Sunday, January 30, 2005

Democratic Iraq

Today is a day of reckoning – of sorts – because today is election-day in Iraq. The outcome is a foregone conclusion – the Shi’ites will win the majority with the Sunni’s having a minority position. The new assembly will be divided fairly equally between the religious and the secular with the Kurds representing a strong and pivotal force. While this scenario may vary somewhat it is probably close to the truth. However, the real issue is what comes next and what are the ramifications of the new Iraq?

There is little doubt but that this is a historic event but it is also a strategic one and the geopolitical ramifications are the truly important ones. The Iranians (Persians) have not had a happy history with Iraq, much like the French and British. If they are not actually at war they are preparing for the next one. The Iranians are positioned between Russia, Afghanistan, and Iraq and sit on a pool of oil and warm water ports. The Russians have always coveted a warm water port and the Persian Gulf has always been attractive. The Afghans are really not much of a threat since they would rather fight each other but with the recent events there, a democratic Afghanistan represents a destabilizing force if not an actual military threat. However, there seems to be little doubt but that Osama Bin Laden is in Iran either physically or spiritually in the form of his Al Qu’eda organization. Either situation is a threat to the Iranian theocracy. The Americans want bin Laden and they could easily deliver an ultimatum to Iran to either hand him over or they will come and get him. This is an unlikely scenario but one that the Ayatollah’s can’t ignore. As long as the Al Qu’eda are hiding there they represent a destabilizing force because of their militant dedication to Shar’ia Law in a country that is already restive because of the stridency of the Ayatollah’s.

With a democratic Iraq on their doorstep the Iranians will certainly feel threatened. It seems obvious that their reaction is to push forward on their nuclear program with the idea that they could resort to nuclear war if attacked. It is unlikely they will be attacked because the Iraqi’s have their own situation to deal with, the Russians aren’t really strong enough and have their hands full in Chechnia. The US won’t attack Iran either, but it seems obvious that the CIA will work with the new Iraqi government to disrupt the Iranian political landscape with the objective of overthrowing the Ayatollah’s. However, this is almost a sideshow compared to what may happen elsewhere.

Syria is a dictatorship that is not overly popular and one that maintains its legitimacy by attacking and blaming the US and Israel for everything from bad weather to the rampant poverty that characterizes all of the old Ottoman Empire. This wouldn’t be much of a problem, even with a democratic Iraq on their doorstep, but the Palestinians are finally coming to their senses and beginning to understand that violence isn’t the answer. They have destroyed their economy, their leaders have stolen all of their money and blamed others, and they have nothing left but poverty and unemployment. With the new elections and the possibility of peace with Israel the Syrians are left with very little in the way of excuses to continue to subjugate their people. Quite probably, the Lebanese will demand that Syria withdraw since there will no longer be any reason for them to stay if Israel and Palestine are at peace.

The Jordanians and Egyptians have seen the handwriting on the wall for some time and are attempting to adjust to the new realities but the Gulf States are growing more unstable by the day. Once the Iraqi’s are firmly in control and have a strong military, the terrorists who have gravitated to Iraq will be forced out and this is already happening. The attacks of terrorists on the governments of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia have escalated and will continue to do so. These are very corrupt and repressive regimes. They are rich but the wealth is controlled by very few. The upper classes live a very prosperous and western life style – albeit in private – but the terrorists want to return to the Ninth Century. It is unlikely that the terrorists will actually win, but it is highly probable that they will topple all of the dictatorships and monarchies that characterize the Gulf States. These states have large populations of immigrants who have no rights and no real access to the wealth. This is an unstable situation and one the terrorists can leverage, at least to the point of toppling the regimes. Then the Iraqi democracy becomes a paradigm for what could be. The current regimes are very threatened and they really don’t know what to do. They exist only because of the US power but it seems clear that that power is aimed at supporting the people and the government they select – not one imposed on them. Obviously, the US isn’t going to pull away from Kuwait or Saudi Arabia but that is a far cry from supporting them against their own people.

