Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Native Hawaiians blockade historic palace

Another subjugated people is starting to pull away from the DC empire:

A native Hawaiian group that advocates sovereignty locked the gates of a historic palace Wednesday in downtown Honolulu, saying it would carry out the business of what it considers the legitimate government of the islands.

State deputy sheriffs weren't allowing anyone else to enter Iolani Palace grounds as unarmed security guards from the Hawaiian Kingdom Government group blocked all gates to the palace, which is adjacent to the Hawaii Capitol.

To paraphrase Delmar from "O, Brother, where art thou?", "Uncle Sam, some of your conquered province is coming unstole."

The scientific empire

In his review of Soldiers of Reason: The RAND Corporation and the Rise of the American Empire, Chalmers Johnson notes that RAND sells interventionism as the extension of social engineering by other means:

Much of RAND's work was always ideological, designed to support the American values of individualism and personal gratification as well as to counter Marxism, but its ideological bent was disguised in statistics and equations, which allegedly made its analyses "rational" and "scientific." Abella writes:

"If a subject could not be measured, ranged, or classified, it was of little consequence in systems analysis, for it was not rational. Numbers were all – the human factor was a mere adjunct to the empirical."

In my opinion, Abella here confuses numerical with empirical. Most RAND analyses were formal, deductive, and mathematical but rarely based on concrete research into actually functioning societies.

In other words, RAND makes its bucks by packaging the dominant American ideology of triumphalism, materialism, and the mastery of nature for the military-industrial complex. That ideology was what the Twelve Southerners referred to in "I'll Take My Stand," as the "gospel of Progress." In his contribution to that ever-useful work, John Crowe Ransom denounced this cult as an endless war against nature, against human nature itself:

Progress never defines its ultimate objective, but thrusts its victims at once into an infinite series. Our vast industrial machine, with its laboratory centers of experimentation, and its far-flung organs of mass production, is like a Prussianized state which is organized strictly for war and can never consent to peace. Or, returning to the original figure, our progressivists are the latest version of those pioneers who conquered the wilderness, except that they are pioneering on principle, or from force of habit, and without any recollection of what pioneering was for. p. 8

How fitting then, that an ideology based on eternal war as an ideal should guide the war machine -- even if it guides it toward inevitable ruin.

After all, that's exactly what happened in the Empire's most disastrous war (to date), Vietnam. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara was an expert in statistical control, which he relied on to predict the outcome of American operations. He'd served with distinction as a systems analyst for the Air Force during World War II. As Barbara Tuchman described him in his capacity as the architect of the Vietnam War, "his genius for statistics left little respect for human variables and no room for unpredictables." [The March of Folly, p. 252] His statistical analysis PROVED that American firepower was killing more insurgents than Vietnam could long sustain, making eventual American success "assured."

And we all know how that went. DC puzzled over Vietnamese stubbornness. "We anticipated that they would respond like reasonable people," said one Defense Department official. Instead of responding reasonably, the Vietnamese responded like people, like human beings driven by deep-seated loyalties and emotions, and won despite the odds.

But Iraq will be different. Just ask General Odom.

War supporters fight it out -- among themselves?

The other-worldly war bloggers keep proclaiming victory is at hand ...

Meanwhile, Bush regime has-beens keep blaming each other for Iraq:

- Wolfowitz Admits 'Clueless' on Counterinsurgency

- The “Stupidest Guy on the Face of the Earth” Points Fingers (by Ken Silverstein, the greatest of the investigative reporters)

- Ex-Overseer of Iraq Says U.S. Effort Was Hampered Early On

- Bush Sought ‘Way’ To Invade Iraq?

- White House admits fault on 'Mission Accomplished' banner

Gee -- who's to blame for this magnificent victory?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Vermont Commons Editor Rob Williams talks to the SPLC

Heidi Beirich of the Southern Poverty Law Center tossed a question at the editor of Vermont Commons in her famously impartial, objective manner: "Do you still beat the slaves that the racist League of the South sold to you?"

Ok, it wasn't quite that blatant, but it was the usual guilty-if-we-say-so attitude all too typical of the SPLC. However, Mr. Williams calmly responded with the facts, and real class:

You state in your question above, Heidi, that the League of the South is “clearly racist,” and would “like to create a racist society in their seceded state.”

Yet, the League of the South issued a public statement in 2004 specifically denouncing racism, a statement explicitly explaining that they do not want a racist state in a secessionist nation.

The “racism” charge, by the way, has become a convenient way for a few outspoken Vermonters who may not agree with our goals to throw stones at us.

Wow. Then he hit her with this:

While some Vermont journalists have taken the time to check in with us about our work, many bloggers – who love to flap their electronic jowls in cyberspace - have attacked us repeatedly without ever once bothering to contact us to find out what we really think.

This must have been mind-altering to Heidi, since demonizing people and grass-roots organizations without giving them a chance to present their side is the SPLC's standard operating procedure. And when she or any SPLC inquisitor utters the word "racism," most victims run for cover.

Rob, here's a well-deserved shot of Jack Daniels in your honor:



Thanks to Conservative Heritage Times!

The Philosophy of Secession

This won't make it into anyone's "light reading" list, but it's worth noting as yet another signpost of the new world we're in. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy doesn't add new categories unless the need is overwhelming, and, as this introduction makes clear, the topic of secession as a philosophical theory has attained its own sense of urgency. We couldn't agree more.

Until quite recently secession has been a neglected topic among philosophers. Two factors may explain why philosophers have now begun to turn their attention to secession. First, in the past decade there has been a great increase not only in the number of attempted secessions, but also in successful secessions, and philosophers may simply be reacting to this new reality, attempting to make normative sense of it. Second, in the same decade the idea that there is a strong case for some form of self-government for groups presently contained within states has gained ground. Once one begins to take seriously the case for special group rights for minorities — especially if these include rights of self-government — it is difficult to avoid the question of whether some such groups may be entitled to full independence.

Neocon admits error!

American Neocon Francis Fukuyama at the end of the Cold War:

"What we may be witnessing is not just the end of the Cold War, or the passing of a particular period of post-war history, but the end of history as such... That is, the end point of mankind's ideological evolution and the universalisation of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government."

But in his latest book, American Neocon Robert Kagan says -- not so fast, Francis:

"The world was not witnessing a transformation, however, merely a pause in the endless competition of nations and peoples. Nationalism, far from being weakened by globalisation has now returned with a vengeance."

The French Jacobins, the Russian, Soviet, and Cuban Communists, and now the American Neocons have been proven wrong -- the universalism they imagined had triumphed was eventually upended by nationalism, which will endure as long as there are men and women who love their own people more than abstractions.

Does Wright want Obama to lose?

Gee -- it's fun to listen to Rush again. I found him very therapeutic during the Clinton years, but pretty much kept the dial off his station during most of the seemingly endless Iraq War pep rally. But now that there's opposition to John McCain to re-unite us, he's worth listening to again.

And then there's this:

I watched some of Reverend Wright this morning at the National Press Club. It seems obvious to me that he's doing everything he can to wipe out Obama's candidacy, and I'll tell you why I think it is. I think that people like Reverend Wright -- and I think there are a lot of other race business hustlers out there, by the way, who think this -- really upset that if a black candidate is elected president, that they're going to be somehow diminished in their task, at keeping everybody in their flocks all revved up and angry about the ages old sin of slavery and the ongoing discrimination.

Makes sense. Wright's in the same boat as the Southern Poverty Law Center, which is so invested in keeping racial conflict alive that it has to champion illegal immigrants and brand anyone who opposes Open Borders as having Nazi sympathies. If they didn't have the Latino invasion going for them, they'd have to get real jobs.

Why Southern pride must die

If you've ever wondered what stokes anti-Southern hatred, here's a short but powerful explanation. It's from The Big Box Swindle, a book I've previously mentioned. Here, this eye-opening expose of the hidden costs of the megachains analyzes how local small businesses and citizens successfully prevent the big boxes from sucking the life out of their downtowns:

Today, who prevails in a big-box fight often hinges on how local residents conceive of themselves. Opponents of these projects appeal to people's broad sense of being citizens and stewards of their community, which is why they often choose names like "Our Town." Chain retailers, on the other hand, win by getting people to assume the narrow role of consumer and to see the issue as simply a matter of shopping options. Although dominant today, this consumer identity is a relatively recent invention; it only became a powerful force in American politics in the years after World War II. p. 205

Isn't that exactly why Southerners are targeted by the multicult/globalists?

