Obama rejected Boehner's latest offer stating it did not tax the rich (successful) enough and also probably betting Boehner will continue making offers rather than stand his ground and let the chips fall where they may.
Had Boehner played poker with Reagan I suspect the former president would have cleaned his clock.
Last thing I heard is Boehner was also willing to play the debt ceiling card prematurely as a furthe inducement regarding cliff negotiations.
Our possession of gas and ability to extricate can be a boon to our economy. Obama has opposed it for a variety of reasons but eventually it will happen despite his opposition and EPA roadblocks. (See 1 below)
Death spiral begun? (See 2 and 2a below.)
Daniel Pipes bullish on prospects for Israel's survival. Pretty much repeats what he said here several months ago. (See 3 below.)
We all know the problem is spending not revenue. Obama, is not stupid, an incompetent manager maybe but not stupid and he knows spending is the problem as well. Obama simply wants to keep doing it. (See 4 below.)
When it comes to mental health in Georgia, I happen to have some background knowledge because Dr. William (Bill) Rottersman, who was th pre-iminent Menninger trained psychiatrist in Georgia, was appointed by Gov. Carter to head Georgia's Mental Health Program. Bill and his wife Lena (both have passed away) were very dear and close friends.
After two months on the job, Bill resigned and told me he never met a more incompetent manager than Carter.
Subsequently, Carter began to release mental patients and close facilities because he concluded new drugs had solved most mental health problems. What Carter failed to comprehend is that when many patients on these new drugs began to feel better they quit taking them or took them irregularly or did not take them at all.
When Carter became president his Secretary of Health was a pot smoking free wheeling spirit and the mental health issue, in this nation, has never been properly addressed. Some attention will be paid to it now along with lip service but, as I have said before, in an atmosphere brought about by tragedy, such as in Connecticut, I dare say whatever is done will either fall short of the true need and/or will fade away.
America's attention span lasts until the next crisis and as log as the media and news keep it before them. Like a drunk we simply stagger from one crisis to the next leaving in the wake a series of bad legislation or more tragedy. On occasion, we might get it right but then, all too often, bureaucrats screw it up in implementation by going overboard etc. The EPA is one of the biggest offenders,
Did not the current Mayor of Chicago advance his political career with the message: "Never let a crisis go to waste. " Crises sell newspapers and provide entertainment on TV.(See 5 below.)
Has Russia decided to re-set Syria? Now that Hillary has a concussion are the Russians taking advantage? Are they willing to challenge Obama's comment about having more flexibility once re-elected ? By flexibility did Obama really mean greater willingness to look the other way as he usually does leading from the rear? (See 6 below.)
1)Eni’s Recchi: Shale Gas Boom to Transform US Economy
By Michael Kling
The U.S. shale gas boom is changing the American economy as well as the industry dynamics in Europe and Asia, said Giuseppe Recchi, chairman of Eni, an Italian oil and gas company. "This shale gas, fracking economy … is changing the dynamics of the gas business in Europe and Asia," Recchi told CNBC.
Cheaper natural gas will bring back energy-intensive manufacturing to the United States, Recchi said, noting that the boom is similar to the commerce revolution prompted by the Internet. Editor's Note: Prophetic Economist Warns: “It’s Curtains for America.”
See Evidence. "A lot of global brands are bringing back this capacity to the U.S., which creates jobs." Eni, the biggest oil company in Africa, made a major gas find in Mozambique. The reserve has enough gas to meet the consumption of Italy for 25 years, he told CNBC. Manufacturers say they will invest over $90 billion in U.S. businesses that can use cheaper natural gas, according to the Financial Times. Petrochemicals, fuel, fertilizer and steel industries stand to benefit. "This revolution is creating great opportunities to increase manufacturing capability, and has tremendous potential for economic impact and job creation,”
Greg Garland, chief executive of Phillips 66, told the Financial Times. Domestic prices might rise if the industry exports the gas as liquefied natural gas, some caution.
However, a U.S. Energy Department report predicts that even unrestricted liquefied natural gas exports would only modestly impact prices at home, according to the Financial Times.
