Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Risks of amnesty

Risks of amnesty

by Scott Johnson in Immigration

The Gang of Eight immigration bill is an adjunct and analogue to Obamacare. Claims by proponents on its behalf lack veracity. Indeed, the operative assumption should be that the opposite of such claims is closer to the truth. Heather Mac Donald cuts through a lot of blather in “The real risks of amnesty.” It sounds like 1986 all over again, only worse. She writes:
Mickey Kaus has demolished the Senate bill’s central claim: that it makes border security a precondition for the granting of permanent-resident status. In fact, the enforcement goals consist of empty promises; nothing actually hangs on their achievement or requires that they ever be met. Immigrant advocate Frank Sharry candidly echoed Kaus’s analysis in the Wall Street Journal: “The triggers [for obtaining green cards] are based on developing plans and spending money, not on reaching that effectiveness, which is really quite clever.”
But the legislation’s most critical amnesty comes right away, before even the pretense of beefed-up security. Illegal aliens will get their illegal status removed six months after the bill is passed upon payment of $500. The formerly illegal aliens will be allowed to remain in the country legally, under so-called “probationary status,” for ten years (while those who wish to enter the country legally wait patiently in their home countries for permission to enter). This lawful presence is virtually everything that most would-be illegal aliens hope for, since few cross the border with any desire to become U.S. citizens.
What about the politics? Mac Donald:
The political effects of the proposed amnesty won’t benefit the GOP, whatever the party’s hopes might be. Hispanics will not shift their vote to Republicans in the next presidential election unless Republicans promote the same big-government programs, such as Obamacare, that attract Hispanics to the Democratic Party in the first place. So Republican handwringing over how to woo the Hispanic vote will begin all over again, and the next solution will be to convert probationers immediately to legal permanent-resident or citizenship status. Expect to hear the mantra: “Bring the probationers out from the shadows.”
And then there is this:
he coming amnesty’s insult to the rule of law and its magnet effect on future illegal immigration could perhaps have been justified had the proposed reform decisively converted the legal-immigration system from a family-based to a skills-based one. Instead, the Senate bill makes only a minor change in that direction. Reconfiguring immigration priorities is crucial, because many children of unskilled immigrants are assimilating into the underclass. They are also placing enormous burdens on the nation’s schools. California governor Jerry Brown proposes to redirect state taxpayer dollars from middle-class schools to those with high proportions of “English learners,” because Hispanic students lag so far behind whites and Asians. Most of these “English learners” were born and raised in the U.S. but are characterized as non-native speakers because their academic language skills are so low. Nationally, only 18 percent of Hispanic eighth-graders read at or above proficiency levels, according to the 2011 National Assessment of Educational Progress. Because of their low academic achievement (and their high rates of illegitimacy), second- and third-generation Hispanics rely on government welfare programs far more than native-born whites.
It should be noted that Rich Lowry cuts through the blather as well in his Politico column “Chuck Schumer’s triumph.”
What is to be done? For the moment, the answer is to call out the supporters of the bill on what they are peddling.


Don's Tuesday column

             THE WAY I SEE IT   by Don Polson  Red Bluff Daily News   4/30/2013

Geoengineering, great dinner, lousy Senator

You may want to take the time to hear a special guest speaking on an extremely thought-provoking topic, geoengineering, at tonight’s Tea Party Patriots meeting, 6 PM, Westside Grange. Dane Wigington is a researcher, highly educated with a background in solar energy, employment in Bechtel Power Corp. and a multi-state contractor who has, based on his experience, raised some alarming questions and observations over geoengineering and “chemtrails.” Visit http://guymcpherson.com/2012/09/geoengineering-dangerous-proposal-or-lethal-reality/ to learn more.

“He focused his efforts and energy on the geoengineering issue when he began to lose very significant amounts of solar uptake due to … ever-increasing solar obscuration caused from aircraft spraying …” I provide this information for readers without taking position due to lack of knowledge. What he and others are saying is that there are either proposed or implemented man-made methods to negate the effects of global warming, the side effects of which pose unforeseen threats to human and nature’s health.

As I write, the Vets Hall is now restored to its prior condition; the decorations, bunting, drapery, etc are stored until the fair; a delightful meal was enjoyed by all who attended (my dinner, uneaten due to MC duties, became one of the best brunches I’ve had in a while); and attendees were rewarded with one of the best programs in recent memory. The Tehama County Republican Red, White and Blue Dinner, in chalking up another fine fundraiser, has consistently been the pinnacle Republican event in the North State.

Mr. Frank Jones, in playing Abraham Lincoln, gave a very moving recitation of the Gettysburg Address, incorporating the prayerful nature of Mr. Lincoln’s spoken ministrations to America and her citizens. Additionally, he shared some rather rib-tickling anecdotes and stories, the best one of which involved a farmer’s donkey that was better at forecasting the weather than a government expert. Asked why he refused to make the animal his official weatherman, he simply exclaimed, “If I did that, why, every jackass would want a job in government.” (bah-da-bump)

It’s remarkable that from our own ranks were found four absolutely marvelous voices: Linda Davis, Val Say, J.R. Gonzales and Miles Leyva, Red Bluff High School Senior. From the National Anthem, to the Battle Hymn of the Republic, to Civil War songs like “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” and “Goober Peas,” to America the Beautiful, all were voices worthy of the finest choirs. The sound system, put together by Rick Lytle, was simply superb; I don’t know where he’s listed but there must be some way, if you need quality sound/mixer/recorded music, to find him.

Space constraints and lack of notes limit my ability to describe Elizabeth Emken’s keynote speech except to say that her rendition of the core Republican values, and our ability to present those values to the broader citizenry, was inspirational. To me, her comments on the imperative of appealing to voters with a message of, shall we say, self-sufficiency touched on so much of what is driving America away from the values that have been instrumental in our economic and moral strength. After most a century of the liberal/progressive philosophy of ever-expanding government trying to fix all of society’s ills with deficit fueled, ever broadening social and welfare benefits, America faces a debt and collectivist point of no return.

Trillions upon trillions spent over decades to induce dependency upon government-provided welfare, food stamps, medical care, housing subsidies, tax credits and so on can only be reversed with a Republican message of economic growth and fiscal responsibility; inculcating the once-legendary American work ethic back into the masses of able-bodied but now-dependant, potentially productive citizens. Only by following that path, pursuing that mission, can our nation’s finances begin the necessary transition to rising economic tides, self-worth, industriousness and the corresponding reduction of government spending programs, as well as rising revenues. That’s the way I see it.

