Articles

Monday, March 20, 2017

Trump vs. Obama

Obama is a coward.

Trump will call someone a name while Obama will anonymously source a smear through three levels of staffers, political allies and reporters. Trump called CNN “Fake News” on camera. Obama sourced Operation Rushbo, targeting Rush Limbaugh, through a variety of White House people and left-wing allies. Trump will boot reporters he doesn’t like. Obama authorized secretly hacking the emails of a FOX News reporter. Trump had an openly hostile conversation with the Prime Minister of Australia. When Obama wanted to call Netanyahu “chickens__t”, he did it by having one of his people anonymously plant it with a reliable media sycophant, The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, before later having a spokesman disavow it. Poultry ordure doesn’t smell any worse than that.

But Obama is very careful to launch dirty attacks without getting any on his hands. The insults are anonymously sourced. The retaliation comes out of the bowels of the bureaucracy. And he only finds out about it from the media. That allows him to retain what he cares about most: his popularity.

Obama and his people like to think that their dishonesty is a superpower. They pat themselves on the back for stabbing everyone else in theirs. Sometimes their smugness over how well they use the media to lie and smear gets out of control. Like the time Obama’s Goebbels, Ben Rhodes, boasted to the New York Times about how easy it was to fool everyone about the deal to protect Iran’s nuclear program.

After Trump won, it was business as usual.

Obama put on his best imitation of decency while his people went on preparing to undermine Trump at every turn by smearing him, wiretapping him and doing everything possible, legally and illegally, to bring him down. It was the same phony act that he had pulled for eight years, bemoaning the lack of bipartisanship while ruling unilaterally as a dictator, destroying the Constitution while hectoring us about our values, denouncing racism while organizing race riots, complaining about the echo chamber while constructing one and lecturing us on civility while smearing anyone who disagreed.

Trump’s killer instinct lies in understanding that hypocrisy conceals weakness. That is what powered him through the primaries and then through an election. His instinct is to grapple directly with a target. That is also the source of his popularity. Meanwhile the source of Obama’s popularity is his hollow likability. He’s likable only because he is almost always too cowardly to say what he really thinks.

Americans have seen the real Trump: because he is, in his own way, always real. Obama is always unreal. When Trump and Obama have appeared together, Obama seemed less real. He is a brand wrapped in all sorts of images that have nothing to do with who he really is.

Trump has always understood that Obama’s bravado was hollow. Obama boasted that he would have defeated Trump. Then he went on to try to do that with attacks from behind the scenes routed through government loyalists and media operatives while pretending that he had nothing to do with any of it.

But Obama and his people had learned nothing from how Trump had won the election. When Trump is attacked, his response is to go directly for the attacker, no matter what the argument is or how it’s sourced. Trump doesn’t get bogged down in debates or befuddled by media echo chambers that are so totally enveloping that they resemble reality. He just smashes past them to the source of the smear.

That is exactly what he did by calling out Obama’s eavesdropping. He bypassed all the layers that Obama had put in place to insulate himself from involvement in the attack, the media echo chamber, the staffers who handed information to the media and the government loyalists who provided the information to the staffers, to strike at the wizard behind the curtain.

And, in doing so, he made a mockery of Obama’s bravado.

When Obama boasted that he could have beaten Trump, he meant that he could have done so using the same tactics that worked so well against McCain and Romney. Like most of the media, he had failed to understand that these tactics don’t work against Trump because he is a moving target. Trump created his own brand. Unlike most presidential candidates, he doesn’t need consultants, and unlike most Republicans, he isn’t worried at all about likability. That’s why he won an election and still has majority support for his policies, including the most controversial ones, despite poor likability.

Obama is obsessed with being liked. In the media space, effective messaging depends on likability. But Trump upended the same formula that had ruled presidential politics since Nixon vs. Kennedy. Instead he casually tosses likability aside to grapple with opponents, rivals and enemies. Trump won this election by forcing opponent after opponent to either fight him on his own terms or back away.

This includes the media, which has tried to grapple directly with him, with disastrous results.

The Obama machine, a massive propaganda matrix that alternates between lying and gaslighting, is not built to handle Trump. And Obama isn’t built to handle Trump either. Obama’s hipster transgressiveness made him seem cool when up against Romney or McCain, but everything Trump does embodies real transgressiveness. The machine is built on limiting the freedom of action of Republicans by intimidating them with political correctness and potential smears. But Trump doesn’t care about any of that.

Trump is willing to throw everything into an attack. Obama’s people build complicated traps that he walks through without thinking twice. Obama plays chess. Trump overturns the board.

Obama’s strategy was to create so much chaos that the White House wouldn’t be able to get anything done. Instead it would ricochet from scandal to scandal. Similar tactics had proven quite effective in the second terms of Reagan and Bush. But Trump thrives on chaos. Many of his supporters want him to be a disrupter. Chaos translates to effectiveness. The more noise he makes, the more he’s changing things.

President Trump has made it clear that in response to these attacks, he will directly challenge Obama. And that breaks down Obama’s entire plan of using proxies to do his dirty work while he gives inspiring speeches. Trump will not let Obama get away with attacking him and then hiding behind phony idealism. And he intends to make the Obama machine into the issue in these attacks.

Obama’s plan involved a gradual emergence to deliver more sanctimonious lectures about “who we are”. It did not involve getting directly into a fight with Trump. But, as his other opponents discovered, Trump doesn’t give you a choice.

The favorite quote of Clinton’s damage control man Chris Lehane came from Mike Tyson. “Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” Obama’s people like to think that this is what they’ve done to Republicans, Iran Deal opponents, police officers and even President Trump. But Trump is showing them what the expression really means.

