At the close of the Constitutional Convention in 1787, Dr. James McHenry, a Maryland delegate, followed Benjamin Franklin from Independence Hall. He recorded a question asked by a lady, directed at Dr. Franklin.

The lady asked, "Well Doctor, what have we got? A republic or a monarchy?"

"A republic," replied Dr. Franklin, "if you can keep it."

IN DEFENSE OF MINORITIES!

"The smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities." - Ayn Rand

Monday, January 31, 2011

Tales from the Eurabian Nights

Science Fiction usually paints a bleak picture of the future by seizing on present events and extrapolating the impact of this or that variable. The transformation of Europe into Eurabia isn't part of a SciFi scenario. It's real, it's here and it's something we need to consider. “The Future of the Global Muslim Population”, produced by the Pew Research Centre, a non-profit outfit based in Washington, DC, predicts that Muslim numbers will soar from 1.6 billion in 2010 to 2.2 billion by 2030. In other words, from 23.4% to 26.4% of the global total. (The Economist)

The authors call their calculations demographic, not political. Drawing on earlier Pew research, they say conversion is not a big factor in the global contest between Islam, Christianity and other faiths; the converts balance out. Nor do they assess piety; via the imperfect data of the United Nations, the European Union and national statistics, they aim simply to measure how many people call themselves Muslim, at least culturally, if asked. (EU Times)


The total Muslim share of Europe’s population is predicted to grow from 6% now to 8% in 2030: hardly the stuff of nightmares. But amid that are some sharp rises. The report assumes Britain has 2.9m Muslims now (far higher than the usual estimates, which suggest 2.4m at most), rising to 5.6m by 2030. As poor migrants start families in Spain and Italy, numbers there will rocket; in France and Germany, where some Muslims are middle-class, rises will be more modest—though from a higher base. Russia’s Muslims will increase to 14.4% or 18.6m, up from 11.7% now (partly because non-Muslims are declining). The report takes a cautious baseline of 2.6m American Muslims in 2010, but predicts the number will surge by 2030 to 6.2m, or 1.7% of the population—about the same size as Jews or Episcopalians. In Canada the Muslim share will surge from 2.8% to 6.6%. (The Economist, op cit)

Make of it what you will.


Sunday, January 30, 2011

Birthdays

Let's face it, we all grow older -- and as birthdays come and go they are marked by rites of passage. High school graduation, that college degree, military service, a wedding day and the birth of that first child all stand as other hallmarks -- but the birthdays keep coming, until they don't.

In most of the world, birthdays are times for joy. My grandson turned two and we're celebrating today. This is a photo of Griffin and his father, taken yesterday:


Today the family is gathering to eat a massive meal, followed by cake, candles, balloons and presents. The birthday of one is a time of joy for all...and everyone has their turn - in turn as pages are torn from the calendar.

There are other parts of the world where a birthday means that you're getting old enough to blow yourself to pieces to honor a faith that remains in the Bronze Age and resists any attempt to move beyond the bigotry, hatred and cruelty of the past.

Here a mother dresses her child for self-extermination as a rite of passage.

Fundamentalist Islam remains a threat to the planet and it doesn't take much study or soul searching to arrive at that conclusion.  The battle rages and it's not simply a geographic thing or a racial thing. There is a fundamental difference between Islam and everyone else and it is chilling - and stark in its reality.

Obama's attachment to Islam disturbs me not because it's another religion - but because it is political and dangerous.  Think about it. And ask yourself what is in America's best interests.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

True or False?

Statement of Fact: The City of Detroit has declared itself a failed city and is now providing traditional city services to only about 70% of the incorporated area.


True or False

Detroit's problem is too few unionized autoworkers! Labor unions need to build a more powerful base in Detroit in order to turn the city's problems around.

_____


Statement of Fact: For generations, CBS, ABC and NBC anchors had the respect of the American people and enjoyed credibility because they worked hard to report the news and not 'make' the news.

True or False

Americans no longer count on their news to be filtered and shaped by the Associated Press or the New York Times. Other outlets including the Internet, cable news, talk radio and other social media including Twitter, etc. Now have more credibility than the mainstream media.

_____

Statement of Fact: With the tough reality of the 'new world economy', the youth need to be prepared to fact a set of circumstances that their parents didn't have to.

True or False

Universities offering 'therapeutic' college curricula and hyphenated 'race-based' studies courses serve the interests of students who will be entering a workforce where competition for jobs will be far fiercer than anything Americans have experienced in the last hundred years.
_____

Statement of Fact: Our neighbor Mexico is failed narco-state, bearing a greater resemblance to Afghanistan than to the US and Canada which share North America with it.

True or False

The traditional media, radical tenured professors teaching racial studies, Democratic Party functionaries, rigid ethnic and racial lobbies, unions, and open-borders advocates are correct in their assertion that blocking illegal immigration, which brings with it organized crime, narcoterrorism and an unsustainably wicked financial burden, is a function of a radical racist element in society (the Tea Party).

_____

Statement of Fact: Unemployment in the US has reached near 10% nationwide. In areas of the country, unemployment and underemployment account for roughly 22% of the population (as in California). The US faces an increasing deficit that could completely consume the nation within a generation.

True or False

President Obama's program of 'spread the wealth' and extending unemployment benefits and unbounded medical entitlements will solve the problem and turn the nation around. We should look to the government to solve our employment woes.


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Muslim Doll

This new toy hit the shops - a talking Muslim doll.

