, what's the difference between McVeigh and Ayers? Apparently nothing!
Breda blogs on the many good things that happened all over Iraq during the year.
The Wandering Minstrel says that gun signs can be seen all over Arizona--a stark contrast to California. He also has a photo.
LOL! Texas Fred reports that Sarah Palin has proclaimed the official end of Christmas for 2008, and he has the photo to prove it!
Walls of the City has a fitting tribute to President Bush for those qualities in a human being that are often overlooked.
Days of Our Trailers blogs on 'the gift that keeps on giving'...sort of like herpes.
Conservative Libertarian Outpost says it's time for conservatives to get their revenge on the liberal media, and the Media Research Center has obliged...the 2008 goofiest MSM quotes of the year.
Michelle Malkin provides today's update on the never-ending bailout march.
News you won't find anywhere else. Pamela Geller at Atlas Shrugs presents the whole truth on the Islamic terrorist attack in India. What they did to the Rabbi and his wife is simply barbaric. Warning! Post and pictures not for the faint of heart!
The infamous Chicago mansion supposedly owned by Barack Obama (with the help of corrupt real estate mogul Tony Rezko) is actually owned by Rezko's attorney.
According to records obtained by World Net Daily, the million-dollar mansion in which Obama and his family live is owned by attorney William Miceli of the Chicago law firm Miner, Barnhill, and Galland, which was Obama's former employer.
In addition, the tax bill for the Obama property is mailed to Miceli and not Obama:
WND confirmed the tax bill for the Obama home is mailed to Miceli, not to Obama or the Northern Trust account through which Obama has claimed the home was purchased.
Records from the Cook County Treasurer's Office give the PIN number for the Obama property as 20-11-115-037-0000 and list Miceli as the person who receives Obama's property tax invoice by mail.
Eric Herman, a spokesman for the Cook County assessor, confirmed to WND that the Treasurer's Office records were correct and that Miceli did receive the Obama property tax invoice by mail.
Miceli did not return a call WND placed to him at Miner, Barnhill & Galland
The other piece of intriguing information obtained by WND is that since placing Illinois Governor Rod Blaojevich under investigation for corruption, federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has taken a renewed interest in the connection between Tony Rezko and Barack Obama.
With the exception of failing to note that John McCain is no real conservative, Glick perceptively observes that no conservative candidate for public office can win by alienating his/her Party base.
Such a tactic in all likelihood cost McCain the election, and it threatens to cost Netanyahu his in Israel. The article provides the details.
Such a move would be highly politically motivated and terribly unwise.
Barack Obama has stated that he supports such an investigation--yet another factor that goes to his detriment.
We must remember that the mindset that demands Bush and Cheney be vilified as war criminals is the very same one that believes Harry Truman was a mass murderer for dropping 2 atomic bombs on Japan to end WWII in the Pacific.
Mort Kondracke, who has never been very much of a friend of the Bush administration, has a new article up at Jewish World Review entitled, 'Obama Should Say No to War Crimes Probes of Bush Team.'
It is well worth reading.
Thursday, December 25, 2008
A warm and heartfelt 'Merry Christmas' to all! May your holidays be filled with meaning, peace, and love.
The Christmas Story
'And there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. And all went to be taxed, everyone into his own city.
'And Joseph also went up from Galilee out of the city of Nazareth into Judea, unto the City of David, which is called Bethlehem, to be taxed with Mary, his espoused wife, being great with child.
'And while they were there the days were accomplished that she should be delivered, and she brought forth her first-born Son, wrapped Him in swaddling clothes, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the Inn.
'And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the fields, keeping watch over their flocks by night. And lo, the Angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them, and they were sore afraid.
'And the Angel said, "Fear not, for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
'And this shall be a sign unto you...you shall find the Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger."
'And suddenly there was with the Angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the Highest, and on earth, peace, goodwill toward men."
'And when the Angel was gone away from them into Heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let us now go even unto Bethlehem and see this thing which has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us."
'And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger.'
'And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
'But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.
'And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, as it was told to them.'