Leftist ideologues despise our devotion to the Southern tradition, whose resistance to big government stands in the way of their dreams of reconstructing the world into a socialist paradise. And the globalist corporations see local traditions and cultures as speed bumps on the road that leads to the maximization of profit. As Daniel Larison has noted:

Finally, vital differences among individuals are effaced. For the economist, all human beings are alike, not of course because they have some higher calling in common but because they all rationally pursued objectives that are equally irrational. Homo economicus is cold, rational, and utilitarian; he is gifted in calculating but empty of substance. Human beings are indistinguishable in their way of being; they can only be distinguished by their incomes, their levels of consumption or productivity. Here, everything that Peguy loves, all that he celebrates–good manners and morals, fine workmanship, beautiful language, simple joys, bonds of the flesh, the honor of the poor, the genius of Homer–none of this has any meaning. We are indeed in the world of equality by default.

That's the kind of equality both leftist and corporate levellers yearn for, and that's why both praise and feed from multiculturalism. It's no wonder, then, that both target Southerners.

Despite this undeclared war against them, most Southerners remain loyal to a political system controlled by those who are determined to eradicate them as a people. Pat Buchanan has pointed out the absurdity of a relationship characterized by one-sided loyalty on one side, and enmity on the other. Globalist Neocons, says Buchanan, openly despise the very people who supply the muscle and faith they exploit for their own purposes:

Why the Hollywood Left hates Dixie is easy to understand. It is conservative, Christian, traditionalist, hostile to the cultural revolution. But why do the neocons? After all, the folks Krauthammer calls “white trash” are the most reliable conservative voters in America, God-and-country people. They enlist in disproportionate numbers in the military, and die in disproportionate numbers in America’s wars.

The answer is simple: both globalists and the multicult Left share the same goals. Both see the centralization of economic and political power as essential in achieving them. The eradication of historic identity paves the way toward the reconstruction of society and the maximization of profits. While the multicult left propagandizes about universalism and the glorious cause of freeing people from the constraints of history and tradition, big business chimes in with seductive advertising that redefines citizens as interchangeable consumers. Government bureaucracies grow in order to enforce egalitarian ideals, employing and empowering the multicult left. And an ever-expanding big government provides subsidies and favorable legislation to big business.

Understanding this is vital to fighting the most important struggle of our generation. The attack on our identity is an attack on our liberty and prosperity. Instead of preserving our civilization, and striving to “secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity,” we are supposed to reconstruct ourselves into a multicultural empire, a supposedly benevolent empire with a big heart and bigger fist, which enables it to serve the world as the militant vanguard of global democracy. But in fact, all empires, from Napoleonic France to the Soviet Union, also saw themselves as benevolent liberators, yet actually tyrannized their native and subject populations. It’s no coincidence that the more “multicultural” the US becomes, the less we defend our traditional freedoms, evidenced by such measures as the PATRIOT Act.

As the most stubbornly distinctive ethnic group in America, Southerners remain the biggest impediment to the multicult/globalist agenda.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Re-defining conservatism to death

Today's Humpty Dumpty award goes to Andrew Sullivan:

It seems to me to be fair to call those who would ratchet up the debt "left-wing." If you still believe, as I do, that conservatism is about balancing the budget, then McCain is the least conservative of all three candidates. He is fiscally the furthest left out there.

Well, of course. If there's nothing to "conservatism" but watching the bottom line, then promoting same-sex marriage and howling at those horrible "Christianists" can be part of the new 'n improved "conservative" agenda.

Hope for Corporate America

If you really think Barack Hussein Obama represents something new in American politics, then the only thing that's new is you to this blog.

Presidential elections are hyped as job interviews in which the sovereign American people decide who's best qualified in taking us toward the direction they want to take the country. Instead, elections are choreographed acts whose sole function is to laminate the ruling elite's unchallenged dominion over us with a shiny coating of legitimacy. Whatever they do to us, we asked for it.

Or so they'd have you believe.

Obama's part of the problem, not the solution. His resume, shallow as it is, tells us everything we need to know about him:

Obama, as you will see if you examine his voting record, has repeatedly rewarded those who reward him. As a senator he has promoted nuclear energy as “green.” He has been lauded by the nuclear power industry, which is determined to resume building nuclear power plants across the country. He has voted to continue to fund the Iraq war. He opposed Rep. John Murtha’s call for immediate withdrawal. He refused to join the 13 senators who voted against confirming Condoleezza Rice as secretary of state. He voted in July 2005 to reauthorize the Patriot Act.

That's why corporate America is so on-board with this leftist -- his public persona will pretty up the military industrial agenda:

The same Beltway lobbyists, corporate donors and public relations firms, the same weapons manufacturers, defense contractors, nuclear power companies and Wall Street interests that give Clinton and John McCain money, give Obama money. They happen, in fact, to give Obama more. And the corporate state, which is carrying out a coup d’état in slow motion, believes it will prosper in Obama’s hands. If not, he would not be a viable candidate. We have come full circle, back to the age of the robber barons and railroad magnates of the late 19th century who selected members of corrupt state assemblies to be their pliable senators and congressmen and sent them off to Washington to do their bidding.

Once again, Corporate America can't lose. There will be an Open Borders interventionist in the White House. Ain't democracy grand?

How the South Won (This) Civil War

This may be just another anti-Southern rant, but with a subtitle like "Maybe it's time for the North to secede from the Union," it's at least worth reading. The other noteworthy feature of this odd mix of history and personal hostility is that he at least understands our actual origins:

This region was heavily settled by Scots-Irish immigrants--the same ethnic mix King James I sent to Northern Ireland to clear out the native Celtic Catholics. After succeeding at that, they then settled the American Frontier, suffering Indian raids and fighting for their lives every step of the way. And the Southern frontiersmen never got over their hatred of the East Coast elites and a belief in the morality and nobility of defying them. Their champion was the Indian-fighter Andrew Jackson.

The outcome was that a substantial portion of the new nation developed, over many generations, a rather savage, unsophisticated set of mores.

The problem, according to the author, is that those terrible Southerners have managed to escape the restraints imposed on them by their enlightened Yankee conquerors, and have transformed America into a -- brace yourselves -- less "tolerant" nation:
Traditionally, it has been balanced by a more diplomatic, communitarian Yankee sensibility from the Northeast and upper Midwest. But that latter sensibility has been losing ground in population numbers--and cultural weight.

The coarsened sensibility that this now-dominant Southernism and frontierism has brought to our national dialogue is unmistakable.

But if all this fuss enables us to free ourselves of Chablis-sipping social engineers, we'll gladly endure a little name-calling. We've been through worse.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Silencing dissidents

This is the age of branding.

If you put a label on a bottle of water that says Bling H20, then people will pay $45.00 for it. It's really worth it -- othewise, it wouldn't say "Bling H20," would it?

Sadly, that same mentality infects political discourse. You can parry any argument merely by labeling it as racist. Of course, liberals started this insanity, and Neocons do it, too. But now it's gotten so bad, even the liberals are starting to weary of it. Here's Glenn Greenwald on the risk of criticizing Israel:

All sorts of neoconservatives and their various organs have spent the last year insinuating to American Jews in key voting locales (such as South Florida) that they cannot possibly vote for Barack Obama because he doesn't "support Israel" (by which they mean militaristic Likudnik policies that are actually quite damaging to Israel and which huge numbers of American Jews and even Israelis themselves reject). At the same, in order to prevent this tactic from being challenged or even discussed, they scream "anti-semite!" at anyone who points out a benevolent and painfully obvious fact: that many Americans Jews have loyalties to Israel that influence their voting behavior and political positions -- the very premise on which these smear campaigns are predicated.

Though I am a member of a decidedly non-liberal organization, the League of the South, I can sympathize. Our main goal is to restore the right of self-government for the people of the South, and argue that the policies of the over-centralized, unaccountable regime in DC harms those it claims to protect, both black and white. But by questioning the welfare/warfare state, we are condemned for everything from "racial insensitivity" (?) to outright racism. The facts we bolster our arguments with are simply irrelevant because the doberman pinschers of political correctness at the Southern Poverty Law Center have branded us as a hate group. We're bad people, so crazed with blind hatred for blacks that our denunciations of the harm done by social reengineering are nothing but a cover for our real motives. When we point out that anything resembling actual hate speech never appears in our publications or web site, then that simply shows how devious we are.

You just can't win that kind of game.

When Michael Hill points out the disproportionate number of crimes committed by a "compliant and deadly underclass," that's pounced upon as an expression of "raw anger." But how different was Hill's observation from what liberal Senator Pat Moynihan wrote about black crime? Here are a couple of excerpts from Moynihan's famous report:

In a word, most Negro youth are in danger of being caught up in the tangle of pathology that affects their world, and probably a majority are so entrapped. ...

