Countering False Images

My previous post highlighted some of my ongoing concerns with President Trump. In the spirit of balance, let me offer some positives today because even though my concerns will probably never disappear, it’s always important to counter the false images being presented by Democrats and their minions in the media.

For instance, take that presumed travel ban on Muslims. I critiqued the administration for a bungled announcement about it that gave opponents what they needed to play the bigot card. The substance of that order, though, was widely mischaracterized. Let’s look at what it did and didn’t do.

But a little thing like facts is not what interests the ideologically blind.

I’m also, at this point, hopeful that Trump has a better understanding of what needs to be done to combat Islamic extremism. He, at least, unlike Obama, seems to realize it’s a genuine threat:

I didn’t comment earlier on his address to Congress. I have my concerns about his domestic plans when it comes to the amount of money he wants to spend on things that even the Democrats like. But what’s more interesting is that those Democrats are now exhibiting furrowed brows over domestic spending. When has that ever happened before?

It couldn’t be that it’s all just political, could it?

After Trump’s speech to Congress, the Democrats were ready with their response. I thought this particular cartoon was able to dispel the fog of vacuous verbiage and get to the heart of the matter:

Hypocrisy is never admirable, regardless of political party or particular politician.

Islam in Obamaworld

I touched briefly yesterday on the administration’s decision to close American embassies for one week due to the rising threat level, at least according to the latest intelligence. I also questioned how effective that move could be, given that the terrorists only had to wait until those embassies reopen to carry out whatever deeds they have planned. If this was conceived as a policy for dealing with terrorism, it seems to be rather short-sighted. What will it accomplish overall? Of course, after the fiasco at Benghazi, I guess I should be thankful that the safety of Americans working at the embassies was taken into consideration for a change. Yet, one might ask, as former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton so infamously did, “What difference does it make?”

First of all, it’s hard to have a coherent policy toward terror when one refuses to recognize that a War on Terror exists. President Obama, rhetorically, has all but concluded it is over. In what make-believe world does he reside? His words ring rather hollow, and his actions indicate the opposite of what he says:

On the Run

He doesn’t exactly inspire confidence:

 Show the Flag

He has gone out of his way to deny that Muslim extremism is a problem. Take the trial just now starting for the Ft. Hood jihadist who killed thirteen in his rampage. Our government refuses to call it a terrorist act. It continues to use the euphemism “workplace violence” to describe what occurred. By avoiding the obvious, this doesn’t even allow the families of those who were shot to receive benefits; neither can anyone killed or injured in the attack be awarded any medals for their actions in trying to stop it. Frankly, this is a farce of the highest order.

In Obamaworld, Muslims made major contributions to the history of the United States. I’m an American historian; I have yet to see those contributions. How many Muslims signed the Declaration of Independence? Were there any who suffered with Washington at Valley Forge? What Islamic principles are embodied in the Constitution? Which Muslim leaders of business and industry built the American economy? Fought for this country in WWII? The list of questions could be endless. The answer to each question would be identical.

The Muslim religion as a whole, and the radicals who take it to its logical conclusion, have nothing but contempt for the Christian faith upon which this nation was based originally. Further, their goal is to exterminate all they consider to be infidels. It doesn’t really matter what we do; it’s just who we are that sets them off. Even if we pulled out of every Muslim-dominated country in the world, they would not be satisfied:

Hate Us

It’s well past time to face reality. This is a war. It would be nice to have a commander in chief who realizes it.

On Flags, Arrogance, & Threats

In one of my posts last week detailing the case against Obama’s reelection, I wrote about his character. The most blatant trait I believe he possesses is an ego far outside the norm. I’m certainly not the first person to comment on the perceived arrogance of the man. In some cases, his followers have taken devotion to him to an extraordinary level. A couple of months ago, some of his campaign headquarters were flying this flag:

That raised the ire of many who saw it as a desecration of the American flag. There was enough blowback that this emblem soon disappeared. Then just this last week, the following showed up on Obama’s website for admirers to purchase:

Someone apparently didn’t learn the lesson. It also has quietly been removed. But it was there long enough for at least one cartoonist to draw attention to it:

I recall nearly four years ago after Obama won the election, whenever he would speak publicly, he would stand behind a podium the likes of which had never been seen before in American politics:

