Friday, 29 March 2013

NORTH KOREA: WILL THEY LAUNCH MISSILES?

Ken Berwitz

Is the idiot dictator of North Korea really ready to launch a missile attack - possibly a nuclear attack, since the Clinton administration gave him the capability to build such weapons - against the United States?  Or is it that he is stupidly making threats designed to show him as some kind of military mastermind?

Excerpted from Julian Ryall's article in London's Daily Telegraph:

North Korea has revealed its plans to strike targets in Hawaii and the continental United States in photos taken in Kim Jong-un's military command centre.

The photos appeared in the state-run Rodong newspaper and were apparently taken at an "emergency meeting" early on Friday morning. They show Kim signing the order for North Korea's strategic rocket forces to be on standby to fire at US targets, the paper said, with large-scale maps and diagrams in the background.

The images show a chart marked "US mainland strike plan" and missile trajectories that the NK News web site estimates terminate in Hawaii, Washington DC, Los Angeles and Austin, Texas.  

Despite the increasingly belligerent rhetoric and new images emerging from the North Korean regime, analysts believe its missiles are not capable of striking targets as far away as the US mainland and are not, as yet, capable of delivering a nuclear payload.

The images of Kim surrounded by his officers and diagrams of targets in the US are designed for a domestic consumption and to demonstrate the young leader's mastery of military affairs, experts believe.

This is a tough one.  Because when you're dealing with an idiot, logic, rationality and understanding of the consequences are not on the front burner.  Things can go in any direction.

I hope the Obama administration is prepared for every eventuality -- unless Mr. Obama has decided to furlough our military presence on the Korean Peninsula so he can "prove" how bad the sequester is...

Zeke .... ..... In the words of an ancient Roman ---- Si vis pacem, para bellum . ----- ---- If you wish for PEACE, then prepare for WAR ---- Peace through strength. ..... ..... In the words of Big LeRoy : Be the meanest mofo in da hood, 'n nobody mess wiff you. .... .... The Roman was Publius Flavius Vegetius Renatus; (03/29/13)


CHICK-FIL-EH?

Ken Berwitz

Last year it was widely reported that Dan Cathy, the head of the Chick-fil-A fast food chain is a very religious man who opposes gay marriage.

For that reason, there was a tidal wave of negative stories about Cathy, and the chain, in most mainstream media.  Some politicians even demanded that no Chick-fil-A restaurants be allowed to open in their districts/cities (in the name of tolerance, mind you).

At that time, Cathy assured people that his was a personal view which did not inform how the restaurants were run or who was or was not welcome in them.  I don't recall any gay people claiming they were refused service at a Chick-fil-A unit because of their sexual orientation, so it seems reasonable to conclude he was on the level.  Still, the protests, demands for boycotts and demands to disallow the chains from opening in certain places continued - at least for a while.

Today we have this interesting piece of news, as excerpted from a story at Fox News:

A California Chick-fil-A surprised gay marriage supporters at a rally by passing out free meals coupons, despite the fast food chain's COO's outspoken stance against same-sex marriage.

The Los Angeles Daily News reports Corey Braun, the owner and operator of a franchise in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., says he felt the gathering was an opportunity to show hospitality to members of his community, regardless of their beliefs. 

"I wanted to show that Chick-fil-A doesn't discriminate against anybody," Braun told the Los Angeles Daily News. "We serve everyone. We're happy to serve the community and this was an opportunity to have this group come in and show them our hospitality regardless of their beliefs, sexual orientation, or whatever."

Am I surprised?  No, I am not.  Let me again point out that with all the protests, boycott demands, etc. it was never demonstrated that Chick-fil-A restaurants discriminated against gay people.

Personally, I strongly support same-sex marriage and disagree with Dan Cathy's views.  But I just as strongly support freedom of thought.  Mr. Cathy has every right in the world to believe anything he wants, as long as he does not impose his beliefs on others.  And he apparently does not.

So what is the problem, other than some people demanding everyone think the way they do - which, last time I checked, IS imposing beliefs on others?

That's something those people ought to think long and hard about.


BAIPA: PRESIDENT OBAMA FINDS AN ALLY

Ken Berwitz

BAIPA, as regular readers must know, stands for the Born Alive Infant Protection Act.

BAIPA, which was passed by the US congress in 2002, says that if a baby survives an abortion attempt and is born alive, the doctor has to treat the child as what he/she is:  a child.  That is, the doctor has to do whatever is necessary for the child to survive. 

That would seem like a no-brainer, wouldn't it?  We are not talking about an abortion here (though an end-of term abortion is sick enough by itself), we are talking about a live, out-of-the-womb born human being.

But Barack Obama, as an Illinois State Senator, was a one man brick wall against BAIPA. 

When the bill was introduced in the Illinois State legislature - having been written after it become evident that newborn, abortion-surviving babies in at least one Chicago hospital (and who knows how many others) were literally being left to die - Mr. Obama held it up for years.  His reason?  The (absolutely BS) claim that its wording, if interpreted a certain way, conceivably might prevent a woman from being able to have an abortion (a late term abortion, obviously, which Barack Obama has never had any problem with). 

