Friday, October 28, 2005

Refreshing Op-Eds at LA Times

Maybe it is just a co-incedence that since Micheal Kinsley's departure at the LA Times, someone has allowed "right thinking" Op-Eds to be posted. If only the Gray Lady in the east could take note.

October 21, 2005 : Opinion : Commentary DAVID GELERNTER
A history lessonIt may be news to certain senators, but the U.S. always discovers larger, nobler causes in the midst of battle.


THIS WEEK should have been a time of rejoicing in America. On Wednesday, Saddam Hussein went on trial — the ex-master butcher of Iraq, reeking of blood. And last Saturday, the newly freed Iraqi people pulled off a referendum right under the noses of terrorists whose hearts' desire is to blow democracy to bits. The United States — the armed forces especially, and the Bush administration's leadership — is largely responsible for both these amazing developments. Obviously Iraq is still in deadly danger. But if these two events don't call for congratulations, what kind of world events would?

Yet up on Capitol Hill, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had been called before a Senate committee. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) was one of those who questioned her. Boxer was obnoxious and frightening.

She made reference to the Holocaust, offensively. More important, she demonstrated that she doesn't know U.S. history, and she implied that the American people don't either. And she raised an alarming question about contemporary politics. We often hear from Democrats that President Bush's policy in Iraq makes no sense. But how can it make sense to the Barbara Boxers of Congress if they can't understand the explanation?

Rice was defending the administration's conduct of the war when Boxer objected. The administration, Boxer noted (correctly), has changed focus on Iraq. We went to war mainly on account of weapons of mass destruction and international terrorism, she said. But WMD turned out to be a hoax on the whole world, and nowadays we are told that our Iraq mission is gigantic. We plan for a freed Iraq to inspire and stabilize the entire Middle East and to promote democracy everywhere. What kind of bait-and-switch is the administration playing with the American people?

Rice answered that this is the way the world works. For example, we did not go into World War II to build a democratic Germany…. Here Boxer interrupted. World War II, she told Rice curtly, has nothing to do with Iraq. Boxer had lost relatives in the Holocaust. No one had to tell her about World War II.
But Rice's analogy was exactly right. And by the way, using the Holocaust as a bat to beat political enemies over the head is demeaning to Jews and to human dignity. Having lost relatives in the Holocaust does not, in any case, confer expertise in U.S. history.
Democracies rarely declare war to improve the world, as Rice could have explained had she had the chance. They fight to protect themselves, sometimes to fulfill treaty obligations. But once a war is underway, free peoples tend to think things over deeply. Casualties concentrate the mind. We refuse to let our soldiers die for too little. America at war has lifted its sights again and again from danger, self-interest and self-defense to a larger, nobler goal. Same story, war after war. Iraq fits perfectly.

At first, Colonial America made war on Britain to loosen the British grip on commerce and society, not to create an independent state. Only as the war dragged on and costs and casualties mounted did public opinion swing round toward independence. In 1861, the North reluctantly made war on the Confederacy to hold the Union together. President Lincoln was painfully aware that, at the start of the fighting, freedom for the slaves would not have commanded popular support as a cause for war. Only later, as casualties mounted and blood ran in rivers, did freeing the slaves become the Union's ultimate goal.

We marched into World War I behind an idealistic war message from President Wilson to Congress. But the U.S. was in a fighting mood because of Germany's threat to sink unarmed American merchant ships and a German secret message (intercepted by Britain) offering Texas, New Mexico and Arizona to Mexico if it joined Germany against the U.S. Only later did self-determination in Europe and the creation of a League of Nations become American war goals.
Which brings us to World War II. And, of course, Rice is dead right: Once the war was over, we spent years cultivating democracy in Japan and Germany. But we entered the war because Japan attacked us and, four days later, Adolf Hitler declared war on us.
What do we conclude when the secretary of State makes a plain statement of historical fact and a senator won't listen? That it is only natural for demagogues to attack thoughtful, polite officials who are trying hard to tell straight truths about a complicated war. The Boxers of this world ought to be met with single-minded slogans, but no doubt Rice can't see why she should stoop that low.

