Friday Digest


Aug. 15, 2003

Quote of the week…

“Let the pulpit resound with the doctrine and sentiments of religious liberty. Let us hear of the dignity of man’s nature, and the noble rank he holds among the works of God… Let it be known that British liberties are not the grants of princes and parliaments.” –John Adams

News from the Swamp…

In the Executive Branch, President Bush, still taking a working vacation at his Crawford, Texas, home, has split his schedule between usual daily briefings, meetings with other staff groups, political fund raising, and chores and recreation around the ranch. He opted for one significant decision while away from the Swamp, this week tapping Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt as new head of the Environment Protection Agency. The departure of Christine Whitman as EPA chief was welcome, as she catered to the environmental extremists we often dub “eco-nuts.” However, Leavitt has positioned himself politically as “pro-environment,” leading Competitive Enterprise Institute President Fred Smith to conclude Leavitt’s “a western Whitman.” Smith noted “… [T]he risk that he’ll think his goal is to advance environmental goals more efficiently rather than ask what the environmental goals should be.”

On the Homeland Security front…

The FBI had a high-profile arrest this week, picking up India-born British citizen Hemant Lakhani in a sting operation, for attempting to sell a shoulder-fired missile to Jihadis seeking to bring down a U.S. passenger jetliner. Only thing is, his “buyer” was an FBI informant, and his sales products, an SA-18 surface-to-air missile and launcher, had been disabled at the source point in Russia.

In more chilling home-front news, just as hijacking threats have been resurfacing, the Transportation Security Agency to date has trained and certified fewer than 100 airline pilots as “federal flight deck officers” approved to defend their aircraft with firearms. The TSA, you will remember, opposed the idea from its inception, although it’s indubitably the cheapest, fastest – and arguably the best – method of protecting passengers and planes from terrorist hijackings. Pilots would prefer that the FBI take over the training program.

On the subject of hijacking, two unidentified Pakistani men from the FBI’s terrorism watch-list were arrested last Saturday at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, after paying cash for two one-way tickets to New York City. One of the men was previously detained on suspicion of having an association with terrorists, and had been tracked by the CIA. Both men are now in custody on immigration charges as authorities continue to investigate.

U.S. agents also captured Riduan Isamuddin this week, believed to be al-Qa'ida’s top operative in Southeast Asia and mastermind of the October, 2002 Bali bombing which killed nearly 200 people. Riduan is on his way back to face Indonesian justice.

The DHS is mulling over a recommendation to junk the color-coded levels of threat warnings. The late-night humor over just what a “yellow” or “orange” threat means is merely symptomatic of public puzzlement. The alternative, eminently sensible, is to issue specific information about threats gleaned from intelligence as those arise.

From the “Department of Military Readiness”…

There were some media reports that in its version of the intelligence authorization bill for fiscal 2004 the Senate has included a new set of restrictions on the activity of Special Operations Forces in covert missions. According to reports, the new regulations would require presidential authorization for the execution of covert missions, heretofore not needed. CIA and Defense officials condemn the move, arguing that maximum flexibility and timeliness are required in the use of SpecOps troops, while the Senate provisions would require all such covert dispersions to be channeled through Capitol Hill for approval. The House version of the intelligence-authorization bill does not include the Senate’s restrictive provisions, and a House-Senate conference may drop the language. Though the Senate authors of the classified bill remain anonymous, the egregious nature of these restrictions limiting the military’s capacity to respond to terrorist threats appear to be nothing more than an effort to obstruct and politicize U.S. national security imperatives. We suspect that if this language is in the final Senate bill, it will be vetoed by President Bush.

Regarding the redistribution of your income…

In an interesting case before U.S. District Judge Jon McCalla in Memphis, FedEx Pilot Vernice Kuglin, who refused to file income tax-returns on $920,000 in earnings because she believed the federal tax code did not apply to her, was found not guilty on six counts of tax evasion and filing false W-4 forms for the period 1996 to 2001 – avoiding 30 years in prison and $1.5 million in fines. Kuglin questioned the IRS in writing as to whether the payment of taxes was “voluntary” or by “voluntary compliance,” and the IRS refused to answer her question. The case has attracted a great deal of interest from tax-protest activists who argue that, indeed, the current tax code specifies that the payment of taxes is “voluntary.” The question of whether Kuglin will still be liable for tax payment was unresolved. For her part, Miss Kuglin said, “I will pay all the taxes for which I am liable.”