But even when the wording of the Illinois bill was modified in a way that would render any effect on abortion nonexistent - the exact same wording as the bill which passed through the US Congress with virtually no opposition on either side of the aisle - Obama still held it up, right up until he left for the U.S. Senate.  Once Obama was gone, it sailed through the state legislature just as easily as it did through the US Congress. 

Obviously, this was not a partisan issue:  not if just every Democrat and Republican was in favor of it.  This was a Barack Obama issue.  And we will never know how many babies died because of his sick intransigence on this legislation.

Ok, so much for history.  Let's move to the present.

In Florida, we have found one of the few other people ghoulish enough to be OK with live babies being consigned to the death penalty for their crime of surviving an abortion - i.e a previous attempt on their lives.

This ghoul is named alisa lapolt snow, and she is a lobbyist for Planned Parenthood. 

Here, excerpted from John McCormack's article at weeklystandard.com, is her view of what to do with a live, abortion-surviving baby:

Florida legislators considering a bill to require abortionists to provide medical care to an infant who survives an abortion were shocked during a committee hearing this week when a Planned Parenthood official endorsed a right to post-birth abortion.

Alisa LaPolt Snow, the lobbyist representing the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, testified that her organization believes the decision to kill an infant who survives a failed abortion should be left up to the woman seeking an abortion and her abortion doctor.

"So, um, it is just really hard for me to even ask you this question because I'm almost in disbelief," said Rep. Jim Boyd. "If a baby is born on a table as a result of a botched abortion, what would Planned Parenthood want to have happen to that child that is struggling for life?"

"We believe that any decision that's made should be left up to the woman, her family, and the physician," said Planned Parenthood lobbyist Snow.

Rep. Jose Oliva followed up, asking the Planned Parenthood official, "You stated that a baby born alive on a table as a result of a botched abortion that that decision should be left to the doctor and the family. Is that what you're saying?"

Again, Snow replied, "That decision should be between the patient and the health care provider."

You cannot make this stuff up.  And why would you ever want to?

What kind of a human being - if the term even fits alisa lapolt snow; I'm not at all sure it does - conversationally tells you that it is just hunky-dory if a live, newborn child dies either by neglect or by being killed outright, which right after birth, are the only two ways it can happen?

How sick, how depraved, how ghoulish must you be to take this position? 

Does Planned Parenthood agree that live babies should be left to die or be killed?  Have we heard from the organization itself regarding what its own lobbyist said on its behalf in testimony to the Florida legislature?

Let me end with my personal position on this matter.  Speaking as a normal human being, lapolt - and anyone who agrees with her about these babies - should rot in hell.


HOW PARTISAN IS NBC NEWS?

Ken Berwitz

I often talk about how partisan NBC news is - not that other mainstream media venues are impartial, but because NBC is among the worst offenders.

Want to know why?  Glad you asked.

-On March 11th Kwame Kilpatrick, the disgraced former Mayor of Detroit who already has served jail time, was convicted on 24 counts of racketeering, extortion and bribery. 

Here is the NBC News story, straight from its web site.  As you can see, the headline is "Ex-Detroit mayor Kilpatrick convicted of range of corruption charges":  no mention of party affiliation.  You have to go down to paragraph 6, to find the single mention that "Kilpatrick, a Democrat....".  And there is no mention of any kind that Kilpatrick reflects in any way on the Democrat Party.

-Today, NBC is running a story about Don Young, a congressperson from Alaska, who used the derisive term "wetbacks" when referring to Mexicans who used to work on his father's ranch; an offense that I hope we can agree is a bit less significant than the former Mayor of a major city being convicted on 24 counts of racketeering, extortion and bribery.

Here is the NBC News story, straight from its web site.  As you can see, the headline is "GOP congressman uses ethnic slur to describe laborers" - immediate mention of party affiliation.  You need go no further than the first words of the first paragraph to find Young described as "A Republican congressman from Alaska ". 

And the fourth paragraph says "While the veteran congressman wasn't referring directly to immigration reform, his remarks certainly cut against the broader Republican effort to repair the party's dismal image with Latino voters", thus specifically indicating that Young's comment reflects on the entire Republican Party.

Anyone still wondering why I call NBC partisan?  I didn't think so.

free` Ken, What's the problem? That looks like good old 'journalism' at its finest. If you want "REPORTING" you will need to find a time machine and go back in time, to when reporters reported the news. (03/29/13)


THE CHRIS HAYES/MSNBC QUOTA SYSTEM

Ken Berwitz

Here's an interesting little flash for you:  Chris Hayes, who's "All In" show will replace Ed Schultz in MSNBC's 8:00PM slot next week, has decided to specifically quota guests by race and gender. 

None of that "here are the best people we can find for this topic" from Chris. No, no, no.  That would be ridiculous.  Much better to do a nose count by race and gender to make sure that the guest list will be acceptable to Black activists, the NOW executive board and those other folks whose main concern is, er, honest, impartial news reporting.

