Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A Message for the G.O.P.

Early Saturday morning of Thanksgiving weekend, the phone rang. It was the Republican Party, asking for money. What they got instead was an earful.

“I want you to take this message back to the Party,” I said. “You will get no further money from me or my family until the Republicans in Congress develop a spine. I am tired of supporting so-called Republican candidates in the House and the Senate only to see them act like the minority party… in other words, incapable of governing. I am tired of helping field candidates with my hard-earned dollars who don’t support the President, run at the first sign of disapproval in the polls, are wishy washy on the War on Terror, won’t move conservative judicial nominees to an up or down vote, and spend my tax dollars like drunken sailors.”

“But it is vitally important that we hold onto the Senate majority in 2006,” said the Republican fundraiser.

“We don’t have the Senate right now,” I replied. “Look at the vote on the Warner Amendment [requiring periodic updates on the War in Iraq by the President and interpreted by Democrats and their media brethren as a vote of no confidence] by even supposedly conservative Senators such as John Cornyn of Texas and presidential hopeful George Allen, with only 13 Republicans voting nay.”

But I was just getting going. Before she could make another argument to contribute, I said, “Look at that weak-kneed excuse for a leader Bill Frist, and his even more weak-kneed predecessor Trent Lott, who wants his position back. Look at all the RINOS [Republicans in Name Only] like Lincoln Chafee, Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins and that sell-out who owes his very election to President Bush, Arlen Specter. Look at the seven dwarf Republicans who cut a deal with the Democrats to avoid changing the rules on filibustering judicial appointments. As far as I am concerned, they are all clock-punching politicians with no ideology and no principles. Look at all the Members of Congress who fail to come to the aid of Tom Delay, yet excuse the Dick Durbins of the left.”

The lady from the Republican Party tried valiantly to make another pitch, but I cut her off at the knees: “I don’t want to talk about this anymore because it just makes me mad. Just tell the Party they will get no more money for me and if it takes losing the Senate to set them straight, then so be it.”

I hope she got the message. Better yet, I hope those spineless Republicans I helped elect get the message that they are losing their base.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

A SIMPLE SOLUTION TO ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION

With the country engaged in the War on Terror, we can no longer afford porous borders. Apart from the strain on social services caused by a huge tide of illegal aliens, open borders invite terrorist infiltration.

Building a wall or fence along the Mexican border, with sensing devices and an expanded Border Patrol, are part of the solution. Tougher penalties on illegals caught trying to enter the United States or already residing here—including jail time—is another necessary step, as is punishing American businesses that flout the law and hire illegals. And settling exactly what the 14th Amendment to the Constitution means when it says, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside,” is imperative. Any law limiting citizenship of the children born to illegal aliens while in the United States will most certainly become a Supreme Court issue, so proponents of such legislation (myself included) should launch a parallel effort to amend the Constitution and plug this loophole. Time is of the essence.
The Canadian border, while apparently not a major conduit for illegal immigration, is still extremely porous to terrorists and must also be sealed.

Can it be done? As an Army officer in West Germany during the Cold War, whose unit patrolled the East German and Czech borders, I can answer with an unequivocal yes. The East Germans, in particular, had an extremely effective barrier system. Theirs included minefields and shotgun charges—which I certainly do not advocate employing—but their system of remote sensing devices, military patrols and a high chain-link fence, eventually replaced by a concrete wall topped by cylinders that rolled to prevent one from gaining purchase, worked.

