CONTENTS: Cornyn-Hagel; Klein-Hagel; Hanson – Tokenism; hanson – CA twilight; Sunstein-2nd Bill; Menendez hookers; TN to ban diversity; Philly school closing, Charter scores drop; Corbin’s gender gap; IQ & immigration; Malkin chumps; expedite 11 million; Arrest #s up; McCarthy- Rubio’s fantasy; Gomez – PointxPoint; No border security; US to Africa again; BenghaziGate; Sowell – shout louder; Boehm Pension reform; Internet taxes; Spencer/Kerry; Trust for the Brothers; Announcements
Experiments in federalism – Illinois is in the most desperate straits, even more so than California. Its neighbor, Indiana, is the best off. Charles Murray
“Lose Latinos, and you’ll lose elections. . .” John McCain. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/01/28/bipartisan-plan-focuses-on-illegal-immigrants/1872827/
Not true . . .
NO TO CHUCK: http://www.notochuck.com/
Thx Bill Bennett. . .
John Cornyn, NRO: The Case against Hagel
“Why the former Nebraska senator is the wrong choice for the Pentagon
“Whether or not Chuck Hagel is confirmed as our next defense secretary, his nomination has already done serious damage to U.S. credibility on Iran, thereby emboldening the most dangerous regime in the Middle East. To limit the damage, President Obama should choose someone else to lead the Pentagon.
“After all, the former Nebraska senator is the same person who has consistently opposed sanctions against Iran. He is the same person who wanted Washington to support Iranian membership in the World Trade Organization. The same person who voted against designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist group (at a time when the IRGC was orchestrating the murder of U.S. troops in Iraq). The same person who refused to sign a letter asking the European Union to label Hezbollah (an Iranian proxy) a terror group. The same person who urged President Bush to offer Iran “direct, unconditional, and comprehensive talks.” The same person who called for establishing a U.S. diplomatic mission in Tehran. The same person who dismissed “a military strike against Iran” as “not a viable, feasible, responsible option.” The same person who wrote that a nuclear Iran might be tolerable because “sovereign nation-states possessing nuclear weapons capability (as opposed to stateless terrorist groups) will often respond with some degree of responsible, or at least sane, behavior. . . “
Aaron Klein, KleinOnLine: “Hagel ‘will be used to push far-left agenda’ Senator: Obama seeks bipartisan face for policies ‘destroying America’”
“President Obama will use Chuck Hagel’s Republican affiliation to put a bipartisan face on a “far left” military agenda, including policies that are “destroying America,” charged Sen. Jim Inhofe in a radio interview.
“Inhofe, the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, went on WABC Radio’s “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio” to explain his opposition to Obama’s nomination of Hagel to the defense secretary post.
“‘There is nothing to inhibit him (Obama) from a far left agenda that is the wrong agenda certainly in the Middle East,’ stated Inhofe. ‘Now I think that’s one reason that he would want to have Chuck Hagel.’”
Victor Davis Hanson, NRO: The Age of Tokenism”
“It is a depressing characteristic of government today to loudly enact legislation and impose regulations of little utility, while neglecting to address the root causes of truly serious problems. We do not know to what degree a Sandy Hook or a Columbine is caused by improperly treated mental illness, violent video games, Hollywood’s saturation of the popular culture with graphic mayhem — or access, by hook or by crook, to semi-automatic “assault” rifles. But we do know that the latter play almost no role in Chicago’s horrific annual tally of 500 murders — and account for less than 1 percent of the gun-related deaths in the United States each year. Yet we also confess that taking on Hollywood, the video-game industry, or the mental-health establishment would be far more acrimonious and politically risky than demonizing the National Rifle Association. . .”
Victor Davis Hanson, PJM: “California at Twilight”
“The old blue/red war for California is over. Conservatives lost. Liberals won — by a combination of flooding the state with government-supplied stuff, and welcoming millions in while showing the exit to others. The only mystery is how Carthaginian will be the victor’s peace, e.g., how high will taxes go, how many will leave, how happy will the majority be at their departure?
“The state of Pat Brown, Ronald Reagan, Pete Wilson, and George Deukmejian is long dead due to the most radical demographic shifts of any one state in recent American history — as far away as Cicero was to Nero. One minor, but telling example: Salinas, in Monterey County where the murder rate is the highest in the state, just — at least I think the news story is not a prank — named its new middle school after Tiburcio Vasquez.
“A convicted murderer.
