Friday, June 29, 2007

Quote of the Day: Chief Justice John Roberts

"The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race." - Chief Justice John Roberts

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Doggett votes against Freedom of Speech

In a House vote where our First Amendment rights were on the line, Rep Lloyd Doggett votes for the "Fairness Doctrine" and against Freedom of Speech. The House voted overwhelmingly Thursday ( June 28, 2007 )to prohibit the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) from using taxpayer dollars to impose the Fairness Doctrine on broadcasters, but Doggett sided with 114 others, all Democrats, to support the "Fairness Doctrine" assault on free speech and an indepedent media.

Bush would not support such a change in policy, but an FCC appointed by Hillary Clinton or another Democrat would, as many major Democrats - including Senators like Durbin, Reid, and Feinstein, and Speaker Pelosi - have come out to support the so-called "Fairness Doctrine".

Fairness Doctrine = Censorship

We The People Won

The amnesty for illegals bill is dead thanks to you, and you over there, and the legal immigrant here up front, and the union member over there, and the Barry Goldwater Republican in the middle and the Ronald Reagan Republican over here on the right, and the Libertarian over there on the fringe, and the conservative Democrats there in the corner, and the talk show hosts (Savage, etc. - you little devils, you), and the grassroots lobby groups like Roy Beck's NumbersUSA (my personal favorite) and Steve Elliot's Grassfire, and yes, of course, you Senator Sessions, and Senator Hutchinson, and Senator Cornyn, and Senator Burr (I list you because yours was the only office that when I called after business hours I found I could leave a voice message) and the 49 other Senators that voted "NO" to amnesty today. And let's not forget to mention our indebtedness to Al Gore who, of course, invented the Internet that made it so easy for our Senators to hear from We the People.

No, Mr. President, no thanks to you, or McCain, or Kennedy, or Kyl, or Lott, or Martinez, or Clinton, or Graham, or the other 39 Senators who counted themselves losers today by voting against the will of two-thirds, and more, of the American people -- you all are out of touch with political reality.

I'm tired. I have that feeling you get when you reach the top of the mountain -- that moment of exhilaration followed by the realization of real fatigue. It should not have taking so much effort to convince our elected officials that two-thirds, and more, of Americans did not want those officials to disregard the rule of law by granting amnesty to 12-20 million people who came here illegally.

Senator John Cornyn is a hero who not only voted right but stood up and exposed the flaws in the bill on the Senate floor. His bottom line: "So once again, I fear that like in 1986, we are promising something to the American people that we cannot deliver."

Senator Tom Coburn on the Senate floor exposes the immigration sham for what it is:
“We have failed to instill the confidence in the American people in the Congress that we are about doing what is in the best long-term interest of our country. It’s not about being against immigration or for immigration. It’s not about being against or for an ethnic group. It’s not about liberal or conservative. It’s about the worry the American people have about the concept we call liberty…There’s worry that the thing that gives us liberty, which is the rule of law, is somehow being tinkered with in a way that undermines our confidence and security in what the American Dream is all about.” - Senator Tom Coburn
American citizens and taxpayers opposed the Senate immigration bill strongly because it was a costly, unworkable, unimplementable fraud that was designed to fail - it pretended to uphold border security and enforcing the law, but it actually undermined them completely with the Z visa amnesty/legalization program and its many 'gotchas'. The immigration debate will go on, but the open borders elites can no longer shut the American people out of the process. Today was a victory for grassroots democracy and 'people power' activism.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Ronnie Earle's DeLay Indictments Dismissed!

Phony Ronnie Earle indicment is dismissed (although a 'creative' charge of money laundering still stands), and Tom DeLay crows:

"The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals today ruled that I was wrongfully indicted by Ronnie Earle, the Mike Nifong of Texas, on laws that didn’t even exist. The court affirmed the decision to throw out the conspiracy indictments because they were based on laws that weren’t even on the books. What Ronnie Earle accomplished is no rookie error – it’s a political attack using our legal system as the primary weapon.

“Ronnie Earle’s politically motivated indictments cost Republicans the leader of their choice, and my family hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees. The damage he has done to my family and my career cannot be rectified, but the courts have recognized a significant portion of the injustice and ruled accordingly. For nearly two years I have been willing and eager to go to trial and with this ruling, we are thankfully closer to that day.

“Ronnie Earle may think this case is about campaign finance, but in the end it will be a case about his own prosecutorial misconduct.”

If Nifong can be disbarred for abusive prosecution .... why not Ronnie Earle?

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


By Bob Ward

There’s been a lot of buzz lately about reviving the so-called Fairness Doctrine for broadcasting in response to conservative domination of talk radio.

Sen. Trent Lott, a Mississippi Republican, complains that, “Talk radio is running America and we have to deal with that problem." Talk radio allows the people of America – those unrepresented by a trade association, a lobbying firm, an advocacy group, a labor union or other organization – to make their opinions public and to generate support for their positions.

We are entitled to ask why Trent Lott considers that “a problem” and who does he think should be running America if not the people. We would also be interested in knowing what he means by dealing with this so-called problem. Does he mean that lawmakers have to learn to live with and take into account talk radio, or does he mean to eliminate the “problem?”

Whatever Lott has in mind, there are politicians who would restore the Fairness Doctrine – repealed during the presidency of Ronald Reagan. If they succeed, it would put and end to talk radio. Radio stations would be subject to endless complaints and nitpicking from interests who feel their position has not been given fair treatment. This would allow the politicians to do whatever the special interests pay them to do without having to listen to a lot of guff from the riff-raff.

The Federal government must regulate those aspects of broadcasting that must be regulated for broadcasting to function. If two radio stations broadcast on the same frequency, neither would be heard and understood by listeners. Clearly, frequencies must be assigned and the assignment must be enforceable and that means government has to do it.

But this is strictly a technical issue and has nothing to do with the contents of a broadcast. Federal authority to regulate content rests on a lie – the claim that the “airwaves” belong to the public – “public” being a euphemism for the government. This is a weak peg on which to hang so much government power. And it raises two questions: 1. What is an “airwave,” and 2. How did the government come to “own” them.

The first is easy. There is no such thing as an “airwave.” What you hear when you turn on your radio is a signal generated by privately owned electronic equipment. It travels through a vacuum as well as through air. “Airwave” is a fiction. That signal is a form of radiant energy, like light. And, like light, nobody owns it.

The assertion that the “airwaves belong to the public” is a lame fiction and no basis for disregarding the First amendment to the Constitution.

Federal power over who can say what on the radio has also been based on language in the1927 statute conferring on the Federal communication Commission authority to license broadcasters to operate on specific frequencies. The rationale is that because the licensee is granted the exclusive right to use a particular frequency, the law requires that the station operate in the public interest.

Even this is an overreach. Who determines what programming is or isn’t in the public interest. How about the public? If we compare the public’s response to Rush Limbaugh to the public response to Air America it’s pretty clear where the public interest lies.

Vaporous phrases like “the public interest” and fictional entities like “airwaves” simply cannot stand against the hard language of the First Amendment. What part of “Congress shall make no law . . .” do these gentry not understand.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Omissions in published letter

I am pleased that the Statesman published my letter on 6/24.
However, the following two items were cut from the letter:

How does Congress propose to completely seal the border?
How will Congress insure that workers do not overstay their permits?

