Monday, September 25, 2017

The German Elections: Dead Man's Curve

The German Elections are over, and the German people mostly voted for the status quo. And in that word 'mostly' lies a possibility that rather than crashing and burning, Germany might just manage to avoid suicide and remain a western, European nation.

Angela Merkel did indeed win a fourth term, but with the worst result for her party, the CDU/CSU Union since 1949, and one that assures that in order to govern, she will need coalition partners. And that won't be all that easy to assemble. Even worse for her is a possible splintering of the long standing CDU/CSU party...and the surprisingly strong showing of the Right in the form of Alternative für Deutschland (AFD). Here are the numbers:

Mutti Merkel will need 316 seats to govern. Let's look at who these parties are...

The Union is the CDU (Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands, Christian Democratic Union of Germany) , in union with the CSU (Christlich-Soziale Union in Bayern, Christian Social Union in Bavaria). The CSU is to the right of the CDU, although both are pro-EU. And the CSU is seriously talking about a split, since they're concerned how Merkel's stance on unlimited Muslim migration will effect them in their Bavarian stronghold. The CSU dropped from 49% to 38.5% thanks to Merkel, and have already announced a turn to the right, particularly regarding Muslim migration.

The SPD is the Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands, Social Democratic Party of Germany). It's a party of the Left that supports socialism, is pro-EU and has already said it will not join a coalition with Merkel. The Social Democrats and their candidate Martin Schulz came in a distant second, with a post-war record low of 21 percent.

Die Linke, as you can gather from its name is a far Left party that includes the former German communist party (PDS). They're an unlikely partner for Merkel.

Grüne (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen, Alliance 90/The Greens) is a very Left party with enviro-politics as their major focus. They might be prepared to do a deal with Merkel for the right price.

The FDP (Freie Demokratische Partei, Free Democratic Party) —are more centrist and champion free market economics and traditional classic liberal freedoms, but are also pro-EU. Again, a possible partner for Merkel for the right price.

And finally, AFD (Alternative für Deutschland, Alternative for Germany) — Anti-EU, nationalist and very much against Merkel's continued importation of Muslim migrants to Germany. This is the first them they have passed the threshold of votes needed to get them into the Bundestag, Germany's Parliament. and while the chart lists them last, in terms of seats they have now gone on to become Germany's third largest party. They not only won't work with Merkel, they have pledged to oppose her at every turn. As AFD Leader Alexander Gauland said last night when the returns came in, "We will chase Mrs. Merkel, and we will take our country and our people back!”

By gaining seats in the Bundestag, AFD has dramatically boosted its visibility and qualifies for state financing.

AFD's rise is even more astonishing when you realize that the party was essentially split between an unapologetic right wing party led by Gauland and Alice Weidel and a more moderate wing headed by Frauke Petry, who helped form the party in 2013. If AFD had been united, their results might have been even more stunning.

In fact, Frauke Petry announced just after the election that she would sit in the Bundestag as an independent in opposition AFD's future will depend on whether the party continues to splinter or is able to unify over its core issues without being distracted.

The Left's reaction to AFD's success was quite typical. Rent-a-mobs in Leipzig tried to storm the town hall, where votes were still being counted, and where the AFD was holding their election party.

The same thing occurred in Berlin where another AFD election party was being held, and elsewhere, with protesters screaming things like 'Nazis Aus!' waving signs, breaking windows and generally acting out.

Unsurprising, since the German press (largely Left leaning) branded AFD as Nazis, and even German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel and other Merkelites made the idea of "real Nazis" entering the Bundestag a real issue during the campaign.

Are the AFD Nazis? While some of them likely lean in that direction and have questionable views on certain subjects, I'd have to say generally speaking that this is more a typical case of Leftist hypocrisy and frankly, projection. After all, there were no AFD brown shirts trying to violently storm CDU/CSU events! Nor does AFD regurgitate the Nazi's economic views, which were frankly socialist.

The election itself basically revolved around two main themes. Merkel is seen as the comfortable status quo. Germany is still prosperous, and a lot of its graying population (more than half of the 61 million voters are aged 52 or older) saw Merkel as a symbol of stability.

The other theme is the simple fact that many Germans feel unsafe in their own country. Women in particular are uneasy walking alone at night, riding the trains or using public swimming pools for obvious reasons. Whole areas in German cities are becoming no-go areas for non-Muslims, and the tax money needed to support the Muslim migrants is taking a huge bite out of German wallets. Many people are simply fed up, and the election results show that as well.

The German elections show a nation negotiating Dead Man's curve. If Germany continues its skid towards destruction, it will end up with Muslims ruling it under sharia as one of the most important countries in Europe literally falls to invasion. Ironically, given how Merkel touts it, that would also lead to the end of the EU, something that's pretty close to happening anyway since many nations in the EU aren't going along with the diktats of Merkel and her minions in Brussels when it comes to doing to their countries what Germany and Sweden have done to theirs.

If the Germans decide that enough is enough, if the AFD remains united and goes more mainstream, if Germany reaches a consensus on the harm Merkel's allowing a surge of Muslim migrants into Germany has done, they may yet make the turn on Dead Man's Curve and save their country.

In that case, this year's German elections may be the beginning of Germany's return to sanity.

And Mutti Merkel? She will likely end up a Chancellor again, but her term will be anything but smooth. I'd be very surprised if she finishes it.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

An American In Babylon - Trump's UN Speech


President Trump's UN speech attracted a fair amount of controversy among the chattering classes. It shouldn't have.

The United Nations has become a byword for useless, dysfunctional bureaucracy a mere 72 years after its founding.

Like Belshazzar's feast, it spends lavishly and conducts itself with opulence, but is rotted through with corruption and does little of any value while squatting in mordant self satisfaction.

Leave it to President Donald J. Trump to point out the wrong direction the UN has traveled since its founding in the aftermath of two devastating world wars, and to challenge it to change direction and become the force for good it was intended to be.

The president called for the UN and its members to reverse course, and to become what the UN was supposed to become on its inception...a group of sovereign, independent nations who prized freedom, democracy and peace and were willing to work together to promote them and to take action against rogue nations who threatened those ideals. If you read the original UN charter, you get a sense of just how far the UN today has removed itself from what it says.

Scandals like 'oil for food' where even the Secretary General's son was implicated in money laundering for Saddam Hussein to avoid UN sanctions abound. Countries like Iran routinely threaten genocide. And violate with impunity even UN Security Council series 7 resolutions like UNSC 1701, which called for the disarming of terrorist group Hezbollah and prohibiting UN members from rearming them. Iran and Syria rearmed Hezbollah without incurring any penalty whatsoever.

UN peacekeeping forces are more noted for trading food supplies for enforced prostitution, ignoring their supposed duties and allowing violence against civilians than for fulfilling their actual missions.

That's exactly why President Trump quoted Harry Truman, who stressed that the success of the United Nations depended on the “independent strength of its members.”

And unlike his predecessor, President Trump was unafraid to voice this simple truth;

“The United States of America,” Trump said, “has been among the greatest forces for good in the history of the world, and the greatest defenders of sovereignty, security, and prosperity for all.”

And our president was equally honest about confronting thoe rogue nations who threaten peace and security. He called out the disgusting regime of Kim Jong-un in North Korea, saying thatthe patience of the United States is great, but not inexhaustible. Asthe president explained, If North Korea persists in its policy of nuclear blackmail, the United States “will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea.” He continued: “Rocket Man is on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime.”

Needless to say, the Leftist press worldwide fainted away collectively at that. But what President Trump said was the simple truth. The same is true about what President Trump had to say about the equally rogue, criminal regime of Iran, one of the world's biggest sponsors of terrorism, a foe of America who was openly complicit in 9/11.