“He was the legendary 19th-century robber and murderer who was hanged for his crimes. But who is to say that Vasquez is a killer, and Henry Huntington a visionary?
“We keep trying to understand the enigma of California, mostly why it still breathes for a while longer, given the efforts to destroy the sources of its success. Let’s try to navigate through its sociology and politics to grasp why something that should not survive is surviving quite well — at least in some places.
The New Demography
“California has changed not due to race but due to culture, most prominently because the recent generation of immigrants from Latin America did not — as in the past, for the most part — come legally in manageable numbers and integrate under the host’s assimilationist paradigm. Instead, in the last three decades huge arrivals of illegal aliens from Mexico and Latin America saw Democrats as the party of multiculturalism, separatism, entitlements, open borders, non-enforcement of immigration laws, and eventually plentiful state employment.
“Given the numbers, the multicultural paradigm of the salad bowl that focused on ‘diversity’ rather than unity, and the massive new government assistance, how could the old American tonic of assimilation, intermarriage, and integration keep up with the new influxes? It could not.
“Finally, we live in an era of untruth and Orwellian censorship. It is absolutely taboo to write about the above, or to talk about the ever more weird artifacts of illegal immigration — the war now on black families in demographically changing areas of Los Angeles, the statistics behind DUI arrests, or the burgeoning profile of Medi-Cal recipients. . .”
Cass Sunstein, Bloomberg: Obama, FDR, & the Second Bill of Rights
“Roosevelt insisted that “these economic truths have become accepted as self-evident. We have accepted, so to speak, a second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all regardless of station, race or creed.”
“Then he listed them:
– The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation.
– The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation.
– The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living.
– The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad.
– The right of every family to a decent home.
– The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health.
– The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident and unemployment.
– The right to a good education.
“All of these rights,” Roosevelt said, “spell security.”
LEADS . . .
David Martosko, Daily Caller: “FBI raids Florida eye clinic of donor linked to Sen. Bob Menendez’s prostitution scandal”
“Melgen, 58, is believed to have flown Menendez in his private jet to the Dominican Republic on several occasions for alcohol-fueled sex parties featuring prostitutes.
“According to the Miami Herald, records obtained from the Palm Beach County recorder show Melgen also “has an outstanding IRS lien of $11.1 million for taxes owed from 2006 to 2009.”
“It’s unknown whether the FBI is investigating his tax delinquency, his association with Sen. Menendez, or both. . .”
Eric Owens, Daily Caller: “Tennessee state senator’s bill would ban diversity programs on college campuses”
“. . .Republican Jim Summerville calls his slate of legislation the “Civil Rights Initiative of 2013,” reports Knoxville NBC affiliate WBIR-TV. In addition to forbidding diversity preference programs, the proposal would prohibit the state from keeping any statistics based on race, gender or ethnicity, or using those criteria for hiring, except as mandated by federal law.
“‘It’s a little demeaning, I think, to classify people in those categories,’ Summerville told WBIR. “They might wonder ‘Am I here because I’m any good or am I here to fill a quota?’ So I think it’s time to let this go. . . ”
Kristin Graham, Philly.com: “City school closings target vulnerable students, critics say”
“Ramping up their fight against 37 planned public school closings, a coalition including the city teachers’ union, politicians, a pastor, and the head of the local NAACP chapter said Monday that the Philadelphia School District was targeting the city’s most vulnerable students.
“Poor students, African American and Latino students, and students with disabilities would all be disproportionately affected by the large-scale closings, according to an analysis completed by the Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools (PCAPS).
The district is already the subject of a federal civil rights investigation into the racial patterns of its 2012 school closings, spurred by a complaint by the activist group Action United.
“The patterns are the same with this year’s proposed closings, which will be decided upon by the School Reform Commission (SRC) on March 7, PCAPS said at a news conference at Bright Hope Baptist Church in North Philadelphia. . .”
Marsha Woodall, Philly.com. “With new rules, Pa. charter school performance plummets”
“The percentage of Pennsylvania charter schools that met academic benchmarks plummeted after the state Department of Education was forced to recalculate the performance rates.
“Under a new and controversial method the department used last fall, 49 percent of 156 charter schools met benchmarks based on student tests scores in 2011-12.
The rate dropped to 28 percent after the department released a recalculation this week. In Philadelphia, the percentage of the 80 charter schools that met the standards declined from 54 percent to 29 percent.
“None of the 12 cyber charter schools that provide online in-home instruction to students statewide met the benchmarks. Previously, one met the standard.
