Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

Should America do anything to save left-wing hikers in Iran?

Middle East Map

Middle East Map

From the Wall Street Journal.

Excerpt:

Imagine you are Shane Bauer, one of two American hikers released from Iranian captivity last week.

On July 31, 2009, you’re traversing a mountain trail in Iraqi Kurdistan, near the Iranian border. You’re with one of your best friends and your girlfriend. Suddenly a group of Iranian border guards capture you, and the next thing you know you’re in Tehran’s infamous Evin prison accused of “illegal entry” and “espionage.”

Your girlfriend is kept in solitary confinement and you can see her only for an hour each day. The Iranian government prevents you from contacting your family for almost a year, at which point they decide to let your mother visit you for two days at a Tehran hotel.

While your captors treat you humanely and provide three square meals a day, your Iranian co-prisoners aren’t so lucky. Every night you hear their screams. Evin is the world’s most notorious torture dungeon, where political dissidents (men and women) are routinely raped, beaten and subjected to all manner of physical and psychological abuse.

Ahmad Batebi, a student activist who spent 17 months in solitary confinement there, reports that guards kicked him in the teeth, dunked his head into a toilet “stopped up with feces,” and whipped his back and testicles with a cable. When he tried to sleep, they slashed his arms with a knife and rubbed salt in the wounds.

[...]Following two years of strenuous work on the part of committed American diplomats, you are freed on $500,000 bail, paid by the billionaire Sultan of Oman. And what is the first thing you say upon your release?

“Two years in prison is too long and we sincerely hope for the freedom of other political prisoners and other unjustly imprisoned people in America and Iran.”

Mr. Bauer didn’t name any of the “political prisoners” allegedly held in America’s jails—because there aren’t any. So is this a case of Stockholm Syndrome? Perhaps, but Mr. Bauer likely came to his views while earning a degree in “Peace and Conflict Studies” at Berkeley, if not before. On a website calling for his release, a friend attests to his “strong critic[ism] of the US-led brutal war on Iraq and Israel’s ongoing violence against the Palestinian people.”

On Sunday, Mr. Bauer said that he opposes “U.S. policies toward Iran which perpetuate this hostility”—as if American belligerence, and not Iranian tyranny and terror, causes tension between the countries. Though he criticized Tehran’s “brutality,” he gave credence to his captors’ grievances when he said that “every time we complained about our conditions, the guards would immediately remind us of comparable conditions at Guantanamo”—as if the claims of a government that denies the Holocaust have any validity.

[...]A website calling for Mr. Bauer’s release asked, “Why is Iran holding anti-war activists?” The answer eludes Mr. Bauer and his ilk for the same reason that they believe a moral equivalence exists between the Islamic Republic and America: Tehran does not care for international norms of behavior. A student of the Middle East, Mr. Bauer should know that his ordeal at the hands of the Iranian government is but an echo of the crime that inaugurated the Islamic Republic itself—the 1979 seizure of the American Embassy in Tehran and the holding of our diplomats hostage for 444 days.

If I were in charge, I would not have wasted a second or a penny on these three. I’m furious at these people. Why don’t they stay in Iran, if they hate America so much? Hypocrites.

When I think of all the people who are not Americans, but who love America more than these natural-born traitors, it makes me sick.

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Obama says that adding 4 trillion to the debt is unpatriotic… then does it

Here’s the speech from July 3, 2008:

Ha! That looks like Obama giving that speech. Oh, it is Obama. Ha ha.

In that clip, Obama says:

The problem is, is that the way Bush has done it over the last eight years is to take out a credit card from the Bank of China in the name of our children, driving up our national debt from $5 trillion for the first 42 presidents – #43 added $4 trillion by his lonesome, so that we now have over $9 trillion of debt that we are going to have to pay back — $30,000 for every man, woman and child. That’s irresponsible. It’s unpatriotic.

Obama liked to talk about the credit card from the bank of China during the campaign. And many people who watch Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert and Rachel Maddow believed him. They believed him because the comedians told them to believe him. They did not want to stop laughing long enough to look at Obama’s voting record to see that he was consistently getting F ratings on spending and government waste and pork in all of his years as a legislator.

So Obama said that spending 4 trillion is “unpatriotic”. But then Obama did a funny thing. CBS News reports.

The latest posting by the Treasury Department shows the national debt has now increased $4 trillion on President Obama’s watch.

The debt was $10.626 trillion on the day Mr. Obama took office. The latest calculation from Treasury shows the debt has now hit $14.639 trillion.

It’s the most rapid increase in the debt under any U.S. president.

The national debt increased $4.9 trillion during the eight-year presidency of George W. Bush. The debt now is rising at a pace to surpass that amount during Mr. Obama’s four-year term.

Mr. Obama blames policies inherited from his predecessor’s administration for the soaring debt. He singles out:

“two wars we didn’t pay for”
“a prescription drug program for seniors…we didn’t pay for.”
“tax cuts in 2001 and 2003 that were not paid for.”