That also was unprecedented. He seems to enjoy the status of the office, if not the actual responsibilities. His spokespersons say he didn’t refuse a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, but the word from Israel is just the opposite. It’s a shame to have to say I accept the word of a country other than my own in the controversy, but this administration has been anything but forthright on a number of issues. Obfuscation has become more of an art than ever. We are told Obama has avoided his daily intelligence briefings consistently, even in the aftermath of the Libyan attacks and the murder of our ambassador. Clint Eastwood’s empty chair is seeing a lot of play lately:

Just yesterday, the president was in New York City as world leaders were gathering for talks at the UN. He sent Secretary of State Clinton to meet with world leaders, but he had more pressing matters on his mind:

Yes, trolling for votes among his legion of fans was far more important. The one substantive interview he did submit to was on 60 Minutes where he, without the aid of his teleprompter, stirred up controversy once again by calling the rising tide of unrest and protests in the Muslim world simply bumps in the road, and referring to Netanyahu’s urgings to take the Iranian nuclear threat seriously as “noise” that he intends to “block out.”

Does he believe at all that there is a legitimate radical Muslim threat against the United States?

For the sake of our security, he had better start believing it. For the sake of the future of our nation, we need to put someone in the Oval Office who is a true friend of Israel and recognizes the threat. There is one out there.

May it come to pass.

The Case Against Barack Obama: The Summary & a Challenge

All week I’ve detailed the reasons why Barack Obama should not remain as president. Today, let me summarize and talk about the electoral challenge before us. As I said in the first post, one must begin at the beginning—a person’s worldview. His supporters usually try to skip over this, but it is the essence of the man. It consists of one part false Christianity, one part Marxism, and one part anti-Western civilization. The combination is lethal for the country because all of his policy initiatives flow from this worldview.

Another toxic ingredient is the character he has developed over time, which is dominated by a spirit of privilege, self-righteousness, and outright arrogance. He is always right; opponents have no valid points to make. Add to that a kind of disinterest in the daily details of his responsibilities and a penchant for spending time with the trendy/celebrity culture, and you have someone who can’t be trusted with the highest office in the land.

On the economic front, nearly four years of his policies have left us weak as a nation, with unemployment over 8% during his entire term. This hasn’t occurred since the Great Depression. The question Ronald Reagan posed after four years of Jimmy Carter is being raised once again: are you better off than you were four years ago? Incredibly, yet somehow unsurprisingly, the Obama campaign is claiming we are better off. Well, perhaps some segments of the population can say that:

Small businesses, in particular, have been hard hit. The uncertainty and proposed taxes on them depress hiring. Obama doesn’t understand the free market; what’s worse, he doesn’t even like it. Obamacare has already begun to drag us down further. So what’s his prescription to those who are looking for relief?

Obamacare also has become the front line of attack on religious liberty. In the guise of helping people, religious organizations are forced to provide abortifacients. As I noted in the post two days ago, lawsuits over this are springing up, and they should be. This is a fundamental abrogation of the First Amendment. It’s also part of his overall disdain for basic Biblical morality, showcased by his abortion-on-demand belief and his promotion of homosexuality. The only “sin” he seems to want to recognize is the “sin” of bigotry, defined as holding to traditional moral standards.

There’s so much more on the domestic side that I didn’t cover, but everything else he has supported, from green energy to Fast and Furious, also emanates from his aberrant worldview.

The War on Terror, from Obama’s anti-colonial, anti-Western lens, is over. He as much as declared it to be when he took office. The term itself was replaced by “overseas contingency operations.” He sympathizes with what he believes are the oppressed of the earth, not the least of whom are Muslims, while simultaneously undermining the security of Israel. Only yesterday did the first crack appear in the administration’s blatant lie about the attack on the Libyan consulate that resulted in the murder of our ambassador. Before yesterday, the cause, supposedly, was the trailer for an anti-Muslim film that could be seen on YouTube. Now, according to Jay Carney, it is “self-evident” that it was a planned, coordinated terrorist action. Why the change? Simply put, the lie couldn’t be sustained; too much evidence to the contrary was making it ridiculous. It was an attempt to shield Obama from political damage. It didn’t work. Now, will the media call it the lie that it was?

