Archive for the ‘Rahm Emanuel’ Category

I was planning to post a bit more about how the ATF’s Operation Fast and Furious had led to just about zero with regards to repercussions for the perpetrators, and how their criminal enterprise that armed Mexican narcoterrorists had led to the deaths of hundreds of Mexican citizens and US Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, who died two years ago tonight, killed by a gun smuggled by his own government.

And then today, a lunatic in Connecticut went out and killed his mother, some teachers, and a class full of kindergarteners.  There are no words available to console the families, and even stating that one can cannot convey sorrow sounds trite and cliche.  There really is no way to convey the unfathomable sorrow and grief and shock that the families are in right now, or to convey aid in any words.  There is nothing that can be said to console them.  With time, perhaps one could offer a shoulder to lean on, arms to cry in, and ears to listen.  Today, there is nothing.

Mary Katherine Ham over at HotAir has a good rundown on today’s news, for the rare few who haven’t been glued to their TV, radio, or the internet today.

The reactions, beyond shock, sorrow, and disgust, have been the immediate knee jerk leftist desire to dance on the graves of the victims to push their anti-gun, anti-rights agenda.  It would be nice to live in a world where that wasn’t the case, but sadly it is.

Today’s lunatic criminal is on the level of the Port Arthur Massacre, in which an Australian man, who was reportedly driven in part by the media reports of the Scottish Dunblane School Massacre, to go out and commit a greater act of violence.  Already a madman, he identified another madman and sought to outdo the lunatic in Scotland.  By the end of the Port Arthur Massacre, 35 people had been murdered and 23 more wounded.

The effects would be long-lasting, as the Australian government reacted in knee-jerk fashion by going after their citizens’ gun rights.  Some classes of firearms were outright banned, others regulated and regulated until they drove out hobbyists, competitive shooters, and those who believed in Orwell’s statement that the rifle on the cabin wall insures democracy.  Today, Australia has incredibly strict gun control laws, which, as usual, only have an effect on law-abiding citizens.  The end result was that one madman’s rampage and a knee-jerk reaction from government resulted in harm for the entire nation.

Today, with the president, already known to be vehemently anti-gun, crying and saying that action MUST be taken, we stand on that same precipice, under threat of loss of rights.

When I was in college, I took many Russian culture, history, and language classes.  One day in early 1999, a professor told us of how when she was a student in Russia decades before, she had a professor who spoke of US aid to Russia during  WWII.  The professor had spoken well of lend-lease and of how the United States had aided the Soviet Union during the war years.  The professor was soon gone, whisked away by the government.

In April of 1999, two lunatics at Columbine High School in Colorado shot up their school, killing classmates and teachers and eventually themselves.  In class, my professor spoke about it, wistfully noting how it was terrible that kids could get guns and how that would never happen in the old country.

I reminded her of the story of her professor that she had told us just a few days prior, and how he had been “disappeared”, along with hundreds and thousands and hundreds of thousands and millions of people by the state.  In a moment, she understood, and replied simply with “oh”.

None of the lives lost at Columbine were any less important than those sent to camps to die – all were human lives killed by malevolent forces.  The difference is that one malevolent force – that of a murderous madman, can never be truly contained or completely mitigated. Every single death at the hands of a madman is tragic, but ultimately a madman is limited in scale.  In contrast, the malevolent force of a murderous government is nigh unlimited in scale, and can last not merely for the course of a single rampage, but can last for years, decades, and generations, committing murders on a scale that no lone madman or pair of lunatics can possibly match.

With that simple comparison, she understood in an instant that the power of a government can be held in check by an armed populace (and even a madman can sometimes be held in check by an armed populace, as seen at the New Life Church in Colorado, the Appalachian Law School, and even at the University of Texas tower shooting).  The loss of life from a government with monopoly of force vastly outweighs that of individual criminals across the history of mankind; and the good citizen being disarmed enables criminal and evil men, and criminal and evil governments.

