Weekend Open Thread – Gross Negligence Version

Democrats are desperately trying to paint Hillary’s server debacle as simply a partisan attack with no “there there” following Kevin McCarthy’s comment, but the FBI has another term for it – Gross Negligence, which carries a possible ten year sentence and there is no doubt that she is guilty:

Under 18 USC 793 subsection F, the information does not have to be classified to count as a violation. The intelligence source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity citing the sensitivity of the ongoing probe, said the subsection requires the “lawful possession” of national defense information by a security clearance holder who “through gross negligence,” such as the use of an unsecure computer network, permits the material to be removed or abstracted from its proper, secure location.

Through deleting emails after being notified to turn over her server, to allowing her attorney, without security clearance, to have a flash drive of those sensitive emails, Hillary has violated federal law through those two actions alone. But I think what Hillary is really trying to cover up more than anything else is her communiqué with long time friend Sydney Blumenthal who was on the ground in Libya and allegedly encouraging Hillary to push Obama to move forward and depose Gaddafi. Why? Sydney felt that he could financially benefit from working with the new government in Libya, and if proven to be true, this would be the greatest scandal in American history. At the very least, Hillary helped depose a foreign leader who posed no imminent threat and left the country in complete shambles and a vacuum of which was filled by jihadists. Judgement like that is a complete disqualifier for POTUS.

On another disturbing note, the weakness of Obama continues to make life miserable for people around the world and he could care less. Obama’s indifference to the full out assault on Israeli’s by emboldened Palestinians is shameful and lays to rest the question of whose side Obama is really on. There is no question that through his actions, Obama has turned his back on Israel and has abandoned the long established relationship we have with the Middle East’s only democracy.

These are interesting times and decent civilized people had better wake up, pay attention, and do what is needed to defeat the current assault on democracy, personal freedom, common sense, and civility. And the greatest threat resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

32 thoughts on “Weekend Open Thread – Gross Negligence Version

  1. Amazona October 17, 2015 / 11:32 am

    Stephen Moore writes of another example of gross negligence, which he says can lead to another financial crash.

    From his article: (emphasis mine)

    Now the Fed, the White House, and Congress are recreating the very same conditions for another financial bubble. If it pops, we could replay the same devastating effects as occurred during the first bubble in 1999 and 2000. It is doing so in four ways:

    First, the Dodd-Frank regulations are exacerbating one of the greatest consolidations of the banking industry since the Great Depression. Those indispensable small banks, like the one Jimmy Stewart operated in the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life,” are disappearing from the American landscape.

    This is largely because big government policies are slanting the system in favor of big banks. Because of this, we have created a competitive advantage that allows the sharks to swallow the minnows. Meanwhile, the “too big to fail” safety net to Bank of America, Citi, and other titans exacerbates this cost advantage of big banks and thus makes bailouts even more likely in the future.

    Second, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are engaged in the same low down payment lending mania of 2004-07, and the Obama administration is on a Bush-like homeownership push. Fannie and Freddie are again guaranteeing mortgages with as little as 3 percent down payment. Have we learned nothing at all? Fannie and Freddie are again guaranteeing mortgages with as little as 3 percent down payment. Have we learned nothing at all?

    Third, the Fed refused to tighten its stance in September, and, hello, that easy money policy is how we got into the mess in 2000 and then in 2008. Wall Street cheered Janet Yellen’s decision to keep the cheap dollars flowing.

    Finally, there is the saturation of debt. When the crisis hit in 2008, the national debt stood at a little under $10 trillion. Now we are over $18 trillion. Government is hopelessly over-leveraged, and the interest rate exposure is enormous. With each one-percentage-point rise in long-term rates, the servicing costs of the debt rises by about $1.8 trillion over ten years.

    The point is that government and politicians have no learning curve. All of the conditions of financial wreckage are reappearing. The presidential candidates should start warning voters that Washington is rebuilding another financial house of cards.