(from the Gospel of Luke 2: 1-20)
CHRIST IS BORN (Words and Music by Father Domenico Bartolucci and Ray Charles)
Recorded by Perry Como
It is "He", Christ who is born today
See Him crying in the manger
King of Heaven
Son of God
There He lies
there with the lam’kin
Only swaddle for his garment
With his Holy Mother Mary
Glory, Glory, Almighty God!
And on Earth,
Peace to All Men
Hear the joyful angels singing
He is born,
let us adore Him
Christ the Lord
King of Kings
Prince of Peace
for All the Universe
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
It would seem there is not much to celebrate this Christmas.
Yet my mind turns to signs of hope. On the eve of the designated day on which Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, I am reminded anew of the eternal hope that springs from the One who placed the desire and the fight for liberty in the souls of human beings.
Jesus said, 'If the Son makes you free, you are free indeed!'
The birth of that Baby in the manger so long ago represented all the hopes and aspirations of generations of persons. Even today, those who claim His name are reminded incessantly that hope does, indeed, spring eternal. As the Star of Bethlehem guided the Magi to the place where lay the Prince of Peace, so today we are reminded that among the ashes of failure, strife, violence, and despots, there is the hope of freedom.
Liberty begins in the human heart through faith. From there the desire for liberty spreads to every aspect of life.
The men who penned the Declaration of Independence, devised the Constitution, and ratified 10 initial amendments that guaranteed certain individual, unalienable rights, believed that liberty as a concept was infused into the human psyche by the Creator. Such a notion has radical, broad-sweeping ramifications. No government, no tyrant, no despot, no group of persons who have set themselves up as the rulers over humanity, have any inherent right to squelch liberty. As soon as they do so, they go against the very nature of what it means to be human, and their actions are immediately illegitimate.
This was Thomas Jefferson's stunning philosophy.
Any government that attempts to remove the inherent liberties endowed to us by the Creator is to be viewed as illegitimate, tyrannical, and possessing of no authority. The very act of stripping citizens of their rights automatically negates the viability and legitimacy of that government.
And that goes for governments that are elected by the people.
Jefferson referred to tyrants who are voted into office by the people as 'elective despotism.' His view of the sweep of history was that the tendency is for government to increase power and gradually remove the rights of the people. This, according to Jefferson, would lead to war, and rightfully so. As Jefferson states, 'Liberty must occasionally be salvaged by the blood of tyrants and patriots.'
The desire to be free is an overwhelming human drive. The students in Tienanmen Square in Red China are a perfect case in point. Defying an overwhelmingly powerful Red Army, these courageous young men and woman stood in front of tanks and artillery, placing their lives in mortal danger for facing down a tyrannical government.
Freedom fighters all over the world have done the same thing.
Thus, on this Christmas Eve, my friends, I am far from despair. I am filled with hope. As the Son has made us free, so we push for, work for, long for, fight for, liberty, not only for us but for the entire world.
Friends, this is crucial reading. Here is an excerpt to whet your interest:
For what have we to show for our seven plus decades of increasingly tighter gun laws? Have they limited criminal behavior? No, gun laws by definition are only aimed at the law abiding. Criminals will do what they will. It has recently become popular for criminals to steal AR-15 patrol rifles from police cars. In what way would banning civilians from owning AR-15s prevent that? And if the street gangs are armed with such weapons, why should honest folks be debarred from the same weapons to defend themselves against the gangs?
Understand this, you can pass any "law" you like but we will not obey them. Then you must reconcile yourselves to come to our homes and seize them from us. And sometime after the first few of us die in your confiscatory raids, you will discover another truth taught by history. Read the story of the Deacons for Defense and Justice during the 60s. They would be the first to spit on your proposals. For those black veterans who took up arms against the Klan understood that just because a government was "elected" didn't mean it was fair, or legitimate.
Do yourself a favor and read the entire thing.
Gateway Pundit reports the ominous news that a veteran has been arrested for placing a Bible and a Cross on the altar in the chapel of a VA facility.
Glenn Reynolds has the Op-Ed the New York Times refused to run. The fact that they wouldn't run this particular piece speaks volumes.
The American Thinker provides an excellent read on the shoe throwing incident while President Bush was in Iraq. And it is a serious analysis of the present vs. the past under Saddam.
Human Events details the real reason the Democrats don't want a special election in Illinois to fill Obama's vacant Senate seat...and it's NOT because 'we don't have the money.'