Perhaps making points in the form of questions is not a good idea. Perhaps there are too many points in the letter. Perhaps these are sensitive issues, each better dealt with in separate letters.

So, let's write some more letters -- this bill is an abomination.

BTW, the word count of the original was exactly 150, so going over the allowed lenghth cannot be the reason.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Letter to Editor on Immigration Bill

Your editorial (6/18/07) presented good points but this immigration legislation troubles me.

I am not anti-immigrant. My wife immigrated legally after health and background checks, learned English and passed the citizenship test. She is fully assimilated.

What troubles me, however, is a Congress presuming to tackle anything “comprehensive.” Fixing immigration requires a well thought-out, individual solution for each factor, not a mish-mash of political deals.

Border security is not just to stem the unregulated flow of immigrants but, even more importantly, to guard against imported diseases, crime and terrorism. How does Congress propose to completely seal the border?

Does Congress realize that a guest-worker program with tamper-proof identification and job matching could only work if the applicants have access to employment offices, staffed by US officials and preferably in their home country to enable mandatory health and background checks?

How will Congress insure that workers do not overstay their permits?

Carl E. Schlaepfer

Education News

Education News
(Connie Sadowski)

Texas Commissioner of Education Shirley J. Neeley announced today that she is resigning as head of the Texas Education Agency effective July 1.

Neeley was appointed to the top public education post in January of 2004 by Gov. Rick Perry. Commissioner Neeley said she motivated her staff to work towards becoming a more "kinder, gentler, more customer friendly state agency"--something, said Connie Sadowski with the Austin CEO Foundation we all should strive for to benefit the children of Texas. We wish her well in all she endeavors."

To view the PERSONAL LETTER TO CO-WORKERS AND FRIENDS as well as the entire Texas Education Agency press release as well as other education news, please go to
There you may also subscribe to the free Edu News

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Lowriders for Doggett

Note the flag on the pro- Lloyd Doggett car - where does his allegiance lay?

UPDATE: Maybe this explains it further:

Texas Lege opportunists put on notice

We dodged a bullet when the extraordinary effort to oust Speaker Craddick failed; it was was a coup by the "opportunist" or RINO wing of the Republican House membership. An Insider says Republicans will gain Texas House seats against both the Democrats and the "opportunist" party of Democrat/RINOs.

Who are those 18 RINOs/opportunists who wear the "R" label? And who are those vulnerable 22 Democrats that can be taken out? Stay tuned - as we gear up for 2008, we'll review the Texas House battlefield.javascript:void(0)

Quote of the Day: "An important moment"

Jed Babbin lays down the gauntlet and issues a clarion call - "Kill (their immigration) Bill":

"We are at an important moment in the history of our nation, one that will be analyzed for hundreds of years to come. It is a moment when conservatives can falter, worn out from the fight, or reach down into our collective character and find the strength to keep up the fight now and in months and years to come." - Jed Babbin

I believe the real conservatives in this country are becoming more united than we have been in a long time, as we find ourselves all in this fight against the largest illegal immigrant amnesty ever.

We are now fighting on common and secure ground of rock-solid conservative principles:
  • We are defending American sovereignty and our right to decide who crosses our borders
  • We are fighting to defend law and order, both in the immigration laws itself and in general
  • We are fighting to stop the pillaging of taxpayers, the expansion of our welfare state, the undermining of working Americans, and the degradation and corruption of our Government
  • We are fighting to defend American heritage, culture, language and unity against the multi-culturalist ideologues and the enemies of American exceptionalism

The one thing we conservative need now is ... a victory. If it is at the hands of the grassroots,
even as a negative 'victory' that stops a bad idea for a season, how sweet that will be. For it will confirm another key conservative principle - the strength of a free nation is in its citizens, not its leaders. It's up to us to make our own corrupted weak leaders do the right thing.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Immigration Roundup

"The immigration system is not "broken," the only thing that is broken is the will to uphold the law. Your administration's lack of will to meet its obligations regarding immigration enforcement is disrespectful toward all American citizens and legal immigrants." - Costa Mesa City council, letter to the President on immigration.

The vampire bill is back. Low support for Senate immigration bill. The Senate immigration bill is opposed by a more than 2 to 1 margin (Rasmussen poll): Favor 23%, Oppose 50%. "Sixty-nine percent (69%) of voters would favor an approach that focuses “exclusively on securing the border and reducing illegal immigration.” Support for the enforcement only approach comes from 84% of Republicans, 55% of Democrats, and 69% of those not affiliated with either major party."
And why not? Working Americans are not stupid about immigration. Not to mention the politics of Blacks vs immigrants.

Conservative bloggers revolt over immigration - Gee, no kidding. Bush flunkies bashing the base doesn't help any. Ingraham smokes Tony Snow on borders. And Bush's emotions are no way to lead on immigration policy. Bush at all-time low in approval on heels of his support for 'comprehensive' immigration amnesty. Now we see Operation Payback underway. Heather MacDonald on the GOP's Hispanic Delusion. Gerson recites the pro-amensty talking points, and talks down to the right.

NRO: Harry Reid's plan to pass the immigration bill. Bush's $4 billion border bribe tries to buy votes. The key vote is cloture and Sentor Lott pre-announces the plan to sellout America by stripping amendments in conference. The process is an outrage and the product is a monstrosity. Good news: It can be stopped. Bush's clout is 'all used up' on immigration. Public pressure has to stop the Senators from getting pulled by the insider-lobbying. Latest update.

20 Loopholes in the Senate immigration bill. Z Visa: Z IS FOR ZERO. ZERO ENFORCEMENT. ZERO DEPORTATIONS.

Krauthammer talks sense - why not do the one thing we all agree on? Secure the border first. Micheal Steele says it too; this man should have been our RNC chair, instead of Martinez! Immigration bill is a fraud.
Too Much Federal Meddling in verification. Verification that can work.
The sham of Jobs Americans won't do.

What the White House said about the fence - last October. Bush's Top 5 Reason for doing immigration reform. Malkin: Clear the backlogs first and Rules of engagement on why we don't deport criminal aliens.

What to do? You can call Senators: 1-800-882-2005. (Spanish number) 1-800-417-7666. (English number),1-866-340-9281, or 1-202-224-3121, send a fax or send Congressional emails.

UPDATE: Grassroots activism is having an effect - "The feedback we are getting from you about your phone calls and the intelligence your NumbersUSA Capitol Hill Team is picking up suggests that Senate Republican Whip Trent Lott (R-Miss.) is not nearly as solid in passing the Bush/Kennedy amnesty tonight as he was last night."

UPDATE 2: The Cramdown list. Senator Reid has a pre-packaged deal of 24 amendments for the second sham-nesty attempt. Here are some of the amendments:

_An amendment by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, to mandate that all illegal immigrants return home within two years to gain lawful status. The bill only requires those seeking green cards to do so.

_A proposal by Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., to increase the number of points under a new merit-based green card allocation system that could be awarded for being related to a U.S. citizen or green card holder.

