Thursday, March 27, 2008


We recently posted about the courage of Geert Wilders, the Dutch member of parliament, who has put together a 15 minute video titled Fitna that exposes the horrors of Islamic extremism. Wilders film has somehow managed to get onto the internet even though a lot of services declined to host it. I couldn't embed it, but it can be viewed here. Much of the footage will be familiar to those who've been getting their information from the blogosphere for the last couple of years, but for those still relying on the old media much of it will be new.

Be advised that some of what you'll see is very rough, but it's important that every citizen of this country be aware of the nature of the struggle we're engaged in and that every citizen, therefore, watch it. It may well cost Wilders his life to have brought it to you.

UPDATE: The outfit hosting the movie Fitna received serious threats and decided to remove the video. It can, however, be seen here.


The Wright Stuff

I know this may upset some faithful readers, but I have to confess that I weary of talk radio hosts like Sean Hannity battering his listeners with the details of the Jeremiah Wright imbroglio for three hours every day for weeks. Wright's ravings are certainly significant and they do tell us something important about Obama, but Hannity seems obsessed with making sure we get the message and refuses to let go of our lapels until we nod obligingly that we have indeed absorbed the lesson.

It's almost enough to make me hope that I never hear another word on the subject, but then along comes a trio of essays by three of the best writers in contemporary journalism, and I'm hooked. I have to read them each to the end. So should you.

The first is by Mark Steyn at NRO. Steyn is a deft and funny writer whose wordcraft is a delectation. Steyn commences his skewering of Obama's defense of Wright with this:

"I'm sure," said Barack Obama in that sonorous baritone that makes his drive-thru order for a Big Mac, fries, and strawberry shake sound profound, "many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed."

Well, yes. But not many of us have heard remarks from our pastors, priests, or rabbis that are stark, staring, out-of-his-tree, flown-the-coop nuts. Unlike Bill Clinton, whose legions of "spiritual advisers" at the height of his Monica troubles outnumbered the U.S. diplomatic corps, Senator Obama has had just one spiritual adviser his entire adult life: the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, two-decade pastor to the president presumptive. The Reverend Wright believes that AIDs was created by the government of the United States - and not as a cure for the common cold that went tragically awry and had to be covered up by Karl Rove, but for the explicit purpose of killing millions of its own citizens. The government has never come clean about this, but the Reverend Wright knows the truth. "The government lied," he told his flock, "about inventing the HIV virus as a means of genocide against people of color. The government lied."

Does he really believe this? If so, he's crazy, and no sane person would sit through his gibberish, certainly not for 20 years.

Or is he just saying it? In which case, he's profoundly wicked. If you understand that AIDs is spread by sexual promiscuity and drug use, you'll know that it's within your power to protect yourself from the disease. If you're told that it's just whitey's latest cunning plot to stick it to you, well, hey, it's out of your hands, nothing to do with you or your behavior.

Read the whole thing. It's worth a week of Sean Hannity.

Christopher Hitchens doesn't hold back about much and his feelings toward Barack Obama are no exception. He concludes his essay at Slate with this:

To have accepted Obama's smooth apologetics is to have lowered one's own pre-existing standards for what might constitute a post-racial or a post-racist future. It is to have put that quite sober and realistic hope, meanwhile, into untrustworthy and unscrupulous hands. And it is to have done this, furthermore, in the service of blind faith. Mark my words: This disappointment is only the first of many that are still to come.

Read the rest of it, if for no other reason than to enjoy the honey-like flow of Hitchens' prose.

Perhaps the most important of the three is penned by Pat Buchanan, another man not celebrated for pulling punches and prettifying the unpretty. Thus when he turbned his journalistic gaze toward Barack Obama's defense of Jeremiah Wright it was a foregone conclusion that there would be a lot of politically inconvenient truths contained in the result:

Barack says we need to have a conversation about race in America.

Fair enough. But this time, it has to be a two-way conversation. White America needs to be heard from, not just lectured to.

This time, the Silent Majority needs to have its convictions, grievances and demands heard. And among them are these:

First, America has been the best country on earth for black folks. It was here that 600,000 black people, brought from Africa in slave ships, grew into a community of 40 million, were introduced to Christian salvation, and reached the greatest levels of freedom and prosperity blacks have ever known.

Wright ought to go down on his knees and thank God he is an American.

Second, no people anywhere has done more to lift up blacks than white Americans. Untold trillions have been spent since the '60s on welfare, food stamps, rent supplements, Section 8 housing, Pell grants, student loans, legal services, Medicaid, Earned Income Tax Credits and poverty programs designed to bring the African-American community into the mainstream.