So the Iraqi elections are not just historic, they have vast geopolitical ramifications – ramifications that have just begun to manifest themselves. The Age of Kings ended with the French Revolution, it seems very likely that the Age of Islam is about to close with the elections in Iraq.

Sunday, January 23, 2005


It is fascinating to read the papers of the Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and to see how the relations between America and the French developed during a very pivotal time for both countries. Clearly Jefferson was a Francophile and felt the French were our friends. However, this was the 1790’s and as we know things weren’t going all that well in Europe and France in particular.

Perhaps one of the most interesting things is so the French Revolution through contemporary eyes. I think for most people today we view the French Revolution from the perspective of Charles Dickens book “A Tale of Two Cities” where the French are hardly seen as sympathetic no matter how just their cause. Of course for those who are more oriented to history we have the advantage of hindsight and can see how the excesses of the French (Robespierre, Marat, and Danton) lead inexorably to the creation of a military dictatorship under Napoleon. But all of these things are after the fact and we have the benefit of knowing what happened next, a luxury denied Jefferson, Washington, and the new American Republic.

We tend to forget that the American Revolution was actually just one theater in a global war that had been going on prior to 1776 and raged off and on throughout the period. In fact this European War had been going on during the reign of Louis XV and then under Louis XVI as well. Wars cost money and this one was no exception and France was essentially bankrupt. Louis XVI was inept at almost everything and had no ability to see what was going on around him. Consequently the population was restive at first and then moved to rebellion. However, during this period our friends the French were leaning on the US for money owed. Obviously this was a legitimate debt but France typically approached this demand in their usual arrogant fashion.

However, Jefferson accepted this demand in good grace primarily because he really hated the British (an interesting historical footnote) and the French were (as usual) fighting the British (and the Dutch). This formed the background to the final upheaval that we know as the French Revolution. The correspondence between Jefferson and the American Envoys in Paris are interesting. To support the King and not support the Revolutionaries would be hypocritical since the Americans had just rebelled against their King. Still there was a lot of sympathy for Louis and the general feeling was that he should go into exile. No one was really in favor of executing the King. As the terror progressed the attitude of the Americans in Paris really turned against the Revolution but publicly they continued to support the Revolution. Jefferson supported the Revolution to the end but privately he made it very clear that he supported the Revolution but not the Revolutionaries. Furthermore, some of the American diplomats felt that the situation could only end in one way and that was the rise either of a new King (unlikely) or a strongman (Napoleon was unknown at the time).

The policy of neutrality between America and the European powers was orchestrated by Jefferson but as we know today it led inevitably to the problems of 1812. Jefferson was anti-war (and a founding Democrat) and the lesson here is the same lesson that the Democrats have never learned and that is while war may be ugly, sometimes a war now prevents a much greater war in the future. Siding with the British might have constrained the terror and prevented the rise of Napoleon. At the least it would have prevented the war of 1812. And as we see today, the Democrats continue to be anti-war – any war – and simply fail to understand that some people only understand naked power.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Thomas Jefferson

Currently I am reading about Thomas Jefferson and his battles with Alexander Hamilton. This is a complete history that has been painfully researched from the Library of Congress and personal letters from a variety of contemporary sources. This is fascinating reading for a variety of reasons, but one that has most impressed me are the casual references to George Washington, then President of the United States. While Washington is someone whom I greatly admire, he is almost always turned into a marble statue, devoid of any personality, but here we see him attempting to balance between two cabinet officers who are in great disagreement and whose rhetoric becomes more inflamatory by the day. Washington tries to steer a middle course because both men have merits. Woven through this piece is the French Revolution and what we now call "The Terror". Interestingly enough, this didn't carry the same horror at the time as it does now. The position of the Americans was essentially neutral but leaning toward the people rather than the government. The rationale was that to call the French Revolutionaries criminal was to repudiate what we had just done and to set a double standard. It was at this time that Washington and Jefferson set the policy of the United States that endures to this day and that is that we will recognize and support any government brought to power by the will of the people. Admittedly this policy has had some strain put on it because that is how Lenin came to power as well as many other dictators -- the old one person, one vote, one time (Saddam Hussein ring a bell?). Still it is a policy that is fundamentally sound. Not surprisingly, it was the Northern liberals (Bostonians) who went around calling themselves "Citzen" and "Citizeness" while it was the southern pragmentists who thought that was over the top and the revolutionaries were going beyond any acceptable bounds. Nevertheless, Louis XVI was truly seen as a despot who basically got what was coming to him. Fascinating reading.

