Thursday, December 30

U.S. fiscal problem explained in one minute.

Best concise description of one of our most serious problems, from commenter Ombudsman at Ace of Spades:
Leftists are spoiled brats. "You say the social welfare state is unsustainable? I don't care. I want mine. Gimme."

"You say years of unemployment benefits will saddle future generations with endless, nation-destroying debt? I don't care--I want mine. Gimme."

"You say society can't afford for me to retire at age 50 and live on a government pension til' I'm 85? I don't care--I want to. Gimme."
Leftists--taking "clueless" to whole new levels.

WaPo op-ed writer admires Taliban, opposes ROTC

Conservatives believe the Left hates America and the U.S. military.

The Left--arguably stupid but not crazy--duck and dodge and try like hell to avoid directly answering the question, but then some crapweasel leftist like this one comes along and provides the proof.

This weasel (Colman McCarthy) wrote an op-ed in the WaPo in which he said he admired those who join the Taliban. He also wrote that he has opposed ROTC since his college days in the 1960's.

But the Left ain't anti-American and anti-military. Not at all. They're really for America--just for a far different America than the one we live in. And anti-military? Don't be silly--they just support all military forces equally.

Leftists are far too sophisticated to play favorites.

It's almost hard to believe the WaPo publishes stuff like this. So click the link, then the link in that article, and see for yourself. The author, by the way,
is a former Post columnist who directs the Center for Teaching Peace in Washington and teaches courses on nonviolence, so his loathing of the military isn't surprising.

“The Nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools.” —Thucydides (460BC–395BC)
(h/t to commenter Roopod6 at Zip's)

"Professional Journalist" mag calls for ending use of "illegal alien"

This is one of those reports that seems so outrageous that one searches for confirmation.

Seems Megyn Kelly of Fox News found an article in the on-line version of the journal of the Society of Professional Journalists, in which the author wrote that journalists of all stripes should stop using the phrases "illegal alien" and "illegal immigrant," and instead substitute "undocumented worker" or similar.

The reasoning is fascinating: First, the author claims the "illegal" part of the phrase offends hispanics. (He doesn't say whether legal hispanic immigrants are offended, or just the illegal ones.)

The second rationale is equally odd: "Simply put, only a judge, not a journalist, can say that someone is an illegal."

Well sure, if we were in court and trying to reach a formal determination on a specific individual I could understand the desire for a judge's input. (And I thought a jury might have some input to this question as well.) But the author's squeamishness at using the phrase in any venue other than a courtroom strikes me as...propaganda.

Sort of like refusing to use the term "Islamic terrorist" in a news story because no judge had made the legal determination yet.

One wonders if the author would even be willing to concede that even in the abstract, either an illegal immigrant or an Islamic terrorist exists.

In any case, seeing as how the first source of the report was "Faux News," and being properly trained by my leftist betters to be skeptical of that source, I clicked through to the original article. Sure enough, here it is.

This kind of "thinking" seems all too common among advocacy journalists.

Islam at work, part 45,834

The Times of India reports that a 12-year-old girl was captured near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. She told police that she and many other girls had been trained as suicide bombers.

She said the group that trained her was headed by her sister-in-law.

Think about those statements for a bit: What kind of cult trains 12-year-old girls to be suicide bombers?

Or for that matter, what kind of demented fanatics would use kids of either sex as suicide bombers?

Folks, this is what we're up against. The problem isn't this or that explosive device being smuggled into some venue, but Islamic fanatics, period.

If there were a magic device that would somehow prevent explosives from exploding, does anyone think that would put an end to murders by Islamic fanatics?

The problem is the Islamic doctrine demanding that everyone in the world either submit or convert. All else is simply detail.

If this problem is ever to be solved, either the extremists must be re-educated to abandon violence, or else we must make pushing violence and training agents so totally fatal that the pool of recruits will dry up.

Keep in mind that the top guys aren't the ones volunteering to blow themselves up. Instead they recruit naive teenagers to do that, while they live to spread the cancer. That's the part of the chain to disrupt.

Eliminate the trainers and organizers, and the teens and pre-teens won't be led to suicide.

Wednesday, December 29

Muslim population in UK up 74% in nine years.

The population of Muslims in the U.K. is up 74%... in just the last nine years.

Let me repeat that, because the number is so far "off the charts" that one is certain it must be a typo: A 74% increase in nine years. The link has the raw numbers that verify the percentage.

For comparison, the population of the U.S. is increasing by only a fraction of a percent per year.

Some African nations experienced annual population growth of 4 or 5 percent, and the result was catastrophic in terms of lawlessness and social upheaval.

But of course you say that the huge increase was in the U.K., and couldn't happen here.

Keep whistling.

Tuesday, December 28

Two views of what power the Constitution gives the central gov't

Obamacare is just the latest and most egregious effort to expand government power over the citizenry. As passed by a Dem-controlled congress, it would force individuals to buy a private product (health insurance) sold--at least for now--by for-profit companies.

Before the law passed, some conservatives asked their reps what article in the Constitution gave the government the power to require this. Some congresscritters simply dodged the question--the most infamous being "I don't have any concerns about that." Others at least took a stab at trying to grab a fig leaf to cover the naked power grab and said "The 'general welfare' clause."

Still others said "the commerce clause."

The question illuminates a fundamental difference between the way the Founders interpreted the powers they gave the central government, and what has actually happened since. It's a very crucial debate--one you'd be well advised to ensure your kids know about.

The first clause in Article 1 Section 8--usually termed the General Welfare clause--is:
The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;
(The section goes on to list another 17 specific powers delegated to congress.)

Liberals claim this clause permits the federal government to do absolutely anything, as long as the things contemplated "provide for the general welfare" of the citizenry.

Conservatives--and the writings of the Founders--emphatically reject this view. Instead they claim that the clause gives congress the power to lay and collect taxes only to accomplish those things which the rest of the Constitution authorizes it to do.

Moreover, for the Liberal view of this clause to prevail, Liberals must implicitly contend that this unlimited power was a) present from the outset, and b) known to be present by the signers.

These requirements arise from the principle that if we're trying to reach an agreement but never did actually agree on the meaning of some crucial term ("...depends on what the meaning of 'is' is.."), then there is no agreement, even if we signed a paper saying there is.

In this case, if the signers believed they had negotiated--and reached agreement--that the government only had certain very specific, limited, "enumerated" powers, a later party can't legally prevail in claiming that the document actually confers unlimited powers without voiding the agreement.

