Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Terrorists in India Scoped Out the Taj When After it Tightened Security

Evidently the Taj had been given some threat or warning, and tightened their security.  It seems the terrorists scoped out what tightened security looked like during that period a month or so earlier than the attacks, then knew how to penetrate.

From a CNN report:

A. Vaidyanathan, an economist who was a guest in the hotel when the attacks occurred, told The Hindu newspaper on Friday that he had noticed tight security at the Taj Mahal when he stayed there last month -- a measure he indicated was unusual.

"The last time I went, last month, there was very tight security. You could not get into the [hotel]. There is an entrance there, which is closed. At the entrance to the tower, they had two-level security," he told the newspaper.


Friday, November 28, 2008

Two British-born Pakistanis Among 8 Gunmen Seized in Mumbai

Commentary picked up on the fact that there may have been two British nationals from Pakistan who were among the perpetrators in Mumbai.  From the Telegraph:

Two British-born Pakistanis were among eight gunmen seized by Indian commandos who stormed buildings to free hostages, Vilasrao Deshmukh, the chief minister of Mumbai, reportedly said.

The Foreign Office earlier said it was investigating reports on NDTV, a local television news channel, that the terrorists - who swarmed luxury hotels and other tourist sites in the city - included "British citizens of Pakistani origin".

The development came as Gordon Brown called for international co-ordination to combat terrorism in the wake of the attacks. He said: "We have got to look at how international action against terrorism can be improved."

On the claim that Britons could have been among the perpetrators, he said: "I would not want to be drawn into early conclusions about this.

"Obviously when you have terrorists operating in one country, they may be getting support from another country or coming from another country, and it is very important that we strengthen the co-operation between India and Britain in dealing with these instances of terrorist attacks...."

If true, this lends weight to the argument that the war on terror is a global conflict tantamount to the early days of the cold war where spies and overt proponents of communism lived and wrecked havoc among the those attempting to live peaceably in the West.


Thursday, November 27, 2008

Annual Thanksgiving Remarks

First, an excellent piece on the origin of the American Thanksgiving holiday.  Excerpt below:

"It was the first of many Thanksgivings ordered up by Samuel Adams. Though the holidays were almost always in November or December, the exact dates varied. (Congress didn't fix Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday in November until 1941.)

"In 1778, a Thanksgiving resolution drafted by Adams was approved by Congress on Nov. 3, setting aside Wednesday, Dec. 30, as a day of public thanksgiving and praise, 'It having pleased Almighty God through the Course of the present year, to bestow great and manifold Mercies on the People of these United States.'."

But there is more,...

Secondly, an excerpt from Rick Brookheiser at NRO that expresses a thought about thankfulness about which I concur:

"I am unutterably, and even so insufficiently, grateful that there is something rather than nothing, and that one of the things that is is me — a free, fortuitous, didn't-have-to-happen, once-in-infinity lottery ticket for which I was the lucky winner. Nonexistence would have been so dull, would it not? And even if that's where I'm headed, I hope to be able to say, 'Thanks, it's been real' as I go."

And finally, my own thanks:

Thanks to the Almighty, the One and only ONE, who has intervened in the vain life of this middle class, middle aged man, subject to entropy, but covered with the undeserved riches of a loving family, true friends, employment, and health.  Life is filled with change, but there is One true friend who never changes.

Another Sign of Victory in Iraq

HT: Instapundit; from a military news website:

Here is one of the biggest stories to come out of the Middle East in quite some time.  You probably can’t find it in the New York Slimes or the Washington Compost  (copyright, Mark Levin), but rather on the exceptionally useful web site of our military Voila’:

TIKRIT, Iraq – Eighteen females in northern Iraq who were associated with Al-Qaeda in Iraq suicide bombing cells turned themselves into Coalition forces on Nov. 26.

The females were persuaded by their mullahs and fathers to cease their training in suicide operations and reconcile.