_An amendment by Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., to condition any legal status for unlawful immigrants on the measure's border security and workplace enforcement measures. The bill would instead allow such immigrants to get probationary legal status while those so-called "triggers" were being met.

_A proposal by Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., to increase penalties on employers who repeatedly hire illegal immigrants.

_An amendment by Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, to replace the employment verification system with a less-burdensome alternative.

_An amendment by Montana's Democratic Sens. Max Baucus and Jon Tester, who opposed moving to a final vote on the bill, to remove requirements that workers present "REAL ID" driver's license to prospective employers.

_An amendment by Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., to let law enforcement agencies share information about people's immigration status.

_An amendment by Sen. Bernard Sanders of Vermont, the sole Independent to oppose the June 7 test vote, to bar companies that have had mass layoffs from hiring foreign high-tech workers.

No Legal Basis for One China

The US government finally admits that an important communiqué used by Chinese to claim Taiwan is part of China has not legal standing.

This could mean that a legal basis for the US's 'One China Policy' could also be on the chopping block as it too has been pieced together from similar communiqués.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

National English


Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) has introduced the Senate version (S.1335) of Rep. Peter King's National Language Act. What makes these bills deserving of your support is that they will not only make English our official language, they will also eliminate bilingual voting requirements. That is important because they allow millions of illegal aliens and non-citizens to vote, which is not just against the law, it also mocks our Constitution while giving people who should not be here an opportunity to cancel out your vote.

The right to vote is the cornerstone of all our liberties. It is how we, the people maintain control over the government and the people we elect to serve us. Giving away this precious liberty to criminals is insane.

We know there is massive voter fraud, but this bill will end much of it and restore integrity to the ballot box.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

China Complains of Purported American Invaders

Hundreds, perhaps thousand, of uninvited guests (shall we call them illegal immigrants?) from the US have stowed away in agricultural containers shipped to China. Will the Chinese deport them, grant them amnesty, or perhaps execute them?

Details to follow.

(I continue, 27 hrs later)

Who are these immigrants?.............They're ANTS!

Yes, those critters portrayed in
Antz, the 1998 animated film by DreamWorks SKG.

Antz re-contextualizes the 'search for individuality' theme into, of all places, an ant colony, where its members' societal roles are rigidly determined at birth, wrote one reviewer.

Apparently Z, who was bemoaning his feelings of insignificance as a middle-child in a 'family of five million', when he first appeared on the big screen, has fallen for all the hype about Chinatopia (the fabled land of great expectations) and has, along with a substantial following, hitched a ride in some crates of pistachios destined for China.

What happened when some of the crates were unloaded is a bit disturbing (from Z's perspective). It seems that the Chinese did not find the presence of Z and his fellow ants a good omen. They declared the entire shipment of
pistachios ruined by the presence of the invaders. It essence they declared the presence of ants in the pistachio shipment a grave violation of China's strict food safety standards.

I'm afraid to report that Z could likely be dead, along with many if not all of his fellow travelers. There was no place to hide from the Chinese border control officials. Sanitary workers donning face masks, reportedly did the deed.
They destroyed part of the offloaded crates and deported the unloaded ones back to the US, according to this report on the NASDAQ web site:

China Central Television said the ants found in the pistachio shipment could "cause a serious threat to trees and to the ecological environment." Part of the batch, which arrived by ship to the port of Zhongshan, will be destroyed and the rest will be returned, CCTV said, without giving any other details.

Some reports indicate that the ants may in fact be termites, which would mean, thank heaven, that it was not Z at all, but the enemy termites, that bit the dust.

The truth of the matter is that the Chinese, smarting from accusations of exporting to the West poison drug and food products for pets and people are itching to take a retalitory strike against the trade partners levying the accusations, if for no other reason than to save face (one of the sacred rituals of East Asia). "Whatever the motives are for this, if it's real, we want to know about it," said David Acheson, assistant commissioner for food protection at the FDA."

But WAIT. I think Z got his destination all mixed up. Chinatopia is a Chinese restaurant in South Florida.


Related Stories

Chinese import crackdown follows nut seizure

Pistachios imported from US infested with ants

Colgate Warns of Fake Toothpaste in U.S.

China on offensive, rejects U.S. products for failing sanitary standards

FDA Recalls Toxic Toothpaste in Four U.S.

Tainted import controversy hits close to home


By Bob Ward

Republican senators managed to head off the political pantomime Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) called a “no confidence vote" aimed at Attorney-General Alberto Gonzales. The 53-38 tally was seven votes short of the 60 needed to pass the non-binding resolution.

Schumer had boasted that if the vote went against Gonzales he would no longer hold the office. This was empty bluster since the attorney-general does not work for the Senate and it is irrelevant whether the senators have “confidence” in him or not. The whole stunt was an amateurish attempt to conjure the image of a “no confidence” vote that occurs in European governments operating under a parliamentary system. In the U.S., the attorney-general is chosen by the President – with Senate confirmation – and serves until the President wants to replace him.

And the same goes for the U.S. attorneys whose firings by the President provided the pretext for the ongoing harassment of the Attorney-General. It’s true that Gonzales invited this treatment by trying to cover up his part in the firings and conceding the firings were “mishandled.” instead of standing up to the Democratic inquisitors and telling them flat out, “The President has the authority to replace the attorneys and he did, end of story, have a nice day.”

In fact, Gonzales, and other Republicans, should resist the impression, created by the media and encouraged by Gonzalez’ wimpiness, that the firing of the U.S. attorneys was “bungled” or “botched.” The attorneys are gone so obviously their firing was successful.

Republicans should also resist the pretensions of the Senate Democrats that they have some authority over these matters. They do not and their intrusion comes close to violating the principle of the separation of powers. They advance no public interest and are aimed only at creating the false impression the Bush administration acted illegally.

There is an upside to the Democrats’ antics. While they’re screwing around with pointless political gestures, they aren’t doing even more serious damage to the country by legislating.


Senators to Revive Immigration Bill, trying to cut behind-doors deals to bring this bill back on the Senate floor.
Inside dope on it.


"We met this evening with several of the senators involved in the immigration bill negotiations,” Reid and McConnell said in a joint statement. “Based on that discussion, the immigration bill will return to the Senate floor after completion of the energy bill."

July 4, will have special meaning this year ... we will know by then whether the next generation will have an American Republic worthy of the name.

Time to tell 'em what we think. The Senate numbers are 202-224-3121.

GOP Base Revolts on Immigration II

President Bush loses base over immigration falling from base support in the 80% plus range until recently and now plummeting to around 40%:

When asked about various areas of the illegal immigration issue, 97% of respondents said that it was “very important” to focus on “border security and reducing the number of people who enter the country illegally.” That number drops to 43% on the topic of “resolving the legal status of the illegal aliens already in the U.S.” Only 18% felt it was “very important” to set up a temporary worker program. ... When asked if they supported the “illegal immigration legislation that was being debated in the U.S. Senate,” 93% of respondents said “no.”

