http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/288008/we-re-number-ten-deroy-murdock Good news! On economic freedom, America is in the global Top 10.Bad news: America is No. 10 — one blond hair ahead of Denmark. According to the 18th annual Index of Economic Freedom, released Thursday by the Heritage Foundation and the Wall Street Journal, Hong Kong enjoys the earth’s freest economy. The Chinese Special […]
It is almost every day now. Jihadi attacks in America. This past week there were three attempted jihad attacks. And what does the media consider the problem? Racistislamophobicantimuslimbigots, of course.
On Saturday, a Muslim named Sami Osmakac was arrested in Florida on charges of plotting to go jihad on nightclubs and the Tampa, Florida, sheriff’s headquarters. “We all have to die,” Osmakac said, “so why not die the Islamic way?”
Osmakac is from Kosovo, making his jihad another thank-you for U.S. involvement in Bosnia. And the U.S. still supports an independent Kosovo state, a militant Islamic state, in the heart of Europe. That is our policy. America refuses to own up to the terrible mistake we made in Europe — worse still, we continue to prosecute the Christian Serbs.
Media reports said that Osmakac, a devout Muslim, was “self-radicalized.” You have to wonder if Western dhimmis stay up nights thinking up new terms for jihad. Pathetic. Soon after his arrest, video emerged that showed how pious and violent Sami Osmakac really was, as he attacked and bloodied Christian street preachers. The pious Osmakac, who was completely the aggressor, then cried victim to the police, saying that he had been “insulted,” the same fictitious narrative that we are bombarded with daily by Islamic groups and Muslim Brotherhood organizations like the Hamas-tied Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
Private Equity and Creative DestructionPosted By David P. Goldman
Want to see what America would look like without private equity? Move to Detroit and contemplate the ruins of a city ruined by the placid conformity of auto industry executives. The economic impact of the corporate takeover business can’t be measured by the outcome of takeovers as such. Private equity transformed the way American business thought about the world. If managers did a lousy job, outside investors could raise money (a lot of it from trade union pension funds as well as university endowments) and kick them out.
Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry should be ashamed of themselves for bean-counting Bain Capital’s record on job creation. Any investment firm operating over decades of rapid employment growth will be able to show that the companies it bought added jobs over time. That’s what the academic studies on private equity show in any event, as Jordan Weissmann reports at The Atlantic. More relevant is the alternative. We’ve been there, done that, and don’t want to do it again. Corporate America in the 1950s and 1960s coasted on the postwar monopoly enjoyed by American companies after the destruction of European and Japanese industries. Detroit in the late 1960s had African-American neighborhoods stretching for miles with well-kept single-family homes and manicured lawns; by the end of the 1970s it had turned into a moonscape. The rust belt still hasn’t recovered from the laziness of American capital a generation ago.
Private equity takes money from institutional investors who otherwise would passively invest in public securities, and gives them the chance to exercise direct ownership of companies whose management fails to exploit their potential. It creates competition where no competition existed before. As in every business, there are ten wannabees for every visionary. A lot of the success of private equity derives from the fact that equity values rose steadily from1983 through 2000, and anyone who had a chance to own equity with borrowed money did exceptionally well. One can argue that many of the players who got rich during the boom years simply rode the big wave. (Bain Capital, though, was one of the first in, and throughout one of the smartest, and one of the least reckless about using excess leverage.)
The Human Zoo Posted By Richard Fernandez
The Agence France Presse news agency reports  that human rights activists are outraged at a video showing tribal people putting on a show for tourists in exchange for food:
Rights campaigners and politicians Wednesday condemned a video showing women from a protected and primitive tribe dancing for tourists reportedly in exchange for food on India’s Andaman Islands.
British newspaper “The Observer” released the undated video showing Jarawa tribal women — some of them naked — being lured to dance and sing after a bribe was allegedly paid to a policeman to produce them.
Under Indian laws designed to protect ancient tribal groups susceptible to outside influence and disease, photographing or coming into contact with the Jarawa and some of the Andaman aborigines is banned.
It’s a wonderful kind of altruism which protects people from the dangers of literacy, computers, antibiotics, cars, indoor plumbing, and food preservation technology. But the Indian authorities are probably not alone in their desire to keep people in a museum state for the benefit of the curators. Recently, a campaign was launched in Sydney reminding its residents that 4 out of 5 aboriginal children in certain places did not know how to read or write.
Where’s John Yoo when President Obama needs him? The famous Bush Administration legal official was much maligned for issuing opinions supporting Presidential power, and he surely would have come up with something better than the junk law issued by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel yesterday.