Americans who don't know history are the demagogue's natural prey. Boxer's statements assume that Americans at large know as little about history as she does. Let's hope it's not true.,0,7993456.story?coll=la-news-comment-opinions

October 28, 2005 : Opinion : Commentary
Americans won't let Democrats lose Iraq

A FEW DAYS AGO, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) made a speech
urging the U.S., in effect, to get out of Iraq the way we got out of

Leahy told the Senate that we cannot win in Iraq. "It has become
increasingly apparent that the most powerful army in the world
cannot stop a determined insurgency." (U.S. troops, Iraqi troops,
long-suffering Iraqi civilians to Leahy: Thanks, senator, we
needed that.) And Leahy announced that the president must lay
out a public formula to tell the world just when U.S. troops will
leave Iraq. Otherwise, Leahy said, he will urge the Senate to
choke off the war by refusing to fund it. That's how the U.S. finally
lost Vietnam: Congress snuffed out the money.

Be warned, senator: If Democrats become the "let's treat Iraq as
we treated Vietnam" party, the public will turn away in revulsion,
and the Democratic Party will die. It's not in such great shape

Leahy's words lighted up a deep, dark secret that this nation
would rather forget. Defeat in Vietnam was a catastrophe for the
U.S., a body-slam to the nation's self-confidence. It was far worse
for Southeast Asians, who were exiled, imprisoned, tortured and
murdered by their vicious communist conquerors. But for
left-wing Democrats it was a triumph. Forcing the mighty U.S.
military to run away was the greatest victory they have ever
known. That triumph broke a levee that sent a flood of left-wing
ideas pounding across the U.S. landscape.

The 1974 congressional elections were a blow-out victory for
Democrats. Watergate was a big factor, but public exhaustion
with Vietnam (encouraged by the media) helped too. In 1973, the
last U.S. combat troops left Vietnam, but Washington had
promised to support South Vietnam with money and weapons.
Congress refused to pay. In March 1975, President Ford made a
desperate last appeal for funds to keep America's promise.
Congress refused.

In April 1975, all remaining American diplomats and advisors
were pulled out in a frantic, starvation-budget withdrawal. South
Vietnam collapsed. "The decrease in American aid had made it
impossible for Saigon troops to carry out their combat and
force-development plans," North Vietnam's army chief of staff
coolly explained.

When Democrat Jimmy Carter was elected in 1976, he had large
congressional majorities to work with. Carter described the
Vietnam War as "moral poverty" in action. One of his first acts
was to pardon all draft evaders — at a time when families were
still mourning soldiers dead in battle.

Carter preached anti-anti-communism: As the U.S. military
deteriorated for lack of funds and confidence, and Cuban troops
with Soviet advisors moved into Angola and Ethiopia, Carter's
secretary of State announced that "to oppose Soviet or Cuban
involvement in Africa would be futile." This was foreign policy as
the left liked it.

At home, too, liberals were happy; conservatives weren't. In the
culture wars, feminism and environmentalism, affirmative action
and the sexual revolution swept the country. Words like honor,
bravery and patriotism were out. "Do your own thing" and
"self-esteem" were in.

MANY OBSERVERS have noticed that Democrats of the left speak
of Iraq as another Vietnam. Few have explained why: Because
Democrats of the left want Iraq to be another Vietnam. Not that
they took pleasure in Vietnamese suffering, but they rejoiced in
the left-wing power surge that transformed the United States in
the aftermath. Naturally, they hope to repeat that experience: to
humiliate Republicans, moderate Democrats and the military by
pinning the label "bloody failure" on another foreign war.
It's not going to happen.