And it's virtually impossible to defend the two implied requirements above because a wealth of contemporaneous writing exists among the Founders/signers stating that virtually all understood they were agreeing to limit the power of the central government to the specific powers mentioned in the document.

Obviously the difference between the liberal and conservative interpretations of this clause is huge. In one the federal government has limited power, while in the other it's unlimited.

Wiki --in no way a conservative supporter--summarizes the controversy as follows (edited):

The two primary authors of the The Federalist essays had conflicting interpretations:
  • James Madison believed in that spending must be tied to one of the other specifically enumerated powers, such as regulating interstate or foreign commerce, or providing for the military. He believed the General Welfare Clause is not a specific grant of power, but a statement of purpose qualifying the power to tax.
  • After the Constitution was ratified, Alexander Hamilton argued that the power to tax and spend "for the general welfare" was a separate enumerated power, as long as the spending was general in nature and did not favor one state or region of the country.
In 1936 the Supreme Court ruled against the interpretation held by Madison and Jefferson, holding that the power to tax and spend was an independent power (United States v. Butler). In so holding, the court implicitly found that all the parties to the signing of the Constitution agreed that this was the outcome they bargained for--which is clearly not the case.

The Court did find that this newly conferred power to tax and spend could only be exercised for matters affecting the national welfare. But obviously this is an illusory limitation, since any good outcome can be rationalized to "affect" the national welfare. Indeed, the decision was so myopic that a law affect the national welfare in a way all agree was deleterious would still pass this illusory "limitation."

More recently in South Dakota v. Dole the court held that the general welfare clause gives congress the power to bribe the states into adopting national standards by threatening to withhold federal funds if they refuse.

The same pattern observed in the gradual evolution of the "general welfare" clause is also apparent in the court's treatment of the Commerce clause. This clause (Article I, Section 8, clause 3) says that congress shall have power "To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States...."

This seems quite innocuous--if any entity is to regulate commerce between the states, seems like a natural function of the central government.

When the Constitution was signed one never would have guessed how congress and the courts would use this innocuous clause to expand their power to a degree unimaginable by the founders.

A typical example is Wickard v. Filburn (1942). To increase wheat prices during the Depression the government had decreed that farmers could only produce a fixed amount of wheat per acre. Farmer Roscoe Filburn grew wheat, not for sale in the market but simply to feed his own chickens. The amount of wheat he produced was more than the number of bushels allowed by the gubment, so the gubment ordered Filburn to destroy his wheat and pay a fine.

The courts upheld this order, even though the record is undisputed that all wheat grown by Filburn was for his own use; that he never sold or tried to sell it, and had no intention of doing so.

The Supreme Court held that Filburn's wheat production reduced the amount of wheat he would otherwise have had to buy on the open market to feed his chickens. It followed--to a majority of the justices on the court, at least-- that Filburn's production of wheat--even for his own consumption--affected interstate commerce, and thus the federal government had a constitutional right to regulate it under the Commerce clause.

As many critics have noted, if such reasoning is allowed then every activity can eventually be said to "affect interstate commerce," and thus by Wickard to fall under federal regulation and control.

It's almost impossible to read this decision without feeling that the court was stretching to reach a politically-desired outcome.

But the whole thrust of the Constitution was that the power of the central government was to be limited to only a handful of specific powers. In fact the tenth amendment reassured the states by specifically providing that
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
You'd think such clear, simple language would be impossible to misinterpret. But apparently determined leftist judges and congresscritters can "misinterpret" anything if doing so will serve their ends.

Also, it's fascinating to see how easily the language of Wickard morphs into summaries that leave the impression that we're actually living in Chavez's Venezuela. Here's an example from the Wiki summary:
Hence...if farmers were allowed to consume their own wheat, it would affect the interstate market in wheat.
Heaven forbid that the government would actually allow farmers to consume food they themselves raised. Why, we must set up a commission to punish this practice!

Which, of course, is exactly what the government did in Wickard.

All three of the debates above--about the General Welfare clause, the Commerce clause and the tenth amendment--illustrate the same point: In each case people determined to advance their own purposes ignored the clear and obvious thrust of the Constitution, in order to give more power to the federal government than the founders clearly intended.

Unfortunately this effect seems to work only in one direction, because The People don't have armies of full-time, government-paid attorneys working non-stop to prevent the government from taking more power.

By huge contrast, congress and the executive branch do have these resources. Thus the only check on the one-way ratchet is the ethics and respect for the Constitution--if any--practiced by these two agencies.

And of course, the total of ethics and Constitutional reverence in both congress and the executive branch is almost zero.

Postscript to an already too long post: It may be that the erroneous placement of a single comma provided the chink into which liberals have since driven the wedge to claim unlimited power under the General Welfare clause. Here it is again:
Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;
The offending comma is after the word "Excises" in the first line. Remember that Hamilton claimed that the power to provide for the general welfare was actually a separate enumerated power, clearly bargained for by the signers. This claim is made possible if you construct the clause as "Congress shall have the power to: 1) Lay and collect taxes...; 2) to pay the debts and provide for...the general welfare; [etc]

If the comma weren't present it would be clear that providing for the general welfare was simply a use for taxes collected by the central government, and thus that the clause was not conferring a separate, "enumerated" power.

But obviously the comma IS present, so the meaning is less clear than it could have been. To resolve the matter of which interpretation was originally intended, we look at the remainder of the section. And there we find that each of the other 17 enumerated powers is on a separate line; that each line ends with a semicolon; and that each line begins with a capitalized T in "To".

To adopt the Liberal (Hamiltonian) view requires that we accept that the signers treated this second alleged power--allegedly granting the government the unlimited power to provide for the general welfare--differently from all the others, by appending it to the power to tax with a comma instead of setting it off in its own line, following a semicolon and with a capital T, as they did with every other power.

Liberals are never called to defend this interpretation. And as far as I'm aware, the matter has never been raised in court.

But for those who have been paying attention, even if there was a clear addendum to the Constitution stating that the General Welfare clause was NOT a separate power, it wouldn't matter--the armies of congresscritters bent on buying votes to assure their re-election would have done what they damn well pleased anyway. And the courts would have turned a blind eye--as they have.

Government subsidies distort (i.e. screw up)...everything.

Economists have known for decades that if you subsidize an activity (i.e. reward it) you get more of it, while if you penalize an activity--and taxation is a form of economic penalty--you get less of it.