Obama had a plan. Then Trump punched him in the mouth.

The plan to entangle key Trump people in scandals hit a roadblock. Instead the wiretapping accusations have become the issue. And Obama’s people have been forced to come out and offer cautious denials.

And Obama and his dirty tricks have been dragged out from behind the curtain.

Trump and Obama are two very different men. Their personalities, as much as their politics, will define this conflict. The media routinely accuses Trump of having totalitarian instincts. But the true totalitarians are men like Obama those who hypocritically use the machinery of government to go after their opponents while pretending to be virtuous. President Trump has always fought his fights directly.

And the battle for America has only begun.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Price of Privilege

A proposal has been making its way through the social justice sewer system to have white people pay a 5% privilege tax.

That would be a lot cheaper than the current wealth redistribution built into the tax system.

In 2004, black people made up 12% of the population and 20% of those who didn’t file taxes at all. It was estimated that 50.7% of African American households, 52% of Hispanic households and 37% of white households paid no income taxes.

The numbers would likely have only gotten worse after the recession, which destroyed large numbers of African-American jobs, and the Obama years, which traded social welfare for economic progress,

An otherwise equal tax system with a 5% white privilege tax would be an enormous improvement.

How do you calculate the income losses for a white student shut out of college by affirmative action or a white business owner’s income losses due to preferential business programs aimed at minorities?

The white student would happily pay that 5% to be allowed to go to college instead of being told that more diverse students with worse grades will cut ahead of him in line because they are “disadvantaged”. It would be easier for the white business owner to calculate in a fixed privilege tax for an otherwise competitive market than the intangible forms of diversity discrimination that rig the game.

A 5% white privilege tax would be far too honest. The real tax is hidden and much higher.

But the white privilege tax does raise all sorts of fascinating questions. How do you calculate it? It can’t be by appearing or identifying as a minority. Such an unfair performative system would allow Rachel Dolezal, aka Nkechi Diallo, to escape paying her white privilege tax after unfairly exploiting her white privilege to head the NAACP.

If white people can just braid their hair in dreadlocks and spend a week in a tanning salon before renaming themselves Mkesi Daluboo or Willami Clintonoo, what good is a white privilege tax?

The only fair way to do it is with a DNA test.

Commercially available DNA tests make it easy to calculate the percentage of European and more diversely non-European ancestry. Every taxpayer could establish the exact diversity of his ancestry and determine his privilege tax that way.

The results would be interesting.

The average African-American is around a quarter European. That means he would be required to pay a 1.25% white privilege tax. Obama’s white privilege tax would be at least 2.5%. It would have been higher, but Africans have less European ancestry, with its accompanying white privilege, than African-Americans, even though they were never actually enslaved in the United States.

Henry Louis Gates Jr, the Obama pal who blamed racism for his confrontation with police, has 50% European ancestry. That will be a 2.5% white privilege tax. Please.

Latinos in this country average around 70 percent European ancestry. That’s a 3.5% white privilege tax.

The minority taxpayer likely to end up with the lowest white privilege tax would be Asian-American. Asian-Americans have some of the highest economic performance around, but they are also untainted by the evil curse of white privilege having no European ancestry whatsoever.

But Asian-Americans do have high intermarriage rates so before long their children, like much of the population of the United States, will end up with European ancestry and white privilege.

Is there an alternative to this madness?

We could make the white privilege tax performative so that Rachel Dolezal would pay zero white privilege tax while Clarence Thomas would pay 5 percent.

The wealthy white boy in dreadlocks who lights up at Bob Marley tribute concerts and denounces our “unjust, racist society” would be free of his white privilege tax while his fellow African-American student who is poor, works hard and speaks like William F. Buckley would be hit with the full privilege tax bill.

If race is just a social construct then we might as well be honest about rewarding obnoxious behavior.

Rachel Dolezal can run the NAACP, teach a useless identity politics course, sell hideous identity politics art, then go on food stamps after her fraud is exposed, and write a book blaming racism. The social construct we’re rewarding here is not race, but obnoxious and exploitative behavior.

And anyone can be obnoxious.

We can punish white privilege based on DNA tests or based on behavior. But the vast majority of Americans have European ancestry. And those who have the least European ancestry also have the least history of oppression. The mad social justice impulse to eradicate “whiteness” is a campaign to eradicate America. The only people who could be pure of “white privilege” are the newest immigrants from cultures that were too far away, xenophobic or homogenous to have European ancestry.

Only Japan or Saudi Arabia can be truly free of white privilege.

Either that or we follow the sordid tradition of punishing ideas of race. We can tax people for being insufficiently stereotypical. We can harm those who strive to succeed to benefit the Al Sharpton and Rachel Dolezal shakedown crew who monetize the failures of communities for their own profit.

There is one more option.

We can be Americans. We are, as President Trump said, “one people, with one destiny. We all bleed the same blood. We all salute the same flag. And we are all made by the same God.”

The civil war and the civil rights movement were both made possible by that common understanding of nationhood and origin. But the sad legacy of the civil rights movement is that it descended into divisive Black Nationalist movements that rejected a common nationhood and into radical leftist politics that rejected religion, while, in the Obama style, appropriating its dramatic gestures and oratorical force.

Take away any national commonality and you are left with quarreling tribes using bloc voting, group alliances and aggrieved narratives to lay claim to power and privilege.

Anti-racism has become a narrow tribal campaign that invokes diversity to appear universal. Its goal is not a more united country, but a more successfully divided one. The strange alliance of white leftists who want to destroy “whiteness” to create a truly universal society and Black Nationalists who want a tribal society can only result in a nation that is less united and more divided along the lines of race.