Nobody knows what the she says because nobody has the guts to pull the string.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

A BIG eye in the sky

The Global Observer

The Global Observer, made by Monrovia, Calif.-based AeroVironment Inc., is bigger than a 767, flies in the stratosphere up to 65,000 feet, twice as high as Mount Everest - out of sight and out of range of most anti-aircraft missiles. From there it will be able to see 600 miles in every direction, enough to cover the entire country of Afghanistan.

It is powered entirely by liquid hydrogen fuel - light enough to power the drone for a week at a time, far longer than anything in use today. "It uses hydrogen for fuel, which has three times the energy density of gasoline, which enables it to fly much longer and at much lower costs and - oh, by the way, has zero emissions," AeroVironment CEO Tim Conver told ABC News.

The aircraft weighs about as much as a large SUV, but in order for it to fly so high for so long, the wing span has to be enormous - about half a football field. That way even when you can't see it, it can see you.

"It turns into a guided missile," AeroVironment's Steve Gitlin said, "and it'll follow the target if the target moves."

The new drone takes that unmanned capability much further, doing the work of a satellite for just tens of millions of dollars - some analysts say it would cost about $30 million - compared with hundreds of millions to $1 billion for a satellite. Unlike satellites, it can be up within hours and has the ability to instantly reposition.

The plane orbits above a target for a week at a time. In addition to on-board cameras that offer an unblinking eye, communications equipment offers cell phone, TV and broadband Internet for the same area.

When it refuels, a second plane takes its place. The military would swap out the plane every week, so it has constant surveillance.

It has an interchangeable payload that can carry cameras or communications equipment. The company initially envisioned it as a cheap way to supply broadband Internet, television and phone service cheaply in the Third World.

It has the potential for a more controversial use: border patrol. "Certainly if one wanted to see what was going on their border, looking at a 600-mile swath or area from one point would be a good way to do that," Conver said. [Hendren/ABCNews/24January2011]


Saturday, January 22, 2011

Creating the Perfect World

Keying on a post by Opus#6, it's time to consider the plight of progressives - as best expressed by Diversity Lane, a cartoon series:

How can eternally angry lesbian intellectuals and under actualized ACLU attorneys cope in a world that seems to be dominated by references to God, the US Military, and outmoded relics of a dimmer day in America -- like the Constitution?






XXX

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Choosing Life

(H/T Dale)

Making the decision to snatch life away shouldn't be easy. It shouldn't be comfortable. It shouldn't be unilateral -- but it is.


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

No Limit

When it was instituted over 70 years ago, the statutory debt limit was intended to control congressional spending by limiting the amount of debt that the federal government could accumulate. 

It has not fulfilled its legislative purpose. In the last ten years, Congresshas increased the debt limit ten times, raising the limit twice annually in 2008 and 2009. This data provides evidence that the debt limit, far from providing its intended fiscal discipline, has recently served as a symbolic cap that Congress will simply push higher and higher as spending increases dictate.

Any addict will tell you that they can't be cured so long as the fix is readily available and easily managed. Race for Justice has an interesting take on the situation in Illinois where debt is treated cordially, like an old, dear friend.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

A Commentary on Mismanagement

Why do the best US Army officers leave the service?



As a former Naval officer, I can tell you that it's the same in the Navy and Marine Corps...

From an article in THE ATLANTIC [LINK HERE]
(Quote from the Article) Why is the military so bad at retaining these people? It’s convenient to believe that top officers simply have more- lucrative opportunities in the private sector, and that their departures are inevitable. But the reason overwhelmingly cited by veterans and active-duty officers alike is that the military personnel system—every aspect of it—is nearly blind to merit. Performance evaluations emphasize a zero-defect mentality, meaning that risk-avoidance trickles down the chain of command. Promotions can be anticipated almost to the day— regardless of an officer’s competence—so that there is essentially no difference in rank among officers the same age, even after 15 years of service. Job assignments are managed by a faceless, centralized bureaucracy that keeps everyone guessing where they might be shipped next.
The present system ensures that the services retain the most risk-averse, and leads to long-term mediocrity. The military service follows the track of the country where it's politically incorrect to single out greatness or to mediocrity. The rewards come to those who go along to get along and the outstanding men and women in the armed services who dare to win and take calculated risks are often repudiated.
(Quote from the Article) But the Pentagon doesn’t always reward its innovators. Usually, rebels in uniform suffer at the expense of their ideas. General (Billy) Mitchell was court-martialed for insubordination in 1925; and who can forget the hostile treatment afforded General Eric Shinseki in 2003 after he testified that “something on the order of several hundred thousand soldiers” would probably be required to stabilize post-invasion Iraq?
In a 2007 essay in the Armed Forces Journal, Lieutenant Colonel Paul Yingling offered a compelling explanation for this risk-averse tendency. A veteran of three tours in Iraq, Yingling articulated a common frustration among the troops: that a failure of generalship was losing the war. His critique focused not on failures of strategy but on the failures of the general-officer corps making the strategy, and of the anti-entrepreneurial career ladder that produced them: “It is unreasonable to expect that an officer who spends 25 years conforming to institutional expectations will emerge as an innovator in his late forties.” 
One of the most strident indictments of General Billy Mitchell was his preposterous prediction in 1925 that the Empire of Japan would attack the US Naval Base at Pearl Harbor with aircraft.  Can you imagine any Army officer being that politically incorrect? That sort of thing needs to be punished...


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Graphic Commentary

click to enlarge
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