Thursday, January 31, 2008

Obama The Real Liberal, Hunter The Real Conservative

Liberal and Conservative Scores of the Presidential Candidates

Lifted with hat tip from The Dakota Voice Blog:
I knew Obama was liberal, but I don't think I would have believed it until I'd seen it with my own eyes.

National Journal says Barak Obama was the #1 most liberal senator in 2007, while Hillary Clinton came in at a modest 16th. Hillary did improve her liberal score from 2006-2007, coming down from 32nd to 16th. I wonder if Obama will dig Hillary about her low score at the Democratic debate tonight?

The article didn't seem to have a link to the actual 2007 ranking itself, but there was a link to report through 2007.

For 2006, of the congressmen running on the GOP side, it lists Duncan Hunter as most conservative (why wasn't the GOP supporting a real conservative?) at a rating of 84.0, followed by Tom Tancredo at 73.3, then Sam Brownback at 70.3, John McCain lagging far behind at 56.7, and Ron Paul taking up the rear at 39.0.

It was his libertarian views that brought Paul down so low. I appreciate Ron Paul's respect for the Constitution, but libertarianism doesn't equal conservatism, especially with his dangerous position on Iraq and the war on terrorism.

If you look at the lifetime conservative rankings up to 2006, current front runner McCain improves to 71.8, but still considerably below the 82.5 lifetime conservative rating of Duncan Hunter.

McCain's conservative score is interesting to watch. It drops from the 80s in the 1980s to dip a little in most of the 90s, but then around 1998-1999-2000 (when he became a media darling), he dips down into the 60s and 50s and keeps dropping.

McCain's a conservative, huh? Go pull my other leg, now.


Border Fence Update

Thursday, 31 January 2008


PHOENIX, AZ —The Minuteman Civil Defense Corps (MCDC) calls upon our Washington lawmakers to follow Congressman Duncan Hunter’s leadership by reinstating the funding for construction of the double-layered border fence along our Southern border with Mexico that Congress stripped from the budget of the Homeland Security Department last month. MCDC praises Congressman Hunter’s introduction of H.R. 5124 and demands President Bush set the national policy priorities in his last State of the Union that will compel Congress to implement the 2008 Minuteman Border Security Agenda, in order to protect America from the worsening illegal alien invasion—before Congress takes action on any other policy issues this year.

“Congressman Hunter’s legislation is an important government initiative toward achieving our mission to reduce the number of illegal aliens who, undetected and undeterred, enter this country daily. We hope that it will serve as a motivating reminder to President Bush that he once made the same commitment to the American people,” states Chris Simcox, President of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps. “Citizens do not want to live in a country where their government refuses to uphold its constitutional duties to protect its legal inhabitants from an invasion of intruders who seek to exploit our freedom, prosperity and social services as well as undermine our sovereignty and autonomy.”

The 2008 Minuteman Border Security Agenda includes:

1) Restoring the funding of $3 Billion dollars in funding towards the construction of the border fence Congress stripped from the Homeland Security Department’s budget.

2) Posting the National Guard back on the Southern border until the physical border fence is completed and national border security is firmly established.

3) Building all 700 miles of the physical border fence before January 2009.

4) Strengthening the e-verification system through passage of the SAVE ACT (HR 4088)

5) Punishing states who issue driver’s licenses to illegal aliens through passage of S.2334

6) Abolishing the North American Union and the Superhighway through passage of H.Con.Res. 40.

Simcox continues, “In times of economic difficulties, violent crime typically increases. We are seeing heightened ruthlessness among the cartel drug and human traffickers—and the murderous violence directed against our brave U.S. Border Patrol agents out in the field has just cost us the life of yet another fine young lawman. How many more American law officers will have to die because of Washington, D.C.’s fecklessness”?

Minutemen citizen activists will ensure that the President as well as Senators and Congressmen in all states and districts hear from them regarding the 2008 Minuteman Border Security Agenda, which strongly opposes the advocacy of the open borders lobby and the Mexican government, who endorse violations of our American rule of law and the sovereignty of our nation. Members of the border security movement have been demanding our Washington lawmakers take action on these vital issues for several years, and we again remind our elected officials that failure to positively deliver on this agenda will have a negative impact on their re-election prospects this November.

Simcox concludes, “On Monday night, President Bush should demand the completion of the physical border fence before he leaves office, to do his duty to his country, and to attain a national defense legacy for himself with these delivered promises and positive accomplishments. We will be relentless in reminding the Bush administration, House Speaker Pelosi and the U.S. Senate that millions of voters want to make the Minuteman Border Security Agenda a reality in 2008, and are prepared to punish Congress and both major political parties, should they fail to act responsibly in defense of these United States of America.”

Just 4 Months Later, John Force is Back !!

14-Time Champ Makes Dramatic Return to Cockpit of Castrol GTX Ford Mustang

CHANDLER, Ariz. – For John Force, drag racing’s most prolific winner, and four months of intensive rehabilitation following the most serious crash of his pro career culminated Monday in an unexpected and spectacular 4.782 second, 327.51 mile per hour sprint down a resurfaced quarter mile at Firebird Raceway.

It was the quickest run recorded during a National Time Trials test session extended by Sunday’s rain and it all but ended speculation about Force’s ability to rally from injuries that included a compound fracture of the left ankle, broken bones in both hands, broken toes and ligament and tendon damage.

With many his peers looking on, the 58-year-old icon fired the engine on a race car on which daughter Ashley’s Castrol GTX Ford Mustang body had been mounted and, on his first effort since last Sept. 23, successfully executed a burnout and launch before shutting off at half track.

That done, the 125-time tour winner came back hours later and laid down the aforementioned 4.782 that moved him to the top of the performance list ahead of veteran Ron Capps, whose 4.786 in the NAPA Dodge had been the previous best.

Walking with a noticeable limp, Force passed the first phase of his comeback test on Saturday when he was able to get in and out of the cockpit and exit through the roof hatch, thereby satisfying NHRA safety concerns.

“I had to get in my firesuit and do the drill for them,” Force said, “but I knew it wasn’t going to be a problem because I already had done it (climbed in an out) at the shop. Like I said, ‘it ain’t pretty, but I can do it.’”

For Force, it was important that he was the first member of his team to take one of the new generation, Murf McKinney-built chassis down the track. He was followed by Robert Hight and Mike Neff. Daughter Ashley will make her first runs on Tuesday.

“I’ve been down the road more than anybody out here,” he said. “If there was a problem, I wanted to be the one to deal with it before I sent Robert, Ashley and Mike Neff out there.

“We didn’t know what we had (with the new car),” Force said. “We thought it would be good, but we didn’t know. We still have a lot of work to do but that (4.78) was a good boost for this team. That’ll give ‘em motivation. Everybody’s worked so hard since the end of the season and to run down through there like that was something.”

Force, who missed the last three races of the season and finished seventh in points, his worst showing since 1984, will return to competition Feb. 7-10 at the 48th annual CARQUEST Winternationals at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona (Calif.).

“I wouldn’t be here without the doctors in Dallas (at Baylor University Medical Center) who put me back together and without Robert Ortmayer, my physical therapist in California, who’s kept me motivated. He understood why I needed to get back in the car and what I had to do to make it happen.”

Neither of the JFR Mustangs made it to the starting line during the first two days of testing because of mechanical issues. They were denied again Sunday by rain.

Hight, No. 2 in the world the last two seasons, and rookie Neff, both aborted their first attempts Monday at half track, as planned. They’ll try to follow Force’s lead on Tuesday.

“Right now, it looks like we’ll try to test here through Wednesday,” Force said. “We need to make some laps. We’re behind right now but we’re scrambling to catch up.”

After the death of team driver Eric Medlen in a testing accident last March and after his own crash in September, Force scrapped eight cars and started over with a controversial new design that hadn’t been tested competitively before Monday.

“That’s the first lap on these cars,” Force said. “That’s a credit to Austin Coil, Bernie Fedderly, John Medlen, Ford and Murf McKinney – to get these cars done in three months was unbelievable.”

Video of Crash Sept 23 2007

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Algore-Kennedy Wing of the New Republican Party

Rudy to drop out and join ...

John Maverick McCain

of the Ted Kennedy Wing of the Republican Party

And Joe Lieberman*
(*algore endorsement sold separately) of the Algore Wing of the Independent Party.

on the Grumpier'er Old Men Tour...
"Compromising Conservative Ideals"
on the Campaign Trail.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

McCain/Lieberman- Exit Stage Left?

