Thursday, March 09, 2006

Whittling Down The In-Box

The problem with being a part-time blogger is that early mornings, evenings, and weekends just aren't enough time to keep up with all the commentary I feel compelled to produce on the full range of current events topics that keep pouring forth in the news. Consequently, every once in a while I'm faced with the decision of either dumping a bunch of material without posting on any of it or condensing it down to a "drive-by" entry.

The following should tell you which way I went this time.

*Ralph Peters of the New York Post just got back from Iraq, and now matter how hard he looked, he couldn't find any evidence of the "civil war" that the American Left and isolationist Right are insisting is already underway. As a matter of fact, RP observed that it was the much-maligned Iraqi army that prevented the spread of violence and restorted and maintained order (h/t RCP).

Bill Crawford has a lot more of the untold Iraqi story on NRO.

*Reuters let slip that the jihadis we are "torturing" at Gitmo are in fact better treated than the inmates of Belgian prisons. Which was awfully inconvenient for Mohammad al-Qahtani, the so-called "20th hijacker," who, under the guidance of his terror-symp lawyer, just recently recanted all his previous 9/11 testimony on the claim that he made it all up under "torture."

Better luck next time, Mo...(h/t RCP)

*We have discussed here from time to time the blatant scientific fraud that is the establishment pursuit of the unproven chimera of embryonic stem cell research when the only confirmed and verified medical benefits have come from adult stem cells. And we're far from the only ones.

Well, CBS' Sixty Minutes was at it again, and Mr. Fumento pancaked them nicely for their dishonest efforts.

*Here in Ukrainington, the state affiliate of the National Education Association has been running ads lamenting that our state is 42nd in the country in education spending, as if spending and educational performance have anything whatsoever to do with each other. That made me appreciate this John Stossel piece that much more.

I guess when David Schultz boxed his ears on 20/20 twenty years ago, it knocked some sense between his ears as well.

*John Dugard, a South African lawyer, submitted a UN report accusing Israel of "terrorizing Palestinians with impunity, attacking children on their way to school and destroying farmers' trees and crops." Or, in plain, non-multilateralist English, the UN considers the Jews the "terrorists" in the Holy Land, not the Palestinians who just elected Hamas, an Iranian- and al Qaeda-affiliated avowed terrorist gang, as their new government.

Never mind the U.S., why does Israel remain a member of this malodorously anti-Semitic organization?

*Could Fidel Castro's burgeoning Latin American empire be about to gain another member?

And to think that he was written off after the Evil Empire went the way of the dodo. Pity Bill Clinton didn't take my advice way back in 1994 and invade Cuba instead of Haiti. After all, what national security threat did Rauol Cedras ever pose?

*Well, I guess this was inevitable:

Vermont Senator Pat "Leaky" Leahy charged on Wednesday that President Bush was not telling the truth three weeks ago when he told reporters he had only recently learned about the Committee on Foreign Investment's decision to allow a Dubai company run terminals at several U.S. ports.

"Now, c'mon. You don't make a decision this significant without the president being aware of it," Leahy told WVMT Vermont radio's Charlie & Ernie Show.

"I understand that they want to be very protective [by saying], 'Well, the President wasn't really involved in this," Leahy said.

But the top Democrat insisted: "He was well aware of this."
The temptation to call Bush a liar (again) overpowered its predecessor, the allure of lambasting his competence. "What did the President know, and when did he know it?" One of the Donks is going to dig that one out of mothballs before the next Sunday shows, you can count on it.

It's difficult for me to feel a whole lot of sympathy for the White House on this one. This is what they get, and deserve, for playing right into the DisLoyal Opposition's hands on the DPW deal and defensively bungling the PR aftermath by getting in such indignant moral dudgeon about it, complete with pre-emptive veto threats.

Bill Clinton may have been PR-obsessed, but George W. Bush acts like PR doesn't exist. And it's finally worn away all his "teflon," and is causing serious damage to his political "vitals" underneath.

*We've been a big backer of Representative Katherine Harris' Florida Senate challenge to vulernable Dem incumbent Bill "Major" Nelson against the RINOesque opposition of virtually the entire GOP establishment, and the Bushies in particular. But in light of recent revelations of internal campaign disarray, poor fundraising, and her association with a defense contractor, MZM Inc., that prosecutors say illegally funneled thousands of dollars to her 2004 House campaign, it seems beyond argument that while our support for Congresswoman Harris hasn't diminished, our realization that she is damaged political goods has trumped it.

But despite it all, she's not getting out of the race.

You have to like her spunk, and there's no reason at this point to disbelieve her protestations that she didn't "knowingly do anything wrong." Other, perhaps, than that that is pretty much what her ex-colleague Randy "Duke" Cunningham said when his ties to MZM became public, and he's headed for an eight-year stay in Club Fed.

Either way, it would seem to make her the last Pachyderm to be sent up against the out-of-step-with-Florida-voters Nelson. Could outgoing Governor Jeb Bush be persuaded to throw his hat into the ring?

*While the so-called "Republican Majority for Choice" continues its fratricidal jihad against Senator Rick Santorum (and, technically, its own board member "Snarlin'" Arlen Specter), as well as cultivating its absurd delusions of grandeur about itself, it is the Democrats who continue to flounder. They are stubbornly persisting in misreading the electorate, their push-polling reveals that they still have not just nothing positive to say but nothing new either, and their own civil war has now come even more out into the open.

And their 2008 presidential nominee perfectly symbolizes that schizm all by herself, having recently introduced fresh HillaryCare legislation and warred with herself by "going nativist" on port security and denouncing tougher statutes against illegal immigration as "a police state" - which is itself a flip-flop from the stance she took on that same issue just a few short years ago.

No wonder Michael Barone, the supreme political big-picture guy, thinks that while the Republicans certainly have their problems, the Democrats are in even worse shape, and no serious threat next November.