From the “Regulatory Commissars” File…

The word from Washington, D.C., has been handed down from on high. Border Patrol agents are not to enforce the laws they are sworn to uphold! William T. Veal, a Border Patrol administrative head, sent around a memo that “agents are not authorized to conduct any interior enforcement or city-patrol operations in or near residential areas or places of employment.” The agents rightly object to this order from their superiors, noting not only the laxity toward the nation’s laws but also that this bars them from arresting even known criminal illegal aliens they see on city streets. So much for respect for the law from government workers!

The BIG lie…

This week’s “Algor Mortis” Award: “I’m convinced that one reason we’ve had so many nasty surprises in our economy is that the country somehow got lots of false impressions about what we could expect from the big tax cuts that were enacted.” –Albert Arnold Gore, who apparently thinks the “nasty surprise to our economy” on 9-11 was the result of tax cuts. Gore seems to have forgotten that the current economic recession began under the last administration – Clinton-Gore, as we recall – and preparations for the attack on our nation on 9-11, bringing the warfront with Jihadistan to our soil, also took place on the Clinton-Gore watch.

Gore went on to say, “Millions of Americans now share a feeling that something pretty basic has gone wrong in our country, and that some important American values are being placed at risk, and they want to set it right [but Bush is willing to] manipulate facts in service to a totalistic ideology that is felt to be more important than the mandates of basic honesty.” You can make up your own punch lines when Gore has the audacity to use the words “American values,” “manipulate facts” and “basic honesty” in the same sentence.

The editors of the Washington Post had this advice for Demo-dumbos who are inclined to take Gore’s advice: “If [the Democratic candidates for President] listen to former vice president Al Gore … they will all go off the cliff.”

This week’s “Braying Jackass” award: “The Bush Administration isn’t conservative Republicanism, and it’s not radical Republicanism – it’s extreme libertarianism.” –John “Ketchup” Kerry

On the Left…

Big problems for California Democrats – and Republicans! Arnold Schwarzenegger has thrown the Demos into disarray. Front and center, and stealing a lot of thunder from the Leftist presidential wannabes, is the recall effort against California’s Gray Davis, who met with his new top political advisor this week, Bill Clinton, the “Great Prevaricator.” Clinton advised Davis to act like a governor (something that will be a stretch for Davis), make the issue the evil forces behind the recall effort rather than his own pathetic leadership, and don’t mix it up with Arnold Schwarzenegger, who will terminate you on the spot. “You continue to do the job, and you continue to tell people that you are doing the job,” advised Clinton, who perfected Adolf Hitler’s maxim: “The broad mass of a nation…will more easily fall victim to a big lie than a small one. The greater the lie, the greater chance that it will be believed.”

Memo to Gray: As we recall, when your new political advisor was elected in 1992, Democrats had a 256-seat majority in the House, a 56-seat majority in the Senate and controlled 35 state legislatures and 28 governorships. By the end of the Clinton regime, Democrats had lost control of both the House and the Senate, the state legislatures and there were 30 GOP governors.

Schwarzenegger, rumored to be a fiscal conservative, is a “nonobservant” Catholic (of the “Kennedy variety”) on social issues. He is an advocate of abortion and homosexual marriage, including adoption by homosexual parents. (Apparently Arnold did not get the memo from the Pope last week on the moral obligation of public officials to oppose all such abominations.) On constitutional issues, he ranks right up there with Dianne Feinstein – calling for things like “sensible” gun control.

Here is a sampler of “Arnoldisms” that should give pause to any Republicans caught up in the mania: “We spent one year wasting time [on the impeachment and trial of Bill Clinton] because there was a human failure. I was ashamed to call myself a Republican during that period.” (Schwarzenegger also stated he’d “never forgive” the Republican Party for successfully impeaching Clinton.)