Is this the new direction of the Republican Party... 2008 campaign motto - "Exit Stage Left"?

One is the former Vice Presidential candidate for the Democrat party in 2000 and the other one merely considered being the Vice Presidential candidate for the Democrat party in 2004.

C'mon Oklahoma you're smarter than to fall for this pair... right?

ADDED- 1/30/08 Imagine if we had the reverse happening. Let's say we had pulled the Democrat party so far to the right that Zell Miller and Joe Lieberman were the leading candidates and Hillary, Obama and the rest were all trying to prove they are each more like JFK (JF Kennedy not JF Kerry) than the other.

Conservative voters don't seem to be actually looking for a true Reagan conservative candidate to vote for, otherwise they wouldn't even be considering John McCain and his Kennedy wing of the Republican party. If you believe the polls and these primaries, that is.

JC Watts: Straight Talk, Great Oklahoman, Great American

Dems opposition reduced to whimpering (J.C. Watts)
The Pahrump Valley Times ^ | January 25, 2008 | J.C. Watts

Posted on 01/28/2008 11:01:57 AM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

It seems like only yesterday. In 1990, I first entered politics in Oklahoma. I ran for a seat on the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, the agency tasked with regulating public utilities and our oil and gas industry.

The nine-year incumbent against whom I was running gave me an issue that was like a gift from Santa Claus. One of our major utilities had overcharged ratepayers to the tune of almost $30 million, and he had voted to let the offending public utility keep the windfall to upgrade its infrastructure. I felt the ratepayers deserved their money back, whether it was $50 or 50 cents.

The voters of Oklahoma apparently agreed with me, and I won by nine points in a three-way race. I felt then that it was the right position, and I never regretted my stand.

In early 1991, President George H.W. Bush had a 91 percent approval rating a year before the 1992 campaign season got underway. It seemed nothing could stop America or our leader. Indeed, Americans were pleased with his handling of the Persian Gulf war.

One year later though, Americans concluded he had dropped the ball on the economy, and a little-known governor from Arkansas built a national campaign around four simple words: "It's the economy, stupid!" The point is, in campaigns, there are issues you hang your hat on to win or lose.

Fast forward 16 years. We now are in another, less popular, war in Iraq. After the 2006 elections, the Democrats gained majorities in the Senate and House, and were riding a wave of self-confidence and assuredness that they would gain the White House due to the Iraq war.

The stars were aligned for the Democrats to accomplish this trifecta. The media was trumpeting our failures in Iraq on a daily basis. It was the topic du jour of television talking heads. Conventional wisdom had Democrats trouncing Republicans on Election Day over this one issue.

Sally Field epitomized Hollywood's political position when she accepted an Emmy and laced her speech with a profane anti-war screed which was thankfully bleeped by a sensible censor. Cindy Sheehan was seeking a platform and a political career, riding the wave of discontent.

Joe Lieberman saw his party establishment turn against him and he had to run for Senate re-election as an independent over his support of our troops and administration war policy. He and others were urging more troops - not fewer.

Some Democratic House and Senate members were proclaiming daily that the United States should pull out of Iraq immediately. Democrat candidates for president are still offering their plans to withdraw troops, albeit not with the same fervor and intensity as they showed just six months ago.

The opposition has been reduced to whimpering in their opposition today. Why?

That's easy. They all misjudged where so many Americans are on the Iraq war. Most Americans are not opposed to Iraq as a matter of values, but as a matter of execution. The surge of troops that then-Secretary of State Colin Powell, Sen. John McCain and others called for three years ago finally happened about seven months ago, and real progress is now being made. The left has been neutered.

There continues to be a growing sense of normalcy in Iraq, and success is finally coming into better focus. Civilian deaths are down over 80 percent from a year ago. Eighty percent of Baghdad's neighborhoods are secure today, compared with 10 percent a year ago.

The Democrats and the accommodating media don't want you to hear the following:

- U.S. and Iraqi forces now basically own the streets.

- Anbar Province, which was a hellhole of terrorists, was turned over to Iraqis a few weeks ago.

- People who fled Iraq over the past two years to avoid sectarian and terrorist violence are coming back to work and going to worship.

- Last month, thousands of Christians went to worship in church on Christmas.

- The Iraq Parliament even passed a pension law - something President Bush rightly observed our own Congress hasn't been able to do!

There is clearly more work to be done. The gains are not yet etched in stone, but much success has been seen. Enough, in fact, to motivate the Democrats to displace Iraq as their primary issue and start to focus more on the economy.

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Gen. David Petraeus have done an admirable job over the last year. President Bush has shown resolve in his decision to fight for freedom, just as anyone with right on his side should.

Time magazine missed it a few weeks ago. As far as I'm concerned, the United States military should have been named Time's People of the Year for 2007.


J.C. Watts is chairman of J.C. Watts Companies, a business consulting group. He is former chairman of the Republican Conference of the U.S. House, where he served as an Oklahoma representative from 1995 to 2002. His e-mail address is


Ancient Democrat Party Platform Template Uncovered

This is too funny.
In 1965, a rock band was formed called 'Ten Years After', which they considered to be the birth of Rock and Roll in 1955. They released the song "I'd Love To Change The World" in 1971 during the Viet Nam War. Everytime you hear "I'd Love to Change the World", think of the Democrat Party and then remember the next line... "but I don't know what to do", (and since they can't come to a decision)...."so I'll leave it up to you".
Over 35 years later and liberals on the left are still singing the same old tune. They know what they don't like, but have no clue what to do about it except promises to fix 'it' by raising taxes, growing the government and raising taxes.
35 years later and they haven't solved a single thing according to the democrat candidates who are singing the same old tune. I remember it well and it is a catchy tune for sure. Alvin Lee was considered one of the best guitar players of the time.

Id Love To Change The World Lyrics

The original song on youtube, with lyrics performed and Written by Alvin Lee and Ten Years After.

How funny, times don't really change sometimes and neither do politicians.


Monday, January 28, 2008


You can pretty much assume that when a politician is talking about change, he's talking about the change in your pocket and how he can get it.

Hillary can't change her skirt-chasing husband, much less politics in Washington, or the healthcare industry, or end all wars, stop poverty etc.

Obama changed from a Muslim educated at a Madrassa into a "Christian" and from a typical liberal democrat into the candidate claiming to be against typical liberal democrats while being endorsed by Ted Kennedy.

Examples of change... Obama is referring to Ronald Reagan as a leader of change and Hillary Clinton is trying to re-write and change history, meanwhile Teddy Kennedy tries to change JKF into Barrack Hussein Osama rama-Obama bama rama. (hicup)
I can't wait till Bill Clinton accuses the Kennedy/Obama bunch of trying to steal his thunder, Bill already being the first black President and all.

What kind of change are the democrats calling for?
Socialism more or less... mostly more.
Combined, the democrat candidates have proposed more spending than was done in all the past wars and more with no way to pay for it... except by using the change in your pocket.

The only plan they have for creating jobs is for everyone to work for the government of course.

From now on, I suggest every time someone uses the word "change", it costs 'em $1.
We can fund the entire government on that alone.
In the mean time, "Brother can you spare a dime?"

Red S Tater New technology Same Common Sense

Old computer blew up, crashed, gave up the ghost, quit, was destroyed by a trojan virus, was destroyed by the vast leftwing conspiracy, was destroyed by terrorist hackers, it was Bush's fault got too old.

Within like 24hrs, my brother had me loaded in his car headed to the electronics store to get me a new computer. He works for a living like everyone else. He doesn't have piles of cash lying around, but there we were buying me a computer, no argument allowed... he is my big brother after all.
No words can express the thanks ... I love ya' brother. You know who you are!
New HP computer fast, powerful, vista, big clear picture, freekin' awesome.

Moonbats beware.
He's back before they knew he was gone.



Saturday, January 26, 2008

Partisan Divide Good or Bad?

The so-called "war" between this blog vs several liberal blogs has been called bad for the country and an example of what is wrong with politics today.
I submit that the differences and debate over those differences is what makes this country great and politics worthwhile.

The left wants to be able to say virtually anything and go unchallenged.
I invite those who disagree with me to challenge me on it.

Politics throughout our history has had passionate and heated differences and I believe that is a good thing. If we all agree on the issues and how the country should be run, we would live under a one-party system which may explain why those on the left continually call for just that.