The UN's ignoring of the Iranian regime's march towards nuclear weapons is so ingrained that they aren't even making an attempt to have it look like they're doing something. Not only has Iran has prohibited the UN from any inspection of their military facilities where there's been clear indications of manufacturing and testing nuclear weapons components, but the IAEA, the UN's nuclear watchdog now allows Iran to self inspect their nuclear facilities that the UN is allowed to get a glimpse of. To accuse the IAEA and the UN of gross negligence whenit comes to Iran is a gross understatement.

You see, President Trump wasn't just giving a display of American resolve. This was a direct challenge to the UN, plain and simple. The UN, after all is supposed to be the forum where dangerous regimes like Iran and North Korea are supposed to be addressed and dealt with. While Trump was quite clear that America could handle these rogue regimes on their own, He said it would be far better if the UN actually did what it was supposed to do and dealt with these major threats to world peace. “If the righteous many do not confront the wicked few,” Trump said in another memorable line, “then evil will triumph.”

Trump even had the intestinal fortitude to address Socialism.

No ideology has ever been so discredited by the evidence of history, but like a serially cheating wife or husband still offers hope to a long suffering spouse that this time, it will really be different. Except, of course, it never is.

Trump used the UN's failure to address the human tragedy now going on in Venezuela, once one of the richest countries on earth where Maduro's socialist regime is literally starving its population to death. It wasn't so long ago the Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders and other Leftists were using Hugo Chavez and Venezuela as an example of how well socialism could work. Now, as the once rich country descends into poverty and chaos, they don't mention Venezuela any more.

“The problem in Venezuela,” Trump said, “is not that socialism has been poorly implemented, but that socialism has been faithfully implemented.”

So how did President Trump's speech go over? To most of the delegates of the UN, not very well. Being publicly unmasked like that is the last thing they wanted, let alone being challenged to make the UN what it was created to be. And of course, Trump's usual political enemies in the press and in the Democrat party went predictably ballistic. But as usual, the president has hit another bulls eye when it come to talking to the American people and to friends of freedom everywhere.

Speaking truth to power is a Leftist cliche', but that is exactly what President Trump's UN speech did, in one of his finest moments.

Monday, September 18, 2017

WoW! Forum: Is Pro Football Committing Slow Suicide?

Every week on Monday, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher's Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's Question: Is Pro Football Committing Slow Suicide?

Don Surber:Pro football is the most popular television entertainment in America. Its annual Super Bowl conclusion draws "Beatles on Ed Sullivan" level ratings.

But as is happening throughout the TV business, the Internet threatens this cash cow.

Also, the self-indulgent sit-downs by players corrodes the civic bond between the core fan base and the team. Browns fans stay with a lousy team because its first name is Cleveland. But watching a team with no prayer to win is depressing. Sitting down gave fans a plausible and justifiable excuse to watch something else. Loyalty is a two-way street.

So yes, the sitdowns and the politicization of the game harm the NFL.

But on the horizon is the pending collapse of ESPN, which will imperil college football greatly, and the NFL to a lesser extent. Right now, ESPN is an ATM providing billions (through those $6 a month cable fees charged every cable subscriber -- on average) to the NFL and the various college conferences. The broadcast networks pay for broadcast rights as well. But ESPN's money at the collegiate level is ginormous. Cable cutters are punting ESPN revenues.

Disney would love to spin off ESPN.

The coming reduction in the college schedule may ease the saturation of the game. It is almost to the level of pro wrestling, pro boxing, and quiz shows in the 1950s that brought their collapses
But one overlooked factor is the pro game itself. It is getting dull. I watched the Thursday night game (Bengals hosted Houston). The first four possessions in the game were three-and-outs. The final score was 13-9. Sixty minutes, one touchdown.

Might be the teams. Houston scored 7 in its opening game and Cincinnati was shutout.
But defense dominates the league. This makes for boring television.

The bottom line is pro football suffers from cable cutting, saturation, and a dulling of the game. Grandstanding by fading quarterbacks does not help.

If I were the commissioner, I would seek the union's help in stopping the antics.

To make the game more fun, bring back marching bands at halftime, and adopt the Canadian football rules.

Fausta Rodriquez Wertz: Unfortunately, I don't watch pro football, only my college alma mater's games.

Rob Miller: My introduction to American-style football was in grade school. There was a park next to the school with a large grassy area, and that's where we'd meet after school or on the weekends to play unsupervised  tackle (anything else would have been beneath us at that age)  with a football and no other equipment whatsoever. It was a definite rite of passage, one I'm sure I shared with a lot of American males of a certain age. Aside from bloody noses, scraped knees and elbows and the odd cut or bruise here and there, nobody got hurt and anyone who made a big deal out of something like that would have been regarded with contempt and derision. We learned to tough it out, to play hard but fair and to take pride in winning.  So I think there's something in what Bookworm said about what's going on with pro football now to be part of an attack by the Left on American masculinity.

I also think there's another component.

Back in the days when the Jews actually ran Hollywood, most of what they produced extolled American values...patriotism, competitiveness, and yes, religious morality, no matter how the moguls might have behaved in their private lives. Since most of them were either immigrants or the children of immigrants, their mostly idealized version of Americana was to be expected. And every motion picture contract contained a 'morals clause,' which would allow the studios to terminate anyone whose actions reflected badly on the studio. As the studios went corporate and the old studio system collapsed, not only did the inmates take over the asylum, but the new generation of decision makers that were part of the Boomer generation began to share their values. That process has continued ad nauseum, and the results are obvious. I'm always amused when Hollywood is so surprised when a movie that emphasizes the traditional values Hollywood used to present does well.

What's happening in pro football is another example. And unfortunately, we can't ignore the racial component either. After 8 years of Barack Hussein Obama, racialist politics and craven political correctness are to be expected. When you tell people constantly that they're victims, is it any wonder they embrace it, no matter how privileged they actually are? Or that coaches and owners, indoctrinated in the same manner would cave in and go along, no matter what it costs them financially?

So yeah...slow suicide.

Side note: I'm pretty familiar with Canadian football, from my time in Canada. It is a much faster and wide open game, with three downs, and a much wider field. I doubt it would help unless the same sort of people were running it and similar standards applied. When dog torturer Michael Vick was shopping for a contract after he got out of jail, his agent first  contacted 6 different Canadian teams, figuring they would be an easier sell. Every one of them turned him down, saying explicitly that someone like Michael Vick was not who they wanted representing them in any capacity.

The NFL? They were happy to have him back.

Patrick O'Hannigan : I agree with Don that pro football is committing slow suicide, although I'm not sure his proposed solutions (marching bands at halftime and Canadian rules) will be enough to reverse the slide.

I do think the professional game has suffered because of the increased emphasis on rules that protect franchise players (typically quarterbacks), the ongoing dominance of defense despite constraints on defenders, and the injection of politics into the game by players, owners, and commentators.

I don't think the players' union does enough to emphasize the importance of character and "brand maintenance." For example, I know from advertisements that the NFL fights childhood obesity (that's the point of the whole "Play 60" campaign), and supports charities under the United Way umbrella. Yet not every United Way charity is equally worthwhile, and the "Play 60" campaign can sound like hectoring in an environment where the federal government was recently and deeply involved in telling smaller bureaucracies what could and could not be in school lunches. The menu thing was not the NFL's fault, but what the NFL does feels like piling on -- the subtext is "Be healthy!" (rather than, for example, "Be good!" or "Learn some history!").

"Give back" is nice shorthand for why community service matters, but too few people stop to ask about what professional athletes (or the rest of us) are supposed to give back. Presumably that's more than "entertainment value for the fan dollar," as honorable as that is. And it's long past time for the NFL to stop virtue signaling every October by using pink gear to promote breast cancer awareness month. Did domestic violence prevention not find a hue of its own on the color wheel? That charitable endeavor probably hits closer to home (irony intended) than the NFL would like to admit.