“The state sets the benchmarks to determine if a school has made ‘adequate yearly progress’ (AYP) under the federal No Child Left Behind law. Fifty percent of district-run schools across the state met the criteria.
“The academic performance of charter schools is a central component in the debate over education funding, which pits school districts against publicly funded charters. . .”
Keegan Gibson, PoliticsPA: “Quinnipiac Poll: Gender Gap Sinks Corbett Numbers”
“By a 30 point margin, Pennsylvania’s women voters say Tom Corbett does not deserve a second term in the Governor’s mansion. The massive gender gap is mirrored in his job approval numbers, too.
That’s according to the latest poll from the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
Overall 51% of respondents said he does not deserve to be re-elected compared to 31% who said he does. Men went against him by 10 points, 48% to 38%, while women oppose a second Corbett term by 30 points 54% to 24% (total gender gap: 20 points).
Fowler & Campoy, WSJ: “Boy Scouts Rethink Gay Ban”
“Proposed Change Comes After Petition Drives and Pressure by Corporate Backers
“The Scouts said Monday it was considering a new policy that would let local scouting groups determine their own policies about allowing participation by openly gay people, according to their own “mission, principles, or religious beliefs.” The change will be discussed next week by the organization’s national board, a Scouts spokesman said. . .”
James Brody: IQ & Immigration
Lynn & Vanhannen (2006) report that the average IQ in the United States is 98; in Mexico it is 88. The difference is not a matter of education. I suggest that brighter immigrants are more apt to complete forms, obey laws, and wait in line. Admitting anyone who hikes across the line tips our preference towards impulsive rule-breakers, fills our jails and ERs, and raises our entitlement costs.
Brimelow, Peter (1995) Alien Nation: Common Sense about America’s Immigration Disaster. NY: Random House.
Lynn, Richard & Tatu Vanhanen (2006) IQ and Global Inequality. Augusta, GA: Washington Summit.
Michelle Malkin, NRO: “Law-Abiders under the Bus
“Standing in line? You’re a chump!
“President Obama and the bipartisan Gang of Eight in Washington who want to create a ‘pathway to citizenship’ for millions of illegal aliens have sent a message loud and clear to those who follow the rules: You’re chumps!
“Have you patiently waited for months and years for the State Department and Department of Homeland Security to slog through your application? You’re chumps!
Have you paid thousands of dollars in travel, legal, and medical fees to abide by the thicket of entry, employment, health, and processing regulations? You’re chumps!
“Have you studied for your naturalization test, taken the oath of allegiance to heart, embraced our time-tested principle of the rule of law, and demonstrated that you will be a financially independent, productive citizen? You’re chumps! . . .”
Katie Pavlich, Town Hall: “Obama’s Immigration Plan – Expedite 11 Million Illegal Immigrants to Citizenship”
“Although Obama focused on further enforcement as a top priority for reform, he stressed the need to expedite 11 million illegal immigrants away from the shadows and into American society as citizens, a position bound to put the country into another post-1986 amnesty situation.
“Obama wants to study the fine print of legislation once it is written, but administration officials were quick to say the president objects to linking an earned pathway to citizenship to enforcement or border security triggers, a contingency concept included in the bipartisan “principles” outlined Monday by pro-reform senators who have been dubbed the “immigration eight.” Immigration enforcement goals have already been met by the administration, the officials said, and any new triggers or thresholds set by law would create unnecessary obstacles to those seeking legal status.
“Obama warned if Congress fails to enact its own immigration reform, he’ll send up his own bill “and insist they vote on it right away,” while cautioning against the emotion of ongoing debate and an “us vs. them” mentality.
“‘The closer we get, the more emotional this debate is going to become,’ Obama said.
Stephen Dinan, Washington Times: “Arrest numbers signal 9 percent jump in illegal immigration in 2012”
“Even as President Obama travels to Las Vegas Tuesday to call for legalizing illegal immigrants, the latest numbers from the U.S. Border Patrol suggest that the flow across the nation’s southwest border jumped by 9 percent up last year.
“The Border Patrol made 356,873 arrests along the U.S.-Mexico border in fiscal year 2012, up from 327,577 in 2011, according to figures obtained by the Associated Press and confirmed by The Washington Times. Border Patrol officials estimate that apprehensions are a good proxy for illegal crossings, so when the numbers go up, it means that the flow of illegal immigrants is going up as well. . .”