Socialism and/or Communism don't allow for such differences and critique.
Freedom and Liberty provide and promote expression of differences in a democracy and in our Republic. It is the very foundation of our country. Those on the left seek to condemn those on the right for the very things those on the left do on a daily basis and then try to hide behind calling for non-partisanship.

All this chatter about 'civil discourse' while at the same time slamming those on the right is nothing more than hypocritical whining by those on the left seeking to end debate and silence their opponents. If not for passioned difference and heated debate... would the civil rights movement ever been a movement at all?

If not for passionate difference and fighting for what we believe in, we might still be under British rule... or more than likely German or Japanese rule.

To post your opinions on the internet and expect no rebuttal or opposing opinion is childish at best and certainly unrealistic. If you wish to not be challenged on your comments.... don't comment. If you wish for your ideas and ideals to not be subject to review and rebuttal, don't express your ideas and ideals on the internet for everyone to see.

I criticize Republicans when they are not being Republicans. I have said that George Bush is wrong about amnesty, wrong about our unfair trade agreements, that he is not a conservative in the Reagan mold and not an advocate for true conservative ideals. He was the right President at the right time however. Calling him a liar while ignoring the fact that virtually every democrat agreed with him and said exactly the same thing about Iraq and WMD is itself a big fat lie.

Someone tell me how ignoring lies by the left who falsely claim everyone on the right are liars is good for the country.
Someone tell me how not fighting for what you believe in and not fighting against what you oppose is good for the country.
Someone tell me how conceding conservative ideas to socialists and communists is good for the country.
Communism would provide exactly what those on the left are calling for, no debate, no heated difference, no differences. There are many other connections to the left and communism, calling for an end to heated debate is merely one example.
I will fight against that until my last breath on this planet and also fight for their right to disagree with me.
You want me to stop calling you moonbats?
Okay, would you prefer I refer to you as socialists or communists?


"America, is like a healthy body and its resistance is threefold: its patriotism, its morality, and its spiritual life. If we can undermine these three areas, America will collapse from within." ... Joseph Stalin

Friday, January 25, 2008

FREE or Low Cost Healthcare In OKC Area

Several months ago as a public service, I posted a list (below) of healthcare facilities in the OKC area that provide FREE or low cost medical care to anyone in need.
I also submitted this list at several Oklahoma Blogger sites in their comments section. Not one liberal blogger published the list however including Sooner Thought, Kittenstomper and others.
I again call on all Oklahoma Bloggers to publish this list or provide a link to the list here at Red Stater.

There is a link to the list over in the right sidebar margin just click on the big blue "H" Hospital sign. If you know of anyone who needs medical care and think they have nowhere to go, please refer them to this list or leave a comment in my comments area.

The next time you hear someone say that our healthcare system doesn't take care of the poor and those in need without insurance, send them here. They will be taken care of immediately.

Free or Low-Cost Health Services
in the Oklahoma City Metro

We (OU Medical Center) are just one of many organizations that provide some free or low-cost healthcare services in our community. Here is a list of some of the other organizations that serve the medically needy in the Metro area. This list is provided for your convenience and does not constitute a recommendation of any specific organization or provider. Remember to ALWAYS call first to see if you, or your family member, can qualify and when you can be seen. All of these providers follow business rules regarding who qualifies for their services.

The following may provide one or more services, including: Children’s Services, Dental Care, Eye Care & Glasses, General Care, Medication Assistance, Mental Health Services, or Women’s Services.

Download Printable PDF Version of List

Baptist Mission
(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
2125 Exchange Ave, Oklahoma City | 235-6162

Charity Eye Clinic
(eye care & glasses)
701 NW 8th, Oklahoma City | 236-5212

(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
3815 N Santa Fe, Suite 122, Oklahoma City | 524-8100

Community Action Agency
(eye care & glasses)
1900 NW 10th, Oklahoma City | 232-0199

Community Vision Clinic
(eye care & glasses)
3840 N Lincoln, Oklahoma City | 473-7430

County Pharmacy
(medication assistance)
7401 NE 23rd, Oklahoma City | 713-1893

Good Shepherd Ministries
(children’s services, dental care, general care, women’s services)
222 NW 12th, Oklahoma City | 232-8631

Guild of St. George
(medication assistance)
117 NW 7th, Oklahoma City | 235-3436

Healing Hands Health Care
(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
411 NW 11th, Oklahoma City | 272-0476

Health For Friends
(children’s services, dental care, eye care & glasses, general care, women’s services)
317 E Himes St, Norman | 329-4161

Hope Center Health Clinic
(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
7 N Broadway, Edmond | 348-4680

Hope Community Service
(mental health services)
Oklahoma City | 632-1900

Lion’s Eye Bank
(eye care & glasses)
4123 NW 10th, Oklahoma City | 557-1393 or 947-6540 for glasses

Little Flower Clinic
(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
11th and N. Walker, Oklahoma City | 235-7055

Mary Mahoney Memorial Health Center
(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
12716 NE 36th, Oklahoma City | 769-3301

Medication Assist
(medication assistance)
711 Stanton L Young, #700, Oklahoma City | 228-3200

Ministries of Jesus
(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
3456 S Boulevard, Edmond | 340-7400

Neighborhood Service Organization
(dental care)
614 NE 4th, Oklahoma City | 236-0413

North Care Center – Adults
(mental health services)
1140 N Hudson, Oklahoma City | 272-0660

North Care Center – Children
(mental health services)
NW 50th & Meridian, Oklahoma City | 858-2700

Oklahoma City County Health Department
(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
921 NE 23rd, Oklahoma City | 427-8651

Oklahoma City County Health Department West
(children’s services, women’s services)
4330 NW 10th, Oklahoma City | 419-4150

Oklahoma Community Health Service
(children’s services, dental care, general care, women’s services)
1025 Straka Terrace, Oklahoma City | 632-6688

Olivet Baptist Church
(children’s services, dental care, eye care & glasses, general care, women’s services)
1201 NW 10th, Oklahoma City | 951-2645

Project Woman
(mammograms only - women’s services)
Central Oklahoma | 604-4642

Rx for Oklahoma
(medication assistance)
1125 E Main Street, Norman | 701-8216

St. Charles Catholic Church
(children’s services, general care, women’s services)
5024 N Grove, Oklahoma City | 789-2595

University of Oklahoma School of Dentistry
(dental care)
1201 Stonewall Ave, Oklahoma City | 271-6056

Variety Health Center- Downtown
(prenatal care, family planning)
420 NW 6th, Oklahoma City | 235-6466

Variety Health Center- Lafayette
( pediatrics)
500 SW 44th Oklahoma City /235-6466

Variety Health Center- Mid Del
(prenatal, children’s services, women’s services)
3851 Tinker Diagonal, Del City | 677-1129

Pretty impressive list isn't it?
-red stater

Labels: , , ,

FBI: U.S. Invasion Surprised Iraq

FBI interrogator Tells CBS 60 Minutes that Saddam misunderestimated George W Bush.
Lesson? Never ever play Texas hold-'em with a Texan and bluff.
So much for the Bush lied crowd... new medicine below for BDS.

Invasion Surprised Iraq
Saddam Hussein initially didn't think the U.S. would invade Iraq to destroy weapons of mass destruction, so he kept the fact that he had none a secret to prevent an Iranian invasion he believed could happen. The Iraqi dictator revealed this thinking to George Piro, the FBI agent assigned to interrogate him after his capture.

Piro, in his first television interview, relays this and other revelations to 60 Minutes correspondent Scott Pelley this Sunday, Jan. 27, at 7 p.m. ET/PT.

Piro spent almost seven months debriefing Saddam in a plan based on winning his confidence by convincing him that Piro was an important envoy who answered to President Bush. This and being Saddam's sole provider of items like writing materials and toiletries made the toppled Iraqi president open up to Piro, a Lebanese-American and one of the few FBI agents who spoke Arabic.

"He told me he initially miscalculated... President Bush’s intentions. He thought the United States would retaliate with the same type of attack as we did in 1998...a four-day aerial attack," says Piro. "He survived that one and he was willing to accept that type of attack." "He didn't believe the U.S. would invade?" asks Pelley, "No, not initially," answers Piro.

Once the invasion was certain, says Piro, Saddam asked his generals if they could hold the invaders for two weeks. "And at that point, it would go into what he called the secret war," Piro tells Pelley. But Piro isn’t convinced that the insurgency was Saddam's plan. "Well, he would like to take credit for the insurgency," says Piro.