Every NFL season seems to feature human interest stories about players doing good things (think of Houston's J.J. Watt spearheading hurricane relief efforts), players whose on-field performance seems not to justify their salaries, and players who are basically athletic felons. Two of those three groups flunk the "role model" test, and yet the NFL doesn't seem to care.

Doug Hagin : The NFL has issues. In no certain order

Officials who screw up calls because they apparently do not know the rules

Ridiculous penalties against celebrations, although the league has relaxed them

A system of punishing players who break rules that has no consistency, other than trying to do what the commissioner thinks will be the right optic.

The preseason, which is unwatchable and only serves to see more star players injured in meaningless games.

Far too many awful games. The NFL has been dumbed down. We now have a handful of really good teams, a handful of lousy teams, and a lot of mediocre teams.

Bottom line the product on the field is not that great.

Bookworm Room :
I'm quite ambivalent about pro-football, going back to my childhood with a German father who thought (a) that football was a meaningless, slow, brutish game compared to soccer and (b) that the way in which the pro-teams traded players was akin to chattel slavery. He also could not understand a "home" team that had no players actually from that home.

I eventually introduced myself to football in high school because the band was required to attend all home games. Since then, I've liked football, but I've never been fanatic about it. I've always supported my home team -- the 49ers -- especially during the amazing Joe Montana and Steve Young years. I managed to be out of town or the country for most of their Super Bowl wins, but I celebrated from afar.

Speaking of afar, the 49ers have moved to Santa Clara and, frankly, they're dead to me now.

So yes, as fan, I've been ambivalent about the game.

As a parent I've also been ambivalent. My kids preferred soccer, so I never had to worry about a child begging to join the team. However, those parents I know who had sons wanting to join the team lived in terror of concussions. We all know now that concussions are not just bumps on the head that leave the player seeing stars, a la a cartoon. Instead, they are serious brain injuries that can lead to increasing damage with every blow.

Before anyone says anything, I know that other sports have that problem. A fast baseball hits as hard as a speeding car; soccer players use their heads on somewhat softer balls, but balls that still fly just as fast; cheerleading is the most dangerous sport of all; and a swimmer who mistimes a turn can end up concussed too.

It's only with football, though, that players intentionally use their heads as battering rams. Ironically, in the old days, when they were protected only with leather helmets, players actually tried to keep their heads out of the crush. As helmets became more hi-tech -- and, therefore, were perceived as safer -- players began to put their heads at risk. Aside from the head injuries, there are also the pile-ups, when several men built of solid muscle, and weighing well over 200 pounds each, compete with each other to take a player down.

Separate from the risk factor, I'm always impressed by pro-football players. In the pre-season, I watch Hard Knocks, one of the few worthwhile shows on HBO. Every year, it follows one pro-team through pre-season training. The level of commitment the players bring to the game is amazing and inspiring. In another era, these men would have been knights, jousting and practicing sword thrusts (and getting injured that way too). Today, if these warriors aren't into X Sports (also super dangerous) or military service, they take their muscle and discipline to the football field.

Watching the punishing practice, the off-field regimen, and the chronic dislocation of their lives, I don't begrudge the pro-players their salaries. They have a short career, and end with trashed bodies and, if they're unlucky, trashed brains too.

It's a free country, and if they want to do this for money, let them. On the other hand, just as I probably wouldn't have wanted to watch gladiators fight to the death in ancient Rome, despite the fact that the winners were major celebrities, I'm not comfortable watching today's men bash their brains in for my entertainment. It's just not my thing.

Which gets us to the big question: will Americans still pay money to see these sports warriors? Colin Kaepernick's kneeling antics have given us a preview of the answer to that question, which is that, if these athletes offend the audience's core values, no, Americans will not.

Moreover, those who tune out of the game in disgust are pleasantly surprised to discover that there's a world out there waiting for them that's not chained to the TV and accompanied by a steady diet of beer and truck commercials. I think that, even if the NFL were to clamp down on the players' disrespect for a national symbol, many people will still stay away. Like many addicts, they'll have figured out that life is better without the addiction.

ESPN isn't helping matters, of course. As is true for all New York-based media, its people cannot keep politics from oozing into things. ESPN's core audience may be willing to live and let live when it comes to Bruce Jennings, but they're not going to be really impressed when he gets an award for going public with his mental illness. Likewise, they don't care about Michael Sam's personal life. Either he's a good football player or he's not. Celebrating his bedroom behavior is irrelevant and therefore offensive.

The final straw for ESPN's core demographic, though, is going to be the network's embrace of the Social Justice Warrior ethos, whether that means bashing Trump or white people. It's not urban pajama boys or pink-hatted women who are watching football.

It's the same middle American group that looked at the Left's retreat from sanity and said, "Whoa!" That audience probably won't come back either. As with the core NFL demographic, they'll discover that life is better when they spend less time in front of the boob tube and more time actually doing things -- such as a friendly game of Saturday morning football with their neighbors.

The beautiful irony of this is that SJWs are in the forefront of attacking football. I presume this is because football is a game that celebrates manly virtues and is therefore offensive to true SJWs who, whether genetically male or female, are united in their war against masculinity.

My final answer: We are witnessing the slow death of pro football.

Laura Rambeau Lee : Pro football seems to be committing slow suicide much the same as America is committing slow suicide. It would be surprising if the owners and managers even realize their organizations are being manipulated by the left in their agenda to destroy us by destroying our culture and traditions. And football is unarguably an American tradition.

We have liberal doctors advancing the agenda by reporting about the dangers of concussions in their effort to eliminate the game. It surely should come as no surprise to the athletes playing a violent sport where their bodies are routinely battered that they might experience permanent damage. As in many professions people go into them aware of the risks and rewards. Is being a professional football player any more dangerous that being a soldier, law enforcement officer, fireman, or the amazing linemen we saw this past week coming into the state of Florida to get power back to all of us as quickly as possible? One thing is certain; football players make a heck of a lot more money over their careers which are a lot shorter than any of the others.

And then there are the “useful idiot” players participating in the issue du jour by taking a knee during the playing of the national anthem in support of BLM and against law enforcement. These players have had the most fortunate opportunity to go to college on a full ride scholarship and if lucky to play at the professional level earning millions of dollars, yet they show complete and utter disrespect for the country that afforded them these opportunities. They also appear more concerned with getting the personal recognition or notoriety than about the issue they profess to support.

We are most certainly at a turning point in America. The left has been working for decades within our education system to turn our children and youth against their own country. Our nationalism and patriotism are the biggest challenge to the progressive agenda for a global government or New World Order. We are truly the last best hope to thwart this agenda. There are many more patriots – and football fans – than they realize. This was confirmed with the election of President Trump. They just may have misjudged their success in changing the hearts and minds of the people towards embracing their socialist agenda and against the capitalism and freedom that has made America great.

If the left had waited another decade they might have been successful in destroying America. They were so certain Hillary Clinton would win the presidential election and they could continue their agenda of divisiveness, social justice, and manufactured chaos. We are extremely fortunate enough Americans went to the polls and voted against Hillary Clinton whether they understood her role in this agenda or not. The fact that Trump won the presidency gives me hope the progressive agenda will not stand. There are many more patriots in America than the left ever imagined. The elites in the media and politicians on the east and west coast discounted the true heart of America.

As to the question about whether football is committing suicide – go Steelers!

Well, there it is!

Make sure to drop by every Monday for the WoW! Magazine Forum. And enjoy WoW! Magazine 24-7 with some of the best stuff written in the 'net. Take from me, you won't want to miss it.