Emken’s apologies for losing to Sen. Diane Feinstein aside—given the near-slavish pro-Democrat voting pattern among California’s low-information voters—her prognosis on Feinstein’s likely legislative agenda was on-the-mark. Not only did our leftist Senator give her all to advancing a once-failed, unconstitutional and completely non-responsive (to the actual facts behind recent mass shootings) “assault weapons” ban, but she also embarrassed herself at the hands of Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. He had the brilliant, unmitigated gall to ask our very senior Senator what other amendments she felt were subject to her interpretation of what citizens were entitled to (my paraphrasing); She was adamant, you see, that she had the wisdom and legislative purview to tell her fellow Americans what guns they have no right to own. She uttered some inanity about being smarter than a fourth grader but was utterly unconvincing on that count.

I truly, deeply hope that Democrats are determined to continue to attempt to advance gun control or, as Harry Reid said in an unguarded moment, “anti-gun” measures, and that they think it will endear them to voters enough to make Nancy Pelosi the Speaker of the House of Representatives in the 2014 elections. It is only blind ideological hubris that explains it; it should, I hope, not only allow the Republicans to keep the House, but to retake the Senate, giving Obama the genuine lame duck status he so richly deserves.

The Misnamed Marketplace Fairness Act

The Misnamed Marketplace Fairness Act

By The Editors

Monday, April 29, 2013

The Lessons of 4/15/13

The Lessons of 4/15/13

By Brian Fahy & Garrett Fahy
“Approximately 30 seconds before the first explosion, he lifted his phone to his ear as if he was speaking on his cell phone, and kept it there for approximately 18 seconds. A few seconds after he finished the call, the large crowd of people around were seen reacting to the first explosion. Virtually every head turned to the east (towards the finish line) and stayed in that direction in apparent bewilderment and alarm. Bomber Two, virtually alone among the individuals in front of the restaurant, appeared calm. He glanced to the east and then calmly but rapidly began moving to the west, away from the direction of the finish line. He walked away without his knapsack, having left it on the ground where he had been standing. Approximately 10 seconds later, an explosion occurs in the location where Bomber Two had placed his knapsack.”
So reads paragraph 14 of FBI Special Agent Daniel R. Genck’s affidavit in support of the government’s two-count criminal complaint against Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, one of two Chechnyan brothers responsible for bombing the Boston Marathon, and the only one still alive to face charges. The White House announced Monday that Tsarnaev will be tried in civilian court on two counts: use of a weapon of mass destruction, and malicious destruction of property resulting in death. A few observations are in order.
First, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Tsarnaev cannot be tried in a military commission. Under the Military Commissions Act, Tsarnaev can be detained, designated an enemy combatant, and then face charges in an Article III court based on information gleaned from that detainment. The same administration that claims the authority to kill Americans via drone strike treats Tsarnaev, a demonstrated terrorist, as nothing more than a common criminal.
Second, reading the full text of the government’s complaint, it’s apparent why Tsarnaev should be detained in Gitmo as an enemy combatant. The complaint speaks of the impact of the marathon bombing on interstate commerce, but this explanation misses the mark: it’s about terrorism. The administration’s response ensures we will know less about Tsarnaev when the terrorist lawyers-up.
To get to the bottom of what happened here, and determine why the Boston Police, FBI, CIA, DHS, NSA and DIA failed to stop this, the government will have to explore areas far beyond the competency and security clearance of a 12-person lay jury. This is especially the case if it is discovered that the Brothers Tsarnaev had international assistance. Already a radical imam in Australia has been identified as a source of inspiration for older brother Tamerlan.
Third, this attack suggests that the ongoing tension between “profiling” and political correctness must be recalibrated with a new openness to limited and targeted surveillance. It is inexplicable that our federal government does not or cannot, as the NYPD terrorist squad does, make a concerted effort to closely follow young, Islamic males who gravitate towards radicalism.
Beyond the brother bombers, it’s not as if the terrorist profile is unknown. The deadliest terrorist attacks on United States assets and personnel over the past two decades have been the work of radicalized Muslim men between the ages of 18 and 40. The same is true of the 7/7 terrorists who attacked London. And United Flight 175, which was flown into the World Trade Center’s South Tower on 9/11 by five radicalized Muslim males, originated at Boston’s Logan Airport. Fear of profiling must find accommodation with a proactive watchfulness of a specific population targeting our nation.
Fourth, we must recognize that the wars overseas may have reduced the ability or willingness of Al Qaeda and the Taliban to launch attacks against Americans in America. Indeed, the Taliban disclaimed responsibility for the marathon bombings. The result may be more lone actors or coordinated attacks at home. The solution cannot just be domestic drone strikes, but better border and immigration enforcement, targeted surveillance, and increased emphasis on community intelligence gathering.
Fifth, and most critically, America may invite more attacks if Leftist media outlets and academic institutions continue to disparage America as “Islamophobic” and provide talking points and motivation for terrorists. Surviving bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev told investigators that his older brother believed Islam was under attack, and it was his duty to fight back. In time we may learn the basis of this mistaken belief, but the Left’s continual smearing of American identity, coupled with its anti-assimilation focus on group identity and victimhood, poses grave threats for the integration of the next Tsarnaev brothers.
It is said America learned the lessons of 9/11 and responded accordingly. Whether America will learn the lessons of 4/15/13 and begin to combat home-grown Islamic terror remains to be seen.


Obama’s Budget: Hike Death Tax to fuel more wasteful spending

Obama’s Budget: Hike Death Tax to fuel more wasteful spending

Jim Martin – “The President wants to increase the Death Tax on Seniors to fund a ultra-liberal budget that never balances!”