Today, these women took the first step in reconciliation by turning themselves in and signing a reconciliation pledge.

Individuals who turn themselves into CF and want to demonstrate their willingness to cease attacks against the Government of Iraq, Iraqi civilians, Iraqi Security Forces and CF can enter the Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration (DDR) process. Eligible petitioners provide weapons and information on insurgent groups and sign a pledge to cease attacks and declare their support for the GoI.

Let’s start with the dateline:  Tikrit, Saddam Hussein’s home town.  How good is that?  Then comes the really good part:  these women were talked out of terrorism by their fathers and by their mullahs.  So we’re talking about Shi’ites, and the men folk in their town, whether religious or “just dads,” got wind of their daughters’ intentions and talked them out of it.


Monday, November 24, 2008

While We Move Leftward, Venezuela Moves Rightward

It appears Hugo Chavez has been given a shove to the right. From the NYT, HT: NRO:

CARACAS, Venezuela — President Hugo Chávez’s supporters suffered defeat in several state and municipal races on Sunday, with the opposition retaining power in Zulia, the country’s most populous state, and winning crucial races here in the capital, the National Electoral Council said.

Pro-Chávez candidates won 17 of the 22 governor’s races at stake. Many of the seats that Mr. Chavez’s supporters did win were in relatively sparsely populated rural states.

The losses were Mr. Chávez’s second setback at the polls in the past year, after the defeat of a proposed constitutional overhaul last December that would have enhanced his powers. The results will put opponents of Mr. Chávez in charge of areas with more than a third of Venezuela’s 26 million people.

In the early hours of Monday, electoral officials announced opposition victories in two important states, Táchira, on the border with Colombia, and Carabobo, with a large industrial base.

An opposition candidate also won in Sucre, a municipality in Caracas with sprawling slums that had been a symbolic bastion of support for Mr. Chávez since he rose to power a decade ago.

“These victories came in the economic and political centers of the country,” said Luis Vicente León, director of Datánalisis, a polling firm here. “They represent the most important symbols in terms of cities and population.”

Particularly here in Caracas, the results were rooted in festering discontent over the government’s inability to lower violent crime as homicides and kidnappings have surged over the past decade, making it one of the world’s deadliest cities.

China Hacked Into Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Blueprints

Something out of the ‘60’s has returned.  From AIAA HT: BusinessWeek (11/22, Epstein) reported, "A congressionally created commission has warned that China is stealing vast amounts of sensitive information from government and corporate computer networks in the US. ... This theft is part of China's preparation to outmaneuver the US electronically in any future conflict, according to the bipartisan US-China Economic & Security Review Commission. The panel...said in its annual report...'China is targeting U.S. government and commercial computers for espionage.'" According to the report, the "10 most prominent US defense contractors" have been targets of these cyber crimes. "An example of Chinese espionage cited...involves an incident in 2005 in which Chinese cyber-burglars downloaded files about the propulsion system, fuel tanks, and solar panels of NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter."


Sunday, November 23, 2008

Is it 2008-or 1984? - Victor Davis Hanson - The Corner on National Review Online

Is it 2008-or 1984? - Victor Davis Hanson - The Corner on National Review Online

Posted using ShareThis

Friday, November 21, 2008

Attorney General Mukasey on Al Qaeda Detainees and Congress's Duty

Reprint from the WSJ:

Habeas corpus hearings could set terrorists free inside the U.S.


Last June in Boumediene v. Bush, the Supreme Court ruled for the first time in our history that aliens captured and held as enemy combatants abroad (in this case, at the Guantanamo Bay military base) had a constitutional right to challenge their detentions by filing petitions for habeas corpus in federal court. The Court recognized that its holding was unprecedented. Yet it said that it was not deciding how such proceedings should be conducted, or even what the government must show to prevail.

