Monthly Archives: May 2008

Sarandon’s out? (Glenn Beck)

 

The media has already pulled out on the story of Iraq, and they are sticking to the storyline that it’s a complete failure. All politicians, for or against the war, say what a great job the troops are doing—the translation that the media doesn’t give you is that ‘great job’ includes killing tons of terrorists. So much so that the head of the CIA is saying that Al-Qaeda is near defeat in Iraq and overall. This is the kind of news story that has people like Susan Sarandon threatening that if John McCain wins, and continues this horrible war that’s beating the terrorists, she will move to Italy or Canada. Let’s hope it’s Italy because it’s much, much farther away. No word on if she’ll take Tim Robbins with her.

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No End Of Bile From Obama’s Bully Pulpits

By INVESTOR’S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Friday, May 30, 2008 4:20 PM PT

Decision ’08: Everybody knows the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and his bigoted anti-American rants. We’ll soon get to know the Rev. Michael Pfleger. With Barack Obama, you’re not only waiting for the other shoe to drop. You’re following a centipede.


Read More: Election 2008

 

In April 2004, Sen. Obama told a reporter from the Chicago Sun-Times that he had three spiritual mentors or counselors: Jeremiah Wright, James Meeks and Father Michael Pfleger. On Sunday, May 25, Pfleger showed up at Obama’s Trinity United Church of Christ doing his best Rev. Wright imitation.

A radical priest at Chicago’s St. Sabina Catholic Church, Pfleger told the congregation, “We must be honest enough to expose white entitlement and supremacy wherever it raises its head.” He mimicked Hillary Clinton crying and said her reaction to Obama’s candidacy was to say: “I’m white. I’m entitled. There’s a black man stealing my show.”

Obama was quicker on the draw than he was with Wright, saying last week that he was “deeply disappointed in Father Pfleger’s divisive, backward-looking rhetoric.” Maybe, maybe not. But if Obama doesn’t share Pfleger’s views, Trinity Church — Obama’s church — obviously does.

With Wright, Obama could get away for a while with claiming remarks such as 9/11’s being a case of America’s chickens coming home were cherry-picked snippets from decades of sermons, and that in any event he wasn’t there on those particular Sundays.

When Wright repeated and amplified those remarks at the National Press Club, Obama’s political calculation was to disown the pastor he said he couldn’t disown, the man who married him and baptized his children.

Obama said he realized Wright wasn’t the same man he had known for 20 years. Will he say the same thing about Pfleger? Or will he admit that his church is a bastion of black liberation from whose pulpit routinely comes vitriol worthy of a David Duke or, for that matter, a Louis Farrakhan?

The 2004 Sun-Times article noted that “friends and advisers” such as Pfleger, “who has known Obama for the better part of 20 years, help him keep his (moral) compass, he (Obama) says.” Based on Pfleger’s remarks, either he or Obama, or both, have, uh, lost their bearings.

Pfleger has had a working relationship with Obama since the late 1980s. As noted, he was one of Obama’s spiritual mentors. Between 1995 and 2001, Pfleger contributed a total of $1,500 to Obama’s various political campaigns.

This includes a $200 donation in April 2001, three months after Obama, still an Illinois state senator, helped obtain $225,000 in grants for St. Sabina programs. In 2000, Obama secured a $100,000 earmark for the ARK Community Center, attached to St. Sabina. Render unto Caesar.

Pfleger apologized for his remarks, saying “I regret the words I chose” and the “words are inconsistent with Senator Obama’s life and message.” But does he regret the sentiments expressed or merely that they hurt Obama’s political chances? Pfleger’s remorse came only after his rant popped up on YouTube.

Pfleger, who leads a mostly black parish and has warmly embraced what is called black liberation theology, was a member of “Catholics for Obama.” A glowing endorsement of the former state senator appeared on Obama’s campaign Web site. Pfleger is a regular guest at Trinity.

The June-July issue of Wright’s “Trumpet” magazine described him as “Afrocentric to the core.” This is the same magazine that printed an op-ed by a Hamas supporter and honored Nation of Islam leader Farrakhan. Pfleger calls Farrakhan a “friend” who “is a great man who I have great respect for, who has done an awful lot for people in this country.”

Does Obama have any spiritual mentors who don’t hate America and think all its people are racists? We don’t believe in guilt by association, but these are the only associations he seems to have.

Obama cannot claim he was ignorant of Pfleger’s views as he claimed to be of Wright’s. He cannot claim to have sat in the pews of Trinity United, bringing his children there, and heard none of this. Both his judgment and his honesty, even his true beliefs, are in question.

If the Rev. Pfleger helps open the public’s eyes about the enigmatic Obama, he will have also done an awful lot for the people of this country.

 

Exclusive: Dishonest Divisive Barry Obama

by Bill Siegel

Barack Obama’s Watertown response to President Bush’s Knesset speech is precisely what Obama himself accuses Bush and John McCain of engaging in: a dishonest divisive attack, or perhaps better stated, a dishonest, distorting, divisive projection of his own thinking.

President Bush said: “Some seem to believe we should negotiate with terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them that they have been wrong all along. We have heard this before. As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in 1939, an American senator declared, ‘Lord, if only I could have talked to Hitler, all of this might have been avoided.’ We have an obligation to call this what it is: the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly discredited by history.”

The following is the text of Obama’s response, annotated to point out just some of the dishonesty and distortion that animates much of Obama’s rhetoric:

I do want to say something about yesterday. You know, after almost eight years I did not think I could be surprised about anything that George Bush says. But I was wrong. Yesterday George Bush was before the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, to help commemorate the 60th anniversary of Israeli independence. That’s a wonderful occasion and a time for celebration.

It is also a time to demonstrate that he understands the dangerous conditions in which Israel finds itself and that he understands fully the dangerous types of thinking that pervade America and the West that can and have paralyzed the West from taking the actions necessary to adequately assist Israel.

