07/30/12

President Obama has ‘abandoned’ the ship of state and is MIA

By: Jeffrey Klein
Political Buzz Examiner

Barack Obama seems to have completely abdicated the Oval Office and any pretense of his actually providing presidential leadership to govern the country in its time of need. Instead he prefers to criss-crossing the country aboard Air Force One, make stops in a growing number of ‘battleground’ states.

While in each city his itinerary is identical itinerary–giving a purely pugilistic anti-Romney, capitalist, and big business pep talk to a select group of ‘love struck’ college students during the day, followed by all manner of fundraising events in the afternoon and evening.

Republicans say that President Obama is purposely keeping a ‘packed’ fundraising schedule, having held 130 this year already, including yet another one in New York City tonight, which is now three times as many as President Bush attended at this point in his first term.

However, as ‘Taxmaggedon’ looms large at the end of the year and could cause the already weak economy to plunge into a ‘double-dip’ recession, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) and Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) have teamed up and are taking Obama to task with their own tour, according to a FOXNews article today.

Beginning today, McCain and Ayotte are going to hit towns with military operations in swing states, both North Carolina and Florida, which will suffer the greatest number of job losses by the end of the year, due to the mandatory ‘sequester’ Pentagon budget cuts and expiration of the Bush tax cuts and payroll tax holiday–called the “fiscal cliff” by Washington insiders.

In speaking about the tour McCain said averting the cuts “requires presidential leadership,” then added…

No matter who or what was responsible, the president of the United States is commander-in-chief. He should be in there. He should be talking with us. He should be leading. And he’s MIA.

Ayotte said that members of Congress must “get into action” to prevent the cuts, but also called out to President Obama…

Where’s our president? He really has been absent, and we’re calling on his leadership.

In a counter-attack, White House Press Secretary, Jay Carney, trotted out the well-worn Democrat ‘class warfare’ mantra, saying that if [Republican] lawmakers would only agree to raise taxes on top earners, then a deal could or would have been worked out–to reduce the planned cuts to the military.

The only opposition to a balanced deficit reduction plan has come from Republicans who refuse to accept the very mainstream principle that we should not ask only the middle class and seniors to bear the burden of getting our fiscal house in order.

We have a situation where defense cuts that the president believes are much too deep, that Republicans and Democrats believe are much too deep, as well as non-defense cuts Republicans would allow those to go into place, rather than ask millionaires and billionaires to pay a little bit more. That’s unacceptable as far as this president is concerned.

The position of President Obama and Democrats makes absolutely no sense, as when they all agreed and voted to maintain all of the Bush era tax cuts, with the president stating publicly that to do so would be damaging to our economy–at a time when quarterly GDP growth was hovering around 4 percent–but demands that now, 99 days before the election, they be allowed to expire for job creators, when economic growth has collapsed over the past year to just 1.5 percent this past quarter.

It is clear that Barack Obama and the Democrats will do anything to secure their reelection, including the economic destruction of the very country they all swore to protect and defend–but now, with a military that would be smaller than it was in 1915.

07/30/12

This Week’s Watcher’s Forum: Do You Favor Changes To Current Laws On Gun Ownership?

The Watcher’s Council

Every week on Monday morning, the Council and invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day. This week’s question: Do You Favor Changes To Current Laws On Gun Ownership?

The Independent Sentinel: I think it is a slippery slope. I want to keep the power in the hands of the state.

A reporting process for large sales of ammo and large capacity magazine clips should be considered by all states.

The Colorado killer could have placed bombs with timing devices throughout the theatre. He was determined and he would have used explosives.

I’m in NY and we don’t have much left of the second amendment here. Even so, the legislators want even tougher laws. Some want gun rights as restrictive on Long Island as they are in NYC. The slippery slope!

NYC, DC, Chicago, with some of the toughest gun laws in the country, have serious gun violence-their strict gun laws have done nothing except further the illegal gun trade.