Texas Monthly's Biased Top 10

Gina Parker exposes the liberal bias in the Texas Monthly Top Ten Best and Worst Legislators Lists. It's a "Top 10" from the viewpoint of some Liberal Democrat media-types in Austin.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Early start on the race to the White House

The essay below is an expanded version of the Taipei Times editorial of the same name. I have posted it to The Travis Monitor with permission of the author, Li Thian-hok. Perhaps it is a nice distraction from the "Amnesty for Illegals" debacle that currently has us all in a funk.

DISCLAIMER: Although conservative Republicans, including this conservative Republican, will not agree with the author's analysis of the US Presidential race (he uses a few Democratic talking points) and on the total absence of the mention of the "Amnesty for Illegals" issue that is so opposed by the American people and is primarily why the President's polls numbers are so low, the bottom third of the essay is what I wanted to bring to the attention of the Travis Monitor blog community.

I apologize in advance for the length but I had to post it in toto because you can't find it posted anywhere else and the author would have it no other way.

Early start on the race to the White House
By Li Thian-hok

The ongoing US race for the White House is different in some respects. A new political calendar means earlier primaries. Nevada's caucus is now scheduled just after the Iowa caucus and ahead of the New Hampshire primary. Many other states are planning to move their primary forward so that they have a larger impact on the choice of the candidate. As of mid-March, eight states have moved their primary elections to February 5, 2008, including California and New Jersey. Fourteen other states, including Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania and Texas are proposing to move their primaries to the same date. So some fifty percent of the delegates could be chosen by February 5, narrowing the field down to a few strong candidates.

There are large numbers of declared or assumed candidates in both parties. Their main efforts now are fund raising and assembling a competent campaign staff. Because of the large amount of money required to run a serious campaign, some fringe candidates are expected to withdraw early. Others may stumble by saying the wrong thing or failing to ignite support among the voters.

According to an average of seven national polls in February of likely Republican voters, former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani led with 40%, followed by 22% for Arizona Senator John McCain, 11% for former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and 7% for former Governor of Massachusetts Mitt Romney. Gingrich is taking a wait and see stance and won't be a factor unless the front-runners falter. Romney is capable but his Mormon religion could be a handicap. Giuliani has a good record as prosecutor and Mayor of New York, and performed well in the aftermath of 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center but his three marriages and business dealings could be questioned. McCain is still regarded as the front-runner by some pundits because of his campaign team and his experience in Congress and the military, but his strong support for the Iraq war goes against voter sentiment. At 70, his age could also be a negative factor.

Other Republican hopefuls include Senators Sam Brownback of Kansas and Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, Representatives Tom Tancredo of Colorado and Duncan Hunter of California, former Governor of Wisconsin Tommy Thompson, and former Governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee.

There are also many contenders on the Democratic side. Hillary Clinton, former first lady and now Senator from New York, has a substantial lead over her Democratic rivals. According to a recent Washington Post/ABC News survey, 36% of Democrats support Clinton, 24% back Illinois Senator Barack Obama, 14% support the party's 2000 nominee Al Gore and 12% endorse John Edwards, the party's vice presidential nominee in 2004. Clinton's advantages include name recognition, fund raising prowess and an image of intelligence. Possible liabilities are the perception that she is polarizing, may not be electable due in part to "Clinton fatigue," her relatively poor oratory skill, and her consistent support of the Iraq war, although she has been adjusting her stand on how and when US forces may be withdrawn from Iraq.

Obama is an attractive fresh face. He is articulate and comes across as someone genuinely committed to doing good for the country. The son of a Kenyan father and a Caucasian mother, he was raised in Hawaii and Indonesia and went to Columbia University and Harvard Law School. Obama is an excellent speaker and author of two best-selling books. He could siphon off considerable support of Black Americans from the Clinton camp. He also objected to the Iraq war when it was politically risky to do so. His demonstrated fund raising ability also makes him a credible contender. The concern is his lack of experience. He has been in the US Senate for only two years.

Edwards has cultivated good relations with the workers unions across the country. He is deeply committed to eliminating poverty and he has traveled extensively overseas since 2004 to broaden his horizons. He is talented and is already developing policy proposals such as a comprehensive healthcare coverage plan. He could be a viable contender, depending on the progress of the Iraq war, the state of the economy and other unforeseen developments. On March 22, John Edwards announced in a press conference that his wife Elizabeth's cancer has returned, but the campaign will continue.

The second tier Democratic candidates could include New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, Al Gore, Senators Joe Biden of Delaware and Christopher Dodd of Connecticut, and Representative Dennis Kucinich of Ohio.

The polls cited above may not be reliable since at this early stage the results reflect primarily name recognition. As the long campaign progresses, voter preferences will undoubtedly shift. A new poll conducted by the Los Angeles Times from February 13 to 26 of 313 members of the Democratic National Committee and 133 members of the Republican National Committee shows quite different results, as follows. Among Democrats: Senator Hillary Clinton 20%, former Senator John Edwards 15%, Senator Barack Obama 11%, former Vice President Al Gore 10%, Governor Bill Richardson 9%, other candidates 6%, don't know/haven't heard 29%. Among Republicans: former Governor Mitt Romney 20%, former Mayor Rudy Giuliani 14%, Senator John McCain 10%, former Speaker Newt Gingrich 8%, other candidates 12%, don't know/haven't heard 36%. Since the DNC and RNC members are delegates to the national nominating conventions, key organizers and opinion leaders, this insider poll provides a possibly more accurate reading of each candidate's party support.

Because of the Iraq fiasco and numerous scandals under the Bush administration, such as the Katrina relief failure, the perjury conviction of Vice President Dick Cheney's former chief of staff Scooter Libby, the callous treatment of wounded soldiers at Walter Reed Medical Center, and the newly emerging controversy about the politically motivated firing of eight US attorneys by the Justice Department, there is a desire among independent voters to kick the rascals out. This inclination for change will favor the Democratic nominee.

This is not good news for Taiwan since Democrats tend to see China as an economic challenge rather than as a military threat. However, Taiwan's strategic value as an example of democracy for the People's Republic of China (PRC) and as a bastion against the PRC's expansionist ambitions will dictate US policy no matter which party wins the White House. The next US President will undoubtedly inherit the thorny problems of the Middle East and will have little time or energy to pay attention to developments in Taiwan.

Concerns about Taiwan's future have prompted many Taiwanese Americans (TA) and TA organizations to lobby the US government to ensure Taiwan's survival as a democratic state free from China's control. Such efforts have concentrated on the US Congress. In reality, foreign policy is initiated and implemented by the President with support from the National Security Council, the State Department, the Pentagon and other executive agencies. The congressional role to advise and consent is secondary. Whoever wins the race to the White House will have the greatest say about US policy towards Taiwan, China and East Asia in general. So it is important to pay attention to the ongoing presidential election, even though the first primary is ten months away.

Taiwanese Americans need to monitor the evolving Presidential race and try to approach the campaign staffs of the major contenders in each party even though policy formulation is not the immediate concern of the candidates. Once the candidates are nominated by their party convention, it would be much more difficult to approach their foreign policy aides. The objective is to provide useful information regarding US policy towards Taiwan, China and East Asia, from the perspective of American citizens interested in advancing US interest in the Western Pacific region. Such efforts could conceivably influence the drafting of party platforms in the summer of 2008. Another goal is to help to prevent the emergence of policy positions which are detrimental to the interest of both the US and Taiwan such as John Kerry's advocacy of One Country Two Systems for Taiwan's future in 2004.