Perhaps what is more interesting is that there is not one reference to the slave holding status of any of the principals. The focus is strictly on the deeds of the people involved and their personal situation is only mentioned in passing and there is no attempt to subject these people to contemporary standards. In fact their spelling is left intact, which reflects the rather relaxed rules of spelling of the time. The author of this work was born in the 19th century and died around 1960 at the age of 92. A much more reliable historian than what passes for historians today.

Thursday, January 13, 2005


I continue to be swamped with my consulting activities and these appear to be expanding. This is limiting the amount of time I have to blog, but here are some random thoughts about recent events.

Indonesia, the worlds most populous Islamic country wants the Americans out of the country ASAP. This is another vivid example of how the Muslims punish their own people in the name of Allah. There is more concern about the people seeing America in a positive light than in actually saving the lives of the people. Better they should die of disease or starvation than think Americans are good.

The attacks on Christianity continue unabated in this country under the guise of the "separation of church and state -- ala the Constitution. Of course the Constitution doesn't actually say that, it merely prohibits Congress from making laws that would deny the right to worship. The interpretation came from the Warren Court -- which was the court that has virtually destroyed American values. It is time that we had a Chief Justice that is as extreme right as Warren was left in order to bring some semblance of rationality back to the country and the Constitution.

An article in the paper today where some nut wants Congress to stop paying for circumcisions in infants because they are medically unnecessary. This would save $2M a year (a laughable sum in light of the expendenditures of the government). Of course this procedure is medically unneccessary but speaking as a male who has lived in both conditions I can assure you that circumcision is more hygenic and a great deal more convenient. There is a whole group of men out there who are fixated on uncircumcised penises and want the entire country to succumb to what they think is more "cosmetic". Jeeze aren't there more important things to worry about?

Speaking of -- well things sexual -- a young man who dated my daughter has popped up after a number of years. He was gay, then straight, then married, then divorced, and now gay again. He has had a number of jobs but no career jobs because each job has been just that -- a job and unrelated to the previous ones. His dad is the typical Irishman. He has a brother who is big and a clone of his father. He has an IQ somewhere between a radish and a clam but he is very masculine or at least what the world views as masculine. This young man is slight, theatrical, and artistic so hardly the model that the father sees as being desireable traits in a man. Therefore, this kid has spent his life trying to be what he thinks his father wants. He is failing and is now totally screwed up. Ironically, he had a best friend in high school and he and his friend had a special relationship. The friend has now moved on, has a career, met a girl, got married, has two children, is now married 10 years and a VP of a large firm. The friend's dad just accepted his son as he found him and the boy has now become a man while the other kid continues to drift. Very sad.

Then we have the Dan Rather fiasco. This is another example of how when things go wrong -- kill the little guys and let the generals escape to the rear. The worst part of this thing was the conclusion that there is no evidence of political bias. That is so laughable that it borders on the bizarre. This is an example of how the East Coast liberals are so inbred that they can't see the truth. They really think that NPR, PBS, ABC, NBC, and CBS are not left wing propaganda machines. Rather was the architect of the attack on Bush and he was supported in that position all of the way to the top. If he wasn't who authorized a five year study of Bush trying to "get the goods" on him. That isn't bias? The networks are killing themselves just like the Democratic party and neither group has a clue as to what the problem is. They are blaming their failures on the Christian community. They should try values, morality, and their own stupidity.