Iraq is nothing like Vietnam, and the public knows it. In the recent
referendum, 63% of Iraqi voters cast ballots. Each vote screamed
defiance at terrorism and defeatism. Each vote told the world that
terrorism will lose and democracy will win, that Iraqis trust the
United States to help protect them against vengeful insurgents
bent on murdering whoever dares to hope and care and vote.
An impressive 78% voted "yes" on the new constitution. Sunni
Muslims said no, but many said it at the ballot box. The
referendum made clear that ordinary people everywhere do want
to govern themselves. Democracy could have worked in Vietnam

This nation will abandon the Democratic Party before it
abandons Iraq.

Polls show American uneasiness about the war. Naturally. The
fighting is dirty and dangerous. But the U.S. is a God-fearing
nation; we are proving that by battling to spread justice. Polls
also suggest that Americans are resolved to fight in Iraq until the
job is done.

Sen. Leahy thinks that he can smell another Vietnam. Not this
time, senator.

History will provide us with how true Mr. Gelernter's opinion will out. I for one hope it comes true, and the Boxer's and Leahy's of the world slither away. Any political party that wishes failure on a country (like Iraq) for political gain will be sadly (or gladly) reminded in future elections.

Friday, October 14, 2005

New Director Appointed to Jazz and Blues Festival

And the new leader is...............four year assistant director of the Monterey Blues Festival, Glenn Maxon. Yes, relation to the ol' "Maxons Music" back in the 70's. Yes the same Glenn Maxon who was the first Humboldt county state champion in high school wrestling. And two weeks later he became the National Greco-Roman champion. All that at the age of 17 or 19. It was hard to tell how old the sucker was. Maxon waited another twenty-five years to get his music production degree a CSU, where his department chair pronounced Glenn the next "Bill Grahm".
(Side note: His daughter graduated the same year at the same school.)

This is just a recorded evolution of music on the north coast and I am sure we will enjoy the talent and product Glenn will bring to us.



UPDATE: Glenn is also getting inducted into the CR Sports Hall of Fame this month.
We should all feel so proud and fortunate.

p.s. ...... I have a history on this feller........ :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Proposal to Break up Ninth Circuit

Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and John Ensign (R-Nev.) have
introduced the Court of Appeals Restructuring and
Modernization Act or CARMA (S. 1845), which is designed to
improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the court by reducing
its size and creating a new Twelfth Circuit. CARMA was also
co-sponsored by Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska).

If I had my druthers I could find a better way to split these idiots up in the Ninth "Short" Circuit. After making the declaration the we are not "One Nation Under God", how could you take anything this bunch of looneys come up with? And to think the get 14,000 cases a year.
This is been going on for far too long.

full story here......

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Analisis of a Justice

I wanna be like Mike.......................

Wednesday, October 05, 2005Applying the Principles of War to Harriet Miers SCOTUS Nomination

Major Mike

MOOSEMUSS. Yes, MOOSEMUSS. That is what came to mind when the discussion amongst the right about the Harriet Miers nomination went into full tilt yesterday…MOOSEMUSS.
Hat tip to Mr. Atos for planting the seed with his Bangalore Torpedo piece, and after all the rancor yesterday, I thought, MOOSEMUSS.

I don’t buy the theory that in an instant, that the President, who incidentally, got the GWOT right, and the John Roberts nomination right, who has Dick Cheney as his VP and Condi Rice as his SOS…blew a gasket and has gotten this completely wrong. I thought…maybe …MOOSEMUSS.

I think that the President had many possible choices here, but I think he chose to be a bit more devious than he is being given credit for. I think he, as Mr. Atos points out, is taking this opportunity to covertly attack the leadership and structure of the Democrat base. Why do I think that? MOOSEMUSS.

MOOSEMUSS is the easily learned acronym that highlights the nine, generally accepted, Principles of War. Notice I didn’t say battle. Battle…a general encounter between armies, ships of war, or airplanes. War…a period of declared and open hostilities. For the uninitiated, fighting wars…protracted periods of combat, and fighting battles…encounters between warring forces, are two entirely different matters and require two entirely different schemes. One, war, requires strategic thinking, and battles, require tactical thinking. These are two entirely different operational levels.

So, when I think MOOSEMUSS, I am not considering the tactical, I am considering the strategic.
Let’s look at the Miers nomination and see if, somehow, the guy who got the GWOT, may also get the Principles of War, when it comes to waging a long term strategic campaign against the Democrats.

M – Mass – Concentrate Combat Power at decisive time and place.
I think the President gets it…this is not the time to force an all out fight with the Democrats…he is not willing to expend all of his political capital in order to push through a more controversial nomination. Let’s chip away until the mid-term election, but let’s don’t give them any additional ammo going into them.

O – Objective – Direct every military operation against a clearly defined, decisive and obtainable objective.
Again, this nomination, while important, is not the final conservative objective…I would view that as the ultimate emasculation of the Democrat Party to the point it is ineffective as an organization. This nomination is an intermediate objective, but not the final objective…no need to expend all of your ammo here.

O – Offensive – Seize, retain and exploit the initiative.
This nomination is a home run here. The Dems were obviously preparing for the worst…basically any other, very conservative judge, they were ready. They would have come out of the box on Monday morning with their canned offensive and dominated the evening news with their media blitz. The President, with this nomination, redefined the fight, put the Dems on defense, and is able to maintain the initiative, against the Democrat party for the foreseeable future. Harry Reid endorsing Miers, is a much a capitulation as it is an endorsement. The President put the Dems on their heels and took away their ammo…

S – Surprise – Strike the enemy at a time, a place and in a manner for which he is unprepared.
See above- Offensive. This move completely disarmed the Dems. They were immediately frozen, and have yet to get any traction on this issue, in any coherent way. This was achieved by coming across with a surprise nomination, not by attacking their prepared defenses.
E - Economy of Force – Allocate minimum combat power to secondary efforts

This is not to diminish the importance of this nomination, but clearly the President’s nominee will be confirmed with about zero political effort. This allows the President to maintain his momentum without getting bogged down with this nomination. Virtually no expenditure of political capital is required.

M – Maneuver - Place the enemy in a position of disadvantage through flexible application of combat power.
Again, suffice it to say that the President did not charge into the Dems main defenses with a nominee that they were anticipating…he went widely around them and gained the offensive advantage as a result. In football terms, he’s off and running on a nifty end-around.

U - Unity of Command – For every objective, ensure unity of effort under on responsible commander.

In the end President Bush will be remembered for a lot of things, this nomination being one of them, but he has demonstrated an overt willingness to accept responsibility for his decisions and stick by them with confidence and certainty. This is what we ask of our leaders, and I see no reason why he should have abdicated responsibility for this choice to the far right, independent legal scholars, or the tooth fairy. In the end this is his choice to make, and all of the MMQBs should sit back and watch the start of the game before predicting gloom and doom. A committee’s choice on this one would have produced slightly different, but equally as contentious commentary.

S – Security – Never permit the enemy to acquire an unexpected advantage.
Without knowing the exact information the Dems had on the “A” list nominees, it would be impossible to know where the fight would head after the nomination was made public. By going to the “A-“ list, the President did not put himself in the position of losing control of the nomination unexpectedly. By surprising the Dems on this one, control of this nomination will remain in the hands of the Republicans.

S – Simplicity – Prepare clear, complicated plans and clear, concise orders to ensure understanding.

An extremely simple plan that out maneuvered and out thought the Dems.

MOOSEMUSS corollary ... perfect can be the enemy of good enough.
In the end, pushing through the “perfect” conservative judge would have likely expended a tremendous amount of political capital…the President’s as well as that of many Senators. Isn’t this plan a bit more palatable in that light. We may still have considerable momentum going into the mid-term elections…remember this is not a single battle.
One last thought…how are the way-Lefties going to respond when the Supreme Court battles they anticipated never materialized, and the mainstream liberal leadership looks ineffective again? Fragmented? Discontented? Disorganized? Inept? I suggest that avoiding a battle here, and out maneuvering the Dems, will cause them more problems than Harriet Miers will ever cause conservative Republicans.

posted by Major Mike at 12:02 PM