Taiwan will have a new President in May 2008. The new administration will need to maintain solid relations with the Bush administration while keeping a watchful eye on the US presidential election, the outcome of which will be known in November 2008 and the new President inaugurated in January 2009. The distraction of the protracted presidential race in the US means that Taiwan should be vigilant in bolstering its national defense and economic security in order to safeguard the nation's hard-won freedom.

Copyright 4/14/07 by Li Thian-hok, All Rights Reserved

Quote of the Day

"It cannot at this time be too often repeated; line upon line; precept upon precept; until it comes into the currency of a proverb, to innovate is not to reform.

The...complained of everything; they refused to reform anything; and they left nothing, no, nothing at all unchanged. The consequences are before us,—not in remote history; not in future prognostication: they are about us; they are upon us. They shake the public security; they menace private enjoyment. They dwarf the growth of the young; they break the quiet of the old. If we travel, they stop our way. They infest us in town; they pursue us to the country. Our business is interrupted; our repose is troubled; our pleasures are saddened; our very studies are poisoned and perverted, and knowledge is rendered worse than ignorance, by the enormous evils of this dreadful innovation."
- Edmund Burke

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Incompetent Democratic Congress

It's a good thing this Democrat Congress is so incompetent, otherwise they could really do some damage. Reid blunders on from one bad-bill farce to another. 6 months into a new majority and their 'accomplishments' are a list of acts of grandstanding. Maybe that's why the Democratic Congress' ratings are abysmal. Approve: 27 percent. Disapprove: 65 percent. Harry Reid's at 19%.

There is only one thing the Democrats in Congress are getting right: Corrupt and wasteful spending that makes the prior GOP era of earmark spending seem tame. From Rich Galen:
The Democrats -- elected because they promised to clean up the system -- have struck that rule and decided that earmarks and earmarkers would not be make public during debate where they might be struck by a vote of other members of the House, or the earmarker might just decide that the water slide isn't worth the public ridicule which would accompany the debate.

So, they have decided to go to the good old days when folks like Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-Cellblock E) were riding high. Earmarks now will be dropped in during the conferences between House and Senate appropriators.

Why is this important? Because (a) conferences are very often closed to the press, and (b) the output of the conference -- a conference report -- is not amendable on the floor of either the House or the Senate.

Caught with hands in the jar, they attempt to relabel "earmarks" as "legislative directives" - "Just Forget the Word 'Earmark'", Pelosi says. The House GOP Minority Leader Boehner responds with a war on secret earmarks.

As the Democrats spend us into bankruptcy and turn DC into an acronym for "Democrat Corruption", they can only do one thing can could possible top this ignomy: Spread Defeat and Failure in war. I'm hoping they fail.

Travis Monitor Stops Immigration Bill!

Guess who visited our blog last Thursday? Weblog stats showed a visit to our humble blog from the U.S. Senate, which was followed later on Thursday by the collapse of the legislation in a failed Senate cloture vote. Coincidence? We'd like to think there was a connection.

No, our efforts did not stop the bill alone, Travis Monitor was but a drop in an

ocean of citizen discontent that boiled over and hit the Senators considering this misguided bill. In many ways, the last few weeks show the power of new media and grassroots activism once again. No major media outlet publicized the bills flaws - they are still boosting amnesty.

Yet it's not over yet. President Bush is trying to revive the bill, ingoring the obvious colalteral political damage and the many flaws in the bill. The price of liberty continues to be eternal vigilance.

PS. From the grapevine: "I just got an email from the anti-immigration activist Roy Beck. He says that Mitch McConnell has yielded to GWB, and last Thursday’s “victory” was nothing of the sort. The sellout continues."

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Operation Payback

What we need to do now on immigration - Enforcement First: "The abandonment of the Kyl-Kennedy bill heeds the wishes of most Americans. It opens the way for a new approach: Enforcement first, amnesty last, and lower numbers of more highly skilled immigrants above all."

To make sure that the dragon of amnesty-for-illegals is really slain, here is what the conservative Republican base needs to do. We need ... OPERATION PAYBACK:
1. Defeat Lindsay Graham in the GOP primary.
2. Defeat Chuck Hagel in the GOP primary next year or force him to quit.
3. End John McCain’s presidential hopes.
4. Defeat all pro-amnesty Democrat Senators next year. They include:
- Biden, Durbin, Harkin, Kerry, Lautenberg, Levin, Reed.
5. Serve notice to all other ‘squishy’ GOP types that their misbehavior on immigration must end and we must have a united GOP behind the idea of “Enforcement First”.
6. Continue to pressure the White House to give up their Amnesty-Jihad. No rhetorical support for a White House that disses its own base, until it throws in the towel.

Austin, sanctuary city

The deadly consequences of bad illegal alien sanctuary policies are recounted here. Giving 'sanctuary' to criminal illegal aliens (they are the main beneficiaries of this policy) gets innocent people killed.

Heather MacDonald on the consequences. See also NRO:“in Los Angeles, 95 percent of all outstanding warrants for homicide (which total 1,200 to 1,500) target illegal aliens. Up to two-thirds of all fugitive felony warrants (17,000) are for illegal aliens. ... The Department of Homeland Security estimates that 15 percent to 20 percent of illegal aliens wouldn’t qualify for amnesty based on their criminal record ... A whopping 28 percent of Mexican-American males between the ages of 18 and 24 reported having been arrested since 1995, and 20 percent reported having been incarcerated — a rate twice that of other immigrant groups.”

Sanctuary leaves the local PD unable to deal properly with crime in our midst.

Mr President, build up that wall!

The Vampire of Senate immigration amnesty is dead, but the ghouls of bipartisan mis-leadership are trying to revive it: Talk of Resurrecting Immigration Bill Begins as Autopsy Goes On. But this nutty sentence - "The White House -- which regards immigration reform as key to reviving public support for President Bush" - so at odds with the reality that popular opposition derailed the bill, has my mind so boggled it made me fire off a discontented missive to

Dear Mr President,

The Senate immigration bill dies because people rejected it and the Senate was unwilling to push it through in the
face of such clear and adamant public disapproval. The Washington Post tells us that:
"The White House -- which regards immigration reform as key to reviving public support for President Bush"

Who is the retard who thinks this would happen? This idiot needs to be fired. And if the President himself thinks this, God help us!

Don't you get it? I am more than twice a voter and volunteer for Bush, in 1994, 1998, 2000 and 2004.

I OPPOSE AMNESTY/LEGALIZATION FOR ILLEGAL ALIENS. I oppose vigorously and strongly the Senate immigration bill. So does practically all of the Republican base. I don't know of a single grassroots activist or Republican stalwart who likes this bill, but I personally know hundreds who are vehemently and in some cases angrily opposed to this sellout of Republican law and order and national-security (= border security) principles.