    I have written before about the misery of trying to find small business financing. In 2011, as we were putting together our small family business, time after time we would be told that the business plan was excellent, that the market needed us, that similar businesses were making plenty of money, but regulations kept them from loaning us money. There were times we would receive approval only to have it rescinded because a new batch of regulations had just come in.

    We are already seeing a seller’s market developing around here, in residential real estate, and I was told by a realtor that houses in the cities near me are on the market a week or less. Think low interest and easy financing might have something to do with that?

    We can’t raise interest rates because that will call attention to the massive federal debt, which the Complicit Agenda Media have been helping the Obama administration keep under the radar of the clueless American public. When the government wants to increase the debt, the last thing it can tolerate is raising the cost of service on the debt it already has, so interest rates remain locked in at the lowest rate possible. There is easy money for buying houses but not for developing small business—that’s an interesting recipe for growth.

    • M. Noonan October 18, 2015 / 1:37 am

      You put your finger on it – and my view is that the real reason for the Fed (and central banks around the world) are keeping interest rates low is not so much because of the fragility of the global economy (though that is part of it) but because governments have gone on a borrowing spree since 2008 and if interest rates go up even a little bit, plenty of governments simply will not be able to carry the freight (and above a certain point, we probably couldn’t, either). A very large portion of our national debt is carried in bonds which have a 5 year or less maturity. No problem when our bonds have a 1.36% interest rate on a five year note…but suppose interest rates go up and we have to pay off those 1.36% five year bonds in 2030 with bonds holding a 3.5% interest rate? Crushing. Devastating. Horrible. We’d either have to massively increase taxes, massively cut spending, or both…and that would be just to make financial ends meet. And we’re better positioned to handle that because the dollar is still the world’s reserve currency (and in spite of some efforts, it likely will remain so for many, many decades, even if people really do start casting about for a replacement). But, for instance, France is borrowing buckets of money at low interest…if interest goes up, even a nation like France would be facing the prospect of actual default.

      The bottom line is that the world is trapped, now – we can’t pay the debts we’ve got and we can’t stop borrowing. Eventually, the smash comes. How long it takes remains to be seen – I didn’t think it could go on as long as this. But debts that cannot be repaid, won’t be. Period.

    • tiredoflibbs October 18, 2015 / 9:44 am

      What is making the routes through social media is another piece of propaganda and half truths – “Obama reduces deficit more than any president since world war 2”. Dutiful progressives and mindless drones (sorry for the redundancy) post this and share it at every turn.

      They fail to mention or acknowledge that this President has spent and ballooned the debt more than all the Presidents before Bush combined.Obama needs more cash, he just prints it. Where is the concern for the debt that they showed when Bush was President? Answer the progressives control the Executive and he can do no wrong.

      Progressive concern for the debt, the economy and law enforcement are all how it is presented to the public. Thes public is kept ignorant by the Praetorian Guard media. The public perception that everything is great is exacerbated by the complicit media. Similar studies illustrate this example: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/10/17/kostigen-extreme-weather-perceptions/74119888/

      Of course, it is obvious if a non-Progressive is put in the White House, the media, the pRegressive politicians and their mindless drones will immediately start saying how bad everything is. This is inevitable and unavoidable until the public wises up and the Senate and House leadership begin exercising their CONSTITUTIONAL authority and stop this pResident and his minions. Those authorities were written in to prevent what is happening by wise individuals. They are safeguards and not some white attempt at thwarting the first black pResident.

  2. Amazona October 17, 2015 / 11:52 am

    Remember the over-the-top make-your-ears-bleed screeching about the silly claim that Scooter Libby had “outed” Valerie Plame? OMG they did everything but call for a rope and gallows. All this over a deskbound CIA analyst, known in the Beltway for working for the CIA, with a husband who bragged about having a wife working for the CIA, in the context of explaining to the Vice President of the United States how someone got sent to Africa to look into yellowcake sales. An innocent man was dragged through the muck, with great expense to him, as he was publicly pilloried by the Rabidly Radical Left and its mindless mouthpieces, threatened with prison, and generally made the target of a concentrated effort to completely destroy him—for quietly commenting, to someone with a presumably high security clearance, something well known in social and political circles.