You'd think by now everyone on the planet would have a firm grasp on this concept.

It's frustrating that politicians are either unaware of this, or actually want (or are willing to tolerate) perverse results caused by subsidizing things that most people think are...well, stupid.

Example: Like most gubments, Spain's embraced the whole "globull warmening" thing, and their first big supposed fix was to announce that they'd pay anyone who produced electricity from solar or wind source a big premium over the regular going rate.

Care to guess what happened next? Yep, a whole menagerie of con artists--and probably a few well-intentioned but technically naive folks--got into that bidness. And inevitably, a few of them got too greedy: One such producer of ostensibly "solar" electricity was so determined to maximize his take that he began running diesel generators at night to sell more supposedly "solar" electricity!

Can't say I'm surprised. Are you?

But obviously that's Spain, fer cryin' out loud. And I understand Spain is a furrin' country, so they probably do things differently there.

Maybe. Here in the U.S. we find that the average annual salary of stagehands at the Kennedy Center is something like $260,000! Wow! And that's an average.

Long story short: It's Kennedy Center, which is gubmint owned, so no one gives a crap about costs. Second: Unions jumped on that like a duck on a junebug, knowing they could jack wages to the sky and no one would complain.

So, the lesson? Taxpayers have subsidized barely-skilled positions at a gubmint entity, resulting in a) huge wage premiums; and b) lots of jake-legs deciding they wanna get their snout into the gubmint-employees-union pot.

Who could have guessed? Oh, wait...

Monday, December 27

Smart People can solve our problems easily? Wait...

One of my favorite reads is Ace of Spades. Ace made the major points below--I've edited a bit:
Candidates win votes only partly on ideology, and partly on simple competence. Ideology convinces some, but not a majority; to get to the majority, a perception of competence wins over voters who are neutral on the candidate's or party's ideology.

Liberals depend on a facade of competence more than conservatives do, mainly because the media sells this image for them. The media sells voters on the idea that what matters most is not ideas or ideology but just his general competence, intelligence and sound judgment.

The liberal media portrays liberal candidates as brilliant, even-tempered, sophisticated and "nuanced" of thought; all of these are non-ideological attributes which appeal to most voters, whatever one's politics. They scrupulously avoid mentioning the usual liberal platform of higher taxes, more spending, more government power and less freedom.

Meanwhile Republican candidates get the opposite treatment from the media. Every single Republican candidate is portrayed by the media as one or more of the following:

1. Stupid

2. Evil

3. Crazy, or

4. Out-of-touch

...and pretty much you can categorize every Republican office-seeker since Eisenhower (Out of touch) in this way. Nixon: Evil and Crazy; Reagan: Stupid and Crazy and possibly Evil; Bush I: Out of touch; Bush II: Stupid, Crazy, Out of Touch and Evil.

So 53% of U.S. voters went for Obama at least partly because the media had told them how super-duper smart he was. He would bring to the job not tired ideology but brilliant problem-solving abilities. He would just fix things that no conservative could--simply because he was just that good.

Two years after taking office it's apparent to anyone who's awake that Obama doesn't have a clue what he's doing. Far from being the Mr. Fix It, he's Mr. Screw-It-Up-Worse. The slurs the Left threw at Bush-- blundering, incompetent, idiot, chimp -- seem to apply to Obama.

Isn't it odd how simple America's problems were when Democrats were out of power, looking to take over. Democrats would just fix the economy. Snap! Fixed. Just cancel Bush's tax cuts for the rich and it would all be right as rain. We could just bring peace between Israel and the Palestinians, and convince the Iranians and North Koreans to give up the bomb; all we needed was a really smart guy to speak the right words to the leaders of those countries--words the Left claimed Bush was too stupid to know.

We could just get the oceans to stop rising, and just reduce our dependency on foreign oil, and just do this or that.

It was so easy for the 2006-2008 Democrats to explain how they'd work these wonders. All that was needed, they claimed, was to get those idiot Republicans out of office. These problems were easily solved if we just had Smart People (TM) running things. Replace the Backwards Idiots (TM) with the Smart People (TM) and it would all be smooth sailing.

Of course now we see that none of these problems has been solved--mostly because they are decidedly not simple to solve, and only a simpleton cold have claimed otherwise. So now Obama's loyal media supporters are telling us a different story: how difficult all these things are to change and fix.

It remains to be seen whether the public will be fooled again.

Sunday, December 26

Is God to blame for the state of the world?

A certain leftist cartoonist drew a Christmas day strip that implied that the state of the world today should be blamed on God.

I strongly disagree. If humans have free will, how can any rational person ascribe any blame to God for human malice, greed or what have you? But the story got me to thinking about the seemingly huge asymmetry between the way God is regarded by those on the left and right side of our politics.

Seems to me folks on the right think something like this:
  • God is wonderful, and has blessed each of us in ways too numerous to count;
  • We consider it an honor to help carry out His plans, so we try to be more generous, more loving, more supportive, et cetera, every new day;
Seems t' me most folks on the Left think more like this:
  • Either God doesn't exist or else He/She is capricious if not downright cruel;
  • If God did exist, and were actually all-powerful, He/She would never allow [fill in the blank] to happen; since it does happen, it must follow that God doesn't exist;
  • Since there is no God, no one can say for certain what's 'right' and 'wrong;' ergo, anyone can do anything they like, as long as they believe they're not being malicious;
  • There are so many poor people that individuals and private charities can't help them all; so we will solve that by having government force everyone to help the poor, by using tax revenue to fund welfare programs.
If you're on the Left politically and take issue with any of this, let me know. Otherwise we can use the old debating maxim that "silence implies agreement."

Merry day after Christmas

Merry day-after-Christmas to all!

And let me sincerely thank all those who work so hard to enable others to have a wonderful day with family and friends. If you cook or help clean up after the Christmas feast, or care for a child or earn a paycheck to enable your family to survive, you deserve huge thanks that you probably don't hear very often.

You're the best!

Oh, this day-after greeting wasn't intended as a back-handed slap at Christmas--I was just too busy yesterday to post a Merry Christmas.

Friday, December 24

New Dutch law: prison time for "insulting speech"

Ayaan Hirsi Ali knows the true nature of Islam from having lived under it.

She's also acutely aware of efforts by pro-immigration forces in western nations to demonize and ultimately silence their critics. And having been a member of the Dutch parliament from 2003 to 2006 she's keenly aware of the politics and motives that drive the members of that body.