Australia, which never had a second amendment, went through a massive gun confiscation. Now government officials want to eliminate all private gun ownership. They even want to ban some knives, something we’ve done in NYC.

There will be no end if we go down that slope.

The Colossus of Rhodey: I have to plead ignorance on exactly what all our current gun laws are — mainly because they’re quite labyrinthine. They’re an amalgam of state, local and federal law that can be difficult to follow at times.

For instance, take an AK-47: The Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986 banned the domestic production of fully automatic weapons for civilian use. However, such weapons produced prior to that year are permitted to be possessed and transferred by civilians “in accordance with federal, state and local law.”

That aside, my views may differ from that of many right-leaning folk: Like all rights noted in our venerable Constitution, the Second Amendment is subject to reasonable restrictions. I do not find it “reasonable” to permit everyday civilians to own automatic weapons. I believe that the right to own handguns and/or rifles of a hunting or sports nature is “reasonable,” and that any attempts to outright ban these are a violation of our Second Amendment rights. The recent McDonald and Heller Supreme Court cases establish precedent that any efforts to ban handguns, in particular, are unconstitutional.

Old School: Perhaps I can provide a bit of perspective residing in the UK as I do. Firearms are tightly controlled, and there is a category known as ‘prohibited weapons’,which includes most handguns,pepper spray,semi-automatic and pump-action centrefire rifles.

In order to own the remaining legal weapons, which basically consists of shotguns, some hunting rifles, manually loaded rifles (including most .22 rifles) a few very specific types manually loaded hand guns and historic black powder weapons, one must obtain and hold a document known as a Shotgun Certificate or a Firearm Certificate.

These must be obtained via the local police, and as I can tell you from experience, they are quite difficult to obtain.You must not only exhibit competence in gun safety, but convince the police you have satisfactory security for your gun and demonstrate to them that you have what’s known as “good reason to possess” each individual firearm applied for. You also need to provide two separate references the police find acceptable in order to obtain your certificate. And you must renew them every five years.Certificates for handguns of any type are quite difficult to obtain, and rifle and shotgun certificates are likewise difficult in the city.

In essence, it means that since 1997 and Labour’s Firearm’s Amendment Act Number Two, the British public has, to all intents and purposes, been disarmed. The net result has been that crimes involving guns have increased a great deal.

The inference of course is that someone who does not care to abide by the laws in general is certainly not going to draw the line at disobeying our gun laws should they be so inclined.

Joshuapundit: Want to make a gun control zealot scream with frustration? Here’s a riddle that will show you how:

I know of two countries that have a number of things in common. Both have compulsory military service, followed by compulsory militia duty for a number of years afterwards.

Because of that, both countries require that a fair amount of their citizenry keep fully automatic military assault rifles and a decent amount of ammo in their homes in easy reach and in ready to lock and load condition. In fact, you frequently see citizens of both countries on their way to reserve duty carrying their weapons on public transport or on the streets.

Yet both countries have two of the lowest homicide rates in the western world, and in one of them, armed citizens have been credited with saving a number of lives using their weaponry.

The two countries? Switzerland and Israel.

Oh, and both countries make a fetish of independence..one of the world’s oldest free democracies anbd one of its newest.

Obviously the solution of problems like Virginia Tech and Aurora lies in the culture rather than in letting people protect themselves. And armed citizens could have prevented loss of life in both cases.

The Razor: Beyond making it illegal for the administration to arm drug cartels in Mexico, no. The ideas floating around about reporting ammo sales are silly. With one shot one kill you can shoot a lot of people with only a single box of ammo. So what’s the purpose of such a law, other than to make people feel like they are DOING SOMETHING to prevent such incidents from occurring? They won’t.

I would sue out of existence any business that restricts law-abiding citizens from carrying guns on their premises and then fails to protect them from being shot. If you are going to disarm the law abiding while doing nothing to prevent criminals from getting guns, then you should take your business to the UK where they prefer that sort of thing or risk losing everything.