Saddam still wouldn't admit he had no weapons of mass destruction, even when it was obvious there would be military action against him because of the perception he did. Because, says Piro, "For him, it was critical that he was seen as still the strong, defiant Saddam. He thought that [faking having the weapons] would prevent the Iranians from reinvading Iraq," he tells Pelley.

He also intended and had the wherewithal to restart the weapons program. "Saddam] still had the engineers. The folks that he needed to reconstitute his program are still there," says Piro. "He wanted to pursue all of WMD…to reconstitute his entire WMD program." This included chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, Piro says.

It took nine months to finally capture Saddam, and he bragged that he changed his routine and security to elude capture. "What he wanted to really illustrate is…how he was able to outsmart us," says Piro. "He told me he changed…the way he traveled. He got rid of his normal vehicles. He got rid of the protective detail that he traveled with, really just to change his signature."


Now, this public service message for sufferers of BDS...

Labels: ,

'Maverick' and 'Conservative' Aren't Synonyms

Many conservatives have said Sen. John McCain is not conservative enough to suit them. Some of McCain's defenders have not only disagreed but have impugned his critics, hypocritically blaming them for divisiveness.

But intramural bickering isn't the issue. What's important is that conservatives have an intellectually honest and open discussion about GOP presidential contenders.

It's disappointing to watch good conservatives demean themselves by trying to present McCain as something he's not. No matter how much they spin, they can't fool conservatives familiar with McCain's record. McCain's detractors are not the ones having to stretch and massage the facts in order to turn McCain -- overnight -- into a Reagan conservative.

McCain is not only not conservative enough; he has also has built a reputation as a maverick by stabbing his party in the back -- not in furtherance of conservative principles but by betraying them. McCain delights in sticking it to his colleagues while winning accolades from the mainstream liberal media.

Former senator Rick Santorum, whose conservative credentials are beyond question, said, "I don't agree with (McCain) on hardly any issues." Santorum told radio host Mark Levin, "I just have to tell you, as a leader, as someone who had to put these coalitions together, it was always hard and we very rarely on domestic policy had any help from the senator from Arizona." Santorum said McCain has been damaging to conservative causes and would be no friend to conservatives in the White House.

McCain's defenders -- in the McCainian spirit of chilling political speech -- forbid us from criticizing him because he is a war hero. That's irresponsible nonsense. Voters and analysts have an obligation to assess McCain's suitability for the presidency. To consider and verbalize the negatives is not to demean his service or sacrifice.

We can recognize and honor McCain's indescribably grueling POW experiences without taking the leap of arguing they automatically qualify him as an ideal commander in chief. His qualifications should be evaluated on the merits, not on sentimental appeals to his service.

Understandably, I suppose, pundits often glibly assert that one of McCain's many advantages is his character -- a character that was molded by the hardships he endured. McCain's captivity undeniably involved more character building than anything most of us will ever experience. But to say he is a rugged, battle-tested hero does not mean he is incapable of prevarication, opportunism, demagoguery or other mischief. Nor does it immunize him from scrutiny concerning the credible claim that he lacks the temperament to be president.

I respectfully reject that McCain's honorable and sacrificial character-building experiences or his self-description as a "straight talker" place his veracity above question. I remember him sidling up to the media by falsely claiming George Bush didn't level with the American people about how long the Iraq war could take. I remember him blaming dirty campaign tricks on Bush in South Carolina in 2000, when investigations revealed there was no evidence Bush was behind it. I remember him joining liberals in slandering the truth-telling Swift Boat veterans as "dishonest and dishonorable." I remember his disingenuous derision of the across-the-board Bush tax cuts as being only for the rich. I witnessed him changing his position on immigration to shore up support in South Carolina, then after that primary arrogantly denying to Sean Hannity that he'd flip-flopped. People can assess for themselves whether McCain is always straight, but hopefully they'll base their decision on the evidence and not his hero status.

I seriously doubt McCain will win the GOP nomination, precisely because of his infidelity to conservative principles. Consider:

He crusades against Guantanamo, favors constitutional rights for terrorists but opposes tough interrogation techniques, was the ringleader of the Gang of 14, which legitimized the filibustering of judicial nominees, and is the godfather of political speech-suppressing and Democrat-favoring campaign-finance reform legislation.

He has displayed contempt for conservative evangelicals, opposed Bush's pro-growth tax cuts for reasons other than he says (spending), has engaged in other class-warfare rhetoric like demonizing oil and drug companies, co-sponsored the abominable McCain-Kennedy illegal immigrant-forgiveness/open-borders/Social Security zapping bill, and even voted for the Specter amendment, which could have conferred consulting rights on Mexico concerning the erection of a southern border fence.

He sold out on global warming, opportunistically opposed drilling in ANWR, favors re-importation of drugs from Canada, and promoted the McCain-Kennedy-Edwards patients bill of rights. Even his pro-life credentials are not as pristine as we're told: He opposes reversal of Roe vs. Wade and sided with anti-political speech zealots in filing an amicus brief against Wisconsin Right to Life.

Vote for McCain if you wish, but please don't insult conservatives by suggesting he's one of us.

Mr. Limbaugh is a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Bankrupt: The Moral and Intellectual Bankruptcy of Today's Democratic Party, Absolute Power and Persecution

Labels: , , ,

Sooner Thought Wrong (as usual)

There seems to be a never-ending supply of bad information coming out of a local bloggers computer. Apparently his google button doesn't work. While proclaiming his hero "Jihad Joe" Biden to be the next Vice President he can't resist taking a poke at Duncan Hunter without doing any research first.
He also continually touts his "civil discourse" which he demonstrates here...
"They sure as shit aren't writing pieces like this about the Duncan Hunters and Tom Tancredos of the world...(note: emphasis in this article mine)--Editor

(with apologies for that 4letter word appearing on this blog)
Maybe I can help him out here, since my google button seems to work okay.

From National Review online Dec 12 2007
"Can we all agree that Duncan Hunter is going to be Secretary of Defense in the next Republican administration?"

From Californians for Romney... Their "Dream Team"
"A Vietnam veteran and Army Ranger, Duncan Hunter has served on the House Armed Services Committee for the last 27 years. He is also the author of the Secure Fence act, and has a son who recently returned from a couple of tours of Iraq and is U.S. Marine. No more stupid questions from the media to the Defense Secretary about "would you send your son to Fallajuh?" They would already know the answer.

If Romney is smart he will put together the best conservatives have to offer for his administration, after all as Ronald Reagan said, "Surround yourself with the best people you can find, delegate authority, and don't interfere as long as the policy you've decided upon is being carried out." Duncan Hunter fits the bill.

From Vice
Why Duncan Hunter Should Be the Next VEEP...
1. Experience Points!
Duncan Hunter has served in the House of Representatives since 1980! He was Chairman of the Armed Services Committee during the first two years of the Bush Jr. presidency. Within the committee, Hunter was one of the strongest critics of a Defense Logics Agency that misspent military funds, demanding explanations for incompetence. He also has a law degree and began a storefront practice that serviced the Hispanic community, sometimes without compensation.

2. He’s a Patriot!

Every other sentence out of John McCain’s mouth refers to his Vietnam service, but little did you know… Duncan Hunter also served in South Vietnam. He recently made an innovative proposal to President Bush that suggested they recruit State Department members from Abu Ghiraib and other military hospitals, instead of their independent agency.

3. He’s a Uniter, Not a Divider!
In his home state of California, Hunter receives 60% of the Hispanic vote and 70% of the Democratic vote! In the 2006 election, Hunter beat Democrats and Libertarians alike.

4. He was ahead of his time on immigration policy!
The erection of a border security fence may sound like recent news to many, but Hunter mandated a 14-mile fence between San Diego and Tijuana back in 1994. In 2005, he cited its success and called for the extension of the fence across the entire US-Mexican border. His voting record received an “A” grade from Americans for Better Immigration.

And This from The Conservative
"Why Duncan Hunter Will Be In The Cabinet"
"Duncan Hunter is congenial, motivated, competent and experienced. His legacy with the “House Armed Services committee” cannot be equaled. Our next Republican president will do well to include Duncan Hunter in their cabinet. Why settle for a second stringer with inadequate experience, when you can have a seasoned veteran like Duncan Hunter that knows all the playbook, and is a leader in the huddle?"

"1A-In the strength department was Representative Duncan Hunter. Hunter has almost solidified the Vice-President slot for himself. No other candidate on stage should even be considered as a possibility. Hunter is the man. He simply doesn’t have the charm and star power to be the nominee, but man does he have gravitas. Buckets of it. He is the Cheney of 2008, but with 55 electoral votes in his back pocket. A Giuliani/Hunter ticket might win California."