Abbas is the new leader of the Palestinians -- so will anything change? I think not. I think this will be another period of regrouping by the extremists and then more violence in about 6 months. The objective is to destroy Israel and that has never changed.

Duty calls.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Zell Miller tells it all

This is a speech by Zell Miller that I think bears reading because it is very true and he makes some very compelling points. There is no doubt that the secularists in this country have captured the Judicial system and are legislating from the bench. The Judges have lost sight of their role and are inventing laws in order to fulfill their own left leaning agendas. I am not an especially religious person but then I do regard myself as religious in the sense that I believe in God and the Judeo-Christian morality that permeates our society. I think Senator Miller has grasped the fundamental issue that faces us today. More importantly he has a message that I think most in the Democratic Party have missed and certainly the extreme left of the bench and the media see as a basic character flaw in the rest of the country. Nietzsche would feel right at home in the Democratic party of today.

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Zell Miller (D-GA) today delivered the following statement on the floor of the United States Senate addressing several social issues facing the country:
"The Old Testament prophet Amos was a sheep herder who lived back in the Judean hills, away from the larger cities of Bethlehem and Jerusalem. Compared to the intellectual urbanites like Isaiah and Jeremiah, he was just an unsophisticated country hick. But Amos had a unique grasp of political and social issues and his poetic literary skill was among the best of all the prophets. That familiar quote of Martin Luther King, Jr. about 'Justice will rush down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream' are Amos's words.

Amos was the first to propose the concept of a universal God and not just some tribal deity. He also wrote that God demanded moral purity, not ritualism and sacrifices. This blunt speaking moral conscience of his time warns in Chapter 8, verse 11 of The Book of Amos, as if he were speaking to us today: That
'the days will come, sayeth the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land. Not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the word of the Lord. 'And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east. They shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it.'

A famine in the land'. Has anyone more accurately described the situation we face in America today? A famine of hearing the words of the Lord. But some will say, Amos was just an Old Testament prophet - a minor one at that - who lived 700 years before Christ. That is true, so how about one of the most influential historians of modern times?

Arnold Toynbee who wrote the acclaimed 12 volume “A Study of History” ,once declared, 'Of the 22 civilizations that have appeared in history, 19 them collapsed when they reached the moral state America is in today.' Toynbee died in 1975, before seeing the worst that was yet to come. Yes, Arnold Toynbee saw the famine. The famine of hearing the words of the Lord -- whether it is removing a display of the Ten Commandments from a Courthouse or the Nativity Scene from a city square. Whether it is eliminating prayer in schools or eliminating 'under God' in the Pledge of Allegiance. Whether it is making a mockery of the sacred institution of marriage between a man and woman or, yes, telecasting around the world made-in-the-USA filth masquerading as entertainment. The Culture of Far Left America was displayed in a startling way during the Super Bowl's now infamous half-time show. A show brought to us courtesy of Value-Les Moonves and the pagan temple of Viacom-Babylon.

"I asked the question yesterday, how many of you have ever run over a skunk with your car? I have many times and I can tell you, the stink stays around for a long time. You can take the car through a car wash and it's still there. So the scent of this event will long linger in the nostrils of America

I'm not talking just about an exposed mammary gland with a pull-tab attached to it. Really no one should have been too surprised at that. Wouldn't one expect a bumping, humping, trashy routine entitled 'I'm going to get you naked' to end that way. "Does any responsible adult ever listen to the words of this rap-crap? I'd quote you some of it, but the Sergeant of Arms would throw me out of here, as well he should. And then there was that prancing, dancing, strutting, rutting guy evidently suffering from jock itch because he kept yelling and grabbing his crotch. But then, maybe there's a crotch grabbing culture I'm unaware of. "But as bad as all this was, the thing that yanked my chain the hardest was seeing that ignoramus with his pointed head stuck up through a hole he had cut in the flag of the United States of America, screaming about having 'a bottle of scotch and watching lots of crotch.' Think about that. "This is the same flag that we pledge allegiance to. This is the flag that is draped over coffins of dead young uniformed warriors killed while protecting Kid Crock's bony butt. He should be tarred and feathered, and ridden out of this country on a rail. Talk about a good reality show, there's one for you.