Yesterday, the federal district court in Washington concluded the first such habeas proceeding for six detainees. It held that the government had established a basis for holding only one of them as an enemy combatant. The court acknowledged that the evidence the detainees were planning to travel to Afghanistan to join the fight was perfectly appropriate for use as intelligence (the purpose for which it was collected) -- but that such evidence was not sufficient to carry the government's burden of proving in court that the detainees were enemy combatants.

Of course, we believe that the court should have reached a different conclusion with respect to the five detainees. But on a more general level, the court's order highlights the challenges that inhere in applying a civil litigation framework to wartime decisions that often must be made on the basis of the best available intelligence.

Other federal courts hearing the approximately 250 Gitmo habeas cases have sought to answer similar questions. But as different judges reach different answers -- and as some of those answers, I fear, create risks for our national security -- there remains a pressing need for Congress, working with the administration, to establish one set of rules that is both consistent with the Supreme Court's decision and recognizes the important national security and intelligence interests of the United States.

The questions with which courts have grappled are of critical importance. They include foundational issues: How should we define an "enemy combatant" during a conflict with a nontraditional enemy like al Qaeda? They include trial issues: What evidence may the government rely on when making that determination? And they include practical issues: What does it mean to order a detainee "released"? Can a court order release into the U.S. if a detainee cannot be transferred to his home country, either because it won't accept him or because we fear he might be mistreated upon his return?

In July, I urged Congress to work with the administration to fashion a uniform set of rules for these cases, expressing two basic concerns with leaving these matters to the courts. The first was that the courts would reach inconsistent decisions, leading to protracted litigation and the likelihood of different procedures in different cases.

The second was that the courts would not be well-positioned to address fully our national security and intelligence interests. As a former federal judge, I know well the constraints on federal courts. They cannot find facts on their own and are limited to the evidence presented by the parties before them. By contrast, Congress and the executive branch are well equipped to learn and evaluate facts, and skilled in balancing the difficult policy choices at stake.

In the absence of legislation, however, the courts have proceeded with these cases. I appreciate the difficulty of the task that these judges were given, and I believe they have done an admirable job under the circumstances. Nevertheless, we have seen courts diverging on key issues, meaning that the rules in each case will likely vary significantly and will likely be finally resolved only after multiple appeals.

More importantly, in many cases, the government has faced great difficulty in collecting and presenting evidence in a manner that protects the vital sources and methods upon which our national security depends. Indeed, lacking clear protections for classified information, we have found at times that we are simply unable to provide our best evidence to the court. Our national security framework, in short, is not -- and should not be -- designed primarily to handle the burdens of discovery accompanying ordinary civil litigation.

Although a new president comes to office in January, these cases are moving forward quickly and the need for legislation is urgent. It is not yet too late for Congress, working with both this administration, and members of the incoming administration, to come together to fix this problem and to develop a sensible framework. Contrary to the conventional wisdom, I believe that Americans agree more than they disagree about the principles that should govern this process.

First, Congress must make clear that release from the Guantanamo Bay military base does not mean that a detainee is entitled to enter the United States. Where a court finds that a detainee cannot be held as an enemy combatant, he should be returned to his home country or another country willing to receive him. He should not be permitted to jump the immigration line and enter this country.

Second, habeas corpus proceedings must protect the integrity of classified information and prevent disclosing that information to our enemies. Simply put, Congress should devise rules that allow the government to present the most highly classified information to the courts for their sole review.

We should not be forced to choose between continuing to hold a dangerous detainee and jeopardizing the intelligence sources and methods that Americans have risked their lives to obtain, and which our enemies may then render useless.

Third, Congress should establish sensible and uniform procedures that will eliminate the risk of duplicative efforts and inconsistent rulings, and strike a reasonable balance between the detainees' right to a hearing and our national security needs. Such practical rules must assure that court proceedings do not interfere with the mission of our armed forces.

Federal courts have never before treated habeas corpus as requiring full-dress trials, even in ordinary criminal cases. It would be unwise to do so here, given the grave national security concerns at issue.