The 23-page memorandum (dated January 6) by Assistant Attorney General Virginia Seitz is meant to justify Mr. Obama’s recess appointments last week of Richard Cordray at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and three new members of the National Labor Relations Board—even though the Senate was not in recess but was holding pro forma sessions. The House also did not consent to the Senate’s adjournment, as required by the Constitution’s Article I, section 5, clause 4.
Ms. Seitz concedes that “The question is a novel one, and the substantial arguments on each side create some litigation risk for such appointments,” and little wonder. Most of the opinion is an off-point digression on the constitutionality of recess appointments between Senate sessions, which no one disputes. But on that “novel” question, Ms. Seitz’s legal reasoning is remarkably weak.
WHERE IS THE OUTRAGE? HEBRON IS THE ANCIENT CRADLE OF JUDAISM …IS THE NEXT PLANNED EXPULSION OF JEWS TAKING PLACE IN THE HEART OF ISRAEL?….RSK
Report: Third National BDS Conference, Hebron, December 17
| Palestinian BDS National Committee
On 17 December 2011, Palestinians gathered in the city of Hebron in the occupied West Bank for the Third National Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Conference. The event took place against the backdrop of continuous Israeli violations of Palestinian rights, and a growing resistance against injustice worldwide as demonstrated by the Arab revolutions and the occupy movements. Just minutes away from the conference venue, 500 Jewish settlers live under escort of the Israeli military in a colonial enclave in the middle of old Hebron, terrorizing local Palestinian residents on a daily basis, with the stated intent of driving them from their homes. Hebron is also an important commercial center in Palestine, and thus was a fitting venue to hold the national BDS conference, after it was held in Nablus and Ramallah in previous years.
The day started early with about 500 Palestinians from all corners of the West Bank, as well as 48 Palestinians representing a diverse sector of civil society including trade unions, student and women groups, academics, cultural workers and NGOs, all uniting under the banner of BDS.
Don’t Be Fooled by the BDS Movement’s Hidden Agenda
With this year’s National Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Conference set to take place at the University of Pennsylvania in early February, it’s important to understand what the BDS movement is all about and what its ultimate goals are.
The movement’s focus is the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But it specifically demonizes Israel while propagating the notion of Palestinian victimhood in order to gain global sympathy. Those behind the movement believe that if universities, companies and even countries pursue BDS, it will pressure the Israeli government to change what the movement sees as Israel’s hard-nosed policies toward the Palestinians and give up land they perceive as “stolen” land.
In 2010, we saw an illustration of this when the Philly BDS chapter put out a flash dance YouTube campaign against Sabra hummus being sold at a local grocer. The group contended that the corporate parent of the brand subsidizes Israeli human rights abuses by supporting the Israeli Defense Forces and its infrastructure in the West Bank. The group hoped that other university communities would follow suit. In fact, the issue triggered a big debate at Princeton University, with the student body ultimately voting to reject a proposed boycott of the hummus product on campus.
How reassuring: Jerusalem Police commissioner Nisso Shaham has sanctimoniously added his two cents’ worth to the synthetic hullabaloo that gripped specified Jerusalem and Beit Shemesh neighborhoods – the sort to which I and my sort never go. Yet my non-Jerusalemite sort is the loudest in kicking up a righteous fuss about oddities that barely impact our daily lives.
Those of us who remember this country a little further back than the day before yesterday know that given anti-Zionist ultra-Orthodox elements habitually sought to stoke the fires of contention. Their counterparts on the leftist fringes of our political patchwork were equally eager to fan the flames. For the latter, it’s politically expedient to ignite culture wars and lump the entire complex gamut of Israel’s observant Jews under the single, all-inclusive epithet of haredim (God-fearing).
The religious zealot who called a female soldier “pritzeh” (Yiddish for a woman of loose morals) was turned into a sectarian martyr when the prosecution – generally renowned for its languor and lenient plea bargains – charged him with no less than sexual harassment. The outsized photo of the secularist heroine in khaki, posing with self-important indignation, became the obligatory front-page feature for all tabloids.
Understanding The Wuterich Haditha Court Martial
The reporting of the court martial of Frank Wuterich’s actions in 2005 at Haditha fails to adequately explain the background of the specific charges and, also, the standards of evidence that must be met. Without that crucial information, the reader of daily news reports is likely justifiably confused. The news reports are being more circumspect than previously in parroting accusations of willful massacre. But, major media reports are mostly cherry-picking comments from prosecution witnesses, briefly passing over defense cross-examination, and most importantly not presenting the crucial context of the testimony and examinations.
The core issues in the court martial are whether beyond a reasonable doubt Frank Wuterich acted (1) with dereliction of duty to not obey rules of engagement, (2) leading to his own actions and command culpability for negligent homicide in the deaths at Haditha that otherwise would have been avoided. These are reductions of charges from the original charges of murder against Frank Wuterich. Several other charges were thrown out in opening motions at the court martial.