The desire and will of this Congress to meaningfully do anything about any of these so-called social issues is non existent and embarrassingly disgraceful. The American people are waiting and growing impatient with us. They want something done. I am pleased to be a co-sponsor of S.J. Res. 26 along with Senator Allard and others, proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States relating to marriage. And S.1558, the Liberties Restoration Act, which declares religious liberty rights in several ways, including the Pledge of Allegiance and the display of the Ten Commandments. And today I join Senator Shelby and others with the Constitution Restoration Act of 2004 that limits the jurisdiction of federal courts in certain ways. "In doing so, I stand shoulder to shoulder not only with my Senate co-sponsors and Chief Justice Roy Moore of Alabama but, more importantly, with our Founding Fathers in the conception of religious liberty and the terribly wrong direction our modern judiciary has taken us in.

Everyone today seems to think that the U.S. Constitution expressly provides for separation of church and state. Ask any ten people if that's not so. And I'll bet you most of them will say 'Well, sure.' And some will point out, 'it's in the First Amendment.' Wrong! Read it! It says, 'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.' Where is the word 'separate'? Where are the words 'church' or 'state.' "They are not there. Never have been there. Never intended to be. Read the Congressional Records during that four-month period in 1789 when the amendment was being framed in Congress. Clearly their intent was to prohibit a single denomination in exclusion of all others, whether it was Anglican or Catholic or some other. "I highly recommend a great book entitled Original Intent by David Barton. It really gets into how the actual members of Congress, who drafted the First Amendment, expected basic Biblical principles and values to be present throughout public life and society, not separate from it. "It was Alexander Hamilton who pointed out that 'judges should be bound down by strict rules and precedents, which serve to define and point out their duty.' Bound down! That is exactly what is needed to be done. There was not a single precedent cited when school prayer was struck down in 1962. These judges who legislate instead of adjudicate, do it without being responsible to one single solitary voter for their actions. Among the signers of the Declaration of Independence was a brilliant young physician from Pennsylvania named Benjamin Rush. When Rush was elected to that First Continental Congress, his close friend Benjamin Franklin told him 'We need you. we have a great task before us assigned to us by Providence.' Today, 228 years later there is still a great task before us assigned to us by Providence. Our Founding Fathers did not shirk their duty and we can do no less By the way, Benjamin Rush was once asked a question that has long interested this Senator from Georgia in particular. Dr. Rush was asked, are you a democrat or an aristocrat? And the good doctor answered, 'I am neither '. 'I am a Christocrat. I believe He, alone, who created and redeemed man is qualified to govern him.' That reply of Benjamin Rush is just as true today in the year of our Lord 2004 as it was in the year of our Lord 1776."So, if I am asked why - with all the pressing problems this nation faces today - why am I pushing these social issues and taking the Senate's valuable time? I will answer: Because, it is of the highest importance. Yes, there's a deficit to be concerned about in this country, a deficit of decency. So, as the sand empties through my hourglass at warp speed - and with my time running out in this Senate and on this earth, I feel compelled to speak out. For I truly believe that at times like this, silence is not golden. It is yellow!

Senator Miller has stated on several occasions that he has been a life long Democrat and that he still is but the Democratic Party has moved away from him. After reading this speech it is easy to see what he means by that because this speech will set him apart from all of the media and 90% of the Democratic Party. An examination of the speeches by Presidents Roosevelt and Truman will aptly demonstrate that what Senator Miller says is absolutely true. There is a danger here and that is that the Democratic Party will fragment into the extreme (Marxist) socialistic left and a more moderate minority. While I view myself as a conservative I am a moderate one and don't think extremes in either party or good for the country and killing off the Democratic Party would be a national tragedy. However, it is the media and the liberal left that needs to heed Senator Miller not the people who make up the moderate center.