2)Eleven states with more people on welfare than they have employed ? The voters are in “La La” land………………..even a 3rd grader can see the fallacy of this………….and, of course, the number of states will continue to grow until the bubble bursts…………….it would appear we are doomed and past the point of no return?
Death Spiral These 11 States now have More People on Welfare than they do Employed! And Surprise-Surprise!!! 7 of these States voted for Obama.
This Just Proves that The Majority of Americans have No Intentions of Making a Better Independent Life for Themselves and their Families and are content Living on The Tax Payers Dime for Eternity!
2a)Conservatives Rationalize as America Circles the Drain
By Selwyn Duke
It's often hard to accept the truth, especially when that truth is scary -- when reality seems to offer you no solutions, only poison from which to pick.
It's as with a man I once knew who insisted that it couldn't be proven that smoking is bad for you. He knew better in his heart, but his available choices -- giving up cigarettes or accepting the danger of their use -- were both emotionally unpalatable to him. Enter the rationalization.
We're seeing the same thing with Republicans in of Barack Obama's re-election. Radio host Sean Hannity, citing changing American demographics, stated a while back that his position on immigration has "evolved": we now must offer illegals some kind of pathway to citizenship (aka amnesty). Other conservatives are warning that we must dispense with social issues, or the Republican Party will be dispensed with.
Of course, this isn't always rationalization. Some conservatives, and Hannity is likely among them, may truly believe that we can avoid electoral hell if we have just one more . Conservatives have always responded to seemingly inevitable political changes by, slowly but surely, compromising their way to tyranny. But rationalization is a huge factor, and what is the scary truth here that conservatives dare not contemplate?
They are losing the culture.
Little by little.
And as the culture goes, so go political fortunes.
Let's spell it out:
- To paraphrase Lincoln, the teaching in the schools today will be the politics of tomorrow. The left has long controlled academia.
- The media, our conduit of information, is largely controlled by the left.
- As Plato wrote, "[w]hen modes of music change, the fundamental laws of the state always change with them." Just imagine what he would have said about far more influential , two media through which popular culture -- which the left controls -- is imbibed.
Now, like a computer, people can process only the data they are given. Thus, even when people function logically like a computer (which can be rare), they're operating within a leftist of ideas forged by the Triumvirate of Evil (TE): academia, the media, and popular culture. These data-entry specialists ensure that it is garbage in as leftist ideology, garbage out as votes.
This brings us to the so-called culture war. The left is the establishment; it controls the above branches of the pen-not-sword military. Conservatives have been reduced to guerrilla warfare, with groups such as the ACLJ, Family Research Council, and Christian Coalition drawing occasional blood, and citizen uprisings such as the defense of Chik-fil-A. And while these actions are sometimes successful, they're always short-lived and are merely defenses that serve only to slow the loss of traditionalist territory.
The reality is that there is no culture war. What is occurring now is a pacification effort.
Some conservatives sense this, but the reality is often too frightening to contemplate. You can vote liberals out of office, but how do you control entities whose agents of change are unelected? Boycotts won't do it because, unlike elections, they require more than a run-up campaign and one voting day of focus and effort; it's often impossible to get enough people on board, and in the aggregate, most don't have the discipline to persevere in a boycott, anyway. And what of traditionalists reversing the Gramscian march through the institutions by themselves entering them? Good luck. Time is short, and, besides, TE leftists are like The Matrix's sentient programs: they guard all the gates and hold all the keys.
In addition to this, add another element to my eighth-paragraph list:
4. You can supplement your domestically produced leftist voters by importing some ready-made ones. Most all of our new immigrants are de facto socialists.
This won't be changed, either, because there no longer are the votes to alter our dhimmi-gration model.
So the hear-see-speak-no-evil reality for conservatives is this: politics will always reflect the culture, which is steadily drifting "left."
And there is no way to democratically reclaim the culture.
So many conservatives shunt this root-rot into their minds' recesses and instead focus on growing pretty leaves on the dying tree: they immerse themselves in the political. Oh, perhaps if we fertilize the Hispanic electorate with the manure of amnesty, it will bloom as a Republican rose. Just one more concession!