So why not levy a 5% white privilege tax? Every racist movement blames its abuses on its victims. It calls its greed, justice and its hatred, love of its own people. It makes up for its insecurity with anger.

That is all the social justice movements of the left have to offer us. They campaign against racism with more racism. A toxic mix of narcissistic self-pity, angry insecurity and entitled greed lurks under their pseudointellectual identity politics. The men who founded this nation were not perfect, but they believed in being better than they were. The leftists riding the nuclear bomb of identity politics down through the clouds to a radioactive utopia of utter misery believe only in making it worse.

Former Attorney General Eric Holder was right. We are a nation of cowards on race. And that is what he, and the other racists and radicals, are counting on. We are too afraid to defy those who divide us.

Too afraid to stand up to him and to all those like him who have been passing off racism as progress, too afraid of false accusations of racism by racists like him and too afraid to rebuild this country as a united nation rather than a collection of intersectional tribes allied against the idea of a common racial enemy.

We can be one nation. Or we can start charging racial taxes. The choice is ours.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Obama's Third Term is Here

After Trump secured the nomination, Obama’s people filed a wiretapping request. As he was on the verge of winning, they did it again. After he won, they are doing everything they can to bring him down.

It was always going to come down to this.

One is the elected President of the United States. The other is the Anti-President who commands a vast network that encompasses the organizers of OFA, the official infrastructure of the DNC and Obama Anonymous, a shadow government of loyalists embedded in key positions across the government.

A few weeks after the election, I warned that Obama was planning to run the country from outside the White House. And that the “Obama Anonymous” network of staffers embedded in the government was the real threat. Since then Obama’s Kalorama mansion has become a shadow White House. And the Obama Anonymous network is doing everything it can to bring down an elected government.

Valerie Jarrett has moved into the shadow White House to plot operations against Trump. Meanwhile Tom Perez has given him control of the corpse of the DNC after fending off a Sandernista bid from Keith Ellison. Obama had hollowed out the Democrat Party by diverting money to his own Organizing for America. Then Hillary Clinton had cannibalized it for her presidential bid through Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and Donna Brazile. Now Obama owns the activist, OFA, and organizational, DNC, infrastructure.

But that’s just half the picture.

Obama controls the opposition. He will have a great deal of power to choose future members of Congress and the 2020 candidate. But he could have done much of that from Chicago or New York. The reason he didn’t decide to move on from D.C. is that the nation’s capital contains the infrastructure of the national government. He doesn’t just want to run the Democrats. He wants to run America.

The other half of the picture is the Obama Deep State. This network of political appointees, bureaucrats and personnel scattered across numerous government agencies is known only as Obama Anonymous.

Obama Inc. had targeted Trump from the very beginning when it was clear he would be the nominee.

Trump had locked down the GOP nomination in May. Next month there was a FISA request targeting him. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court denied the request, and it is still unknown whether the request targeted Trump, or only his associates, but it’s silly to pretend that the submission of such a request a month after he became the presumptive GOP nominee was apolitical.

The second, narrower, FISA request came through in October. This one was approved. The reason for getting a FISA request in October was even more obvious than June. October is the crucial month in presidential elections. It’s the month of the “October Surprise” when the worst hit pieces based on the keenest opposition research is unleashed. Obama’s opposition research on Trump involved eavesdropping on a server in Trump Tower. Nixon would have been very jealous.

After the election, Obama Inc. began to spread out its bets. Some of his people migrated into his network of political organizations. Others remained embedded in the government. While the former would organize the opposition, the latter would sabotage, undermine and try to bring down Trump.

An unprecedented campaign for full spectrum dominance was being waged in domestic politics.

Political opposition wasn’t a new phenomenon; even if a past president centralizing control of the organizational and activist arms of his party to wage war on his successor was unprecedented. But weaponizing unelected government officials to wage war on an elected government was a coup.

Obama Anonymous conducted its coup in layers. The first layer partnered congressional Democrats with OA personnel to retain control of as much of the government as possible by the Obama Deep State. They did it by blocking Trump’s nominees with endless hearings and protests. The second layer partnered congressional Democrats with the deeper layer of Obama operatives embedded in law enforcement and intelligence agencies who were continuing the Obama investigations of Trump.

This second layer sought to use the investigation to force out Trump people who threatened their control over national security, law enforcement and intelligence. It is no coincidence that their targets, Flynn and Sessions, were in that arena. Or that their views on Islamic terror and immigration are outside the consensus making them easy targets for Obama Anonymous and its darker allies.

These darker allies predate Obama. The tactics being deployed against Trump were last used by them in a previous coup during President Bush’s second term. The targets back then had included Bush officials, an Iran skeptic, pro-Israel activists and a Democrat congresswoman. The tactics, eavesdropping, leaks, false investigations, dubious charges and smear campaigns against officials, were exactly the same.

Anyone who remembers the cases of Larry Franklin, Jane Harman and some others will recognize them. Before that they were used to protect the CIA underestimates of Soviet capabilities that were broken through by Rumsfeld’s Halloween Massacre and Team B which helped clear the way for Reagan’s defeat of the Soviet Union.

Under Bush, the Deep State was fighting against any effort to stop Iran’s nuclear program. It did so by eliminating and silencing opposition within the national security establishment and Congress through investigations of supposed foreign agents. That left the field clear for it to force a false National Intelligence Estimate on President Bush which claimed that Iran had halted its nuclear program.