But instead of celebrating and offering some clear ideas about how to move the situation in the Middle East forward,

Bush had presented the Road Map and, rightly or wrongly, is currently actively engaged in what is often called a “peace process.” What is Obama’s idea other than to sophomorically suggest that his magical persuasive powers and desires for “change” will bring about a resolution? The arrogance embedded in this position is precisely that suggested in Bush’s historical reference.

the President did something that presidents don’t do – and that is launch a political attack targeted toward the domestic market in front of a foreign delegation.

The intended target is most sensibly the world, including (i) the Israeli population to show that Bush has a certain grasp of the futility of never-ending appeasement, (ii) Europe and others which are often stuck in the thinking Bush has outlined, as well as (iii) Israel’s enemies. To limit the target to our domestic market is Obama, himself, taking a global issue and using it for his own political objectives – the very projection he uses against Bush himself.

On a day when we were supposed to be celebrating the anniversary of Israel’s independence, he accused me

Again, on the surface this seems simple naïve narcissism for Obama to claim victimhood here. Needless to say, an attack on a thinking pattern is being construed as an attack on Obama himself. Additionally, it can appropriately be seen as an attempt to elevate himself to being on a par with Bush, rising above Hillary Clinton, and starting to take the mantle of being the Democratic nominee. Finally, Obama is twisting the outgoing president’s global remarks on foreign soil into his own accusation – another maneuver of projection.

and other Democrats of wanting to negotiate with terrorists, and said we were appeasers no different from people who appeased Adolf Hitler. That’s what George Bush said in front of the Israeli parliament.

Despite arguments by cable “news” faces who differentiate “appeasing” from “talking,” this is a correct statement concerning Obama. In simple terms, appeasement consists of rewarding the enemy’s unsatisfactory actions in an effort to induce it to stop such behavior. This is precisely what Obama and his Democrat partners do when they neuter all of our applications of force while allowing Iran to stall “negotiations” and continue to advance its nuclear program. Iran couldn’t be clearer with its frequently stated proposition that it will never cease its nuclear program.

Now that’s exactly the kind of appalling attack that’s divided our country and that alienates us from the world.

Embedded in this remark is a laundry list of distortions about our recent history. This “talk” is not at all what divides or supposedly “alienates us” from the world. Rather, we are divided as a country in large part based on the very thinking Bush described. The accurate history is that within months of our successful liberation of Iraq, the Democratic base, assisted by many in the State Department, CIA, and the media did all they could to interfere with Bush’s original plan. That plan was to liberate Iraq from the tyranny of Saddam and have the Iraqis quickly install their own government and then leave. As described in numerous accounts, including Doug Feith’s War and Decision, and Ken Timmerman’s Shadow Warriors, those plans were systematically deconstructed, sabotaged, and discredited. This description does not excuse Bush, as he is the ultimate executive. Nonetheless, our divisiveness exists in large measure because of the great political anti-Bush efforts made by those who currently support Obama. As for alienated allies, having vetted all of the self-interest connected with many European votes against our efforts in Iraq (as well as their having now experienced directly the effects of liberal policies towards Shari’ah motivated Muslims), many of those same European countries are returning to more conservative leadership.

And that’s why we need change in Washington. That’s part of the reason I’m running for President of the United States of America.

Now that was frustrating enough, but then John McCain gives a speech. He gave a speech in the morning where he talked about the need for civility in our politics. He talked about elevating the tone of the debate in our country. He talked about reaching out in a bipartisan fashion to the other side.

And then not an hour later, he turned around and embraced George Bush’s attacks on Democrats. He jumped on a call with a bunch of bloggers and said that I wasn’t fit to protect this nation that I love because I wanted to sit down and negotiate with tough diplomacy with countries like Iran. He accused me of not being fit to protect this nation, a nation that my grandfather served in World War II, this nation that has given me everything that I have. So much for civility.

Civility? As if Obama and his “community organizer” hit men have not been constantly beating up on McCain, deceitfully attaching McCain’s name to Bush’s at every opportunity and attacking McCain’s age and so forth. These tactics, while perhaps expressed in a civil tone, are anything but the type of campaign Obama claims he and the name of “change” stand for. Again, he does precisely that which he claims is a part of the “old” system he will change.

Speaking of names, Obama’s followers attack anyone who cites his middle name “Hussein”, again charging a lack of civility and even racism for suggesting Obama is Muslim. As far back as Cassius Clay, blacks have changed their names to Arab-Islamic ones precisely to demonstrate that they are Muslims. Obama’s given name makes clear that he was a Muslim at least at birth. He certainly realized the significance of his name when, in his younger years he changed and went by “Barry.” If he so wants to dispel any issue today, he is free to change his name again to Barry rather than holding the rest of the world responsible for ignoring and overlooking the obvious.

I want to be perfectly clear with George Bush and John McCain and with the people of South Dakota. If George Bush and John McCain want to have a debate about protecting the United States of America, that is a debate I am happy to have any time, any place. And that is a debate that I will win, because George Bush and John McCain have a lot to answer for.

[Standing Ovation]

Rhetoric and debate are his strong suits. Perhaps this is why he goes around saying he will talk to anyone. “Talk” is precisely all he stands for and all that his Messianic worshippers “hope” is necessary to rid our world of evil and solve our problems. Again, that is precisely part of the thinking Bush was describing.

George Bush and John McCain have a lot to answer for. They have to explain why we are now entering our sixth year of war in Iraq. We were supposed to be going over there for weapons of mass destruction that we never found.

Not true. We went into Iraq for a variety of reasons. The most often expressed reason was the failure of the UN to take sufficient action on 17 Security Council Resolutions. WMD was also a reason, given that most who saw the intelligence believed WMD to exist. Even today, numerous sources believe there is clear evidence that WMD were shipped out of Iraq before the liberation. More profoundly, as Obama insists he is the only one who had the good judgment to know in advance that the war was a mistake. Did he somehow know the almost universally accepted intelligence stating Iraq did have WMD and WMD programs was faulty? Or was the “judgment” he trumpets the conclusion that assuming the intelligence was correct, there was insufficient reason to go to enforce the Resolutions. In either case, his tactic of whining that no WMD was found disguises his real philosophy; that which Bush was outlining to the Knesset.