Alexandria, VA – Today, President Obama released his FY 2014 budget proposal, in which he asked Congress to increase the Death Tax again, after demanding an increase during the Fiscal Cliff. President Obama called for an increase of the death tax to 45 percent tax on eligible estates. The 60 Plus Association has been leading the charge in pushing for repeal of this onerous tax and strongly opposed this budget proposal. In the recent Senate budget debate, 80 Senators voted to repeal or reduce the Death Tax, not increase it. Clearly the president is out of step with the majority of Congress and the country.
Jim Martin, Chairman of the 60 Plus Association had this to say about the budget; “This budget confirms the fact that the president is out of touch with the seniors and the American people, especially on the issue of the Death Tax. Consistently, 60-70 percent of Americans say “kill the Death Tax” but the President wants to do the opposite by hiking the death tax to 45 percent, confiscating nearly half of your lifetime’s work. The President should not increase the Death Tax on the backs of those seniors who have worked their whole lives to pass on a family business or farm to the next generation.”
“Even Senator Harry Reid disagrees with the president on the Death Tax. Last month Leader Reid voted with 79 of his colleagues to repeal or reduce the Death Tax. Last year, Congressman Brady’s “Death Tax Repeal Permanency Act” amassed 222 bi-partisan cosponsors in the House. The President has doubled down on his ‘class warfare’ attacks on small businesses by calling for another hike in the Death Tax in his budget. Luckily, Obama’s proposal has no chance of becoming law, especially while 60 Plus is fighting for the full and permanent repeal of the Death Tax.”


Sunday, April 28, 2013

Obama’s Psychodramas--Unlike Sandy Hook and gun control, the Tsarnaev case teaches real lessons about immigration (DP: Brilliant, incisive analysis)

Obama’s Psychodramas
Unlike Sandy Hook and gun control, the Tsarnaev case teaches real lessons about immigration.
By Victor Davis Hansen

Did FDR End or Extend the Depression? (DP: Sorry that it covers lables and links on right)

Did FDR End or Extend the Depression?

President Franklin Roosevelt's "New Deal," has long been credited with rescuing the nation from the Great Depression of the 1930's. Lee Ohanian, Professor of Economics at UCLA, challenges this conventional wisdom in a provocative examination of FDR's economic policies.

The Immigration Power-Grab--The Gang of Eight have fallen back on “unreviewable discretion.”

The Immigration Power-Grab
The Gang of Eight have fallen back on “unreviewable discretion.”
By Andrew Stiles

Saturday, April 27, 2013

What Boston Means for Immigration Policy


The Boston Marathon bombing has intensified objections to the Gang of Eight’s so-called comprehensive-immigration-reform bill, and rightly so: The terrorist attack in Boston underlines several failures in our immigration system — failures that the bill under consideration would do little or nothing to rectify and would in some cases make considerably worse.
From a domestic-policy point of view, the most critical of these failures is the failure to maintain an immigration system oriented toward assimilation — the unapologetic expectation that immigrants will be fully immersed in American life. Assimilation has important cultural and economic benefits. It also makes immigrants less likely to become Islamist terrorists. The case of Tamerlan Tsarnaev — a non-citizen, charged in 2009 with a violent crime, flagged by a foreign intelligence service as a likely Islamic radical and terror threat, who traveled abroad to jihadist hot spots before returning to the United States to carry out his attack — suggests very strongly that our screening-and-evaluations system is broken. The case of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev suggests very strongly that our ability and willingness to fully assimilate immigrants is damaged, much as the London bombings pointed toward the United Kingdom’s inability or unwillingness to assimilate its immigrants.
Assimilation was never part of the agenda for the Tsarnaev family. The bombers’ parents claimed refugee status at a time when their place of residence was Kazakhstan, where there are many ethnic Chechens and little in the way of persecution that would justify refugee status. In fact, Tsarnaev père apparently had little reason to fear persecution in Russia, either: He returned there to live, and his son Tamerlan spent an extended period of time with him there, with side trips to the Islamist hot spot of Chechnya. Tamerlan never became a U.S. citizen (his flagging by the Russian intelligence service as a likely Islamic radical prevented that), his parents had returned to Russia, and he himself was in and out of the country a great deal: not exactly a candidate for what our forebears used to quaintly describe as our national melting pot.
The Gang of Eight bill would move us away from the traditional American ideal of assimilation rather than toward it. It would grant amnesty to many illegal immigrants with a tenuous connection to the United States, and to some who are not even currently living here. At the same time it would do a great deal to increase unskilled immigration, particularly by Hispanics. And it would create a new class of “temporary” workers and their families who would be expected to be in this country but not of it, until those standards are relaxed. Combine these features of the bill and what you have is not a recipe for welcoming new Americans but for encouraging cultural and linguistic separatism.
Most illegal immigrants come here for economic reasons, of course, and not out of any desire to join our country in any larger sense. Others cross the border illegally for entirely different reasons: Among those who took advantage of the 1986 amnesty was “agricultural worker” Mahmud Abouhalima, one of the terrorists who carried out the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. Terrorism aside, the main consequence of the 1986 amnesty was to encourage even more illegal immigration and, consequently, even less assimilation.
Rather than tighten refugee-status rules that the Tsarnaevs abused, the Gang of Eight bill would loosen them, for example by removing the one-year deadline for claiming refugee protection once on American soil and by abbreviating the review process for many such claims for protection.
Senator Lindsey Graham and other partisans of the Gang of Eight bill argue that its security provisions would help to ferret out threats. In practice, that is unlikely to be the case. Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s file should have had more red flags on it than a May Day parade, but that was not enough for the FBI to revisit his case or question his travel to Chechnya. As the 11 million illegals testify, our federal bureaucracy and law-enforcement agencies either cannot or will not enforce the immigration laws we already have on the books. The Gang of Eight bill would have them start enforcing our immigration laws — and administer a guest-worker program, and evaluate and process 11 million illegals, and improve the vetting of new immigrants. That is unlikely to prove successful. Senator Graham’s endless infomercial promises to the contrary are either cynical politics or sloppy thinking — both of which are in varying degree characteristic of the Gang of Eight’s overall approach. We would not be surprised if Senator Graham also promised that his bill would relieve lumbago and get rid of hard-to-clean grass stains.
Rather, there will be a great deal of political pressure to clear the “backlog” of legalization-seekers as quickly as possible. And though the possibility may not have occurred to Senator Graham, would-be terrorists are just as likely to take their chances staying illegal in a highly liberalized enforcement environment as to submit to federal background screening under the Gang of Eight bill.
While our piecemeal enforcement at the borders is a national scandal, those who enter the country illegally but overstay their visas account for some 40 percent of illegals. The Gang of Eight bill would require the executive to establish a system of visa controls to address this problem. The problem is this: Congress passed a law requiring that very thing 17 years ago, and has on multiple occasions restated its demand that the law be enforced. So far, nothing doing. That pattern is characteristic of our immigration system in toto: a very fine collection of laws enforced in the most desultory fashion by a government beholden to business interests and ethnic lobbies hostile to the law as written. A government that was serious about restoring its credibility on the issue would at the very least get control of the border and fulfill Congress’s 17-year-old visa-control mandate without attaching a destructive amnesty to the package. Likewise, Janet Napolitano’s proposal for using improved passport technology to track those who come and go across our borders is a very fine idea on its own, no amnesty necessary. But the amnesty is the centerpiece here: To the bill’s proponents, everything else is an afterthought.
The Boston attack is far from irrelevant to the immigration debate. From the failures of law enforcement to the failures of assimilation, the case of the Tsarnaev brothers points both to what is wrong with our existing immigration system and what is wrong with the Gang of Eight’s plan to reform it.