None of this is consolation to the victims of an individual madman or criminal, but it needs to be brought up as a reminder that any knee-jerk response to blame tools of a massacre cannot stop future massacres; but that denying free men the right to bear arms can ensure that there will be future massacres.

If you’ve never seen this before, please take a few minutes to watch.  The woman speaking is Dr. Suzanna Hupp, who survived the Luby’s Massacre in Kileen, TX.  Both of her parents were murdered there.

“The Second Amendment is not about duck hunting, and I know I’m not going to make very many friends saying this, but it’s about our right, all of our right to be able to protect ourselves from all of you guys up there.”

-Dr. Suzanna Hupp

Update: The written word has no tone, only that which a skillful writer can imbue, and an adept reader can discern.  Upon rereading this post, I want to make sure it isn’t read in a tone that sounds harsh or callous.  The first part is to those suffering; and to them I would say little else.  No one can.  The second and following parts are to everyone else, standing back from the situation even if a bit, and beginning to think about the longer view.  Even that in and of itself may sound callous.

In 2005, friends in my platoon were hit by an IED and injured.  Two received Purple Hearts for what we would ultimately learn were minor injuries, but that was unknown to us at the time.  My response to their injuries was to push on, repair damage my vehicle had incurred and address what I could do.  I had no control over what happened to my injured friends, as I have no control over the injured, traumatized, and grieving here.  Nothing I can do can aid them (prayer may help, but I don’t wear that on my sleeve).  The only thing I can perhaps do is offer some perspective and prevent greater tragedy in the very long run.

Any knee-jerk response against guns may be well-intentioned by some, but is purely controlling, malicious, and calculated by others.  Any knee-jerk response towards greater control by mental health professionals as an attempt to prevent madmen from going on rampages needs to address the fact that the mental health profession lives in a glass house.

There will be time to understand what all went wrong (some reports note that after classes began, the school was locked down, which leads to wondering how does a madman in tactical gear carrying guns get buzzed in), but there will be some more eager to “never let a good crisis go to waste” in the words of Barack Obama’s former Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.

Update 2: Port Arthur revisited.

rupert murdoch twitter gun ban

Update 3: Sebastian at PAGunBlog sums up the feelings of most rights supporters.

Wouldn’t It Be Nice?

As gun owners, if we could just experience the grief and sorrow along with the rest of the country, instead of having it intruded upon by that impending feeling of doom about what the media, the politicians, and the people in society who don’t much care for civilian gun ownership are going to do to our lives, liberty and often times livelihood? If we could go through something like this without worrying how much we’re going to be the scapegoats? I know that’s the thought that’s been crossing my mind as this entire horror story is playing out in the media. I don’t want to think about or deal with politics right now, but that’s precisely what I have to start getting ready for if I don’t want to risk that America, and the politicians who claim to represent her, in their rashest and most impulsive worst instincts, pass a knee jerk law that will overnight turn many Americans into instant felons. There are times I believe we all deserve a break from politics. This is one of them, but we will never get it.

I believe we will not leave this horror unscathed, either mentally or politically. Our liberties and beliefs will be called into question, ridiculed, beaten, and we’ll be told to get in line for the good of everyone. This could very well be the point as which the pendulum swings back. The narrative that’s been driven home is that NRA is beaten up and bloodied, and is no longer relevant. Regardless of whether that’s true or not, what matters is what the powers that be believe. We may not believe the time now is for politics, and it shouldn’t be. But as a variation on an old saying goes: we may not be interested much in politics, but politics is very interested in us.

Reposted in its entirety, because it’s so much worth reading to understand the sentiment.

Drudge linked to this Pravda story yesterday, and some talk radio guys brought it up today as a very telling point.

Putin in 2009 outlined his strategy for economic success. Alas, poor Obama did the opposite but nevertheless was re-elected. Bye, bye Miss American Pie. The Communists have won in America with Obama but failed miserably in Russia with Zyuganov who only received 17% of the vote. Vladimir Putin was re-elected as President keeping the NWO order out of Russia while America continues to repeat the Soviet mistake.