In a recent piece in The Wall Street Journal Ali describes what the Dutch government has done to try to blunt the growing influence of Geert Wilders Freedom Party:
Imagine if a leader within the tea party movement were able to persuade its members to establish a third political party. Imagine he succeeded – overwhelmingly - and that as their leader he stood a real chance of winning the presidency. Then imagine that in anticipation of his electoral victory, the Democrats and Republicans quickly modified an existing antidiscrimination law so that he could be convicted for statements he made on the campaign trail.

All of this seems impossible in a 21st-century liberal democracy. But it is exactly what is happening in Holland to Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders.
[The growing popularity of Wilders' Freedom Party] has spooked Dutch parliamentarians, particularly those wedded to multiculturalism. [So last year] they modified... the Penal Code to make it possible for far-left organizations to take Mr. Wilders to court on grounds of "inciting hatred" against Muslims. Article 137C of the penal code now states that anyone "who publicly, verbally or in writing or image, deliberately expresses himself in any way insulting of a group of people because of their race, their religion or belief . . . will be punished with a prison sentence of at the most one year...." It continues: "If the offense is committed by a person who makes it his profession or habit, or by two or more people in association, a prison sentence of at the most two years...will be imposed."
Notice the astonishingly subjective test for being imprisoned: " any way insulting of a group of people..." Insulting as determined by whom? The code gives no objective criteria for determining what constitutes an "insult"--because there can be none.

Obviously the people most qualified to determine whether they've been insulted are the people pressing the claim. If my religion believes women are inferior to men, and you go spouting off about equal rights for women, you've offended me. QED.

Similarly, if my religion demands that girls be genitally mutilated, and you object to this practice, you've offended me. See how easy this is?

And sure enough, Mr. Wilders was soon charged with violating this impossibly subjective law. His trial began Oct. 4th.

Read Ali's article. Then think about the parallels with what's happening all over Europe and also here in the U.S.

Thursday, December 23

"Wishful thinking will save us"

As the sidebar notes, in an earlier life I flew airplanes for a living.

Flying teaches lots of lessons, of a type one encounters only in a very few professions. For example, in most jobs people can cut corners with no bad effect. But if one tries to violate the laws of aerodynamics, most of the time the penalty is immediate and often career-ending if not literally fatal.

What this teaches is that while people can (and do) play fast and loose in some fields (politics being near the top of the list), other areas are governed by laws that are unbending, unforgiving.

And if you're in one of those "hard" fields and violate one of those laws, no amount of wishful thinking will fix things.

Problem is that unlike flying--where the reality-slap is almost always immediate--in a lot of these "soft" areas the slap can take a lot longer to happen. As in, decades.

The result is that people who blatantly violate natural laws can go for years blathering that everything's perfectly fine, and virtually no one calls them out for their malfeasance. With luck the incompetent or greedy corner-cutters can retire on a fat pension and die before the results of their bad acts are ever felt.

Moreover, because the time between the action and consequences is so long, few voters ever associate a terrible outcome with the person(s) who set us irrevocably on the path to that result years earlier. Thus there is no corrective feedback whatsoever.

We saw this just a couple of years ago in the mortgage meltdown: Years ago Congress passed a law that forced lenders to extend mortgage loans to people who almost certainly wouldn't be able to make the payments (or worse yet, would choose to spend what should have been their mortgage payments on flat-screen TVs and new cars).

Companies with decades of experience in the mortgage lending business pointed out the obvious stupidity of this mandate, and the result it was almost certain to produce. But stupid congresswhores--unconstrained by reality and looking for re-election--silenced most of the objectors by setting up two government agencies--Fannie and Freddie--to guarantee bad loans.

That is, if a borrower--known from the outset to be a lousy credit risk--failed to make their mortgage payments, the government would pay off the bank or lender with taxpayer funds.

Sweet deal, huh--at least for the pols and the deadbeat borrower. For taxpayers? Not so much.

But for the pols it was a resounding success, and they patted themselves on the back endlessly for "making it possible for all Americans to own their own home." But when it all crashed--as it had to, and as hundreds of analysts predicted--no pol ever admitted that his or her actions played the slightest part in setting up the disaster.

In fact, well into the meltdown, reps like the infamous Bawney Fwank were claiming there was no mortgage crisis. And that even if there was, it was the fault of banks and other lenders.

Sure thing, sparky.

This same script applies to the impending financial collapse of U.S. governments at both national and state levels: For decades politicians at both levels have voted to spend more than they received in taxes and fees, in effect fobbing the burden off on future citizens.

That would be your children and grandkids.

Power-hungry, unethical or merely inept politicians kept voting to spend more than their government took in because they knew spending like a drunken sailor would keep getting them re-elected.

It's likely that a lot of these pols were simply too dense to realize that you can't endlessly spend more than you make without incurring some consequence. If so, let's all feel better that they were merely stupid and not malicious. But of course this changes the eventual outcome not a bit.

Okay, if the bad choices have already been made--often decades ago--why am I telling you any of this? After all, the past... yes, I know.

Reason is that in the coming year we're likely to start seeing the first domino begin to fall, as one agency in a mismanaged state--probably Illinois or California--announces it will have to default on ...fill in the blank. The politicians running that state will wring their hands and whine that they don't have any money to avoid a default.

At that point the big investment firms holding the state's bonds will quietly pressure the Obama administration to "loan" the state the relatively small amount of money needed to avoid the looming default. Because the state will be heavily Democrat, the Obamites will agree, and a few dozen billion more taxpayer dollars will be transferred to keep overpaid state employees drawing a salary.

Ah, say the leech-boys in DC, problem solved! Great job, leech-boys.

Initially, at least.

Because once the precedent has been established, there'll be less and less resistance when the feds bail out another state, then another.

Journalists--the media arm of the Democratic party--will prepare the ground for this by running dozens of heart-wrenching stories about how one particular, average middle-class family will suffer if the state is forced into either default or bankruptcy.

And certainly it's true that people will be adversely affected if governments are forced to deal with reality instead of endlessly kicking the can down the road. Just as passengers suffer when an inattentive pilot flies a perfectly sound airliner into a mountain.

I reeeally hope I'm wrong about this. We'll see. Check back in a year.

Welfare gone crazy in the UK

What's the unavoidable end result when a government gives "free" (that is, taxpayer-funded) benefits to people who don't work?