He goes on to blame the recession, and its resulting decrease in tax revenue on businesses, for making fewer sales, and more employees being laid off. He says the recession also resulted in more government spending due to increased unemployment insurance payments, subsidies to farms and funding of infrastructure programs that were part of his stimulus program.

Obama’s explanation for the deficits doesn’t wash, since the deficit was only $162 billion in 2007, the last year the Republicans had control of the House and Senate.

The Washington Times explains.

Excerpt:

A favorite liberal narrative is that President George W. Bush squan- dered the Clinton-era budget surpluses and piled up deficits with expensive wars and tax cuts for the rich. Candidate Barack Obama used this tale to great effect, and President Obama tells it still. Take his State of the Union address last week, when Mr. Obama attributed the Bush-era deficits to “paying for two wars, two tax cuts, and an expensive prescription drug program.”

The truth is that Mr. Bush’s deficits were the product of spending, not tax cuts. In fact, Mr. Obama could learn an important lesson for his own economic plan by studying Mr. Bush’s two very different attempts at tax-cutting.

As the Wall Street Journal’s Stephen Moore illuminates in his 2008 book “The End of Prosperity” (Threshold Editions), Mr. Bush’s 2001 tax cuts failed to revive an economy still staggering from the bursting of the dot-com bubble. Mr. Bush’s strategy had been to adopt a demand-side, Keynesian stimulus, hoping that putting a few extra dollars in Americans’ pockets would jump-start the economy through increased consumption. This approach faltered, not just because Americans opted to save their rebates, but because it neglected the importance of business investment to overall growth. Predictably, the economy lagged and government revenues stagnated. What the United States needed then (and needs now) was to stimulate investment, not consumption.

By 2003, Mr. Bush grasped this lesson. In that year, he cut the dividend and capital gains rates to 15 percent each, and the economy responded. In two years, stocks rose 20 percent. In three years, $15 trillion of new wealth was created. The U.S. economy added 8 million new jobs from mid-2003 to early 2007, and the median household increased its wealth by $20,000 in real terms.

But the real jolt for tax-cutting opponents was that the 03 Bush tax cuts also generated a massive increase in federal tax receipts. From 2004 to 2007, federal tax revenues increased by $785 billion, the largest four-year increase in American history. According to the Treasury Department, individual and corporate income tax receipts were up 40 percent in the three years following the Bush tax cuts. And (bonus) the rich paid an even higher percentage of the total tax burden than they had at any time in at least the previous 40 years. This was news to theNew York Times, whose astonished editorial board could only describe the gains as a “surprise windfall.”

Unfortunately, Mr. Bush allowed Congress to spend away those additional tax revenues. The fact is that the increase in tax revenues that flowed from the ‘03 tax cuts could have paid for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and then some but for rampant discretionary domestic spending.

So, Bush passed his tax cuts in 2001 and 2003, but revenue went up:

Federal receipts after Bush tax cuts

Federal receipts after Bush tax cuts

And the deficits went down from 2004 to 2007:

Obama Budget Deficit 2011

Obama Budget Deficit 2011

Bush was on track to balance the budget, then Nancy Pelosi came along and added 5.34 trillion to the debt in her 4 years as Speaker.

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Left-wing Democrat groups pack Stephen Colbert / Jon Stewart rally

Politco has the list of some of the left-wing Democrat special interest groups who attended the pro-Obama rally staged by left-wing radicals Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart.

Excerpt:

Abortion-rights supporters, marijuana fans, environmental activists, government watchdogs and the Democratic National Committee all will be cruising the Mall and spreading their messages in the hopes of winning hearts, minds and votes three days before Election Day.

— At least 100 MoveOn.org Political Action volunteers will serve 25,000 cups of hot chocolate that advertise a get-out-the-vote effort people can join by texting the organization.

— Public Citizen’s government watchdogs are giving out 5,000 signs featuring slogan-contest winners like “It’s a Democracy, Not an Auction,” chosen from 6,000 entries.

— Abortion rights supporters from NARAL will be trolling the Mall, metro stations and the bus parking lot at RFK Stadium, some in Lady Liberty costumes, rewarding people who sign up to volunteer with a sticker saying, “Vote Pro-Choice. Politicians Make Crappy Doctors” — also a product of a slogan contest.

— After the rally, the pro-pot activists at Students for Sensible Drug Policy are set to do eight hours of phone banking urging California voters to support Proposition 19, which would legalize marijuana in the state.

None of the groups quite know what kind of crowd to expect — MoveOn’s Ilyse Hogue called it a “huge mystery.” — but they figure it will probably be young, liberal and frustrated. Just the kind of folks whose untapped energy can be channeled into get-out-the-vote efforts.

Two clowns organizing a rally for the Clown-In-Chief. Yay! 10% unemployment! 3 trillion in budget deficits! Everyone laugh! It’s so funny!

The radically leftist New York Times reports that the Democratic National Committee will be heavily involved in the Colbert/Stewart rally.