Obama broke out the same tactics when he went after Iran Deal opponents. Once again members of Congress were spied on and the results were leaked to friendly media outlets. Before the wiretapping of Trump’s people, the NSA was passing along conversations of Iran Deal opponents to the White House which were used to coordinate strategy in defense of the illegal arrangement with Islamic terrorists.

The same wall between government and factional political agendas that Nixon’s “White House Plumbers” had broken through on the way to Watergate had been torn down. NSA eavesdropping was just another way to win domestic political battles. All it took was accusing the other side of treason.

And worse was to come.

During the Iran Deal battle, the NSA was supposedly filtering the eavesdropped data it passed along.

In its last days, Obama Inc. made it easier to pass along unfiltered personal information to the other agencies where Obama loyalists were working on their investigation targeting Trump. The NSA pipeline now makes it possible for the shadow White House to still gain intelligence on its domestic enemies.

And the target of the shadow White House is the President of the United States.

There is now a President and an Anti-President. A government and a shadow government. The anti-President controls more of the government through his shadow government than the real President.

The Obama network is an illegal shadow government. Even its “light side” as an opposition group is very legally dubious. Its “shadow side” is not only illegal, but a criminal attack on our democracy.

When he was in power, Obama hacked reporters like FOX News’ James Rosen and CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson. He eavesdropped on members of Congress opposed to the Iran Deal. Two men who made movies he disliked ended up in jail. But what he is doing now is even more deeply disturbing.

Obama no longer legally holds power. His Deep State network is attempting to overturn the results of a presidential election using government employees whose allegiance is to a shadow White House. Tactics that were illegal when he was in office are no longer just unconstitutional, they are treasonous.

Obama Inc. has become a state within a state. It is a compartmentalized network of organizations, inside and outside the government, that claim that they are doing nothing illegal as individual groups because they are technically following the rules within each compartment, but the sheer scope of the illegality lies in the covert coordination between these “revolutionary cells” infecting our country.

It is a criminal conspiracy of unprecedented scope. Above all else, it is the most direct attack yet on a country in which governments are elected by the people, not by powerful forces within the government.

"We here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain,” President Lincoln declared at Gettysburg. “That this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

Obama’s shadow government is not just a war on President Trump. It is a war on that government of the people, by the people and for the people. If he succeeds, then at his touch, it will perish from the earth.

Obama’s third term has begun. Our Republic is in danger.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

The Endless Ages of Purim

Tonight the celebration of the holiday of Purim begins. Purim is a Jewish holiday often neglected outside the more religious communities in America and the State of Israel because it commemorates an attempt to exterminate the Jews. And we all know that stopped being a problem long ago.

If Purim had culminated with some smart power diplomacy and a lesson on tolerance, liberal Jews might be more inclined to celebrate it. Unfortunately it ends with a genocidal madman being hung from a tree and the Jews fighting for their lives, winning and slaughtering their enemies.

And instead of feeling guilty about it, their descendants eat pastries, dress up in costumes and get drunk. At least those of their descendants who believe in survival instead of surrender.

Liberal Jews complain about the difference of values they have with Israeli Jews who insist on survival instead of surrender. They have an even bigger difference of values with the Jews of the Bible. And with Jews throughout history. Not to mention with the religion of the Jewish people.

The more liberal a Jew is, the less likely he is to celebrate the substance of his people's holidays as they conflict with his worldview and virtues. Moshe, the Maccabees and Mordechai don't seem like role models, not even if you rebrand them as community organizers and claim that they were fighting prejudice. There is something relentlessly bloody-minded about them. They care very little about a sustainable environment or LGBT rights, and instead walk through the corpses of their enemies with no regrets or apologetic winces. They stand up for their own people in a regrettable show of tribalism that perpetuates the cycle of violence instead of preaching about Tikkun Olam.

The story of the Megillah, the Scroll of Esther, is the story of how Mordechai, the descendant of the first Jewish king of Israel, snubbed the Grand Vizier of a multicultural empire by refusing to bow to him. The obstinate Benjaminite so infuriated the Vizier that he plotted to kill all the Jews.

The smart thing to do would have been to bow to Haman. To invite him to AIPAC and let him give a pre-written speech and then give him a standing ovation. Then the important official might have been willing to help out the struggling Jews of the Second Commonwealth in Israel. Instead the narrow-minded fanatic offended Haman. And the angry Agagite decides to strangle the newly reborn Second Commonwealth of Israel and all the other Jews throughout the Persian Empire.

By refusing to bow to Haman, Mordechai had turned the formerly moderate Haman into an extremist. He had radicalized him. Jewish leaders hurried to reassure Haman that this fanatic was in no way representative of their values of tolerance and appeasement. Hadn't they attended the feast where the sacred vessels of their own people were used to serve wine and spirits to the mob? Rather than anticipating the return to their land at the end of the prophesied 70 year period of exile, they had cheered the brutish tyrant and made Sushan, his capital, into their new holy city.

A few tens of thousands had gone back to Israel, which the empire had repopulated with other peoples. There they struggled to survive, building half the day and keeping watch with their spears from the time the stars came out until the sun rose.  Most Jews however had remained behind in the Persian Empire. The struggling settlements of the Jews under the last of the prophets seemed like a futile proposition. The future belonged to empires, to Babylon, Persia and Rome. 

There was no room anymore for the sort of pride displayed by Mordechai. This was Haman's hour. Israel was gone and would never return. Rebuilding the Temple was a fool's dream. Why go off to some place your ancestors had come from, to slave in the hot sun, to choke on dust and sleep with a spear by your side expecting an attack from the nomads that had settled in the land?

In Sushan, the wine is plentiful, the bazaars are never closed and the empire will never fall.