Economists say the result will be more people not working. The tale of one 27-year-old British woman living entirely at taxpayer expense is...enlightening:

As you read the following article notice how well the woman--who is perfectly able to get a job but prefers not to--rationalizes living at taxpayer expense: "If it’s offered to us, then of course we’re going to take it--and we shouldn’t be criticised for doing so."

From the U.K. "Daily Mail" 21 December 2010:
Like many mothers, Eloise has been stockpiling her four children’s Christmas presents for months.
She’s had to budget, too: what with the designer clothes and expensive gadgets on their wish lists, she'll spend at least £300 to £400 (about $450 to $600) on each of them in order to meet the demands for laptops, computer games, trainers and bikes.

Then there’s all the food and drink required to see the family through the festive season. That, she reckons, will set her back several hundred pounds, on top of the thousand pounds or so she spends on presents.

They’re the sort of figures that would surely make the average working parent [depressed] — after all, few are in a position to spend such a sum.

But then, 27-year-old Eloise isn't a member of your average working family.

In fact, she doesn't have a job. Instead her entire income consists of government benefits.

Moreover, as far as Eloise is concerned, it’s all perfectly fair — in fact, the merest hint of a raised eyebrow at her circumstances is enough to make her see red.

"It makes me furious when people criticise how I choose to spend my money," she says.

"Taxpayers seem to feel that they have the right to tell people on benefits how to spend their money,’ she adds. ‘They don’t — the government decides what people like me are entitled to, not the taxpayer.

"I'm just thinking of my kids. That what a mum does. It's my right to do what I want with my benefits.

"If it’s offered to us, then of course we’re going to take it and we shouldn’t be criticised for doing so."

Strong sentiments, and ones that are bound to stir strong feeling at a time when even the most cautious hard-working couples are feeling the pinch.

Especially as it’s unlikely that the average working couple will be able to afford a £3,000 blowout on festive treats for the family as Eloise has this year — not that she sees it that way, of course.

In her view, what is unfair is expecting her children to downgrade their expectations.

"If my children ask me to buy them something for Christmas, then I’m going to bust a gut to get it for them,’ she says.

"I don’t want to have to say to the kids: 'You can’t have that.' It’s not fair and I’m not going to do it."

There are thousands of young women like Eloise around the country — women who have never had more than a fleeting acquaintance with the world of work.

Certainly, elements of Eloise’s tale are all too familiar: a teenage pregnancy, a fractured relationship and four children with a father who contributes not a single penny to their upkeep.

Yet there are notable differences, too, which in some ways make her story all the more depressing.

Intelligent and articulate, there is no reason why Eloise should not be in the ranks of the employed. Indeed, the truly wearying element of her tale is that it simply does not pay her to work.

"I went to the JobCentre and we found that if I went back to work I would actually be £10 a week worse off. I receive £21,528 in annual benefits, and I’d need to earn thirty grand a year before tax to match that.

"I’m not qualified to do a job which pays me that, so it makes no sense for me to do anything other than stay at home. I defy any parent in my position not to do what I’m doing."

As a teenager Eloise wanted to be an air hostess, but pregnancy just before her 17th birthday ended those plans.

After the birth of her daughter, Emily, in March 2001, the young family were allocated a council flat — the first step on the benefits chain which Eloise would now assiduously start to climb. After their second child was born, she moved into a two-bedroom house--again, paid for by the taxpayers.

Eloise and her boyfriend split up in April 2004 — although not before Eloise had given birth to another daughter, Katie, now six.

"I thought we’d be together for ever. But he cheated on me and was violent — he’d smash up the house," she explains. "It was on-off, on-off for a long time, but we finally split up after he hit me."

She did, however, let him back into her bed on one further occasion two years later, when Billy, now four, was conceived.

It rather begs the question, though, that if she knew how unstable the relationship was why continue to have children — in particular, the one who was conceived a good two years after they had finally ‘split for good’.

‘I was young and naïve and every time I got pregnant he would tell me he was going to change,’ she says. ‘Plus I’m a damn good mum. Why shouldn’t I have more kids if I wanted them?’

Particularly, of course, if someone else can pay for them, as Eloise quickly discovered. After attending her DSS office to register as a single parent, she learned she was entitled to a series of benefits, including income support and housing benefit.

The council would, she learned, pay the £61-a-week rent on her council house (by now, she’d upgraded to a three-bedroom property), as well as her £100-a-month council tax and give her £145-a-week child tax credit on top.

Under the current system, her child tax credit has gone up to £180 a week and her rent and council tax are still covered. Her three older children also get free school meals.

It all adds up to a reasonable sum, but Eloise says it’s not enough. ‘It’s hard work making ends meet,’ she says. ‘From that, I have to cover everything from the bills to food and clothes shopping.’

Which, of course, brings us to that huge Christmas bill — a bafflingly large sum — paid for, Eloise says, by saving some of her benefits over the year and taking out a £1,500 private loan, which she will probably manage to pay back only at the end of next year.

‘I’m always in a cycle of borrowing,’ she says. ‘I’ve only just ­managed to pay off the loans from last Christmas.’

As far as she’s concerned, though, it’s more than worth it. ‘The kids deserve nice things. They’re very respectful, they’re not greedy and they appreciate everything they get. Every child deserves a good Christmas, whether their parents work or are on income support.’

In Eloise’s case, "good" includes Xboxes, computer games, a Nintendo DS and, of course, the ubiquitous designer trainers.

‘They don’t demand designer labels, but I like to buy them because I want them to look nice,’ she explains.

‘Not everything they own is designer, but I will buy them stuff from time to time, especially at Christmas, and I don’t see why I can’t do that. I’m just doing the best by my children, and that’s all you can ask of any mother.’

In fairness to Eloise, her offspring do seem a polite, well-behaved bunch — something which, Eloise insists, is a direct result of the fact she is a full-time mum.

‘I’m always here for them — I take them to school, I’m here when they get back and, of course, I’m looking after Billy until he goes to school full-time,’ she says.

‘I’m thinking of my kids in all of this — that’s what a mum does.

‘My kids are better off the way they are at the moment — if I went to work, even if I could afford it, they’d be farmed off into childcare. If their dad was around, maybe it would be different — we could split shifts and make sure there was always a parent around. But I’m not going to do it while I’m single.

‘They’re not young for very long, so I want to enjoy my time with them while I can — and there’s nothing to say you can’t be at home with your children just because the dad isn’t there.