We were told that it was going to last a few months and cost a few billion dollars.

This was the plan until the State Department, under the influence of Democrats, sabotaged its execution and stretched the liberation into an occupation.

We have now spent over 600 billion dollars. Thousands of lives lost, and we have not been made more safe.

Safe by what measure? Obama inappropriately conflates the realities that truly threaten us with conditions that were caused by Bush’s supposed failures. This is where he demonstrates either ignorance or naïveté as to the real threats the West has faced for decades or he is deliberately abusing the truth to sell his candidacy. For all the hardship that has been incurred during the Bush years, it is foolish to think this decades-long battle will be easy. At least a significant portion of America has woken up to and become aware of the powerful force that confronts the West. That is as critical to our safety as any military or police victory.

They’re going to have to explain the fact that Osama bin Laden is still at large and is sending out videotapes with impunity. They need to answer for the fact that al Qaeda’s leadership is stronger than ever because we took our eye off the ball in Afghanistan. They’ve got to answer for the fact that Iran is the greatest strategic beneficiary of our invasion in Iraq. It made Iran stronger.

What has made Iran stronger after the Iraqi liberation was America’s show of deep ambivalence with any use of force. It was this fear that Obama’s Democrat cohorts used to paralyze any effective stance against Iran. With the liberation, much of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard had so feared an attack on Iran that they moved themselves and/or their assets out of the country. This was the time that Iran was offering to assist us with efforts against Al Qaeda and the time we had maximum leverage because of our use of force against Iraq. Once America’s Left taught Iran that it was unwilling to take a right turn and deploy force against Iran, the regime became emboldened and began to ignore every attempt to “negotiate” for the cessation of Iran’s nuclear program. Bush is responsible ultimately for inaction but the anti-Bush forces are what informed Iran that it could get away with endless stalling and lying. America has so blatantly communicated its fear of being militarily aggressive against Iran that Iran has done simply that which is expected-been unwilling to negotiate or give anything, stalled, and continued to advance its nuclear program.

George Bush’s policies. They’re going to have to explain why Hamas now controls Gaza, Hamas that was strengthened because the United States insisted that we should have democratic elections in the Palestinian authority. They’re going to have to explain why it is that Iran is able to fund Hezbollah and poses the greatest threat to the United States and Israel in the Middle East in a generation.

That’s the Bush-McCain record on protecting this country. Those are the failed policies that John McCain wants to double down on, because he still hasn’t spelled out one substantial way in which he’d be different from George Bush when it comes to foreign policy.

I’m a strong believer in civility and I’m a strong believer in a bipartisan foreign policy.

This completely misrepresents his record of virtually no bipartisan efforts. He “talks” well but his actions (specifically the lack of bipartisan action) belie his words.

But that cause is not served with dishonest, divisive attacks of the sort that we’ve seen out of George Bush and John McCain over the last couple of days.

Again with the projection – Obama is very skilled at divisive dishonest attacks, all packaged with a soothing voice and face.

John McCain has repeated this notion that I am prepared to negotiate with terrorists. I have never said that.

This is simply false as his debate responses have made clear- unless he wants to make the evasive distinction between terrorists and state sponsors of terrorism. If he relies on that distinction, he is more naïve than generally thought.

I am adamant about not negotiating with Hamas, a terrorist organization that has vowed to destroy Israel and won’t recognize them. In fact, the irony is that just as John McCain was making these attacks, a story broke that he was actually guilty of the exact same thing that he was accusing me of, and in fact was saying that maybe we need to deal with Hamas.

That’s the kind of hypocrisy we’ve been seeing in our foreign policy. The kind of fear-peddling, fear-mongering that has prevented us from actually making us safer.

Actually, it is Obama and his “community organizer” cohorts who have mastered fear-peddling and fear-mongering. Obama’s “change” campaign is code for “revolution” as has been so thoroughly articulated and mastered by Obama’s “community organizer” guru Saul Alinsky. One of Alinsky’s tactics, mastered by Obama, are to personalize the target and describe it as 100% evil. Obama has done that perfectly with Bush and then further extends it to McCain. In fact, the essence of Obama’s thesis is that we only really need fear Bush and Cheney as they are completely responsible for our threats. Get rid of them and their representative McCain, and Obama promises you will have nothing to fear. This is perhaps one of his most devious and dangerous projections – the transfer of fear off of our real and appropriate enemies onto those he seeks to destroy.

They’re trying to fool you.

Again, a true investigation into Obama’s roots reveals his alignment with Alinsky. Most of the public has no idea who Alinsky was or what he taught. It is Obama’s fooling them that has allowed him to suggest that “change” means something other than radical revolution.

They’re trying to scare you. And they’re not telling the truth. And the reason is that they can’t win a foreign policy debate on the merits. But it’s not going to work. It’s not going to work this time. It’s not going to work this year.

Our Iran policy is a complete failure right now,

To the extent that is true, it is due to our actions as describe earlier. McCain may hopefully be able to teach the Iranian regime to think differently.

and that is the policy that John McCain is running on right now. He has nothing to offer except the naive and irresponsible belief that tough talk from Washington will somehow cause Iran to give up its nuclear program and support for terrorism.

Actually, it is only when there is a credible threat of tough action, not talk, that we have a prayer of having a successful Iran policy. Obama, the master of “talk” is completely unable to sell any credible threat of action.

I’m running for President to change course, not to continue George Bush’s course.

I believe we need to use all elements of American power to pressure Iran, including tough, principled and direct diplomacy. That’s what John F. Kennedy did. That’s what Ronald Reagan did when dealing with the Soviets. And that’s what the president’s own Secretary of Defense wants to do.

Many have already written on the historical misrepresentations embedded in these faulty analogies, distinguishing talks in secret from summits, talks at the brink of war when the force card is played rather then when force is interpreted to be avoided at all costs, and so on. Obama fails to point out that it was precisely Khrushchev’s perception of Kennedy’s weakness that emboldened the Soviets to take the game to the brink of all out war in the first place. We can not afford to replay that game today with religiously motivated, apocalyptic Mullahs. Simply put, this is more of Obama’s distortive talk. He is able to get away with it because many of his idolaters know no better.