Devising a legal framework to review our military's detention decisions is an unprecedented challenge. It should not be left to the courts alone.

I firmly believe that Congress, the administration, and the incoming administration can work together to establish rules that at once provide a fair hearing and are respectful of the nation's security interests. It is not yet too late, and it certainly is worth the effort to try.

Mr. Mukasey is the attorney general of the United States.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

This "Team of Rivals" Business

Courtesy of the Corner, a perspective on Kearns-Goodwin's theory on a "team of rivals" emulating Lincoln in an Obama administration purporting to emulate Lincoln from a history buff:

I really wish someone would check the facts on this Team of Rivals business.  I am just a chemist, but I have been reading Civil War books since I was in third grade.

These are more questions than anything else, and I confess I have not read Kearns-Goodwin's book.  I intend to someday.  I have great respect for her as a historian.  But having said that.....

There seems to be this mythic legend about Lincoln choosing all of his rivals for the nomination for cabinet posts since these were the best and brightest men the country had to offer.  While there is something to that idea, it is not nearly so ideal as the myth.

Some of Lincoln's cabinet appointments may have been a matter of horse-trading.  Lincoln's campaign manager was a man named David Davis, the Karl Rove of his day.  At the convention, as the votes were being taken one round after another, Lincoln sent a telegram to Davis (candidates did not attend the convention in those days) that said, "make no contracts that will bind me."  Davis was shown the telegram by a horrified staffer, since Davis had been making promises right and left.  Davis' reply was basically, "We're here and he's not."  I don't know if that story is in Team of Rivals, but it is in Shelby Foote.  Civil war history begins and ends with Shelby Foote.

One of the rivals was William Seward.  Seward as an able ambitious man and was appointed Sec. of  State.  After initially trying to set himself up as Prime Minister of the Cabinet, Seward eventually became an admirer of Lincoln and carried out his policies.  This is just my opinion, but I think they shared a love of story-telling.  Seward was almost as much of a yarn-spinner as Lincoln and the two seem to have genuinely enjoyed swapping tales.  As I read history, Lincoln did not have many friends.  Seward may have indeed qualified as a friend.  Seward fits into the story of the Team of Rivals.

but on to the rest.

Salmon Chase, ex-Gov of Ohio and rival for the nomination was made Sec. of Treasury.  He was an able ambitious man, with no experience in finance or treasury.  He himself admitted, he did not truly know what he was doing.  He was a stiff humorless man with little respect for Lincoln and I doubt if he ever changed his opinion in that regard.  While Chase was an able Sec of Treasury in his time, when Lincoln became a much more able executive, Chase was replaced with Wm Fessenden of Maine.  Fessenden was also a capable man, anti-slavery, and much easier to deal with than Chase.  Not the least of this was the fact that Fessenden was not a rival for the Presidency.  Lincoln was a man of almost no executive experience.  The largest thing he had ever run was his law office.  It was only his incredible political talent that allowed him to survive his first two years and learn how to be an executive.

Simon Cameron was a rival for the nomination.  Cameron was a Gov. of Pa.  He was appointed Sec. of War.  He didn't last long and was widely regarded as incompetent and corrupt.  No one would have considered Simon Cameron among the countries best and brightest.

Edward (Edwin?) Bates was a Gov. of Mo.  He would have been a rival for the nomination.  Bates was Attorney General.  He was regarded as a poor lawyer.  But, Lincoln regarded himself as a pretty fair constitutional scholar and in a sense in Lincoln's cabinet and Attorney General was redundant.

Gideon Wells was a Conn newspaperman who was made Secretary of the Navy.  Not a rival.  No prior Navel experience.  Although he was effective.  Before the army the Union Navy began to promote young, aggressive commanders (in Farragut's case not so young, but he made up for it with even more aggressiveness.).

