Scott Walker had the audacity to indicate that dealing with a major crisis in which a mob occupied the Wisconsin state capitol building and attempted to shut down the state government helped prepare him to deal with the terrorists of ISIS. And the Left, along with their media allies, are not going to let that analogy stand!
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) said something he shouldn't have on Thursday night during his speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference. Talking about the threat posed to the United States -- and the broader global community -- by the terrorist group that calls itself the Islamic State and is also known as ISIS, Walker volunteered: “If I can take on 100,000 protesters. I can do the same across the world.”
He's referring to the massive protests in 2011 at the Wisconsin State Capitol that followed hard on Walker's decision to push legislation that effectively ended collective bargaining for public-sector unions. And, you get what he's going for: I know about tough fights. I know about persisting in the face of adversity.
The problem for Walker is that Americans protesting at a state capitol over labor issues, while serious, is just not on the same level as the threat posed by a militant group that uses beheadings, burnings and other savagery to spread terror in the world. It might seem the same to Walker because the personal vitriol aimed at him was so massive during the protests and the recall effort that followed. (Walker beat the recall and won reelection.) But, it's just not -- and most people not in Walker's immediate orbit get that.
The mistake Walker made is the same one that politicians make when they compare something happening in, say, a domestic policy fight to what happened in Nazi Germany. As soon as you are comparing something that doesn't involve mass deaths and unspeakable atrocities to something that does, you've lost the argument. No fight over education policy or immigration is "like what the Nazis did" and/or "like what Hitler did." Ditto comparing a fight -- albeit a pitched one -- over collective bargaining to a group bent on terrorizing the world with its willingness to murder people.
No, the two things are not exact equivalents. But nobody with a lick of sense would believe that Walker meant them to be, His point was that, having dealt with the closest thing to an attempt to overthrow a state government since the rebellions lead by Daniel Shays in Massachusetts and Thomas Dorr in Rhode Island, he was prepared to deal with a crisis. He certainly did not intend to imply that union thugs are the same as jihadi practitioners of the religion that must not be named.
But more outrageous about this reaction is that the Left and their presstitute allies have never applied this sort of standard to drawing equivalency between Americans and terrorists -- provided that those being accused of being like terrorists are conservatives and those making the accusation are on the Left or part of the media.
Consider, after all, the rhetoric of those protesters in Wisconsin about Scott Walker himself. Heck, this is a protester in Wisconsin on Wednesday, February 25, opposing Walker's right to work legislation while it was being debated by the Wisconsin legislature.
That sign is not an isolated incident. Consider this from the 2011 recall campaign against him.
Or if you want to go bigger, you might want to consider the attacks by both Democrat politicians and various media figures likening conservatives and Republicans to terrorists.
Consider this attack on Rep. Paul Ryan by Pulitzer Prize-winning former New York Times reporter David Cay Johnston back in 2011. Apparently liking -- or even reading -- the works of political philosopher Ayn Rand makes one a terrorist, or at least a terrorist sympathizer.
I don't think their plan will pass, but it's important to understand what they're proposing, and Congressman Ryan requires his staff to read Ayn Rand, whose fictional hero, Howard Roark, is a man who blew up a building because it wasn't built exactly to his specifications as the architect.
I mean, that's the kind of society we want, where our leaders say not only are we gonna take from the sick and poor, but we’re going to hold out as a model people who commit felonies like blowing up buildings? We really need to dig into understanding the kind of people who would put forth these ideas."
Got that -- reading a dystopian novel designed to point out the flaws of big government and the benefits of liberty makes one an advocate of terrorism. Oddly enough, the media was silent -- perhaps because this came from one of their own.
For that matter, MSNBC has repeatedly hosted guests who have been permitted to accuse Republicans of terrorism without rebuke. Take this example from 2011.
"Frankly, the Republicans here, not all the Republicans, but the extreme right of the Republican party are acting like ideological terrorists. They're literally willing to blow up our economy and the future of our nation to score a few political points. And I think this is the point where the President has to say 'look, we don't negotiate with ideological terrorist,'" MSNBC guest Sally Kohn said on the "Last Word."
Again, no outrage -- just the norm from a mainstream media outlet.
For that matter, we've seen members of the Obama Administration accuse Republicans of being terrorists. Not low-level staffers -- among others, Vice President Joe Biden.
Vice President Joe Biden joined House Democrats in lashing tea party Republicans Monday, accusing them of having “acted like terrorists” in the fight over raising the nation’s debt limit, according to several sources in the room.
Biden was agreeing with a line of argument made by Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) at a two-hour, closed-door Democratic Caucus meeting.
“We have negotiated with terrorists,” an angry Doyle said, according to sources in the room. “This small group of terrorists have made it impossible to spend any money.”