Understand: George Bush’s Secretary of Defense suggests we talk directly to Iran. So I don’t know if George Bush is calling his own Secretary of Defense an “appeaser.” I don’t know who he’s talking about.

Didn’t you already narcissistically insist he was talking about you?

It’s time to present Iran with a clear choice. If it abandons its nuclear program, its support for terrorists and its threats to Israel, then it can rejoin the community of nations. If not, Iran will face deeper isolation and steeper sanctions.

This is perhaps the most dishonest element of his speech. None of this is new. These positions have been advanced by the Europeans and America for years. This is precisely what has been attempted and met with challenge from the Russians, the Chinese, and others. Alinsky instructs his followers to recognize that much of the population is ignorant and to utilize that ignorance. Obama deploys that tactic here as he has crystallized in the minds of his followers the illusion that no negotiations have taken place with Iran for years.

But in the Bush-McCain view, everybody who disagrees with their failed Iran policy is an “appeaser.” Back during his “No Surrender Tour,” John McCain said that anybody who wanted to end the war in Iraq wanted to surrender. He even said later on that he would be willing to keep troops in Iraq for 100 years.

Again he distorts what McCain actually said and clearly intended. Nevertheless, Obama presents himself as the innocent force for good who has been so maliciously misrepresented.

I think he noticed that it wasn’t polling well, because he announced yesterday, he said that suddenly all our troops are going to be home by 2013, although he didn’t explain how he was going to do it.

Projection again? Perhaps what annoys the Clintons more than anything else in losing to Obama is that Obama has hijacked all of the old Clinton strategies and implements them even more skillfully. Every position Clinton took was polled and adjusted and this has become an Obama staple. Then, like a Clinton, he accuses his opponent of the very ploy.

He offered the promise that America will win a victory, with no understanding that Iraq is fighting a civil war. Just like George Bush’s plan isn’t about winning, it’s about staying. And that’s why there will be a clear choice in November: fighting a war without end, or ending this war and bringing our troops home. We don’t need John McCain’s predictions about when the war will end. We need a plan to end it, and that’s what I’ve provided during this campaign.

The American people have had enough of the division and the bluster. Both Bush and McCain represent the failed foreign policy and fear-mongering of the past. I believe the American people are ready to reject this approach and to embrace the future. I think you’re ready for change that unites this country and ends this war and restores our security and standing in the world and that is serious about a bipartisan foreign policy.

This it the true first step towards an appeasement policy. Irrespective of any words, its intention is to convince the crowd that under Obama’s guidance, we will be able to talk our way back to a civil world. As Bush was suggesting, a civil world requires participants who respect and seek civility in terms similar to each other. It is the very fact that our enemies do not share our notion and terms of civility that generates the problem in the first place.

You can’t suggest that you want to be bipartisan and then run the kind of campaign tactics that we’ve been seeing over the last couple of days. You’ve got to start while you’re campaigning. That’s why we’ve got to bring about some change in the White House.

“Change” as Obama truly means it, is anything but bipartisan. His notion of bipartisan is to listen to what those on the other side of the aisle have to say in order to politely tell them that, in fact, he will act only as he has done throughout his career – in the most partisan liberal fashion possible.

Perhaps the most important part of most Bush speeches is truly relevant here – “God Bless America.” We will certainly need it.

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FamilySecurityMatters.org Contributing Editor Bill Siegel lives in New York.

If you are a reporter or producer who is interested in receiving more information about this writer orthis article, please email your request to pr@familysecuritymatters.org.

Note – The opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions, views, and/or philosophy of The Family Security Foundation, Inc.

You Can’t Appease Everybody

For the record it’s pronounced henceforth: ‘Admaninejad’ like ‘admonee – nedjod’ okay? Great.

After decades of comparing Nixon to Hitler, Reagan to Hitler and Bush to Hitler, liberals have finally decided it is wrong to make comparisons to Hitler. But the only leader to whom they have applied their newfound rule of thumb is: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
 
While Ahmadinejad has not done anything as starkly evil as cut the capital gains tax, he does deny the Holocaust, call for the destruction of Israel, deny the existence of gays in Iran and refuses to abandon his nuclear program despite protests from the United Nations. That’s the only world leader we’re not allowed to compare to Hitler.

President Bush’s speech at the Knesset two weeks ago was somewhat more nuanced than liberals’ Hitler arguments. He did not simply jump up and down chanting: “Ahmadinejad is Hitler!” Instead, Bush condemned a policy of appeasement toward madmen, citing Neville Chamberlain’s ill-fated talks with Adolf Hitler.

Suspiciously, Bush’s speech was interpreted as a direct hit on B. Hussein Obama’s foreign policy — and that’s according to Obama’s supporters.

So to defend Obama, who — according to his supporters — favors appeasing madmen, liberals expanded the rule against ad Hitlerum arguments to cover any mention of the events leading to World War II. A ban on “You’re like Hitler” arguments has become liberals’ latest excuse to ignore history.

Unless, of course, it is liberals using historical examples to support Obama’s admitted policy of appeasing dangerous lunatics. It’s a strange one-sided argument when they can cite Nixon going to China and Reagan meeting with Gorbachev, but we can’t cite Chamberlain meeting with Hitler.

There are reasons to meet with a tyrant, but none apply to Ahmadinejad. We’re not looking for an imperfect ally against some other dictatorship, as Nixon was with China. And we aren’t in a Mexican stand-off with a nuclear power, as Reagan was with the USSR. At least not yet.

Mutually Assured Destruction was bad enough with the Evil Empire, but something you definitely want to avoid with lunatics who are willing to commit suicide in order to destroy the enemies of Islam. As with the H-word, our sole objective with Ahmadinejad is to prevent him from becoming a military power.

What possible reason is there to meet with Ahmadinejad? To win a $20 bar bet as to whether or not the man actually owns a necktie?

