Friday Digest

Digest

Oct. 19, 2001

Quote of the week…

“The tragic events of September 11th have led to renewed calls for the expansion of global government. Terrorism, we are told, is an international problem – and therefore the United States must subordinate its interests and defer to the international community before taking military action. Of course it’s certainly commendable that President Bush is trying to build an international coalition to fight terrorism, and we should be enormously grateful to our allies for their support during these trying times. Yet we must never allow our national sovereignty to be eroded in the name of international cooperation. We cannot forget that our Constitution grants Congress and the President complete authority to provide for national defense and declare war. International support for our efforts against Bin Laden is desirable, but we do not need anyone’s permission to act. Remember, the terrorists attacked on American soil and killed mostly American citizens. No international coalition can or should attempt to dictate our response.” –Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas)

On cross-examination…

“Why were our FBI and CIA caught so completely by surprise? Why have they been spending their resources chasing after a few people who were no harm to society, such as one loner on a mountaintop at Ruby Ridge and a pathetic religious group in Waco, while the plotting foreign terrorists crossed our borders and lived in our country illegally, got their flight training in Florida, and freely boarded our planes under their own names?” –Phyllis Schlafly

(Hey, did someone mention the high-profile multimillion dollar man hunt for a suspect in an abortion clinic bombing in the mountains of North Carolina in 1998 – when some of bin Laden’s terrorist cells were setting up shop? Did some Leftist political agenda divert the focus and resources of a large share of the nation’s federal investigator pool during the reign of the Clintonista regime while mass murderers were settling in the suburbs?)

Open Query…

“Are we, as a nation, doing the right thing in counterattacking in great force? Yes. Are we forming alliances and cutting corners that will make us proud tomorrow? Dunno.” –William Safire

The BIG lie…

“It has never been more critical for the American people to have confidence in the motives behind the federal government’s every action. The terror attacks and their aftermath have actually made it more important than ever that the … bill become law.” –New York Times

Sound like the topic is anti-terrorism legislation? Nope, the Times is asserting that Shays-Meehan campaign finance reform is needed to fight terror. Earlier in the week, the Times lamented that Republicans were “exploiting a tragic national emergency … to piggyback pet ideological measures on top of legislation to carry out the country’s most urgent priorities.” We suppose this means the Times’ editorial board has switched parties….

News from the Swamp…

In the Executive Branch, Mr. Bush is off to Red China for this weekend’s Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation meetings. On his way out of California, Mr. Bush spoke of the meeting as dedicated to assuring the “stability in large parts of the world.” We would add as a crucial phrase there, that stability in the world can only be guaranteed through political liberty, not through the economic fetters of such internationally brokered trade deals as will be on the meeting agenda.

On the Hill, as mentioned previously, many members of our august legislative branch of government were scurrying out of town this week to avoid any unpleasantries in the mail. When The Federalist and others such as Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and former CIA Director James Woolsey have referred to the need for “draining the swamp” to combat the terror threat, this isn’t what we meant!

Before the exodus, the House passed legislation touted as defending against further terror attacks, with few House members having actually read it, because the version crafted from the hard compromises of the Judiciary Committee was replaced at the last minute by a substitution closer to the legislation passed by the Senate. Reports from the conference committee are that language reconciling the House and Senate versions sunsets the most difficult provisions in four years – and dumped House version’s more reasonable two year review.

The Federalist seconds the Wall Street Journal’s position on “security” legislation: “We’d like to suggest a new post-September 11 rule for Congress. Any bill with the word ‘security’ in it should get double the public scrutiny, and maybe four times the normal wait, lest all kinds of bad legislation become law under the phony guise of fighting terrorism.”

There is one piece of legislation mentioning “security” that can bypass the above rule. Rep. Sue Myrick (R-NC), on the House Rules Committee, introduced legislation requiring all members of the House to undergo security clearance investigations. “There must be accountability for leaking sensitive information that could cost American lives. This is a new chapter in history for all of us. Members of Congress need to be informed, but leaking information has the potential to put our troops at risk. We have to do everything in our power to make sure it never happens again.”