    Now that same RRL rabble is taking the opposite tack, and trying to dismiss, discount, cover up and generally sweep under the rug a multi-year security breach in which the Secretary of State of the United States allowed the most serious, secret, potentially damaging, information in the administration to be discoverable by any moderately skilled hacker. She defied not only the law but basic common sense, and in so doing made sure that nothing ever emailed to or from her in her official capacity was secure. That is FOUR YEARS of making information available to anyone with basic hacking skills and an interest in what the United States government was doing, talking about, planning, etc. And the Left are good with this.

    Oh, BTW, they are also good with her lying about it, trying to cover up what she had done, and about her allowing Americans in service to their country be murdered by ignoring their plight and pleas for help, and lying about THAT. Of course, they worked up to the Big Lie acceptance, practicing by overlooking smaller lies, such as being under attack while landing in Baghdad.

    A presumptive opponent of hers in the upcoming presidential race, Blabbin’ Joe Biden,casually revealed the identity of the Seal team that took out Bin Laden, putting them and their families at risk, with no fallout from the RRL As a matter of fact, a lot of them want him to be president.

    • Cluster October 17, 2015 / 1:57 pm

      That does it, I am not voting for either Clinton or Biden! 🙂

      Good summary though of just how duplicitous and despicable the left is.

      • Amazona October 17, 2015 / 6:41 pm

        That does it, I am not voting for either Clinton or Biden!

        Glad I have finally made a difference.

  3. Cluster October 18, 2015 / 8:42 am

    Here’s a good article on the challenges conservatives face and some strategies to fight back:


    Approach #3 – ending, or neutralizing, public funding of progressive institutions – which aims at the most insidious advantage progressives have in shaping public opinion. Every year government collects taxes, and when that is not enough it prints money, to fund thousands of progressive causes and political groups fighting the war for public opinion, and to subsidize a smorgasbord of wasteful, ineffective progressive agendas such as wind turbines, global warming “research,” and failing government-run schools. Every year conservatives pay their taxes with barely a whimper to fund the causes and ideas they fight against. Every single initiative forced upon our country by progressives requires conservatives’ money — in essence, our consent. It is ironic that the colonists’ refusal to pay a simple stamp tax ignited mankind’s greatest revolution.

    • Bob Eisenhower October 18, 2015 / 1:11 pm

      Neutralizing progressive institutions is important but it is essential we stay true in our reasons. Saying the gov’t prints money to keep the NEA and PP afloat is easily rebuffed with a pie chart of the budget. We print money to keep the military afloat and service debt. Those programs, deplorable as can be, are such a small sliver of the budget that arguing for their closure for budgetary reasons will lose every argument.

      • Cluster October 18, 2015 / 5:16 pm

        Keeping the military afloat and servicing debt ARE the federal govt’s responsibility PP is not, nor is the NEA arguably. There are LOTS of small slivers of the budget and they all add up, so claiming that one is less expensive than the other is a non starter.

      • Bob Eisenhower October 18, 2015 / 5:20 pm

        I’m just saying that if you make the argument that the cost of these programs busts the budget, as in, they have to print money to support these programs, you’re gonna lose. Better to argue against therm based on the bazillion arguments against them than one so easily toppled.

      • Bob Eisenhower October 18, 2015 / 5:21 pm

        Let me clarify that my use of the word “bazillion” is vague. There may well be TWO-bazillion arguments against PP and NEA.

      • Amazona October 18, 2015 / 5:40 pm

        I suggest that there is really only one argument against funding Planned Parenthood, the NEA, and so many other plans, policies, etc. Don’t forget that Obamacare has taken over one-sixth of the American economy, and has to be included, along with other Progressive schemes.

        The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

  4. Cluster October 18, 2015 / 9:34 am

    Oh and regarding Australia’s gun confiscation program that Hillary supports:

    Gun owners in Australia were forced by new law to surrender 640,381 personal firearms to be destroyed by their own government, a program costing Australia taxpayers more than $500 million dollars. The first year results:

    Australia-wide, homicides went up 3.2 percent
    Australia-wide, assaults went up 8.6 percent
    Australia-wide, armed robberies went up 44 percent (yes, 44 percent)

    In the state of Victoria alone, homicides with firearms are now up 300 percent. Note that while the law-abiding citizens turned them in, the criminals did not, and criminals still possess their guns.