We know his position and he knows ours. He wants nuclear arms, American troops out of the Middle East and the destruction of Israel. We don’t want that. (This is assuming Mike Gravel doesn’t pull off a major upset this November.) We don’t need him as an ally against some other more dangerous dictator because … well, there aren’t any.

Does Obama imagine he will make demands of Ahmadinejad? Using what stick as leverage, pray tell? A U.S. boycott of the next Holocaust-denial conference in Tehran? The U.N. has already demanded that Iran give up its nuclear program. Ahmadinejad has ignored the U.N. and that’s the end of it.

We always have the ability to “talk” to Ahmadinejad if we have something to say. Bush has a telephone. If Iranian crop dusters were headed toward one of our nuclear power plants, I am quite certain that Bush would be able to reach Ahmadinejad to tell him that Iran will be flattened unless the planes retreat. If his cell phone died, Bush could just post a quick warning on the Huffington Post.

Liberals view talk as an end in itself. They never think through how these talks will proceed, which is why Chamberlain ended up giving away Czechoslovakia. He didn’t leave for Munich planning to do that. It is simply the inevitable result of talking with madmen without a clear and obtainable goal. Without a stick, there’s only a carrot.

The only explanation for liberals’ hysterical zealotry in favor of Obama’s proposed open-ended talks with Ahmadinejad is that they seriously imagine crazy foreign dictators will be as charmed by Obama as cable TV hosts whose legs tingle when they listen to Obama (a condition that used to be known as “sciatica”).

Because, really, who better to face down a Holocaust denier with a messianic complex than the guy who is afraid of a debate moderated by Brit Hume?

There is no possible result of such a meeting apart from appeasement and humiliation of the U.S. If we are prepared to talk, then we’re looking for a deal. What kind of deal do you make with a madman until he is ready to surrender?

Will President Obama listen respectfully as Ahmadinejad says he plans to build nuclear weapons? Will he say he’ll get back to Ahmadinejad on removing all U.S. troops from the region? Will he nod his head as Ahmadinejad demands the removal of the Jewish population from the Middle East? Obama says he’s prepared to have an open-ended chat with Ahmadinejad, so I guess everything is on the table.

Perhaps in the spirit of compromise, Obama could agree to let Iran push only half of Israel into the sea. That would certainly constitute “change”! Obama could give one of those upbeat speeches of his, saying: As a result of my recent talks with President Ahmadinejad, some see the state of Israel as being half empty. I prefer to see it as half full. And then Obama can return and tell Americans he could no more repudiate Ahmadinejad than he could repudiate his own white grandmother. It will make Chris Matthews’ leg tingle.

There is a third reason to talk to dictators, in addition to seeking an ally or as part of a policy of Mutually Assured Destruction.

Gen. Douglas MacArthur talked with Japanese imperial forces on Sept. 2, 1945. There was a long ceremony aboard the USS Missouri with full press coverage and a lot of talk. It was a regular international confab!

It also took place after we had dropped two nukes on Japan and MacArthur was officially accepting Japan’s surrender. If Obama plans to drop nukes on Ahmadinejad prior to their little chat-fest, I’m all for it. But I don’t think that’s what liberals have in mind.

Electoral College Outlook: McCain 270, Obama 268

Electoral College: While national polls garner attention, they have no direct bearing on choosing our next President. A state-by-state count of electoral votes is the key to analyzing the presidential race.

For the first time this year, we run through all 50 states plus the District of Columbia in order to handicap the presidential race. Outlook: If the election were held today, we see a McCain victory by the narrowest of margins.

The electoral map looks nearly identical to 2004, with Iowa and Colorado swinging into the Democratic camp. Beneath the surface, however, we see Michigan and Pennsylvania becoming more competitive for Republicans.

The election will hinge on two regions: Lake Erie and the Mountain West. An Obama win in New Mexico or Nevada would be enough to tip the scales, but a McCain win in Pennsylvania could put the race out of reach. In the end, as always, it comes down to Ohio, where Obama’s weakness among rural whites could send McCain to the White House. McCain 270, Obama 268.

Alabama (9): McCain will be safe in this Deep South state. Solid Republican.

Alaska (3): While this state’s GOP is undergoing political upheaval, and Democrats could possibly steal a House and Senate seat thanks to corruption on the part of entrenched Republican incumbents, on a national level, this is a solidly Republican state. McCain doesn’t help himself by opposing drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve (ANWR), but he shouldn’t have to worry about this state. Solid Republican.

Arizona (10): Karl Rove has worried about Arizona in the past, in part because of the immigrant influx. But this is McCain’s home state, and he will carry it easily. Solid Republican.

Arkansas (6): The Democratic stronghold in the South, Arkansas has two safe Democratic senators, and three of four congressmen are Democrats. Still, Obama will struggle in all Southern states, and this one is no more friendly than the others. Solid Republican.

California (55): Every four years Republicans talk about having a chance here, and they give a new reason. In truth, Republicans need to raise funds in wealthy Orange County and other rich parts of the Golden State, and writing off this once-Republican state is not a good way to extract campaign cash from it.

This year a constitutional amendment on gay marriage — overturning the recent state supreme court decision that the state must approve same-sex marriages — can a boost McCain. While gay marriage initiatives have helped Republican candidates in the past (especially in 2004), the turnout effect in California won’t be huge, nor is McCain the natural candidate for anti-gay-marriage voters, considering his opposition to a federal marriage amendment in Congress.

Liberal, black, and college populations will turn out in droves for Obama, while immigration resentment in San Diego and the Los Angeles are will hurt McCain, the author of the 2006 amnesty bill. Solid Democratic.

Colorado (9): Bush won here in 2004 by 100,000 votes out of 2.1 million, but Colorado has shown a tack to towards Democrats since then. In 2006, Democrats took over a Senate seat, the governorship, and a U.S. House seat. This year, Democrats are poised to pick up the second Senate seat. With the Democratic National Convention in Denver stirring liberal excitement, Colorado looks like one of Obama’s best chances to win a Bush state. Leaning Democratic.