‘It’s hard work being a single mum, looking after children all day, and I bust a gut to do it properly. Whether people like it or not, it makes no sense for me to go to work.’

Of course, many working mums would love to have the option to spend more time at home with their children — except they have the opposite argument, in that they can’t afford not to work.

‘That’s their choice,’ Eloise says blithely. ‘If they want to see their kids more, then they should change their shifts or choose a different job instead of blaming me for their problems.

‘I get sick and tired of others focusing on people on benefits as though we’re the root of all the problems in the world.

‘Would it make them happy if all the people on benefits got sent to internment camps and fed gruel? People need to look at their own lives before they judge us.’

That, of course, is precisely what many working people are doing, one suspects — possibly wondering where they went wrong. Still, things may change: as Eloise knows all too well, government cuts may well see benefits to families such as hers chopped back.

‘Of course I’m concerned,’ she says. ‘It makes me angry when I hear about all the money the Government spends on foreign aid when they’re looking to make life harder for people in this country.’

Eloise does, at least, hope to train as a midwife once her children are all in full-time education, and she insists she has no plans to spend the rest of her life receiving handouts.

‘At the moment I’m at home with Billy, but once the kids are out of the house for most of the day, I do want to get out there and do something. But it’s going to take time and I won’t able to do it overnight.’
Multiply this by ten million and one starts to bit of a problem.

Now, like you, I don't believe children should go hungry or cold because their parents are unable to work, or have made obviously bad choice regarding drugs or alcohol. But I sure don't think the government should be paying welfare to people who use it to buy XBoxes and designer clothes for their kids.

More to the point, when Jean sees Eloise staying at home with her kids while the taxpayer pays for everything, is there anyone who believes Jean wouldn't be tempted to jump at the same chance to stay at home with her kids?

As Eloise said, "If it’s offered to us, then of course we’re going to take it."

Hard to blame Eloise for taking what the system will give her. Rather, blame politicians who either sold out for votes or failed to supervise their own welfare system.

Eh, who cares, right? Nothing can shrink government expenditures enough to matter, they tell us-- simply because government spending is so huge, in so many different areas. Might as well just smile, stock up on booze and ammo, and watch the ship go down.

I'd love to be wrong on this. Unfortunately...

Tuesday, December 21

Some states are in as bad a financial shape as the U.S. Govt !

As we inch closer to the precipice of government financial crisis--at all levels--small hints that something's wrong manage to leak through the media blackout.

For example, Illinois is so financially mismanaged that State Troopers can't use their state-issued credit cards to fill up their tanks -- gas stations won't accept them, as they know the state is simply not good for its debts.

Ah, you say, I don't live in Illinois so why should this interest me? Because, young grasshopper, if IL formally declares bankruptcy, do you think Obama will simply let it sink--and thus cause hundreds of thousands of members of government employees unions to go hungry? Of course not. Instead he would have the federal government--that would be us taxpayers--make good on the state's debts.

And of course once this precedent has been established the floodgates will open: Next up, the far larger California. Which should be enough to turn U.S. government bonds to junk status.

Watch for little snippets like the vignette above to emerge with increasing frequency in the coming months.

Monday, December 20

Double-standard for loud sunrise bells

It would seem that hard-line Muslims believe that the way to win hearts and minds is to...break any law you like and then if anyone complains, scream that your right to practice your religion is being denied.

Case in point: A mosque in NYC has started upping the volume on its sunrise call to prayer--one of the five times a day this is played. Locals say this can be heard five or six blocks away, which would seem to make it pretty loud for those living within a couple of blocks.

NYC has an anti-noise ordinance, and churches aren't allowed to ring their chimes before 9 a.m. or so. But when the source of the noise is ISLAMIC, the city takes no action at all.

One wonders why there are different standards for different religions.

Chavez and Dems agree: If you're poor, blame the rich

Venezuela under Chavez offers a textbook case of how a charismatic thug can cruise to power by demonizing "the rich" and promising the poor all sorts of "free" treats--mainly subsidized food and gasoline. The poor dutifully vote him into power--and he decides to stay there.

Like most socialist thugs, Chavez claims that all the problems experienced by the poor are caused by the rich. As far as I know the exact mechanism has never been explained, but the broad theory goes something like this: That man over there has a LOT more than you do. That's just not fair. So I propose to take some of what he has and give it to you.

That's about all the argument it takes to get most poor people to sign up with your cause. well does Chavez's socialist paradise work? Well, despite being a huge exporter of oil, the country is barely solvent. More significant to the average citizen, last year the country had 14,000 acknowledged murders--in a country of 27 million people.

That's the 4th highest murder rate in the world, and about seven and a half times higher than the U.S. And this figure doesn't include around 4000 mysterious deaths that were never officially ruled as murder.

Gee, wonder why all those peaceful socialists are killing each other at such a staggering rate?

But not to worry: I hear the NY Times is investigating the connection between dictatorships and murder rate, and will publish a front-page story--just as soon as a Republican wins the presidency.

Sunday, December 19

Chavez gets power to rule by decree; Obama taking notes

Venezuela continues its death spiral, courtesy of socialist dictator Hugo Chavez. Last week Chavez asked the lame-duck congress to grant him the power to rule by decree, rather than having laws passed by congress.

You'd think that members of congress wouldn't want to cede their most significant power. But in Venezuela ideology trumps everything, so the lame-duck congress agreed.

Why would they do that? Turns out that in the last election, the party opposing Chavez won enough congressional seats to enable them to have a good shot at blocking outrageous bills.

Chavez responded by getting the outgoing congress (lame-duck, remember?) to agree to cede their lawmaking authority to him for 18 months--an action which effectively removes any power from congress and thus nullifies the big gains made by the opposition in the last election.

Proving yet again that votes mean nothing if the guy at the top is determined enough.

Of course such a thing could never happen here. Can you imagine the outcry if a U.S. president tried to get his allies in a lame-duck congress to ram through outrageous laws a month or so before a new and much less compliant congress was to take office? Why, the NY Times would have six-inch-tall headlines at the top of the front page.

Wait, sorry...that's only if a Republican prez tried that. The socialist Chavez can do this with not a word of condemnation.

As seems to be true of the members of Obama's Democratic party as well.

Border Patrol agent killed--Homeland chief refuses to give details

When something significant happens and the usual suspects in a government don't get on their soapbox to make the usual political statements, it makes ya wonder. Specifically...