Here’s the challenge: can the electorate awaken from its stupor and see clearly enough to reverse the direction in which America is headed? My biggest concern is illustrated perfectly in this political cartoon:

Will voters allow their emotions to control their rational thinking? It’s very easy to become cynical about the intelligence of the American electorate:

Frankly, our future as a nation might be more secure if fewer people vote. I know that sounds like a heretical statement if you believe in representative government, but if the majority of the electorate are unprincipled and reject a Biblical worldview, that majority will lead us into deeper spiritual darkness by their votes. I want to believe we aren’t that far gone yet, but I wish I could be more certain. This election will probably provide the answer. If we keep Barack Obama in office, we may have sealed our fate.

May God have mercy on us and preserve us as a people. May He give us another chance for national redemption.

Egypt, Libya, & the Obama Response

I’m not going to try to report on all the details of the attacks in Egypt and Libya; plenty of news sources have in-depth coverage of what happened. I will summarize, however, before offering some thoughts on the events.

In Cairo, Egypt, a mob scaled the wall of the American embassy, tore down the American flag, and replaced it with an Al Qaeda flag. As of this writing, mobs continue to threaten to break into the embassy. The Muslim Brotherhood president of Egypt has not condemned the actions of the mob; instead, he has only made a statement condemning an anti-Muslim film produced in the U.S., thereby justifying the mob’s presence.

In Libya, things are even worse. The ambassador, Chris Stevens, and at least five other Americans, have been brutally murdered. Stevens’s body was even dragged through the streets. Sources say the consulate where he was residing had no American Marine protection. They were relying solely on Libyan security forces. Another report says those very forces were the source of information that led the attackers to the ambassador. Ostensibly, the Libyan government is not behind the attack; we’re told they are helping to track down those responsible. I would like to believe that. Color me skeptical.

These were not spontaneous outbursts of emotion. They were well-coordinated to occur on the anniversary of 9/11, and judging by some of the chanting in Egypt, were meant as revenge against the killing of Osama bin Laden. The hatred that erupted on 9/11/2001 has not dissipated in the intervening eleven years. If anything, the hatred has multiplied. Anyone who acts as if the War on Terror is over is seriously deluded.

Much controversy was spawned over the initial public statement made by officials at the Cairo embassy. This is the message that went out to the world from the Obama administration’s embassy personnel:

The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims—as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. . . . Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.

Did you notice anything missing in this message? How about condemnation of the actions of the mob? Instead, our government is more concerned about hurting the feelings of the mob. This is political correctness gone wild. Apparently, there was a major tussle within the administration to change the statement, but it took about sixteen hours to do so. Why? Well, when you have a president who favors what he considers the “oppressed” of the world, and then staffs embassies with like-minded individuals, it will take a while for those in charge to figure out what image they really want to project to the nation. I guess they finally realized this was not going to go over very well, and the initial statement eventually was repudiated.

You might recall that Barack Obama, in his book The Audacity of Hope, famously [or perhaps infamously] stated, “I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.” Mr. President, what about when the Muslims are the cause of an ugly political wind?

Mitt Romney rightly criticized the Cairo statement as an unwarranted apology. What was his reward? Immediate accusations of politicizing the event. When he held a press conference, the reporters converged on what they called his “gaffe.” They repeatedly asked him if he now regretted making the statement. To his credit, he held his ground. And why shouldn’t he? There is now audio that reveals the reporters colluded ahead of time to ensure that he would be challenged to back down. The collusion was blatant. Hmm, I wonder if they’ve chosen a side in this election season?

As for the president, he made a Rose Garden comment on the situation, then assured he wouldn’t be put in the same position as Romney by declining to answer any questions—a common ploy for him. After all, he’s a busy guy. He had to catch his ride on Air Force One for a campaign swing to Las Vegas.

Does that sicken anyone else as much as it does me?

We’re in deep trouble. Change must come this November or we may never recover from this presidency.

Sure, Why Not Another Terrorist State?

I’ve been concentrating on electoral politics lately. There have been other stories that deserve attention as well. One of those is the Palestinian effort to be recognized as a legitimate nation at the U.N. This comes to the forefront of what the media has dubbed the “Arab Spring.” The narrative goes something like this: despotic rulers are being displaced by freedom-loving moderates throughout the Arab world, so we should rejoice over this encouraging development.