So do the American voters, by a 2 to 1 margin, oppose this Senate bill. (See the Rasmussen poll, which asked directly about the Senate bill; it has only 23% support and majority opposition). They oppose the offense of amnesty (and you fool nobody by denying that's what it is) married to phony 'triggers' that won't work (and are designed to fail). The calls to the Senators were running 98% against the bill. Just ask the Senate staffers. The phony 'comprehensive' approach failed in 1986 and the American people reject foisting this failure on us again.

The more Bush pushes for this travesty of a bill, the more he loses popular support. The more we American citizens learn about it, the more upset and opposed we become. Good Amendments, like the Cornyn Amendment to deny legalization path to all criminals, and Coleman amendment to require local law enforcement involvement, were turned down by the pro-legalization forces. Can Bush defend that travesty? Can he defend letting people who have absconded from the law become citizens? Or allowing continue breakdown in enforcement by having local law enforcement not even notify the Federal authorities of illegal aliens in their custody?

We oppose this bad bill and the bad idea of amnesty/legalization not because we are uninformed, but because we are very much informed. We are not going to be fooled, we are not going to stop opposing this travesty, and we are not going away. Any continued attempt to push this bad, unpopular bill will only result in the destruction of President Bush's remaining support and credibility, and the destruction of the Republican party. Yes, it is that serious. It could be worse than Watergate. 25% of pro-amnesty/legalization Republican incumbents lost their seats in the last election.

Mr President, here is how to fix the situation: COME OUT IN FAVOR OF ENFORCEMENT FIRST. Acknowledge that you cannot get the bill you want now, but that you will redouble efforts to secure the border and enforce immigration law in the workplace. Acknowledge that you have failed to do these things for 6 years and that you are turning over a new leaf by letting the issue rest for this year in Congress and focus on ENFORCEMENT.

Meet with Senators Sessions, Coburn, DeMint, Vitter, Inhofe and Cornyn; let Rep Sensenbrenner, Rep Steve King, Rep Duncan Hunter and Rep Lamar Smith join them; and instead of talking, do some listening. Ask what they would have you do next, and follow their advice. They are the ones who are standing for the real conservative and Republican approach to these issues.

One last thing, Mr President: Build up that Wall! Build the border fence the whole 800 miles and make it really work.

Only then can you dig out from the hole that you have dug for yourself.

Brown v Austin PD

Armed suspect was shot and killed while being chased by Austin police, and now Austin Statesman reports he was shot in the back. An enlightening 16 pages of reader comments on the article. A bad enough situation becomes a powderkeg because of the racial aspect - white cop kills black suspect. City Council deos a collective "Ruh Roh" and they are treating the case "as a homocide".

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Letter to Editor on Editorial on Libby

Re: Editorial (6/6/07) on Libby.

Where is the evidence of an administration conspiracy to discredit Plame’s husband, Joe Wilson? He discredited himself before a Senate panel. His charge that CIA documents were falsified by the administration turned out to be lie. He offered the excuse that he may have been “confused” and may have "misspoken" to reporters.

Statements by Libby were also “memory lapses” and he should be punished for lying. However, the Libby trial should never have happened because there was no crime. The prosecutor, Patrick Fitzgerald, knew almost from the start that it was not Libby who revealed the name of the CIA “operative” Plame because Richard Armitage confessed to doing so.

Furthermore, this “outing” was not a crime because Plame was not protected by the Intelligence Identities Protection Act. Therefore, Armitage was not indicted but Fitzgerald continued wasting money on what became a perjury trap for Libby.

(150 words)

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

12 million Z visas, .5 million more illegals, 51 sellouts

I told you so. Immigration Bill Won't Work: "The Senate's immigration bill will only reduce illegal immigration by about 25 percent a year ... The bill's new guest-worker program could lead to at least 500,000 more illegal immigrants within a decade, said the report from the CBO." And that's not counting the 12 million illegal aliens who become legalized, and their families. So what's getting 'fixed', here, except for the cheap labor lobby's 'fix' for supply?

Meanwhile, 51 Senators vote to allow criminals to get amnesty, voting against the very reasonable Cornyn Amendment which tried to bar all illegal aliens with criminal backgrounds from getting access to the Z visa amnesty program.

The 51 sellouts were mostly Democrats, including all four Democrat Presidential contenders, and the usual RINO suspects: Akaka (D-HI), Bayh (D-IN), Biden (D-DE), Bingaman (D-NM), Boxer (D-CA), Brown (D-OH), Cantwell (D-WA), Cardin (D-MD), Carper (D-DE), Casey (D-PA), Clinton (D-NY), Craig (R-ID), Dodd (D-CT), Domenici (R-NM), Durbin (D-IL), Feingold (D-WI), Feinstein (D-CA), Graham (R-SC), Hagel (R-NE), Harkin (D-IA), Inouye (D-HI), Kennedy (D-MA), Kerry (D-MA), Klobuchar (D-MN), Kohl (D-WI), Kyl (R-AZ), Lautenberg (D-NJ), Leahy (D-VT), Levin (D-MI), Lieberman (ID-CT), Lincoln (D-AR), Lugar (R-IN), Martinez (R-FL), McCain (R-AZ), McCaskill (D-MO), Menendez (D-NJ), Mikulski (D-MD), Murray (D-WA), Obama (D-IL), Pryor (D-AR), Reed (D-RI), Reid (D-NV), Salazar (D-CO), Sanders (I-VT), Schumer (D-NY), Specter (R-PA), Stabenow (D-MI), Voinovich (R-OH), Webb (D-VA), Whitehouse (D-RI), Wyden (D-OR)

BTW, Romney Surges and McCain falls in latest GOP Presidential polls. Romney slammed the phony Z visa as amnesty while McCain defended it in the June 5 debate - connection? Meanwhile, Senators are shocked by the outrage, support for Bush on immigration crumbles and the bill itself is opposed by a margin of 2 to 1. Yet the Senatorial lemmings are marching off the cliff to pass a terrible bill that repeats the errors of the 1986 immigration amnesty. Most summer sequels are bad enough, but when the original was a disaster - look out!

God vs Rudy

Now we know what God thinks about Guliani's abortion position.

Hutchison and Cornyn on the Record on Amnesty

I commend to The Travis Monitor Blog community the following email I received from Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison on Tuesday, June 5, 2007 2:11 PM.

Dear Mr. ___________:

Knowing of your interest in the issue of immigration, I wanted to send you a copy of an opinion editorial that I wrote with Senator Cornyn three weeks ago about the immigration bill currently being considered by the U.S. Senate. The editorial appeared in newspapers throughout Texas.

Secure Borders and Immigration Reform Without Amnesty
by Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn
Published in Texas newspapers the week of May 21, 2007

As your U.S. Senators, we have been heavily involved in the Congressional debate on immigration reform for several years. We have taken a leadership role on this issue because we represent a state that uniquely benefits from the contributions of legal immigrants, but is also uniquely vulnerable to the dangers of illegal immigration. Throughout this process, our principles have been clear and consistent: We must secure our borders, and we cannot encourage illegal behavior through amnesty.

Last week, the Bush administration, along with a small group of Senators, announced a compromise immigration bill that would take a necessary first step in improving border security. We did not join in the announcement. While our efforts had a positive influence, we were not convinced the announced proposal guarantees repair of our current broken system. We are particularly concerned that we may be repeating the mistakes of the failed 1986 national amnesty.