Codrea's War on Guns has a must-read on the curious disparity between sentences for 'gun law violations.'
Gun Rights Examiner posts Codrea's Christmas eve article entitled, 'Who Will Guard the Guards?'
It looks like Mike McCarville will be 'hittin' the road' during the Christmas season in Santa's new sleigh. Have a great time, buddy!
Ahab recaps last night's edition of Gun Nuts Radio (audio included).
Alphecca blogs on a NJ man who regained his civil rights. Good!
Ride Fast and Shoot Straight comments on the long-overdue pardon of a man who helped the Jews as they fought to establish their own state in the Middle East.
Traction Control reminds President Bush that he forgot about 2 important men who did not receive pardons.
Nicki has some well-chosen words to the wise for bloggers. This is a MUST-read for ALL who would delve into the world of the blogosphere.
Sebastian points to NICS data for the entire year of 2008--up to October.
Robb Allen is feeling better and has 'Notes from the Front Line.'
Uncle provides interesting reading entitled, 'Little Discussed Gun Laws.'
This man is a man after my own heart. Take a look at his 'conservative identity.'
Mindful Musings has a most appropriate holiday message. Take a look!
It is no coincidence that the report was released at just the right time for it to receive minimal attention from the American public and little reaction from politicians.
Under normal conditions this would be a major indication that something was in the report that is embarrassing and/or damaging to Obama and company.
As it turns out there are numerous potential landmines in the report that could spell deep trouble ahead for the President-elect, although the report claims that no inappropriate contact took place.
We must remember that this was an internal review conducted by the Obama team's legal counsel. The report is not an official investigative analysis conducted by the federal prosecutor.
Thus, in essence, the report is nothing more than the Obama team exonerating itself.
Yet the report had to contain enough factual information that can be corroborated by the federal prosecutor so as not to appear too eager to claim innocence in the midst of enormous guilt and so as not to lead to charges of perjury.
And there are plenty of nuggets of truth in the report to suggest that something is terribly amiss within the Obama camp.
...Obama and several aids were interviewed by the federal prosecutor concerning possible connections between the Obama camp and the scandal involving Rod Blagojevich...
...Obama claimed that he had no contact at all with Blago concerning his vacant Senate seat, and in fact stated that he would take a 'hands off' approach to his replacement in the Senate. Yet the report admits that Obama authorized Rahm Emanuel to suggest the names of his preferred replacements to Blago and/or his staff...
...Federal prosecutors played for Emanuel a segment of their surveillance tapes of conversations between Emanuel and Blagojevich, suggesting that the Feds needed to remind Emanuel that they had significant evidence...
...Although the report states that Emanuel had 'one or two' conservations with Blago and 4 more conversations with Blago's aids, earlier reports from the Feds suggest that Emanuel actually had 21 separate conservations with Blago and his staff.
The transcripts of those taped conversations have not been made public, nor do we know for sure if they will ever be. It would be assumed that once a formal indictment is issued against Blagojevich the transcripts of the tapes could then be made available.
But once again it has become abundantly clear that until we see the full transcripts of the tapes and are made aware of all of the evidence the federal prosecutor has amassed, we are no closer to finding out the real truth than we were prior to the release of the report.
In fact, each time the Obama team issues a report or makes comments about the entire matter, we are left with nothing but more questions.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
An internal review prepared for President-elect Barack Obama says his incoming chief of staff had multiple conversations with Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich's office, but no one close to Obama suspected that the governor might be trying to sell Obama's Senate seat as prosecutors allege.
The report on inappropriate contacts between the Obama camp and the office of corrupt Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich has finally been released this afternoon at 4:30 PM ET.
Within the report prepared for Obama is an admission that Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel had multiple contacts with Blagojevich.
Fox News provides the details.
UPDATE: At first glance the report appears to contradict what the Obama camp and VP Joe Biden have been saying as late as this morning, that at the most Rahm Emanuel may have had one conversation with Blago, but not concerning the vacant Senate seat.
The Feds still have not released the content of surveillance tapes of some 21 different conversations Rahm had with Blagojevich.