Or maybe we just need to stop the blinding sunshine of social issues and try a flood of fiscal conservatism.
First, Republicans have already tried focusing on fiscal matters and de-emphasizing social ones. Note that except when answering direct questions, they didn't talk about social issues much in the 2012 campaign; it was the Democrats, with their WOW (war on women) propaganda, who talked about what the GOP supposedly believed. Ah, this worked only because the media offered air support, you say? See the above list. The media won't suddenly find virtue but will only intensify the pacification effort.
As for the growing Hispanic voting bloc, as I wrote a while back (admittedly, I didn't provide enough nuance), they don't mind social conservatism. And since saying, as I did previously, that they are more socially conservative than are whites is imprecise, I'll rephrase it: Hispanics are less opposed to social conservatism than are whites.
What many Hispanics really want is cradle-to-grave handouts, the kind of big government they voted for -- but never could quite get -- in their native lands. Whether this comes packaged with social conservatism or social liberalism is secondary.
To spell it out more precisely, a higher percentage of whites are passionately opposed to social conservatism, but a higher percentage of whites are also passionately for it. As for Hispanics, the best description of them as a whole isn't socially conservative or liberal, but socially indifferent. They may register the obligatory nod when their priest talks about abortion, but they'd do the same in a setting in which social liberalism was the default. It's simply not something on which their votes hinge. And because of this indifference, their youth will and do conform to the liberal spirit of the age.
Conclusion: Hispanics are not a natural conservative constituency.
Let's tackle another myth. We often hear that this is a "conservative" country, with a plurality of the electorate describing themselves as conservative; as Pew reported, "40% of Americans ... describe their views as conservative, 35% as moderate, and 21% as liberal." But two important factors are missed here. First, the majority of any nation could be called "conservative," as the only consistent definition of that term involves a desire to maintain the status quo, and the status quo is determined by the majority. Second, today's status quo was shaped by yesterday's left and thus is in that sense "liberal." This dovetails with the second factor:
Most "moderates" are actually liberals, usually of the lukewarm variety.
How can this be? First, wishy-washy people lacking in principle will hew mostly to what's fashionable, and, again, progressivism is that. Second, liberals are solipsistic and self-centered and thus see themselves as defining the center (and any deviation from their beliefs as radicalism); hence, even when they are left of our "leftist" middle, in their minds they may be moderates. Third, liberals want to fancy themselves open-minded, so they often like believing they're voices of reason -- moderate and not, perish the thought, extreme. Lastly, both the terms "liberal" and "conservative" have been demonized to a degree, and it takes conviction to brand yourself as one who has unfashionably strayed from the pack. And since liberals are far more likely than conservatives to be relativists -- to believe that "man is the measure of all things" and thus that true principle (which is transcendent) is an illusion -- they tend to care more about social standing than standing on "social constructs" (principles). Ergo, they're more likely than conservatives to adopt a label that sounds good rather than one that rings true.
So that is America in 2012. And where do we go from here? For starters, we need to stop fooling ourselves. Many Johnny-come-lately-to-reality types started talking about Republicans' demographic and cultural winter only after the Nov. 6 election, as if some kind of unforeseeable revolution had taken place. But while it may have represented a tipping point, a long Gramscian evolution had pushed America to that point. A process is in motion, a disease besets us, and if you understand its pathology, you know that no amount of Hispandering or appeals to virtue (e.g., personal responsibility) with an electorate largely lacking in the quality will bear fruit. The remaining healthy acorns need to recognize this, stop trying to fertilize a tree destined for the sawmill, and instead prepare to seed new ground.------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3)Israel at Peace
By Daniel Pipes
Those concerned with the security and welfare of the Jewish state keep asking questions like “Is Israel Doomed?” and Will Israel Survive? (also in French, Israël peut-il survivre?).
One even titled a book The Late Great State of Israel. This gloom results from the unique barrage of threats facing the Jewish state. These include weapons of mass destruction, conventional armies, and terrorism; economic boycott, demographic challenge, and political delegitimization.