And of note, rebuking the ACLU, the House passed (404-0) a resolution supporting the display of signs reading “God bless America” in the nation’s schools. The measure’s sponsor, freshman Rep. Henry Brown (R-SC), said, “To threaten a public school for showing the same type of patriotism that we all showed on the Capitol steps is the opposite of what this country is all about.”

Judicial Benchmarks…

After his brutal confirmation battle, we note an important benchmark this week: 10 years ago, Clarence Thomas took his oath to become a Supreme Court Justice. The Honorable Justice’s record of service to our country has been excellent, and we are very grateful he did not succumb to the Leftists’ attempted “borking” – which he contemporaneously referred to as a “high tech lynching.” You may recall that Justice Thomas was accused of being unfit due to a dubious accusation of “sexual harassment” of a much milder nature than that of the Prevaricator-in-Chief.

In other court news, a New Orleans federal appeals court this week weighed in on a Texas case involving Second Amendment rights, trying for a Solomonic decision but not quite making it. The court ruled that the Second Amendment is indeed a right of individual citizens to keep and bear firearms but that gun ownership may properly be restricted under restraining orders involving “limited, narrowly tailored … exceptions or restrictions” of that right.

In the halls of justice on the right, a New Jersey federal judge struck down an affirmative action law requiring characteristics-based hiring in “Garden State” casinos. Judge Stephen M. Orlofsky called the law a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment guarantees of equal protection.

On the Left…

Nation of Islam anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan said President Bush should not “hide behind national security,” when refusing to release specific evidence linking Osama bin Laden to the events of 9-11. Farrakhan said, “The nation would be more secure if you give the American people a reason to fight.”

Apparently Farrakhan was on Mars visiting Je$$e Ja¢k$on during the month of September.

Regarding your IRS overpayment…

“As I look through the many pages here of tax break on top of tax break, the fanatical faith, literally, in tax breaks as the end all, the be all, the cure all, for every social ill we have leads me to believe that probably somewhere is a tax break for Osama bin Laden so he’ll turn himself in,” said Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) on an economic stimulus package before the House Ways and Means Committee. Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill lamented further, “The $100 billion fiscal stimulus package approved by the Ways and Means Committee last week was too generous.”

(Somebody get a nasal swab and see what these guys have been inhaling….)

From the states…

As The Federalist previously alerted you, representative government may be a lost cause out on the Left Coast – at least for the foreseeable future. Of note, while much attention has been directed toward terrorist threats, California’s Sociocratic Gov. Gray Davis last weekend signed into law several pieces of “model legislation” (coming to a state near you), the worst of which included “gay marriage lite” and “handgun licensing lite.”

The first provides for a state “domestic partner” registry conferring numerous marriage rights. You may recall that Californians voted in 2000 overwhelmingly to restrain the definition of marriage to a one man-one woman union only, by 61 percent, so that this new law is in direct conflict with the expressed will of California voters. “In one fell swoop,” observed Randy Thomasson, director of the Campaign for California Families, “Gray Davis has cheapened every marriage in the state, undermined the vote of the people…and broken his written promise to the citizens of California.” (Davis had promised not to overturn the will of California voters.)

The other law requires handgun purchasers to pass a written test and a hands-on handling demonstration, and to provide personal identification and a thumbprint, making the collection of dossiers and databases of handgun owners much more intrusive and prone to abuse. In concert with another new law specifically providing for a new database to track gun owners who have “become ineligible” for their Second Amendment rights, gun confiscation is on the fast track in the “Gray State.”

Elsewhere in the Lost Cause region of the Left Coast, city council members of the People’s Republic of Berkeley voted 5-4 to condemn U.S. military action in Afghanistan, calling for the bombing to end “as quickly as possible.” Former city council member Ying Lee Kelley supported the resolution as an effort to “continue to honor Berkeley’s tradition of opposition to brute force to solve profoundly difficult social problems.” Speaking in opposition to the resolution, conservative Berkeley student Kelso Barnett said, “War does solve something. Ask the people of Europe who were liberated after World War II.”

And in New York, taking time out from an anthrax attack on his gubernatorial offices, Gov. George Pataki signed an executive order mandating that homosexuals be given benefits under New York’s Victims of Crime Act. Didn’t you really wonder when the Leftists and Sociocrats would begin making off with politically correct spending of funds earmarked for 9-11 victims?

