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Is the Civil War Over?

By 7.14.15

In the wake of the recent murders in a South Carolina church, the killer’s hope of igniting a race war produced the opposite effect. Blacks and whites in South Carolina came together to condemn his act and the race hate behind it.

Some saw in the decision to remove the Confederate flag from in front of the state house a symbolic repudiation of the old South’s racial past — and the end of the Civil War. But, unfortunately, wars do not end until both sides decide that it is over.

The black parishioners who expressed forgiveness toward the killer did more than most of us could do, and the whites who responded with solidarity did their part. Note how quickly this was done, by ordinary people of good will — black and white — without the “help” of racial activists like Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson.

Professional race hustlers have no incentive to see our current civil war end. They see in this shooting only an opportunity to escalate their demands.

The Environmental Spectator

Here Comes the Sun

By 7.14.15

Remember the climate catastrophe predicted by science savant Al Gore and 97 percent of his colleagues in climatology, meteorology, and alchemy? The world was warming, the seas were rising, and polar bears were packing up all their personal items, locking their tray tables, and putting their seats in the upright position.

Well, that rough landing, alarmist scenario is so last century, at this point. Literally, temperatures have not risen, visibly, annually, for going on 18 years now.

Thus, last week, another group of scientists came up with another, new hypothesis, based on computer models, rather than empirical evidence, like all “consensus science” should be. This time, the lads and lasses in the laboratory are convinced the world is heading for a cooling cycle, and there’s nothing former vice president Gore, and his friend President Barack Obama can do to stop the seas from rising, or whatever. Blame it all on the Sun.

Another Perspective

Obama Throws Open 46 Cell Doors at Last

By 7.14.15

President Barack Obama commuted the sentences of 46 federal drug offenders Monday. In his first term, Obama issued one meager commutation; he was arguably the stingiest modern president when it came to the exercise of his pardon authority. Now, White House spokesman Josh Earnest noted, the president has issued 89 commutations — more than the previous four presidents combined.

Among the 46 commutation recipients, 14 were serving life sentences for nonviolent crimes. That’s why the president had to act. The war on drugs distorted the criminal justice system so completely over the past few decades that, according to the U.S. Sentencing Commission, 42 percent of life sentences imposed in federal courts in 2013 were for drug offenses — as opposed to 12 percent for murder.

As a younger candidate, Obama had been highly critical of federal mandatory minimum sentences. Critics of the war on drugs had expected Obama to use his unfettered pardon power granted in the U.S. Constitution to commute the sentences of nonviolent offenders serving decades for their small-fish roles in the drug trade. After all, Congress could not stop him.

Main Street U.S.A.

‘Equality’ and Demagoguery

By 7.14.15

If the country is trending leftward — as evidenced by all the demands for equality and redistribution coming out of the Democratic camp, and seconded by the media — the question arises: Why is the country trending leftward?

To put it another way, does Hillary Clinton think she’s going to become president by sounding as though she just got off the phone with Bernie Sanders? Likelier, her acute political nose senses Change; and being a Clinton, she proposes leading us in the indicated direction.

To return to the original question, has she got us right? That, fed up with banks, public religiosity, and the cry of the hungry, we’re set to junk the legacy of Ronald Reagan?

Oh, I don’t know. I doubt it, actually. I think we’re living through another of the political cycles every country experiences, when dissatisfactions of one kind or another breed the desire to escape. Escape to liberalism — excuse me, “progressivism,” the media have schooled us in saying — is an odd program for recovering national prosperity and self-confidence.

Political Hay

Yes, Trump Can Win

By 7.14.15

The media assures: Donald Trump can’t possibly win.

The GOP Establishment assures: Donald Trump can’t possibly win.

After assuring everyone that 1) Trump was never going to run in the first place and 2) once he declared that he would run they insisted he would get nowhere, we now find that these whiz-bangs were wrong on both counts. Trump is in the race and he has surged to the top of the polls, drawing huge crowds. By chance, here in my home Central Pennsylvania county, a race to fill a vacancy in the state legislature in an August 4th election has Republican candidate Greg Rothman knocking on doors in this traditionally Republican district. Rothman tells me he has knocked on 3,100 doors thus far — and while he’s there to talk state issues residents in this area are volunteering to him that they support… Donald Trump. 

Yet in spite of the reality of Trump’s candidacy and the support surging for his candidacy — and the startling reality that rank-and-file Republicans are spontaneously telling a Pennsylvania legislative candidate that they like Donald Trump — the Trump critics insist he can’t win.