There is no room for ancient dreams in the new empire. No room for old fables about slavery and freedom. Perhaps in ancient times some deity had liberated them from Egypt, but here in the modern present, it was the fall of the Babylonian Empire which had raised them up out of slavery and given them a place among the subject peoples of a new empire. They bowed to Haman and to the new order. They gave up their dreams and their religion and drank headily of the wine at the festival of the king. On their couches, they dreamed they saw a new world opening before them.

But Mordechai, narrow-minded fanatic that he was, only saw an old world. And he was determined to fight for it. He wasn't willing to let the old dreams die. To bow to Haman and to imagine, as so many Jewish leaders have done, that some accommodation with evil could be made on mutually beneficial terms. Mordechai was not a man of the Empire. He was an Ish Yehudi. A Jew.

He saw through the illusion of empires and new ages. He saw what his first ancestor had seen when he looked at the sky. He saw that the only true permanence was G-d. Nations would fall, empires would perish and even the stars would burn out. Only G-d would endure.

And so he did not bow. And Haman understood what his refusal meant.

Had Mordechai refused to bow out of personal pride, Haman might have had him and his family killed. But Mordechai refused to bow to Haman because he was a Jew. Haman sensed that the old man had seen through him. The emperor was naked. The old man in rags at the gates did not worship power. He might rule, but had no appetite for it. He worshiped only G-d.

Was it personal conviction? Haman investigated and learned that Mordechai was a member of an  obscure people. A people who do not worship the empire, but worship G-d.

And so they all had to die. The king was bribed. The letters were sealed and sent. The decree was death. It was all over.

But Mordechai had seen more than the nakedness of Haman, the crawling, insecure lackey, filled with hatred for the Persian ruler, flattering him and craving the ultimate power he could not have. He had seen the nakedness of the empire and the age. His eyes had seen past the horses and palaces, the ranks of scribes penning decrees, the harems, bureaucracies and armies.

Mordechai knew that all this would pass away. He had seen through the illusion that every age brings with it the end of history, a new age whose achievements break with the past and usher in a boundless future. The shadow crosses the sundial, the walls come crashing down and the new era of history ends up buried under the rubble of time.

Exile divides the Jewish people into Jews and New Age Jews. Jews wander on their meandering course through history concerning themselves with a past that modern people dismiss as myth and legend, more ancient than that story about Troy, and even more dubious.

The New Age Jews always see the coming of a new era of history, a bright and shining plateau that makes all those old moldy beliefs completely irrelevant. History ends and now a new age of human progress begins. The age of Alexandria, the age of Sushan, the age of Berlin. How, in such a new age, could they be expected to take a few bygone fairy tales retold by barbarians seriously? Such things weren't for enlightened people who were witnessing the peak of human civilization.

The old Jews know what the New Age Jews do not, that history has not ended, that the past is still with us and that it has sharp teeth. They know that Man has not changed, that his sophistication is still only a shell and that sooner or later the shell cracks. If it does not crack from within, then it is cracked from without. 

Those who feel time in their bones know the patterns of history, reading ages like constellations, can never lose themselves in one age or fall into the fallacy of a new era. They know that there is nothing new under the sun. Machines may come and go, but the world is a broken place because the hearts of men have not turned from their ways. And so they remember that every age carries within it the seeds of its ruin. They witness the ruin, climb out of the ashes and move on.

Liberal pieties embrace the new age, fixate on a final transformative era of history at the hands of messiahs who promise hope and change, who will uplift us and inspire us to make the world into a better place. But history never ends. That is the lesson of the Holocaust, of Purim and of countless other horrifying intrusions of the old into the new. The shining new era that begins with grand public spectacles and displays of the power and might of an empire, ends with corpses and men and women fighting and running for their lives.

Jews like Mordechai understand this. New Age Jews do not.

The confrontation between Mordechai and Haman was a collision between two different conceptions of history. It was a contest for the Jewish soul.

Mordechai defied Haman to remind the Jews, who had abandoned religion and nation for the new age of the Persian Empire, of the ugly and bloody truths under the hollow glories of that new age.

In every age, the Jewish soul is nearly lost and then redeemed. The people seem on the verge of vanishing, but then survive. Mordechai understood that the future of the Jews did not depend on the Persian Empire. It depended on their willingness to remember who they were. And so he defied Haman and brought on a Holocaust. And at the end of it, the Jews fought for their survival.

Purim, a holiday preceded by a fast kept by the men going into battle and their loved ones, is not about forgiving your enemies, progressive taxation or coming out of the closet. It is about survival. Not mere survival, but the skin of the teeth sense of how close we came, that moment of revelation which pulls back the curtains of the material world and reminds us of the impossibility of our survival under all the ordinary rules of the world that new ages are found on. It reminds us that behind the scenes of the brick and mortar, steel and steam world, is something else entirely. A force that breaks apart the towers of history, that saves us when we should have died, that has entrusted us with a mission. It reminds us of what the world is and reminds us of Itself and of what we are.

When you stand on the edge of death, life is a revelation. It is not our deaths under the Egyptian sun, the blades and bullets of a thousand empires and kingdoms, or the ovens of Dachau that we are obsessed with. It is that moment of survival. The revelation that even amid the horrors of all that we have witnessed and the terrible things that we had to do to survive, we have risen out of the ground, watched the flesh cover our bones and stood alive again upon the earth. Every time we survive, we are reminded of the fragility of the world and of our enemies who wielding every power and trick, have failed to destroy us. Each time we rise, we transcend the world, in confronting our dead, we confront our immortality.