Biden, driven by his Democratic allies’ misgivings about the debt-limit deal, responded: “They have acted like terrorists.”
Media outrage and condemnation? None at all. You see, it is OK to accuse Republicans of being terrorists if you don't like their efforts to rein in big government.
Senior White House adviser Dan Pfeiffer on Thursday compared Republican lawmakers to suicide bombers as the showdown over a possible government shutdown intensified.
“We are for cutting spending, we are for reforming our tax code, we are for reforming entitlements,” Mr. Pfeiffer told CNN’s Jake Tapper. “But what we are not for is negotiating with people who have a bomb strapped to their chest.”
Cuz, you know, folks who dare to disagree with the Left really are just like suicide bombers. Why would the press object to what they view as nothing more than a statement of fundamental truth?
Which is probably why President Obama was able to get by with making this accusation on Wednesday of this week -- and posting it on the official White House website.
And in the meantime, what we said to Republicans is, instead of trying to hold hostage funding for the Department of Homeland Security, which is so important for our national security, fund that, and let’s get on with actually passing comprehensive immigration reform.
You see, Republicans trying to stop the Lawbreaker-in-Chief from usurping the powers the Constitution delegates to the Legislative Branch is a tactic for terrorists -- and the media will stand by and nod their heads in affirmation as Obama makes that explicit charge.
But God forbid that Scott Walker dare to suggest that dealing with a domestic crisis toughened him up for dealing with national security crises if he is elected as our nation's chief executive. That's just beyond the pale.
The Senate Judiciary Committee voted Thursday to confirm U.S. Attorney Loretta E. Lynch as the next attorney general, sending her nomination to the full Senate, where it is expected to be voted on in the coming days.
By a vote of 12 to 8, the committee approved the nomination of Lynch, the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, as the first African American woman to take the reins of the Justice Department. Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. announced in September that he would step down as soon as the Senate approved a new nominee.
Republicans want to defund Obama’s illegal and unconstitutional amnesty for illegal immigrants. Obama and the Democrats want Loretta Lynch as Attorney General. Seems to me that there is room for compromise here – Senate Democrats end their filibuster of the House version of the DHS funding bill and the President signs it, then the GOP leadership schedules a floor vote on the Lynch nomination. Otherwise, that nomination never reaches the floor.
After all, what are Obama and the Democrats going to do – implicitly accuse the GOP of being terrorists and accuse them of taking hostages?
But ISIS executioner Jihadi John is anything but that.
The "Jihadi John" masked fighter who fronted Islamic State beheading videos is Mohammed Emwazi, a Kuwaiti-born Briton from a prosperous family who grew up in London and graduated with a computer programming degree, according to the Washington Post.
In videos released by Islamic State (IS), the black-clad militant brandishing a knife and speaking with an English accent appears to have decapitated hostages including Americans, Britons and Syrians.
The Washington Post said Emwazi, who used the videos to threaten the West and taunt leaders such as President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron, was believed to have travelled to Syria around 2012 and to have later joined IS.
"His real name, according to friends and others familiar with his case, is Mohammed Emwazi, a Briton from a well-to-do family who grew up in West London and graduated from college with a degree in computer programming," the Post said.
Just call this one more example of the incompetents in the Obama Administration getting things wrong.
President Obama warned workers at the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement: implement executive amnesty, or else. He made the comments in a town hall event on immigration on MSNBC.
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“If somebody’s working for ICE … and they don’t follow the policy, there’s going to be consequences to it.”
Wow! Just. . . wow. The Lawbreaker-in-Chief is going to punish those who insist upon following the law and the ruling of a federal judge on the matter of Obama’s illegal amnesty plan that Obama himself said for years was beyond his power to implement -- but those who break the laws of the United States will face no consequences at all. Unbelievable!
That is the question that ought to be asked in light of the latest veto threat from the Lawbreaker-in-Chief.
President Barack Obama’s town hall airing now on Telemundo included a vow to veto any efforts to roll back his immigration executive actions — and warned of consequences for immigration agents who don’t follow his new directives.
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“Unfortunately a group of Republican governors sued. They found a District Court judge who enjoined… but that’s just the first part of the process. This is just one federal judge. We have appealed it very aggressively. We’re going to be as aggressive as we can,” Obama said, per the White House pool.
“In the meantime, what we said to Republicans is, ‘Instead of trying to hold hostage funding for the Department of Homeland Security, which is so important for our national security, fund that and let’s get on with passing comprehensive immigration reform.’”
Obama then vowed to veto efforts by House and Senate Republicans “over whether what I’m doing is legal or not.”