The “Dumb and Dumber” Department…

National Federation of High School Track and Field Rules Committee Chairman Ed Thibideau announced this week that starter guns would be banned from future competitions. “As far as I’m concerned, it’s not appropriate to have caliber pistols at an athletic event, especially during a time when we’re at high alert against terrorist attacks. … Believe it or not, at every meet we run, there is someone who attends the races for the very first time. It’s frightening for someone to hear a gun go off when they don’t expect one to go off in the first place.”

Culture comment…

Responding to school administrators around the nation, who are forbidding any buttons or pins making mention of “God,” some students are folding dollar bills to show only the phrase “In God We Trust,” and pinning that to their shirts. Sounds like they have been getting their dose of The Federalist!

Faith Matters…

Friend of The Federalist Lou Sheldon tells us that The House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church recently issued a statement entitled, “On Waging Reconciliation.” The Bishops called for radical “peace-making” and noted that “the affluence of nations such as our own stands in stark contrast to other parts of the world wracked by the crushing poverty which causes the death of 6,000 children in the course of a morning.” Replied Rev. Sheldon, “[M]uddled thinking from religious liberals will only encourage more terrorism and undermine our national will to relentlessly pursue terrorists until the world is free from this scourge. Solomon said it well in Ecclesiastes. There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven. There is, says Solomon,‘ …a time to kill and a time to heal.’ For America, it is a time to kill.”

On the frontiers of science…

University of Texas researchers think they might be within weeks of confirming the discovery of an antidote to the anthrax toxin. “We need to do a second round of experiments to declare victory,” said Brent Iverson, but the results look promising.

Around the world…

As the U.S. was issuing unconditional orders that the Taliban turn over terrorists responsible for 9-11, Israel was issuing unconditional orders that the Palestinians turn over terrorists responsible for new violence against Israeli citizens, including the assassination of General Rehavam Zeevi. PM Ariel Sharon declared, “Arafat has seven days to impose absolute quiet in the (occupied) territories. If not, we will go to war against him. As far as I am concerned, the era of Arafat is over.” (That would be Nobel laureate Yasser Arafat.)

Speaking of Nobel laureates, now that UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and the UN itself were co-recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize, and the United States has paid over half a billion dollars in “back dues” to the UN, the world body is enjoying prestige and a loaded bank book for the first time in years. Offering his typical cogent and on-the-mark assessment, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) commented on the award: “We should remember that the image of the United Nations as a benevolent peacemaker is a myth, as evidenced by the sad history of its military actions over the past 30 years. In almost every instance its so-called ‘peacekeeping missions’ have done nothing but intensify regional conflicts. Kosovo and Somalia are poignant examples of UN policy gone bad, creating lasting resentment and instability rather than peace.”

And last, as we have previously noted and will again, among the first group of American patriots endeavoring to defend our nation from Jihadistan was 32-year old UAL 93 passenger Todd Beamer, who, upon being told the fate of three other aircraft hijacked along with his the morning of 9-11, said the Lord’s Prayer with an air-phone operator and asked her to call his wife to tell her he loves her, laid the phone down and said, “Let’s roll.” In those words, his fate was sealed. This morning, in that same spirit of faith and liberty, his widow Lisa, boarded a flight on the original Newark-to-San Francisco route of UAL 93. Preparing for departure, Mrs. Beamer said, “I want to show people it’s safe to get back on an airplane. We can’t let ourselves be held captive by terrorism.”

Indeed, we won’t. Let’s roll!

SECOND OPINION

The Media Organ Grinder

The most important lesson of the past two weeks is that the media – particularly the TV media – need to exercise much more responsibility for what they report and how often they report it. The endless loop of experts, soundbites, jingles and graphics has, in effect, secured Osama bin Laden’s hands around the nation’s neck.

Terrorism is psychological warfare and its success is measured in terms of a campaign’s ability to penetrate an adversary’s psyche, and disable it. Psychological warfare against an utterly unprepared Western nation can be very successful if the media give it full play. For example, in the last two weeks the calculated delivery of anthrax to a few high profile recipients cost terrorists about $7 in first class stamps. It cost the U.S. untold billions of dollars in productivity and capital market devaluation, and completely swamped federal, state and local response agencies with false alarms – not to mention the incalculable cost of stress on the whole social spectrum.