There is no one Negro problem. There is no one solution. Nonetheless, at the center of the tangle of pathology is the weakness of the family structure. Once or twice removed, it will be found to be the principal source of most of the aberrant, inadequate, or antisocial behavior that did not establish, but now serves to perpetuate the cycle of poverty and deprivation.

But Moynihan's unflinching examination at the "pathology" of urban blacks took place in a time before name-calling replaced fact-based argument in public discourse. We all know what would be howled at him if he were alive today making the same observations.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Palestinians Block Fuel, Create Humanitarian Crisis In Gaza

That's what they say:

It should be noted that Israel is not involved or responsible for occurrences in the Gaza Strip, for vehicular traffic on the highways, or for entrance to the organization’s depot.

In other news: old woman sued for bruising the knuckles of a mugger with her jaw.

How the West Was Changed

How was it the portrayal of Anglo-Celts in the movies changed around 1950? Here's a fascinating answer:

Before the Second World War, American Westerns presented what later came to be seen as a "naive" view of what might be called white borderer culture and conflicts. The "good" of the Scots-Irish based and European immigrant and settler population was not just an underlying assumption but a central and explicit thesis in the Westerns, most of which were made by “poverty row” studios and distributed to rural and small-town theaters—and seen by the grandchildren of the very people portrayed.

As James Webb wrote in Born Fighting, the Scots-Irish are "family-oriented, take morality seriously, go to church, join the US military, support America’s wars, and listen to country music." In other words, we're the heart and body of America. But around 1950, Hollywood decided it didn't like those qualities and started presenting us differently. One notable example:

Why, for example, was a cultural split added to The Magnificent Seven (John Sturgis, 1960), the Hollywood remake of Shichinin no samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954)? In the original, the townspeople are simply poor and oppressed; they share a cultural background with the samurai they hire to protect them as well as with the people who are expected to see the film. In the remake the townspeople are alien—to their protectors and to most of their intended audience. Why? Why make it a Mexican town in need of protection by Americans?

Simple, says the author -- the Hollywood elite, angered by Middle America's rallying around Joe McCarthy -- had declared war on the white middle class:

... small-town Americans had fallen out of favor by 1960, out of favor with the “New York and Hollywood elite” (whose negative attitude continues today, with some calling the rest of the country the “flyover”). Filmmakers could no longer see a way of making the white townsfolk seem worthy of protection without being accused of a naïve and, eventually, racist viewpoint.

Then came other portrayals of Anglo-Celts as evil, such as "Easy Rider," "To Kill a Mockingbird," and "Monster Ball." Today, even immigrants from India notice that Southern accents are reserved for the bad guys in American movies. That's how the Left Coast views us.

Iraq's gift to Latin America

Here's an interesting observation. All those anti-US, leftist, and pro-indigenous political movements taking root in Latin America would never have been allowed to grow if the US wasn't bogged down in the Neocon Wars. As the author points out, the US has a bloody history of repeated intervention there, starting with Teddy Roosevelt's "taking" of Panama:

In the decades that followed, the United States sponsored dictatorships from Cuba to Brazil, deposed governments from Chile to Guatemala, landed Marines on shores from Panama to Haiti, and thwarted the election of independent-minded leaders from Guyana to the Dominican Republic. Generations of Latin Americans grew up understanding that any challenge to US hegemony in the hemisphere would be crushed swiftly and with all necessary violence.

That has now changed so decisively that this week, President Rafael Correa of Ecuador felt moved to predict the emergence of a "socialist Latin America".

Makes sense. US intervention in the Middle East produced Bin Laden, as US intervention in Latin America has given us Hugo Chavez. Now we get to see what happens when angry Latinos grab at a chance for a little payback.

Oh to be in England ...

... now that devolution's there ...

But here's one commentator who isn't happy that old empires are being replaced by human-scaled political formations. As the super-sized nation-state totters and reels, historical cultural affinities are spontaneously reviving themselves:

In its place comes a vast phalanx of somewhat ill-defined racial types, clamouring for recognition — from Catalonia, the Basque region, Flanders and the two Galicias, from Transylvania, from Friesland, Brittany, Wales, Scotland and Ireland, ad infinitum.

The author, Rod Liddle, tries to delegitimize the revival of historical identities as "tribal stuff" which he dismisses as "the most atavistic and baseless of principles." But why, if identification with one's extended family is baseless, has it defined human history so profoundly, and, more important, why does it continue to shape current events (including today's never-ending presidential campaign)?

Mr. Liddle indulges in the nihilism and extreme sceptisicm that multicult/globalists often resort to in claiming that races don't exist because, so they claim, it's impossible to put anything into a category -- especially people:

Which brings us to what is meant by ‘English’, that race represented by a patron saint from Cappadocia or maybe Palestine, which converses in a modern derivative of low German, was created by an invasion from France and whose gene pool is hopelessly mingled with that of our Celtic neighbours and that of any number of influxes from France, from the Jewish diaspora, from Africa, Asia and the Caribbean.

This kind of thinking can be shot down with but a whiff o' logic. Aristotle's categories are just as appropriate for human categories as they are for anything else. Folks like Mr. Biddle assume that an other-worldly ideal must be the starting point for any system of knowledge; since all attempts to pack reality into those ideals fail, then knowledge is impossible.

Pshaw! Let's instead work with what's real and build our ideas around that. A nation, just like an individual, arises from a whirlwind of apparently disparate and accidental causes. What's more, both nation and individual never stop adapting. That's the real world philosophical idealists can't explain, and therefore dismiss as not quite real. However, Aristotle's categories of substance, relation, place, and time correpond well with our understanding of genetic history, family ties, nationality, and history. Richard Weaver provided one of the best explanations of how categories are essential to human knowledge. In his essay, Status and Function, he wrote:

... we see things maintaining their identity while changing. Things both are and are becoming. They are because the idea or general configuration of them persists; and they are becoming because with the flowing of time, they inevitably slough off old substance and take on new. The paradox of both being and becoming is thus continuously enacted. We say that there is a "nature of things," but this nature ever appears in a changing embodiment, so that if we attended only to the latter, we should no sooner say of a thing that "it is" than we should be obliged to say "it was" or "it is now something else." It is an ancient observation that "no man steps in the same river twice," yet we continue to conceive it as a river and to call it by one name. At one and the same moment permanence holds us enchanted and change urges us on. Visions of Order, p. 23.

Existence, argues Weaver, is identified by both status and function, that is, by what a person or thing is and what he or it does. There is something essential that lives on despite the changes a thing, person, or culture experiences. The same applies to nations, says Weaver:

The same process is visible even when we look at the political state. It persists under one name, and it may even affirm in its organic law that it is indestructible. But its old leaders pass on or are removed, and new ones appear. But while these individual particles are being shuffled and replaced, "the state" goes on, maintaining some character and identity through all these changes. The most conservative state must yield something to the pressure of historical increment, and the most "progressive" one conserves something that it considers its special form and spirit." Visions of Order, p. 24

With that in mind, notice that Mr. Liddle eventually stumbles upon the answer to his own objections:

But when I examine precisely what it is to which I feel allegiance, I find that it is that bleak and discredited notion, the nation state: Great Britain. It is Britain, not England, with which I feel a shared identity and, try as I might, I cannot separate the southern province from the rest simply because we say ‘now’ instead of ‘noo’ or ‘noy’ ...

And isn't that the whole point? We're in an age of redefining who we are. When I was younger, it was the Free World vs. the Soviet Bloc. "We" included Americans, Danes, and others, such as Vietnamese south of the 17th parallel, while "they" were Russians, Chinese, and Vietnamese north of the 17th parallel. Despite the "universalism" of their Marxist-Leninist ideology, ancient loyalties split the Russians and Chinese and united the Vietnamese.

The massive influx of legal and illegal immigrants from Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean that Liddle tries to list as just one more component of British identity is actually corrosive to it. That's why floodtide immigration is simultaneously dissolving the idea of "Britishness" while focusing attention on the actual and historical meaning of "Englishness."

Meanwhile, in the last days of the republic once known as "America" ...

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

An entire village turns against supermarkets

And finds something much better ...


This article shows what happens when a village decides to revive its local economy, eat locally, and work together to re-build a local economy and community.

Surprise! They also find that they feel like they belong to something.

Why can't WE do the same thing? Franklin Sanders

With gas and food skyrocketing beyond reach, this is looking more and more like the future. And no more plastic food!