The Noisy Room: Actually, yes I do… Get rid of all gun laws – period. Unless of course you want to institute one – you know, the one the Swiss did where everyone is required to have a gun. That one, I could get behind. I’m tired of the left harping that you should only have guns for sporting purposes and then only certain guns. That when some mass murdering asshat kills lots of innocent people, it’s the gun’s fault. Surely it has nothing to do with the whack job wielding the weapon. Notice they never point out that said whack job could have been stopped if just ONE person had a concealed weapon at hand (not to mention the savings of court costs, time and the requisite cleaning of the gene pool). It’s all a Progressive means of manipulating the Constitution and abridging our Second Amendment rights. The Second Amendment is our last defense against government tyranny. Which is increasing by the minute here in the US. More guns and less regulation is the answer here – not more restrictions.

The brutal truth is that if someone wants to kill someone, they’ll find a way to do it with or without a gun. Restricting guns and ammo only hurts law abiding citizens. Criminals don’t give a crap. While you are at it, get rid of all anti-knife laws as well. Progressive Marxists have hood-winked Americans into believing that gun laws protect them. No, they don’t – they suppress Americans and their freedoms. That is why one of the first full-frontal moves of a despot is to disarm the citizenry. Check your history. Me, the more guns and ammo the better and if I want to have a damn armory in my basement, that’s my business on my property. The government can go ‘know themselves’ in the biblical sense. ‘Nough said.

The Right Planet:

“No free man shall ever be disbarred the use of arms” – Thomas Jefferson

“The great object is that every man be armed. Everyone who is able may have a gun…. Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own self defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in our possession and under our own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defence be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?” – Patrick Henry

Pretty much sums it up for me (more here).

Well, there you have it.

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere and you won’t want to miss it.

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07/30/12

Mitt Romney Remembers Tisha B’av in Jerusalem Address

By: Fern Sidman

Speaking in Jerusalem before the Jerusalem Foundation on Sunday, July 29th, presumptive Republivan nominee Mitt Romney recalled the painful history of the Jewish nation as he took note of the catastrophes that occurred on the 9th day in the Hebrew month of Av (Tisha B’Av).

“It’s remarkable to consider how much adversity, over so great a span of time, is recalled by just one day on the calendar. This is a day of remembrance and mourning, but like other such occasions, it also calls forth clarity and resolve,” he said. Remembering the words of late Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin on the meaning of Tisha B’Av, Governor Romney, said, “We remember that day,” he (Begin) said, “and now have the responsibility to make sure that never again will our independence be destroyed and never again will the Jew become homeless or defenseless.” “This,” Prime Minister Begin added, “is the crux of the problems facing us in the future.”

Arriving in Israel on Saturday evening, Romney marked the second leg of his overseas tour which has included a trip to London where he and his wife, Ann, were spectators at the opening ceremonies of the 30th Olympiad. Governor Romney will also be visiting Poland following his departure from Israel on Monday. While there, he is expected to meet with anti-Communist leader, Lech Walesa.

Romney held private meetings with both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli President Shimon Peres on Sunday morning and joined the Prime Minister at his residence for the traditional break-fast meal following the fast of Tisha B’Av. Skirting American politics and the upcoming presidential race, Prime Minister Netanyahu was careful not to endorse either candidate. “I greet Mitt Romney with great respect, just as I greeted then Senator Barack Obama when he visited Israel on the eve of the 2008 presidential race,” said Netanyahu.

On Friday, July 27th, President Obama signed the United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012, a piece of legislation ratified by Congress which provides a $70 million military aid package to Israel. The aid will go towards the expansion of Israel’s Iron Dome short-range rocket defense system. Political observers have speculated that the timing of the bill’s signage was an overt attempt by Obama to upstage Romney’s visit to Israel.