The reality is that what Obama is doing is not legal – it is in direct violation of existing federal law and the constitutional prerogative of Congress to determine the rules for immigration and naturalization. Obama and his Democrat lackeys are prepared to shut down the Department of Homeland Security in order to implement an illegal policy to reward illegal aliens for violating American law. Why is it Republicans – who seek to uphold the law and the Constitution – who are being equated to terrorists? Why not those who are actually willing to endanger America in order to uphold a policy that has been ruled illegal by a federal judge and which is unconstitutional on its face?
I’ve got no problem with the average Muslim – but stuff like this raises serious questions as to whether Islam as practiced today constitutes a violation of international human rights norms.
On Tuesday morning, Saudi newspapers reported that the death sentence had been handed down in the town of Hafr al-Batin to a man who had "denounced his faith".
He was not named but was said to have uploaded a video of himself tearing up a copy of the Koran and hitting it with his shoe.
"In the video he cursed God, Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) and his daughter Fatimah and ripped a copy of the Holy Qur'an and hit it with a shoe," the Saudi Gazette quoted an official as saying. "The death sentence was issued after his apostasy was proved."
The death penalty is the standard penalty for apostasy in the Muslim world, though it is rarely carried out, even in Saudi Arabia which still carries out regular executions.
The man in this case has the right to appeal, and can also avoid the penalty by repenting.
Now let’s look at the relevant portions of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Article 18. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.
Article 19. Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
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Article 30. Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein.
Now let’s boil this down to its essentials.
This man has an internationally recognized human right to reject the faith in which he was raised and to instead embrace religious beliefs (or non-belief) without penalty.
This man has an internationally recognized right to communicate his contemptuous opinions of Islam’s false prophet and his daughter, and to express his contempt for the teachings of Islam by abusing his own inanimate personal property.
The government of Saudi Arabia has an obligation under international law to respect the right of this man to change his religion and to express his religious opinions.
That the Islamic faith demands the execution of individuals for exercising these fundamental human rights is itself a violation of internationally recognized human rights norms.
And the data proves it.
Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D., N.H.) accused Republicans of “blocking action” on the Department of Homeland Security funding bill that Senate Democrats are filibustering.
“Those who are blocking action have clear choice: are they going to prioritize politics or are they going to prioritize national security,” Shaheen said Tuesday during a press conference with Democratic leadership. “The American people are counting on us to put safety ahead of partisan politics.”
Senate Democrats have repeatedly filibustered a motion to debate the House-passed DHS appropriations bill because it includes a stipulation that Obama cannot use the money to implement his recent executive orders on immigration.
Republicans have passed a funding bill in the House.
Republicans have sufficient votes in the Senate to pass that funding bill.
Democrats have filibustered the bill, preventing it from coming to the Senate floor, so that Obama does not have to carry out his threat to veto the bill and take the heat for shutting down the Department of Homeland Security.
But somehow the Republicans are blocking action and responsible for the impending shutdown?
Only in the alternate reality inhabited by the Left.
UPDATE: Looks like Senator Amy Klobuchar lives there, too. Having voted against cloture on the DHS funding bill in order to shield Obama from another unpopular veto, she now demands that Republicans quit being obstructionist and aiding terrorists.
It seems to me it should.
The Palestinian Authority and the Palestine Liberation Organization were found liable on Monday by a jury in Manhattan for their role in knowingly supporting six terrorist attacks in Israel between 2002 and 2004 in which Americans were killed and injured.
The damages are to be $655.5 million, under a special terrorism law that provides for tripling the $218.5 million awarded by the jury in Federal District Court.
The verdict ended a decade-long legal battle to hold the Palestinian organizations responsible for the terrorist acts, an effort that encompassed fights over jurisdiction, merit and even practicality: History has shown that it is difficult for victims of international terrorism to bring their civil cases to trial, let alone to recover damages.
The United States government gives some $400 million in foreign aid to the Palestinian Authority annually. It seems to me that this jury verdict ought to be sufficient to end that funding permanently – unless the US government intends to add itself to its annual list of state sponsors of terrorism.
I answered this question back in 2007. Let me repeat it for those of you who weren’t around back then.
Guys, Barack Obama is a Christian. I may have some serious problems with his theology -- after all, the UCC is such a mess theologically that it approaches apostasy on a regular basis -- but I have no reason to doubt his sincerity when he calls himself a Christian.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a prospective Republican presidential contender, said Saturday he does not know whether President Obama is a Christian.
“I don’t know,” Walker said in an interview at the JW Marriott hotel in Washington, where he was attending the winter meeting of the National Governors Association.
Told that Obama has frequently spoken publicly about his Christian faith, Walker maintained that he was not aware of the president’s religion.