There is plenty more where these came from, but my google finger is getting tired.
I suggest Sooner Thought learn to do some thinking before typing... sooner or later maybe he will.


Thursday, January 24, 2008

Appropriate Gun Control

Hat tip to Okie Campains for the story...

Sufficient Calibers

Retired Army Green Beret Smokey Taylor was court martialed this weekend, and came away feeling good about it. Taylor, at age 80 the oldest member of Chapter XXXIII of the Special Forces Association, was on mock trial by his peers under the charge of "Failing to use a weapon of sufficient caliber" in the shooting of an intruder at his home in Knoxville, Tennesee, in December.

The entire affair, of course, was very much tongue in cheek. Taylor had been awakened in the early morning hours of Dec. 17, 2007, when an intruder broke into his home. He investigated the noises with one of his many weapons in hand. When the intruder threatened him with a knife, Taylor warned him, then brought his .22 caliber pistol to bear and shot him right between the eyes.

"That boy had the hardest head I’ve ever seen," Taylor said after his trial. "The bullet bounced right off." The impact knocked the would be thief down momentarily. He crawled out of the room then got up and ran out the door and down the street. Knoxville police apprehended him a few blocks away and he now awaits trial in the Knox County jail.

The charges against Taylor were considered to be serious. He is a retired Special Forces Weapons Sergeant with extensive combat experience during the wars in Korea and Vietnam. "Charges were brought against him under the premise that he should have saved the county and taxpayers the expense of a trial," said Chapter XXXIII President Bill Long of Asheville. "He could have used a .45 or .38. The .22 just wasn’t big enough to get the job done."

Taylor’s defense attorney, another retired Weapons Sergeant, disagreed. He said Taylor had done the right thing in choosing to arm himself with a .22 caliber handgun. "If he’d used a .45 or something like that the round would have gone right through the perp, the wall, the neighbor’s wall and possibly injured some innocent child asleep in its bed," he said. "I believe the evidence shows that Smokey Taylor exercised excellent judgment in his choice of weapons. He did nothing wrong, and clearly remains to this day an excellent weapons man."

Counsel for the defense then floated a theory as to why the bullet bounced off the perp’s forehead. "He was victimized by old ammunition," he said, "just as he was in Korea and again in Vietnam, when his units were issued ammo left over from World War II."

Taylor said nothing in his own defense, choosing instead to allow his peers to debate the matter. After the trial he said the ammunition was indeed old and added the new information that the perp had soiled his pants as he crawled out of the house. "I would have had an even worse mess to clean up if it had gone through his forehead," Taylor said. "It was good for both of us that it didn’t."

Following testimony from both sides, Taylor was acquitted of the charges and was given a round of applause. Meanwhile, back in Knox County, the word is out: Don’t go messing with Smokey Taylor. He just bought a whole bunch of fresh ammo.


Final Word? Not

A local blogger (using the term loosely) who was in the running for "Oklahoma's Worst Blog Of The Year -2007" has launched an ad hominem attack on me for submitting a direct quote from his hero Joe Biden at his site in response to the blogger's attack on the President, calling me a "troll" and "geezer" and calling my submitting Biden's quote an "ad hominem attack" and asserting that he gets the "final word". LOL

Almost every blogger gets comments that are not publishable (you should see some that I get) but I do try to make my comments at other sites relevant and on topic without cursing etc. The blogger in question however finds any disagreement to be an "ad hominem attack", which is one of his favorite phrases.
Not surprising since most of his posts are exactly that... name calling and ad hominem attacks.

Take the post that he is referring to in his ad hominem attack on me for example. He used a "study" (cough cough) funded by none other than George Soros (General Betrayus ring a bell?) to allegedly "prove" that President Bush and VP Cheney were lying about WMD.

I responded with a quote (with no comment by me except "false statements?" referring to the title of his piece) from his hero Joe Biden from 2007 defending his statements in 2002 where he said Bush and Cheney were not lying and that it wasn't a "pipedream" concocted by Cheney and that in fact Saddam was a threat, was trying to get nukes and had to be removed from power.

The ad hominem bloggers excuse for Biden?
He got all his info from Bush and is of course therefore not responsible for what he says and was "simply wrong"- it's Bush's fault. LOL
Why then does Biden stand by those words to this day?
Why did Biden say that he researched his own information and came to his own conclusions independent of Bush and or Cheney?
Not smart enough to read the bloggers site and get educated I suppose.
To those on the left, (like Bill and Hillary) quoting them in context is considered an ad hominem attack.
Not surprising from someone who says on his blog that in Oklahoma history, "sooners" were just people that "arrived first" without mentioning how they "arrived first". Not exactly a true description of sooners to say the least. But the blogger in question never lets facts get in the way of a good story.
I suggest he change the name of his blog to "Ad Hominem Thoughts".
Thanks for the free promotion though... I do appreciate that.

Labels: , , ,

Hunter Introduces Construir El Cerco - "dos"

Build The Fence "2"
By Monisha Bansal Staff Writer
January 24, 2008

( - Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) reintroduced the Secure Fence Act Wednesday, which requires the construction of double-layered fencing along America's Southern land border within six months.

"Securing our Southern land border remains one of our nation's greatest priorities," said Hunter, who dropped out of the presidential race on Saturday.

"When the Secure Fence Act was enacted more than one year ago, the American people were pleased to see that the necessary steps were finally being taken to secure the dangerous and problematic smuggling corridors that exist along our border with Mexico," he said.

"Instead of adhering to the law and building the prescribed fencing, the Department of Homeland Security began to immediately retreat from the mandates of the bill, indicating its intention to only build 370 miles of fence and not the required 700 miles," he said.

When President George W. Bush signed the Secure Fence Act in October 2006, he called it "an important step in our nation's efforts to secure our border and reform our immigration system."

Hunter noted that recent provisions in the omnibus spending bill "eliminated the most substantive provisions of the Secure Fence Act, including the requirement that fencing be double-layered and extend 700 miles across our Southern land border."

"Today, DHS has built approximately 75 miles of new fence along the border, of which only 5 miles is double-layered," Hunter said in a statement.

"The Secure Fence Act was clear in that it required double-layered fencing, separated by a road for Border Patrol vehicles, extending over 700 miles of land border. Yet DHS continues to believe that single-layered fencing, vehicle barriers, and virtual fencing are adequate and reliable enforcement mechanisms," he added.

"The reality is that single-layered fencing and vehicle barriers do little, if anything, to stop illegal immigration and the virtual alternative being aggressively pursued by DHS remains ineffective and unusable," Hunter said.

The Mexican 300 Video

Now this is funny, I don't care who you are... unless you are here illegally of course and even then, it might still be funny except it's not in Spanish. (Hat tip to Mare and Alex "the conservative tool")


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

What The Huck? !!!!!

Get me the heavy duty duct tape fast, make it 3 rolls please... my head is about to blow.

Headline From Michelle Malkin's Blog
"Hunter Endorses Huck; Heads Explode !!"

Michelle is not the only one confused by this news. The blogosphere is ablaze with the news that Duncan Hunter apparently in some sort of crazed state of delusion has endorsed.... uggg cough cough, Mike.... gag, gag, Huckabee... puke, puke.

What in the wide world of sports is going on here?
Duncan my friend, you have been conned by an Arkansas politician who is slicker than slick Willy himself. If he promised you a job (Sec of Defense) that isn't his to promise, (since he won't win) then all you did was shoot yourself (along with the rest of us) in both feet (and knees).

If you thought the rest of us Ranger's would follow suit, you were mistaken. We had already researched Huckabee and found him severely lacking... otherwise we would have already been on his team and not yours.

But while Hunter was striking a deal with Huckelberry today, Hunter's supporters were working on a re-draft Duncan Hunter movement following Fred Thompson's departure from the race.
Go figure.

So, considering all of the above, I have no choice but to immediately call for Mike Huckabee to withdraw from the race. There is only so much duct tape in the world and while I was at the hardware store buying a case of it, I noticed they are already running low.

Un-draft (impeach, withdraw, drop out) Mike Huckabee, FREE DUNCAN HUNTER NOW.


Response to Mike Huckabee From A Hunter Supporter

Thanks for asking, but "No thank you".

If I wanted a former Governor from Arkansas to run the country, I'd vote for the other former Governor's wife.

UPDATE: On Duncan Hunter's endorsement today... with all due respect, "no thank you".