Democrat Is Dodging Questions About Her Possible Ties To Gosnell, Will Media Investigate?

Democrat Is Dodging Questions About Her Possible Ties To Gosnell, Will Media Investigate?

Matt Vespa's picture
As we've noted, the liberal media generally and the Big Three broadcast networks in particular have studiously avoided paying attention to the Kermit Gosnell murder trial. The Philadelphia abortionist is charged with murdering newborns who survived abortion attempts and were born alive.
But aside from the criminal aspect of the case, there's other angle in the Gosnell matter that is of interest to political observers of the 2014 election cycle, particularly the Pennsylvania governor's race. One of the Democrats vying for the nomination to challenge Gov. Tom Corbett (R) is Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-Pa.), who operated an abortion clinic from 1975-1988. J.D. Mullane of the Bucks County Courier News has some great, incisive questions for Schwartz connected to the Gosnell matter, particularly whether Schwartz ever referred any patients to Gosnell. Her clinic stopped performing abortions in 1984, but continued with issuing referrals to other clinics. Schwartz has been curiously silent on the issue, and larger media outlets seem to be silent as well, failing to ask her if she ever referred women to Gosnell, for example.
While the 2014 election is still quite a ways off, the Democratic Party primary race is well under way – and rather heated. Schwartz hasn't been helped by going on the record saying, “I do think the respect for life is something that we were built on certainly in our country and that means – obviously different things to different people.” Schwartz uttered that gem last December on C-SPAN's Washington Journal in the aftermath of Sandy Hook.
She made the statement in answering a caller, who had observed that, “Roe v. Wade took away the right to life. We encourage the culture of death by giving money to Planned Parenthood - they kill more people. Now it’s terrible what happened in Connecticut but unborn persons killed with the support of taxpayer money – these are persons too.” Schwartz didn’t see the connection.
Fred Lucas and Eric Schiener of our sister site CNSNews.com noted that:
Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion-provider in the nation. According to its own fact sheets, Planned Parenthood performed 985,731 abortions between 2008 and 2010 – 329,445 in 2010 alone. Planned Parenthood also receives taxpayer money every year and got $487.4 million in 2009-2010.
A Congressional Research Service report published on Aug. 28 said that the federal government gives Planned Parenthood about $66 million per year in Title X “family planning” grants. The law prohibits recipients from using Title X money for abortion except in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother. However, Planned Parenthood and other organizations that receive federal subsidies under Title X can take the federal money and do abortions at the same time as long use other dollars—not the dollars they got from the federal government--to pay for an actual abortion.
 So, through Schwartz, is there a Planned Parenthood connection to Gosnell? Did they make referrals to his clinic? If so, when did they do it, and when did they know, if at all, that his abortion center was fraught with numerous health code violations? A gubernatorial candidate, with possible ties to Gosnell, is something worth investigating, and salient to the voters of Pennsylvania.
Mullane should be commended for asking the congresswoman these questions. Journalists in Pennsylvania, particularly in the major media markets of Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, should take notice.

Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/matt-vespa/2013/04/16/democrat-dodging-questions-about-her-possible-ties-gosnell-will-media-in#1#ixzz2RVOwu7oT