In effect, the media handed our adversaries a very disproportionate return on their investment – and that needs to stop NOW. At a time when our fellow citizens must focus reasonable energy and resources on viable threats – and there are serious threats – that focus is being diverted by popular TV media outlets unwittingly conspiring with bin Laden by filling their broadcasts with hyperbolic misinformation on threats that are, in actuality, very limited in scope.

So, what are the viable threats?

In our assessment, Jihadistan’s strategy is to implement terrorist assaults on our nation until they achieve their primary objective – to collapse the U.S. economy and diminish the nation’s status and influence in world affairs – especially our sphere of influence in the Middle East. Their objective is lofty, but one that is only kept beyond their reach by our national resolve to maintain domestic continuity of government and commerce while we behead Jihadistan’s active cadre anywhere and everywhere they reside.

As Sen. Bill Frist noted this week, “Osama bin Laden said it is his religious duty to acquire biological weapons, and we’ve seen that he’ll use weapons, and so this could be done.” Though we still believe that genetically engineered biological contagiums are Jihadistan’s weapons of first choice, given their limited access to those weapons, we believe that the simultaneous use of conventional bombs and/or chemical weapons will be Jihadistan’s next frontal method of attack. Those bombs could be multiple detonations in aircraft or in vehicles near strategic locations, and the chemical attacks could occur any place that large numbers of people are in close quarters – indoor arenas, malls, etc.

We are in a race for time. As The Federalist has stated repeatedly since 9-11, the most vulnerable period for our nation is the next 6-12 months as we surge our military and intelligence capabilities to restore our capability to handle the Jihadistan threat, which was, prior to 9-11, wholly underestimated by virtually all concerned. In this critical period, our adversaries will attempt to match our increased level of preparedness with more dramatic assaults to reap the desired psychological effect necessary to achieve their objectives.

But the tactical, technical and financial exposure our adversaries risk with higher profile assaults will make them far more vulnerable to counter-terrorism efforts and, thus, their attempts less feasible if at all possible. This is not to say they will not successfully launch attacks against us in the coming days, months or years. Bin Laden and his cadre are formidable adversaries. But it is to say, with the passing of each day, that the probability of their success is diminished.

So, what do we do as citizens?

First, and most important, “Fear not!” Second, preparedness is the antidote to psychological vulnerability. We must take appropriate actions to protect our families and communities. Third, several hundred thousand patriots read The Federalist every week. We must enlist our fellow Americans and lead the charge to hold our central government to its constitutional duty to defend the nation – both offensively in terms of destroying Jihadistan, and defensively in terms of preparedness, response and recovery.

Our national legislature – if we can get them to reconvene – must take action to protect our borders and eject suspect visa holders from nation states known to support Jihadistan. They should employ a bit of street wisdom, and prohibit foreign nationals from terrorist states from making application for aircraft or commercial vehicle operation permits and all other manner of weapon delivery systems.

Congress must fund antidote, inoculation and antibiotic stores in sufficient quantities to defend against national epidemics. We have wisely spent untold billions in cold war nuclear deterrence. Production of sufficient quantities of serums for bacterial and viral toxins is a drop in the bucket compared to any single year’s spending on social welfare.

Finally, no amount of constraints upon our unalienable God-given liberties will fully ensure us against “retail” terrorist attacks – meaning no such liberties should be permanently relinquished in the name of temporary “security.” The only lasting security is in our national resolve to find and slaughter every adherent of Jihadistan – squash these vermin every time they poke their snouts out of their rat holes.

Mullah Mohammed Omar, supreme leader of the Taliban, proclaimed last week: “The situation where we are now, there is either death or victory. …The Afghan man is a fighter willing to die for jihad.” But as famously noted by Gen. George Patton, “I want you to remember that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country….”

To preserve American liberty and remain a beacon of freedom for the world, we must resolve to kill these bastards with prejudice – or our countrymen will continue to be killed indiscriminately. Indeed, there is either victory or death.

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