Special Report

Special Report

North Korea’s Disappearing Man

By 12.9.13

If you run a police state such as North Korea (a.k.a. “The People’s Republic of North Korea”) publicity is almost always bad, so you avoid it if possible. There are occasional exceptions and the North Korea authorities spotted one a month ago. A guided tour group was about to leave after a week’s visit when, in a last-minute review of the passenger list, an operative noticed that one of the visitors had not only been a U.S. Army veteran of the Korean War, but also may have been in counter-intelligence. With that, they took Merrill Newman, a retired California businessman, off the plane and held him. He may have been on a sinister mission, they hinted. 

This ran widely in short articles in U.S. newspapers and television and very conveniently obscured thinly covered reports from South Korean sources that ruler Kim Jong-un had fired his Uncle, Jang Song Thaek, the husband of Aunt Kyong-hui Kim. Jang was widely considered to be the government’s No. 2 man and was the one had been designated to teach his novice nephew the ropes when he inherited the emperor’s job upon the death of his father, Kim Jong-il.

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Special Report

The Malversation of Eric Schneiderman

By 12.5.13

Uh-oh.

New York Attorney General Eric “Shakedown” Schneiderman has just been walloped with an ethics complaint.

A long and meticulously detailed 228-page ethics complaint.

Filed by… Donald Trump.

While the word isn’t in the complaint, the New York State Constitution has a specific term for what Trump is describing.

That would be found in Article XIII, Section 5, which provides for the removal of state officials — including the attorney general — for “misconduct or malversation….”

What is “malversation”? Webster’s defines it this way:

improper or corrupt behavior, esp. in public office

How did Schneiderman respond?

By sending out an ex-Obama campaign staffer to denounce Trump — thereby making Trump’s point exactly. A point to which we will return.

Let’s talk malversation, shall we? Specifically the malversation of Eric Schneiderman. In chapter and verse.

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Special Report

The Pope Attacks Free Enterprise

By 12.3.13

There is no polite way to describe Pope Francis’s recent tirade against free enterprise, except to say his heart is in the right place in wanting to help the world’s poor and downtrodden. However, in venturing as boldly as he does into economic and political commentary, the pope makes a number of serious misjudgments.

In his 50,000-word “Apostolic Exhortation,” released by the Vatican on November 24, Pope Francis follows in the well-trod footsteps of a long line of left-wing commentators in leveling a series of wild charges against free-market economics.

He says, for instance, that “some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world.”

In the same way, Barack Obama continually attacks what he calls “the economic philosophy” of those who “say we should give more and more to those with the most and hope the prosperity trickles down to everyone else.”

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Special Report

A Challenge To Our Beliefs

By 12.3.13

Depressing news about black students scoring far below white students on various mental tests has become so familiar that people in different parts of the ideological spectrum have long ago developed their different explanations for why this is so. But both may have to do some rethinking, in light of radically different news from England.

The November 9th-15th issue of the distinguished British magazine "The Economist" reports that, among children who are eligible for free meals in England's schools, black children of immigrants from Africa meet the standards of school tests nearly 60 percent of the time -- as do immigrant children from Bangladesh and Pakistan. Black children of immigrants from the Caribbean meet the standards less than 50 percent of the time.

At the bottom, among those children who are all from families with low enough incomes to receive free meals at school, are white English children, who meet the standards 30 percent of the time.

"The Economist" points out that, in one borough of London, white students scored lower than black students in any London borough.

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A Marxian Interpretation of Contemporary America

By 12.2.13

Karl Marx got lost in dreams of leading a proletarian revolution that would make him a hero to the working class. It’s an old fantasy of the intelligentsia — the wise and articulate leader of the unwashed, the Great White Father among the natives. Watch Hillary Clinton shoring up votes among African-Americans to see the contemporary version.

As for Marxist economics, it was never more anything more than a misunderstanding. I remember working in a paper box factory in my youth and thinking in Marxist terms of how any improvements we made in the manufacturing process would be gobbled up by the owners as “excess profits.” Then it suddenly hit me — they would much more likely be passed along to consumers as lowered prices. In fact, it made much more sense and was much fairer that improvements should be passed along to consumers in general rather than monopolized by a few workers that happened to be employed there at the time. It was this general permutation of wealth that made capitalism such a great system.

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