Unfortunately, I believe this is closer to the reality:

Those freedom-loving crowds are the same ones attacking the Israeli embassy in Egypt and calling for death for all non-Muslims. The centerpiece of this Middle Eastern religious and cultural clash is the promotion of a Palestinian state. That’s why Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas made his trek to the U.N. last week to press for statehood. He gave a speech to the General Assembly, arguing the merits of this move:

The problem is that both factions of Palestinians—the Palestine Liberation Organization [PLO] and Hamas—have, as their philosophical foundation, the destruction of the nation of Israel. The most fanatical of them seek to kill all Jews. Of course, Abbas didn’t say any such thing in his address, but the undercurrent is present nevertheless.

No, he didn’t wear the t-shirt, but that doesn’t negate the underlying premise.

The Obama administration’s response, so far, has been in line with American policy in all the decades since Israel’s birth in 1948. We’re told we will continue to stand with Israel by vetoing, in the Security Council, any attempt to recognize a Palestinian state. But please forgive me if I still have some concerns about that. We have a president who is so sympathetic to the Palestinian cause—remember his “church” back in Chicago that put statements from Hamas in its Sunday bulletins?—that I’m not sure he will remain steadfast with that veto.

The only real hope that he will keep his word is that he needs the Jewish vote again in 2012.

Demography vs. Delusion

The title of today’s post is the subtitle to the second chapter of Mark Steyn’s America Alone: The End of the World As We Know It. The main title is “Going … Going … Gone.” What’s he talking about? It’s an extension of his first chapter where he wrote of declining birth rates in all of Europe and the increasing Islamization of European culture.

In the second chapter, Steyn focuses on the apparent death-wish of certain European states. In Russia, for instance, 70% of pregnancies end in abortion. Even more distressing is that when the pro-life film called The Silent Scream, which depicts the graphic effects of abortion on the unborn child, was screened in Russia, it had the opposite effect of what was intended:

Instead of the baby’s pain, Russian viewers noticed the clean hospitals, the state-of-the-art technology, the briskly professional doctors and nurses. Women marveled: “Wouldn’t it be great to have an abortion in the West?” After seven decades of Communism, the physical barrenness is little more than a symptom of the spiritual barrenness.

Steyn has hit on the real issue here: at root, this is a spiritual problem; it merely manifests in a desire for abortions and societal suicide.

He then turns to Spain, which had stood with America in the War on Terror after 9/11. Then came March 11, 2004. A series of train bombings in Madrid killed more than 200 people. All evidence pointed to Islamic extremists. Three days later, the ruling party that had been America’s ally, and which was expected to win the election scheduled for that day, was turned out of office, replaced by the Socialist Workers’ Party, which campaigned on the platform of rejecting any role in a War on Terror. As Steyn notes, in his own unique style:

Having invited people to choose between a strong horse and a weak horse, even Osama bin Laden might have been surprised to see the Spanish opt to make their general election an exercise in mass self-gelding. Within seventy-two hours of the carnage, voters sent a tough message to the terrorists: “We apologize for catching your eye.” …

In the three days between the slaughter and the vote, it was widely reported that the atrocity had been designed to influence the election. In allowing it to do so, the Spanish knowingly made polling day a victory for appeasement and dishonored their own dead.

Meanwhile, pressure continues to mount to cave over Muslim demands throughout Europe: all female teachers in Linz, Austria, whether Muslim or not, should wear headscarves in class, Muslim activists declare; Holocaust Day in Britain should be abolished because it showcases an “alleged” Jewish holocaust while ignoring the Israeli “holocaust” of the Palestinians. “In Seville, King Ferdinand III is no longer patron saint of the annual fiesta because his splendid record in fighting for Spanish independence from the Moors was felt to be insensitive to Muslims.” Britain’s patron saint, St. George, is considered too militaristic and offensive to Muslims, so the Church of England is considering removing him from his exalted status.

How will this all end? Steyn speculates:

In a few years, as millions of Muslim teenagers are entering its voting booths, some European countries will not be living formally under sharia, but—as have parts of Nigeria—they will have reached an accommodation with their radicalized Islamic compatriots, who like many intolerant types are expert at exploiting the “tolerance” of pluralistic societies.

This is where pluralism leads. Unlike the concept of liberty of conscience, upon which America is based historically, pluralism has no foundation in absolute truth, so when a challenge comes along, such as Muslim extremism, societies based on pluralism have no spiritual resources to resist the onslaught.

I hope Steyn is wrong in his prediction, but the only thing that will forestall it is a rise in the Biblical worldview. Can that even happen today in Europe? It’s an open question, to be sure.