I second the motion for THIS instead.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Abortion Victims Remembered


Rep. Duncan Hunter
Abortion Victims Remembered

Thirty-five years ago today, seven of nine Supreme Court justices voted to make abortion a legal right in this country. In the landmark case of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court dramatically changed our nation, ushering in an era that disrespects human life and fails to acknowledge our responsibility to value and protect life from the moment of conception.

Every year since the Supreme Court pronounced its verdict in Roe v. Wade, a courageous and dedicated group of individuals have traveled to Washington to remind us of this unfortunate decision. The March for Life brings together pro-life activists from across the country to commemorate the Court’s infamous ruling and to raise a voice on behalf of the unborn children who remain vulnerable and unprotected by our laws. This year’s 35th March for Life provides an opportunity for us to once again reflect on the harm caused by Roe v. Wade and the destructive policies it promotes.

The numbers alone are shocking: over 1.3 million abortions are performed in the United States each year and over 50 million abortions have been performed in this country since 1973. The death of an entire generation of Americans is nothing short of a national tragedy. Together, with the March for Life and the many other groups that work to bring attention to this injustice, we must continue our efforts to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Over the last decade, I have introduced legislation in Congress that would do exactly what the Supreme Court failed to do in the case of Roe v. Wade: recognize the personhood of the unborn. My bill, the Right to Life Act, makes clear that life begins at conception, that the unborn child is indeed a human being, and that he is therefore entitled to all the rights and protections afforded an American citizen. In the 110th Congress, the Right to Life Act has once again attracted strong support, with 100 Members of Congress signing on as co-sponsors.

In addition to the growing support the Right to Life Act continues to receive, I am also encouraged by recent reports indicating that the number of abortions being performed in this country has dropped to the lowest level since 1976. This news means that more women are abstaining from risky behavior and even foregoing abortion in favor of motherhood or adoption. Thanks to the efforts of the pro-life advocates here in Washington today, more Americans are surely opening their hearts to the truth that human life has intrinsic value and dignity.

Despite this welcoming news, Roe v. Wade continues to undermine our national commitment to protecting the life and liberty of the most vulnerable among us. For this reason, we must continue supporting legislation like the Right to Life Act and appoint judges who understand that respect for human life lies at the heart of our Constitution.
Our next President will likely have an opportunity to make at least one nomination to our nation’s highest court. I hope that when he does, he will remember the millions of Americans that have participated in the March for Life since its inception, and the Constitutional rights afforded to every American, including the unborn.


Part Two of "Find The Conservative" (If you can)

Fred Thompson called it quits today following his poor performance in the South Carolina primary making it a little tougher to find any conservative among the remaining candidates.

Conservatives can now feel free to choose from the remaining liberal left-leaning candidates.

John McCain- Arizona liberal maverick voted against the Bush tax cuts, supports the McCain/Kennedy amnesty for illegal immigrants and authored the McCain/Feingold Campaign finance bill. John McCain on abortion... "But certainly in the short term, or even the long term, I would not support repeal of Roe v. Wade, which would then force X number of women in America to [undergo] illegal and dangerous operations." On Sunday, on CNN's "Late Edition," McCain reiterated that he would not have an abortion "litmus" test for a running mate or Supreme Court nominees."

Mike Huckabee- Arkansas liberal raised taxes more than democrat Bill Clinton as Governor of Arkansas in less time, opposes enforcing illegal immigration laws and supports free education in our colleges for illegal immigrants. Huckabee also pardoned more criminals as Governor than Bill Clinton sold pardons to as President.

Rudy Giuliani- NY liberal, pro-choice, pro-gun control and against enforcing illegal immigration laws.

Mitt Romney- Spent most of his career convincing Massachusetts voters that he was liberal only to discover he is now a "conservative" running for President. Pro- socialized healthcare, pro-China, still supports embryonic stem cell research funded by tax revenue.

Ron Paul- not worthy of consideration. Called the border fence "insulting", blames US for the 9/11 attacks and proposes closing all US military bases in foreign countries. Paul's answer to America's drug abuse problem is to legalize all drugs. He does have the endorsement of "Hookers Are Us" though, so he's got that going for him. LOL


The Left Still Doesn't Get it... The Surge Was Successful

Another amazing and factual analysis on Iraq by Engram at Backtalk Blog

Evaluating The Troop Surge Through The Eyes of The Left
A perfectly liberal analysis of the troop surge just appeared in the Washington Post. In the end, the poor fellow ties himself up in knots trying to figure out why our troops are still there, and, as usual, his confusion can be traced directly to his refusal to name the enemy in Iraq. In addition, despite the fact that his piece appears in the esteemed Washington Post whereas my response appears on this lowly blog, his piece is filled with sweeping and unsubstantiated assertions whereas my response is filled with direct evidence and links to each source (so you can check these matters for yourself). Odd that it has to be that way. In any case, let's see what he has to say:

Surge to Nowhere

Don't buy the hawks' hype. The war may be off the front pages, but Iraq is broken beyond repair, and we still own it.

By Andrew J. Bacevich
Sunday, January 20, 2008; Page B01

As the fifth anniversary of Operation Iraqi Freedom nears, the fabulists are again trying to weave their own version of the war. The latest myth is that the "surge" is working.
As the violence in Baghdad and Anbar province abates, the political and economic dysfunction enveloping Iraq has become all the more apparent. The recent agreement to rehabilitate some former Baathists notwithstanding, signs of lasting Sunni-Shiite reconciliation are scant. The United States has acquired a ramshackle, ungovernable and unresponsive dependency that is incapable of securing its own borders or managing its own affairs. More than three years after then-national security adviser Condoleezza Rice handed President Bush a note announcing that "Iraq is sovereign," that sovereignty remains a fiction.

Wow. There's an awful lot packed into that paragraph, so let's take it apart real slow. First, back when civilian casualties were spiraling out of control, anti-war extremists loved to cite very detailed casualty statistics (such as the number of bodies piling up in the Baghdad morgue every month). Not any more. Now, the incredible success of the troop surge with respect to casualties in Iraq is relegated to a mere one-half of one single sentence, as if it is quite painful to discuss but is also too obvious to simply ignore. Here is his entire analysis of the effect of the troop surge on casualties in Iraq: "As the violence in Baghdad and Anbar province abates..." That's it? Are any lives being saved? Or are we just protecting a few bridges that were once being bombed? Let me show you what violence abating looks like in terms of innocent human lives (according to detailed statistics from Iraq Body Count):

I haven't adjusted the data at all, and the numbers are fairly complete through November (which is the most recent month shown). You can see a big one-month spike in casualties from a panic-driven stampede that killed over 1000 people way back in August of 2005, but otherwise casualties were generally in the vicinity of about 1000 per month until early 2006. The black bar marks the month that al Qaeda bombed the Golden Mosque in Samarra, which set off a wave of uncontrollable sectarian violence (and brought casualties to nearly 3000 per month). The purple bars show the months of the troop surge, which began to unfold in February of 2007 and became operational only last June. From September on, casualties are down to about 1000 per month again. Thus, what Bacevich relegates to a mere half-sentence translates into almost 2000 civilian lives being saved every month. Let me repeat that: almost 2000 civilian lives are being saved every month. I guess that's chump change to the decent left, so much so that it can be accurately summarized by simply saying that violence is abating.

I think I'm going to start a new Iraq Body Count, one that keeps track of the minimum number of civilians that would have died every month had our troops been withdrawn, as humanitarians on the left wanted to do even though they knew perfectly well that it would result in genocide. The number of innocent lives saved as a result of the troop surge is going up fast, and I suspect it will keep going up for a long time to come.

Continuing with the first sentence of that jam-packed paragraph, Bacevich refers to "economic dysfunction" (with no data or citations to back his point, of course). Here's what the International Monetary Fund has to say about that:

Iraqi economy set to accelerate, IMF predicts

The Iraqi economy should enjoy a significant acceleration in growth this year if the country's security situation continues to improve, the International Monetary Fund predicted today.

The IMF expects the economy to expand as much as 7pc this year, possibly rising to 8pc in 2009, after anecdotal evidence suggested the country has topped the fund's prediction of 1.3pc growth for last year.

Perhaps Bacevich is a more credible source than the IMF, but I don't regard him as such. To me, he seems like little more than a snotty liberal doing his best to minimize the remarkable success in Iraq. Some of Bacevich's specific economic concerns fall in the areas of electricity and oil production:

Even today, Iraqi electrical generation meets barely half the daily national requirements. Baghdad households now receive power an average of 12 hours each day -- six hours fewer than when Saddam Hussein ruled. Oil production still has not returned to pre-invasion levels.