Neocons and Hillary sittin' in a tree

Gee, just one little speech promising to commit genocide against Muslims, and the Neocons fall head-over-heels in love with you:

Hillary Clinton's got the momentum.

She's already put up big campaign fundraising numbers in the follow-up to her victory, and we should expect to see a Clinton bump in public opinion in states holding upcoming primaries, especially Indiana, the next crucial test for Obama's working-class appeal.

This Bud's for you, Hillraiser!

She had him at "obliterate."

Clinton vs. Obama

Wait for Bill Clinton at 2:30 into the video: "Get up, Sweetie!"



Sadly, she cannot. When Umaga storms in to dispose of the unchivalrous Obama, Hillary appears to have found her champion. But just like Robert Reich and Bill Richardson, a supposed ally turns against her.

And they say wrestling is fake.

Gen. David Petraeus to be next commander of U.S. Central Command

It pays to tell your boss what he wants to hear.

Some peasants are more equal than others

Rep. Peter King of New York on Southern congressmen:

"... they are typical of the South - a union-hating, ignorant, hillbilly, revival-meeting attending bunch that represents everything un-American."

Rep. Douglas Bruce, on legislation to allow more illegal alien invaders into Colorado:

"I would like to have the opportunity to state at the microphone why I don't think we need 5,000 more illiterate peasants in Colorado."

One of these elected officials was booted from the podium for his remarks. The other was met by laughter. Can you guess which is which?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The International Symbol of Political Independence

Certainly not the DC flag. From Tom DiLorenzo, via LewRockwell.com

I'm in Prague this week lecturing at the Prague University of Economics and attending (last weekend) the Prague Conference on Political Economy. My host (Professor Josef Sima) picked me up at the airport and as soon as we got into the city one of the first sights that caught my eye was a large black pickup truck with a Confederate battle flag covering the entire back window. It is most likely a remnant of the successful, peaceful secession of Slovakia from Czechoslovakia in 1993, creating the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Having looked up the history of this peaceful secession on the internet I learned that the old Czechoslovakian government did not have sufficient coercive force --and the will to mass murder its own people -- in order to stop it. Not that there weren't Czecho-Lincolnites in the government who wanted to.

Thank God for the Czechs and Slovaks that they did not have a Lincoln who would have slaughtered them all by the thousands while wrapping his war crimes in religious rhetoric.

Closing the 'Collapse Gap'

Prepare to have your illusions of security shattered. This is the most jarring, as well as the most important, article I've seen in years, and readers of this blog will know I don't toss such claims lightly.

Here's the thesis: All empires fail. The Soviet Union was better positioned to fail than the United States, which has almost zero resources to rely on when systemic failure hits.

Why? The Soviet Union's economic system didn't work that well even in the best of times. As a result, the people had to build close relations within their communities to assist each other and barter for food and services. On the other hand, our money-based system depends absolutely on the Federal Reserve. Most Soviets kept "kitchen gardens" to supplement their food supply during lean times, which saved millions after the teetering Soviet economy finally collapsed. We, however, are totally dependent on a centralized food distribution system. The Soviet people knew how to fix things, something this disposable society not only lacks, but scoffs at. People were fitter, both mentally and physically, and thus, better able to adapt.

The Soviet Union was organized in ethnically based republics, and the Soviet Constitution recognized the right of secession -- something our people believe was "settled" by Lincoln's brutal invasion. Therefore, an orderly method of re-organizing already existed in the Soviet Union.

This quote on the difference between how each regime handled dissent is priceless:

It is certainly more fun to watch two Capitalist parties go at each other than just having the one Communist party to vote for. The things they fight over in public are generally symbolic little tokens of social policy, chosen for ease of public posturing. The Communist party offered just one bitter pill. The two Capitalist parties offer a choice of two placebos. The latest innovation is the photo finish election, where each party buys 50% of the vote, and the result is pulled out of statistical noise, like a rabbit out of a hat.

The American way of dealing with dissent and with protest is certainly more advanced: why imprison dissidents when you can just let them shout into the wind to their heart's content?

Ouch.

My favorite quote, in a section recommending what individuals can do to free themselves from the harmful control of national politicians:

Alexander Solzhenitsyn (who won the Nobel Prize in Literature) developed a handy saying that helped him survive the Gulag. It may help you too: "Don't believe them, don't fear them, don't ask anything of them."

Read this article. And get to work. Now.

Food Or Immigrants? That’s America’s Choice On Earth Day 2008

The mortgage crisis, the assault on our traditional liberties, the floodtide of illegal alien invaders, rising gas prices, an international food shortage -- all of these problems are either caused or worsened by DC's self-serving agenda -- and completely against the will of the people. Brenda Walker of VDare explores how DC's de facto Open Borders policies are wrecking our environment:

In fact, although the environmentalist establishment ducks the immigration issue, responsible environmentalists who are honest about the overpopulation crisis are among the toughest critics of open borders. The word "zero" rolls from their lips far more often than among other groups. Conservationists who look at the numbers grasp that a hundred thousand newcomers today rapidly expand to a million because of children and America's family-based immigration policies are a Ponzi scheme from Hell.

Skyrocketing food prices and looming shortages are a symptom that America is full up.

Central banking is the enemy

Michael S. Rozeff explains why, and provides a good introduction to how the Fed is set up. Here's his summary of the problems it causes and how those problems result directly from the Fed itself:

Our current banking system has, from the viewpoint of the general public, three main ills. The first of these is that it produces economic instability, that is, a boom-bust cycle or expansion and recession (or depression). The second, which is related to the first, is that it produces a continuing loss in purchasing power of the dollar. Third is that the banking system provides support to ill-conceived and destructive spending policies of the State. These three ills retard a normal course of economic expansion and impoverish many persons in our country in a most unjust way.

Four separate elements are responsible for these failings of the banking system. One is that banks promise that demand deposits will be paid out on demand, but they cannot possibly meet this requirement for all depositors because they lend out the deposits. Furthermore, their lending results in a multiplied total of further deposits and further loans. Second is that the money used in these deposits is fiat money, that is, money declared to be money that has no sound backing or perceived intrinsic worth. Third is that the money in the banking system has been made legal tender by State law. This means that it must be accepted as a payment medium. Fourth is that deposits are insured by a State agency, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Consider why Andrew Jackson fought the central bank:

- It concentrated an excessive amount of the nation's financial strength in a single institution.
- It exposed the government to control by foreign interests.
- It served mainly to make the rich richer.
- It exercised too much control over members of Congress.
- It favored northeastern states over southern and western states.

Was he right? Today, Communist China holds over a half-trillion in Treasury bills. Big business has gobbled up family farms. As Rozeff explains, the New York banks run the system.

Where's Old Hickory when we need him?

Why Wall Street Socialism will fail

As the Bear Stearns bailout proves once again, we have socialism for the rich and laissez-faire for the poor. But, as Kevin Phillips reminds us, socialism is just as self-destructive here as it was elsewhere. It eroded the Soviet Union from within until it collapsed like an old house hollowed by termites. Wall Street socialism is heading down the same road:

Socialism, we are told, is the naiveté of youth, and a fallacious economics the United States has luckily spurned.

Alas, nobody ever told the leaders of American finance. Whereas the old style of socialism elected no more than a handful of mayors and congressmen, Washington has now embraced a new variety that could not be more different in its class consciousness and privileged sponsorship.

To keep the people quiet and subservient, this new flavor of socialism was sold to them as the essense of American free enterprise:

Ex-Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan is often singled out as a culprit, but most of what he did was what most of the financial sector wanted. They, too, loved making 4th of July speeches about the glories of free enterprise and free -- market profits while counting on the government to collectivize the perils of risk. Big, fat and dumb financial institutions could count on being big, fat and bailed-out.

Phillips' argument is that by subsidizing and insulating the big and the fat, we're interfering with the market's organic system of identifying and eliminating unwise actions -- that is, we've hobbled the system by making it failure-proof for selected players. Look again at the Bear Stearns example. These people risk our pension and money-market funds, and when they make a killing, they enjoy all the rewards. But when they screw up, as they have spectacularly done lately, our tax dollars are pumped into their accounts to save them from their own mistakes.

It's not just bail-outs like this that subsidize big business. Both Hillary and Obama support socialized medicine, which will eliminate corporations from having to provide health benefits. The effect, of course, would be to shift these corporate costs to taxpayers.

Clinton on an Iran Attack: 'Obliterate Them'

Who says Hillary is just another DC insider who's going to prop up the military/industrial regime? Hillary:

Clinton further displayed tough talk in an interview airing on "Good Morning America" Tuesday. ABC News' Chris Cuomo asked Clinton what she would do if Iran attacked Israel with nuclear weapons.

