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April 17, 2014 / 17 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘U.S. elections’

Puerto Rico, Not Israel, May Soon Become the 51st State

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

In a two-part referendum held on Tuesday, Puerto Rico voted in favor of becoming a U.S. State.

Congress would need to approve Puerto Rico’s full entry into the Union, if this move goes forward.

Puerto Rico became an American territory in 1898, an it’s residents acquired U.S. citizenship in 1917, but the 3.7 million Puerto Ricans living on the island aren’t allowed to vote in U.S. elections unless they are actually living in the U.S. 4.6 million Puerto Ricans live within the United States.

It looks like Israel may lose it’s unofficial title as “The 51st State”.

Media Using Gaffe Charge to Drown Out Romney’s Truth

Thursday, September 20th, 2012

Gaffe, a word that temporarily came to be associated with political misstatements, has returned to its origins as a social faux pas, such as saying something at a dinner party that everyone knows to be true, but that know mustn’t be said out loud.

The media are still doing their best to pretend that a gaffe is a mistake, when they are actually using it to mean the telling of inconvenient truths. Obama’s reign of error is a constellation of inconvenient truths, economic, security and legal, that cannot be discussed in public. The telling of these inconvenient truths has been met with cries of racism, no matter how little they have to do with race. Now they are being met with cries of “Gaffe, Gaffe,” when Romney brings them up.

Did Obama skip presidential intelligence briefings on the most serious national security threats for a week before September 11? Did the Benghazi consulate lack basic security in a city where Islamist militias were running rampant and attacks on foreign diplomats had already taken place? Was the entire situation a result of an illegal war fought by Obama under false pretenses that armed Islamist militias and set them loose to persecute Libyan Sufis and seize half of Mali? Did Obama sleep through the beginning of the largest wave of attacks on America during his term while partying in Vegas?

Such inconvenient truths can only be met by accusing their teller of committing the horrible gaffe of politicizing the formerly apolitical and bipartisan arena of unilateral wars and the violence arising from them– an area that the Democrats decided was off-limits ever since they stopped criticizing such wars and began fighting them four years ago.

Has the Israeli-Palestinian peace process dragged on for twenty years without a single gleam of hope? The official position is that the Israelis, who brought in Arafat from the cold, gave him a state and pleaded with him to make a deal, are to blame. The inconvenient truth is that Arafat and his cronies never stopped the terror because it was the only thing they knew how to do and it was the only reason that anyone gave them the time of day. And the inconvenient truth is another gaffe.

In a state of national and international disaster, the worst possible gaffe is telling the truth about the state of affairs we are in. These gaffes disturb the party-goers signing up to work for non-profits and watching cheerful reports about the Arab Spring and the economic recovery while the ship sinks around them. And the party men and women react to it with the outraged demeanor of spoiled children.

A gaffe occurs when Mitt Romney talks about a real problem. It’s the real part, more than anything else, that is the problem. Reality has no place in the hysterical media feed from an imaginary world as unreal as anything that Communist apparatchiks or Nazi propagandists were broadcasting to their people in the dying days of their regimes.

Consume enough media and you come to understand that the people manufacturing it are not only hacks, they’re clueless hacks, who like their master in the White House, have absolutely no idea how to solve any of the country’s problems and no interest whatsoever in even bothering to try. They are mechanical men marching to an ideological beat and have no more interest in reality than do the denizens of a mental ward.

Los Angeles bans plastic bags to save the planet based on the appeal of a sitcom actress. New York’s Attorney General decriminalizes drugs while cracking down on prescription drug abuse with a statewide database. His rationale for this is that heroin is abused by poor minorities while painkillers are abused by rich white people. The Alabama ACLU sues the penal system for not allowing HIV inmates to work in the prison kitchen.

The left has long ago passed the point where they can be parodied. Any lunatic thing that you can imagine, they have already done or are planning to do. And compared to them the Soviet Union looks like a picture of credible management since its commissars reined in much of the insanity early on and at least made the occasional effort at applying their ideology to actual problems.