Which brings me to my recommendation for an important, yet extremely simple, adjunct to any overall border security plan: stationing military units along both U.S. borders.
As long as we are closing or consolidating old and redundant military bases in the United States, why not exchange many of these properties for outposts all along the Mexican and Canadian borders, with major installations being relocated closer to those borders? That way, our military could perfect their skills in border interdiction (skills greatly in demand along Iraq’s borders with Syria and Iran today), while enforcing our laws against illegal immigration. By far the best training vehicle for any military or police force comes from performing a real job in the field against a real opponent, so our troops would gain extremely valuable experience. The military already has the best equipment available for incursion detection. Moreover, such a plan would reduce the level of expansion required in the Border Patrol, thereby resulting in cost savings, while increasing the deterrent factor to crossing into the United States illegally.
With the War on Terror, America’s porous borders have become a monumental national security concern, as opposed to just an easy conduit for illegal immigration. What better way to deal with the situation than with our Armed Forces?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Check out Matt May's Blog

Matt May was kind enough to respond to a note I sent him about a particularly thoughtful piece he published in American Thinker. He encouraged me to start my own blog and then kindly gave it a plug. So I decided to reciprocate, not that it will help Matt any, because he is already getting picked up by some very prestigious blogs and publications.

Nobody knows about my site yet, but I am hoping a nod from Matt will help. If you do come across my blog, please be sure to check out Matt's at www.mattymay.blogspot.com. He's a great writer and more temperate than I am, which I admire greatly. And his heart and mind are definitely in the right place.

Thanks, Matt

Monday, November 21, 2005

The Christmas Revolution

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,
or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

Those are the first words of the First Amendment to the United States
Constitution, which also covers freedom of speech, freedom of the
press, the right to assemble and the right to petition the government.
This discussion will be limited to the establishment of religion
clause, as most people refer to it.

I'm neither a lawyer nor a constitutional scholar, but I do know what
the meaning of "is" is, and it seems to me that the ACLU, atheists,
liberal Democrats and activist judges for far too long have been given
free rein to interpret the clause not broadly, as conventional wisdom
assumes, but in an extremely limited manner: They focus solely on the
"establishment of religion" part, while completely ignoring the second
part, "or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

If anything, the second part carries more weight, because it relates
directly to the rest of the First Amendment, which deals with freedom
of expression.

The leftists have been on a roll in recent years to such an extent
that all of a sudden we find ourselves unable to participate in the
Christmas traditions Americans of all ages have enjoyed for more than
200 years.

"Merry Christmas" has become prohibited speech in America to such an
extent that it has become increasingly difficult to find even a
Christmas card that carries the greeting. If you think I am
exaggerating, go to any drugstore, supermarket or card specialty shop
and browse the selection. The word "Christmas" has been replaced by
the more inclusive—and bland—"Holidays." People from all walks of
life, from department store clerks to business executives (and most
certainly politicians) avoid the phrase "Merry Christmas" at all
costs. "Happy Holidays" is now the politically correct greeting.
Nativity scenes, Christmas pageants and carols that reference a higher
being are now banned from any location or venue even remotely
connected with local, state or federal government, including public
schools, city parades and anything else the ACLU can think of in their
relentless assault on the free exercise of religion. Soon, mark my
words, Christmas as a national holiday will cease to exist; it will
likely be replaced with some Druid-sounding, politically correct name,
such as "Winter Festival."

Ironically, in many places where Christmas and Christian religious
icons are banned, expressions of other religions—Menorahs and the
Koran, for example—are somehow acceptable in the name of tolerance and
diversity. Beyond the Christmas purge, all references to God or
Christianity are under attack from the left. Soon, we'll be chiseling
off adornments to thousands of government buildings, including the
U.S. Supreme Court, that feature Moses or the Ten Commandments or
(gasp!) the word "God". Our national motto, "In God We Trust," will
be stricken from all currency, "under God" excised from the Pledge of
Allegiance (they're not done with that one, yet), swearing on the
Bible in court or at inaugurations will be banned, and the expression
"God bless you," uttered to a sneezer will be strictly verboten.

Exaggeration? I don't think so. Who could have imagined the state we
are in today, when Christian churches are prohibited from
participating in "holiday parades" in which gay American Indians strut
their stuff?

Haven't the ACLU and activist judges crossed the line to such an
extent that they now prohibit the free exercise of religion—not to
mention free speech itself? Are we not experiencing tyranny of the
minority in America? And what is to be done about it?

Americans of all political persuasions must first ask themselves if
they wish to live in a country that prohibits Christmas, limits
freedom of speech and expressions of religion and allows a busybody
minority to impose its will—and whim—on the vast majority of our
citizens. In other words, do we believe in liberty or tyranny?