Make No Mistake, It Was Jihad

Make No Mistake, It Was Jihad

Let's hope the administration gets over its reluctance to recognize attacks on the U.S. for what they are.
If your concern about the threat posed by the Tsarnaev brothers is limited to assuring that they will never be in a position to repeat their grisly acts, rest easy.
The elder, Tamerlan—apparently named for the 14th-century Muslim conqueror famous for building pyramids of his victims' skulls to commemorate his triumphs over infidels—is dead. The younger, Dzhokhar, will stand trial when his wounds heal, in a proceeding where the most likely uncertainty will be the penalty. No doubt there will be some legal swordplay over his interrogation by the FBI's High-Value Interrogation Group without receiving Miranda warnings. But the only downside for the government in that duel is that his statements may not be used against him at trial. This is not much of a risk when you consider the other available evidence, including photo images of him at the scene of the bombings and his own reported confession to the victim whose car he helped hijack during last week's terror in Boston.
But if your concern is over the larger threat that inheres in who the Tsarnaev brothers were and are, what they did, and what they represent, then worry—a lot.
For starters, you can worry about how the High-Value Interrogation Group, or HIG, will do its work. That unit was finally put in place by the FBI after so-called underwear bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to blow up the airplane in which he was traveling as it flew over Detroit on Christmas Day in 2009 and was advised of his Miranda rights. The CIA interrogation program that might have handled the interview had by then been dismantled by President Obama.
Zuma Press
In the White House Situation Room on April 19, President Obama meets with his national-security team, including FBI Director Robert Mueller to his immediate left.
At the behest of such Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated groups as the Council on American Islamic Relations and the Islamic Society of North America, and other self-proclaimed spokesmen for American Muslims, the FBI has bowdlerized its training materials to exclude references to militant Islamism. Does this delicacy infect the FBI's interrogation group as well?
Will we see another performance like the Army's after-action report following Maj. Nidal Hasan's rampage at Fort Hood in November 2009, preceded by his shout "allahu akhbar"—a report that spoke nothing of militant Islam but referred to the incident as "workplace violence"? If tone is set at the top, recall that the Army chief of staff at the time said the most tragic result of Fort Hood would be if it interfered with the Army's diversity program.
Presumably the investigation into the Boston terror attack will include inquiry into not only the immediate circumstances of the crimes but also who funded Tamerlan Tsarnaev's months-long sojourn abroad in 2012 and his comfortable life style. Did he have a support network? What training did he, and perhaps his younger brother, receive in the use of weapons? Where did the elder of the two learn to make the suicide vest he reportedly wore? The investigation should include as well a deep dive into Tamerlan's radicalization, the Islamist references in the brothers' social media communications, and the jihadist websites they visited.
Will the investigation probe as well the FBI's own questioning of Tamerlan two years ago at the behest of an unspecified foreign government, presumably Russia, over his involvement with jihadist websites and other activities? Tamerlan Tsarnaev is the fifth person since 9/11 who has participated in terror attacks after questioning by the FBI. He was preceded by Nidal Hasan; drone casualty Anwar al Awlaki; Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad (born Carlos Leon Bledsoe), who murdered an Army recruit in Little Rock in June 2009; and David Coleman Headley, who provided intelligence to the perpetrators of the Mumbai massacre in 2008. That doesn't count Abdulmutallab, who was the subject of warnings to the CIA that he was a potential terrorist.
If the intelligence yielded by the FBI's investigation is of value, will that value be compromised when this trial is held, as it almost certainly will be, in a civilian court? Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's lawyers, as they have every right to do, will seek to discover that intelligence and use it to fashion a case in mitigation if nothing else, to show that his late brother was the dominant conspirator who had access to resources and people.
There is also cause for concern in that this was obviously a suicide operation—not in the direct way of a bomber who kills all his victims and himself at the same time by blowing himself up, but in the way of someone who conducts a spree, holding the stage for as long as possible, before he is cut down in a blaze of what he believes is glory. Here, think Mumbai.
Until now, it has been widely accepted in law-enforcement circles that such an attack in the U.S. was less likely because of the difficulty that organizers would have in marshaling the spiritual support to keep the would-be suicide focused on the task. That analysis went out the window when the Tsarnaevs followed up the bombing of the marathon by murdering a police officer in his car—an act certain to precipitate the violent confrontation that followed.
It has been apparent that with al Qaeda unable to mount elaborate attacks like the one it carried out on 9/11, other Islamists have stepped in with smaller and less intricate crimes, but crimes that are nonetheless meant to send a terrorist message. These include Faisal Shahzad, who failed to detonate a device in Times Square in 2010, and would-be subway bomber Najibullah Zazi and his confederates.
Is this, as former CIA Director Michael Hayden put it, the new normal?
There is also cause for concern in the president's reluctance, soon after the Boston bombing, even to use the "t" word—terrorism—and in his vague musing on Friday about some unspecified agenda of the perpetrators, when by then there was no mystery: the agenda was jihad.
For five years we have heard, principally from those who wield executive power, of a claimed need to make fundamental changes in this country, to change the world's—particularly the Muslim world's—perception of us, to press "reset" buttons. We have heard not a word from those sources suggesting any need to understand and confront a totalitarian ideology that has existed since at least the founding of the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1920s.
The ideology has regarded the United States as its principal adversary since the late 1940s, when a Brotherhood principal, Sayid Qutb, visited this country and was aghast at what he saw as its decadence. The first World Trade Center bombing, in 1993, al Qaeda attacks on American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, on the USS Cole in 2000, the 9/11 attacks, and those in the dozen years since—all were fueled by Islamist hatred for the U.S. and its values.
There are Muslim organizations in this country, such as the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, headed by Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, that speak out bravely against that totalitarian ideology. They receive no shout-out at presidential speeches; no outreach is extended to them.
One of the Tsarnaev brothers is dead; the other might as well be. But if that is the limit of our concern, there will be others.
Mr. Mukasey served as attorney general of the United States from 2007 to 2009 and as a U.S. district judge for the Southern District of New York from 1988 to 2006.


Friday, April 26, 2013

For Holder, amnesty is a civil right

For Holder, amnesty is a civil right

by Paul Mirengoff in Holder Justice Department, Immigration

Earlier this week, Eric Holder had this to say to the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund:
Creating a pathway to earned citizenship for the 11 million unauthorized immigrants in this country is essential. The way we treat our friends and neighbors who are undocumented–by creating a mechanism for them to earn citizenship and move out of the shadows — transcends the issue of immigration status. This is a matter of civil and human rights.
(emphasis added)
I understand that “civil rights” rhetoric extends far and wide these days. But by what reckoning does a civil right exist to obtain American citizenship by virtue of being in the United States illegally? As Mark Krikorian says:
To equate amnesty for breaking the nation’s immigration laws with civil rights betrays an incoherent and ahistorical understanding of the civil-rights movement. Law-abiding black citizens of the United States were not seeking exemption from U.S. law; they were seeking the application of such laws in the same manner they were applied to whites.
Assume that the Schumer-Rubio (et al.) immigration bill passes. What else will be deemed a “civil right” 20 years from now when, say, 20 million former illegal immigrants have been enfranchised?
And, in the shorter term, what kind of border enforcement can we expect from those for whom law enforcement and sovereignty concerns have morphed into a civil and human rights imperative.


The Deportation Lie--The Obama administration cooks the enforcement books

The Deportation Lie
The Obama administration cooks the enforcement books.

It is one of the Obama administration’s favorite talking points on immigration: It has been deporting illegal immigrants in record numbers. That bolsters its credentials on enforcement and supports the argument that, now that we’ve gotten tough on the border, it is time to enact comprehensive immigration reform.


Obama Doesn’t Care about Dead Children--Reforming commitment laws for the mentally ill could prevent mass killings

Obama Doesn’t Care about Dead Children
Reforming commitment laws for the mentally ill could prevent mass killings.

Mona Charen

Obama doesn’t care about dead children. He’s indifferent to the suffering of their parents. There isn’t a single coherent argument on his side of the case. He lies about the issue. It’s pure politics.
That’s the way the dispute would be presented if Obama’s opponents deployed the kind of demagogic language he slips on like comfortable loafers. Sounds harsh, doesn’t it — possibly even racist? Funny how touchy everyone is about the way Obama is criticized but how indifferent most are to his low accusations. His opponents are always guilty of bad faith, whereas he is concerned about preventing children from being mowed down by crazed gunmen.