As of late Friday, the actual text of the “grand compromise” had not yet been published. Major questions remain about details of the plan, and how it would work. , We believe the bill – which was negotiated privately – deserves a full public airing before it’s considered.

The bill promises some long-term positive changes, including significant border security measures, an end to chain migration, and a switch to green card distribution based on merit.

But many problems have not been satisfactorily addressed. For example, we must make certain that convicted criminals are not eligible for any legalization, and if these individuals attempt to stay here, that they are arrested and promptly deported.

We must ensure that only those who have played by the rules – and not those engaged in identity theft – receive Social Security benefits. This proposal would enable illegal immigrants to collect Social Security benefits for the time they were unlawfully in our country. At a time when we are already facing major shortfalls in our ability to pay benefits for future retirees, this represents an unfair burden on the American taxpayer. We must end the rampant document fraud that plagues our workplaces today, and do it in a way that is legally enforceable.

Some of our colleagues, sensing the fragile nature of the proposed compromise, want to rush it through the Congress immediately. This would be a major mistake. It is too important and too complicated to rush. The legislation requires extended Senate debate, with full opportunity for public input and criticism, and an open process for amendments to strengthen its provisions.

In 1986, the Congress approved a similar compromise plan that, in return for amnesty for most immigrants here illegally, promised an end to porous borders and disregard for our laws. Those promises were not honored. The amnesty legislation instead actually encouraged further disrespect for our laws, and led directly to the situation we face today.

As the bill reaches the Senate floor this week, our goal will be restoring the integrity of our borders, providing guest workers with opportunity, not amnesty, and preserving our social security for all who legally qualify. Our contributions to the debate will continue to be positive, and constructive.

Our country needs immigration reform. We must ensure that it’s done, and done correctly.

Kay Bailey Hutchison

Monday, June 4, 2007

Illegal aliens cast ballots in Bexar

Election fraud story out of Bexar county: Hundreds of illegal aliens are registered to vote:

Hundreds of illegal immigrants have registered to vote in Bexar County in recent years and dozens of them have actually cast ballots, canceling out the votes of U.S. citizens, 1200 WOAI news will report Thursday morning. Figures obtained by 1200 WOAI news shows 303 illegals successfully registered to vote, and at least 41 cast ballots in various elections.


Another Liberal who has no clue about property rights - Eric Alterman arrested for trespass after Democrat debate!

Immigration Facts: Where Illegal Aliens Reside

Over 1 million illegal aliens in Texas in 2000. How many are in Texas today?

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Website shows why Taiwan should be admitted to the WHO

With all the negative aspects of international affairs to deal with it's refreshing to report that there are positive aspects to consider. The web site discussed below is one of two web sites that received the State Department's 2007 Doors to Diplomacy Award. I expect some would not approve of such State Department activity and I do not necessarily endorse it, but the Taiwan web site designed by 13 to 18 year olds is really well done, highlights the best aspects of internationalism, and shows that it is not just the US that provides international health services aid to other countries.

International Medical Aid, built by four students in Taichung County, Taiwan, explores the international community’s development of health services in Taiwan, and Taiwan’s interest in paying back to the world community with assistance to those whose health care remains insufficient. Just click here, watch and listen.

BTW, China blocked Taiwan's recent bid to join the Word Health Organization (WHO).

Presidential Campaign Update

The next Republican Presidential Candidates Debate is on Tuesday, June 5 in Manchester, New Hampshire. Immigration is topic number one these days, so Romney grows hard on immigration. See also his blast of McCain-Kennedy. Meanwhile Fred Thompson continues to have a great pre-campaign, as the conservative base looks for someone to believe in:

"Folks, we're a bit down politically right now, but I think we're on the comeback trail, and it's going to start right here," he assured his listeners. "It's like the American people are waiting for us," he continued. "They're waiting for us to remember why we're doing what we're doing, about the ideas that inspired us, to remember who the leaders were that inspired us."

Cook and Rothenburg, who think the nominees will be Romney v Clinton, describe Fred Thompson thus: "He’s a vessel each of them can pour their hopes and dreams into, the Republican Barack Obama."

Liberal website Salon on Ron Paul and his campaign:

He wants America to pull out of the United Nations, NATO, the International Criminal Court, and most international trade agreements. He wants to abolish FEMA, end the federal war on drugs, get rid of the Department of Homeland Security, send the U.S. military to guard the Mexican border, stop federal prosecutions of obscenity, eliminate the IRS, end most foreign aid, overturn the Patriot Act, phase out Social Security, revoke public services for illegal immigrants, repeal No Child Left Behind, and reestablish gold and silver as legal tender.

Maybe it's his anti-Iraq War or anti-Drug War positions, but here's a strange-bedfellows alert:
"He's my new hero," gushed the liberal Maher to his viewers.

On the Democrat side: Star parker on why Americans don't like Hillary Clinton. I consider Barack Hussein Obama the "Jimmy Carter" candidate so Underestimating Obama no more shows the Obama campaigners are trying to make 2008 like 1976; but I don't want to relive the Carter years, any more than I want a third Clinton term. Richardson is panned after he did poorly on Meet the Press. No VP slot for him!

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Real Bigotry With Bill Maher

In case HBO does not take much notice of my comments I'm sharing them with you, the Travis Monitor Blog community. Please send HBO your comments on this matter.


Bill Maher, host of HBO's "Real Time", tore into Jerry Falwell on the May 18 edition of his show, saying, with a photo of Falwell in the background, such things as, “... death isn’t always sad." The worst comments from Maher came from his argument for turning homosexuality into a religion, with references to the Mass as gay oral sex and reception of Holy Communion as gay oral sex.

Here is the clip of Bill Maher, the Falwell hating, anti-Christian, anti-God bigot. WARNING: the material is very offensive.

My comments to HBO

Subject: Real Bigotry With Bill Maher

I don't get cable at home so I only watch HBO on occasions when I'm visiting family, friends, or on business travel, but you can be sure that I won’t be watching that Christian bashing, disrespecter of the dead, anti-God, anti-Christian, anti-traditional family bigot Bill Maher.

Maher's gleeful comments about the death of Jerry Falwell were nothing compared with his disgusting twisting of Scripture (taken from Psalms 23:4) and the most important Christian sacrament into homosexual activity, not to mention his depiction of God Himself as a homosexual.

I assume he was trying to be funny, but if I were you I would be ashamed and I would warn Mr. Maher that you did not hire him to be a Christian hating bigot….Or did you?

Friday, June 1, 2007

American Protestants who have converted to Islam are counted among those who back suicide attacks

As alarming as the story below is, the most depressing part of it to me is the last line of this, the last paragraph:
Among respondents who were converts, 91 percent were U.S. citizens. Of the total number of converts, 59 percent were black, 55 percent followed Sunni traditions and 67 percent had converted from a Protestant denomination.

Young U.S. Muslims back suicide attacks

By Jennifer Harper
The Washington Times
May 23, 2007

The first nationwide survey of Muslim Americans revealed that more than a quarter of those younger than 30 say suicide bombings to defend Islam are justified, a fact that drowned out the poll’s kinder, gentler findings suggesting that the community is mainstream and middle class.