Geez. The troop surge achieved its incredible success a mere 4.5 months ago. What do you want, an economic miracle to happen in that short time? Well, that's basically what you have. The best way to look at electricity is with regard to megawatts generated in Iraq as a whole (not hours of electricity in Baghdad). Here are those numbers for each month of each year (data taken from the Iraq Index):

The dashed line represents the average pre-war level. As you can see, the last few months have seen the highest output yet (with that high output being associated with the success of the troop surge in reducing casualties). I don't think that fact comes through from reading Bacevich's evidence-free diatribe.

With regard to oil production, it's true that Iraq has still not hit its pre-war peak, but you really should look at the recent trend (because, after all, conditions have improved only recently):

The dashed line indicates the pre-war peak, and you can see that output is nearing that level. You can also see why the IMF is optimistic about the future even though Bacevich isn't. Indeed, the increased production and increased price of oil has been great for oil revenues:

Those are some economic facts and figures about Iraq. Sweeping it all away by mindlessly referring to "economic dysfunction" is a downright bizarre thing to do.

And about that political reconciliation that Bacevich also tries to minimize even as it unfolds before his very eyes, here is what the UN has to say:

UN sees Iraq progress despite misgivings

BAGHDAD, Jan 16 (Reuters) - The United Nations envoy to Baghdad said on Wednesday he would present a positive picture of progress in Iraq in a report to the Security Council despite earlier having serious misgivings about reconciliation efforts. U.N. envoy Staffan de Mistura said the passing of a key law allowing former members of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party to return to government jobs had changed what had been a pessimistic view of progress in a crucial year for Iraq.

Bacevich is the kind of person who typically reveres the UN, so this UN analysis upsets his apple cart just a bit.

At the end of his column, Bacevich gets to the very heart of the matter:

But how exactly do these sacrifices serve the national interest? What has the loss of nearly 4,000 U.S. troops and the commitment of about $1 trillion -- with more to come -- actually gained the United States?
In reality, the war's effects are precisely the inverse of those that Bush and his lieutenants expected. Baghdad has become a strategic cul-de-sac. Only the truly blinkered will imagine at this late date that Iraq has shown the United States to be the "stronger horse." In fact, the war has revealed the very real limits of U.S. power. And for good measure, it has boosted anti-Americanism to record levels, recruited untold numbers of new jihadists, enhanced the standing of adversaries such as Iran and diverted resources and attention from Afghanistan, a theater of war far more directly relevant to the threat posed by al-Qaeda. Instead of draining the jihadist swamp, the Iraq war is continuously replenishing it.

Many on the left think like this because they are simply blind to the fact that al Qaeda decided to make Iraq (not Afghanistan) the central front in their war with America. You can blame Bush for that, but it's downright bizarre not to acknowledge that (a) al Qaeda suicide bombers deliberately provoked Shiite militias into killing Sunnis and (b) after the bombing of the Golden Mosque, the Shiite militias complied in an effort to eliminate al Qaeda's suicide bombing campaign against them. Instead of acknowledging this undeniable reality, Bacevich adheres to the standard liberal fiction that al Qaeda was in Afghanistan, not Iraq. In this regard, he has joined the likes of Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, both of whom also failed to notice the transparently obvious fact that while al Qaeda's suicide bombers were killing thousands in Iraq, they were hardly doing anything in Afghanistan.

Does Bacevich exhibit any curiosity at all about who the suicide bombers of Iraq might be? No, because like almost everyone on the left, his mind is enfeebled by the mistaken civil war scenario advocated by our left leaning mainstream media. But he really should pick up today's paper, where he'll find this news:

Papers Paint New Portrait of Iraq's Foreign Insurgents

By Karen DeYoung
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, January 21, 2008; Page A01
The cache of documents was discovered last fall by U.S. forces in the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar.
The records are "one of the deepest reservoirs of information we've ever obtained of the network going into Iraq," according to a U.S. official closely familiar with intelligence on the insurgent group al-Qaeda in Iraq.
Suicide attacks by the Sunni group against Shiite targets sparked the sectarian violence that swept Iraq in 2006 and the first half of last year. Al-Qaeda in Iraq carried out more than 4,500 attacks against civilians in 2007, killing 3,870 and wounding nearly 18,000, the military announced yesterday.

Based on the Sinjar records, U.S. military officials in Iraq said they now think that nine out of 10 suicide bombers have been foreigners, compared with earlier estimates of 75 percent.

Get the picture? That this story is now coming through loud and clear in the mainstream media is nothing short of extraordinary. It makes it clear that, contrary to what everyone of the left believes, the suicide bombers are foreign al Qaeda terrorists who have been incredibly deadly (killing nearly 4000 innocent civilians in 2007 alone). My only complaint about the story is that it does not make a critical point that the vast majority of readers need to have spelled out for them. In particular, it makes no mention of why al Qaeda is slaughtering innocent Muslims by the thousands in Iraq. Thus, readers are left to think along these lines: "well, let's see, al Qaeda is made up of Sunnis, and there's a civil war in Iraq between Sunnis and Shiites that George Bush stirred up with his misbegotten adventure in Iraq, so it must be the case that al Qaeda is fighting on the Sunni side of that civil war."

To the extent that a casual consumer of the news thinks about al Qaeda in Iraq, they are likely to think along those lines. But they could not be more wrong. We've known for years what al Qaeda is trying to accomplish with their suicide bombing campaign because the late leader of al Qaeda in Iraq (Zarqawi) spelled it all out in a letter that was intercepted way back in 2004. He made it quite clear that he did not want to join a civil in Iraq. Instead, because such a war was not happening on its own, he decided to incite one. That is, he decided to goad the Shiite militias into killing Sunnis because the resulting chaos would suit al Qaeda's purposes. Inciting a civil war is different from joining a civil war. Here is some of what he said:

The Shi'a in our opinion, these are the key to change. Targeting and striking their religious, political, and military symbols, will make them show their rage against the Sunnis and bear their inner vengeance. If we succeed in dragging them into a sectarian war, this will awaken the sleepy Sunnis who are fearful of destruction and death at the hands of these Sabeans.
As far as the Shi'a, we will undertake suicide operations and use car bombs to harm them.
Some people will say, that this will be a reckless and irresponsible action that will bring the Islamic nation to a battle for which the Islamic nation is unprepared. Souls will perish and blood will be spilled. This is, however, exactly what we want...

That is, al Qaeda's plan (i.e., Zarqawi's wickedly ingenious idea) was to slaughter Shiites using suicide bombers and to destroy Shiite mosques to goad them into killing Sunnis. In Zarqawi's mind, that's the scenario that would advance the cause of al Qaeda in Iraq.

But Bacevich, like just about everyone on the left, is blissfully unaware of all of this. That explains why he thinks that al Qaeda's crushing defeat in Iraq is some sort of propaganda victory for them (not the propaganda disaster it actually is). That's exactly what you'd think if you didn't know the facts and lived in a liberal echo chamber (as he I assume he does).

Bacevich doesn't appear to know that al Qaeda's suicide bombers were killing Muslims by the thousands in Iraq, but the Muslim world is not that naive. They know perfectly well who has been slaughtering innocent Muslims in Iraq, which is why al Qaeda's reputation has simply plummeted throughout the Muslim world according to the latest Pew Global Attitudes survey:

According to opponents of the invasion of Iraq, it wasn't supposed to happen this way. Instead, the invasion was supposed to inflame the passions of the Muslim world and provide a propaganda victory to al Qaeda. Instead, the Muslim world has turned against al Qaeda. They have also turned increasingly against al Qaeda's method of fighting their war, which consists of suicide bombings that target innocent civilians:

Al Qaeda's only hope of recovering its former glory was to achieve victory over America by helping the Democrats to force a troop withdrawal, thereby allowing al Qaeda's relentless slaughter of innocent Shiites to continue unopposed. And this also helps to explain the eerie code of silence about al Qaeda in Iraq among Democrats. That is, Democrats think of themselves as being "decent" people. It is an explicit part of their identity, and they feel that it separates them from the indecent party (namely, the Republicans). I know this feeling well because I have been a Democrat all my life. I obviously don't feel that way anymore, but I do know the mind set. And it explains why the liberal mind is so reluctant to accept the undeniable fact that al Qaeda declared war on America in Iraq. Because no decent person would recommend throwing innocent Iraqis to the wolves of al Qaeda (especially since our invasion attracted al Qaeda to Iraq), the only way to maintain one's sense of decency while simultaneously calling for a troop withdrawal that would permanently discredit George Bush was to ignore (and even deny) the existence of al Qaeda in Iraq. So that's what the Democrats did, and they are still doing it today.