No country at present – and perhaps in all history – faces such an array of dangers, from mass violence (Iranian nuclear bombs) to intellectual sabotage (professorial of English). As an aside, threatening the very existence of a country is a distinctive feature of modern Middle East politics rarely found elsewhere in the world: other examples include Kuwait (which actually disappeared into the Iraqi maw for half a year in 1990-91), Bahrain (under intermittent threat from Iranian imperialists), Jordan (seen as an illegitimate British imperial creation), Lebanon (eyed covetously by Syrians), and Cyprus (invaded by Turkish forces in 1974 and newly under threat again).
Back to Israel: I am optimistic it will survive. Several reasons lead me to this conclusion.
First, Israel is strong. The country is characterized by military prowess, high technology capabilities, a strong economy, a booming energy sector, robust population growth, and cultural creativity. Over time, it grows increasingly more powerful than its enemies.
Second, Israelis show a historically unprecedented willingness to compromise. The Israelis' having returned a captured Sinai Peninsula three times to Egypt (in 1949, 1957, and 1982) has no parallel in the history of war and diplomacy. Nearly all the territories Israeli troops conquered in 1967, with the exception of historic Jerusalem, has been open for discussion since just a week after their seizure. In the history of warfare and negotiations, no victor has shown such a willingness as Israel to make “painful concessions” to reach a deal; which other leader has proclaimed, as Ehud Olmert did before and during his prime ministry, that “We are tired of fighting, we are tired of being courageous, we are tired of winning, we are tired of defeating our enemies” and “Peace is achieved through concessions”?
Third, no state of hostilities goes on forever.
Circumstances change, new enemies appear, old angers dissipate, willpower grinds down. Even the longest lasting conflicts eventually get solved. The English and French states, for example, fought each other for over seven centuries before they finally reached an “Entente cordiale” in 1904, allying in the face of an emerging German foe and since then remaining steadfast (if irascible) allies. The Arab-Israeli conflict, one century old, also will not continue unendingly. One has to wonder for how long the Palestinians and their supporters can sustain their goal of eliminating Israel. As the generation of 1948 refugees dies off, will its children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and further progeny continue to dream of a future in Jaffa or Haifa, rather than where they actually live? How long can they mortgage their lives to an ever-more remote irredentism?
Fourth, Palestinians will realize that blind devotion to extremist and rigid ideologies leads to a dead-end. This process has already begun. For example, interviews with extremist Palestinian leaders of an earlier era – Nayef Hawatmeh, Ahmed Jibril, Leila Khaled, and Mohammed Oudeh – shows how the passage of time has changed their perspectives and led to the acknowledgment of basic mistakes. Hawatmeh, leader of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, notes that “After 60 years, we are struggling for what we could have had in 1947.
We have missed many historic opportunities.” Oudeh, planner of the Olympic games attack in 1972 that killed 11 Israeli athletes, says that “maybe, just maybe, we should have shown some flexibility. Back in our days, it was 'the whole of Palestine or nothing.' But we should have accepted a Palestinian state next to Israel.” Hawatmeh and the others forwarded a nationalist agenda which time has passed by and that now has little appeal.
The same, no doubt, will happen to today's favored ideology; however strong they are today, the Islamist forces of Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and Hizbullah shall also lose their vitality one day, and their old men will express a similar remorse about opportunities missed. So, yes, the conflict will come to an end. Further, I expect that that there will be peace between the Jewish state and its neighbors.
Here are some specific predictions: What kind of peace?
As Martin Sherman notes, the word “peace” contains within it two distinct meanings – one concerning relations between two democratic polities, the other between one or more non-democratic polities.
The first refers to what Sherman calls “a condition of mutual harmony between states, maintained by the inherent preference of all parties to preserve a nonviolent status quo. … Not only are differences settled in a nonviolent fashion, but the use of force is virtually inconceivable.” The United States and Canada exemplify this relationship.
The second meaning refers to “an absence of war maintained by deterrence. In this case, only the threat of exorbitant costs dissuades one or both sides from violence. … there is no harmonious interaction between peoples of the various states. Movement across frontiers tends to be highly restricted, heavily regulated, and often totally forbidden.” The United States and the Soviet Union exemplified this relationship.