“…[I]n reality, I’m for gun control. I’m a peace-loving guy.”

“I will fight for the environment. Nothing to worry about.”

“At the moment, they’re dealing with it [cloning] by putting the religious spin on it. …[T]here are some people who are religiously fanatic, that feel uncomfortable with it. But I think that’s also a mistake.”

“I have no sexual standards in my head that say this is good or this is bad. ‘Homosexual’ – that only means to me that he enjoys sex with a man and I enjoy sex with a woman. It’s all legitimate to me.”

“You have to understand I am internally conflicted. I have an Austrian upbringing, but an adult life in California.”

From the “Non Compos Mentis” Files…

From the “human shield” front, Florida resident Ms. Faith Fippinger, who joined 20 other traitors in Iraq last February to serve Saddam, received notice from the U.S. Department of the Treasury that she owes $10,000 in fines and could face up to 12 years in prison for violating trade and travel sanctions with Iraq. Fippinger responded, “Please be aware that I will not contribute money to the United States government to continue the buildup of its arsenal of weapons.” We suggest alternative sentencing – “hanging by the neck until dead”!

In faith matters…

Plenty of fallout this week from actions by the apostate Bishops of the Episcopal Church at their triennial convention last week. The World Anglican Communion (those everywhere but Western Europe) strongly objected to the confirmation of a practicing homosexual as the next Bishop of New Hampshire. Anglican leaders in Africa, Asia, South America and Australia are protesting. “It’s wrong and it’s against the Bible,” said Bishop Joseph Kanuku of Kenya. “How can we go against God’s words? Two men being joined is contrary to nature and contrary to the Bible. We stand with the Bible. When we are wrong, those in the West should tell us. We are telling them this is wrong.”

Closer to home, the Rev. Steven Randall at St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church in Catonsville, Maryland, expressed the sentiments of the remaining faithful in the Episcopal Church: “…[The U.S. Episcopal Church] will carry more people to hell than it will save. It is a flying coffin doomed to destruction and despair.” Like many congregations, St. Timothy’s plans to withhold all funding for the Church hierarchy.

A concise essay on the subject, “Homosexual Normalization and the Church:

Perspective from a Fifth-Generation Episcopalian” by The Federalist’s editor, Mark Alexander, can be read at –

A famous Anglican, George Washington, said, “The blessed Religion revealed in the word of God will remain an eternal and awful monument to prove that the best Institution may be abused by human depravity and…made subservient to the vilest purposes.” Indeed!

Around the world…

We are shocked – SHOCKED – to report that Evil Axis club member Mohammad Khatami, Iran’s President, says he will not let the U.S. interview any al-Qa'ida terrorists detained (read “hosted”) by Iranian security forces. Mohammad said he would extradite some al-Qa'ida Jihadis to “friendly countries” like, oh, Saudi Arabia.

Libya ended 14 years of denial this week, and accepted “civil” responsibility for the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, on Dec. 21, 1988, which killed 270 people. The operation was run by Libyan intelligence officer Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi, who was convicted in a Scottish court two years ago. For a decade, Libyan terror-chief Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi targeted U.S. interests, but after the first Gulf War he tucked in his tail, fearing he was next. In an effort to get the UN and U.S. to lift sanctions, Muammar will pay $2.7 billion into a fund for the victims’ families.

Many of the victims’ families object to the fund and want to see Muammar brought to justice. Dan Cohen, father of PA103 victim Theodora Cohen, protests, “What this is really about is this is a payoff. You want to call it blood money. You want to call it a business deal. This is the cost of Qaddafi doing business.”

In Liberia, 200 U.S. Marines are joining West African peacekeepers to help secure the flow of food and aid to that nation’s starving people.

And last…

Singer and American Patriot Charlie Daniels had a few choice words for those who have forgotten that our nation is at war with a worldwide terror network – Jihadistan: “Why, you bunch of pitiful, hypocritical, idiotic, spoiled mug-wumps. Get your heads out of the sand and smell the Twin Towers.”

It's Right. It's Free.