Our version of the Soviet Union is a ceaseless application of ideology whose only purpose is its application. There is no purpose to any of the three pieces of insanity listed above except the grad school exercise of a senseless ideological program chasing its own tail. Unlike the Soviet Union, there is no goal beyond the application of increasingly stifling programs of ideological conformity. There is no purpose except for the smug left to get even smugger at the expense of everyone else.

Men and women who are this ruined as policymakers, journalists and human beings are in no shape for an encounter with reality. When you’re crusading to ban plastic bags and include Islamist killers in the progressive camp, when your goal is to fight a truly progressive war on drugs and defend the rights of prisoners to unwillingly contract HIV from their servers, then reality is a foreign enemy to be fought tooth and nail.

The consensus of the last four years has been that we won’t discuss reality and in exchange we lose all our legal rights. It’s not exactly a great bargain, but the media which brokered it on our behalf, have done their best to dress it up as well as it can. Our economy is on its last legs, our national security is shot and the only reason we’re still running is that the country still has reserves of wealth that haven’t been plundered and the dregs of a counter-terror policy that carried over to these four years.

Mentioning any of this is another gaffe, another cold blast of reality blowing through rooms heated to Hawaiian standard temperatures. And the people in those rooms are as threatened by reality gaffes as schizophrenics are by the gnawing sense that the world outside is a very different place than the one in their skulls. And they react to it in the same way, with fear, hate and barely restrained violence.

It’s not just Muslims who react with hysterical violence when the power of their delusion is undermined by an outside world that cares nothing for the status of a 7th Century pedophile warlord, not any different than his ilk cluttering up Afghanistan today. The left’s response to anything that lowers the status of their prophet, stops just short of torching fried chicken places, especially if those places are also against gay marriage.

The streams of reporters gritting their teeth at the sight of Romney, a man whom like McCain they would have had no objection to if not for his temerity in insulting the Prophet Ibn Hussein,don’t quite explode into violence. Instead they angrily denounce the faux pas all of that talk about real world economics and foreign policy is. Gaffes are what they call that kind of talk. And no one at a party likes a gaffe.

During the Bush years, the media complained that the party circuit had died. It’s come roaring back in the age of Obama and no one is willing to give it up. The media are an extension of the party, not just the cocktail parties, but the party behind the party, the one that believes in revolution for the sake of revolution, and that turned a grunt community organizer into a senator and then the man on top.

All that power and madness crammed into ballrooms, chocking on canapes, stumbling past endless rows of champagne bottles through mirrored rooms, dim lighting and sweating waiters is not ready for a meeting with reality. And when that stiff refugee from the fifties corners them and starts talking about economics, about foreign policy, they push him away and cry, “Gaffe, Gaffe.”

The gaffe is that the emperor is naked. The gaffe is that the smartest man in America, the technocrat in chief, stumbles onto the Letterman set, which looks almost as fake as he does, and can’t even name the size of the national debt. And who cares anyway except that it’s big and getting bigger. No one is supposed to even bring that up, harsh the mellow and bring the party down. That’s another gaffe right there.

The gaffe is that the same people who are running the country into the ground are also showing up every night on the news and every day on the sites to lie through their teeth about it. The difference between liberal media and liberal politicians has become a technical formality that mostly has to do with who signs their checks. The gaffe is that no one is allowed to remind the sweating throngs of the government-media complex that while they party, the arrow has moved closer to midnight.

In the kingdom of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. But that’s a myth. In the kingdom of the blind, the one-eyed man is a walking hate crime. In the kingdom of the blind, sight is a crime and mentioning what you see is a gaffe. In a kingdom where the king doesn’t know how much he owes and doesn’t want to know, mentioning the amount is a gaffe. Showing the king and his advisers up as fools and knaves is an even bigger gaffe. And when the king decides to parade around in his invisible clothes– mentioning that he’s naked is the biggest gaffe of them all.