UPDATE 2: The Washington Times has released its story on the report. More contradictory statements to the effect that Obama had no contact with the Governor at all and that Emanuel spoke with Blago only 3 or 4 times, including calls to Blago's staff. Still more questions raised concerning earlier reports from the Feds.
UPDATE 3: Fox News contributor Mary Katharine Ham provides insightful commentary at The Weekly Standard.
UPDATE 4: The report says that Obama authorized Rahm Emanuel to pass along to Governor Rod Blagojevich the names of persons Obama preferred for his vacant Senate seat. So, where the heck is Obama's supposed 'hands off' approach to filling the vacant seat???
Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit reports that it's Merry Christmas time at the Chris Dodd household. Never in memory has Christmas been of such overwhelming importance to the Senator. But this year he was asked a question about his cozy, under-the-table mortgage deal with the corrupt Countrywide Mortgage company. Christmas sure did come in handy.
Paul Davis at Reproach of Men passes along this interesting news item from Afghanistan concerning the resurgence of the Taliban.
From Western Rifle Shooters Association:
*A MUST-read letter to the federal government--Americans are losing faith in their government!
Gun Owners of America reminds us that the David Olofson family is in desperate need of our help, especially during the holidays. Take a look, and act as you feel you can.
Walls of the City informs us of a special program called 'Heroes at Home' that benefits the families of military personnel who have to be away at Christmastime.
Days of Our Trailers has a holiday message. Merry Christmas, Third!
The Rustmeister found some new information on General Patton that should be of great interest to history fans.
Bloviating Zeppelin has the absolute MUST-read of the MONTH, entitled, 'Fomenting Civil War.' The writer is convinced that if government continues on its present path, there will be violence in the streets on the part of ordinary citizens. Read it all!
ROFL! An Ol' Broad's Ramblings has today's edition of 'Obamarama.' Do yourselves a favor and take a look for a good laugh. These are great political cartoons.
Tam blogs on that segment of gunnies that is into 'the big boomer' handguns. An interesting read!
From Codrea's War on Guns:
*An update on the move to block the Holder nomination
*Gangs, Homegrown Terrorists, and Three Percenters
Gun Rights Examiner has Codrea's column for today entitled, 'Violence is No Game.'
From Sebastian's Snow Flakes in Hell:
*Wrong About Palin
*Malfunctions with a Bersa Thunder .380
Mindful Musings reports that Remington is being blasted over its connections to H-S Precision. Read it!
Sipsy Street Irregulars points to a story about a team of Santa's helpers that sabotaged the surveillance state.
Uncle says that a San Antonio newspaper is advocating ammo sales restrictions.
Breda provides all the info on a special holiday edition of Gun Nuts Radio tonight.
John Jacob H has an interesting and creative post entitled, 'Trees are Evil, They Deserve To Die.'
Mike McCarville reports the news of a homeowner in Tulsa who won a gun battle with a burglar. Good!
Alphecca finds some more good reasons to blast the New York Times. I agree. The rag needs to be put to rest.
Blogstitution presents several MORE reasons to blast the Times. No wonder they are going bankrupt!
Speaking of Eric Holder, Obama's nominee for Attorney-General, Syd reports that it was Holder who removed a federal prosecutor from the Waco case because he questioned the actions of the ATF, the FBI, and the Clinton Administration to cover-up what really happened.
Pax Parabellum asks and answers the question, 'Who Needs a Gun in a National Park?'
Gun Pundit blogs on gun control and confiscation on military bases, this time at the Marine Air Station in Beaufort, South Carolina.
Blogonomicon posts a VERY interesting quote from Mark Twain on free speech.
Alert! Late-Breaking News from Fox on the Blago-Scandal:
*U.S. Attorney tells Illinois to back off probe into Blagojevich
*Biden Claims Report will show No Inappropriate Contact
Rather reported that as he neared his Manhattan home, a man approached him and asked, 'Kenneth, what's the frequency?,' upon which the man proceeded to beat Rather to a pulp.
The CBS anchorman sustained some minor injuries from the encounter, as I recall.
The Barack Obama team has been sitting on a special report into alleged improper contacts between the Obama camp and the beleaguered Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.