"I want the Iranians to know that if I'm the president, we will attack Iran," Clinton said. "In the next 10 years, during which they might foolishly consider launching an attack on Israel, we would be able to totally obliterate them."

It's a good thing the United States won the Cold War. Otherwise, the Soviet Union would've imposed totalitarianism on us, and every election would offer nothing but fake choices between pro-government candidates.

By the way, this makes the second presidential candidate to endorse the Krauthammer Doctrine. And we can count on McCain to nuke Iran no matter what they do.

War is a racket

If you can't convince your children not to join the Empire's legions, then insist they read General Smedley Butler's book:

In my opinion, no young person who cannot intelligently discuss General Butler’s book, "War Is A Racket," should be permitted to join any of the armed forces. I would further insist that all military personnel be schooled in "War Crimes Avoidance." This would primarily be centered on teaching the difference between lawful and unlawful orders and lawful and unlawful wars. Most military personnel do not consciously think about this until perhaps after their service – or never – according to Smedley Butler. They just follow orders. That is why Michael New is such an anomaly.

Food Rationing Confronts Breadbasket of the World

Food shortages -- they're not just for Third World countries anymore. Now, angry customers scrounge through stores in places like New York and California:

Many parts of America, long considered the breadbasket of the world, are now confronting a once unthinkable phenomenon: food rationing. Major retailers in New York, in areas of New England, and on the West Coast are limiting purchases of flour, rice, and cooking oil as demand outstrips supply. There are also anecdotal reports that some consumers are hoarding grain stocks.

Makes the idea of supporting local farmers seem a little less silly, doesn't it?

Monday, April 21, 2008

U.S. media deceitfully disseminates government propaganda

As this article proves, old soldiers never die -- they just go on TV to sell the next war.

Forget Bin Laden -- what will Hillary do about the UDC?

We've got a home mortgage crisis, the price of oil is going through the roof, the war in Iraq is bankrupting and bleeding us dry -- but what is candidate Hillary Clinton going to do about the United Daughters of the Confederacy? BlackCommentator demands an answer in an "investigative report" entitled -- hold on to your hats -- "Senator Hillary Clinton Must Explain The Praising of a Group of KKK Supporters."

In a year of political absurdities, where one candidate--Senator Obama--is being held accountable for his friends and acquaintances and everything that they have said and done during their life times, we have stumbled across a problem.

Right -- there's only one thing to do when you're stuck in a year of political absurdities, and that's to go even further over the top:

BlackCommentator.com has learned that Bill Clinton, while president, repeatedly praised the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC). This is an organization that many, including some whites and a former U.S. senator from Illinois, have called racist.

Uh-huh. BlackCommentator was just sitting in his headquarters, minding his own business, when he suddenly stumbled over the sinister truth about the UDC. Maybe the cat brought it in.

And did you catch that perfect use of weasel words? Of course, the SPLC has mastered the art of using deliberately deceptive terms that appear to offer something of substance when there's actually nothing there, but BlackCommentator has clearly been taking good notes. For those of you not familiar with the term, here's where it came from:

The expression "weasel word" is aptly named after the egg-eating habits of weasels. A weasel will suck out the inside of an egg, leaving it appear intact to the casual observer. Upon examination, the egg is discovered to be hollow. Words or claims that appear substantial upon first look but disintegrate into hollow meaninglessness on analysis are weasels.

So what is it that "many, including some whites" think about this shadowy organization? Take a deep breath before you read this:

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups, the UDC is a neo-Confederate organization which is affiliated with such white supremacist groups as the Council of Conservative Citizens and the League of the South. Formed in 1894, the UDC limits its membership to women who are related to Confederate veterans of the “War Between the States.”

Oh, the horror. This country actually allows ladies to keep alive the memory of their ancestors? They're allowed to run loose despite a Southern Poverty Law Center fatwa against them and their eeeeevil friends?

The weird thing here is that BlackCommentator is demanding that Hillary come clean on her relationship to the UDC, and announce if she will "continue the tradition of support and praise of the United Daughters of the Confederacy." But it turns out Hillary has apparently had no contact with the UDC, nor has she even uttered a single word about them, pro or con. The only proof offered is this harmless note Bill Clinton sent to the UDC on its 100th anniversary:

The White House

Washington

June 21, 1994

I am delighted to honor the United Daughters of the Confederacy as you celebrate your 100th anniversary.

One of the most rewarding of human experiences is the coming together of people to share common experiences and interests. For 100 years, the United Daughters of the Confederacy has maintained and built upon the wonderful legacy of your founders. The strength of your organization today is a testament of the vision of your founders and to your commitment to your shared goals.

I congratulate you on your achievement, and I extend best wishes for many years of continuing success.

Bill Clinton

That's it? That note was hardly the foundation for a "tradition of support and praise of the United Daughters of the Confederacy." It's not like Bill gave them the keys to the US treasury or called out the Green Berets to run covert ops for them. The note was merely a social nicety, an empty gesture.

And since when did recycling unfounded assertions from the SPLC's web site qualify as "investigative reporting"?

But that's just the kind of thing that happens when you're in a year of political absurdities.

Free the Jefferson 1!

Looks like celebrating Thomas Jefferson's birthday in Imperial America is as risky as celebrating the Dalai Lama's birthday in Communist China.

Condi's conundrum

There's no political humor quite like unintentional political humor. And America's First Spinster has provided plenty. Her latest:

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived in Baghdad's Green Zone on Sunday on a surprise visit to Iraq where she said she saw improved security and political grouping in the centre which should attract Arab support and blunt Iran's influence.

If security is so much better, why was it a surprise visit? Why didn't she strut around Baghdad like the president of Iran did in early March? And just where was evidence of all that so-called improved security? Nicholas Kristof suggests why Condi saw what she thinks she saw -- it's all a matter of keeping those blinders on, blinders we're all guilty of using while denying it. They filter out impressions that clash with our biases, and allow in whatever seems to confirm them:

...consider the Dartmouth-Princeton football game in 1951. That bitterly fought contest was the subject of a landmark study about how our biases shape our understanding of reality.

Psychologists showed a film clip of the football game to groups of students at each college and asked them to act as unbiased referees and note every instance of cheating. The results were striking. Each group, watching the same clip, was convinced that the other side had cheated worse - and this was not deliberate bias or just for show.

"Their eyes were taking in the same game, but their brains seemed to be processing the events in two distinct ways," Farhad Manjoo writes in his terrific new book, True Enough: Learning to Live in a Post-Fact Society. It's the best political book so far this year.

So what's the reality? Are there undeniable facts Condi and other war supporters fail to acknowledge? For example, maybe it was noises she didn't want to hear:

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, meanwhile, assured visiting Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice that he will not back down in his confrontation with Shiite militias, even as mortar shells fired from Shiite areas struck the U.S.-protected Green Zone.

Maybe she thought the noise was construction work on the "Grand Square of the Liberator George W. Bush" that grateful Iraqis were working on, as predicted by the ever-prescient Richard Perle:

And a year from now, I'll be very surprised if there is not some grand square in Baghdad that is named after President Bush. There is no doubt that, with the exception of a very small number of people close to a vicious regime, the people of Iraq have been liberated and they understand that they've been liberated. And it is getting easier every day for Iraqis to express that sense of liberation.
Richard Perle, September 22, 2003

Or maybe not.

But what a hoot to see Condi take a jab at al-Sadr, even to the point of goading him to make good on his threat to break his truce. It reminds me of Bush's reckless taunt to the then-incipient insurgency to "bring it on" if they wanted to attack US troops. They brought it, all right. But Condi's dig at this dangerous and unpredictable man simply hits a new level of official stupidity:

"I know he's sitting in Iran," Rice said dismissively, when asked about al-Sadr's latest threat to lift a self-imposed cease-fire with government and U.S. forces. "I guess it's all-out war for anybody but him," Rice said. "I guess that's the message; his followers can go too their deaths and he's in Iran."

Yeah, Condi. Whatever. Unlike our Great Liberator, who's up at the front daily with the men he sends into a no-win war:

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Fun fact of the day

On North Carolina voter registration forms (and maybe on your state's forms, too) there's a section for the citizen's race and ethnic group. Under race, you can choose any of the standard choices, including bi-racial. But there are only two valid ethnic selections, "Hispanic/Latino" and "non-Hispanic/Latino."

The Anti-Hijacking Safety Bracelet

Here's another reason not to fly:

A Canadian company called Lamperd Less Lethal is promoting the EMD Safety Bracelet. It's equipped with electro muscular disruption technology, which effectively short-circuits the central nervous system. Zap someone and they'll be completely immobile for several minutes.