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

A Humane And Fair Solution For DACA

 Image result for dreamers demand their rights

DACA, as most of you might know, stands for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. It was a policy President Barack Hussein Obama implemented by executive order. It allows allows illegal immigrants who entered the country as minors, to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and makes them eligible to legally work in the United States.

DACA was presented by the former president and his allies in the press as both just and humane. After all, these 'Dreamers,' to use the catchy label coined by the president and the policy's exponents, had come here as children, this was the only country they knew and of course they should be allowed to stay, shouldn't they?

But that was only the beginning. The president's next step, in November 2014 was DAPA (Deferred Action For Parents of Americans) which was supposed to give a similar de facto amnesty to parents of the Dreamers. That led to a major influx of unaccompanied minors coming across our borders, mostly male teenagers or in some cases older and posing as teenagers. The idea was to get here, get Dreamer or refugee status and then, send for the rest of the family including Auntie, Grandpa, distant cousins and pretty much anyone else thanks to America's very lenient family reunification programs.

DAPA was merely announced by President Obama. It wasn't even dignified by a Presidential executive order, nor even a regulatory ruling. The President may have misplaced his pen, because he simply announced it, and that was that,banana republic style. A few months later, in response to lawsuits from several states, an injunction was issued stopping the DAPA program in February 2015, and President Trump finally put an end to it in 2017.

So what is to be done about DACA?
The Pew Trust,whose numbers may be somewhat inflated says that 1.7 million people might be eligible, although U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) only has received about 850,000 applications. As an aside, each application costs $450, and that amounts to a total of $382,500,000. I'd certainly like to know where that money went, wouldn't you?

President Trump has announced he is considering ending DACA. Part of his motivation is an agreement he made with 19 State Attorney generals to postpone a pending lawsuit declaring DACA illegal and unconstitutional (which it actually is) and demanding redress from the Federal Government for state funds expended because of it. The president asked them to hold off until he has a chance to study the issue a bit more. But as these states have informed the president, their patience is running out.

There are several ways this could go. The President could keep the program in force in exchange for things he wants from congress like tax reform, and ObamaCare repeal and funding for his budget. But if he does, he will lose political support from his base and get no credit from the pro amnesty Left anyway, as well as dealing with that lawsuit. Or he can curtail it,in which case he loses nothing, because the pro amnesty Left and their RINO allies will throw a tantrum no matter what he does.

The fact is that DACA is illegal. It is yet another piece of fallout from America's refusal to protect its borders and base immigration on its needs rather than allowing a tsunami of illegal migration.

On the other hand, there undoubtedly are illegal migrants who were brought here as young children illegally and consider this their home. It would be tremendously unjust to give these migrants preference simply because of their proximity to our border over the many people who want to come here and are stuck in the bureaucratic nightmare that involves. An illegal migrant is still an illegal migrant, not an 'immigrant.'

Still, I think there's actually a solution to this problem that works as far as respecting America's migration laws, retaining fairness for legal migrants and addressing the humanitarian issue posed by some DREAMers.

First of all, DACA needs to be ended. There's no question that it's both illegal and unjust. And even worse, holds people in limbo, so it solves nothing.

Some of the DREAMers could be allowed to stay under certain conditions. They would have to be able to document 10 years residency in the United States from what I call unimpeachable sources; school records, health records, employment records, DMV records if available,tax returns, that sort of thing.

They would be of good character, have committed no crimes,not be members of any questionable groups or organizations,  have learned to speak English, and not be on public assistance. They would not be eligible for U.S. citizenship but would receive a special permanent residence permit that would allow them to live and work in America.The citizenship restriction would not apply to illegal migrants who have served in our military and who otherwise qualify.

And it should clearly be understood that this residence permit is a one time act of clemency, not an entitlement or precedent. If necessary, legislation would need to be passed clarifying this.

 Related image

As non-citizens, they would not be allowed participation in any family reunification program to bring relatives to America from overseas, to hold public office or to vote.

While it might be wise to put a numerical quota on these residence permits, I believe that anywhere from 30-50% of the DREAMers would qualify to stay in America should they choose to. It would mean they have forfeited certain rights given to legal migrants, but that they could continue to live in America.

Monday, September 04, 2017

WoW! Forum - Should DACA Be Ended?

Every week on Monday, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher's Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's Question
: Should DACA Be Ended?

Don Surber: We need to go back to having Congress pass laws, and presidents upholding them.

Sadly, we now live in a post-judicial world in which the courts oppose enforcing immigration law because the judges know better than we do. All of Washington does. They dare not reform immigration law because we deplorable people will not stand for it.

And so they rewrite it without ever being held accountable. DACA is an unconstitutional overstep of presidential authority.

There is no DREAM Act either. Never voted on.

And yet they are treated as law. I do not understand it. The judges want Joe Arpaio in jail, and the courts struck down Arizona SB 1070. Why? Because the federal judges do not want real laws upheld.
Just fantasy ones. Fake Laws like DACA and DREAM.

Yes, end DACA.

Dave Schuler : Yes. IMO mercy requires that some reasonable accommodation be arrived at for illegal immigrants brought here as children and who've never known any home other than the United States. But such a program should be implemented via the ordinary legislative process rather than by executive order.

  Rob Miller:I pretty much said what I had to say about this here. There's a legal, humane and just solution for this problem interested parties can read  at the link.

There are a couple of points I think bear repeating. First, let's remember that many of the DREAMers didn't come here as young, unknowing children. A lot of them came here as unaccompanied teenaged males (or even older, but posing as teenagers to qualify) after President Obama expanded DACA  and foisted DAPA on the American people  in 2014 to legalize illegal migrant parents without even bothering to craft an executive order. El Jefe spoke and that was that.  The idea was for the unaccompanied minors to be accepted as 'refugees' or DREAMers and then bring mom, dad, auntie, the cousins and who know who else under America's generous family unification rules.

Second, giving certain illegal migrants preferred status just because of their proximity to our border, or because they belong to a certain demographic that is likely to vote for a certain political party is unjust. It discriminates against millions of people who would love to come to America LEGALLY  but are caught in the byzantine web of bureaucracy and are forced to spend large amounts of time and money coping with 'the system' many times for years.

Again, for those DREAMers who were actually brought here as young children, there's a fair, just and workable solution. I welcome your comments on it.

According to some recent reports, President Trump is going to kill DACA, but give Congress 6 months to craft a legislative solution. Ordinarily, it would be a welcome change from the days of El Jefe legislating from the Oval Office and illegally changing legislation whenever he felt like it. But given the number of amnesty favoring congress member of both parties, I doubt that whatever solution they throw together will be viable...or benefit the country.

Laura Rambeau Lee :With the stroke of his pen President Obama signed an executive order in June of 2012 creating the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA). DACA allows illegal immigrants who came to the United States as minors to receive a renewable two year period of deferred action from deportation and are eligible to obtain work permits. To qualify these persons must have entered the United States prior to their sixteenth birthday and before June 2007. They must be currently in school, a high school graduate, or be honorably discharged from the military. They cannot have any felony convictions or significant misdemeanors or be a threat to national security. DACA does not give them a path to citizenship. If President Obama had worked with Congress on real immigration reform instead of going it alone DACA might have been a part of such legislation.

Now President Trump faces the challenge of rescinding Obama’s illegal executive order. This could be his opportunity to get Congress to finally address the issue of illegal immigration. Perhaps he could allow DACA to stand for a limited period of time with a time certain end date while insisting Congress work together and craft a bill they can pass and he can sign into law. He could use this as leverage to get funding for the wall. Americans would be much more open to immigration reform and address the issue of the illegal immigrants already here if they saw a real effort to end illegal immigration.