Governments, businesses and colleges have engaged in discrimination against white folks - with affirmative action, contract set-asides and quotas - to advance black applicants over white applicants.

Churches, foundations, civic groups, schools and individuals all over America have donated time and money to support soup kitchens, adult education, day care, retirement and nursing homes for blacks.

We hear the grievances. Where is the gratitude?

Barack talks about new "ladders of opportunity" for blacks.

Let him go to Altoona and Johnstown, and ask the white kids in Catholic schools how many were visited lately by Ivy League recruiters handing out scholarships for "deserving" white kids.

Is white America really responsible for the fact that the crime and incarceration rates for African-Americans are seven times those of white America? Is it really white America's fault that illegitimacy in the African-American community has hit 70 percent and the black dropout rate from high schools in some cities has reached 50 percent?

Is that the fault of white America or, first and foremost, a failure of the black community itself?

As for racism, its ugliest manifestation is in interracial crime, and especially interracial crimes of violence. Is Barack Obama aware that while white criminals choose black victims 3 percent of the time, black criminals choose white victims 45 percent of the time?

Is Barack aware that black-on-white rapes are 100 times more common than the reverse, that black-on-white robberies were 139 times as common in the first three years of this decade as the reverse?

All three of these columns are not only good reading, they're important reading. Turn off talk radio and take twenty minutes to digest them.


Dire Outlook for the NORKs

Strategy Page gives us an update on the situation in communist North Korea. It's pretty grim, especially now that a number of countries have decided to stop the flow of food aid which only went to feed the military and the government anyway:

March 20, 2008: In the north, destitution is the rule. South Korean economists have downgraded their estimates of per capita income in North Korea. It's now believed to be under $1,000 a year (it's over $25,000 in the south). Power and food shortages have left many farms unable to work on the Spring planting.

As seen from space, North Korea is dark at night, while South Korea is lit up. The newly elected, conservative, president of South Korea has told the north that food aid would no longer be automatically sent. The north would have to be more cooperative in areas of economic development and nuclear disarmament. The new South Korean government further irritated the North Korean officials by increasing radio broadcasts to the north that told people up there about why more free food and fuel was not going to arrive until the North Korean government kept its earlier promises to South Korea.

To back up this, South Korea released photos it had taken (with special long range cameras) near the DMZ, clearly showing Red Cross food aid being transferred to the military in 2006 and 2007. The previous South Korean government, following a decade long "sunshine policy" had discussed these photos privately with North Korean officials. There was never any response. So the new South Korean government released the photos.

The north has been caught diverting food aid to the military dozens of times since 2003, and has ignored foreign criticism of this. As a result, many nations will not contribute food aid to North Korea any more. The food shortage is so severe this Winter that lower ranking government officials had their food rations cut. This had never happened before.

The North Korean armed forces have lost the power struggle with the "economic reformers" in the government. Many senior generals have been forced to retire in the past few months. The military has been stripped of many of its economic assets, mainly because of mismanagement and corruption. The police have been given the power to arrest military personnel for "economic crimes" and corruption. Meanwhile, the growing use of narcotics in the north (by those getting rich in the black market and along the Chinese border) has resulted in harsher penalties. From now on, anyone caught with more than a quarter pound of narcotics will be executed.

The North Korea military has been declining for over a decade, and the government has apparently concluded that there's no point in putting a lot of money into the military when the economic situation is so dire.

On the Chinese border, North Koreans are so desperate to get out that they are selling themselves into slavery (or, rather, indentured servitude, where they work for free for a period of time to work off the money used to get them past the border guards). North Korean refugees are increasingly suffering from stress related disorders. This is the result of increasing police activity back home.

North Korea has entered into a trade deal with Uganda. North Korea will supply weapons and training for Ugandan police, while the African nation will export food and silk. More importantly, North Korea announced new economic reforms. The government is giving in to Chinese demands that economic reforms, like those that made China rich in the last three decades, be implemented in North Korea. Meanwhile, North Korea continues to delay providing proof that it has halted its nuclear weapons program. The new reforms will take at least a year to show some results, and in the meantime, the food, corruption and public order situations will get worse.

What a bleak picture. It almost makes you think Strategy Page is describing the misery of African Americans in Jeremiah Wright's America.

If Marx were alive today to survey the fruits of his life's work he'd probably burn all his books. Marxism has been applied in the Soviet Union, Cuba, Africa, North Korea, Eastern Europe, and China. In every case either Marxism had to be abandoned or the country languishes in poverty and squalor. The only people left today who still have hope that Marxism is an answer to the world's problems are people, like American college professors, who've never lived under it.