Edwin Stanton was appointed Sec. of War after Cameron.  I believe it is Stanton who would have referred to Lincoln as a long-armed ape.  Stanton was in no way a rival for the Presidency.  He was too unlovable to ever be elected Pres on his own, and he knew it.  Stanton was ruthless, devious, merciless, tireless, and efficient.  He was exactly what was needed as a Secretary of War.  He was an excellent compliment to Lincoln.  He was the bad cop.  He was incredibly smart, but not well liked.   By the time of Lincoln's assassination he would have come to almost worship Lincoln.  But, he was not a rival for the nomination in 1860 or in 1864.

Sometimes the best and the brightest don't work out.  John Freemont, the legendary Pathfinder, was given a commission as a General.  He proved to be mostly worthless.  U.S. Grant had been reduced to selling firewood on the streets of St. Louis before the war and was only able to win a commission in the Ill. militia when the war broke out.

I apologize for the long rant.  But I have been getting a bit tired of this team of rivals business.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Lots of Reasons for Scurrying for that Little Bag in the Seat Pocket in Front of You

Reason number one

Reason number two - by the way, when I went to the Reagan inaugural, it only cost me ~ $100.

Reason number three

and the list will go on for awhile, at least another four years or so.


Sunday, November 09, 2008

Obama Begins to Follow Through on Promises to the Left

To those wishful thinking moderates and conservatives who have been saying rather matter-of-factly that Obama only said what he said during the campaign just to get elected, and that he is really much more moderate than meets the eye, to them I say, take a look at this: (HT: The Corner)

Obama himself has signaled, for example, that he intends to reverse Bush's controversial limit on federal funding of embryonic stem cell research, a decision that scientists say has restrained research into some of the most promising avenues for defeating a wide array of diseases, such as Parkinson's.

Bush's August 2001 decision pleased religious conservatives who have moral objections to the use of cells from days-old human embryos, which are destroyed in the process.
But Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) said that during Obama's final swing through her state in October, she reminded him that because the restrictions were never included in legislation, Obama "can simply reverse them by executive order." Obama, she said, "was very receptive to that." Opponents of the restrictions have already drafted an executive order he could sign.

The new president is also expected to lift a so-called global gag rule barring international family planning groups that receive U.S. aid from counseling women about the availability of abortion, even in countries where the procedure is legal, said Cecile Richards, the president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. When Bill Clinton took office in 1993, he rescinded the Reagan-era regulation, known as the Mexico City policy, but Bush reimposed it.

I don't see why we should believe that Obama is going to be any less liberal; than he was in the US Senate where he held the distinction of being the most liberal Senator.  He is going to shock a lot of people in my view, and for a time, with impunity during a honeymoon.


Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Three Reasons Why (I Think) McCain Will Lose Today

1. The candidates are too similar to each other. Sean Hannity is wrong in this when he says there is a stark difference politically between Obama and McCain. McCain is just as likely as Obama to find a government solution to every problem. His solutions may be slightly different than Obama's, but it will still be the government solving people's problems. The nanny state will come with either one, and not much sooner with Obama than McCain.

2. The party perceived as starting a war almost always loses. In the post-World War 2 era, consider this record:

1948: at peace; Democrat returned.

1952: at war in Korea; Republican elected.

1956: at peace; Republican returned.

1960: at peace; Democrat wins by a razor thin margin based on much corrupt voting and daddy's money

1964: at peace; Democrat returned

1968: at war in Vietnam; Republican elected

1972: war in Vietnam almost over; Republican returned

1976: at peace; Democrat wins in post-Watergate backlash against Republican

1980: at peace; Republican wins

1984: at peace (I guess Grenada doesn't count); Republican returned

1988: at peace; Republican returned

1992: Gulf War fought during term; Democrat win

1996: at peace; Democrat returned.

2000: at peace; Republican wins EC while Democrat wins popular vote

2004: at war in Iraq and against terrorism; Republican wins by slim margin--the only time since WW2 that the party who promoted war during the term won.