It is not a purely joyous experience. The day of Purim is preceded by a day of fasting. Before the celebration comes a day of battle as the struggle to survive, the long decline into the abyss, the final desperate hours, suddenly give way to the upheaval of an impossible salvation. We remember the pain, the sense of the grave closing over us, the bodies lying everywhere, the certainty that we will be next. We accept the hopelessness of our situation and then we walk out of the grave and praising G-d, sit down to the feast.

This is Jewish history. It is an alien one to the New Age Jew who clings tightly to the new era and its rules, to its pieties and its mores, who scowls at the old ones for refusing to come and join the imperial festivities where the vessels of the temple are used to serve drinks and the mob toasts that the 70 years have come and gone, and still there is no chance of the Jews returning to their Jerusalem and reclaiming the lost history. "The past is the past," says the New Age Jew. "The past is the present is the future," says the Jew.

The feast of the New Age is the celebration of the end of history, a golden time when there is an unlimited bounty for all, where the wine and the free health care will never run out, where everyone will live together under one government in perfect brotherhood for all time. Many Jews are drawn to this feast, its golden vessels, its vast bounty and its glorious ideals. But then enters the Grand Vizier and some of them begin to frown for though he wears rich garments and speaks soothing words, he is a monster. They don't always know how they know it, but it is a nagging feeling that creeps into them that there is something rotten at the heart of this new age.

Most of them still bow to him, touching their heads to the floor, some even embrace him and celebrate his vision. They assure others that he is our friend, the only man who can realize the promise of this age, a wise and noble leader whose vision of change brings new hope. But one or two stay away from the feast and refuse to bow to him. Instead they look to Jerusalem, to where the battle between good and evil was once fought, and where it will be fought again. They know him for what he is.


The Grand Vizier knows that he must destroy them, must destroy them all, because they have seen through what he is, and they have seen through the shallow trappings of the golden age of fools. They know that there is more to the world than the might of men and the cornucopias of kings. They know that he is not all-powerful and when he looks at them, a scowl wrinkles his face, because he knows it too.

So he casts a lot, random chance in a random world where chance is supreme and the whim of every ruler outweighs the weight of history. The bills are signed, the laws are passed, the decrees go out, the officers from the vast imperial bureaucracy are assigned to inform every citizen that their new age will be inaugurated with blood. A people who are not a proper part of the multicultural empire of laws must be wiped out in a properly democratic fashion. Crowd-sourced genocide.

And then the Grand Vizier ends up dangling from a rope, the tanks break through to Berlin, the chariots fall into the sea, the mustachioed dictator dies in a bedroom in Moscow his clothes soaked in his own urine-- and everything has gone completely wrong.

It's an old story and a new story. We tell it over and over again because it is always happening. It is our story and the story of the world. It is the story we have accepted from our parents and it is the story that we will pass on to our children. It is the story of the blood sacrifice of the New Age that goes wrong. The sacrifice survives, bloodied and scarred, the New Age goes down to ruin.


Purim exists because Queen Esther asked the Jews of Israel to write of her for generations. The Persian Empire she had become a part of, the sacrifice she made by leaving the physical stream of Jewish history to be repaid by becoming a vital part of its spiritual history, would fall. Not in her time, but it would. The memory would be carried on by the Jews. Purim is that memory.

Jewish holidays celebrate the interconnection of Jewish survival and productivity with G-d.  The Second Commonwealth fell. Israel may fall. A thousand years from now, the world may little resemble anything we can imagine. And yet, somewhere, Jewish children will celebrate Purim as they have for thousands of years. They may even celebrate other holidays, still unimagined, other memories of salvation from horrors yet to come and remembrances of tragedies yet to be experienced. And if we look through history, as Mordechai did through Haman and the Persian Empire, we may be able to see them on the other side, the descendants of those who survived the whips of Egypt, the slave markets of Babylon, the armies of Rome, the sword and the flame, the concentration camp and the suicide bomber, celebrating a million holidays yet to come.

Friday, March 03, 2017

How to Fake an Islamophobia Crisis

Look out! It’s another fake Islamophobia crisis.

“Huge Growth in Anti-Muslim Hate Groups During 2016: SPLC Report,” wails NBC News. “Watchdog: Number of anti-Muslim hate groups tripled since 2015,” FOX News bleats. ABC News vomits up this word salad. “Trump cited in report finding increase in US hate groups for 2nd year in a row.”

The SPLC stands for the Southern Poverty Law Center: an organization with slightly less credibility than Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Clown College, and without the academic degree in greasepaint.

And you won’t believe the shameless way the SPLC faked its latest Islamophobia crisis.

The Southern Poverty Law Center’s latest “hate group” sightings claims that the “number of anti-Muslim hate groups increased almost three-fold in 2016.”

That’s a lot of folds.

And there is both bad news and good news from its “Year in Hate and Extremism.”

First the good news.

Casa D’Ice Signs, the sign outside a bar in K-Mart Plaza in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, is no longer listed as a hate group. The sign outside the bar had been listed as a hate group by the SPLC for years. The owner of Casa D’Ice had been known for putting politically incorrect signs outside his bar. So the SPLC listed the “signs” as a hate group. (Even though there was only one sign.) Not the bar. That would have made too much sense.

Since then Casa D’Ice was sold and the SPLC has celebrated the defeat of another hate group. Even if the hate group was just a plastic sign outside a bar.

But the bad news, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, is that anti-Muslim hate groups shot up from only 34 in 2015 to 101 in 2016.

What could possibly account for that growth? Statistical fakery so fake that a Vegas bookie would weep.

President Trump is on the cover of the SPLC’s latest Intelligence Report: a misnomer of a title from an organization whose intelligence gathering led it to list a bar sign as a hate group.