We have already seen a significant decrease in those coming into the country illegally since President Trump was sworn into office. Perhaps something similar to DACA can be included as it seems a reasonable policy for the children who as minors were brought to the United States and grew up here. They are not the criminals, their parents or the people who brought them here committed the crime of illegal entry into the country. As for those who came here legally and overstayed their visas or who came here illegally in the first place the law should be made clear as to how we should deal with them. And the law should be enforced. First and foremost, anyone here illegally who has been convicted of a crime should be deported immediately. Perhaps those who have lived here for many years, who have not committed a felony, voted illegally, nor received public assistance could be given work permits and allowed to remain in the United States. They would have to leave for two weeks every year or be deported if they remain unemployed for over sixty days, the same as others who come here on a guest worker visa. They should NEVER have a path to citizenship nor be permitted to vote. This is their punishment for coming here illegally. If they desire a path to citizenship they must return to their home country and go through the proper channels for legal immigration.

Despite his portrayal by the main stream media as arrogant and heartless we have witnessed the compassion of President Trump. The entire country saw this in the past week as he visited the victims of Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Louisiana. The media found it hard to criticize his response to this devastating tragedy as he took control and set the tone for the rescue, recovery and relief efforts. We saw the stark contrast of people coming together as Americans and helping each other without concern for race or politics while the media continued to espouse their agenda of divisiveness to an ever decreasing audience.

Hopefully President Trump can build on the good will of the past week to encourage Congress to do their job and pass real immigration reform.

 Well, there it is!

Make sure to drop by every Monday for the WoW! Magazine Forum. And enjoy WoW! Magazine 24-7 with some of the best stuff written in the 'net. Take from me, you won't want to miss it.

Monday, August 28, 2017

WoW! Forum: What's The Future Of Marriage?

Every week on Monday, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher's Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's Question: What's The Future Of Marriage?

Dave Schuler : It's too early to tell. In the latest development of the great experiment we've been conducting over the period of the last couple of generations in redefining the fundamental building block of our society, the family, it has been decided that the interests of liberty and equality demand that we be unable to extend civil subsidies to traditional social arrangements without extending them to arrangements that fly in the face of tradition.

It may all work out. It may not.

 Rob Miller: Same sex marriage is by no means something new. Same sex marriage and similar arrangements were common in ancient Greece and Rome. There's a cogent argument that this had a negative effect on their societies, but that's irrelevant perhaps to the topic at hand which concerns our present day. 

I would draw a line between what I call traditional marriage, most of which has a religious background and secular civil marriage.  Traditional marriage will likely not change too much. Secular civil marriage is likely to have major changes, as well as making changes in our societies, many of them detrimental.

As I pointed out here, same sex marriage was what I call a spear point issue, meaning that it paved the way for a lot of other things  that were part of the agenda that it's proponents either weren't aware of, could care less about or simply wanted to hide.  It's no coincidence, for instance, that the majority of law professors who specialized in family law  were avid supporters of same sex marriage. Many of them even support the idea of replacing traditional life time marriage with short term renewable contracts as well as polygamy as called by its new name, polyamory. And why not? Imagine the fat fees lawyers stand to make for negotiating these contracts and their subsequent renewals or dissolutions!

We will undoubtedly see these kind of contracts, given the outsize influence predatory lawyers have when it comes to legislation.

It's also no coincidence that none of the major Muslim Brotherhood front groups like CAIR had little public criticism on same sex marriage, in spite of what the Qur'an says about homosexuals. Can you think of a better way to ultimately get Sharia compliant polygamy,child marriages and temporary 'bought' marriages (we generally refer to them as prostitution or  one night stands in America)  legal and on the books?  

After all, once you legally change the definition of marriage, it can pretty much consist of anything people can dream up. Imagine two businessmen in partnership deciding to 'marry' in order to take advantage of certain tax laws, even if they already married to women. Why not? What legal grounds would there be to deny them? How dare we discriminate!

And as AI and robotics become more and more sophisticated, does anyone doubt that if present trends continue (and they may not), there could eventually be civil marriages between human and machine?

Laura Rambeau Lee : For centuries Western civilization had defined marriage as a union between one man and one woman. This is no longer the case. While several states passed laws with overwhelming majorities attempting to keep the definition of marriage as between one man and one woman, in 2015 the Supreme Court overturned our votes and ruled that we must allow same sex marriages. Many of us embraced the idea of civil unions for gay couples affording them all of the rights and obligations of a heterosexual married couple but wished to keep the term marriage confined to what we have understood it to be and represent. I was against same sex marriages, not because of their wish to be recognized as a couple but because marriage is now undefined rather than redefined. Will this progression stop at same sex marriages or will bigamy and polygamy be allowed in the future?

Now that same sex couples have legally married we will see how this plays out as some will inevitably attempt to divorce. Marriage laws are primarily to protect property and children. It is not so easy once the bond of marriage has been legally established and recognized by the state to dissolve the relationship. That which has been sanctioned by the state must also be dissolved by the state.

While all this redefinition of marriage is happening at the urging of progressives in an attempt to undermine Western culture and civilization, the good news is marriage will continue to be the foundation upon which families are built. Human beings understand the intrinsic value of one man and one woman coming together and committing themselves to each other, to declare their love for one another publicly, and to raise their families. It is the natural order of things and will continue to be in spite of those who seek to destroy it.

Well, there it is!

Make sure to drop by every Monday for the WoW! Magazine Forum. And enjoy WoW! Magazine 24-7 with some of the best stuff written in the 'net. Take from me, you won't want to miss it.

An Important New Development InThe MidEast Peace Process.

President Trump and Jared Kushner have actually made some progress towards achieving a Mideast peace agreement between Israel and the PLO. The progress mainly consists of shifting the entire context around. I still ultimately doubt it will be successful as long as The PLO/Fatah and Hamas are involved, but just doing that much is significant achievement..and it may just actually yield some results.

If you’ve been following the latest developments in the Mideast peace process, you know that Jared Kushner just met again yesterday with the Palestinian Authority’s leader Mahmoud Abbas. Unlike their last meeting, when Kushner insisted that the PA had to give up inciting and financing terrorist attacks on Israel, this one didn’t end in a shouting match between them.

Abbas and the other PA functionaries made polite noises this time.

“We highly appreciate President Trump’s efforts to strike a historical peace deal, a statement he repeated more than one time during our meetings in Washington, Riyadh and Bethlehem,” Abbas said at the start of his meeting with Kushner, according to the PA’s official Wafa news agency.

“We know that this delegation is working for peace, and we are working with it to achieve what President Trump has called a peace deal. We know that things are difficult and complicated, but there is nothing impossible with good efforts,” he added.

Well, except for this. The Palestinians, as they wish to be called are very frustrated by one thing.

When it comes to the peace process, they’re used to being catered to, and being offered what they demand while giving little or nothing in return as concessions. They’re also used to it being a fait accompli, an established fact that there is going to be a two state solution that gives them all or most of Judea and Samaria with their capitol in Jerusalem.

The Trump administration has backed away from guaranteeing that no matter what, an important shift in the context.

“We have clearly emphasized to the Americans the importance of having a public statement that has a commitment to the two-state solution,” Ashraf Khatib, a spokesman for the negotiation affairs department of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), told the Washington Post on Friday. “There hasn’t been any.”

Nor will there be for now, as State Department Spokeswoman Heather Nauert explained earlier this week. The always unworkable two state solution has been sidelined for now and won’t be automatically put back on the table without significant concessions by the PLO. Or as Ms. Nauert politely put it, “Committing to a two-state solution would “bias” the outcome of a peace agreement between Israel and the PA.”