The answer to that is self-evident.

Then, we need to break the logjam in Congress that has prevented
strict constructionist judges from being appointed to the federal
courts. Democrats cannot be permitted to thwart the Constitution
procedurally by blocking judicial nominees from even coming up for a
vote. Up to now, they have justified their obstructionist tactics in
the name of preserving a woman's right to an abortion, but as we have
seen, the implications go far beyond that narrow issue to encompass
freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

Republicans are just as culpable as the Democrats, because, despite
holding a plurality in both houses of Congress, they have been
unwilling to confront the obstructionists head-on, through rules
changes, Constitutional challenges or even staying up around the clock
to outlast threatened filibusters. Both parties should be ashamed and
both should be held to account for their actions or lack thereof.

President Bush has made a good start in naming strict constructionists to the Supreme Court. If the Democrats want to oppose them on ideological grounds, Republicans should invoke the so-called nuclear option.

Next, we should consider a new amendment to the Constitution
clarifying the First Amendment so that religious expression—even in
government venues—cannot be abridged.

Finally, we all need to adopt the tactics of the opposition and begin
engaging in acts of civil disobedience. If the Mayor of San Francisco
can thwart the law and perform gay marriage ceremonies, then why can't
our local judges and elected officials follow the courageous example
of former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, who sacrificed all as a
result of placing a Ten Commandments monument in the State Supreme
Court building?

Elected officials of all parties across the United States need to dust
off those nativity scenes and brazenly plant them in front of City
Hall. Church congregations, carrying Bibles, crosses and other
overtly religious symbols should march uninvited in city "Winter
Festival" parades, then stage sit-ins when police attempt to deny
their right to express their religious convictions.

Voters everywhere should demand that candidates for office state their
position on Christmas and freedom of religious expression. If they do
not pass the liberty litmus test, they should be soundly defeated.

And each of us, when confronted with the politically correct
salutation, "Happy Holidays," should hold up our heads, look the
greeter in the eye and loudly proclaim, "Merry Christmas!"

Put "Christmas" Back in Merry Christmas

This year, I took a stand.

Instead of wimping out on my department’s corporate Christmas card with “Happy Holidays,” “Season’s Greetings,” or some other phrase designed to avoid using the word Christmas, the card now reads: “Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.”

I didn’t want to exclude non-Christians, or even pagan Democrats, so “Happy Holidays” is there as a nod to their beliefs. I presume that Jewish Americans will be equally inclusive, wishing people “Happy Hanukah and Season’s Greetings.” (Or is it “Chanukah”?) And Kwanza celebrants will surely want to embrace members of other ethnic groups with a general recognition of their traditions.

I suppose that atheists who still want to get in on the spirit of the times can send cards, if they send cards, with a Druidized “Welcome Winter Solstice” message. They aren’t very inclusive, so they probably won’t go beyond that.

But I’m saying “Merry Christmas.” I hope you will, too.

Who is to Blame for 9/11?

Who is the one person, above all others, we should blame for 9/11 and all the terror attacks that preceded it and will follow as we fight the War on Terror?

Osama bin Laden? Nope. He’s just the latest in a long line of terrorists.

George W. Bush? Well, there are a lot of Democrats out there who would like to pin that on the president, along with World War II, the Great Depression and probably even the Civil War, if they thought they could get away with it, but Bush is the one who is fighting—and winning—the War on Terror.

No, that honor goes to none other than the worst president in the history of the United States, James Earl Carter.

Liberals and America bashers will be going apoplectic about this moment, but when you think about it, Jimmy Carter is to blame for all the murder and mayhem, death and destruction we have endured for the last 25 years or so at the hands of Islamofascist terrorists. And it all began on November 4, 1979.

That was the day, you’ll recall, that a foreign government invaded the United States—our embassy in Teheran—and took 66 American diplomats, military personnel and government workers prisoner, holding them for 444 long days. It was an act of war, as blatant as any in the history of conflict, and our weak and irresolute President Jimmy Carter did… absolutely nothing.