Originally published at Sultan Knish.

What is More Virtuous: Paying Taxes or Giving Charity?

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

David Axelrod was manhandled across cyberspace for tweeting an attack against Republican donors Sheldon and Miriam Adelson on the morning of September 11th. Let’s be charitable here and forgive Axelrod his breech of etiquette given that campaigns become so intense you can easily get carried away without meaning to. Whatever the case, Axelrod was reacting to a report in the Huffington Post that if Mitt Romney won the election people like the Adelsons could save billions in taxes. The report also said that a repeal of the estate tax could save billions more.

As the Adelsons are arguably the world’s foremost supporters of Jewish causes and charities, this raises for a Rabbi who is also a congressional candidate the question of what is a bigger mitzvah: paying taxes or giving charity. Surely even Axelrod, or other critics of the Adelsons, are not suggesting the couple have a problem parting with their money, as they regularly contribute hundreds of millions of dollars to charity. Rather, the argument is that they should be paying higher taxes, and the payment of higher taxes on the part of the super-rich has been a constant campaign theme.

Mind you, even Obama and Axelrod have their limits. They are not advocating confiscatory taxation as is, say, France’s new President Francois Hollande, whose plans to tax those making more than a million euros per annum at a rate of 75% is already leading to an exodus of the rich. No, President Obama wants the Bush tax cuts to expire at the end of the year leading to a federal tax rate of 39% for those in the highest bracket.

But since America came into being as a protest against unfair taxation, what rate is fair, even for the super-rich? For example, in my home state of New Jersey a millionaire will pay, at present, 35% of his income to the Federal government and then nearly 10% percent to the state, and New Jersey was changed by Democrat Jon Corzine to a net income state, meaning you cannot deduct what you pay in Federal Taxes from your state tax bill. That means about half your income goes to taxation, and that’s before real estate tax (in New Jersey it’s arguably the highest in the nation), sales tax, and the myriad other taxes we each pay on a daily basis (take a look at your monthly cell phone bill to see if you can even count how many taxes there are).

Still we are told that America’s taxes ought to be higher. In New Jersey it hasn’t worked. People are leaving the state because they’re tired of being ripped off. So while we lost a Congressional seat, leading to a terribly bitter Democratic primary here in the 9th district, Florida and Texas, which have no state income tax, added a bunch. When I meet people campaigning, they tell me that taxes are the number one issue for them.

Are American citizens really expected to feel guilty about not paying enough tax? When we see such incredible government waste, should we be eager to fork over more money to see it so much of it squandered?

Take President Obama’s trillion dollar stimulus that seemed to have stimulated only greater American resentment at paying taxes. Nearly a trillion dollars was poured down a sinkhole but produced no jobs or greater economic performance. I even remember reading a story after the package passed in February 2008 of a public school that was sent hundreds of thousands of dollars to spend. The school responded they didn’t need the money. They had good facilities and new equipment. No matter. They were told they had to spend the stimulus funds.

I remember being deeply upset. I’m an orthodox Jew. I have a right to educate my children in the Jewish tradition, just as Catholic, Islamic, and Christian parents. I send my kids to a Jewish day school. But not a dollar of my hard-earned tax dollars is allowed to pay a single expense at my children’s Yeshivas and Jewish day schools, even for completely secular subjects. Religious parents throughout the country are having fewer children as they struggle to keep up with insanely high taxes and insanely high tuition. Yet here was a school having our tax dollars being shoved down its throat when it didn’t want or need the money.

Romney Doubts the Wisdom of Establishing a Palestinian State

Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

A candid video of Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney doubting the logic of establishing a Palestinian state was released by the Leftist website, Mother Jones, earlier today.

The video was taken at a fundraiser for the Romney campaign on May 17th of this year.