Connecticut (7): Connecticut is liberal and Democratic, and a hawkish Republican is not going to do well. Wealthy white liberals with advanced degrees are a big chunk of Obama’s base. If McCain picks Sen. Joe Lieberman (ID) as his running mate, Connecticut might be in play. The Lieberman endorsement on its own does almost nothing to help McCain. Solid Democratic.

Delaware (3): Al Gore’s and John Kerry’s wins here in 2000 and 2004 were not dominant, and Gov. Ruth Ann Minner (D) barely won reelection in 2004. This state could make its way onto the battleground, but early on it looks like an Obama victory. Leaning Democratic.

District of Columbia (3): If you live in D.C. and you’re not black, you’re probably a rich liberal lawyer or lobbyist. This could be a blowout of unprecedented proportions. Libertarian nominee Bob Barr could challenge McCain for second place with about 4% each. Solid Democratic.

Florida (27): Crucial to a Republican victory, Florida is looking promising for McCain early on. In the primaries, McCain scored a big win here, while Obama boycotted the state and is now working to patch up relations. Even before the general election began, McCain had the edge here.

The senior-citizen vote throughout the state will tilt strongly towards McCain for three reasons: he is one of them; older white voters will be hesitant to elect a black President, and such a young President; the veteran community will be warm towards McCain. Add on Obama’s stance of engagement with Cuba and a possible Jewish problem, and things stack up well for McCain. If McCain picks popular Gov. Charlie Crist (R) as his running mate, he could lock up the state (while possibly hurting himself elsewhere).

Obama could certainly win Florida, but don’t be surprised if it starts to fade off the radar screen by October and the McCain grip on it tightens. Leaning Republican.

Georgia (15): Obama talks about winning Southern states in November because he won them in January, February, and March. But winning a Democratic primary is much easier for a black liberal than winning a general election is. Georgia might be his best shot in the South, but it’s not a very good shot. Solid Republican.

Hawaii (4): Obama will dominate his native state in November as he dominated it in March. McCain can save on airfare and reduce his carbon footprint by skipping this state. Solid Democratic.

Idaho (4): This state is too pro-gun and pro-life to vote for Obama. Bush won 2-to-1 here twice. This year won’t be much different. Solid Republican.

Illinois (21): Obama’s home hasn’t been a swing state in a while, and this is not the year. Obama will dominate here. Solid Democratic.

Indiana (11): Indiana has been solid Republican turf in recent presidential contests, with Bush wins of 16 and 21 points in his two runs here. But this year McCain will need to work hard to keep this state in the GOP column.

Obama’s first advantage is Lake County, which includes the cities of Gary and East Chicago as well as some liberal suburbs. This is Obama’s home turf and the second-most populous county in the state. Indianapolis has a high black population, while Bloomington’s liberal university population could generate enthusiasm (although only 28,000 people voted in Monroe County in the Democratic primary).

McCain lacks the down-home appeal that made Christian Midwestern voters so drawn to Bush, adding to Obama’s hopes. Democrats, of course, picked up three congressional seats in Indiana in 2006. However, Democrats have gained here with socially conservative candidates. With Obama and governor candidate Jill Long Thompson atop the Democratic column, Indiana Republicans should have a rebound year in 2008. Leaning Republican.

Iowa (7): While Iowa is certainly its own creature politically, Obama’s strong showing in early head-to-head polls ought to give Republicans reason to worry about the Heartland. Democrats picked up two House seats here in 2006, and Republicans have no chance to win them back. Senator Tom Harkin (D), a hardcore liberal, also has no serious challenger this year.

Iowa, of course, was the state that catapulted Obama towards the nomination while McCain (prudently) skipped it for New Hampshire. Obama is from a neighboring state, and McCain doesn’t rally the conservative base. This swing state appears set to swing back to where it was in 2000: the Democratic column. Leaning Democratic.

Kansas (6): The Kansas GOP is not in good shape, and Obama dominated the caucuses here, but a liberal Democrat isn’t going to carry this state in a presidential election, even if Obama picks Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D) as his running mate. Solid Republican.

Kentucky (8): This state is trending Democratic in some ways, and Obama claims to have strong inroads into the South, but his inability to win rural white voters in the primary here demonstrates that the commonwealth is not really in play this year. Solid Republican.

Louisiana (9): One of the nation’s most intriguing states politically, Gov. Bobby Jindal’s 2007 landslide looked like the beginning of a GOP avalanche until Democrats captured the Baton Rouge congressional seat in a special election earlier this month. A high black population and a probably safe Sen. Mary Landrieu (D) weigh in on Obama’s behalf. The influential sugar industry here won’t be pleased with McCain, either. Still, this is now a GOP state like the rest of the Deep South, and they are not about to elect a liberal, pro-choice Democrat. Leaning Republican.

Maine (4): Increasingly a Democratic stronghold, the demographics here cut in both directions. Old white people tend to be McCain voters, but leisure-class New Englanders are Obama people. Gore didn’t get a majority here in 2000, but that’s because Ralph Nader posted 6%. Obama is the strong favorite here, but this one could drift in either direction. Maine is one of two states in the country that are not winner-take-all in the Electoral College. The statewide winner gets two electoral votes, and the winner of each congressional district is awarded one elector each. Leaning Democratic.

Maryland (10): Maryland is even less winnable for the GOP with Obama atop the ticket than it was in 2000 and 2004. The mixture of wealthy whites and urban blacks makes this Obama country. Solid Democratic.

Massachusetts (12): The Bay State is beyond the reach of any Republican. Obama might not fare as well in South Boston as a whiter candidate would, but he won’t lose the most Democratic state in the nation. Solid Democratic.

Michigan (17): Michigan may be McCain’s best chance to win a 2004 Blue State. As with Florida, McCain has the advantage out of the starting gate, having posted two strong primary performances here while Obama boycotted the state.

Democrats have won all of the top-tier statewide races this decade (three Senate contests, two governor races, and both Presidential races), and the GOP brand is damaged thanks, in part, to George W. Bush and the poor economy. But still, McCain has a good chance here. A Rasmussen poll in early May of 500 likely voters showed a dead heat between Obama and McCain.