Special Report

Fateful Fortnight of Denial

By 7.14.15

A fortnight overseas brought sunshine on the lovely Greek Isle of Naxos and gustatory classics in Provence, all enjoyed with stellar companionship of friends old and new. But in the background were ominous events that augur ill for global and domestic stability.

In the forefront was the declaration of bankruptcy by Greece’s far-leftist populist president, backed by a rousing 60 percent “no” to European central banks in a referendum on a reconstruction plan. That Athens was peaceful on referendum Sunday made for a pleasant visit strolling around the Acropolis and a lovely café dinner afterward, all the while surrounded by smiling Greek faces. The latest accord defers the eventual reckoning arising from the financial meltdown facing Greece—and for the European Union.

Across the Eurasian landmass China’s stock markets declined vertiginously, with one Wall Street Journal analysis noting that the classic signs of a bubble were all at their historical extremes: 

Special Report

OBAMAKILL: End of Life Counseling

By 7.13.15

Look out, Grandma.

Medicare said last week it wants to start paying for end-of-life counseling.

It’s being sold as “death with dignity,” but it’s more like dying for dollars. Seniors are pressured to forego life-sustaining procedures  to go into hospice. That enriches the booming hospice industry and also frees up dollars for the left’s favored social causes.

Why is the government meddling with how we cope with death? The  Institute of Medicine doesn’t mince words. Scrimping on seniors will free up money “to fund highly targeted and carefully tailored social services for both children and adults.” Just like Obamacare. Robbing Grandma to spread the wealth.

In 2009, President Obama said seniors are getting too many procedures and maybe they’re “better off not having the surgery, but taking the painkiller.” Obama’s health guru Ezekiel Emanuel argues the elderly should be a lower priority because “they have already had more life-years.”

It’s the perfect storm of ideology and industry greed, with hospice providers lobbying lawmakers to make end-of-life counseling the standard.

Buy the Book

Hitler and Gun Control

By 7.13.15

Gun Control in the Third Reich: Disarming the Jews and “Enemies of the State”
By Stephen P. Halbrook
(The Independent Institute, 280 pages, $22.95)

One of the issues that liberals and gun control advocates are most loath to discuss is how heavily and effectively totalitarians and mass murderers have relied upon gun registration and other firearms controls to round up “enemies of the state.” Hitler, Stalin, Castro, and Mussolini all seized upon gun laws to punish, incarcerate, and even exterminate their opponents, while permitting their own evil cliques to expand and strengthen the state and party monopolies on gun ownership.

Stephen P. Halbrook, an attorney and Research Fellow with the Independent Institute in California, has written a remarkably well-documented analysis of how Adolf Hitler and his Nazi henchmen in the government made private, “unauthorized” gun ownership a capital crime, while using registration records to effectively turn ordinary Germans into instant criminals.

Political Hay

Six Reasons Why Scott Walker Will Be Elected President

By 7.13.15

Shortly before Scott Walker was re-elected Wisconsin’s Governor for the third time in four years, I made the case that if Walker prevailed Republicans should nominate him as their presidential candidate right then and there. Since January, Walker has been at or near the top of most public opinion polls of preferred standard bearers for the GOP in 2016, and today he officially launches his White House bid, making him the 15th Republican to join the field. While this field is quite crowded, I believe it will soon become apparent that Scott Walker stands out head and shoulders above the rest. Here are the six reasons why I believe Walker will not only win the GOP nomination, but be elected President in November 2016.

1. He’s Part of the Middle Class (or He Actually Shops at Kohl’s and Sears)

Another Perspective

Donald Trump Is GOP’s Dark Lord Voldemort

By 7.13.15

Donald Trump is the GOP’s Voldemort, the Dark Lord and villain of the Harry Potter children’s book series. To thinking Republicans who don’t want to go through another circle of hell like the 2012 presidential primary, Trump is He Who Must Not Be Named. When a partisan mistakenly utters his name, media dementors — soulless creatures who sail through the airwaves — pop out from nowhere and suck the oxygen out of the hapless offender. Helpless and filled with dread, some victims die, while others slip into nothingness. The dementors will not relent. They want to turn the primary into a pain-inducing referendum on the Dark Lord.

Mexicans are Trump’s muggles — that’s author J.K. Rowling’s word for humans with no knack for magic. Trump, 69, rants about Mexicans and undocumented immigrants all the time. When he announced June 16 he was running for president, he called them criminals, drug dealers and rapists.

Just as Voldemort thought he could get some intrepid students at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to follow him even after he schemed against them, Trump believes he can win over the Latino vote, or so he told NBC.