2008: at war in Iraq/against terrorism; -----------

3. America is, in general, a just and fair nation. We are still atoning for our sins of slavery and post-slavery discrimination. Obama will gain some votes on that basis alone.

Monday, November 03, 2008

A Message from One of the Founding Fathers on this Election Eve

"Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote that he is not making a present or a compliment to please an individual -- or at least that he ought not so to do; but that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country." --Samuel Adams (HT: The Patriot)


Sunday, November 02, 2008

Bits on Biden, Pieces on Palin and other Observations as We Wind Down to Tueday

Some miscellaneous observations from Jennifer Rubin at Commentary:

Nanny-in-chief? So says Roger Kimball.

Valuable time on SNL for John McCain - self-deprecating while actually tweaking his opponents. About as well as a Republican can hope to do.

The Gray Lady’s Public Editor says the MSM shouldn’t predict or assume an Obama victory, but instead report on the campaign as it unfolds. Now he tells us. Next thing you know he’ll tell us they should have investigated the Rashid Khalidi connection or asked Obama harder questions in interviews.

Now and then Maureen Dowd asks a good question: “Why did [John McCain] allow his staff to put Palin on a couture catwalk in a tin-cup economy and then, when the price tags were exposed, trash her as a ‘diva’ and ‘whack job,’ thus becoming the rare Republican campaign devoured by Democratic-style vicious infighting?” If he doesn’t pull a rabbit out of the hat on Tuesday I bet McCain and Hillary Clinton will have plenty to commiserate over.

Just imagine if a Republican had a relative living in poverty, illegally in the U.S. and on public housing to boot. And who gave illegal campaign donations to him. You don’t think ACORN missed her in their registration drive, do you?

You mean Barack isn’t going to bar lobbyists from his administration? Really, it is amazing people bought all the New Politics hooey. Do you thing they’ll be shocked to find out that 95% of people can’t get tax cuts?

John McCain doesn’t much appreciate Obama’s comment that his faith in America was “vindicated” when he won the Iowa caucus. There is something scary about a candidate who equates his country’s virtue with his own political fortunes. This confusion between country and self is not a healthy thing.

Ross Douthat writes of the McCain camp: “It’s been worse than an evil campaign; it’s been a dumb one.” I may disagree with him as what was dumb, but the bottom line is right. True in the micro-sense (where was this for months?) and in the macro-sense (what was the economic message until Joe the Plumber showed up?).

David Frum writes: “To his credit, Biden has conscientiously worked to familiarize himself with the great questions of national policy.” Yes, but the answers are all wrong. (”Learned nothing, yet remembered everything,” as they say of the Bourbons.)

All that effort and, yet, Obama is doing a tad worse than John Kerry among weekly church goers. Gosh, maybe they don’t like his position on abortion, his view of the judiciary and his past associations. It might be that people of faith aren’t easily sold a bill of goods by someone who doesn’t agree with their values. Who would have thought?

There's more.


Saturday, November 01, 2008

A Quadrennial Address on the Eve of the Presidential Election

Honored readers, guests, fellow bloggers, scholars, friends and relatives:

This is the first of what I hope will remain a tradition of short addresses to the fair readership of TSM, God willing, on each weekend before the quadrennial event known as the Presidential Election.

I've noticed something in this election that I have seen before, and I see building gradually, but is now all more prevalent than before, and it concerns me a great deal, and that is the attitude of voters, particularly young voters.  What I have witnessed is a lack of civility and an awful, crass disrespect for people on both sides of the aisle, but particularly against those who support traditional Republican values or people tending to support McCain or other Republican candidates.

There is enormous, hyperbolic disdain, and a never ending torrent of bitterly sarcastic displays in You Tube productions, Twitter feeds, emails, blogs, letters to the editor, articles in periodicals such as Rolling Stone magazine (anything written by Matt Tiabi for example) and in any forum, electronic or otherwise. It is an SNL mentality, but taken to an extreme.  I do believe the electronic media revolution has contributed greatly to this phenomenon.  Spend a few minutes watching and reading the "tweets" on under "election," and you will find at least nine out of ten comments are terribly crass, crude, nasty and overtly prejudiced.