A few days ago a U.S. Border Patrol agent in Arizona was shot and killed by...someone. (Link is to the LA Times, not because I believe they're particularly honest or reliable but because lefties/progs/Dems would automatically discount any report from an Arizona paper.)

The latest story is that the BP has four of the suspects in custody. Hey, great. So wouldn't you expect that they'd at least say *something* about who was arrested?

Chief of Homeland Insecurity Janet Napolitano even flew to Arizona to hold a press conference/ photo op to let everyone know that our southern border was Really Really Reeeaaally safe--as safe as it's ever been, I believe is their current propaganda line.

Ranks right up there with "jobs created or saved"--a deliberately unverifiable statement designed to give an impression of competence.

In any case, it's now been 5 days since the killing, and not a word has been released adding anything to the initial reports.

Why do you suppose that is?

Well for starters, the shooting took place 18 miles inside the U.S. territory. So if the shooters were/are illegals, that would seem to be significant to Nappy and Obozo, since it would prove Mexican gangs have the firepower and brazenness to operate such a long way inside the U.S. (Of course it's apparent to most of us that the cartels have members in virtually every major U.S. city, so this isn't exactly a surprise--to most on the right, at least. However, it would be a major blow to the Left, which constantly bleats that the threat from illegals is almost entirely a figment of the imagination and scary rhetoric of Talk Radio.)

Nappy managed to finesse the question of the nationality of the shooters by calling them "bandits." And after that, the black curtain of silence from the Obozo administration--and its underlings in the Border Patrol--descended.

It would be clever if someone in the press would ask Nappy for some details on this, just to see how she'd respond. (I suspect she'd ignore the questioner altogether.) But that would require some competence and even-handedness from the press, so that's never gonna happen.

Can't imagine what I was thinking.

Friday, December 17

Copper thieves burn city's Christmas tree

The city of Birmingham, Alabama, had a 35-foot lighted Christmas tree. The local paper reports that a couple of nights ago some folks stripped the lights off the tree for the copper wiring.

They used gasoline to dissolve the plastic insulation, someone was smoking, and the 35-foot Christmas tree burned up.

But this isn't a story about inept thieves trying to earn their place in the annual Darwin award. Instead, go to the Birmingham News website and read the comments. More than a few locals are actually blaming this on...the rich?!! And on Christmas itself.

No kidding. Here's one:
It was cold last night. These poor people were probably freezeing and hungry. You know theres no jobs. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer. I hope they made enough money off of the copper to get a good meal. As for the stealing, I dont think i want my money that i payed in taxes, back when i had a job, going to the paganism of AMERICAN christmas, which means i have been stolen from to pay for paganism. Im glad they burned it down. I dont support these satinic rituals that America says is the American way. Its satanic. When u celebrate the birth of Jesus, why dont you give Jesus a gift, or even a prayer...... Na we lie to kids about the santa and tell them if there bad Santa (I.E. Satan) will put ashes and switches in your stockings. Jesus Never Ever said anything like that to our children. You have turned santa into Satans Invisable Demon doing his deeds on earth and tormenting the children. God doesnt care about your economy and God doesnt care about your Christmas sells or how much money was made during his sons birthday on earth. Christmas in America is celebrated as the day of lies.
The real story here is the *comments,* and what they say about the attitude of what is presumably a fair number of local residents: Any theft or destruction by poor people isn't their fault, but is Someone Else's Fault--rich people, business owners, George Bush, whoever.


Thursday, December 16

Dems loaded up tax-cut-extension bill with pork

As everyone knows by now, congress is squabbling over whether to extend the Bush tax cuts, and if so, whether "the rich" should or shouldn't be included in the extension.

Congressional Democrats--canny, clever critters who recognize an opportunity when they sees it--immediately began larding the bill up with "earmarks" (appropriations for specific projects that benefit the congresscritter's district--or the congresscritter) for everything they could think of.

Now, why would they do that?

Because it puts the GOP in the perfect bind: Dems know that if Republican members vote to block the pork by voting No on the bill, Dems can cry to the heavens that the eeevil Rethuglicans were responsible for their taxes going up next January.

On the other hand, if the Repubs hold their noses and vote FOR the bill, Dems have a great campaign weapon for the next election: "See, my Republican opponent cries that our national debt is out of control, but he voted FOR all the pork in Bill X, whereas I promise to be the Responsible Adult who will end earmarks and vote for smaller government."

It's a beautifully crafted tactic. Of course it can only succeed if the MSM turns a blind eye to the truth and the hypocrisy. But then again, the MSM is virtually an arm of the Democratic party.

Wikileaks founder wants to keep his own data secret

The charmless publicity-seeker who founded Wikileaks was in court in the UK this week seeking bail. Part of the usual procedure involves stating where the accused will be residing if granted bail.

At which point Assange's lawyer asked the presiding judge to keep this information from the British media...on the grounds that it would represent an invasion of his client's privacy.

So let's review: Secrets are bad--but only if you're the U.S. government. But if you're the founder of the organization that publishes stolen secret government cables (thus encouraging witless wonders like Private Manning to steal secrets on your behalf), it's an invasion of your precious privacy.

You'd think leftists' heads would explode from the contradictions.

Tuesday, December 14

Why do pols support huge immigration when 70%+ of voters oppose?

Ever wondered why it is that even though something like 70 or 80 percent of the American public think we need to end illegal immigration now, with no amnesty, both congress and the pResident seem firmly committed to keep the borders open?

Does that strike you as kind of...odd?

If it does, you might want to consider how the European Union is handling their wave of Muslim immigration from North Africa. In France, Muslim violence is so prevalent that there are big chunks of Paris and other major cities where police, firemen and government officials know they simply can't go without triggering a riot. For the past four summers gangs of Muslim males have roamed French cities setting cars on fire--typically hundreds per night. It's a practice so common it hardly raises eyebrows anymore.

So you'd think the French would have slammed the door on immigrants from North Africa, wouldn't you?

Not at all--the elite in France and other EU countries are just like ours here, supporting unlimited immigration, whether legal or illegal.

Oh, they won't actually say they support illegal immigration, but when they firmly, loudly, screechily oppose any and every effort to beef up border security, deport illegals or reduce the volume of free services provided to illegals by states, it's hard to miss their true intent.

Of course you can understand that Dems support illegals because they're the next huge Dem voting block. And the Left claims the Republican party secretly supports the same because businessmen want the shot at paying the lower wages illegals will accept. (But then liberals turn right around and sue to prevent states like Arizona from enforcing laws to fine businesses that knowingly hire illegals. Go figure.)