Supposedly at the request of the U.S. Justice Department, the Obama team has delayed the release of the report until just prior to Christmas--at the very time when Obama himself is out of Washington on holiday in Hawaii and the D.C. political establishment has vacated the premises for Christmas.
It is widely expected that the report, scheduled for release today, will receive the Obama spin, claiming no improper contact between the 2 camps. But the devil will be in the details.
The Wall Street Journal speculates that the report will raise more questions than it answers, sending reporters scattering off to chase down dozens of tangents.
In the end, however, someone is gonna get slammed.
At present my tendency is to believe that Rahm Emanuel will be thrown under the bus when this entire mess is finally unraveled.
It is entirely unrealistic to believe that Obama's staff had no contact with Blagojevich's office concerning Obama's vacated Senate seat, which Blago had placed for sale to the highest bidder. These are all Chicago political establishment pros. And we all know the scoop on the nature of the Chicago political machine.
Obama is not about to take any responsibility for any improper contact with Blago as the Governor faces an uphill battle in the corruption probe that surrounds him.
Thus, the next logical choice is Rahm Emanuel, Obama's chief of staff and Chicago political insider.
Whether Rahm realizes it or not, he may be very very close to being politically pulverized. The next voice he hears may well be, 'Hey, bub, what's the frequency?'
Franken projected to win by 78 votes despite the initial election results showing that Coleman won by 725 votes.
When Italy nationalized banks in 1933, “the architects who designed the system envisaged it as temporary,” she says. “It was in place until the end of the 1990s.” More recently, the Japanese government injected capital into banks to get them to lend to big corporations, keeping alive “the zombie companies that economists talk about,” she says.
Even as Hank Paulson, Barack Obama, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, and President Bush assure the public that the trend toward government control of business is 'temporary,' the lesson from history shows the opposite.
An article at Bloomberg entitled, 'Saving Capitalism is No Sure Thing as Statism Undermines the Economy,' presents a sobering, clear-headed perspective on the current trend against free markets in favor of socialistic concepts that form the core of centralized government control.
The problem is that history proves that such government interventionism does nothing to prevent economic distress but prolongs it.
The other lesson from history is that once governments gain such control over free enterprise they are very reluctant to relinquish that control.
Monday, December 22, 2008
Western Rifle Shooters Association has the infamous quote of the day directly from the mouth of our Fuhrer-elect.
From Codrea's War on Guns:
*The Wayne Fincher Case has been submitted to the Supreme Court.
*Who possesses the moral authority to 'grant' permission to self-defense?
Gun Rights Examiner posts Codrea's column for today that examines 2 cases where guns were prohibited at malls.
Sipsy Street Irregulars says it's time to put all our efforts into blocking Eric Holder's appointment as Attorney-General.
21 Guns Salute has a brief but informative roundup of some events in the news of late.
2A Musing reports more limits to our freedoms, courtesy of our 'progressive' friends.
JR wishes a Happy Chanukah to all of our Jewish friends, and points to a site that explains the background of the Jewish holiday for the Gentiles who may not understand.
Tam muses that self-defense does not make one a vigilante and offers a case that illustrates the point...along with some words to the wise about what NOT to do.
Xavier Thoughts revisits Jeanne Asam one year after she saved hundreds of lives at a church in Colorado.
Say Uncle says that now the mantra is that 'buying a gun makes you a racist.'
Sebastian has some very important gun rights news regarding the campaign for Chair of the GOP.
Nicki's title to this post on Congress says it all--'Aren't You Glad You Gave Them All That Money?' I would add that on top of the travesty Nicki points out, the scumbags went and gave themselves a pay raise in the middle of a recession!
Speaking of the reprehensible Congressional payraise, Insight on Freedom provides a good read on the subject.
Breda writes about VP Dick Cheney today. Say what you will about the man, but he is principled, consistent, and doesn't back down.
Mike McCarville reports that the unbridled proliferation of casinos has had the negative effect of producing problem gamblers.
Blogonomicon requests some help with the subject of reloading for a newbie.
Armed Citizen posts an excellent article by Ann Coulter on election tampering.
Free in Idaho provides good reading entitled, 'Shooting, Hitting, Stopping.'
Syd provides some timeless words from former Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas.
Pax Parabellum reports late-breaking news on the Obama-Blagojevich fundraiser. The stench keeps spreading...