Israel is a full democracy but not so any of its neighbors, nor are those neighbors on their way to becoming democratic, despite the upheavals of the past year. Therefore, peace between the two sides is likely long to remain of a deterrent nature, being the armed peace of deterrence with limited human contact.
Less than ideal, it will have to do until deep changes take place in the Arabic-speaking countries and a democratic peace can finally go into effect. How? Before an Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty was actually signed in 1979, it was assumed that this would lead to a general ending of the conflict because Egypt is the strongest enemy of Israel. That assessment turned out to be wrong because the signature of a military autocrat (Anwar el-Sadat) persuaded few others.
For several years in the 1980s, I focused on the Syrian government, arguing that “The conflict will go on until Syria follows Israel's other three neighbors and resigns itself to Israel's existence; once this happens, the struggle will come to a rapid end.” That also turned out to be wrong, for Damascus commands little loyalty among Islamists, professors of English, or members of the United Nations. Instead, the Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza are key.
When they tire of conflict, it will end. When? The conflict will go on for about another generation and may be resolved in about the 2030s. This estimate is based on the assessment that the conflict was ripe for peace twenty years ago, in the aftermath of the Kuwait war and the Soviet collapse but was derailed by a combination of Israeli naiveté and Palestinian deceit. Only now, after a long and painful detour, have Israelis begun to figure out the mistakes of diplomacy they made in the Oslo Accords and succeeding efforts.
Starting about now, it could take about twenty years for the correct path to lead to a breakthrough. Who will win? The Oslo process of 1993-2000 showed that compromise is not, in fact, a solution. As in most conflicts, the end of hostilities requires someone to lose and someone to win. The war terminates either when Arabs accept the sovereign Jewish state or when Israelis give up the Zionist project.
It ultimately comes down to a raw question of which side will first crush the other's will. The alternatives are stark and dual; efforts at mitigation actually only postpone a resolution. I hope Israel will win, for a Palestinian victory brings the doubly undesirable result of the destruction of a modern liberal country and its likely replacement by a Hamas-dominated Islamist state. An Israeli victory, in contrast, destroys extremism and actually liberates the Palestinians from their present plight.
Only when Palestinians give up on their anti-Zionist dream of destruction will they be able to invest their efforts to creating an attractive polity, economy, society, and culture. Only when Palestinians give up destroying can they build.
Each of us must do his part to make sure the conflict ends with a positive outcome.
Mr. Pipes (DanielPipes.org) is president of the Middle East Forum and Taube distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University. © 2012 All rights reserved by Daniel Pipes.
It's the Spending, Stupid!
Listening to progressive media pundits, I'd think the most evil man in the universe is Grover Norquist, head of Americans for Tax Reform. His crime? He heads a movement that asks political candidates to pledge not to raise taxes.
I think Grover accomplished a lot. But I wish he'd convinced politicians to pledge not to increase spending.
President Obama says raising taxes to cut the deficit is a "balanced" approach.
But what's "balanced" about raising taxes after vast increases in spending? Trillions for war, Medicare, "stimulus" and solar panels. Tax receipts rose -- after tax-rate cuts -- from $1.9 billion in 2003 to $2.3 billion in 2008, the year the recession started. That increase couldn't keep up with the spending. The deficit doubled -- actually, more than doubled -- as politicians increased spending to nearly $4 trillion! Our debt, at more than $16 trillion, now exceeds our gross domestic product.
Ludicrous, irresponsible spending is why we're in trouble. As columnist Ron Hart points out, Bill Clinton's balanced budget spent $1.7 trillion. "Adjusted for inflation," he writes, "our federal government would (have) a $200 billion surplus. But instead of increasing government spending in line with normal inflation, under Bush and Obama we are spending $3.8 trillion today. Democrats, who believe we have a 'revenue' problem instead of a 'spending' problem, must also think they have a bartender problem, not a drinking problem."