I don't doubt both factors are true, even if the extent is unknown. But I suspect the real driver is the same as in Europe: the elites believe nations and borders are outdated concepts, and that the Cool view is to encourage anything that will trash both concepts.

This view is displayed openly in the European Parliament, but can also be seen here, though not yet as openly. A typical view is this statement from Belgian career politician Herman van Rompuy, first president of the European Council: "There is no place for the nation-state in the 21st Century." (Lots of documentation here.)

No one knows for certain why the elites are pushing immigration/open borders so hard. It's hard to believe it could be something so mundane as wanting to be able to hire a gardener or nanny at bargain wages, but certainly the goal of destruction of the nation-state seems at least reasonably likely.

Such a goal would be furthered by conditioning a nation's youth to revile it for past acts, whether real or pure propaganda. Another tool would be to push the notion that "all cultures are equal." And of course if all things are equal then no value, moral code or standard of behavior is better than any other.

This of course would seem to be utter nonsense: Does anyone seriously consider that a barbaric culture that prizes cruelty and enslaves others is the equal of an educated, moral, refined populace that understands and prizes freedom, discovery and creativity? But in elite ivy universities the notion of total equivalence is apparently pushed with a straight face.

A final tool would be to teach the youth that humanity itself is a virus, a cancer; a malevolent life form that preys on other species. A life form whose mere exhaled breaths are fatally heating the planet and causing the extinction of other species.

It's no surprise that young people steeped in this worldview would find the notion of having children repugnant. And indeed, this is what we're seeing today among the elites in prosperous nations.

But don't worry--when the great people who made this nation are all dead, another culture will already be firmly established here, ready to take over.

And their culture will be absolutely equal to ours. By definition.

Oh, and they won't believe any of that crap about humanity being a cancer.

Lefty narcissist embarrasses U.S. government

As everyone knows by now, "Wikileaks"--the creation of an odd duck by the name of Julian Assange--has released a file containing roughly a quarter of a million classified cables from State Department and military sources--including sensitive battlefield intel from informants in Iraq and Afghanistan.

So far the cables have been about as interesting as listening to two highschool girls gossiping: Some foreign government staffer thinks his boss is incompetent. Oh no!! And can you believe that dress Janelle wore to the party??

Of course the organization may have more damaging stuff, but so far it's pretty unimpressive.

But even the innocuous stuff released so far has caused significant damage to the U.S.--simply because fewer members of foreign governments--or just foreign citizens with information--will be willing to work with us. After all, our government doesn't prosecute those who leak secret diplomatic and military cables, so they have every reason to expect this same thing will happen again in the future.

Of course, to Julian Assange--seemingly a classic narcissist--this is insignificant compared to the chance to grab the world's attention for a period and simultaneously embarrass the U.S. Gaze upon his greatness, ye mighty, and dispair!

I mean, what leftist wouldn't absolutely love to be in this position, sticking it to The Man? He's even declared that he has a Doomsday Device--a cache of Especially Sensitive Documents that he's encrypted and sent to a dozen news agencies around the globe. If anyone in the U.S. government should dare to prosecute him, his associates release the key and presumably the U.S. government dies of acute embarrassment.

Truly, this is every left-wing bomb-thrower's wet dream. And lefty chicks are leaving comments to the effect that they find this behavior extremely attractive.

Victor Hanson is highly unimpressed.
Like all narcissists, when reminded that his recklessness will lead to violence, mayhem, and deaths, he dismisses such dangers as insignificant in comparison to the benevolence that he bestows.

Lefty narcissists. Who could possibly foresee anything going wrong with that combination?

Wednesday, December 1

Unemployment rises--MSNBC doesn't notice.

When a Republican is president, if the unemployment rate were to rise two-tenths of a percent it'd be the lead story in news broadcasts for days.

So how does the media react to the same event when Duh Won is at the helm? Well if you're one of the main Dem mouthpieces--MSNBC--it's barely worth mentioning.

Searching their website for "unemployment rate" the day after the information was released produced several hits, but in each case the stories were about something else entirely (example: "Senate bid to renew 'middle class' tax cuts fails") with the unemployment figures as an incidental item ten or fifteen grafs down the page.

And here's an example how MSNBC presented the woeful news:
The debate is taking place a day after the Labor Department reported that the unemployment rate nudged closer to double digits again — 9.8 percent, after three straight months at 9.6 percent — a reminder that the economy is still recovering only fitfully.
Did ya get that? MSNBC wants you to believe that unemployment rising two tenths of a percent isn't really bad news at all, but merely "a reminder that the economy is still recovering..."!

To most rational people a two-tenths rise in unemployment would be an indicator that recovery isn't happening. But to committed leftists, when one of their own is pResident, it's no problem at all.

Remamber how the MSM lambasted Bush--seemingly endlessly--for what they derided as a "jobless recovery"? But now, of course, Things Are Different.

Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength.
War is peace.

Hey MSNBC: George Orwell was actually writing about you.

Double-standards at the NY Times, part "infinite"

Ah, the never-ending hypocrisy of the NY Times and the Left, as caught by The Blaze:
When hacked emails began to appear on the web in 2009 suggesting that climate scientists at East Anglia had falsified global warming data, the New York Times refused to publish a single word of the leaked info. Here's their explanation:

The documents appear to have been acquired illegally and contain all manner of private information and statements that were never intended for the public eye, so they won’t be posted here.

But when the website WikiLeaks unveiled hundreds of thousands of stolen classified government documents--many potentially embarrassing to the U.S.--the Times immediately published a sample of the information. Here's their explanation:

The Times believes that the documents serve an important public interest, illuminating the goals, successes, compromises and frustrations of American diplomacy in a way that other accounts cannot match.

The double-standard hypocrisy is stunning. Did you catch the rationale in the first Times explanation? These "statements...were never intended for the public eye, so they won’t be posted here."

Then wouldn't you logically think (I know, I know, liberals don't use that faculty) that the classified cables written by U.S. diplomats back to the home office would similarly not have been intended to be seen by the public? So what happened to the Times' earlier standard? Why did it go out the window in the Wiki-leaks case?

Because (obviously) the latter case damaged the U.S. There can be no other explanation.

Anyone else would surely be embarrassed to be so blatant in their double-standards. But as the mouthpiece of the Left, the Times has a responsibility to show aspiring young lefties how it's done.