After Obama was elected in his first term as president the then Prime Minister of Russia, Vladimir Putin gave a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in January of 2009. Ignored by the West as usual, Putin gave insightful and helpful advice to help the world economy and saying the world should avoid the Soviet mistake.

Recently, Obama has been re-elected for a 2nd term by an illiterate society and he is ready to continue his lies of less taxes while he raises them. He gives speeches of peace and love in the world while he promotes wars as he did in Egypt, Libya and Syria. He plans his next war is with Iran as he fires or demotes his generals who get in the way.

Now, it’s important to point out that this is Pravda, which dishes out just slightly less propaganda than MSNBC, and that they’d be saying something derogatory along some lines no matter who the President was.  Unless it was Putin.

But it’s very much worth noting that Pravda is hyping Russia’s successes by Putin taking their economy away from Soviet policies rather than towards them.  Putin is a ruthless strongman, but he’s neither stupid nor infected with stupid ideologies.  He knows how power works, but he also knows how the Soviet economic system didn’t work.  The man is not a fool.

Pravda’s condemnation of the US as an illiterate society is one that’s a very sharp criticism, though, and one that isn’t without merit.  Consider the Curley Effect (HT/Andrew Wilkow), from Mark Hendrickson at Forbes earlier this year:

It’s hard to think of anything more perverse in American politics than the Curley effect. The Curley effect historically has been an urban phenomenon, but President Obama seems bent on taking the entire country down this wretched path.

As defined by Harvard scholars Edward L. Glaeser and Andrei Shleifer in a famous 2002 article, the Curley effect (named after its prototype, James Michael Curley, a four-time mayor of Boston in the first half of the 20th century) is a political strategy of “increasing the relative size of one’s political base through distortionary, wealth-reducing policies.” Translation: A politician or a political party can achieve long-term dominance by tipping the balance of votes in their direction through the implementation of policies that strangle and stifle economic growth. Counterintuitively, making a city poorer leads to political success for the engineers of that impoverishment.

Here’s an example of how the Curley effect works: Let’s say a mayor advocates and adopts policies that redistribute wealth from the prosperous to the not-so-prosperous by bestowing generous tax-financed favors on unions, the public sector in general, and select corporations. These beneficiaries become economically dependent on their political patrons, so they give them their undivided electoral support—e.g., votes, campaign contributions, and get-out-the-vote drives.

Meanwhile, the anti-rich rhetoric of these clever demagogues, combined with higher taxes to fund the political favors, triggers a flight of tax refugees from the cities to the suburbs. This reduces the number of political opponents on the city’s voter registration rolls, thereby consolidating an electoral majority for the anti-wealth party. It also shrinks the tax base of the city, even as the city’s budget swells. The inevitable bankruptcy that results from expanding expenditures while diminishing revenues can be postponed for decades with the help of state and federal subsidies (“stimulus” in the Obama vernacular) and creative financing, but eventually you end up with cities like Detroit—called by Glaeser and Shleifer “the first major Third World city in the United States.”

The Curley Effect is a vile strategy to destroy populations in order to rule them.  Like Obama’s former chief of staff and current dictator-for-life of Chicago famously said: “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”  The Curley Effect is to create the crisis in order to profit from it.  That anyone could consider a crisis “good” speaks volumes by itself, but this is more about the practical and less about the downright morally villainous.

Putin doesn’t have to use the Curley Effect to gain power.  He has it already.

Obama and the Democrat party are using the destructive Curley Effect to increase his own power nationwide.

A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations has been 200 years.

- Attributed to Alexis de Tocqueville

Obama’s operation is to create and exploit that crisis and ride it down as he becomes the new socialist leader, the indispensible man with the cult of personality surrounding him.  He’s already Jamie Foxx’s god, lord and savior.  Obama and his acolytes are believers in their own ideology, that “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for”, and at best their idealistic naivity will lead them down a road to hell, at worst, and most likely, as they aren’t all fools, they intend it.  Again, consider that someone can find a crisis, in which there is human suffering, a “good thing” that shouldn’t be passed up as an opportunity to be exploited for further expansion of political power.