Excerpt:

…the Democratic National Committee is doing everything it can to capitalize on the event.

Volunteers and staff members from the headquarters are greeting people as they get off of the buses or arrive in Washington on trains, armed with sign-up sheets for canvassing efforts in districts across the country.

And for those rally attendees who have not gotten enough of politics by the end of the rally, they can head over to the the committee’s headquarters a few blocks away, where there will be a phone bank. Committee officials said they expected to get at least 100 people there.

The rally had been a subject of concern for some Democrats, who said it would siphon the most active Democrats from around the country away from the get-out-the-vote efforts in their home states and districts.

But a spokeswoman for the Democratic committee’s Organizing for America said Saturday that the party is supportive of the Comedy Central hosts’ event.

“We think having people energized and enthusiastic in the final days before Election Day is great,” said the spokeswoman, Lynda Tran. “OFA is urging people to head from the rally to a phone bank or to pick up a canvass and go door to door to urge their friends, neighbors, and communities to head to the polls on Tuesday.”

Indeed. And the rally is supported by Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, Barack Obama’s old anti-American terrorist buddies, too.

Excerpt:

When comics Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert announced their rallies on the national mall scheduled for this Saturday, they may not have expected—or wanted—an endorsement from Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers. But Ayers told the Ford Motor Company-sponsored Green Festival in Washington, D.C. last Saturday that the event will be a needed respite from the “Alice in Wonderland” world of military domination of the planet and wars waged by the U.S. “empire.”

The October 30 Stewart/Colbert rallies, dubbed “Restore Sanity” and “Keep Fear Alive,” are “worth attending,” Ayers said.

[...]Ayers and Dohrn had staged a fundraiser for Obama when he began his political career by running for the Illinois State Senate. Ayers and Obama served on a board and appeared at functions together. During the campaign, however, Obama tried to play down his relationship with the terror couple.

All of Obama’s buddies from Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn to Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are very excited about the rally. I’m sure Reverend Jeremiah Wright would approve, as well.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Obama administration complains about Arizona immigration law to China

From CNS News.

Excerpt:

In a “candid and constructive” human rights dialogue with officials from the People’s Republic of China last week, Obama administration officials brought up Arizona’s new immigration-enforcement law, telling the Chinese Communists it was an example of a “troubling trend” in the United States and an indication of “discrimination or potential discrimination” in American society.

Ironically, the State Department’s most recent report on human rights in China indicates that the government there restricts the internal travel of its own citizens.

[...]On Fox News Tuesday morning, State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley–trying to defend Posner’s comments – was asked if he had read the ten-page Arizona law. He said he has not read it, although he did criticize it.

Attorney General Eric Holder, who is weighing a constitutional challenge to the law, admitted last week that he has not read it; and Homeland Secretary Janet Napolitano on Monday told a Senate panel that she had not read the law, either.

The People’s Republic of China is “an authoritarian state in which the Chinese Communist Party constitutionally is the paramount source of power,” according to the State Department’s 2009 Human Rights report on China.

The report also states, “Individuals and groups, especially those deemed politically sensitive by the government, continued to face tight restrictions on their freedom to assemble, practice religion, and travel.”

China is one of the biggest violators of basic human rights on the planet. So what do the Democrats do? They go to the major human rights violators and tell them that the United States is just as evil. We’re evil because we protect our borders and enforce our immigration laws. China murders people for their religion and sells their organs, and we’re equal to China – at least according to Democrats.

UPDATE: Republican senators are demanding that the Obama administration publicly retract their outrageous comments.

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MUST-SEE: Bill Whittle explains American exceptionalism to the left

ECM sends us the next great video from Bill Whittle.

(Note: there is a vulgar reference at the beginning when he quoted Bill Maher)

This is compelling. I mean, this really floored me. This is an engaging video you will remember.

He analyzes four areas where America dominates:

  • Military
  • Economic
  • Scientific
  • Cultural

America is indeed exceptionally great. Without a doubt the greatest country in the history of the universe. I encourage all of international visitors, to watch this video and learn about why America is an exceptional country.

Hope you didn’t miss Bill’s last video on media bias at MSNBC.

College Republicans preparing list of leftist professors

Andrew sent me this article from Fox News.

Excerpt:

The University of Toledo’s College Republicans are compiling a list of liberal professors who they claimed have a bias against conservative students.

The list will include professors who students say have let their political views interfere with the way they interact with students in the classroom.

UT College Republicans President Matt Rubin, a junior majoring in political science and public administration, said the list is not an attempt to bash professors who have liberal ideas, but instead, it is an attempt to speak out for students who may have been victims of the bias, which was then reflected in their grade.

This is controversial, but I am in favor of it. Suppression of conservatives and Christians on campus is one of my major concerns. In the meantime, I encourage parents to home-school their children using an old-earth curriculum heavily slanted towards the classics and mathematics. If the children go on to university, they should study mathematics, computer science, chemistry or physics.

Filed under: Videos, , , , , , , , ,

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