Everyone enjoys a good bit of clever humor, but humor that is a never ending garbage pale tirade at the expense of others, a specific class of people, or specific people, is not all that amusing, and in fact is a bit frightening.  It borders on the kind of behavior exhibited by Hitler Youth before WWII was in earnest.  And which later resulted in the organized snarling at people they didn't like, and eventually led to Krystallnacht escalating to other gross and nasty behaviors prior to our involvement in the war.

The debate at the moment is will these young activist, brash people actually vote, as in years past, they never seemed to materialize at the polls, but I differ with those who think it will be business as usual for them.  I think they will come out, and they will make a difference, and will impact this election, and not really for the better.

Young people surveyed at random and asked about fundamentals of history and democracy seem to be woefully lost.  Yet they will vote in their ignorance, and they will do so with passion and vigor.  It will contribute to the likely and unfortunate result of the election, and the ushering in of a period that will strain the middle class with a greater burden of taxes, with continued chaos in the markets rather than a quelling and a damping effect on the swinging amplitudes, and it will allow bullies to wreck havoc in others parts of the globe with impunity.

Some say maybe we need such a period to recalibrate and reinvigorate the right. I am not of the breed.  I think 4 or 8 years in the wilderness will be very damaging, and leave a legacy of things to fix that will remain on the doorstep of whoever comes later to correct the mess for years to come.

I believe that the growing array of conservatives and so-called conservatives, former Reagan officials, and other prominent Republicans who have announced their support for Obama will result in many if not all of the same regretting their choice, and their public pronouncements.  Obama is so liberal, his Supreme Court nominees will be so liberal, his inaction in the face of world crises affecting Americans will be so isolationists, his "spreading the wealth," his taxation of the middle class, his support for gay marriage, and his many other beliefs and behaviors along these lines too numerous to mention will ultimately embarrass these folks, i.e., the Colin Powell's and Chris Buckley's.

In his second letter to his fellow Christian believer and fellow pastor-teacher Timothy, the historical figure, Saint Paul of Tarsus said, "For a time will come when the people will not endure sound doctrine; but desiring to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves [leaders] in accordance with their own selfish desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will instead grasp hold of myths,..." Obama is a very attractive, smooth talking pol, who has what appears on the surface to be an even temperament, which I understand has been a very attractive characteristic, particularly with women voters.  But what do we really know about this person?  Is this the true man? I think all we have seen is a facade.  What will be the reaction when the real Obama is revealed?  And by then he will have been elected president.

In the most recent Weekly Standard, William Kristol comments on the McCain "juggernaut." 

It's always darkest before it goes totally black. This is one of John McCain's favorite remarks, ascribed (apocryphally, it seems) to Chairman Mao. Well, with ...days to go before the election, it's getting pretty dark out there.

Still, we hope for a McCain-Palin victory, for the sake of the country. And also for the pleasure of seeing the dejection of the mainstream media, the incredulity of the leftwing triumphalists, and the humiliation of the pathetically opportunistic "conservatives" who've been desperately clambering on board the Obama juggernaut. We're proud to stay off that juggernaut. We're proud, in our modest way, to stand with John McCain and Sarah Palin against it.

An Obama-Biden administration--working with a Democratic Congress--would mean a more debilitating nanny state at home and a weaker nation facing our enemies abroad. We, of course, have confidence that the nation would survive such an interlude, and we would even hope that a President Obama might adjust course from the path he's advertised, especially in foreign policy. But the risk of real damage is great, especially when compared with the prospect of a tough-minded center-right McCain-Palin administration that could lead the country sensibly through these difficult times.

I leave you  now to make your respective choices.  Choose wisely, but prepare to gird yourself for not so pleasant outcome.

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