Except he isn’t. The gun-control measures the president worked so hard to pass and that the Senate has voted down would have done nothing to prevent Newtown and would do nothing to prevent the next Newtown. Adam Lanza did not obtain his guns through the gun-show loophole. More rigorous background checks would not have prevented most of the mass shootings we’ve suffered in the past 15 years.
Nor does the president’s outrage at the Senate’s failure to pass his trivial reform really hold up as a genuine expression of policy disappointment. As Allahpundit has observed, the president responded very differently to the Aurora, Colo., shootings than to Newtown. Could it be because Newtown was more heinous? It’s possible. It could also be because Aurora happened before the election, and Obama chose not to embrace a potentially unpopular issue like gun control while his name was on the ballot. Yet, when four Democrats from pro-gun states declined to place their own reelections in jeopardy, Obama in effect called them “shameful.”
That the president is sincerely angry that he lost a political battle after making lots of speeches (he and his staff may be the only ones left who believe he possesses a golden tongue) and parading Newtown parents before the cameras is beyond dispute. What must sting most acutely, though, is not that he lost; it’s that Democrats participated in his defeat, undercutting the preferred narrative about Republican obstruction that he might have flogged until November 2014.
If the president were sincere in his concern for the children of Newtown and other victims of mass violence, he might have responded with more than a knee-jerk resort to de minimus gun control (which, for what it’s worth, I don’t per se oppose). Guns have always been widely available in America, yet mass shootings in public places are a relatively new phenomenon. A sincere reformer would have given more than lip service to the problem of the mentally ill.
The mentally ill commit an estimated 10 percent of the homicides in America, but they commit a much larger share of mass killings.
Unlike gun policy, America’s handling of the severely mentally ill has changed profoundly over the course of the past 50 years. The deinstitutionalization movement emptied the mental hospitals. Even for the few psychiatric beds that remain, laws severely limiting involuntary commitment make it nearly impossible to get treatment for those who refuse (and often their illness itself inclines them to believe that doctors are part of a conspiracy against them). HIPAA and other federal privacy regulations make it impossible for family members of the mentally ill above age 18 to exchange information with treating physicians. And Medicaid and SSDI have enabled the mentally ill to subsist without contact with families or communities who might get them the help they need.
As Dr. E. Fuller Torrey of the Treatment Advocacy Center has noted, Assisted Outpatient Treatment, which ties government benefits to compliance with treatment, has shown success in reducing hospital admissions, criminal behavior, and homelessness among the mentally ill.
Family members of the mentally ill report the frustration of being unable to get treatment for their relatives even when they have threatened violence. Reform of civil-commitment laws to permit 72-hour emergency interventions, even over the objections of the patient, would correct this. Our excessive libertarianism when it comes to mental-health treatment serves neither the mentally ill themselves nor the larger society.
If Obama were sincere about Newtown, he would consider these overdue reforms. But, apparently, he doesn’t care about dead children.
Mona Charen is a nationally syndicated columnist. © 2013 Creators Syndicate, Inc.


Terror never left America’s shores

Terror never left America’s shores

‘People shouldn’t jump to conclusions before we have all the facts,” President Obama said after Tuesday’s attack in Boston. He’s right, of course: We don’t yet know if the terrorists were Islamists, a new version of Tim McVeigh or something else.
Yet Islamists remain the chief terror threat on these shores: Terror didn’t return to America at the Boston Marathon, because terror never left. There have been more anti-US attacks and abortive attacks (not including Iraq and Afghanistan) in the last four years than in the previous seven years, after 9/11.
This statistic isn’t widely cited at government briefings, in the main news media nor on most college campuses, because those elites would like to pretend that the terror problem ended with Osama bin Laden.
That includes the president and his top aides, who’ve spent the better part of the last two years relying on a mistaken conclusion.
They’ve pretended that there really was no terror problem, but only an al Qaeda problem, and that that problem was solved because bin Laden’s death was a death blow for terror.
They were wrong then, and they’re wrong now, dead wrong.
Terrorists often send us reminders just when we think we have beaten them. Israel has seen this happen several times in its fight against Islamist terror. So did Britain in its experiences with both Irish and Islamist terror. And now the United States is learning that fighting terror is not a sprint but a marathon.
Karmi Gillon, then head of Israel’s Shin Bet security agency, bragged about killing the main terror planner of Hamas in 1996. As he patted himself on the back, Hamas launched suicide bombings that convulsed Israel for several more years until the suicide bombers were uprooted in a massive Israeli military operation in 2002.
Israel has pioneered targeted killings, drones and other high-tech anti-terror methods, but it has also learned you can’t defeat terror just with high tech. There is no substitute for the tough and painstaking collection of intelligence and grinding work on the ground.
Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder and others in the administration have done their best to inhibit the collection of such intelligence, while they have at the same time launched probes or proceedings aimed at counter-terror warriors in the CIA and the top units of the US military.
America was kept safe by intelligence gathered earlier; data gathered from pre-Obama interrogations also helped lead to bin Laden himself. Yet those efforts have ended, and US intelligence has been coasting.
Obama & Co. also minimized the role of Islamist terror in previous attacks on the United States, such as Fort Hood and the Christmas bombing in Detroit.
The first step in fighting terror is to realize that there is a terror problem that requires a major national effort, but some of our top “experts” on terror — especially in the Obama administration — demure.
John Brennan, now Obama’s CIA head, wrote in a 2008 paper, “US national security would be best served if Washington publicly acknowledged” that Iran and Hezbollah had moved away from terror. He claimed the West could woo moderates inside Iran’s regime and Hezbollah with sweet talk and some incentives. Events have proved him wrong.
Iran and Hezbollah are trying hard to move advanced weapons and chemical arms from the collapsing state of Syria into Lebanon. Iran also sped up long-range missile development, its bomb program and arms transfers to South America. Since 2008, it has planned or executed terror attacks in Asia, Africa and even the United States.
Obama is right not to jump to conclusions about the Boston attack, but he’d be wise to realize he was wrong in his previous conclusions about terror. As the 9/11 Commission observed, fighting terror means using imagination, not pretense.
Michael Widlanski is the author of “Battle for Our Minds: Western Elites and the Terror Threat.” He was strategic affairs advisor in Israel’s Ministry of Public Security.


