Thursday, April 10, 2014

Cruising the Web

John Kerry is so contemptible. Now he's blaming Israel for making his ill-considered Mideast peace process go "poof." As John Podhoretz writes,
The first thing to say is that if a peace process can go “poof,” it can’t have been much of a peace process. Any serious discussion in which two parties are motivated to reach a negotiated arrangement wouldn’t be susceptible to going up in smoke all at once.
That would indicate it never had any form or substance to begin with.

And how on earth was it Israel who made Kerry’s fantasy deal go “poof”? After all, it sure looked like the key moment that tossed Kerry’s “peace process” onto the dung­heap of history was last week’s Palestinian decision to seek membership as a sovereign country in international organizations — a move that’s always been universally seen as complete rejection of negotiating a “two-state solution.”
But why blame the Palestinians when Israel refuses to allow itself to be processed out of existence.
But if the negotiations had been serious, if the Palestinians were really looking at them as though they could lead to a final agreement on the contours of a state, Abbas and his team wouldn’t have let the talks go “poof” over the new permits.

These talks mean nothing to them; they’ve done nothing to advance negotiations in all these months. They’ve moved on nothing, agreed to nothing, made no goodwill gestures toward Israel or the United States.

And Kerry? He’s basically fine with this. He’s full of understanding. He understands it would be difficult for Mahmoud Abbas to acknowledge Israel as a “Jewish state,” so he doesn’t act as though Abbas’s refusal to do so says anything about Abbas’ viability as a negotiating partner.

Abbas’ recalcitrance should’ve told John Kerry everything he needed to know.
But Kerry doesn’t want to know. What he wants is a Nobel Peace Prize he’s never going to get.

That’s why he started this ludicrous process in the first place — to secure himself a consolation trophy after his humiliating defeat at the hands of George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential race.

Now, here is John Kerry’s monument: By whoring after a deal he couldn’t get to satisfy his own wounded pride and fulfill his own vainglorious wants, he has been exposed for all to see as a deceitful, pompous, self-righteous and vindictive fool — not to mention a world-historical two-time loser.

The documents that the House Ways and Means committee released yesterday indicated even more malfeasance on the part of the IRS and Lois Lerner in targeting conservative groups. But we have reached another impasse since the same administration that was helped by the actions of the IRS refuses to conduct any sort of true investigation and Democrats are now declaring that it is time to end all investigations since they have declared that nothing happened. Think about this. The IRS interfered in politics to help one party and that same party now declares that there should be no more investigation. How convenient. Imagine what the MSM would be doing if this involved a Republican administration. Is there no malfeasance by this administration that the MSM will keep focus on?

In the wake of Brandeis University's shameful decision to refuse to bestow the honorary degree that they had offered to Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Wiliam Kristol reminds us of the sorts of people they've chosen to honor in the past.
As Lori Lowenthal Marcus notes, Brandeis University has in recent years bestowed an honorary degree on Tony Kushner, who called the creation of Israel as a Jewish state “a mistake” and who attacked Israel for ethnic cleansing and for causing “terrible peril in the world.” Brandeis has also honored Desmond Tutu, who compared Israel to Hitler, attacked the “Jewish lobby” as too “powerful” and “scary,” and complained of the “Jewish monopoly of the Holocaust.”
Let us remember the courage that Ayaan Hirsi has shown in her lifetime.
Ali was born in Mogadishu, Somalia. In 1992 she escaped an impending arranged marriage to a relative, running to the Netherlands, where she learned the language and established a life. She rose to become a member of the Dutch parliament, where she worked to further the integration of non-Western immigrants into Dutch society.

In 2004, Ali made a film with her friend, Theo Van Gogh. That film, “Submission,” is about the oppression of women in conservative Islamic cultures.

After “Submission” was aired on Dutch television, an Islamic extremist murdered Van Gogh who was enraged by the portrayal of Islam. A letter pinned to his body contained a death threat to Ali. She eventually fled Holland and Ayaan Hirsi Ali now lives in the United States.

Ali evolved from being a devout Muslim to one who questioned her faith, to ultimately and resolutely rejecting it.

“I left the world of faith, of genital cutting and forced marriage for the world of reason and emancipation. After making this voyage I know that one of these two worlds is simply better than the other. Not for its gaudy gadgetry, but for its fundamental values.” That is a quote from Ali’s book, “Infidel.”
That is her crime. She dares to reject a religion that so diminishes and oppresses women. For that she lives her life under threats to her life. And for that Brandeis students and its president decided she didn't have the moral authority to speak before their campus. For shame.

Yup, Obamacare is driving up health plan premiums higher than ever before. Do the Democrats think that voters won't notice that sort of blow to their family budgets?

If you're into this sort of diving into the political weeds, Larry Sabato has a perceptive column about how difficult it is to make conclusions about trends in partisan voting in presidential elections since it is so hard to pick which election year should serve as a baseline.

The Nationil Journal wonders if Marco Rubio is the "last establishment man standing." Yesterday, a co-worker asked me for my prediction for the GOP nomination in 2016 and Marco Rubio was my guess. But that can change 40 times over the next couple of years.

This error in Rolling Stone's cover photo is a head-scratcher. They had to find some facsimile of the Constitution to use in the picture and then they had to go out and find John Hancock's signature from the Declaration of Independence. They wouldn't have found both images together. So didn't that strike someone as a hint that John Hancock didn't sign the Constitution?

This chart explains why the Democrats keep ginning up phony "war on women" issues. Meanwhile, Jennifer Rubin presents a round-up of Democrats hoisted on their own petards on their phony war.
The big mistake the Dems made was using a statistic virtually everyone knew was phony. That allowed media and Republicans to have a field day. The White House looks pretty dishonest, which is just punishment for its transparent effort to enrage women.

Speaking of ignorance, take a look at this map portraying where Americans think Ukraine is located. There are guesses from Brazil, Florida, Australia, to Greenland.

Despite the Democrats demagoguery about how despicable the Republicans are for voting against the Paycheck Fairness Act, it wouldn't have done much to erase the pay gap between men and women because it doesn't address the reasons why there is such a gap. It's not discrimination, but the choices that women make in career and family decisions.