The technology isn't new -- cops and security guards have been using it for years in tasers. What's new is the marketing approach. Lamperd is hawking the EMD bracelet as the ideal tool for fighting terrorists intent on taking over an airplane.

So -- how long until these bracelets become mandatory for all US citizens? After all, if you're not a terrorist, you have nothing to fear from your government.

Three States Subjected To "Martial Law Sweeps"

All in the name of keeping us safe:

Federal law enforcement agencies co-opted sheriffs offices as well state and local police forces in three states last weekend for a vast round up operation that one sheriff's deputy has described as "martial law training".

Law-enforcement agencies in Tennessee, Mississippi and Arkansas took part in what was described by local media as "an anti-crime and anti-terrorism initiative" involving officers from more than 50 federal, state and local agencies.

For those shivering under their beds where the Islamomeanies can't hurt them, take a moment to consider what's the real threat here, terrorism or uncontrolled government power? As we wrote earlier, the terror threat is wildly exaggerated:

"...the total number of people killed worldwide by genuine al-Qaeda types and assorted wannabes outside of war zones since 9/11 averages about 300 per year. That is certainly 300 a year too many, but that number is smaller than the yearly number of bathtub drownings in the United States.

Here's what scares me: the very real threat of "pre-emptive" arrests and mass round-ups -- which this latest Federal exercise seems to be rehearsing for:

While some business owners feel they are being targeted, law-enforcement officers said they are just trying to track down possible terrorists before something big happens.

"What we have found traditionally is that terrorists are involved in a number of lesser known type crimes," said Mark Luttrell, Shelby County sheriff.

Oh, as long as these militarized law-enforcement officers are "just trying to track down" bad guys, I guess it's all ok.

Meanwhile, the number of immigrants from the Middle East, legal and illegal, is expected to double by 2010. Remember, with government, solutions are not the answer. More power for our rulers is the answer to every problem.

Confederate Pope

Actually, the Vatican was the only country to officially recognize the Confederacy, although the British built us some great commerce raiders like the CSS Alabama, Florida, and Shenandoah.

Just in case anyone hasn't seen this:



It is the Mississippi State Flag. Thanks to Mike Scruggs for forwarding!

Pope Pius IX was well known for his connections to the Confederacy. From Wikipedia:

During Confederate President Jefferson Davis’ imprisonment following the defeat of the Confederacy, Pope Pius IX sent a picture of himself to Davis with the hand-written inscription: “Come unto me, all ye who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Along with this picture, the pope sent a miniature crown of thorns which he had woven with his own hands. Such a gift, said a great niece, was “never before conferred on any but crowned heads.” Robert E. Lee, pointing to his own portrait of Pius IX whistling Dixie, told a visitor that he was “the only sovereign…in Europe who recognized our poor Confederacy.”

Also worth noting is Judah Benjamin's and Jefferson Davis' correspondence to Pope Pius IX during the War for Southern Independence. This letter from President Davis of September 23, 1863, is especially moving:

Most Venerable Chief of the Holy See and Sovereign Pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church,

The letters which your Holiness addressed to the venerable chiefs of the Catholic clergy in New Orleans and New York have been brought to my attention, and I have read with emotion the terms in which you are pleased to express the deep sorrow with which you regard the slaughter, ruin, and devastation consequent on the war now waged by the Government of the United States against the States and people over which I have been chosen to preside, and in which you direct them, and the clergy under their authority, to exhort the people and the rulers to the exercise of mutual charity and the love of peace. I as deeply sensible of the Christian charity and sympathy with which your Holiness has twice appealed to the venerable clergy of your church, urging them to use and apply all study and exertion for the restoration of peace and tranquillity.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Amid blasts, Baghdad embassy declared ready

The Imperial Battle Station is now operational. And if it cost a tad more than planned, well, as Madeleine Albright would say, "It was worth it." Behold:

Originally expected to be completed by last July 1 at a cost of $592 million, the largest U.S. diplomatic mission in the world has been plagued by disputes over workmanship and design changes that have increased costs by at least $144 million.

One of the problems getting everything completed on time were the cultural conflicts between the State Department and the Iraqi construction company in charge of building the fortress within a fortress. But lately, the workers have responded well to an innovative form of motivation I never thought of when I was a project manager:

One State Department official said the rocket attacks helped focus attention. "People were very motivated to hurry up and get out of there," he said.

When employee motivation pioneer Abraham Maslow urged managers to factor in the security needs of employees, I don't think he considered the motivational effect of 107mm rockets.

Actually, the Death Star imagery perfectly illustrates the mindset of DC's ruling elite. An enlightened vanguard, attempting to uplift and reform a backward people, is besieged by retrograde forces resisting progress. The mirror image of that is how the occupied people see the giant embassy, and that is as a hostile, alien force determined to subjugate them.

Kinda like the way DC is increasingly regarded over here.

Iraq war 'a debacle'

Who wrote that? Code Pink? One of those unpatriotic conservatives? No -- this was the conclusion of some new defeatist, pro-Islamomeanie organization that calls itself, "The Pentagon."

The war in Iraq has become "a major debacle" and the outcome "is in doubt" despite improvements in security from the buildup in U.S. forces, according to a highly critical study published Thursday by the Pentagon's premier military educational institute.

The report released by the National Defense University raises fresh doubts about President Bush 's projections of a U.S. victory in Iraq just a week after Bush announced that he was suspending U.S. troop reductions.

The report goes on to say that the harm done to our soldiers, their families, our economy, and our long-term security is undeniable, and likely greater than we can measure:

"Measured in blood and treasure, the war in Iraq has achieved the status of a major war and a major debacle," says the report's opening line.

At the time the report was written last fall, more than 4,000 U.S. and foreign troops, more than 7,500 Iraqi security forces and as many as 82,000 Iraqi civilians had been killed and tens of thousands of others wounded, while the cost of the war since March 2003 was estimated at $450 billion .

"No one as yet has calculated the costs of long-term veterans' benefits or the total impact on service personnel and materiel," wrote Collins, who was involved in planning post-invasion humanitarian operations.

The report said that the United States has suffered serious political costs, with its standing in the world seriously diminished. Moreover, operations in Iraq have diverted "manpower, materiel and the attention of decision-makers" from "all other efforts in the war on terror" and severely strained the U.S. armed forces.

"Compounding all of these problems, our efforts there (in Iraq ) were designed to enhance U.S. national security, but they have become, at least temporarily, an incubator for terrorism and have emboldened Iran to expand its influence throughout the Middle East ," the report continued.

So what's more important here -- the good of our people, our legal traditions, and our reputation, or the egos of a few swaggering would-be chicken hawks?

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Slavery: Paper Tiger of the Politically Correct

Here's a great anti-venom for those who've been bitten by the PC viper. Victims ignore the notorious sweat shops of the North and imagine that the slaves of the Old South endured Roots-style whippings every day. This introduction to the real story by Al Benson, Jr. should help.

Italy's Northern League resurgent

One of the political movements that inspired the formation of the present-day League of the South has barreled back onto the Italian political scene:

Italy's centre-right leader Silvio Berlusconi won a return to power this week with a majority that - by Italian standards - looks very comfortable.

But he did so with the help of a formerly troublesome and often controversial right-wing ally, the Northern League.

The populist party almost doubled its vote, winning more than 8% nationally, and is expected to have several ministers in the new government.

Its appeal has only intensified since the outgoing Socialist coalition came to power -- and no wonder:

The League's campaign focused on what it sees as the waste, inefficiency and corruption of the political class in Rome.

That has always been a rallying call for the party, which became a significant force in the wake of the corruption scandals of the early 1990s as it attacked "robber Rome".

Sounds familiar, doesn't it? I suppose all political classes are alike.

Obama would do 'everything' to help Israel defend itself

Looks like Charles Krauthammer has at least one presidential candidate willing to sign on to the "Israel First" doctrine. And Obama is touted as the peace candidate? Surprisingly, yes -- by people who should know better.

Obama's promise to get the US mired down in even more unnecessary, open-ended conflict in the Middle East could've been made by Bush, Cheney, or any other Neocon:

"As president, I will do everything that I can to help (Israel) protect itself ... We will make sure that it can defend itself from any attack, whether it comes from as close as Gaza or as far as Tehran," Obama told a synagogue in Philadelphia, according to his campaign aides.

He said US-Israeli cooperation, although successful, "can be deepened and strengthened."