“I’ve actually never talked about it or I haven’t read about that,” Walker said, his voice calm and firm. “I’ve never asked him that,” he added. “You’ve asked me to make statements about people that I haven’t had a conversation with about that. How [could] I say if I know either of you are a Christian?”
Walker went on to point out, rightly, that the media focus on the question is a distraction and not relevant to most Americans. And given that Walker is the son of a Baptist minister for whom that question (“Is someone a Christian?”) has a certain theological context that folks who are Catholic or members of mainline denominations (not to mention secular Jews) don’t generally think about (“Do you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior?” as opposed to “Were you baptized?”), I can understand why he said that he is unsure based upon his lack of having had a conversation with Obama about his faith.
But the reality is that over the last several years, events have made it reasonable for folks to wonder about Obama and his religious beliefs. So let me make the following observation and suggest that there is a better response to questions about Obama’s faith than the one I gave in 2007, one that looks something like this:
Well, Obama SAYS he is a Christian, but that there is plenty of evidence that can lead one to be unsure about his faith.
- Like his long time membership in congregation that appeared to be more of a racist cult built around a monomaniacal leader.
- Like his seeming contempt for fellow Christians who take their faith and the Bible seriously.
- Like claims by his campaign manager that positions he took based upon his faith were mere vote getting lies.
- Like his great solicitude for Islam over and above any other faith -- including Christianity and Judaism.
As such, it isn't unreasonable to have doubts about the depth or sincerity of Obama’s Christian faith. But in the end that is a matter between Obama and God, not Obama and the American people, because our Constitution forbids religious tests for the holding of public office.
Would that satisfy the Democrat-Media Establishment? Probably not – but it ought to satisfy Americans who are more interested in solving America’s problems than bickering over non-substantive matters. After all, whether Barack Obama is or is not a Christian are irrelevant to solving the serious issues facing this country.
Does Barack Obama love America? That is a question which strikes so many as both absurd and offensive, and which the press is turning into a litmus test. Rudy Giuliani raised the issue last week in a talk before a private function, and now the nation is abuzz with talk on the subject.
The reality is that we can probably safely claim that Obama loves America – and at the same time assert that his love for this country is irrelevant. After all, a person – indeed, a leader – can love his country while still favoring policies that are harmful to it.
Consider, for example, one of the great dictators of the twentieth century – Benito Mussolini. Most of the world looks upon the Fascist leader and views him as evil. But in 1931, Mussolini was visited by Mahatma Ghandi – and Ghandi was struck by the dictator’s “passionate love for his people”. Mussolini undoubtedly loved Italy, and aspired to raise that country to greatness. Does that love of country – call it patriotism or nationalism or what you will – excuse or mitigate the harm that his program ultimately inflicted upon his country?
Or consider Fidel Castro. A committed revolutionary, it is undeniable that Castro has also committed his life to what he views as the betterment of Cuba. Unfortunately, that vision of a fundamentally transformed Cuba involved oppression of the people, suppression of liberties, and imprisonment of those who dared to have a different vision. Does that love of Cuba make up for the fact that the Castro’s program has been harmful to the Cuban people?
Read the Quotations of Chairman Mao in his “Little Red Book”. Does Mao not talk about the revolutionary devoting himself to the transformation of his country? Of course he does, even arguing that a revolutionary devoted to the concept of internationalism must first love his own country. Lenin wrote of the importance of national pride among the Russian people and his sharing of that pride – yet for all that he indicated that he loved Russia, was the revolution that Lenin brought about a boon for the Russian people? Stalin went so far as to call World War II “the Great Patriotic War” and spoke of the importance of devotion to the Soviet Union – but was this love of country the sort of love that should be praised and emulated?
Which leads us back to Barack Obama. Obama has long talked of fundamentally transforming America as his major goal. He has long said that he views that transformation as being something that will improve this country, making it a better place. That, for me, indicates that Obama does feel some sort of love of for this country. Unfortunately, the policies he has sought to implement as a part of this transformation do not sit well with many of his fellow Americans and have done harm to them. Consider that Obamacare has been a failure and has been massively unpopular. Look at the fact that his economic policies have moved more Americans out of the labor force and onto the government dole. Remember that the national debt has increased by roughly 8 billion dollars during the Obama administration and gone from 68% of GDP to 101% of GDP during that time. Is it any wonder that some would question whether Obama has been good for America – and if the transformation he has wrought has been based on a love for America or a desire to lay her low?
But as for me, I prefer the simpler argument – namely that Obama did not seek high office with nefarious intent. Instead, like the four men of the Left I cited earlier – men who set out to fundamentally transform nations that they loved – the problem is with the progressive policies that Obama seeks to impose. That may not pass the neo-McCarthyite media’s standard for affirming the patriotism of the unicorn-riding demigod in the Oval Office, but it is the best that they will get from me.