    Don’t expect these facts to stop her.

    • Retired Spook October 18, 2015 / 10:00 am


      Technically it was not a gun “confiscation”, but a gun “buy-back”. In true progressive fashion, however, the peoples’ guns were bought back with their own tax dollars. So I guess, in reality, it really WAS confiscation.

  5. Amazona October 18, 2015 / 12:05 pm

    Here is another annoying (to the Left) fact: AGW is being challenged—again—and by a theoretical physicist and a man who was “A former climate modeller for the Government’s Australian Greenhouse Office, with six degrees in applied mathematics..” (emphasis contained in original article)

    Freeman Dyson is a 91-year-old theoretical physicist who was a contemporary of Einstein at Princeton, has received multiple international awards for his scientific efforts, and has published numerous books and papers on a wide range of topics.

    Dyson is criticizing scientists who advance what he describes as an ‘agenda-driven’ perspective on global warming.

    In an interview with The Register, Dyson responded to questions about the forward he just wrote for a scientific paper that confronts the “overrated” concerns about CO2 in the atmosphere:

    “That is to me the central mystery of climate science. It is not a scientific mystery but a human mystery. How does it happen that a whole generation of scientific experts is blind to obvious facts?”

    Dyson, who describes himself as 100% Democrat, strongly disagreed with President Obama:

    “It’s very sad that in this country, political opinion parted [people’s views on climate change]. I’m 100 per cent Democrat myself, and I like Obama. But he took the wrong side on this issue, and the Republicans took the right side.”

    Part of the issue, according to the interview and the CO2 paper, is that the scientific models that have been used to predict climate outcomes have been wrong:

    “What has happened in the past 10 years is that the discrepancies between what’s observed and what’s predicted have become much stronger. It’s clear now the models are wrong, but it wasn’t so clear 10 years ago. I can’t say if they’ll always be wrong, but the observations are improving and so the models are becoming more verifiable.”

    For example, NASA has admitted that it is unable to explain a 17-year hiatus in an average global temperature increase, which has led to 95% of manmade global warming projections being false.

    Explaining why this refusal of scientists to adjust their opinions when confronted with facts that seemingly refute their manmade global warming hypothesis, Dyson gives a couple of reasons.

    He suggests that there has been a confusion between “pollution,” something definitely man-made and solvable, and “climate change,” a feature of nature and mostly beyond the control of humanity.

    Furthermore, he also asserts that there’s not only a “large community of people who make their money by scaring the public,” but an element of groupthink at play, as well:

    “Real advances in science require a different cultural tradition, with individuals who invent new tools to explore nature and are not afraid to question authority. Science driven by rebels and heretics searching for truth has made great progress in the last three centuries. But the new culture of scientific scepticism is a recent growth and has not yet penetrated deeply into our thinking. The old culture of group loyalty and dogmatic belief is still alive under the surface, guiding the thoughts of scientists as well as the opinions of ordinary citizens.”

    Dyson concluded with an assertion and an appeal to dispassionately evaluating facts:

    “Climatic effects observed in the real world are much less damaging than the effects predicted by the climate models, and have also been frequently beneficial. I am hoping that the scientists and politicians who have been blindly demonizing carbon dioxide for 37 years will one day open their eyes and look at the evidence.”

    If anything, Dyson’s disputation of manmade global warming just adds to the list of scientific voices who are bucking the received “consensus” on temperatures.


    Meanwhile, in Australia, Dr. David Evans “…has found that, while the underlying physics of the model is correct, it had been applied incorrectly.

    He has fixed two errors and the new corrected model finds the climate’s sensitivity to carbon dioxide (CO2) is much lower than was thought.

    It turns out the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has over-estimated future global warming by as much as 10 times, he says.”