Ironically, Bacevich says that the war has "...recruited untold numbers of new jihadists" even though we can be pretty sure that his preferred approach (namely, withdrawal) is what would have done that. This is based on a National Intelligence Estimate that Democrats once gleefully leaked to the press because it said that our invasion had become a cause celeb for jihadists around the world. Indeed, it had. That's why Bacevich is stuck on that idea. But like everyone on the left (and everyone in the mainstream media), he missed the rest of what that very NIE had to say:

The Iraq conflict has become the cause celebre for jihadists, breeding a deep resentment of US involvement in the Muslim world and cultivating supporters for the global jihadist movement.
we judge that al-Qa’ida will continue to pose the greatest threat to the Homeland and US interests abroad by a single terrorist organization.
Should jihadists leaving Iraq perceive themselves, and be perceived, to have failed, we judge fewer fighters will be inspired to carry on the fight.

Not only has al Qaeda's reputation been shot down throughout the Muslim world, jihadists leaving Iraq must now perceive themselves to have failed. It cannot be otherwise. But the exact opposite would have happened had the Democrats gotten their way. In that case, they would have achieved a self-fulfilling prophecy. Just as Bush achieved a self-fulfilling prophecy (i.e., Iraq became became the central front in the war on terror that it wasn't at the time we invaded), the Democrats could have had theirs, too (i.e., our withdrawal would have caused the jihadists to have perceived themselves to be victorious, which, in turn, would have helped them to recruit untold numbers of new jihadists). Fortunately for everyone, the Democrats did not get their way.

Finally, let's revisit the heart of the matter. Bacevich asked: "But how exactly do these sacrifices serve the national interest?" Great question. For the answer, look at what is happening in Iraq and then also look at al Qaeda's standing in the world. If things continue as they are in Iraq, history will not overlook what Bacevich chooses not to see: al Qaeda will have suffered a crushing defeat of historic proportions because they invested everything in Iraq. We were going to have this war with al Qaeda whether or not we invaded Iraq. We didn't know it at the time, but, in retrospect, it seems clear that the suicide bombers were coming, either to Afghanistan or, as it turned out, to Iraq. Our only choice was to defeat them, and, for that reason, I am very grateful that John Kerry did not defeat George Bush in 2004. It seems likely to me that Kerry would have surrendered to al Qaeda in Iraq, perhaps without even realizing what he was doing. By contrast, when al Qaeda struck hard and created sectarian strife in Iraq (by design), Bush ordered a troop surge that is now saving innocent lives per month, is promoting political reconciliation, and has simply crushed al Qaeda in Iraq while shattering their reputation throughout the Muslim world. To you, that might seem like "a surge to nowhere," but, to me, it seems like a historic victory over the al Qaeda jihadists who declared war on America on September 11, 2001.
-By Engram- BackTalk Blog

God Bless you Engram, telling the truth at a time America needs some truth.


Let's Play "Find The Conservative"

As rumors fly about Fred Thompson possibly being the next Republican to withdraw from the Presidential race, one thing is for sure. There is no true conservative remaining in the race for president.

This from

..."The idea that Fred Thompson represented a major reversal of this course (away from Reagan conservatism) is a testament to his status as a chimera upon whom one could impart one’s wishes for an ideal candidate rather than any reality. As an actor, he often played the sort of no-nonsense, gruff talking, straight shooting leader that conservatives love; as a senator, though, he was rather ordinary.

Indeed, as the Washington Times pointed out last summer, his voting record put him to the left of Bill Frist.
His lifetime ACU rating of 86 is barely ahead of John McCain’s 82 — and he was a consistent supporter of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance legislation that earned its namesake so much enmity. As the Washington Post put it, “the two shared remarkably similar voting records in the Senate.” John Little links a now-no-longer-online Congressional Quarterly study which “found that Thompson and McCain voted the same way on 83 of 102 CQ-defined ‘key votes’ (81.4 percent) during the eight years the two men served together.”

For reasons mostly of style rather than substance, though, the conservative establishment pined for a Thompson campaign and has done whatever it can to derail McCain, as a front page piece in yesterday’s WaPo explained.

[Rush] Limbaugh led the way with a verbal blitz, not just against McCain but against his closest rival in South Carolina, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee.

“I’m here to tell you, if either of these two guys get the nomination, it’s going to destroy the Republican Party. It’s going to change it forever, be the end of it,” Limbaugh fumed on his radio show Tuesday. It was a line of argument that he kept up all week long.

[Former House Majority Leader Tom] DeLay resurfaced on Fox News Friday to excoriate McCain for working with “the most liberal Democrats in the Senate,” for passing an overhaul of campaign finance laws that “completely neutered the Republican Party,” and single-handedly thwarted oil drilling in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

“McCain has done more to hurt the Republican Party than any elected official I know of,” said DeLay, the former House majority leader, who was personally damaged by McCain’s Senate probe of lobbyist Jack Abramoff, a probe that implicated numerous DeLay associates.

Conservative blogger Patrick Ruffini, on the Web site of popular radio talk show host Hugh Hewitt, implored South Carolina Republicans on Friday to vote for Huckabee, simply to extend the nomination fight in hopes that another candidate could derail McCain.

And Jim DeMint, South Carolina’s ardently conservative senator who is backing Mitt Romney, issued a message Friday to “fellow conservatives,” warning that “Washington experience is the problem, not the solution. We cannot afford to have a President who has fought for amnesty for illegal immigrants, voted against the Bush Tax Cuts, and curtailed our First Amendment rights in the ill-conceived campaign finance legislation.” He never mentioned McCain’s name, but his meaning was clear.

The irony that so many of these people are lining up behind Mitt Romney, a guy who was a Massachusetts liberal until he started running for president, is simply bizarre.

Ruffini has set up an unscientific online poll aimed at Thompson supporters and they overwhelmingly (2,404 of 3,304, or 73%) say they’d switch to Romney. As of this writing, 2024 of 2302 wouldn’t be swayed even if Thompson were to endorse McCain.

This just goes to show that politics is largely irrational. People say that issues, judgment, and experience matter but, in reality, personality and style are what drive attitudes about candidates.

Nothing shows that better than last week’s Pew study on public perceptions of the ideology of the 2008 candidates. Republicans see Hillary Clinton as decidedly more liberal than Barack Obama, for example, while the general public and Democrats (correctly, in my view) see the two as rather similar ideologically with Obama somewhat further to the left. Regardless, all the candidates are much closer together on important public policy issues than the graphs would indicate.

We don’t choose candidates, though, based on a blind examination of their policy papers. Rather, we weigh them as personalities for “gravitas” and “leadership” and “toughness” and the degree to which they “care about people like me.” Fred Thompson is folksy and affable and therefore must be just like Ronald Reagan.

The beauty of long, grueling campaigns, though, is that they reveal people for who they are. Thompson doesn’t have the passion to do what it takes to be president. That probably just proves that he’s sane, really, but presidents have to spend four years working ridiculously long hours under constant scrutiny. People who want semi-normal lives, therefore, are unsuited for the job.

McCain, Romney, Huckabee and Giuliani are still in the running. One of them will ultimately win the nomination and run against the winner of the Hillary Clinton-Barack Obama playoffs in the Democratic Conference for the presidential championship.

None of them are my ideal candidate. It’s quite possible that Huckabee is far enough from my ideal that I’d prefer one of the Democrats; thankfully, it’s looking like I’m not going to have to make that version of Hobson’s choice. Otherwise, as distasteful as I find aspects of their agendas and personalities, I can’t imagine that Hillary Clinton would be my preferred alternative."
-end quote.

Note: Ron Paul isn't mentioned for a variety of reasons beginning with him being a Libertarian and not a true Republican conservative, continuing with his considering building a border fence "insulting", his views on drugs, prostitution and probably worse of all, his foreign policy of isolationism and appeasement.
No one would mistake Rudy Giuliani for a true conservative. Mitt's newly found conservatism is very questionable at best, Mike Huckabee is left of Bill Clinton on taxes, immigration and letting criminals go free. John McCain and Fred Thompson are virtually twins separated at birth.

There is no true conservative left in the race.
Happy Hunting.