Both candidates are weak in Michigan. McCain doesn’t naturally connect with hunters or union voters, but these are the very Democrats who have been rejecting Obama throughout the primaries. Obama’s base of college towns and black cities will give him a boost over previous Democrats, but his consistent weakness among union workers will drag him down.

Michigan, together with Ohio and Pennsylvania, promises to be the very heart of the 2008 battle. Libertarian Bob Barr could draw on enough gun-rights single-issue voters here to tip the scale. Leaning Democratic.

Minnesota (10): Although Kerry won Minnesota by less than 100,000 votes, Republicans may not be within striking distance here. Minnesota was one of Obama’s strongest states, thanks to a strong liberal core in the Democrat-Farm-Labor Party that will provide enthusiasm and turnout in November.

This state may stay competitive throughout, but it’s likely Obama will pull away here by the fall. Leaning Democratic.

Mississippi (6): While Democrats can point to a special election congressional pickup here, as well as a large black population, this Deep South state is safe in the GOP column with a black liberal atop the ticket. Solid Republican.

Missouri (11): Missouri is another top pickup opportunity for Obama. Bush won here twice, with a 200,000-vote victory in 2004. Things aren’t looking so rosy for Republicans these days, though, having lost a U.S. Senate seat in 2006 and poised to lose the governorship this year. Obama eked out a primary win here on Super Tuesday by winning big in the areas around St. Louis and Kansas City, but he lost badly in the rural regions of the state. His appeal to black voters and suburban voters makes him a real threat, especially if McCain fails to rally Christian conservatives throughout the state. This may be the state where McCain’s lack of stronger conservative credentials could really hurt him. As of now, McCain holds slight leads in most polls. Leaning Republican.

Montana (3): Montana is safe for McCain. Solid Republican.

Nebraska (5): Nebraska apportions one elector per congressional district, plus two electors to the statewide winner. McCain should win all five electors. Solid Republican.

Nevada (5): A prime chance for Obama to pick off some Red State electors, Bush won only 50% in both elections here. A significant libertarian turnout here is very possible. Immigration should play a role — given the 20% Hispanic population and some resentment of unchecked immigration, the issue could cut both ways. Nevada, and not Ohio, could be McCain’s most precarious state. Leaning Republican.

New Hampshire (4): New Hampshire was one of three states to switch sides from 2000 to 2004, and it could switch back to the GOP column this year. In 2004, Kerry won the state, in part as the local boy, but also due to the Democratic surge in the Granite State. That Democratic surge doesn’t look likely to slow down in 2008.

McCain, however, has a sort of second home here, having won the state in the 2000 and 2008 primaries. His pragmatic moderation is appreciated here, and he will need to peel himself away from Bush and the GOP. This is one of the most swingable states, but early on, it leans towards Obama. Leaning Democratic.

New Jersey (15): Bush surged here in 2004, but not enough to carry the state. That was a one-time blip, and Obama should have no trouble carrying the Garden State. Solid Democratic.

New Mexico (5): Election Day ground zero could be New Mexico, three open congressional seats, an open U.S. Senate seat, and a competitive presidential contest fill the ballot.

Bush carried the state in 2004 by 6,000 votes after having lost it by 365 votes in 2000. These close races clash with the huge registration advantage Democrats hold here.

The state is 42% Hispanic, and here they vote more than in other states. Obama’s poor performance among Hispanic voters and McCain’s coming from neighboring Arizona should help him here. If Bill Richardson does not play a large role, McCain looks to have a slight edge. Leaning Republican.

New York (31): Obama will dominate here. Solid Democratic.

North Carolina (15): Obama’s strong performance in the Southern primaries doesn’t portend a competitive general election. The wine-and-cheese crowd of Charlotte, the black electorate, and the liberal college vote may be vocal, but they’re the minority in North Carolina. Solid Republican.

North Dakota (3): Bush twice won more than 60% here. While McCain may not do as well, he should walk away with this one. Solid Republican.

Ohio (20): In a familiar sight, Ohio looks likely play the role of decider this fall. As in Michigan, both candidates have more weaknesses than strengths here. McCain is no Wal-Mart family-man conservative as Bush was, but Obama has to hope that religious voters and gun owners get over the “bitterness” that caused him to lose Ohio badly in March.

Obama’s perceived elitism, his race, and his liberalism will all hurt him here, but there are pockets of wealthy suburbanites, black voters, and hardcore liberals that will help him. A new Democratic senator and governor, together with likely Democratic pickups in the U.S. House here are all promising signs for the Democratic Party, but Obama himself — and his comments in the San Francisco fundraiser — will not be easy sales.

McCain needs to figure out how he will talk about trade and social issues. If he handles this state well, he will win it. Leaning Republican.

Oklahoma (7): This is not the part of the Heartland that’s in play. Solid Republican.

Oregon (7): Oregon is not an overwhelmingly Democratic state, but it has strong liberal populations that will rally around Obama. McCain, however, could certainly make inroads into the rural voters. Leaning Democratic.

Pennsylvania (21): Many pundits falsely touted Pennsylvania as a swing state in 2004, when it wasn’t. It tilted heavily towards the Democrats. In 2008, however, it is back within reach for the GOP, thanks, in large part, to the Democrats’ choice of nominee. Obama’s dismal primary performance here, especially among white voters, makes this a tough state for Democrats to hold onto. Sen. Bob Casey (D) tried to help Obama with the “bitter” voters in the center of the state, but he fell short. The question for November is can Obama hold onto the Arlen Specter-Ed Rendell vote in the Philadelphia suburbs.

McCain is not the ideal candidate to pick off Casey-Santorum Democrats, and Rendell is still popular. The Keystone State favors Obama, but the closeness here gives McCain a second way to win if Ohio or Nevada falls to Obama. Leaning Democratic.

Rhode Island (4): Rhode Island is even more liberal than Massachusetts in many ways. Solid Democratic.