What he should have done, and what George W. Bush no doubt would have done had he been president at the time, was to tell the Iranians that this action would not stand. What he should have done is mustered our military forces and sent them post haste to the Middle East. He should have told the Iranians that we would be landing U.S. military transport aircraft, supported by fighters, with bombers waiting in the wings, and that any shots fired at our aircraft or hair harmed on a hostage’s head would result in an immediate declaration of war, employing anything and everything in our arsenal to destroy Iran.

By dithering, locking himself in the White House and refusing to act, Jimmy Carter revealed himself to be a coward and his nation a paper tiger that could be humiliated before the entire world by a ragtag band of student radicals. His failure to uphold his oath to protect and defend the United States and its people led to all that has come since, culminating in 9/11 and the necessity of waging a War on Terror with only a handful of allies standing beside us.

Some will say I am being too harsh on a good man. Perhaps, but this “good man” has the blood of several thousand innocent, good men and women on his hands—the victims of 9/11 and all the other terrorist acts that emanated from his incredible failure of nerve, and the men and women of our military who have so honorably sacrificed their lives in correcting Carter’s folly.

But cowardice is not Jimmy Carter’s only legacy. He compounded his colossal mistake by ripping asunder America’s human intelligence capabilities, cutting intelligence budgets and gutting our military. And he added insult to injury by joining the chorus of Bush haters and second-guessers as we took the fight to the enemy, even to the point of sitting next to that notorious anti-American blowhard and liar Michael Moore at the Democrats’ Convention and criticizing President Bush abroad.

Carter's conduct, both as President and since, has been nothing short of disgraceful.

A century from now, when the history of this turbulent era is written, George W. Bush is likely to be rated among the very best American presidents. I wouldn't be surprised to see his face on Mt. Rushmore. And Jimmy Carter? Well, presidents are judged by how well or how poorly they respond to the great challenges of their day, and whether they leave a lasting legacy to the nation they led. By those criteria, I would rank him dead last, the worst president in the history of the Republic.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Democrats: All Hat and No Cattle

There's a saying here in Texas to describe a person who lacks the courage of his convictions: All hat and no cattle. That pretty much sums up the Democrats.

Yesterday, after months of Democrat bluster and revisionism over the War in Iraq, Congressional Republicans finally showed some spine and told the Democrats to put their money where their mouth is. In response to an absurd resolution proposed by ex-Marine John Murtha, Democrat of Pennsylvania, urging the immediate withdrawal of American forces from Iraq, Republicans said, "Okay, let's put it to a vote."

The resolution was resoundingly defeated by a vote of 403 to 3, with Murtha himself voting against his own proposal. Nancy Pelosi and a host of other loudmouth Democrats, who have been criticizing the war ad nauseum but offering nothing in the way of alternative policy, also voted down the resolution.

They tried to spin it, as did their allies in the press. Murtha tried to say his words were twisted, that his resolution called for redeployment "as soon as practicable." But in his grandstanding remarks introducing his cut-and-run bill, he clearly said "immediate withdrawal" and the resolution itself immediately terminated America's mission in Iraq. Democrats and the so-called mainstream media predictably called the vote a Republican stunt, and many liberal newspapers carried the story as a below-the-fold afterthought.

But the real political stunt has been the persistent drumbeat of negativism Democrats have been pounding in a dishonest effort to smear the President and undermine our troops in Iraq. Yesterday, they revealed their true colors: Yellow, yellow and yellow. They didn't even have the courage to back their own proposal.

And if they don't have the courage to stand up for what they believe in, how can we trust them to have the courage to protect and defend America in what is sure to be a prolonged war against evil Islamic terrorists?

Friday, November 18, 2005

Cut and Run Democrats

Now, at last, the truth is coming out about the Democrats: They cannot be trusted to defend America against the terrorists.

They tried to trot out a "war hero" in John Kerry in the last presidential election, but he had feet of clay. Veterans such as myself remember how he lied about the U.S. military in Vietnam and how he dishonored American heroes. The Swift Boat Veterans called his bluff and Kerry went down.