The Wandering Minstrel has a head-shot from target practice.
Days of Our Trailers says that apparently the VPC is running out of scary names with which to demonize guns.
Texas Fred provides an informative update on the Texas Gun Owners Association. Give it a look!
Conservative Libertarian Outpost aptly reminds us that the DEA's 'War on Drugs' actually perpetuates criminal activity, drug lords, etc. I have always supported the de-criminalization of drugs as a means to de-fang the drug lords and create empty space in prisons for the dangerous criminals.
Gateway Pundit has today's news on the conviction of the 'Fort Dix Six' for plotting to murder American soldiers. 5 of the 6 Muslims were actually convicted, though. The first of the 6 was convicted back in April.
Michelle Malkin posts the complete story, including the documents, of the flap concerning Obama's website, 'Change.gov.'
We can 'take him at his word,' after all. Such things are 'no big deal' because he told us so. We can 'trust him.'
Would this be like John McCain could trust Obama when he told McCain in private, and in public at a news conference, that he would accept public funding for his campaign if McCain would, only to 'change his mind' once it was clear his campaign contributions would fall far outside the limits imposed on campaigns once they accept public funds?
The only problem was that McCain had gone ahead and accepted the limitations of public funding, believing in good faith that Obama would 'keep his word.'
I knew that the 'bait and switch' tactic was as old as the hills, but I never remember thinking of it as 'nuanced.'
And then there is the time that Obama stated before a Jewish audience that he believes there should be 'a united Jerusalem under Israeli control.'
In less that a week he was telling a different audience that he supported the goals of a Palestinian state, which of course, includes that little issue of dividing Jerusalem.
It is no small matter that since the campaign ended Obama has sharpened his rhetoric to indicate he would support rolling back Israel's borders to the pre-1968 lines.
More 'nuance,' of course.
Is it any wonder, then, that the nation's gunowners, which are estimated to be somewhere in the neighborhood of 80 million citizens, are not comforted by Obama's words on gun rights when he says, 'I think that people can take me at my word'?
So what, then, did he say about guns? He said that he supports an individual right to own guns but that states and local entities can place restrictions on those rights.
This nuance business is starting to give me a headache.
So, let's break it down. Obama's actions, not his words, are to be trusted. That is, we can trust him to be rather consistent with his past behavior as a Senator and as an Illinois legislator.
And his record on gun rights is dismal. We all know the gist of it by now: his opposition to allow homeowners to use non-registered firearms to defend their lives and property in a home invasion, his push for gun bans as a legislator and as a Senator, his long-held belief that all handguns should be banned, etc., etc.
Thus, Obama at some nebulous, undefinable level in his own mind may actually support gun rights, but in practice he has consistently come down on the side of restriction, control, limits to access, and confiscation.
And there is absolutely no 'nuance' about that.
Read more on this subject at The American Thinker.
Blago, on the other hand, claims through his aids that he regularly took calls from Emanuel.
Looks like a clear case of he said, he said.
Except for one small consideration.
They said, that is, the FBI, that surveillance tapes reveal at least 21 conversations between the 2 concerning the vacant Senate seat and other political matters.
If these tapes do, in fact, exist, then perhaps the only thing that will matter is the content of the tapes. This will determine if a clear connection can be established between Blago's attempt to sell the Senate seat and the Obama team.
Both have been under fire, Obama for inviting an anti-abortion, anti-gay marriage evangelical to give the invocation, and Warren for accepting the invitation from a rabidly pro-abortion and pro-gay rights President-elect.
As for Obama, the choice was one of political expedience and payback. Warren in all likelihood delivered some evangelical votes for Obama that otherwise would have gone to McCain.
But Warren's involvement in the entire Obama-mania is much more complicated and problematic.
Obviously the Baptist Pastor believes that Christians share with Obama a fairly liberal social agenda that places government programs at the center of dealing with poverty, AIDS, and hunger.
He is absolutely, positively 100% wrong.
I know something about Warren's history. His self-admitted mentor in the faith is the late Dr. W.A. Criswell, PhD., former Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas, Texas, one of the first mega-churches in the nation.