“We want to work toward a peace that both sides can agree to and that both sides find sustainable. We believe that both parties should be able to find a workable solution that works for both of them.”
“We are not going to state what the outcome has to be. It has to be workable to both sides. And I think, really, that’s the best view as to not really bias one side over the other, to make sure that they can work through it. It’s been many, many decades, as you well know, that the parties have not been able to come to any kind of good agreement and sustainable solution to this. So we leave it up to them to be able to work that through.”

Or to put it more bluntly, President Trump isn’t going to make Israel ‘negotiate’ with a loaded gun to its head and a preconceived outcome.

For perhaps the first time in the history of the Mideast peace process, the PLO is being told that if they want a state, they’re going to have to convince the Israelis to go along with it. That’s going to mean significant concessions. And even then, it might not mean statehood. it might just end up being an autonomous enclave.

This is a major change. Obstruction and stonewalling by Abbas and company is not going to work any longer. They will have to deal to get what they want.

At a time when the only Arab leader who seems to have any time for ‘Palestine’ is Jordan’s King Abdullah and most of the Sunni states are far more concerned with putting together a coalition against Iran that will of necessity include Israel, Mahmoud Abbas and ‘Palestine’ aren’t even attracting rhetoric, let alone cash. The Arab states have slashed the aid they were giving the PA by 50%, and bi-partisan legislation is already moving forward in the US to severely limit aid to the PA because of their financing of terrorism.

Will being squeezed and marginalized give the Palestinians an incentive to actually bargain in good faith for once and come up with a reasonable proposal for Israel to mull over? I’d say no, but I’d be happy to be pleasantly surprised.

As President trump once said, the biggest asset in making a deal is the willingness to walk away. Applied to the Mideast peace process, it just might work.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

President Trump Is 100% Right - The Media's Feeding Hate And Division

 Image result for trump rally in phoenix

President Trump, whatever else he accomplishes during his term deserves major credit for unmasking our dishonest, partisan media. He's totally correct when he says, as he does here in Phoenix, that the biased media is feeding hate and division here in America. And it's hard not to believe, as President Trump says that they really don't want America to be great again, and lack love of country. And that's been evident long before Donald Trump became president.

What really happened here, as most of us know is that the biased media really thought Hillary Clinton was a shoe in. Their biased polls showed it. The Left controls most of academia, Hollywood, the publishing industry, most of the legacy media, most of pop culture, and most of the tech/Social media industry and its billions.

Much of the media actually worked for either the Clintons, Obama or both before they eased into their present sinecures.

Mrs. Clinton had the big money behind her.She had an army of the best consultants money could buy to plan strategy and carpet bomb the American people with vicious attack ads. She had the corrupt DNC in her pocket to grease the primaries so she would win easily. She had the media working fo her to provide partisan hosts and slant the debates. She even had a large contingent of #neverTrump conservatives on her side.

And against her was Donald Trump, running his first campaign ever, with a small campaign team, his plane, and not much else except well, himself.

The Left, especially the media were so convinced that they could destroy him easily, so confident of their own power that they went all out...and got careless. A lot of had already known how biased they were for sometime, but the waythey conducted themselves in 2016 pulled the Wizard of Oz's curtain away for America at large.

The media bet everything on one throw of the dice, and got snake eyes. Because against all expectations Donald Trump won the election in the biggest upset in American political history.

And the Left had a collective nervous breakdown. What happened on camera was hilarious enough, but I've heard that what happened when the cameras were off was even funnier.

Mrs. Clinton was so angry and distraught she threw a major tantrum backstage and wasn't even able to speak to her followers who were waiting to hear from her. Her campaign manager, John Podesta had to speak to them and tell them to go home. And once Mrs. Clinton calmed down, they came up with the fairy tale of 'Russian collusion' to alibi why they lost so badly.

Oddly enough it was Donald Trump who caught the heat before the election for saying that he would respect the results 'if it was an honest election.'

Remember this?

Did you ever see or hear former President Obama addressing the nation to decry the Left's disrespect for the 2016 election results? Did you see any of the legacy media excoriating Mrs. Clinton,the Obama Administration and the 'resistance' for disrespecting our democracy? Of course not, because the media was intimately involved in that disrespect and they still are complicit in it. And if that's not de facto hatred of our country, what is?

The bogus 'Russia story has been off the front pages for almost two weeks now. Instead, it's 'trump the racist,' 'Trump's insane,' and 'Trumps unfit for office' repeated over and over and over again in the classic cadence of the Big Lie.

The huge crowd of over 8,000 (put a few thousand outside who couldn't get in and braved the heat to listen on monitors) in Phoenix cheering the president on and the tiny contingent of 500 or so 'protestors' that showed up after all the hype shows us two things. That Trump hasn't lost his base and that the only place the Left's brown shirts can act out is in the solid blue enclaves sympahthetic politicans Charlottesville, Chicago, Berkeley or Los Angeles. Anywhere else, the police are going to be allowed to do their jobs.

Which is of course what happened in Phoenix, which has a Democrat Mayor but one who wasn't going to let the Left run amuck in his city. Unlike Mayor Signer in Charlottesville, he ordered the police to keep the two groups separated. That angered the Left's thugs so much that as soon as Trump's crowd departed, they attacked the police...and got exactly what they deserved.

Phoenix ain't Chicago,Baltimore or Charlottesville. Not by a long shot.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

A Look At President Trump's Strategy In Afghanistan

 Image result for Trump giving speech on Afghanistan

President Trump addressed the nation last night to outline his strategy in Afghanistan. Of course he didn't go into details,being smarter than his twp predecessors. There were no deadlines or grandiose claims, merely that America would start winning this war and that our eventual withdrawal would be based on conditions on the ground rather than any arbitrary dates.

He announced five “core pillars” to the approach: getting rid of any timelines for how long U.S. troops would remain in Afghanistan; using all elements of power, including diplomatic and economic; getting tougher on Pakistan; getting India to help more with economic development; and expanding authorities for U.S. forces to fight terrorists.

He said it was up to the people of Afghanistan to “take ownership of their future” and to “achieve an everlasting peace.”

“We are not nation-building again, we are killing terrorists.”

Here's what the president had to say, in his own words. And it's obvious he's thought about this quite a bit:

Needless to say, the President received quite a bit of criticism, especially from the Left.

So let's look at what the president actually had to say.

AfPak is a war we should never have gotten involved with in the first place. I never went to West Point, but I also understand that it was crazy to send an army and billions of dollars worth of equipment to a landlocked country surrounded by hostile territory - and I include Pakistan in that. Most of the equipment needs to be unloaded at Karachi and sent overland to Afghanistan via the Torkum Pass, and aside from us needing to bribe the Pakistanis with billions every year, they've cut the road and kept us from supplying our troops on various occasions.

OTOH, both commanders in chief involved in this handcuffed our troops with ridiculous rules of engagement and various other things designed to appease 'hearts and minds' of the locals.Which of course, didn't work. The Brits kept the Afghans at bay for some time by paying the chiefs 'subsidies' to keep them from raiding India. The Afghan Wars only started when the Brits stopped paying.

The president isn't talking about arbitray deadlines and 'nation building' but victory If Trump lets our troops do what's needed and especially if he brings back great combat generals like McCrystal and starts fighting the war strategically, he has a chance. it also helps that by all accounts, the Afghani government has a lot more respect for Trump than they ever did for Barack Hussein Obama.

I have a feeling Trump and Mattis are going to fight a very different war than Bush and especially Obama, who actually appeared to be aiding and abetting the Taliban on numerous occasions... like giving up 5 top Taliban commanders and a cash ransom for Bowie Bergdahl, a deserter.

I also fully agree with his statement on getting a lot tougher with Pakistan. They have no interest in a stable Afghanistan, which was heading that way in the 1950's and 1960's.