The media obsess about tax rates, but spending is more important. As Milton Friedman taught us, spending is a far more accurate gauge of the government burden. If government spends a dollar, that dollar is taxed away from someone. If it's borrowed, it's removed from productive use, setting the stage for higher taxes later. If the government prints more dollars to fund spending, our purchasing power falls. Transferring purchasing power from the people to the government via inflation is a form of taxation.
If Republicans and Democrats reach a deal, the tax increases will be real -- but spending "cuts" probably illusions. If they actually happen, they will only be reductions in already planned increases. The Wall Street Journal notes that when the two parties talk about cutting spending by $4 trillion over a decade, "those numbers have no real meaning because they are conjured in the wilderness of mirrors that is the federal budget process. Since 1974, Capitol Hill's 'baseline' has automatically increased spending every year according to Congressional Budget Office projections ... . Tax and spending changes are then measured off that inflated baseline."
Given our growing debt, can't they even slow the growth of government to the rate of inflation? Or inflation plus 1 percent? Or even inflation plus 2 percent? That might balance the budget within a decade.
But the spenders won't even give me that. They want more. Always more.
Jonathan Bydlak, founder of the Coalition to Reduce Spending, has a good idea. "It's important to do for spending what Norquist has done for taxes: create a means for voters to hold elected officials accountable when they break campaign promises of fiscal responsibility."
Bydlak has no time for any politician who pledges not to raise taxes without pledging to cut spending. He praises Doug Collins, representative-elect from Georgia, and Ted Cruz, senator-elect from Texas, for signing the Reject the Debt pledge and thereby promising voters they would:
"ONE, not vote for any budget that is not balanced nor for any appropriations bill that increases total spending;
"and TWO, consider all spending open for reduction, and not vote to authorize or fund new programs without offsetting cuts in other programs."
Well, sure. Good luck to him.
But people are reluctant to give up their favorite programs. Or any programs.
Let's not fool ourselves about how dependent politicians have made people on government.
To succeed, the crusade to cut spending needs an ideological understanding of how unsustainable our current course is, not just a narrow appeal to short-term self-interest. People will have to see the wisdom of giving up government benefits now -- in exchange for something more abstract: a future free society in which our children won't be burdened by debt and taxes.
5)Rampage Shootings: It’s the Moral Decay of Society, not Guns
It should come as no surprise that the rate of mass shootings at schools and in other public places is increasing not only in the US but other parts of the world.. The surge has nothing to do with guns, which have been widely available in the U.S. for years. Gun control laws have been increasing. Instead, there is a direct correlation between the increase in violence and the gradual degradation of morals, ethics and parenting. We are cultivating mental illness in our society.
Parents are allowing television and video games to increasingly babysit their children, even though both have become full of gratuitous violence. A New York Times study of rampage killers found that six of them were into violent video games. Research shows that violent video games and television desensitize people and promote aggressive behavior, despite claims to the contrary. A research scientist at the University of Michigan found that television was responsible for 10% of youth violence. Parents today are neglecting their children, and when things don’t go well, rushing to get divorced instead of trying to work things out first. Children suffer emotionally when their parents fight or split up. Parents are ignoring their children so much they don’t even see the warning signs that something might be wrong. The New York Times study found that 63 of 100 rampage killers had made threats of violence before the event.
Parents are no longer taking their children to church, where they would learn stability and morals. Fewer than 20% of Americans now regularly attend church. Every year there are 3000 fewer churches across the U.S, even though the population is growing. God and morality have been taken out of the public schools and replaced with political correctness and non-judgmentalism. “Public virtues” are no longer taught in today’s schools. People who do not attend church are more likely than churchgoers to have stress and to be less optimistic about the future. When parents split up and there is no father to take the children regularly to church, the children are much less likely to become regular churchgoers than if their mother regularly takes them.
The New York Times study found that at least half the killers in 100 rampage attacks showed signs of serious mental health problems. 48 killers were formally diagnosed with mental illness, often schizophrenia. The mentally ill used to be kept in hospitals, where they were not a danger to others. Beginning in the 1950s in California, the ACLU successfully filed lawsuits to take the mentally ill out of hospitals, known as “deinstitutionalization.” By the 1980s, most state-run mental health hospitals had closed.