Thursday, April 25, 2013

Immigration Sophistry

Immigration Sophistry

Why is earning citizenship some special reason for ignoring the illegality of others?
Most laws are meant to stop people from doing something, and to penalize those who disregard those laws. More generally, laws are meant to protect the society from the law breakers.
But our immigration laws are different. Here the whole focus is on the “plight” of those who have broken the laws, and on what can be done to lift the stigma and ease the pressures they feel, so that they can “come out of the shadows” and “normalize” their lives.
Merely using the word “illegal” to describe their breaking the law is considered to be a sign of mean-spiritedness, if not racism. The Associated Press refuses to let their reporters refer to people who sneaked across the border into this country, in violation of American immigration laws, as “illegal immigrants.”
On the other hand, if an ordinary American citizen breaks a law, no one cares if he has to live in fear for years — “in the shadows,” as it were— worrying that his illegal act will be discovered and punished. No one bothers to come up with euphemisms to keep from calling what he did illegal.
No cities announce that they will provide “sanctuary,” so that American shoplifters, or even jay-walkers, will be protected from the law. But, in some places, illegal immigrants are treated almost as if they were in a witness protection program.
What is even more remarkable about this special treatment is that you are not supposed to think about it as special treatment. When a new immigration law is proposed that simply overlooks violations of the old law, that is not supposed to be called“amnesty” — even though the word “amnesty” has the same root as“amnesia.” It is all about forgetting.
Why is it not supposed to be called “amnesty”? Because illegal immigrants must “earn” their citizenship. But if an ordinary American citizen gets a traffic ticket, the law is not going to just forget about it, no matter what good deeds he does afterwards.
People who come here perfectly legally have to earn their citizenship. Why is earning citizenship some special reason for ignoring the illegality of others?
Impressive feats of sophistry have become the norm in discussions of illegal immigration.
For example, we are told that there is no way that the government can find all the people who are in the country illegally and deport them. Does anyone imagine that the government can find all the embezzlers, drunk drivers or bank robbers in the country? And does anyone think that this is a reason why the government should stop trying to enforce laws against embezzlement, drunk driving or bank robbery? Or let embezzlers, drunk drivers and bank robbers “come out of the shadows” and “normalize” their lives?
Even if the government does not lift a finger to find illegal immigrants, many will come to the attention of law enforcement officials because of their violations of other laws. But, even then, there is no assurance that they will be deported — and certainly not in “sanctuary” cities.
Why are there immigration laws in the first place? For the benefit of the American people — not for the benefit of people in other countries who want to come here.
But political and media elites treat the American people as if they are the problem — a problem to be circumvented with sophistry and pious promises about border security that have not been kept in all these years since the last amnesty, decades ago.
Making an irreversible decision to add millions of people — and their dissimilar cultures — permanently to the American body politic is something that should take months of careful examination and discussion, both inside and outside of Congress. But it is likely to get less time than you would take to decide whether to buy a house, or perhaps even a car.
What should American immigration policy be? It doesn’t matter what any of us think that policy should be if the borders are not secure, because whoever wants to come across that border will come across anyway, in defiance of whatever the policy might be.
If legal benefits are conferred on illegal immigrants before the border is secured, we may as well give up any pretense that we have an immigration policy, because benefits conferred are never going to be taken back, no matter how porous the border remains.


1984 + 29--As Orwell knew, taking over the culture starts with corrupting the language

1984 + 29
As Orwell knew, taking over the culture starts with corrupting the language

Victor Davis Hanson
Imagine if, during the campaign of 2008, someone had written the following: “If Barack Obama is elected president, then each year from now on the federal budget will be a trillion dollars in the red. He will pile up in two terms more debt than all previous presidents combined. Interest rates will stay at near zero; 7.6 percent unemployment will be proof of progress in creating jobs. Record use of food stamps, unemployment, and disability insurance will be hallmarks of recovery. The government will take over health care, and the costs will skyrocket. During Obama’s second term, ammunition will vanish from America’s store shelves in panic buying. Gay marriage will become uncontroversial. Women will be eligible for infantry combat. The only question about amnesty for illegal aliens will be when, not if, it is enacted. States will begin legalizing marijuana.” Obviously, such a conspiracist would have been dismissed as an unhinged nut.
You may object that Obama himself has hardly been responsible for all these radical transformations. True, but he helped to create, in brilliant fashion, a “hope and change,” quasi-revolutionary climate — the political cover, if you will, for the media, the universities, federal judges, state legislatures, and Congress to reinvent American popular culture and tradition in a manner rarely if ever seen in the past.

How, then, did the Obama team do that?
First were the necessary changes in language. In the Obama age, as in Orwell’s 1984, the natural meanings of words had to change. See the third book of Thucydides’ history for the details.
Running up serial trillion-dollar deficits was not profligacy, but rather making “investments” for “the children.” Irresponsible borrowing became “stimulus.” Indeed, “trillion” — not a frequently used part of most people’s vocabulary before 2009 — suddenly replaced “billion” as a familiar fiscal numerical adjective. A takeover of health care that would spike premiums and ration services, devices, and procedures was aptly named the “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.”
“Assault weapons” superseded “semi-automatic rifles,” even as “semi-automatic” and “automatic” were no longer distinct adjectives. The obvious purpose of rapid-fire weapons was to kill innocent children, not to protect your household from intruders, to shoot fast-moving game, or to practice a sport at a shooting range, much less to remind the government, in Second Amendment fashion, that the populace was autonomous and vigilant.
“Illegal alien” disappeared in favor of the inexact “undocumented immigrant” or “undocumented worker,” even though most illegal aliens never had proper documents of any sort, and sizable minorities of them were not working. The key was to convince the American public that millions of people had inadvertently wandered over the poorly demarcated border, all in search of work. They sort of lost track of both their bearings and their legal documents in the process. “Comprehensive immigration reform” superseded “amnesty,” as if the new proposed reforms focused mostly on hordes of brilliant Ph.D.s from the Czech Republic, queuing up to acquire legal authorization to work in Silicon Valley — rather than some 11 million or so Latin Americans who entered the country unlawfully, mostly without capital, English, or a high-school diploma.
“Homosexual” became a derogatory substitute for the proper term “gay,” and male homosexuality was redefined almost as an asexual act — a fun or “gay” Platonic experience rather than one connected with any particular sort of sexual congress.
“Global warming” begat “climate change,” which eventually begat “climate chaos,” once tornadoes, hurricanes, and tsunamis had to be enlisted in the good fight — given that there was no proof of rising temperatures in the last decade, and even the specter of melting polar ice caps, rising seas, and drowning polar bears had not proved enough to scare the public into banning coal and enacting cap-and-trade.