Andrew McCarthy, PJM: “ Senator Rubio’s Immigration Enforcement Fantasy”
“The silly season is upon us again, which is to say: Washington finds itself in yet another debate over “comprehensive immigration reform.”
“The core silliness could be heard in the arguments of Marco Rubio, one of four Republicans in the Senate “Gang of Eight” urging a deal that purports to ensure real immigration enforcement in exchange for legalization of status and an ultimate “path to citizenship” for millions of illegal immigrants. Earlier this afternoon, Sen. Rubio was interviewed by Rush Limbaugh.
“Sen. Rubio admirably insisted, “We need border security. We need workplace enforcement. We need a visa tracking system.” But, as Rush pointed out, President Obama is outlining his own vision of immigration reform in Las Vegas today, and it promises to diverge in a fundamental way from the Gang of Eight proposal: The president has no interest in immigration enforcement. He wants only the legalization goodies for current illegals and the incentives they’ll inevitably create for more illegal immigration. He is not interested in the protections for the American people that Sen. Rubio touts.
“Sen. Rubio confidently responded that if the president makes such a pitch, he will have a huge problem with his own party — in particular, with Sen. Chuck Schumer and the other Gang of Eight Democrats who’ve supposedly committed their party to meaningful enforcement measures. This contention is absurd. It suggests that Sen. Rubio either does not understand how the federal government works (highly unlikely for a man of Rubio’s obvious intelligence), or is making a monumental miscalculation — elevating over the certain-to-be-damaging consequences of his proposal the futile hope that Republicans will win lasting accolades from the pro-illegal immigration Obamedia. . .”
Alan Gomez, USA Today: “Bipartisan immigration plan point by point”
“. . . if previous immigration fights — including one as recent as 2007 — are any indication, the ambitious plan put forth by Democratic and Republican senators will have to clear some daunting hurdles. Namely, the word “amnesty.”
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., was a key player in pushing the 2007 immigration plan backed by President Bush. Indeed, that plan had bipartisan support but failed to gain traction and eventually fell apart.
The difference this time?
“‘Elections. Elections,’ McCain said Monday. ‘The Republican Party is losing the support of Hispanic citizens.’
“Obama’s Election Day defeat of Mitt Romney led to some soul-searching among the GOP, as Hispanics backed Obama 71%-27% over Romney, according to exit poll surveys. Hispanics are the fastest growing part of the electorate, and the largest minority group in the USA, so the math became very clear for Republicans: Lose Latinos, and you’ll lose elections. . .”
Joel Pollak, Big Govt: “Obama – No Border Security before Path to Citizenship”
“President Barack Obama is set to reject the key compromise at the heart of a bipartisan deal on immigration reform announced by eight Senators yesterday. The president, who will deliver an address later today in Las Vegas, NV outlining his own immigration ideas, is reported to oppose linking a “path to citizenship” for illegal immigrants, a Democrat demand, to stronger law enforcement and better border security, a Republican demand.
“The president will apparently argue that the administration has met reasonable goals on enforcing current immigration legislation, and that additional security will merely create new obstacles to legalizing the roughly 12 million illegal immigrants thought to be living in the United States. The federal government accelerated deportations in the first years of the Obama presidency, and sent new personnel to patrol the southwestern border.
“However, starting last year, the Obama administration declined to enforce existing law regarding the so-called “Dreamers”–immigrants brought illegally to the U.S. as children. The election-year move drew praise from Hispanic groups but preempted congressional legislation, and brought criticism from proponents of immigration reform, including Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), who objected to the president’s clear circumvention of Congress. . .”
From Matt Drudge (1/29/13)
Entous & Gorman, WSJ: “U.S. to Expand Role in Africa”
“Military Pact With Niger Brings American Forces Closer to Conflict in Mali
“The U.S. and France are moving to create an intelligence hub in Niger that could include a base, near Mali’s border, for American drones that could monitor al Qaeda-linked militants in Mali’s vast desert north, U.S. officials said.
“The Obama administration has agreed to provide air tankers to refuel French warplanes targeting rebels in Mali, sharply expanding the level of U.S. involvement in the campaign. WSJ Pentagon Correspondent Adam Entous reports. Photo: Getty Images.
“The moves show the extent to which the U.S. and France are girding for what could be an open-ended campaign against the militants in North and West Africa.
“U.S. and French officials said they see Niger as a logical hub for intelligence-collection operations nearby in Mali, where France has deployed warplanes and ground troops to drive Islamist militants from cities and towns they have held for months. . .”