 Here, excerpted from an article by Columbia Journalism Review's Ann Friedman (who, it should be noted, is quite sympathetic to Hayes) is how he tried to accomplish this on his previous show, and how he intends to do it on his new one:

"We just would look at the board and say, "We already have too many white men. We can't have more.' Really, that was it," Hayes says. "Always, constantly just counting. Monitoring the diversity of the guests along gender lines, and along race and ethnicity lines." Out of four panelists on every show, he and his booking producers ensured that at least two were women. "A general rule is if there are four people sitting at table, only two of them can be white men," he says. "Often it would be less than that."

If they did end up booking a show that featured a majority of white men, they'd call it "taking a gender hit." Hayes explains, "and then we'd be like, well, we have to make up for that either in the second half of the show or on the Sunday show."

In other words: quotas. Hard quotas.

That's right, Ann.  Hard quotas.

Do you need me to tell you what an anal cavity Chris Hayes is?  I would hope not.

Here's a great idea for Hayes (and for MSNBC which, by putting this weenie on TV, sanctions what he is doing):  pick the best guests you can find for a segment - the ones who have the most to offer about the topic being discussed.  If they are all White men, so be it.  If they are a mix of White and Black, men and women, so be it.  If they are all Black women, so be it.  Heck, you can even throw in some Asians.  Arabs.  Aleuts.  Anyone at all.

But if your primary concern is to prove that you have booked juu-u-u-u-uust the right percentages of race and ethnicity in the population, without regard to what you are discussing or who would be in the best position to discuss it?  Then you are nothing but a ridiculous, left wing jerk, who will be embraced by MSNBC's core viewership (i.e. fellow left wingers and right wingers who want to be outraged), while being either ignored or laughed at by everyone else.

Let me end by asking a question:  What do you call someone committed to hard racial and gender quotas?  You sure as hell don't call that person a liberal.  So what word would you use instead? 

Tell you what:  ask yourself what fair-minded people have called anyone who insisted on racial and gender quotas in the past.   Got a few words - or, more exactly, epithets - in mind? 

It is amazing how much racism and bigotry is spewed by people - often with the best of intentions - who have convinced themselves they are against racism and bigotry.

Zeke .... ..... .... How many left-handed, paraplegic, Samoan, vegans did Hayes have on his last broadcast ? . . . . . . (03/29/13)


SEQUESTER WATCH  

Ken Berwitz

It is day 29 of the sequester.  

Do you feel any different?  Do you think anything has changed?  Do you think the country has gone to hell in a handbasket?

No?  Me neither.

But now, in the absence of any discernible problem over the reduction of about 1% of our ridiculously deficit-ridden $3.6 Trillion dollar budget, Obama & Co. are going to retry a strategy that has not worked so far:  scaring the bejeezus out of us.

Call it - with apologies to author Hugh J. Schonfield - "The Passover Plot".

During Passover, Jews tell the story of their exodus from Egypt, and how the Pharaoh was subjected to ten plagues before he agreed to Moses' demand that he "let my people go".  Specifically, the plagues were:  water turning to blood, frogs, lice, swarms of flies, pestilence upon beasts (cattle, horses, etc.), skin boils, hail, locusts, darkness and, finally, the death of first-born sons (which, at least for a while, did the trick). 

In Obama's Passover Plot, we have.....well, let me show you, via an excerpt from Daniel Sarenson Sohn's piece for politico.com:

The public has largely tuned out the Democrats' repeated warnings about mid-air plane crashes, troop deaths and mass illness from tainted meat if the sequester cuts stay in place.

But Democrats aren't dropping the threat of disaster, seizing now on the line they think can beat the Republicans: law and order.

Prison riots, cocaine flooding the streets, terrorists on board airplanes - even hurricanes and tornadoes left undetected by budget-slashed agencies - have moved front and center as Democrats try to get the public behind blaming the Republicans.

The whole thing leaves Democrats looking a little like they're rooting for bad news - though they insist that they're only saying what is likely to happen if the money isn't replenished.

"A significant event would certainly alter the mindset," said Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-N.C.), of the public attitude toward sequester.

Mr. Sohn has it exactly right.  Democrats look like they're rooting for bad news - bad news which, I suspect, fewer and fewer people believe will come.  Read that quote from Rep. Butterfield:  does its tone come across as worried...or hopeful?  You tell me.

Democrats desperately need a crisis to "prove" Barack Obama was right about what horrible consequences would come down on us if there were forced cuts in our impossibly bloated deficit spending.  And, by God, they are going to come up with one, even if they have to create the crisis out of thin air - while hoping you are "low information" enough to be convinced it is real. 

But in the absence of any such real crisis, they are now reduced to pumping out a Passover Plot - their own list of plagues - to scare us into thinking that the loss of a tiny fraction of our record-high budget is some kind of cataclysmic event.

And do not doubt for a second, that his Passover Plot will be used to explain away any bad thing that happens in government until the sequester issue is resolved.

How many of us will be gullible enough to believe it?  That remains to be seen.


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