Criswell would turn over in his grave if he knew Warren was collaborating with liberals such as Obama and Hillary Clinton. He would also sharply disagree with Warren that Christianity in any way teaches government intervention in matters that should be left to individual initiative.
As a Baptist I feel free to say this. Rick Warren is an embarrassment to Baptists. His views on government social programs are entirely antithetical to everything I believe as a Christian.
Frankly, when a Christian minister is forced to 'explain his actions' and 'defend himself' to a vast segment of the faithful, I take that as a pretty good indicator that the minister in question has taken the wrong path, although there are certainly exceptions to that.
I hope Pastor Warren has lots of fun up there at the Socialist-fest in Washington on January 20. I, for one, won't be watching.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Rod Blagojevich. Rahm Emanuel. William Jefferson. Tony Rezko. Eliot Spitzer. Chris Dodd. Charles Rangel.
There are many more I could drop, but I will stop there because these are the most noteworthy.
Do you notice anything in common about these individuals other than they are involved in politics in some way and they each have been implicated in serious corruption schemes?
If you answered that each are Democrats you would be correct. But you wouldn't know it by watching or listening to the mainstream media. The MSM has perpetrated a self-imposed conspiracy of silence concerning the Party affiliation of any corrupt politician who is engaged in scandal who also happens to be a Democrat.
Funny that a mere 2 years ago this very same media, with the very same personalities reporting the news, constantly referred to a Republican 'culture of corruption' when speaking about Larry Craig and Mark Foley.
Funny also that the major Republican scandals that year involved sex and not the far more serious issues of selling Senate seats, squandering taxpayers' money, or making illegal, under-the-table deals with mortgage brokers.
But now that it is the Democrats' turn to take the heat on corruption issues far more serious than someone's sexual indiscretions, the mainstream media suddenly play dumb at the very least and at the very worst contend that it is 'no big deal,' as PBS' Jim Lehrer actually had the gall to say about the Blagojevich scandal.
No story in the news today depicts any more clearly the glaring bias of the media when it comes to reporting political corruption. If a Republican goes bad, it is front-page news that he/she is a Republican and that the Party is up to its neck in a 'culture of corruption.' But when a Democrat goes bad, you are lucky to discover the person's Party affiliation without doing some digging.
An essay at Newsbusters entitled 'What About the Democrats' Culture of Corruption?' fills in all the details of this travesty of journalism in our time.
The sotto voce announcement that Congress, after wagging their collective head over executive pay and perks, decided to vote itself a $2.5 million raise was a depressing portent. “With economy in shambles,” read a headline in The Hill, “Congress gets a raise.”
Congress is controlled by the Democrats, the very ones who have been lambasting corporate CEOs for extremely large paychecks. Yet the Congressional hypocrites give themselves a payraise right in the middle of the biggest economic meltdown since Jimmy Carter in the late 1970s.
This is unacceptable by anyone's estimation, my friends. Read the rest of the story HERE at Pax Parabellum.
Here is love, vast as the ocean,
Lovingkindness as the flood,
When the Prince of Life, our Ransom,
Shed for us His precious blood.
Who His love will not remember?
Who can cease to sing His praise?
He can never be forgotten,
Throughout Heav’n’s eternal days.
On the mount of crucifixion,
Fountains opened deep and wide;
Through the floodgates of God’s mercy
Flowed a vast and gracious tide.
Grace and love, like mighty rivers,
Poured incessant from above,
And Heav’n’s peace and perfect justice
Kissed a guilty world in love.
Let me all Thy love accepting,
Love Thee, ever all my days;
Let me seek Thy kingdom only
And my life be to Thy praise;
Thou alone shalt be my glory,
Nothing in the world I see.
Thou hast cleansed and sanctified me,
Thou Thyself hast set me free.
In Thy truth Thou dost direct me
By Thy Spirit through Thy Word;
And Thy grace my need is meeting,
As I trust in Thee, my Lord.
Of Thy fullness Thou art pouring
Thy great love and power on me,
Without measure, full and boundless,
Drawing out my heart to Thee.
The words posted above are the lyrics to an old Welsh hymn, and, being of Welsh descent, I immediately took to it as a beautiful expression of the Christian faith from a Welsh perspective. The full context can be found HERE.
(H/t to Paul Davis).