But there’s actually another phenomenon responsible for this startling rise reported by the SPLC.

The SPLC decided to count 45 chapters of Act for America as separate groups.

How do you get a sudden rise from 34 to 101 hate groups? It helps to suddenly add 45 chapters of one group. Act for America isn’t a hate group. It’s also just as obviously not 45 groups.

And it didn’t come into existence last year.

Act for America was only listed as one group in the 2015 list. It shot up to 45 now.

The SPLC this year listed the Los Angeles chapter of Act for America as a separate group. But the chapter has been around for quite a few years.

Furthermore Act for America boasts not 45, but 1,000 chapters across the country. Why list just 45 of them? Look at it from the SPLC’s perspective. Next year, it can add 200 chapters and claim that anti-Muslim hate groups once again tripled. And then it can do the same thing again the year after that.

That way the Southern Poverty Law Center can keep manufacturing an imaginary Islamophobia crisis.

Also added to the list is Altra Firearms: a gun store that ran an ad declaring that it wouldn’t sell firearms to Clinton supporters or Muslims. Like Casa D’Ice, this is another case of the SPLC demonstrating that it has no idea what distinguishes a store whose owner says politically incorrect things from a “group”.

The list has added Bosch Fawstin: an artist who was the target of the first ISIS terror attack in America during the assault on the Draw Mohammed cartoon contest. The SPLC announced that it was adding the Eisner nominated artist to its list of hate groups after he survived the attack.

The SPLC’s actions were obscene.

After the attack, Heidi Beirich, in charge of adding targets to the SPLC’s hate map, announced that she would be adding Bosch to the list because the Center now knows his location. Indeed the SPLC makes a point of highlighting the locations of likely terrorist targets. And the Southern Poverty Law Center’s map of hate has been used by terrorists before.

Floyd Lee Corkins opened fire at the headquarters of the Family Research Council. The conservative Christian organization had been targeted by Corkins because of its appearance on the SPLC’s list.

"Southern Poverty Law lists anti-gay groups. I found them online,” Corkins later confessed to the FBI.

When Leo Johnson, the building’s African-American manager, attempted to stop Corkins, the SPLC shooter told Johnson that he didn’t like his politics and opened fire. The SPLC gunman had planned to kill everyone in the office, but Johnson’s heroic actions saved their lives. The African-American building manager was forced to undergo painful surgeries because of the Southern Poverty Law Center’s hate list.

Despite its role in the terror attack, the SPLC continues to target the Family Research Council.

None of the so-called “Anti-Muslim hate groups” listed by the SPLC have shot anyone. The SPLC has.

Bosch Fawstin is a courageous activist. He’s also an individual. As am I. And the SPLC also has me up as a hate group. Other individual bloggers on the list include Atlas Shrugs, Refugee Resettlement Watch, Bare Naked Islam and Citizen Warrior.

6 of the SPLC’s “hate groups” are actually individuals. It’s understandable that the Southern Poverty Law Center is vague on the definition of hate. But you would think that it could figure out the definition of “group.”

No such luck.

The SPLC lists the David Horowitz Freedom Center as a hate group. But then again it also lists the American College of Pediatricians and the Jewish Political Action Committee as hate groups.

It doesn’t take much to be listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

You don’t need to be a group to be listed by the SPLC as a hate group. You don’t even need to have a pulse. Inanimate plastic signs can be listed too.

The rest of the SPLC’s “increase” is padded out with assorted community groups opposed to refugee resettlement, such as Treasure Valley Refugee Watch, and any Christian ministry it doesn’t like.

But there is one barrier to being listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

No amount of overt anti-Semitism from CAIR’s Nihad Awad would ever get the Islamist hate group listed as a hate group. Even CAIR’s flirtation with Neo-Nazis and Holocaust deniers can’t get it on the hate map. The SPLC collaborated with the Muslim Public Affairs Council despite its anti-Semitism.

Instead the SPLC lists counterterrorism organizations such as the Investigative Project on Terrorism, the Clarion Project and the David Horowitz Freedom Center which point out their terror ties as hate groups.

The Southern Poverty Law Center is greedy, cynical and dishonest. Its latest ploy to gain headlines by inflating a group it had formerly listed as 1 organization into 45 by listing each chapter separately is the sort of behavior you expect from a lazy college student, not one of the wealthiest organizations in the country. And yet no one in the media will call out the SPLC for its greed, its bigotry and its lies.

The SPLC climbs into bed with extremists and terrorists and it smears counterterrorism organizations. It helps terrorists target their critics. And it solicits money through shameless lies.

It’s easy to indict the SPLC. But every indictment of the SPLC is also an indictment of a Fake News media that repeats its absurd lies without ever checking its facts.

When the media reports that there was a huge rise in anti-Muslim groups because the Southern Poverty Law Center turned 1 group into 45, it proves that it really is in the Fake News business.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Are We Refugeed Out Yet?

There are more Iraqis living in the United States than there are in some major cities in Iraq. 156,000 Iraqi refugees have entered this country in just the last decade. 30,000 of those have ended up in California.

In Obama’s first year in office, the United States resettled three-quarters of Iraqi refugees.

71% of Iraqi refugees are receiving cash assistance. 82% are on Medicaid and 87% are on food stamps. Compare those atrocious numbers to only 17% of Cubans on cash assistance and 16% on Medicaid.

It should be obvious why Obama shut the door on Cuban refugees while holding it wide open for Syrian Muslims (but closing it tightly on Syrian Christians), Iraqis and Somalis (77.4% food stamp use).