Rick David, Daily Clash: High Crimes from the Obama Administration?
“Doesn’t anybody think that something smells fishy here?
“Certainly, security expert Frank Gaffney did. He was reported in the Washington Times last October, before the election, “GAFFNEY: The real reason behind Benghazigate Was Obama gun-walking arms to jihadists?” The story reported:
“It now appears that Stevens was there — on a particularly risky day, with no security to speak of and despite now copiously documented concerns about his own safety and that of his subordinates — for another priority mission: sending arms recovered from the former regime’s stocks to the “opposition” in Syria. As in Libya, the insurgents are known to include al Qaeda and other Shariah-supremacist groups … We know that Stevens‘ last official act was to hold such a meeting with an unidentified “Turkish diplomat.” Presumably, the conversation involved additional arms shipments to al Qaeda and its allies in Syria.
“So, let’s get this straight. The Obama administration, through Ambassador Stevens, was illegally funneling arms to a declared enemy force. . .”
Thomas Sowell, Town Hall: Shouting Louder
“An old-time trial lawyer once said, ‘When your case is weak, shout louder!’
“Secretary of State Hillary Clinton shouted louder when asked about the Obama administration’s story last fall that the September 11th attack on the U.S. ambassador’s quarters in Benghazi was due to an anti-Islamic video that someone in the United States had put on the Internet, and thereby provoked a protest that escalated into violence.
“She shouted: ‘We had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided they’d go kill some Americans? What difference, at this point, does it make?’
“Students of propaganda may admire the skill with which she misdirected people’s attention. But those of us who are still old-fashioned enough to think that the truth matters cannot applaud her success.
“Let’s go back to square one. . .”
Eric Boehm, PA Independent: “Pension reform will likely target future benefits”
“. . . Monday, Budget Secretary Charles Zogby offered a preview of how the Corbett administration plans to deal with Pennsylvania’s $40 billion unfunded pension debt and rising annual costs. Part of the plan would target future benefits of current employees while keeping previously earned benefits and benefits for retirees in place, Zogby said during an appearance at the Pennsylvania Press Club luncheon.
Christopher Bedford, Daily Caller: “How politicians are planning the return of taxation without representation”
“What the schemers want to do is tax transactions that take place on the Internet. Basically, states want to tax Internet imports. So if we want to sell something on eBay to a buyer in Florida, Florida wants to tax us, even though we have no property, physical presence or political representation in Florida. And if we tell Florida to take a hike, we have to leave the comforts of home and fight that in court in Florida.
“All of this, of course, is in the interest of ‘fairness.’“
Kerry . . .
Cornyn, Cruz, Inhofe – the lonely opposition.
Robert Spencer, PJM: “Who is John Kerry trying to kid?”
“Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper reported last Thursday, no doubt with some relief, that during his confirmation hearing for his nomination as secretary of State, Senator John Kerry declared that he opposed cutting American aid to Pakistan, which he saw as a ‘dramatic, draconian and sledge-hammer’ measure. Senator Kerry also said that Pakistan’s role in leading the United States to Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad had not been sufficiently appreciated.”
“Who is Kerry kidding? The Pakistani government didn’t help the U.S. find bin Laden. In fact, they were enraged that they had not been filled in on the details of the hunt, which was a wise decision in light of the jihadist ties of the ISI, the Pakistani spy service.
“How enraged were they? . . .”
CSM: Egypt’s protests reveal deficit of trust in Muslim Brotherhood
Thx Hillary . . .
“Open defiance of Egypt’s president in street protests shows how much the Muslim Brotherhood needs to leave Islam outside the door of democracy.
“Five days of protests in Egypt, with dozens of people killed and entire cities in turmoil, have revealed a whopping deficit of public trust in the Muslim Brotherhood, the Islamic group that dominates the leadership of this young democracy of the Arab Spring.
“In cities like Port Said, the protesters have displayed an open defiance of President Mohamed Morsi’s orders on a curfew and state of emergency. Egypt’s Army chief warns of the state collapsing. And indeed, many Egyptians now talk of splitting up the Arab world’s most populous state.
“The triggers for this upheaval were the second anniversary of the fall of Hosni Mubarak and a court sentencing 21 people for the deaths of 74 people after a soccer match last year. But below the surface of this dissent lies a deeper struggle. It is one trying to define the source of legitimacy for Egypt’s new leaders, or the kind of sentiment that cements trust between a government and its people. . .