Image result for pictures of afghanistan in the 1960s

What changed things was the Soviet invasion and Jimmy Carter's well intentioned funding of the muhadajeen, many of whom were Islamists and became the breeding ground for al-Qaeda, the Taliban and other terrorist groups. Since Afghanistan is landlocked, it was Pakistan who decided who get the money and arms, and they made sure it was the Islamists. That and Bill Clinton's failure to support the pro-Western Northern Alliance is what delivered Afghanistan to the Taliban. And as I mentioned, Pakistan has still given tacit support to the Taliban by periodically cutting off supplies to our troops and allowing the Taliban to have havens in their country except for periodic raids when the Taliban or allied groups have carried out terrorist activities in Pakistan itself.

One thing that could be especially effective is forgetting Afghanistan as a country to an extent and dealing with the local chiefs directly. They make most of their money selling opium, and they are forced to pay 'taxes' to the Taliban in order to be able to sell their crops at whatever price they can get...with most of the processing done in Pakistan's Northwest Frontier.

Imagine what would happen if the U.S made them an offer they couldn't refuse?

"We want to be your friends, and as our friends, they will be able to sell their crops directly to us for a fair market price, and without any more the Taliban. And we will help our friends defend their territory from the Taliban. of course, those who are not our friends will see their fields burned, much as we'd hate to do that."

Many of these Pashtun chiefs have territories that overlap the AfPak borders, Give them some help defending their territories and the bennie no longer having to settle for whatever price they can get and with Taliban taxation and this war could take on an entirely different complexion. Especially if we took a hard line with the Pakistanis about any obstructions and the consequences.

Yes, we could also simply leave, and part of me says 'why not?' . But there are inherent and obvious problems with that. With the right leadership, this could end up being a major graveyard for jihadis.

This was a mess Trump inherited from two dysfunctional commanders-in-chiefs. Let's withhold judgement and see how he does.

Monday, August 21, 2017

WoW! Forum: Should Monuments, Street Names Etc. Referencing The Confederacy Or Slave Owners Be Removed?

Every week on Monday, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher's Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week's Question: Should Monuments, Street Names Etc. Referencing The Confederacy Or Slave Owners Be Removed?

Doug Hagin: I do not think I can think of a more foolish venture than to cede control of what is acceptable to the Left frankly. There are those who have a genuine desire to appease the feelings of others. But, make no mistake, most folks do not care about where those monuments, etc. are located. And, many people, who had ancestors in the Confederate army will be deeply hurt by their removal. But the biggest issue here is who is driving for the erasing of history. Make no mistake, it is the Left, and their agenda is to eradicate all of American history. One way to destroy a nation is to destroy its history/heritage/culture Allowing the Left to dictate is as foolish as allowing the Left to dictate our immigration policies. Giving these miscreants their way is as bright as pouring gas on a kitchen fire. President Trump was correct, today it is Confederates, then the Founders, and so on.

The second thing here is this. As someone who has studied the War Between the States since I was nine, I have learned the war was clearly about numerous things. Dumbing it down to being "all about slavery" or painting the Southern side as evil is intellectually lazy and requires ignoring many factors and the reasons for secession. Several states, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina, and Tennessee seceded only after Lincoln call for troops. In short their reason for leaving was that they felt secession legitimate, and refused to fight against states that had chosen that path. Again, historical reality demands we do not allow narratives dictate what parts of history is preserved.

Further, to allow the demonization of Lee, Jackson, Davis, and many other Confederates is a despicable cat of moral cowardice. Those men were not perfect, but the Left readily paints them as comparable to Hitler and as fighting for slavery, and slavery alone. Some on the Right insist on adopting this historically inaccurate narrative. Some even go so far as to paint all Confederates as 19th Century leftists. That is tragic to me. A large part of what drove the nation apart was a disagreement over the proper role of the federal government. That, more than any other fissure caused various states to secede, albeit it over different issues.

What is needed is open debate on the war, its causes, that yes included but was not limited to slavery. We will never get any such dialogue if we allow the media and the Left, but I repeat myself, to use their fake moral outrage to erase history. I have had the privilege to work alongside re-enactors who bring the history of the war and the soldiers to life. I have seen them talk to students of all races about the war, and what soldiers experienced, how they dressed, etc. I have seen their faces engrossed as these walking pieces of history talked to them.

Lastly, as a man who had dozens of ancestors who wore the butternut and grey, I refuse to allow any racist, white nationalist, of any other bottom feeding scum to define the symbols my family blood was shed over. What they do is tantamount to spitting on the graves of my ancestors.

Don Surber:The attempt to liberal-wash history is an element of totalitarianism. A tool. Black history month no longer is not about giving African-Americans pride -- its stated purpose originally. This has evolved into a blanket revision of history with communism as the font of all that is good in America. Black Republicans slowly fade away in favor of black Communists such as Paul Robeson.

The abandonment of the victory of the Civil War is part of that revisionism. In dividing the races, liberals have eliminated acknowledgement of the sacrifice of white men to end slavery.

"The Battle Hymn of the Republic" got a rewrite eliminating the line "As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free!" This eliminated the role of Christianity in ending slavery, while erasing the death of 300,000 young white men -- a considerable portion of the North's manpower. This was a lot generation that led to the rise of immigration later in the 19th century.

Quite a sacrifice for a still young nation.

President Obama ignored the 150th anniversary of Gettysburg, Appomattox, and even the assassination of Lincoln because it ill-fits the liberal rewrite of history, in which whites are evil and everyone else is good.

As for statues, communities should decide what they choose to honor.

Right now, thugs are taking down statues. They serve a purpose for other powerful people. That is what pawns do.

 Rob Miller: As I've written elsewhere, it's obvious to me that Charlottesville was planned and was no accident. The coordinated attacks that broke out afterwards make that obvious, and they include the shooting of 6 police officers over the weekend by #blacklivesmatter thugs.

Meanwhile, prominent 'Confederate' Abraham Lincoln  had his statue vandalized in his home state of Illinois.  In the same city, a black pastor from a black liberation theology church is making headway in renaming George Washington Park, actually comparing the Father of our Country to nazis by saying 'Jewish people wouldn't want a park named after Auschwitz.'   Andrew Jackson, who saved the City of New Orleans and whose statue has been a landmark  for years in the French Quarter had his statue vandalized so badly by #blacklivesmatter and AntiFa  it had to be crated as the city decides what to do about it. The Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC is being pressured by The Trust for the National Mall, a major fund raiser to 'remake' the exhibit to emphasize that Jefferson was a slave owner and is threatening to withhold funds unless that happens.

What the Left is doing, of course, is working on rewriting history in their own way. After all, if you can make the Founders despicable, why not the Constitution they wrote? That's the Left's end game, along with stifling freedom of speech and 'thought crimes' by any means necessary. The Taliban, ISIS, The Soviets and the Nazis  used the same tactics.

And of course, the Left is omitting any removal of statues of name changing for their own heroes with far more questionable  deeds then men who happened to own a few slaves. Chicago boasts a statue of Lenin, a man who murdered millions. So do Seattle, Los Angeles and  New York City. There are several statues and busts of Paul Robeson, who was a Soviet agent and propagandist. Malcolm X  has numerous statues, buildings  and streets named after him, as well as numerous portraits of him hung in various locations. He even has exhibits lauding him in the Smithsonian and the National Museum of African American History.

In 1961, Malcolm X introduced  George Lincoln Rockwell, the leader of the American Nazi Party, on stage at a Nation of Islam rally, and led a standing ovation for Rockwell.