President Trump’s migration pause was met with lectures about how much immigrants contribute to the economy. But the immigrants that the left likes are a drain. If the left finds immigrants who actually contribute to the economy, it fights tooth and nail to keep them out of the country. Notable Iraqi refugees include Waad Ramadan Alwan and Mohanad Shareef Hammadi.

Alwan and Hammadi were thoroughly vetted before they were resettled in Nevada and Kentucky. The only omission in their thorough vetting was an unfortunate failure to note that the refugees were terrorists who had spent years trying to kill American soldiers in Iraq.

Alwan had boasted that of how he had “f___d up” Hummers using IEDs and admitted to having taken part in an attack that killed Americans. He had even left his fingerprints on an IED in Iraq. But the thorough vetting had failed to turn that up.

Alwan and Hammadi tried to send grenade launchers, plastic explosives, missiles and machine guns to the branch of Al Qaeda that would become ISIS. Meanwhile the Al Qaeda in Iraq plotter had quit his job and was living in public housing and collecting public assistance. Like so many other “refugees”.

And law enforcement was soon on the trail of dozens of terrorists who had arrived here as refugees.

The media has had a field day mocking Kellyanne Conway for referencing the fact that this Iraqi refugee terror plot resulted in a six month Iraqi immigration pause under Obama. No “Bowling Green Massacre” took place because the FBI was on to the two terrorists. Hammadi had been caught on tape discussing a domestic terror attack where “many things should take place and it should be huge.”

Mocking Conway for misspeaking helpfully distracts attention from the massacre that nearly was.

And Alwan and Hammadi were far from the last Iraqi refugee terrorists.

Omar Faraj Saeed Al Hardan came here as a refugee. When the FBI searched his Houston apartment, agents found an ISIS flag. Hardan had been planning to leave bombs in the trash cans of two Houston malls. He had also been contemplating an attack on the Grand Prairie military base in Texas.

Hardan had been chatting with Aws Mohammed Younis Al-Jayab, another Iraqi refugee, over in California. Al-Jayab had come as a refugee through Syria, then began plotting to join a terrorist group on his first month here. He headed back to spend some time fighting with Islamic terrorists who later were linked to ISIS. Two of his brothers and a cousin were also arrested for smuggling stolen cell phones.

Al-Hamzah Mohammad Jawad, an Iraqi refugee from Michigan, was arrested while trying to join
ISIS. Abdullatif Ali Aldosary set off a bomb outside a Social Security office in Arizona. The authorities found plenty of bombmaking materials in his home. He was also accused of a murder that had taken place a few days before the bombing and had previously been sent to jail for harassment. His case had been put on hold for “terrorism-related grounds of inadmissibility”, but he still couldn’t be deported.

And then there are the Special Immigrant Visas for Iraqi nationals who provided services to American forces. During the recent controversy, they have been depicted as heroes who helped us fight terrorism.

The reality is a lot more complicated.

Bilal Abood was a translator who came here on an SIV visa. He even briefly joined the army. On the surface he was exactly the sort of refugee that the media likes to depict as the ideal immigrant.

But Abood was also a member of ISIS. America was the “enemy of Allah”, he insisted.

Even when the Iraqi SIVs weren’t joining ISIS, they were doing other terrible things. Jasim Mohammed Hasin Ramadon and Ali Mohammed Hasan Al Juboori had come to this country with SIV visas.

Ramadon had even been dubbed a hero.

Then Ramadon, Juboori and three other Iraqi refugees brutally assaulted a 53-year-old Colorado Springs woman. When the police arrived at the scene of the Iraqi refugee sexual assault, they found blood splattered on the walls.

The Iraqi refugee rapists lured in their victim by complaining about how hard it was living in America and being called terrorists. The night nurse took pity on them because they reminded her of her son.

By the time the Iraqi refugees were done, she had been violated and left near death.

Ahmed Bahjat came here as a refugee from Iraq. He tried to leave by taking a plane to Canada after he “viciously sexually assaulted” a woman in Connecticut. Salam Al Haideri also came here as a refugee. He raped a 4’11 teenager behind a “I Love NY” pizza place dumpster while slamming her head into the ground. The Iraqi refugee's teenage 96-pound victim was left with broken ribs and a fractured nose.

Al Haideri was the third refugee to be convicted of a sex crime in the area.

Walid Nehma, another Iraqi refugee, also assaulted a woman in Albany County. After taking photos of women in local bars, he followed her, hit her in the face, tore off her clothes and tried to rape her.

Khalid Fathey had also received asylum after working with American authorities in Iraq. The Iraqi
refugee molested a little girl and warned her not to tell anyone. He fled trial by taking a flight to Dubai.

Kassim Alhimidi, an Iraqi refugee, murdered his wife in California and tried to blame it on American "Islamophobes." Wisam Fadhil, an Iraqi refugee, stabbed his wife to death in Kentucky while their 8-year-old child slept in the room. He had previously assaulted a man at a gym. Do we need more of this?

Iraq is a failed state. Before we intervened, it was held together by torture, terror and genocide. Now the only things holding it together are torture, terror and genocide. We should take Christian refugees fleeing the Muslim conflicts in that country, but we should not import its Islamic culture of violence.

America has done far more than its share. We have opened our doors to Iraqi refugees. And in return, the people of this land were exposed to terror and horrific refugee crimes. Enough is enough.

There is a very rational solution to our immigration problem. Instead of taking in the refugees most likely to collect welfare or plant a bomb in a shopping mall, we should take those immigrants most likely to contribute to our economy and least likely to behead us while screaming, “Allah Akbar.”

Don’t call it a ban. Call it common sense immigration reform. Because that is exactly what it is.

We have the statistics. We know what works. All we need to do is start putting America first.