This isn’t “never let a mistake by a totalitarian regime that can be exploited to preserve or restore individual freedom go to waste”.  A lot of people could get on board with that one.  Probably not Putin or Obama. though.

In the past, I’ve referred to leftists as inflicting suffering on the public like Munchausen by proxy.  Ideologically, the do-gooder planner types who are true believers in leftist causes are so deluded they can’t see what they’re working towards.  They can’t see that they’re making people dependent through welfare or handouts or bailouts, and they refuse to believe it.  They can understand why the Forest Service says “don’t feed the bears”.  They can’t understand why making people dependent on others is a bad thing, though.

Thomas Sowell has written extensively on how the black community went from improving and doing well into a hellish spiral of failure especially because of LBJ’s “Great Society” that incentivized self-destructive behaviors.  LBJ understood the Curley Effect, and used it to great effect.

“I’ll have those n*ggers voting Democratic for the next 200 years.” — Lyndon B. Johnson to two governors on Air Force One according Ronald Kessler’s Book, “Inside The White House”

LBJ was promising other people’s money, LBJ did plenty of downright reprehensible things while he was in the White House, and all of those are looked at as “good things”, though they so often had the exact opposite effect of what they were sold as.  They hurt people, but they elevated the redistributor in government to that of indispensible hero to the lower classes (and there became a greater distinction, and more people in the lower classes as well.)

More from the Forbes piece:

Everything Obama has done has been designed to strengthen Democratic constituencies (e.g., stimulus spending steered predominantly toward unions and strategically allied state and municipal entities; waivers from Obamacare for unions; a hefty 23 percent increase in the Index of Dependence on Government during Obama’s first two years) and to weaken Republican constituencies (e.g., making small business formation more difficult by impeding venture capitalists; refusing to amend Sarbanes-Oxley; using Dodd-Frank regulations to discourage loans; fewer waivers from Obamacare; proposing lower tax rates for large corporations, but not on the “S” corporations that are the preferred choice of small business owners; constant efforts to raise taxes on the “rich”—which means, as we’ve seen in Detroit, California, and other Curley effect victims, higher taxes on the middle class).

Obama’s smash-mouth, Curley-like politics is all about choosing winners and losers. Reread his State of the Union address from January, and you see a parade of proposals to take from A to give to B, to encourage businesses to do C and discourage them from doing D. Indeed, Obama seems incapable of suggesting a single economic policy that does not redistribute wealth from his political opponents to his political allies. The message is clear: He wants Americans to be dependent on the government; consequently, he is hostile to the private sector, because a vibrant private sector enhances economic independence and self-reliance.

The idea of a multi-tiered class system is almost wholly communist as well, as communism needs class warfare to exist.  America is supposed to be a classless society.  We don’t need more upper, middle, or lower class people.  Americans are given the freedom to choose where they want to be in life.  Vicissitudes of life often mean that one starts off worse off, or one may have worse luck, or one may have better luck or simply work harder and make their way better – but the fundamental difference is that everyone gets a shot, and gets to work to where they want to be – and where they want to be is dependent only on how hard they work and how intelligently they work towards where they want to be.

The idea of income redistribution in order to create “a level playing field” or to make sure the rich have “skin in the game” is wholly unAmerican.  The rich, as well as those with middle incomes, already have a lot of taxes paid in, and therefore have “skin in the game”.  The poor who receive government handouts, don’t have skin in the game.  They’re simply mooching, and using their need and communist rhetoric to demand more.  “Leveling the playing field” and such nonsense is possibly even more destructive than simple redistribution.  The idea of raising taxes on high income earners is a political winner because those who’ve earned their priviledge are viewed through communist lenses as worthy of scorn and persecution.