The Democrats have been dishonest about their "policy" toward the battle for Iraq and the overall War on Terror all along. They knew they couldn't reveal their true intentions--to cut and run, leaving the initiative to the terrorists--so they instead decided to use the Big Lie to undercut President Bush and plant seeds of doubt in the minds of the American people.

Thanks to the President's late response to this assault on the truth, and thanks to weak-kneed Republicans in Congress, up to now, it has been a one-sided debate, with liars (the Democrats) carrying the day.

What happens if we do cut and run? The terrorists will be emboldened. Because they are ruthless, they will crush any hope of democracy in Iraq and the forces of evil will take over, just as they did in Afghanistan. Once again, terrorists will have a secure base from which to plot acts of mass murder against Americans. We will have turned the clock back to tit-for-tat: The terrorists kill Americans, and we send a cruise missile up a camel's butt. They kill more Americans and we launch another tepid response. We will have ceded the battlefield to the terrorists and that battlefield will be on our shores.

The Democrats have no plan other than to trash the President. They would gladly put all of us at risk if it gains them a temporary political advantage.

I don't care of Pennsylvania Rep. Murtha is a decorated Vietnam veteran or not. What matters is whether he will protect the American people today. The answer is no.

This war is every bit as important as was World War II. The outcome will decide our fate as a civilization. I would rather fight the terrorists now, before they gain access to nuclear weapons, than after they have vaporized an American city. And rest assured, if we cut and run, the unthinkable will come to pass.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Fight Fire with Fire

Republicans,

The Democrats' largely unchallenged efforts to criminalize political debate and impugn the integrity of conservatives with false charges of ethics violations are working. And the tactic puts all of you at risk. Sen. Bill Frist, Sen. Richard Shelby, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, Rep. Tom Delay, Scooter Libby, Karl Rove, President Bush, Vice President Cheney, and ousted former PBS Board Chairman Kenneth Tomlinson are but a few of the people who have been subjected to Democrat smear campaigns. More are sure to follow unless and until Republicans wake up and turn the tables.

We are at a disadvantage in that lying is not something that comes to us easily, but in this case, lying isn't necessary. Democrats have given us ample ammunition to fight fire with fire, if only we have the courage to use it.

Sandy Berger stole classified papers, destroyed them and lied about it, yet escaped with a slap on the wrist. He ought to be sitting in jail.

Sen. Jay Rockefeller has admitted on national television to revealing plans for the attack on Iraq to Saddam Hussein ally, Syria, one of the world's leading state sponsors of terror. According to Sen. Rockefeller, this was shortly after 9/11. He should be investigated, by a special prosecutor, to determine whether his actions led to the evacuation of weapons of mass destruction from Iraq to Syria, whether they cost the lives of American military forces, and whether they constituted treason.

Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame should be investigated, again by a special prosecutor, to determine if his so-called mission to Niger was an attempt by rogue elements within the CIA to unlawfully undermine the policies of the President of the United States. Why wasn't Wilson required to sign a confidentiality statement? Why wasn't he required to provide a written after-action report? Why was he given permission by the CIA to publish details of his "mission" in the national press? Why did Wilson lie about the Vice President's knowledge of his so-called findings? Who else within the CIA was involved?

A special prosecutor needs to be appointed to get to the bottom of the very serious national security implications of The Washington Post story on the existence and general location of secret CIA prisons for terrorists. Who were the Post's sources? Was a crime committed?

Rogue Austin, Texas, prosecutor Ronnie Earle, should be investigated for misuse of his public office to intimidate and punish his perceived political enemies. Did he commit any crimes in leveling false allegations against duly elected officials, in charging Tom Delay with a "crime" that wasn't even on the books and in grand jury shopping?

The only way to stop the Democrats abuse of the American judicial system and ethics rules is to show them that this is a zero-sum game by turning the tables. Would beating them at their own game be destructive and distasteful? You bet. But it would put a stop to this nonsense.