Archive for December 10th, 2008

Newsweek Accused of ‘Journalistic Malpractice’

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

[An] article by Newsweek’s religion editor Lisa Miller contends that “Scripture gives us no good reason why gays and lesbians should not be [civilly and religiously] married — and a number of excellent reasons why they should.” The story declares that “religious objections to gay marriage are not rooted in the Bible at all…but in custom and tradition.”

Bob Knight, director of the Culture and Media Institute, believes there is ample evidence of media bias on the marriage issue, but calls this example one of the worst he has seen. Knight says Newsweek published a “cartoon version of Scripture that is a gay activist’s dream.”

“It would be one thing if people promoting the homosexual agenda just said, ‘Look, the Bible says it’s wrong. We don’t buy into the Bible’s authority, and so we don’t agree with you.’ But to try to take the Bible and make it say something it flat-out does not say is journalistic malpractice,” he argues. “You’re talking about the religion editor at Newsweek magazine and a cover piece twisting scripture, using every gay talking point out there without any effective rebuttal.”

Original Link.

“Time to Laugh at Obama and Company” by Ben Shapiro

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

How many Americans does it take to screw in a light bulb? According to President-elect Barack Obama, 2.5 million. Obama has a new plan, he says, to save or create at least 2.5 million jobs. “We need to upgrade our federal buildings by replacing old heating systems and installing efficient light bulbs,” Obama said. “That won’t just save you, the American taxpayer, billions of dollars each year. It will put people back to work.”

This is inherently hilarious. The president-elect of the United States actually believes that screwing in energy-efficient light bulbs will save or create millions of jobs. Now, screwing in light bulbs isn’t exactly a full-time occupation. And those unemployed former Lehman Brothers stockbrokers, those fired writers at Time Magazine, and those Citigroup administrators might be a tad overqualified to do janitorial work. But Obama truly thinks that he can single-handedly create jobs by pushing road building and retrofitting.

Obama’s delusions of grandeur are the stuff of which comedians’ dreams are made. Can you imagine the delight at “Saturday Night Live” if President George W. Bush suggested screwing in light bulbs as a solution the economic crisis? There would be more than one joke suggesting that Bush is a “dim bulb.”

But comics never touch Obama. After Obama selected former rival Hillary Clinton for his secretary of state, “Saturday Night Live” didn’t parody his newfound respect for his hated opponent — it parodied Clinton. Then it ran a grievously unfunny skit suggesting that Obama’s style is to “keep it cool,” which is more of a campaign commercial than a sketch.

So far, Leno, Letterman, Stewart and Colbert haven’t laid a finger on the president-elect, who is smarmy and saccharine enough to sicken Cookie Monster. They haven’t targeted his “hope and change,” which so far has consisted of hiring leftovers from the Bush and Clinton administrations. They haven’t discussed his flip-flopping on taxes and immediate pullout from Iraq. They haven’t even mentioned his ridiculous refusal to come clean on his smoking habit. Even the Los Angeles Times, a central diocese in the Obama church, has caught on to the fact that “the nation’s comedy writers still seem incapable of or adverse to making fun of (Obama).”

During the 2008 presidential campaign, comedians lampooned Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., on a regular basis. They had a field day with Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. Comedians even went after Vice President-elect Joe Biden on occasion, though with less alacrity than we had a right to expect, given Biden’s verbal diarrhea and constant gaffing.

But they kept their paws off of Obama. Obama is the Untouchable One. Though he has all the hallmarks of a balloon ripe for the pricking, he has been left alone by the comic world.

There’s a reason for that: The comic world is overwhelmingly dominated by the left. Though they like to portray themselves as gadflies dedicated to targeting everyone equally, comedians are pure Hollywood. They donate to the Democrats, they attack the Republicans, and then they claim that they remain nonpartisan.

Original Link.

“The Democratic Culture of Corruption” by Michelle Malkin

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

Howard Dean and Nancy Pelosi can stop clucking now. For the last three years, Democratic leaders cheered GOP ethics woes. Dean accused Republicans of making “their culture of corruption the norm.” Pelosi touted cleanliness as a liberal virtue. But with the eye-popping pay-for-play and bribery case against Democratic Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich topping a year of nationwide Democratic scandals, the corruption chickens are coming home to roost.

U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald called the breadth and depth of charges against Blagojevich and his Democratic Chief of Staff John Harris “staggering.” That’s an understatement. Anything that breathed was a potential shakedown target. It’s the Chicago way. Democrat Blago’s so dirty he’d hit up a children’s hospital for money. Oh, wait. He’s accused of doing that, too.

Democrat Blago allegedly conspired to use his power to appoint President-elect Barack Obama’s vacant Senate seat as a bargaining chip for financial payment. He explored trading on that authority for an appointment as Health and Human Services secretary or as an ambassador or for installment in a cushy union position. (He discussed his trading scheme with an unnamed “SEIU (Service Employees International Union) official” and unnamed “various consultants” in Washington.)