After the language changed, obfuscation followed, designed to wear down the opposition through a bewildering array of incomprehensible regulations that led to an attention overload and confusion of theories with facts. Nancy Pelosi astutely gauged the pulse of an exhausted public that wanted the drawn-out debate over Obamacare just to be done with and go away, when she promised that we could find out what was in the vast, 2,400-page Obamacare bill as soon as it was made law. Likewise, the new “comprehensive immigration reform” bill is reputed to be over 1,500 pages. As many will read that monstrosity as have read the Obamacare document. The “hockey stick” and tree rings from “11,000 years ago” proved global warming in a way that no one could quite fathom until private correspondence was leaked to the public giving the proper academic context. No one quite knows what the advent of gay marriage will entail, once the idea of marriage as the exclusivity of a single man, joined with a single woman, to promote procreation has ended. But the theoretical possibilities of bold new unions, both sincere and cynical, are now as endless as they are taboo to discuss publicly.

After language changed and facts were buried beneath bureaucratic avalanches, debate became almost un-American, either silenced or relegated to caricature. Legitimate worries about rising health-insurance premiums and restricted care translated into being against the “young” and “vulnerable.” Object to infringements on the Second Amendment, and Vice President Joe Biden (who, as so often in the mudslinging, was wheeled out to demonize opponents) will charge that one must suffer from some near-sexual fetish to want an “assault weapon” in one’s hands, a thrill like “driving a Ferrari.” (Most Americans, apparently unlike Biden, have no idea of what driving a Ferrari is like.) Biden instead advised the illegal act of blasting a shotgun into the air to scare off intruders. Concerns about the dangers of a nationwide gun registry were tantamount to membership in “the black-helicopter crowd.”
In the debate over illegal immigration, one paradigm was the DREAM Act. The new gospel was that 11 million illegal aliens were denied their futures as neurosurgeons and aeronautical engineers simply by lack of access to the appropriate university. No one was allowed to talk of an “un-DREAM Act” — to point out that for all the hard-working, crime-free, and long-residing illegal aliens, there must be at least some who were on public assistance, had criminal records, and or entered the country only recently in hopes of receiving amnesty. All illegal aliens were desirable newcomers; none were undesirable. Breaking the law, and cutting in front of others who did not, was noble, whereas drawing attention to those who did was ignoble. The illegal-alien debate was framed as involving those who wished to allow José López to finish his M.D., against racists who could not tolerate the idea that people from south of the border were outpacing them to the pinnacles of American success.

To ponder whether females could meet, without adjustments, the brutal physical requirements of Special Forces training was tantamount to being anti-woman. There could be no real debate over gay marriage. America was instead to have happily evolved from the Neanderthal 1990s, when homophobia had made such moral improvement impossible. That earlier public had been obsessed with illegitimate and improper concerns that particular types of sexual congress might lead to new worries over the spread of HIV or the recent transformation of hepatitis into a common sexually transmitted disease.

Anecdote, the age-old enemy of logic, now reigns supreme and trumps induction — as if the exception is always proof of the rule, as if the public will always forsake reason for emotion. Forget the statistics on Obamacare — my Uncle Joe was denied coverage after he lost his job. The economy is getting better, because my friend Will was offered a job today. Why enforce federal immigration law, when there is no nicer window washer than Herlinda, who comes to my house every Tuesday? It hailed in June here; therefore the world must be experiencing climate change. I would never shoot an AR-15, and therefore there is no need for anyone else to. My nephew is gay, and he’s a great guy; therefore gay marriage is great too. Sally yesterday lifted heavier weights than did three guys in the gym: Presto, female soldiers can do anything that male soldiers can.

Finally, to make the once controversial the new convention, demonization and character assassination were essential. Opposing trillion-dollar deficits meant that you were a fat cat who didn’t build your own business and didn’t know when you had made enough money, a suspect 1-percenter who did not pay “your fair share,” and who junketed to Las Vegas or lopped off patients’ limbs for profit. To oppose Obamacare meant that you wished the vulnerable like Sandra Fluke to have to choose between eating and having access to exorbitantly priced condoms. Or perhaps you wished those with lymphoma to go without medical treatment.

Wariness about Congress’s rush-to-judgment haste to infringe on the Second Amendment was proof that you were callous toward the parents of the Sandy Hook victims, with veritable blood on your hands in a repeat of the Gabby Giffords tragedy. Gun owners were now to be divided into the good Joe Biden and John Kerry types who, outfitted in proper L. L. Bean attire, each year ceremoniously fired off a few rounds at skeet from their Italian shotguns — and the overweight and sunburned clingers who, in places like southern Illinois and rural Pennsylvania, slaughtered deer for the hell of it with sinister black machine guns, when they weren’t indulging in militia play-acting in bandoliers and camouflage.
America may have had the most liberal immigration policy, both legal and illegal, in the world, which inordinately favored illegal entrants from Latin America. But nonetheless the desire to enforce federal legislation was tantamount to being a “nativist” and “racist” who, as “an old angry white guy” could not “get over” “the new demography” — incorrect behavior by “enemies” that warranted a vow from the president to “punish” them. Those who opposed gay marriage but were willing to accept civil unions were “homophobes” who had set out to demonize the children and grandchildren of us all.

* * *

What are we to make of this creeping brave new world?

The scary part, at least for now, is not the ends so much as the means used to achieve them. The reason that Orwell, a man of the Left, made his farm animals and lost urban souls the victims of tyrannical left-wing megalomaniacs was his sense that the far Left, much more so than the far Right, could insidiously distort reality and destroy free expression. The right-wing dictator is typically an identifiable thug who transparently stifles free speech to benefit a small coterie of aristocrats and insiders. In contrast, the left-wing dictator is always a misunderstood reformer who was forced by counterrevolutionaries to break a few eggs in order to make the collective omelet. Think of the reaction to drones, renditions, and Guantanamo under Bush compared to that under Obama. After all, there are no Pinochet T-shirts on campus to rival the romantic depiction of Che — a psychopath in service to a Cuban autocracy that came to power killing far more than did Pinochet in Chile. We are long conditioned to airbrush the word “socialism” out of Hitler’s “National Socialism” and must only with care remark that the collectivist Mao was the greatest mass murderer in the history of civilization. Our popular culture is currently engaged in canonizing bombers and murderers from the 1960s campuses, but not the equally violent anti-abortion activists who likewise sometimes took the law into their own hands in service to their own purported sense of the greater good.

We are in revolutionary times, but of the French rather than the American sort. The popular effort is not to preserve liberty from an all-encompassing government, but rather to have an all-powerful state impose an egalitarianism of result — and increasingly by any means necessary.

NRO contributor Victor Davis Hanson is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. His The Savior Generals will appear in May from Bloomsbury Books.