Whatever glorious "change" Obama intends to bring us apparently doesn't extend into DC's belligerent foreign policy. But here's what really gets me:

Robert Wexler, Florida Democrat in the House of Representatives, told reporters after the meeting that Obama "unequivocally rejects the Palestinian right of return" -- a perennial sticking point in Palestinian-Israeli peace talks -- because he understands that Israel must remain a Jewish state.

And they have every right to protect and preserve the ethnic makeup of their country -- but why is it considered perfectly natural for them to reject colonization, and not us? When we express similar goals, we're branded as "xenophobes."

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The Last Days of Cheap Chinese

Don't look now, but that miraculous global economy is about to bite you:

The era of cheap Chinese consumer goods may finally be ending, thanks to irrepressible inflation. Now when the Chinese present their lists, some American importers are conceding higher prices, meaning that American shoppers, for the first time in years, are starting to pick up the tab for rising costs in China. Some Chinese factories are now asking their American customers for price increases of as much as 20 percent to 30 percent.


Think of it as receiving the bill for some of those hidden costs of saving money at Wal-Mar. And yes, more is on the way.

No country for old warmongers

And he should know:

Democratic Rep. John Murtha said Wednesday that Republican Sen. John McCain is too old to be president.

Murtha is 75, four years older than McCain. He says they are nearly the same age, and the rigors and stress of running the country is too much for guys their age.

"I've served with seven presidents," Murtha told a union audience. "When they come in, they all make mistakes. They all get older."

"This one guy running is about as old as me," he said, drawing laughter and applause. "Let me tell you something, it's no old man's job."

The unsinkable Obama

Everyone who's been wondering what political damage would result from Obama's slip about the "bitter" white working class may be in for a shock:

With three crucial Democratic primaries looming, Hillary Rodham Clinton may not be headed toward the blockbuster victories she needs to jump-start her presidential bid -- even in Pennsylvania, the state that was supposed to be her ace in the hole, a new Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll has found.

The survey found the New York senator leading Barack Obama by 5 percentage points in Pennsylvania, which votes next Tuesday. Such a margin would not give her much of a boost in the battle for the party's nomination.

This shrink explains why.

If he manages to win despite "Bittergate," then Obama's way beyond Ronald Reagan's Teflon. He must have Captain Kirk's long-range shields to protect him.

The Martial Law Act of 2006

Here's something for all you heel-clickers out there to chew on:

Martial law is perhaps the ultimate stomping of freedom. And yet, on September 30, 2006, Congress passed a provision in a 591-page bill that will make it easy for President Bush to impose martial law in response to a terrorist “incident.” It also empowers him to effectively declare martial law in response to what he or other federal officials label a shortfall of “public order” – whatever that means.

As the author, James Bovard, points out, martial law means military dictatorship. And as he reminds us, the abuses suffered under military dictatorship here in the South, which is sugar-coated as "Reconstruction," should keep us alert to the dangers of repeating such a tragedy.

And as we've pointed out before, the Beltway is completely behind this, illustrating once again that the only separation of powers left in this country is between DC, which has all the power, and the people:

Section 1076 had bipartisan support on Capitol Hill, including support from Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), Sen. John Warner (R-Va.), Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.), and Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. Since the law would give the feds more power, it was very popular inside the Beltway.

How long have you been a Nazi?

Welcome to the Anti-Nuance Age.

We've shed the need or desire to see things in context. Whatever the topic, whether we're considering an individual or a policy, the background of the subject does not matter. So Obama's claims that he'll accomplish wondrous things for America do not require we ask what experience he's had in actually doing such things. (As a matter of fact, demanding proof would be regarded as bad taste, and maybe even racist.) The ultimate response to such doubt is: "Don't you want to heal the divisions in this country?" Unless you answer "Why,yes!", then you've branded yourself as a hater of tolerance and all other sacred things.

President Bush both illustrated and legitimized this current method of reasoning when he announced, "You are either with us, or you are with the terrorists."

This way of thinking and debating has been used most effectively by our very own Tolerance Terrorists (who are good terrorists, like Menachem Begin and Nelson Mandela), who make their fortune by bullying the easily intimidated into silence with accusations they're really Nazis. Such mercenary idealists as Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton come to mind, but the grandmasters of this technique are, of course, those dedicated souls at the Southern Poverty Law Center. Jesse and Al only bully their victims out of their lunch money; the SPLC keeps its eyes on bigger prizes, including political power to go along with its wealth. Observe how the SPLC handles those who agree with Pat Buchanan about stopping the flow of illegal immigration in a hit piece cleverly entitled, Selling Racism:

To put it plainly, State of Emergency is a white nationalist tract. The thesis is that America must retain a white majority to survive as a nation. It is rooted in a blood-and-soil nationalism more blood than soil. The echoes of Nazi ideology are clear and chilling.

Didn't I tell you they were good? If you support enforcing existing Federal border laws, you're a Nazi. No middle ground will be recognized. No debate is allowed. To suggest either instantly and permanently brands you.

And here's Charles Krauthammer demonstrating (and clearly aggravating) the black/white mindset that dictates political discourse today:

President Bush should issue the following declaration, adopting Kennedy's language while changing the names of the miscreants:

It shall be the policy of this nation to regard any nuclear attack upon Israel by Iran, or originating in Iran, as an attack by Iran on the United States, requiring a full retaliatory response upon Iran.

This should be followed with a simple explanation: "As a beacon of tolerance and as leader of the free world, the United States will not permit a second Holocaust to be perpetrated upon the Jewish people."

This policy -- the Holocaust Declaration -- would establish a firm benchmark that would outlive this administration. Every future president -- and every serious presidential candidate -- would have to publicly state whether or not he supports the Holocaust Declaration.

What a great idea. All future presidential candidates will have to announce whether or not they oppose the Holocaust. I wonder how they'll answer?

As political intimidation goes, we must acknowledge that we are in the presence of greatness here. The policy he's pushing is that the US should dedicate its entire treasury and life-blood to the nation of Israel. Notice that Israel isn't even committed to sending so much as a thank-you note in return, much less assist the US if it's attacked. If you do not agree with this policy, then you're a -- well, you know what you are. And so will everyone else.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Food Costs Rising Fastest in 17 Years

Why does the League of the South advocate buying local food, raising your own (as much as you can), and promoting local farmers? Because the global food system can't match the loyalties, community connections, and vitality of self-sustaining communities -- as this unsettling development shows:

The U.S. is wrestling with the worst food inflation in 17 years, and analysts expect new data due on Wednesday to show it's getting worse. That's putting the squeeze on poor families and forcing bakeries, bagel shops and delis to explain price increases to their customers.

U.S. food prices rose 4 percent in 2007, compared with an average 2.5 percent annual rise for the last 15 years, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. And the agency says 2008 could be worse, with a rise of as much as 4.5 percent.

Higher prices for food and energy are again expected to play a leading role in pushing the government's consumer price index higher for March.

Increases in fuel costs and soaring demand have led to disruptions in the global food supply, stoking riots in Haiti, leading to the fall of the government when it was unable to restore oder. And unrest is breaking out elsewhere, including Egypt, Bangladesh, and Mozambique. And officials see even worse problems for even developed nations:

International Monetary Fund Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn, also speaking at the joint IMF-World Bank spring meeting, said, "If food prices go on as they are today, then the consequences on the population in a large set of countries ... will be terrible."

He added that "disruptions may occur in the economic environment ... so that at the end of the day most governments, having done well during the last five or 10 years, will see what they have done totally destroyed, and their legitimacy facing the population destroyed also."

With the concentration of food production and distribution in this country, bottlenecks will become the rule rather than the exception. Oversized, centralized bureaucracies and corporations, because they must do things "by the book," lack the resilience and adaptability of smaller, more nimble operations, which respond faster to changing local conditions.

Smaller is not only beautiful, it's also better at adapting and surviving. Ask any dinosaur.

Support your local militia

What a crystal-clear example of spontaneous order. Iraq is overflowing with lessons, from the imperial overstretch that may finally wreck the DC empire, to shining examples of how people resist disaster and foreign domination to forge a political association of their own choosing. We should be paying closer attention.

Iraq, an artificial nation cobbled together by Britain after World War I, could only be held together by force. That was provided by a succession of ruthless leaders, the last being Saddam. Once his dictatorship was overthrown, the various ethnic and sectarian groups naturally began asserting their own vision of self-determination. But this was unacceptable to the Neocons, who were determined to make Iraq into their ideal of a harmonious, multi-ethnic democracy. Things didn't work out that way, as this article relates:

The government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, which has provided little financial assistance to the more than 2 million Iraqis who have fled the country's sectarian violence, has also failed to support millions more internally displaced persons who are instead being aided by militias, according to a report by Refugees International due for release today.