According to the criminal complaint released yesterday, he also tried to leverage his influence over the sale of Wrigley Field (owned by Tribune media company) in an attempt to get Chicago Tribune editorial writers who called for his impeachment fired — which illustrates the very perils of media/government entanglements I warned about in my newspaper bailout column last week. His wife, Patricia Blagojevich, was apparently in on the thuggery, too. Taking a break from her first lady duties advocating “on behalf of women and children,” she is heard in taped discussions about the Chicago Tribune/Wrigley Field deal telling a governor’s aide “to hold up that [edited] Cubs [edited] … [edited] them.”

Pelosi, champion of women as political cleaner-uppers, was unavailable for comment.

Fitzgerald says President-elect Obama was not implicated in the plethora of charges against Democrats Blago and Harris. The national media went out of their way to absolve him, too. But declaring Team Obama’s hands clean — especially with Blago crony and indicted Obama donor Tony Rezko in the middle of it all — is premature. (And if you’re wondering why I keep putting “Democrat” in front of the accused corruptocrats, it’s because the mainstream newspapers can’t seem to remember to identify their party prominently the way they do when Republicans are nabbed.)

Original Link.

“This is What Patriotism Looks Like” by Michelle Malkin

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

A naturalized American from Korea loses his entire family in the military jet crash that wrecked his house and killed his infant daughter, toddler daughter, wife, and mother-in-law. But he refuses to blame the pilot or bash the military. Reader Mitch in San Diego e-mails: “I’m not even religious and I’ll say a prayer for this man. He has my utmost admiration. Truly an amazing gesture of forgiveness and patriotism on his part. There would be no discussion about immigration, illegal or otherwise, if this was the caliber of most coming here. Amazing.”

Keep Dong Yun Yoon in your prayers:

A Korean immigrant who lost his wife, two children and mother-in-law when a Marine Corps jet slammed into the family’s house said Tuesday he did not blame the pilot, who ejected and survived.

“Please pray for him not to suffer from this accident,” a distraught Dong Yun Yoon told reporters gathered near the site of Monday’s crash of an F/A-18D jet in San Diego’s University City community.

“He is one of our treasures for the country,” Yoon said in accented English punctuated by long pauses while he tried to maintain his composure.

“I don’t blame him. I don’t have any hard feelings. I know he did everything he could,” said Yoon, flanked by members of San Diego’s Korean community, relatives and members from the family’s church.

Authorities said four people died when the jet crashed into the Yoon family’s house while the pilot was trying to reach nearby Marine Corps Air Station Miramar. Another, unoccupied house also was destroyed.

Yoon named the victims as his infant daughter Rachel, who was born less than two months ago; his 15-month-old daughter Grace; his wife, Young Mi Yoon, 36; and her 60-year-old mother, Suk Im Kim, who he said had come to the United States from Korea recently to help take care of the children.

Fighting back tears, he said of his daughters: “I cannot believe that they are not here right now.”
“I know there are many people who have experienced more terrible things,” Yoon said. “But, please, tell me how to do it. I don’t know what to do.”

… Yoon’s wife came to the United States about four years ago, Shin said.

Yoon spoke softly when he talked about his wife.

“It was God’s blessing that I met her about four years ago. She was a lovely wife and mother,” he said.

His voice fading, he added: “She loves me and babies. I just miss her so much.”

Original Link.

Obama’s Planned Assault on Personal Freedom Via Control of the Internet

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

Our friend, Jennifer Rast, over at the Scriptorium brings the latest Obama plan for his assault on our person freedoms, this time by regulating your use of the internet.

Newspapers are widely covering a report by the Center for Strategic and International Studies calling for Obama to appoint a “Cyberspace Czar” to oversee cyberspace security. And in the words of the New York Times article, “License plates may be coming to cyberspace.”

The Center for Strategic and International Studies, whose chairman is Obama advisor Sam Nunn and whose President and CEO is John J Hamre, who was a possible candidate for Secretary of Defense under Obama. One of the members of the board of trustees is our old friend and Obama advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski. The report’s recommendations are unsurprisingly expected to be fast tracked through the Obama administration.

To quote the New York Times story,

The report, which offers guidance to the Obama administration, is a strong indictment of government and private industry efforts to secure cyberspace to date. “The laissez-faire approach to cyber-security has failed,” Mr. Kellermann said.

So naturally it’s time to stop all that laissez-faire internet, and crack the whip.

The report’s recommendations emphasize taking away cybersecurity from DHS in order to create a special department to oversee cybersecurity. It recommends ending the division between civilian and national security systems. And calls for establishing “international norms” when it comes to the internet.

And it focuses a good deal on identity verification, not just for Federal employees, but for ordinary Americans as well.

The report urges a move away from passwords, and toward physical identity verification, via a device that would verify an individual’s identity. And calls for “government issued credentials” to be used by consumers.

From Page 14 of the report.

17. The United States should allow consumers to use strong government-issued credentials (or commercially issued credentials based on them) for online activities.