“There are trouble spots,” noted Andrew Kohut, director of the Pew Research Center, which conducted the survey of 1,050 adult Muslim Americans — two-thirds of whom were foreign-born — January to April. The results were released yesterday.

“We should be disturbed that 26 percent of these young people support an ideology in which the ends justify the means,” said Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, chairman of the Arizona-based American Islamic Forum for Democracy.

“But the survey also found that only 40 percent of the overall American Muslim population would even admit that Arabs were behind 9/11. They’re in denial, refusing to take moral responsibility, and the radicals will feed on this,” Dr. Jasser said.

Farid Senzai of the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding said he had “concern” about evidence of youthful radicalism.

The revelation that some young American Muslims condone violent bombings led coverage from CBS News, the Associated Press, Reuters, the Detroit Free Press, the Los Angeles Times and other news organizations.

“I’m not surprised that the press picked up on the bad news, because that’s what sells. I’d like to see another ethnic group get asked the same question,” said Laila Al-Qatami of the District-based American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee.

“What’s also missing were responses about what it means among Muslims to be an American, or their opinions about education, health care and domestic issues. Failure to include this stuff lends an impression that American Muslims are different,” she added.

The survey, which estimates the U.S. Muslim population to be 2.3 million, emphasized the more positive findings, billing the group as “middle class and mostly mainstream,” socially assimilated and happy.

“Clearly, this public comes across as much more moderate than much of the Muslim public in most of the world. They are decidedly American in outlook,” Mr. Kohut said.

Indeed, seven out of 10 of the respondents rated their communities as good or excellent and said they would get ahead through the “American work ethic,” a greater percentage than found in the general public. Seventy-three percent have never been discriminated against as a Muslim on these shores, and 78 percent said they were either “pretty happy” or “very happy” with their lives.

Practicing their religion was a positive as well: 74 percent said they were satisfied with the quality of mosques in their neighborhood. Most identify themselves as Democrats (63 percent) and seven out of 10 voted for Sen. John Kerry, Massachusetts Democrat, in the 2004 presidential race. Sixty-one percent say homosexuality should be discouraged.

Yet many are troubled by politics or policy: 69 percent disapprove of President Bush, 75 percent disapprove of the Iraq war and 48 percent disapprove of the war in Afghanistan. Only 26 percent say the war on terrorism is a “sincere effort,” compared with 67 percent of the general public.

Where are their hearts? It depends on the age group. Sixty percent of the younger-than-30 demographic said they were “Muslim” first, and a quarter were Americans first. Among the total population, 47 percent consider themselves Muslims first and 28 percent are Americans first.

Social factors also come into play. The survey found that 54 percent are dissatisfied with the general state of the nation, 53 percent say life has gotten more difficult for Muslim Americans since September 11, 2001. More than half believe that their population has been singled out by the U.S. government for surveillance.

Among respondents who were converts, 91 percent were U.S. citizens. Of the total number of converts, 59 percent were black, 55 percent followed Sunni traditions and 67 percent had converted from a Protestant denomination.

The Surge Is Working

AP reports Iraq residents rise up against al-Qaida, asking U.S. forces for help in a battle that ended up neeting 45 Al Qaeda terrorists killed or captured. Bill Roggio notes progress against Mahdi Army and continuing "Awakening" movements where the Sunnis are peeling away from Al Qaeda insurgency:

"A significant portion of the 1920 Revolution Brigades, in addition to elements of the Islamic Army in Iraq, have turned on AQI in Anbar and other provinces. The two insurgent groups have given substantial support to the Awakening movements spreading throughout Iraq."
An FR commentator notes: The surge is working. More Al QAEDA and Sadr-Madhi Army leaders have been killed or captured in the past two months that were in the previous year.

The main skepticism on the surge is from the media and 'chattering classes'. Will our forces be given the means and the time necessary to win? Our main battlefront there is in DC, not Baghdad.

UPDATE: Major Gerd Schroeder on "Why the Surge Is Working, Yet More Americans are Dying":

The most important factor that has contributed the fledgling success of the surge, and simultaneously to the significant increase in American deaths, is that the Americans began to move into Combat Outposts (COPs) or Joint Security Stations (JSS) starting in February 2007 (BIII, Page 8). The number of JSSs alone has steadily increased from 10 JSSs in February 2007 to 65 as of 23 May, and more will be established in the coming months. In short, our troops have moved and continue to move permanently into the neighborhoods in which they are work. They have increased their visibility, activity, and interaction with the population, while concurrently increasing their contact with the bad guys.

More interaction means a more effective operation but with greater casualties. The difference is that sectarian violence is down, the coordination and collaboration with Iraqis is up, and the the Al Qaeda terrorists are increasingly under pressure, with more enemy killed and captured than ever before.

GOP Base Revolts on Immigration

WND: RNC fires all phone solicitors as cash 'evaporates' over Bush":

Previous GOP donors have given RNC solicitors a lashing about the president's proposed immigration measure.

"We have not heard anyone in our donor calls who supported the president on immigration," said a fired phone solicitor, who described himself as a Republican activist.

"We write these comments up from each call, and give them to a supervisor who passes them on to the finance director or the national chairman," he said. "But when I talked with the White House, the people there told me they got nothing but positive comments on the president's immigration stand."

Yikes. Talk about out of touch.

I had to send this note to the RNC:

I am one of those who has stopped giving to RNC because of the support of pro-amnesty candidates, and the fact that Bush decided to install a pro-amnesty figurehead to lead the RNC. Unless and until the RNC stops being supportive of such candidates, I will take my political contributions elsewhere.

For goodness sake, tell the White House the truth. Tell them that the President's eager support for legalization for illegal aliens, and his failure to secure the border and enforce immigration law, is destructive to the unity of the party and is demoralizing, disaffecting and angering the Republican base. We cannot follow leaders who walk away from our values and ideals!

UPDATE: New York Times posts an article on the GOP rebellion over immigration, noting the hue and cry from the GOP base:

This week, after Mr. Bush’s suggestion that those opposing the Congressional plan “don’t want to do what’s right for America” inflamed conservative passions, Rush Limbaugh told listeners, “I just wish he hadn’t done it because he’s not going to lose me on Iraq, and he’s not going to lose me on national security.” He added, “But he might lose some of you.”

Such sentiments have reverberated through talk radio, conservative publications like National Review and Fox News. They have also appeared on Web sites including and, where postings reflect a feeling that Mr. Bush is smiting his own coalition in pursuit of a badly needed domestic accomplishment, and working in league with the likes of Senator Edward M. Kennedy, a co-author of the legislation.

White House officials said it had led them to engage the blogosphere in a concerted way for the first time, posting defenses on liberal and conservative sites.

White House officials are welcome to have their claims dissected, but I'll give the same advice Senator Coburn gave: “I think President Bush hurts himself every time he says it is not amnesty,” said Senator Tom Coburn, Republican of Oklahoma, referring to the bill’s legalization process for immigrants. “We are not all that stupid.”

UPDATE: DC Chapter of FreeRepublic 'freep' of the RNC HQ on June 4 to protest amnesty for illegal immigrants: