Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Babi Yar

Except for some fringe nuts here and there, no one denies that the Germans, having decided in January 1942 that the final solution to the Jewish question was to be murder on an industrial scale, went on to murder 6 million European Jews before the end of the war. Part of that awful toll was the so called Holocaust by bullets, carried out by Nazi Einsatzgruppen mainly in newly conquered parts of the Soviet Union. One of the earlier massacres took place in a ravine north west of Kiev, the capital of the Ukraine, on the 29th and 30th of September, 1941, four months before the Wannsee Conference. The name of the ravine, near one of the Jewish cemeteries in Kiev, is Babi Yar.

The German forces secured Kiev on September 19, 1941. Over the next week, Soviet NKDV sappers conducted a bombing campaign which was immediately blamed on the Jews. On September 26, 1941, a notice was posted informing all Jews (the notice used the word "Kikes") in and around Kiev to report at 8:00 am on September 29 at Dorogozhitskaya Street, next to the Jewish cemetery there. Failure to assemble was punishable by death.

Since there was no history of large scale massacres by the Germans at that time, the Jews obeyed and lined up at the appointed time and place. Historians tell us that they believed they were being relocated, a practice which did then have a history following the German conquest of Poland. After a few exemplary murders to set the tone and get the group in motion, they were marched to the ravine where they were told to undress and then rushed in groups of ten or so into the ravine, There they were told to lie down and were then shot by rifles and machine pistols. Over 33,000 men women and children were killed over the rest of the day and the next. It is considered to be the largest single massacre of Jews by bullets during the war.

It was not the end of the slaughter. Over the next year and a half, nearly 270,000 more, many of them Soviet prisoners of war, but mostly Gypsies, were murdered there--shot and buried by collapsing the walls of the ravine onto the bodies.

Starting in 1943, when the Red Army was on the march to liberate the Ukraine, an attempted cover up began and most of the bodies of those murdered in the ravine were dug up and burned.

Intermixed in the photos of the cover up activities are other photos of the original massacre. Most of the overseers seem to be other than German soldiers, and it is my belief that some of the killing and much of the crowd control was done by Ukrainian police. The last three photos are not the saddest but the most graphic as the naked women, some with infants in their arms face the penultimate line up and in the last photo, are actually shot.

I am reminded of the never-dying hatred of the Jews displayed in Babi Yar when I read recently of the return of open anti-Semitism in Western Europe and the ravings of Ahmadinijad in Iran, who denies that there was a first Holocaust as his government feverishly prepares to cause a second.

UPDATE: I am informed by this article about the 75th anniversary of the slaughter, that there were slaughters of Jews with higher body counts than here. Sorry. It's difficult to keep up with the count.


Monday, September 27, 2010


An Inappropriate Self Sentence

One of the corrupt prosecutors of the late Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK), Nicholas Marsh, took his own life this past weekend. An eternity cut off from God for being an overzealous prosecutor. Seems a little excessive to me. Maybe the guy had other things on his mind which drove him to self murder.


Thursday, September 23, 2010


The End of Summer

Fall came officially this early morning (a little late) and, as if to punctuate the change, there was a trace of new snow on top of Mount Evans west of here.

The Northern Ocean sea ice extent has passed its nadir last week and is on the rise. The Summer melting was worse than last year but better than the two years before that. In extent, the sea ice bottomed out just under 5 million square kilometers, or an area the size of India and Afghanistan. Since India is the 7th largest country, not quite the ice free ocean Warmie True Believers like Colorado's Mark Serreze tell us is just around the corner. Or not.

In Antarctica, the sea ice area was well above normal all during the Southern Winter, but two weeks ago it took a nose dive and is now below the 1979-2000 normal line. It peaked just above 16 million square kilometers, the second highest extent in our pitifully short period of satellite measurement.



Thought of the Day

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee hopes to divert attention from the chaos that is the Obama Administration with ads charging GOP candidates with secret plots to destroy Social Security. This is the political equivalent of showing Reefer Madness to 9th graders in 2010. Is there a single voter who believes such nonsense for even a minute or is it just the product of a weariness so profound that not even paid operatives can be expected to try and find something from the past 22 months worth selling to the public as an achievement.

Really, there is nothing to run on? Nothing at all?

No, there isn't. The deep gloom that has settled on the country is only in part economic. Hard times have come and gone before, but in the modern networked age never has so obviously a clueless set of leaders been so completely and obviously inept, tone deaf and at the same time inarticulate. President Bush wasn't a great communicator, but he limited the damage he did to his own case by not conducting townhalls built around calls for civility while the brass knuckles were still on the fist.

The anti-Obama tsunami seems to be growing, and in unexpected places like New York and West Virginia. The Congress adds fuel to the fire every time it meets, and the president is now on notice that even hand-picked audiences cannot avoid embarrassing him. His cheerleaders want him off the teleprompter until they hear him off the teleprompter.

And his back-up act is Joe Biden

Hugh Hewitt


Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Thought of the Day

So if I had been in Briffa’s shoes and found that the actual temperature record for the 20th century contradicted what my proxy data seemed to be showing, I would have concluded that the proxy was invalid and could not be used to support any conclusions. That is what any honest scientist would have done. Briffa, however, ignored the glaring invalidity of his proxy data and pretended to draw conclusions about temperatures for the last 1,000 years or so from it.

John J. Ray

Hiding the decline with a "trick" is also the opposite of good, honest science. Ergo...


Monday, September 20, 2010


Thoughts of the Day

Take this no-name pastor from an obscure church who was threatening to burn the Koran. He didn’t burn any buildings or women and children. He didn’t even burn a book. He hadn’t actually laid a finger on a Koran, and yet the mere suggestion that he might do so prompted the President of the United States to denounce him, and the Secretary of State, and the commander of US forces in Afghanistan, various G7 leaders, and golly, even Angelina Jolie. President Obama has never said a word about honor killings of Muslim women. Secretary Clinton has never said a word about female genital mutilation. General Petraeus has never said a word about the rampant buggery of pre-pubescent boys by Pushtun men in Kandahar. But let an obscure man in Florida so much as raise the possibility that he might disrespect a book – an inanimate object – and the most powerful figures in the western world feel they have to weigh in.

Mark Steyn

Prof. Fred Gottheil told Front Page Magazine that he compiled a list of 675 email addresses from 900 signatures on a 2009 petition authored by Dr. David Lloyd, professor of English at the University of Southern California, urging the U.S. to abandon its ally, Israel. Prof. Gottheil discovered that six of the signers, who hailed from more than 150 college campuses, were members of his own faculty.

“Would these same 900 sign onto a statement expressing concern about human rights violations in the Muslim Middle East, such as honor killing, wife beating, female genital mutilation, and violence against gays and lesbians?” he wondered. “I felt it was worth a try.”

The results? “Almost non existent,” he told Front Page editor Jamie Glazov. Only 27 of the 675 “self-described social-justice seeking academics” agreed to sign Gottheil’s Statement of Concern – less than 5 percent of the total who had publicly called for the censure of Israel for human rights violations.

Fred Gottheil (mostly)


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Thought of the Day

Is the person who has spent years in school goofing off, acting up or fighting-- squandering the tens of thousands of dollars that the taxpayers have spent on his education-- supposed to end up with his income aligned with that of the person who spent those same years studying to acquire knowledge and skills that would later be valuable to himself and to society at large?

Thomas Sowell

Almost always well worth reading, Sowell here makes clear a persistent left/right divide regarding the amorphous but feel good idea, "social justice." The right demands freedom and strives only for equality of opportunity; the left demands equality of outcome and freedom is secondary. The left's idea is unworkable and wrong. A child in kindergarten knows it's unfair to reward the goof-off and punish the hard worker, but that's precisely what the left believes in.


Monday, September 13, 2010


Selling Out -- Recent TV Commercials With Rock Miusic

Seems like a lot of rock musicians from the 80s lately selling out. Who can blame them with the music business being what it is.

How Do You Like Me Now--The Heavy for Kia automobiles

Fascination--The Human League for Samsung Android phone

Under the Milky Way--Sia (cover) for Lincoln automobiles

Major Tom--Shiny Toy Guns (cover) also for Lincoln automobiles

I Ran--Flock of Seagulls for XM Radio

Happy Together--The Turtles for Clinique

From the Morning--Nick Drake for AT&T

Love Train--O-Jays for Coors light

Saturday Night--Bay City Rollers for Planters

For Your Love--The Yardbirds for Zales

Smoke on the Water--Deep Purple (cover) for Dodge

Honey Tree--The Mostar Driving Club for Honda

Silly Boy--The Blue Van for Samsung Behold phone

Fly Me Away--Annie Little for Amazon Kindle

OK some of the latter ones were not rock at all, at least not the rock I recognize.



Thought of the Day

By far the biggest problem the Republican coalition has right now is moderates who refuse to accept defeat at the hands of conservatives. Think Dede Scozzafava endorsing the Democrat in NY-23. Think Charlie Crist and Arlen Specter bailing the party and running against the Republican when it became clear that they would lose their primaries. Think Lincoln Chafee currently running as an independent for Governor of Rhode Island despite the NRSC spending millions to help him defeat a conservative in the primary. I defy Meghan McCain to identify a conservative candidate who acted or behaved in this way towards the party after a primary loss.

Leon H. Wolf

Mr. Wolf made this observation while writing a review of Meghan McCain's book, Dirty, Sexy Politics. I don't think he liked it very much. We might soon have to add Sen. Murkowski (R-AK) to the list of moderate Republicans who can't let go.


Sunday, September 12, 2010


Thought of the Day

If Obama can speak lucidly about a subject as thorny as race, he can surely do a far more specific job of telling the story of how we got to this economic impasse. He must join the many who are talking about why the top 1 percent of American earners now take home nearly a quarter of Americans’ total income — perhaps the single most revealing indicator of how three decades of greed and free-market absolutism have eviscerated America’s fundamental ideals of fairness.

Former Theater Critic Frank Rich

My fundamental ideal of fairness is to have the Government maximize the conditions of freedom so that we Americans can work hard to approach and join the top 1%. My fundamental ideal of fairness could never include the government redistributing income a la Robin Hood. The left elevates equality of outcome over freedom--a fundamentally unAmerican ideal.



Why Time Magazine is Becoming Ever More Irrelevant

On as important a subject as the history of al Qaeda on the 9th anniversary of its sneak attack on America, Time distorts the true history regarding Iraq to take the false, anti-Bush line and remove all mention of American military sacrifice and skill in defeating the franchise. Behold the left's official first draft of history:

The only al-Qaeda "chapter" to gain any traction was the one that came into existence in Iraq in response to the U.S. invasion, and thrived while its presence was tolerated as a force multiplier by mainstream Sunni insurgents. But the group's ideology and propensity for vicious sectarian murder of Shi'ites turned the insurgents against them, and eventually the bulk of the insurgency turned on al-Qaeda, with many Sunni insurgents going onto the U.S. payroll under the rubric of the "Awakening" movement.
The Chapter of al Qaeda which became known as al Qaeda in Mesopotamia and which we called al Qaeda in Iraq ("AQI") started up in the Kurdish region (under a different name) shortly after the US invasion of Afghanistan in 1991 kicked al Qaeda out of Afghanistan. It flourished there and after the cold version of Gulf War I got hot in March, 2003, it drew reinforcements from all over the Muslim part of the World because al Qaeda really wanted (and I believe expected) AQI to punish and defeat the American forces in the heart of the Caliphate. But we kicked its ass and nearly eradicated it. No one is forgetting the help of the locals in the Awakening, et al. Just as no one forgets the vital importance of the Northern Alliance to our success in kicking al Qaeda and a lot of the Taliban out of Afghanistan. However, not to mention the troops specifically tasked with destroying AQI, who did a magnificent job, and only mention the helpful locals is a distortion of true history which no red blooded American patriot should abide.

It would be like discussing the Little Big Horn battle on June 25, 1876 and only mentioning the Crow scouts and making no mention of the 7th Cavalry and its leaders other than to say that the Crow scouts were on the American payroll.

Mother of God. Is all the American media this corrupt or just ignorant?


Friday, September 10, 2010


Thought of the Day

If Obama can rev up Democratic voters and win back some independents, and if his party can get everything right in terms of mechanics (fundraising, advertising, get-out-the-vote efforts, etc.), then perhaps with all these small changes the Democrats have a chance of protecting their House majority. Nevertheless, a poll here, a speech there only offers so much reassurance. Democrats should keep the panic button close by. It still might come in handy.

David Corn

Rev up the base? Win back some independents? Tall freakin' orders in the next 7 weeks. Mr. Corn clings for dear life to the recent Gallup poll finding the generic ballot tied. Never mind that the more reliable ones, regarding likely voters, have the Republican advantage at plus 12 and 13 respectively. Notice too all the caveats and wishful thinking. And then he ends with it may be as bad as every one believes. This is a Democratic true believer's pep talk.

I feel better already.


Wednesday, September 08, 2010


History and Remembrance

Here's an old post I did nearly 3 years ago about the Little Rock 9 and this morning, one of them, Carlotta Walls, gave a pretty good speech to the Arapahoe County Republican Mens Club, who gave her standing ovations both before and after she spoke. She says we've come a long way since 1957 but still have a lot to do regarding race in America. Like what, I think, but don't ask? I thought it a little weird that she seemed more critical of President Eisenhower than of racist Governor Faubus. Maybe I took her out of context.

Before that, office mate and Arapahoe Republican big wig Nathan Chambers took apart Dan Maes and then shook his hand. I thought, first, the evisceration and then the handshake. Maes might have done himself some good today, but I was already going to vote for him. I am a party man and believe that party trumps person, as Mike Rosen used to say.


Monday, September 06, 2010


The Weirdest Thing

I played golf on Saturday with Austin and Andrew and we walked and it was rough in the heat but everything was OK through 4:00 am on Sunday; and then at 6:00 am it felt as if someone was stabbing me in the back, just below the inside end of the shoulder blade. It was a 6/10 on the pain scale and there was nothing I could do to position my body to make the pain less. I took over the counter pain medication and then took the real stuff as well as a muscle relaxer. There was a little tingling and numbness down my left arm and into the two little fingers. There was a lot of weakness there too. After the pain medication took effect, the only thing bugging me was the weakness, tingling and numbness in the arm and hand. It's still the same today but now the left arm hurts as well.

I interpreted the pain numbness and tingling in the left arm to be along the ulnar nerve distribution pattern. And I guess that I slept in a bad position and caused a rhomboid muscle to spasm and the spasm caused a temporary (I hope) nerve problem down my arm.

I'll keep you updated.

Labels: ,

Saturday, September 04, 2010


News on the No Energy Economy

One of the lasting legacies of my old friend Bill Ritter's tenure as Governor, besides the permanent lack of widespread oil and gas drilling, is the stupid mandate that within 10 years, a full 30% of Colorado's electricity production come from inferior, intermittent, stupendously expensive "green" generation, like wind generators and photovoltaic arrays. The Governor somehow got the idea that there would be cheap unicorns and pixie dust to power our energy needs. Unfortunately, not only are they not cheap, they don't, er, actually exist. So the local monopoly energy providers are shutting down perfectly good (and relatively cheap) coal powered boilers and purchasing power from sources many times more expensive (when they are actually producing electricity, which is seldom). Proving that there really is no such thing as a free lunch, the massive added cost will indeed be passed on to us, despite a cynical and dishonest so called 2% cap. The anticipated additional cost per Colorado customer is $2,800. Here are the details.

Money quote:

Up until 2007, Xcel was obligated to provide electricity at "least cost." Now, however, the Public Utilities Commission says that climate change — rather than affordability — is the "main driving force" behind resource planning. Xcel customers are poorer as a result, no matter how the politicians spin the costs of green energy.
Thanks, Bill.


Thursday, September 02, 2010


Margaret Carlson and the Big Lie

Although I agree with her observation that President Obama, during his No Victory in Iraq speech on Tuesday, looked very tired, it pains me to hear yet again the oh so tired and totally false Democrat meme, "Bush lied, people died." Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more.

She starts off about Iraq and then switches to Afghanistan and the horrible ending of Pat Tillman's life there from friendly fire. The facts regarding his death were indeed kept from his family and the general public, at least for a while. Since we assume that the military command knew the real way Tillman died and did not reveal that truth, the first versions of how he died were almost certainly lies and not mere mistakes. (That they were "white" lies designed to let the family et al. think he met a more heroic end doesn't seem to matter much to Ms. Carlson). But then there is this bit of cognitive dissonance:

When you start a war with such a big lie, the others you’re tempted to tell seem smaller and get easier.
Unless you're a Truther, or just really stupid (but I repeat myself), you can't think the war in Afghanistan was started with a big lie. Ms. Carlson must be referring to Iraq. She mentions in passing the "credible reports" that Bush wanted to invade Iraq before 9/11. The Bush administration was indeed sensitive to Iraq before 9/11. More on why below. But that mere fact that no stockpiles of chemical weapons were found following the March 2003 invasion does not mean that they were never there (chemical weapons were indeed used by Saddam Hussein against the Kurds repeatedly, and to a horrible effect). It is quite possible that existing stockpiles were transferred to Syria before the resumption of Gulf War I ground fighting. Even if we discount the credible reports of last minute movement of WMD, it simply was not a lie to say Saddam Hussein had them, unless one knew that Saddam Hussein did not have them. Only a few fringe Democrats very stupid (again I repeat myself) think that President Bush actually knew there were no WMD but said that there were. Ms. Carlson walks up to that line with her "contrary to reports from arms inspectors on the ground." The consensus (and nearly every bit of intelligence is a consensus) from every nation in the loop, including ours, was that Saddam Hussein had kept his WMD stockpile and was gaming the weapons inspectors. Even the lamest of Democrats in the throes of Bush Derangement Syndrome will admit, on proper cross examination, that Bush actually believed wrongly that Hussein had WMD. Not a lie at all; at worst a mistake.

But I submit that it was not a mistake to end properly Gulf War I and if one actually looks at the recent history of Iraq (which sadly Ms. Carlson doesn't) one can easily see why it was proper to invade Iraq in 2003. Saddam Hussein's support of terrorists (Baghdad as the terrorist retirement home and the $25,000 to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers, etc.) and his use of WMD in Iraq's war against Iran and domestically, and, most importantly, his invasion of Kuwait which caused a grand coalition of nations to go to war against him, which war ended merely in a cease fire with conditions, none of which were met by Hussein--all these things singled out Iraq as a nation under a sadistic despot which had to be dealt with. (David Harsanyi asks in a recent thoughtful column why Saddam was deposed and not others? This is why, David. History.)

And history is why this paragraph by Ms. Carlson is so maddeningly inane.

Republicans were up in arms that Obama kissed off Bush’s role with a brief, nothing-burger mention -- “no one can doubt President Bush’s support for our troops or his love of country,” he said -- and didn’t give him credit for the surge of American troops in 2007. But there would have been no surge had there been no decision to go to war in the first place. You don’t get credit for improvements made necessary by catastrophes you create.
The war was started by Hussein when he invaded Kuwait. President Bush properly ended it after many years, many mistakes and some tough fights won through our military's sacrifice and skill. President Bush just didn't decide to free Iraqis from the horrible, sadistic yoke of oppression out of the blue in 2002 and 2003. There were things going on there which needed to be addressed and these things needed to be addressed before 9/11 made them imperative. The result is that Iraq is now an Islamic Republic, if they can keep it. Worth it, in my book, but just barely.

Saddam invaded, people died, we won. That's actual history's meme. Democrats lose credibility every time they ignore and distort actual history. Ms. Carlson has very little left, I fear.



Seeing the Same Thing

I made a very safe prediction about the midterm elections a few days ago. University of Virginia's Larry Sabato just came out with his predictions, which, I believe, are remarkably similar--47 House seats pick-up, 8 or 9 in the Senate.

Great minds, etc.


Wednesday, September 01, 2010


Photos From the Front

The little brown gun gets all tricked out and goes to war. Although I'm not completely certain, this serious weapon seems to be a military version of the Ruger Mini 14, numbered in military parlance the AC-556K. It shoots the NATO 5.56mm at about 750 rpm and the receiver is a little longer than the civilian model as it has a selector switch (for single, three shot burst and full auto) near the back right hand side. This one has a sliding wire stock and folded bi-pod as well as a fairly serious looking scope. This is U.S. Army Spc. Andrew Powell providing security during a presence patrol to the village of Margah at Combat Outpost Margah in Paktika province, Afghanistan, on May 6, 2010. Powell is assigned to 4th Platoon, ABU Company, 1st Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment (Air Assault). The photo is by Sean McKenna, US Army.



Second Thought of the Day

The only evidence for Obama's Christianity is that he faithfully attended the Rev. Jeremiah Wright's Trinity United Church of Christ for 20 years.

Yes, the guy bellowing "God damn America!" is the one vouching for Obama's Christianity. That's like saying you got sober with the help of your A.A. sponsor Lindsay Lohan.

Ann Coulter



Thought of the Day

So was Iraq worth the cost? And could Obama have cited anything positive other than banalities? In some sense, that was asked post facto of every war — whether it was the Civil War, the Spanish-American War, WWI, Korea, or Vietnam. The truth about Iraq is that, for all the tragedy and the loss, the U.S. military performed a miracle. After nearly seven years, a constitutional government endures in that country. It is too often forgotten that all 23 of the writs for war passed by the Congress in 2002 — from enforcing the Gulf I resolutions and stopping the destruction of the Kurds and Marsh Arabs, to preventing the Iraqi state promotion of terrorism, ending suicide bounties on the West Bank, and stopping Iraq from invading or attacking neighbors or trying to acquire WMD — were met and satisfied by the U.S. military. It is also too often forgotten that, as a result, Libya gave up its WMD program; Dr. Khan’s nuclear franchise was shut down; Syria left Lebanon; and American troops in Saudi Arabia, put there as protection against Saddam, were withdrawn.

Victor Davis Hanson

And, as Mr. Hanson points out, we destroyed al Qaeda in Iraq and proved the strong horse there, to the credit of our forces and their leadership and to the benefit of our nation's security. The Democratic response thereto, that we created AQI by invading, which is hooey (the only thing that changed in March '03 was the name of the organization) takes absolutely nothing away from that accomplishment.


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?