Under the Bush Administration such a proposal would have produced hysterical rhetoric from the press and the left. Now they think that license plates coming to cyberspace is a fantastic idea.

The report proposes a model that would have consumers use Federally issued credentials for online transactions, in the way that some businesses currently require driver’s licenses and social security numbers for commercial transactions, with businesses choosing to downgrade customers who refuse to use it.

Original Link.

“Responding to the Relentless Liberal Tide” by David Limbaugh

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my 55 years, it’s that liberals are relentless and will win through sheer persistence if conservatives abandon the fight.

The incoming U.S. government stands poised to forever alter the balance between governmental power and individual liberties and to replace the free market economy with socialist planning.

And what do we hear from many conservatives? That we should be encouraged that President-elect Obama has announced certain key centrist appointees and that we should convince ourselves this means he will not pursue the agenda he plainly tells us he will pursue. Savvy liberals must be laughing themselves silly.

Pro-life forces have made inroads into the collective consciousness and against the abominable practice of abortion, and they’ve been gratified by the appointments of two strict constructionist justices in Roberts and Alito. That said, Americans have just elected the most life-hostile president in our history, who got a complete pass on social issues during the campaign and who might be in a position to appoint three or more liberal activist judges.

But what are many conservatives saying? That Republicans got trounced because of the Christian right’s uncompromising positions on social issues. That analysis doesn’t square in theory (the majority of Americans are not pro-choice) or in reality (social issues were on the backburner in the national election, and social conservatism triumphed in state ballot initiatives, even in the liberal California).

Liberal secularists tell us Christians are insinuating themselves into government and thereby are threatening our liberties by intruding on the sacred prohibition against church-state interaction. They say our liberty tradition is grounded in secularism.

The depth of their historical and constitutional misapprehensions are only exceeded by the blindness today on both sides of the ideological spectrum as to what is actually going on in this area. Secularists continue virtually unchecked in their indefatigable quest to purge Christianity from the public square.

Read the rest of the article here.

Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich Arrested on Corruption Charges

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

And the scandals begin…

Gov. Rod Blagojevich and his chief of staff, John Harris, were arrested today by FBI agents for what U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald called a “staggering” level of corruption involving pay-to-play politics in Illinois’ top office.

Blagojevich is accused of a wide-ranging criminal conspiracy, including alleged attempts by the governor to try to sell or trade the U.S. Senate seat left vacant by President-elect Barack Obama in exchange for financial benefits for the governor and his wife. Blagojevich also is accused of obtaining campaign contributions in exchange for other official actions.

Blagojevich was taken into federal custody at his North Side home this morning–one day shy of his 52nd birthday.

At a news conference late this morning, Fitzgerald said Blagojevich “has taken us to a truly new low” and went on “a political corruption crime spree. We acted to stop that crime spree.”
Fitzgerald also accused Blagojevich of attempting “to sell the U.S. Senate seat” that President-elect Barack Obama vacated.

Robert Grant, FBI special agent in charge of the Chicago office, said the arrest of Blagojevich should serve as notice that “business as usual will no longer be tolerated. That selling your office for personal gain is a thing of the past.”

Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn today called on Blagojevich to step aside, at least temporarily, because the governor is “seriously impeded from carrying out his oath of office.”

“I think that should certainly be considered by the governor today. I think he knows what he needs to do for the people,” Quinn said at a news conference this afternoon.

Quinn would assume control of the governor’s office if Blagojevich were to step aside under the Illinois Constitution.

Obama told reporters he was “saddened and sobered” by Blagojevich’s arrest.

“I was not aware of what was happening,” Obama said. “I had no contact with the governor or his office and so I was not aware of what was happening.”

Original Link.

WASHINGTON — The federal corruption allegations against Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich cast an embarrassing glare on the world of Chicago politics he shares with President-elect Barack Obama, even though the two Democrats aren’t close and there is no suggestion Obama did anything inappropriate.

The case will keep the public spotlight on some episodes Obama thought he had put behind him, including his ties to Antoin Rezko, a convicted Chicago real-estate developer who was accused in a Federal Bureau of Investigation affidavit Tuesday of scheming with Blagojevich. Rezko raised campaign funds for both men, and was one of Obama’s earliest supporters as he was climbing the political ladder in Illinois.

The matter also highlights ties between the disgraced Democratic governor and some members of Obama’s inner circle. His top campaign strategist, David Axelrod — who will move to the White House for a senior adviser’s job — lists Blagojevich on his firm’s Web site as one of his clients, when the politician was a candidate for Congress.

And because Blagojevich stands accused of trying to sell the U.S. Senate seat vacated by the president-elect, Obama’s name will be forever linked to the case, even though he isn’t accused of wrongdoing.

Chicago has been home to some of the country’s most notorious corrupt politicians as well as some leading political reformers. Obama throughout his career has tried to portray himself as being firmly in the latter camp, while critics have repeatedly tried to tie him to the “Chicago machine” environment that shaped his early political career.

Original Link.