South Carolina (8): The Democratic primary electorate is majority black, but the November electorate is not. Obama can’t win rural whites, and so he can’t win South Carolina. Solid Republican.

South Dakota (3): This is a McCain shoo-in. Solid Republican.

Tennessee (11): More competitive than much of the South, but still a safe McCain win. Solid Republican.

Texas (34): McCain may not dominate as Bush did, but if he’s in trouble in Texas, it’s all over. Solid Republican.

Utah (5): Utah is the most Republican state in the nation. Solid Republican.

Virginia (13): There is much talk about Virginia as a Democratic pickup for 2008. Democrats hold the governorship and after November will probably hold both Senate seats. Popular former Gov. Mark Warner (D) may have an easy enough path to election his Senate race that he can stump for Obama. Democrats have made big advances in Northern Virginia as those suburbs have gained in wealth because of the growth of federal government. Add in a strong black vote near Richmond and Virginia Beach, and you see the reasons for Democratic optimism.

But many of the suburban former Republicans who have turned against Bush, former Sen. George Allen (R), and the GOP broadly will be drawn to McCain’s brand of moderation. Also, Bush won this state by nearly 10 points in 2004. Leaning Republican.

Vermont (3): The heart of liberal hippiedom will vote for Obama. Solid Democratic.

Washington (11): Obama’s strength here will make this very difficult for McCain. Solid Democratic.

West Virginia (5): Once a battleground state, this year West Virginia falls off the charts. Consider how poorly Obama did in the primary here. Solid Republican.

Wisconsin (10): This is a battleground state where Obama looks stronger than most Democrats. He shores up the Nader vote and motivates the liberal base. The black pockets in Milwaukee help out, too. Leaning Democratic.

Wyoming (3): McCain will win here easily. Solid Republican.

Join the U.S. Navy and Proud Americans in Warning: Don’t Tread on Me

Flags bearing rattlesnakes and bearing the simple warning “Don’t Tread on Me” were first flown on the first ships of the Continental Navy in the Delaware River in 1775. Today, as America faces unprecedented threats, this historic symbol of our founding has emerged as a reminder of our origin and true courage. The Secretary of the Navy, Gordon R. England, has ordered all U.S. Navy ships to fly the First Navy Jack in place of the Union Jack for the duration of the Global War on Terrorism.

The U.S. Navy is relying on a historic icon to remind the world of America’s strength and courage. The rattlesnake has been a favorite symbol of independence throughout America’s history. Adopted as a uniquely American icon by early patriots, such as Benjamin Franklin, the rattlesnake represents American unity. Individually, its rattles have no sound, but united they can be heard by all. And while it does not strike unless threatened, once provoked, the deadly rattlesnake never surrenders.

The rattlesnake was used as a symbol of resistance to British repressive acts in Colonial America. Flags bearing rattlesnakes and bearing the simple warning “Don’t Tread on Me” were flown on the first ships of the Continental Navy in the Delaware River in 1775.

Today, as America faces unprecedented threats, this historic symbol of our founding has emerged as a reminder of our origin and true courage. The Secretary of the Navy, Gordon R. England, has ordered all U.S. Navy ships to fly the First Navy Jack in place of the Union Jack for the duration of the Global War on Terrorism. In a memo to all ships and stations, England explained, “The temporary substitution of this Jack represents a historic reminder of the nation’s and Navy’s origin and will to persevere and triumph.”

Eagle Special Products has joined with the United States Navy Memorial Foundation to bring our members a special edition First Navy Jack Flag. Created to meet the standards of flag construction established by the United States Navy Memorial Foundation, each 3′ x 5′ flag in this edition is handmade, piece-constructed together, and then marrow-stitched. We have also arranged for each First Navy Jack Flag to be hand-raised according to tradition over the U.S. Navy Memorial. Your flag will be accompanied by a certificate documenting that it was flown over the U.S. Navy Memorial.

We invite you to proudly display this American symbol and send a message to the world that America will stand up to its aggressors and preserve liberty.

England prove too good for United States (CNN)

  • Story Highlights
    • England cruise to a 2-0 friendly victory over the United States at Wembley
    • Captain John Terry scores the first while Steven Gerrard adds the second goal
    • Fabio Capello’s side face Trinidad in their final match this season on Saturday

    (CNN) — Captain John Terry helped England produce their most impressive performance of the Fabio Capello era with the opening goal in a 2-0 friendly win against the United States at Wembley.

    The Chelsea defender had something to smile about after his Champions League final penalty shoot-out agony when he headed Fabio Capello’s side into a 38th-minute lead.

    There could have been no more fitting scorer than Terry, just one week after his spot-kick miss prevented Chelsea from victory in Moscow.

    Steven Gerrard made sure of victory 14 minutes into the second half when he converted a slide-rule pass from substitute Gareth Barry.

    The visitors had already survived one lucky escape when Gerrard slotted home David Beckham’s curling free-kick, only for the goal to be ruled out because England’s newest centurion had not waited for the whistle.

    When Beckham picked Gerrard out with another free-kick, the midfielder’s shot seemed to be heading into the net until Clint Dempsey got his head to it, providing Frank Lampard with a chance from the rebound which he promptly volleyed wide.

    Gerrard also set up Beckham and Jermain Defoe, eager to make an impression on his first England start for nearly two years, but neither man could locate the net.

    Terry at least put a different complexion on proceedings, even if his fourth goal for his country could hardly make up for his misery at the Luzhniki Stadium.

    Capello used up his maximum six substitutions in the second-half but man-of-the-match Gerrard stayed on the pitch and after scoring his goal, the Liverpool captain cushioned a header into Wayne Rooney’s path, only for the Manchester United striker to screw his shot wide.

    Eddie Johnson wasted the visitors’ best chance, firing wide from the edge of the area when left in space by an England defense that, by-and-large, was given little trouble for the majority of the 90 minutes.

    England will now travel to Trinidad & Tobago on Thursday for their final friendly match of the season, although Italian Capello is expected to leave his Manchester United and Chelsea players behind to give some squad players a chance to shine.