Speaking of the unique relationship that America shares with Israel, Romney said, “It is my firm conviction that the security of Israel is in the vital national security interest of the United States. And ours is an alliance based not only on shared interests but also on enduring shared values.” He added that, “We’re part of the great fellowship of democracies. We speak the same language of freedom and justice, and the right of every person to live in peace. We serve the same cause and provoke the same hatreds in the same enemies of civilization.”

Addressing the issue of a nuclear empowered Iran, Romney stated unequivocally, “My message to the people of Israel and the leaders of Iran is one and the same: I will not look away; and neither will my country. As Prime Minister Begin put it, in vivid and haunting words, “If an enemy of the Jewish people says he seeks to destroy us, believe him.” We have seen the horrors of history. We will not stand by. We will not watch them play out again.” He added that, “When Iran’s leaders deny the Holocaust or speak of wiping this nation off the map, only the naive – or worse – will dismiss it as an excess of rhetoric. Make no mistake: the ayatollahs in Tehran are testing our moral defenses. They want to know who will object, and who will look the other way. It would be foolish not to take Iran’s leaders at their word. They are, after all, the product of a radical theocracy.”

Offering a historical overview of Iran’s bellicosity towards America, Israel and the Western world, Romney said, “Over the years Iran has amassed a bloody and brutal record. It has seized embassies, targeted diplomats, and killed its own people. It supports the ruthless Assad regime in Syria. They have provided weapons that have killed American soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq. It has plotted to assassinate diplomats on American soil. It is Iran that is the leading state sponsor of terrorism and the most destabilizing nation in the world. We have a solemn duty and a moral imperative to deny Iran’s leaders the means to follow through on their malevolent intentions.”

Taking on President Obama directly regarding his position on allowing Iran to possess nuclear weapons, but limiting their use, Romney said, “We must not delude ourselves into thinking that containment is an option. We must lead the effort to prevent Iran from building and possessing nuclear weapons capability. We should employ any and all measures to dissuade the Iranian regime from its nuclear course, and it is our fervent hope that diplomatic and economic measures will do so.” Giving his tacit approval of a possible Israeli strike on Iranian nuclear facilities, Romney declared, “In the final analysis, of course, no option should be excluded. We recognize Israel’s right to defend itself, and that it is right for America to stand with you.”

As the status of Jerusalem in future peace negotiations with the Palestinian Authority remains a hot button issue for both America and Israel, Romney summed up his position on this matter to thunderous applause. “It is a deeply moving experience to be in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel.”

In the wake of the maelstrom surrounding the International Olympic Committee’s decision not to accord a moment of silence for the 11 Israeli athletes who were murdered by the terrorist group, Black September, at the 1972 Olympic games in Munich, Romney noted this and other terrorist attacks against Jews. “At this time, we also remember the 11 Israeli athletes and coaches who were massacred at the Munich Olympics forty years ago. Ten years ago this week, 9 Israeli and American students were murdered in the terrorist attack at Hebrew University. And tragedies like these are not reserved to the past. They are a constant reminder of the reality of hate, and the will with which it is executed upon the innocent.”

Referring to the recent elections held in Egypt, Romney called Muhammed Morsi an “Islamist president” and said that, “the international community must use its considerable influence to ensure that the new government honors the peace agreement with Israel that was signed by the government of Anwar Sadat.” Saying that the Middle East finds itself in “rising tumult and chaos,” Romney noted the escalating civil war in Syria and referred to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as “the dictator in Damascus” saying that he is “no friend to Israel and no friend to America. He slaughters his own people as he desperately clings to power.”

“With Hezbollah rockets aimed at Israel from the north, and Hamas rockets aimed from the south, with much of the Middle East in tumult, and with Iran bent on nuclear arms, America’s vocal and demonstrated commitment to the defense of Israel is even more critical. Whenever the security of Israel is most in doubt, America’s commitment to Israel must be most secure,” he said.