In the video Romney says that he is “torn by two perspectives” with regard to Israeli-Palestinian peace. According to the first, which is the one he “has long held”, “the Palestinians have no interest whatsoever in establishing peace, and that the pathway to peace is almost unthinkable to accomplish.”

Romney elaborated, outlining the problems Israel would have ensuring that the Palestinian state does not become militarized or used by Iran as a base to attack Israel.

The Israelis are going to patrol the border between Jordan, Syria, and this new Palestinian nation? Well, the Palestinians would say, “Uh, no way! We’re an independent country. You can’t guard our border with other Arab nations.”

And now how about the airport? How about flying into this Palestinian nation? Are we going to allow military aircraft to come in and weaponry to come in? And if not, who’s going to keep it from coming in? Well, the Israelis. Well, the Palestinians are going to say, “We’re not an independent nation if Israel is able to come in and tell us what can land in our airport.”

The other perspective Romney mentioned is that of an unnamed former secretary of state who Romney said called him and told him that after the next Palestinian Authority elections there will be prospects for peace. However, Romney said he “did not delve into” that view.

Romney – according to the first perspective at least – appears more opposed to Palestinian statehood than Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who said Israel should accept a “demilitarized” Palestinian state, as Romney argues that it would be impossible to ensure that the state remained demiliterized.

Here’s the text of the portion of Romney’s speech released by Mother Jones (the video is below):

I’m torn by two perspectives in this regard. One is the one which I’ve had for some time, which is that the Palestinians have no interest whatsoever in establishing peace, and that the pathway to peace is almost unthinkable to accomplish.

Now why do I say that? Some might say, well let’s let the Palestinians have the West Bank, and have security, and set up a separate nation for the Palestinians. And then comes a couple of thorny questions.

And I don’t have a map right here to look at the geography, but the border between Israel and the West Bank is obviously right there, right next to Tel Aviv, which is the financial capital, the industrial capital of Israel, the center of Israel. It’s—what the border be? Maybe seven miles from Tel Aviv to what would be the West Bank…

The other side of the West Bank, the other side of what would be this new Palestinian state would either be Syria at one point, or Jordan. And of course, the Iranians would want to do through the West Bank exactly what they did through Lebanon, what they did near Gaza.

Which is that the Iranians would want to bring missiles and armament into the West Bank and potentially threaten Israel. So Israel of course would have to say, “That can’t happen. We’ve got to keep the Iranians from bringing weaponry into the West Bank.” Well, that means that—who? The Israelis are going to patrol the border between Jordan, Syria, and this new Palestinian nation? Well, the Palestinians would say, “Uh, no way! We’re an independent country. You can’t guard our border with other Arab nations.”

And now how about the airport? How about flying into this Palestinian nation? Are we going to allow military aircraft to come in and weaponry to come in? And if not, who’s going to keep it from coming in? Well, the Israelis. Well, the Palestinians are going to say, “We’re not an independent nation if Israel is able to come in and tell us what can land in our airport.”

These are problems—these are very hard to solve, all right? And I look at the Palestinians not wanting to see peace anyway, for political purposes, committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel, and these thorny issues, and I say, “There’s just no way.”

And so what you do is you say, “You move things along the best way you can.” You hope for some degree of stability, but you recognize that this is going to remain an unsolved problem. We live with that in China and Taiwan. All right, we have a potentially volatile situation but we sort of live with it, and we kick the ball down the field and hope that ultimately, somehow, something will happen and resolve it. We don’t go to war to try and resolve it imminently.

On the other hand, I got a call from a former secretary of state. I won’t mention which one it was, but this individual said to me, you know, I think there’s a prospect for a settlement between the Palestinians and the Israelis after the Palestinian elections. I said, “Really?” And, you know, his answer was, “Yes, I think there’s some prospect.” And I didn’t delve into it.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/romney-doubts-the-wisdom-of-establishing-a-palestinian-state/2012/09/18/

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