Shortly before that, Malcolm X had met with Klan leaders, including  J.B. Stoner who was later convicted of bombing of the Bethel Baptist Church in Birmingham.   Malcolm X bonded with the Klan over the same issues he had in common with the Nazis - a belief in separation of the races, opposition to the Civil Rights movement and virulent, hateful anti-semitism, something Malcolm X never made any attempt to hide or apologize for. Here's a quote from Malcolm X: "The Jew is behind the integration movement, using the Negro as a tool."

 Malcolm X’s Klan meeting cemented a sort of  alliance  between the Nation of Islam and the KKK against the  Civil Rights Movement.  As Malcolm X himself admitted, The Nation of Islam received protection for its mosques from the Klan as its part of the deal.

 "I sat at the table myself with the heads of the Ku Klux Klan," Malcolm X later admitted. "From that day onward the Klan never interfered with the Black Muslim movement in the South."

This is the man held up as an icon for young black Americans. And no one is talking about erasing him from history or even looking at him with any honesty.

So when it comes to demonizing men who were simply defending their homes against armed invasion or the false equivalency of taking men who grew up in different times with different customs and committing the false equivalency of judging them by today's customs and today's political correctness, I call that rampant hypocrisy and I call it intolerable.

America would be far better off if those 'Americans' who conceive of America as racist, criminal and illegitimate made the  decision to leave the country they hate so much. We'd be far better off without these treasonous swine, and they would be able to talk about how superior they are to us while living somewhere more in accord with what passes for their values.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz: I can not possibly add anything to what Doug said so eloquently

Mike McDaniel: All Americans, as opposed to AINOs, must oppose the left’s demands to remove any public monument or erase any public symbol. The only reason necessary is because they want it. We are in a critical phase of a culture war preceding the Civil War, and if we want to preserve America, we must oppose the left at every turn, for as never before, they have revealed precisely what they want to accomplish: the transformation of American into Cuba, Venezuela, North Korea or any other socialist/communist state. As Margaret Thatcher so presciently said, the trouble with socialism is you always run out of other people’s money. And inevitably, you imprison torture and kill millions upon millions of your own people on that great socialist path for daring to yearn for liberty.

In this particular front of the culture war, the ultimate question is who decides? Who decides what to name streets and public buildings? Who decides which monuments and statues to erect? Who decides what to tear down and rename?

The only legitimate way to make such decisions in our republic is through the legitimate political process. Political correctness and particularly, mob rule, must always be decried for what they are and ruthlessly stamped out. This is also a facet of federalism, of local control, which leftists hate with burning, red-faced, spittle-slinging rage. In such matters, the will of the electorate must lawfully prevail.

The destruction of historic symbols is, virtually without exception, a bad idea. Within a generation, even a handful of years, every lesson that could have been learned is forever lost. We consign future generations to an uncertain future, grounded in nothing more than political correctness. If we don’t know where we’ve been and what we did to get where we are, we have no idea who we are or what we aspire to be. They that have destroyed the past that none may learn from it are surely doomed to repeat its worst and most horrible mistakes, in fact, that’s what they intend.

And should the left win, what will be left? They’ve already suggested the destruction of Mt. Rushmore, anything relating to Washington, Jefferson and even Lincoln. Imagine what will remain: statues of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, various communist thugs and murderers, cop killers, traitors and corrupt leftist politicians. We would surely see monuments to Castro, Stalin, Lenin, Mao, Pol Pot and other demigods of the left in our nation’s capital. And what of our memorials to the men and women that gave their lives in war to preserve liberty, that gave that last, full measure of devotion to save the intensely ungrateful nations of Europe? Surely none of them would stand, for war is evil, except war to establish the utopia for which the left yearns.

Slavery is, of course, unconscionable, but we cannot judge the past by contemporary measures. America has always been the moral light of the world, the leader in fighting for equality and the rule of law. We overcame slavery and its legacy. The Judeo/Christian tradition triumphed. This is truly what is at stake here, and every monument defaced or destroyed by a leftist mob is one more stake driven into the heart of liberty. Whatever the left wants, oppose it.

Dave Schuler : Communities have and should have the power to erect or remove whatever monuments they care to. In some cases removing Confederate monuments is the right choice. That a century ago the residents of a state or city chose to honor generals who were traitors to the Union does not mean that the present residents should be forced to allow them to remain.

In some cases the monuments should be removed; in others they should be retained but additional context should be added to reflect today's understandings. As I noted in my post on the subject, in some cases they should remain.

Process is important. The decision should be made with due consideration and with due and democratic process. The decision should not be ceded to whoever is the most outraged.

Patrick O'Hannigan: My friend Felix and I were discussing this question over coffee, and in an effort to steer a middle course between "tear them all down" and "leave them alone," he said that he thought statues of Confederate soldiers ought to be relocated away from where many of them are now, and into museums or other such places (like old battlefields) where they would be in "historical context." That approach at least attempts something like conciliation, but I don't think it will work, because the end game for progressives isn't "Confederate statue removal," it's safe (sanitized, infantile) space everywhere.

Yale University was named for a slave trader, as Instapundit gleefully noted, but by erasing reminders of our history we'll invoke the law of unintended consequences, either by re-fighting old conflicts or by losing any frame of reference for even righteous valor (Remember Ken Burns' Civil War documentary series for PBS of more than a decade ago? If you were inspired by what soldiers like Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain did while wearing Union blue, it's because their courage was tested by men wearing Confederate gray and butternut. Take "Johnny Reb" out of the picture, and "Billy Yank" will fade away, too). Not only that, but iconoclasm tends to be poorly informed. Exhibit A in evidence for that assertion would be the people who defaced a statues of Joan of Arc (!) in New Orleans and Fray Junipero Serra (!) in California.

Laura Rambeau Lee : Whenever the old wounds and scars of our past begin to heal and race relations improve the left charges in to pick at the scabs and make sure they continue to fester. We must never forget our history as we came very close to losing our republic in the Civil War. Only by the grace of G-d were we able to abolish slavery and rebuild our divided county. But it seems every generation or so this evil begins to stir again creating unrest, division, and chaos.

Many of the Confederate monuments and memorials we see today were erected in the early 1900s and were associated with campaigns promoting the Jim Crow laws in the South. This occurred at the height of the second inception of the Ku Klux Klan which ran from 1915 to 1944 and had between three and six million members over that period of time. We can only surmise their purpose was also meant to intimidate blacks.

People in the Southern states, today unaware of the purpose or what was behind their original erection, view these memorials as honoring those who fought, served, and died in defense of their cause and should not be removed. They believe this is our history and no matter how shameful a time this was in our country we can still honor those brave souls who were their ancestors. As conservative Americans we should view them for what they are… historical symbols erected by Democrats to continue to divide the races in our country.

Once the idea of tearing down Confederate monuments arose people on the left across the country jumped on the bandwagon. They do like to follow their “masters.” Here in our county they have been attempting to remove a Confederate statue, originally introduced by a Democrat county commissioner. Just this past week the commission voted 4 to 2 to remove it but required private funds of $140,000.00 be raised within thirty days, which is about half of the cost to remove it. A Go Fund Me page was started and by this weekend it states the money has been raised. Tampa’s Democrat mayor Bob Buckhorn wrote a personal check for one thousand dollars stating he has a moral obligation to do his part. Our local sports teams have also contributed to the removal of the statue. This is not about morality, it is about appeasement.

If a majority of the people want these statues removed and schools and streets renamed it should be put to a vote. As it stands, the very vocal minority is intimidating our officials into removing these Confederate monuments, some in the dead of night.

What I do not understand is why Republicans have not set the record straight. This could be a very important and enlightening teachable moment for everyone who does not know our country’s history and the racist history of the Democrat Party. Instead our Republican representatives are allowing conservatives and Trump supporters to be labeled bigots, racists, and white supremacists.

How far will we let this go?

 Well, there it is!

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