The vacuum was quickly and naturally filled by local militias, which enjoyed the support of the local population:

"Militias of all denominations are improving their local base of support by providing social services in neighborhoods and towns they control," the report says. It also finds that the Iraqi government, "although it has access to large sums of money," lacks the capacity and political will "to address humanitarian needs."

The US government condemns the Iraqi militias as "criminal gangs." Problem is, the central Iraqi government would not even exist if the US wasn't propping it up and sheltering it inside the US fortress called the Green Zone. The US-backed Iraqi government lacks "political will" because there is no shared vision among the different groups constituting this artificial, multi-ethnic mishmash to unite them and coordinate their efforts.

That's why a shared, historical culture is essential to creating and sustaining free government and individual liberty. And as an alien, contemptuous ruling elite in DC steers a gullible people toward a similar future of squabbling ethnic groups elbowing each other for control here in the US, this is a lesson we'd better pay close attention to.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Selling McCain

Well, it's started. Our handlers and their drummers have started prodding and sweet-talking conservatives into supporting John McCain as the best deal they can expect. This piece is typical:

The independent label sticks to John McCain because he antagonizes fellow Republicans and likes to work with Democrats.

No, we aren't angry at McCain for being "independent." We're angry at him him for supporting the globalist/multicult agenda in defiance of conservative values.

But this is the age of brand names, when slapping on a tag determines the value and meaning of something. So now we're being told that the real political tag that applies to John McCain is: conservative.

No, really:

But a different label applies to his actual record: conservative.

The likely Republican presidential nominee is much more conservative than voters appear to realize. McCain leans to the right on issue after issue, not just on the Iraq war but also on abortion, gay rights, gun control and other issues that matter to his party's social conservatives.

Spare me. If support for the Iraq War defines one as a conservative, then the leftist atheist Christopher Hitchens, Joe Lieberman, and Labour leader Tony Blair are conservatives.

We're caught in an age where words have lost their meaning. The debate over who is and is not a conservative reminds me of the decades-long claim that true affection for the Constitution requires Americans to regard it as a "living document," which in practice argues it has no intrinsic meaning.

And the label "conservative" has been losing real meaning ever since the rise of the Neocons, who should all be found guilty of identity theft. They use conservative language to dress up a Trotskyite philosophy supporting the agenda of the globalist ruling elite. Bush illustrated the screaming contradiction of the Neocon worldview when he defended illegal immigrants by claiming they were motivated by "family values," and that granting them amnesty and citizenship was the "conservative" thing to do. Luckily, that was too absurd even for the war-crazy Bushbots.

Then there are out-and-out frauds like Andrew Sullivan, who asserts today's enlightened conservatives should support same-sex "marriage" and oppose "Christianism." He tried to rally Log Cabin Republicans to support Bush's wars as a crusade for homosexual liberation, and is all for Open Borders as long as "immigration equality" is granted to homosexuals and HIV-infected immigrants.

Are those conservative positions? I suppose so -- if Humpty Dumpty has re-defined conservatism to include John McCain, anything's possible.

Thank You, Dick Cheney, For Approving Torture

I've complained before about how increasingly difficult it is to satirize pundits and politicians in post-9/11 America. When I saw the title to this piece, my first instinct was that it was satirical. Wrong -- it's supposed to be "patriotic."

Cheney, like Bush, has not forgotten the devastation visited upon this country on September 11, 2001. He has not forgotten that efforts before that date to deal with terrorism resulted in complete and utter failure. He has not forgotten the lessons that we cannot stop people who are bent on our destruction, and have no regard for their own lives or limbs

We cannot stop them? Then why try? And has anyone thought of not welcoming them into the country in the first place?

Sadly, this piece is all too representative of an age where argument consists of screaming platitudes at anyone who disagrees. To be patriotic these days is to demand more power for the Federal government while repudiating the restraints on government power in the Bill of Rights as "protection for terrorists." Because, as this writer claims, the threat of terrorism trumps all concerns about domestic tyranny:

...if anything the Bush Administration has been too muted in explaining to America how serious the threat really is. Far from “fear-mongering,” they seem content to work behind the scenes saving our lives daily while everyone else worries about whether Europe will ever like us again.

Time for a reality check. The documented fact is that terrorism grabs headlines all out of proportion to its actual threat. Consider this from John Mueller:

...the total number of people killed worldwide by genuine al-Qaeda types and assorted wannabes outside of war zones since 9/11 averages about 300 per year. That is certainly 300 a year too many, but that number is smaller than the yearly number of bathtub drownings in the United States. Moreover, unless the terrorists are able somehow massively to increase their capacities, the likelihood that a person living outside a war zone will perish at the hands of an international terrorist over an eighty-year period is about one in 80,000. By comparison, an American’s chance of dying in an auto accident over the same time interval is one in eighty.

So if you want our Lord Protector Dick Cheney to be more effective in watching over us, he should begin monitoring our bathrooms.

Mexico cracks down on illegal Central American immigrants

Apparently, these Latinos don't live under the same moon as Mexicans:

For thousands of illegal immigrants from Central America, the long journey to the U.S. starts here, on the groaning back of a freight train they call The Beast.

But these days many don't get too far.

Central Americans without documents now face increased security within Mexico, including checks on the train for stowaways. It's also harder for them to head north once they cross into Mexico because of hurricane damage to the train tracks.

The result: The number of non-Mexican migrants stopped by the U.S. Border Patrol has dropped almost 60 percent from 2005, despite increased detention efforts. About 68,000 non-Mexican migrants — mostly Central Americans — were detained last year, compared to 165,000 in 2005. Non-Mexicans make up about 10 percent of all migrants caught by Border Patrol officers.

In the US, those who point out that illegals often work under the table for less than Americans, thereby taking American jobs, are called "extremist nativists." In Mexico, they're called "concerned Mexicans":

Many Mexicans also are sympathetic to illegal immigrants from Central America, but the issue still causes some tensions that echo the U.S. debate. Isaac Castillo, owner of the Hotel La Posada in Arriaga, argues that Central American immigrants often end up working in Mexico, where wages can be double the few dollars a day they might earn at home.

"The problem isn't just in the U.S., but in Mexico, because a lot of Central Americans want to stay here and compete with Mexicans for jobs," he said.

After all, by halting Central Americans before they can reach the US, the Mexican authorities can preserve US jobs for those who rightfully deserve them: poor Mexicans. If they didn't, they'd have to reform their corrupt kleptocracy, and that ain't happening.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Happy birthday, Thomas Jefferson!



Here's what the third president had to say about the right of secession and the threat of Hamiltonian mercantilism:

"The alternatives between which we are to choose [are fairly stated]: 1, licentious commerce and gambling speculations for a few, with eternal war for the many; or, 2, restricted commerce, peace and steady occupations for all. If any State in the Union will declare that it prefers separation with the first alternative to a continuance in union without it, I have no hesitation in saying 'let us separate.' I would rather the States should withdraw which are for unlimited commerce and war, and confederate with those alone which are for peace and agriculture."

Sounds like Mr. Jefferson was right about option 1, which gave us global outsourcing, corporate welfare, the military-industrial complex, and a war whose supporters admit has no end in sight.

Which is why we want to try option 2.

Hicks Nix Slick's Tricks

Here's a video of Obama making the now-infamous talk at "Billionaire's Row" in San Francisco. This clip immediately precedes his statement about how bitter working-class whites cling to religion, guns, and xenophobia "as a way to explain their frustrations." Do note the posh surroundings, his natty outfit, and the opulence of the setting, including the audience of rich donors.

Here's the transcript, via Politico:

Here's how it is: in a lot of these communities in big industrial states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, people have been beaten down so long, and they feel so betrayed by government, and when they hear a pitch that is premised on not being cynical about government, then a part of them just doesn't buy it. And when it's delivered by -- it's true that when it's delivered by a 46-year-old black man named Barack Obama (laugher), then that adds another layer of skepticism.

Yeah, when these small-town folk hear something from a black man, they're less likely to believe him. I'd say Obama's paid close attention to Jeremiah Wright's sermons about whites.

Compare that to the TV commercial Obama's running here in North Carolina. Keep in mind that at the exclusive fund-raiser in San Francisco, he had put down the working class for their "anti-trade sentiment." But in this ad, the sleeves of his white shirt are rolled up, he's surrounded by admiring working-class whites, and he's railing against the globalist corporations that move their operations to China:



This "anti-spin" candidate is the best spinner I've ever seen. He's goooood!