Now, most of the mentally ill are out on the streets or in prison. The laws have been changed to state that the mentally ill cannot be hospitalized until they’ve already attacked someone. As a result, more mentally ill people are incarcerated than in hospitals, with the seriously mentally ill three times more likely to end up behind bars than hospitalized. More than half of all people in prison report that they have mental health problems, and more than 40 percent of the seriously mentally ill have been in jail or prison. A study at the University of South Florida found that the highest users of criminal justice and mental health services were 97 people who had been arrested 2,200 times. It is ludicrous that those 97 people are not contained for their safety and others in mental health hospitals.
The 22-year old Oregon shopping mall gunman who killed two people earlier this week is sadly typical of the rampage murderers the decay of society has spawned. He had this written on his Facebook page, “I’m the conductor of my choo choo train. I may be young but I have lived one crazy life so far.” One of his friends said he raised himself; his mother died at childbirth, he never met his father, and he left his aunt’s home at age 14.
The left will use the high level of emotion stirred up by this past week’s two rampage killings to push through new gun control laws. Liberal New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg called upon President Obama to enact tougher gun control laws immediately after Friday’s mass shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut. Yet demanding more gun control laws will not solve anything. Gun control advocates have already increased the number of laws around the country requiring background checks, waiting periods for purchases, and tracking of firearms. Many of the rampage killers obtained guns illegally. If they can’t obtain guns, deranged individuals will find other ways to commit mass murders – by setting fires, making bombs or running people over with vehicles. One day after the shootings in Connecticut, a man in Beijing stabbed 22 primary school students with a knife.
Paul E. Vallely MG, US Army (ret)
Chairman – Stand Up America
6)Assad’s deadly agenda: First, chemicals, next, Iskander 9K720
On Dec. 5, the first American, Dutch and German Patriot missiles landed in Turkey.
Within hours, three Russian warships had put into Syria’s Tartus port – the Novocherkassk andSaratov landing craft and the MB-304 supply vessel. Aboard were 300 marines. And not only fighting men. They also delivered a fearsome weapon for Assad’s army and a game changer in the Syrian conflict: 24 Iskander 9K720 (NATO codenamed SS-26 Stone) cruise missile systems, designed for theater level conflicts.
While NATO unpacked the Patriots in Turkey, a dozen mobile batteries, each carrying a pair of Iskander missiles, were fixed into position opposite Turkey, and another dozen, opposite Jordan and Israel.
While NATO unpacked the Patriots in Turkey, a dozen mobile batteries, each carrying a pair of Iskander missiles, were fixed into position opposite Turkey, and another dozen, opposite Jordan and Israel.
At all their stations, the Russian missiles pointed at US military targets.
So while the West was gripped with alarm over Assad’s poison sarin gas shells and bombs and gearing up for missile attacks on Turkey, the Russians were injecting into the Syrian war field the most sophisticated weapon of death thus far.
The West and Israel have no answer for the Iskander’s hypersonic speed of more than 1.3 miles per second with a 280 mile-range and a 1,500-pound warhead which destroys targets with pinpoint accuracy. It is also nuclear-capable.
Russian President Vladimir Putin promised two US presidents, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, not to let the Iskander reach the hands of Syria or Iran.
Moscow has no illusions that once in Syria, the lethal cruise missile will pretty soon reach Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Saturday, Dec. 15, Iran’s chief of staff Gen. Hassan Firouzabadi warned that the Patriot missiles in Turkey portended world war. He was referring to the missile-versus-missile face-off in Syria .
By giving Assad the Iskanders, Moscow has plumped itself squarely in the Tehran-Damascus-Hizballah camp, whereas President Obama is carefully holding back from an unreserved commitment to the Syrian insurgency.
Some Western circles see Russia’s military intervention in the Syrian conflict as presaging Bashar Assad’s early downfall. The reality, , is that before he falls, the Syria ruler is getting ready for desperate measures – first by unleashing chemical warfare and, after that, using the deadly Iskanders for a last throw against his enemies