But what it really does, especially when parroted by dirtbags like “the sage of Omaha” Warren Buffet, is to crush those coming up.  It’s a barrier to entry for small businesses by taxing them higher, so it protects big businesses.  It’s a class barrier against new people who are improving their lot, and it crushes the small businesses that pay the wages and salaries of those who are middle and lower income earners who are working their way up.

This is very similar to how the Congress and Senate often come up with new investment laws and “windfall profit” taxes after they’ve made their money in a given industry (CA Senator Boxer is known for her oil investments, for example).

All of it leads to a permanence of class – the socialist redistributor upper class with their favored businesses, the “middle class” serf who works to pay the socialist, and the serf who lives on handouts taken from the “middle class” serf and redistributed by the indispensable socialist.

Even Pravda can see that’s stupid.

From the Washington Times:

Top Illinois state officials said Tuesday they’ll push to issue driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants — a move backed also by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who for years stood as Democrats’ key impediment to pushing immigration in Congress.

State Senate President John Cullerton said he’ll try to pass a bill in the legislature’s veto session next week to remove restrictions on illegal immigrants getting licenses there, and Gov. Pat Quinn said he’ll sign it, if it reaches his desk. Both men are Democrats.

Illinois would become the third state to allow illegal immigrants to get licenses, joining Washington and New Mexico.

“I strongly support state legislation that will allow every Chicagoan, regardless of legal status, to enjoy the rights and responsibilities that come with a driver’s license,” Mr. Emanuel, President Obama’s first White House chief of staff, said in a statement.

Now, I could go on for quite a while about how Congress writes immigration laws, and how that’s part of the Constitution.  I could go on for quite a while about the effects of drunk driving illegal aliens, of criminal aliens, and how illegal aliens are criminals with their first steps into the country they’re invading.  I could go on and on and on about that, comparing other nations’ immigration laws (Mexico’s are particularly harsh, and allow for citizen detention of non-Mexicans they catch), and make this solely about illegal immigration and the pandering of Democrats for more illegal alien voters is.

Instead, I’ll just quote these folks who think driver’s licenses are important:

“Eighteen of the nineteen 9/11 terrorists boarded those airplanes using driver’s licenses they never should have been issued,” said CSDL President Amanda Bowman. “After the attacks, it was learned that the terrorists possessed 63 licenses from states all across the country. And it was clear why they got them: The driver’s license is America’s internal passport, our de facto national identification card that allows holders access to airplane travel, truck rental, sensitive government and commercial buildings, wire transfers and a host of other terrorism tools and targets. The driver’s license is a terrorist weapon of choice, and Congress must act on that reality,” Ms. Bowman continued.

 

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{{w|Eric Massa}}, member of the United States ...Image via Wikipedia

After resigning from Congress, Eric Massa is being interviewed by Glenn Beck.

He claims to being forced to resign due to not following the party line (the democrat one) and giving a “yes” vote for healthcare. He is being accused of sexual harrasment by staff members, and that is the “official” reason for his resignation. He also makes a claim that he was confronted by Rahm Emmanuel, the White House Chief of Staff, and told to vote with the president on healthcare.

Here is what I know of Eric Massa:

So, we have a gentleman who tells us he will not represent his constituents interest whether they want a single payer system or not (which was on the table at the time). For that alone he should resign. Elected representatives are elected by their constituents to represent their interest in their state capitals or in Washington D.C. If they falter representing their voter’s interested they usually find themselves out of office.

Recently Massa changed his mind of Healthcare going on the record he would not vote for healthcare, in doing so, he was going directly against the White House. So why did he change? My guess is the single payer system was no longer in the bill. In simpler terms, the healthcare legislation is not radical enough for him.

So what is his game? I don’t think he has any telling information to go after Rahm Emmanuel or expose anything on corruption within the federal government. The guy doesn’t seem to be genuine at all, Beck is currently apologizing to his viewers for wasting their time. The key factor is that Massa was wiling to turn gainst his party for not being radical enough. At the same time he charges that the Obama administration is forcing to vote in line with White House wishes, regardless of how he feels on the issues. Isn’t that what he bascially told his constiutents in that video from last August?

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