    Dr. Evans says “…… his discovery “ought to change the world. But the political obstacles are massive,” he said.

    But…but…but for a while temperatures WERE rising! If not due to CO2, then what?

    “Dr Evans has a theory: solar activity. What he calls “albedo modulation”, the waxing and waning of reflected radiation from the Sun, is the likely cause of global warming.

    He predicts global temperatures, which have plateaued, will begin to cool significantly, beginning between 2017 and 2021. The cooling will be about 0.3C in the 2020s. Some scientists have even forecast a mini ice age in the 2030s.”

    Hmmmm—here is yet ANOTHER scientist who thinks that proximity to a huge blast furnace in the sky makes us a little warmer. And this is the theory that alarmists find questionable, and even deserving of a jail sentence.

    • Amazona October 18, 2015 / 2:04 pm

      Bob, you have said that you have an open mind about AGW but think it makes sense (paraphrasing here, sorry if that is not exactly what you said) and that you think there is a vast majority of scientists who agree with the theory.

      Here are two top scientists, who point out, from a scientific perspective, not only data contradicting this alleged “vast majority” but who also recognize the immense political pressure to go along with this “majority”.

      The old culture of group loyalty and dogmatic belief is still alive under the surface, guiding the thoughts of scientists as well as the opinions of ordinary citizens.

      an ‘agenda-driven’ perspective on global warming

      How does it happen that a whole generation of scientific experts is blind to obvious facts?

      ,,,the discrepancies between what’s observed and what’s predicted have become much stronger. It’s clear now the models are wrong….

      It’s very sad that in this country, political opinion parted [people’s views on climate change]

      …..there’s not only a “large community of people who make their money by scaring the public,” but an element of groupthink at play, as well…..

      NASA has admitted that it is unable to explain a 17-year hiatus in an average global temperature increase, which has led to 95% of manmade global warming projections being false…..

      I am hoping that the scientists and politicians who have been blindly demonizing carbon dioxide for 37 years will one day open their eyes and look at the evidence.

      …….his discovery “ought to change the world. But the political obstacles are massive,” ……

      Here are two of the people who are most competent to evaluate the computer models and other tools of prediction, as well as what is already known, who both recognize the immense role that POLITICS plays in the drama. So my question is, why DOES politics have the major role in this discussion? Isn’t science supposed to be objective, apolitical?

      This is what the so-called “deniers”have been saying all along—-look at the SCIENCE, not the politics.

      I recently read another article commenting on the huge damage done to the world in general by this AGW movement. Billions and billions of dollars are being diverted from areas where the money is truly needed, from helping people escape from poverty, from building or repairing infrastructures, from medical research, from feeding and housing the poor, from dealing with real pollution (what would even a portion of this money do go help get rid of the huge floating island of trash in the Pacific?) even from national security. And what has been accomplished by this massive transfer of funds? So, far, almost exclusively the enrichment of a few connected elites.

      • Bob Eisenhower October 18, 2015 / 2:45 pm

        “Bob, you have said that you have an open mind about AGW but think it makes sense.”

        Actually, I said I do NOT think AGW makes sense but that I can’t just turn my back on a global scientific consensus.

        Your post is very illuminating. I do not know about Dyson but I’ll look him up. If he is who the articles says he is, then it is a compelling addition to the discussion.

      • Amazona October 18, 2015 / 3:53 pm

        Dyson is an interesting character. He has opined that “….. anthropogenic global warming exists” and has written that “[one] of the main causes of warming is the increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere resulting from our burning of fossil fuels such as oil and coal and natural gas.” (Wikipedia)

        Again from wikipedia: “ However, he believes that existing simulation models of climate fail to account for some important factors, and hence the results will contain too much error to reliably predict future trends:

        The models solve the equations of fluid dynamics, and they do a very good job of describing the fluid motions of the atmosphere and the oceans. They do a very poor job of describing the clouds, the dust, the chemistry and the biology of fields and farms and forests. They do not begin to describe the real world we live in …


        “…..has also argued against ostracizing scientists whose views depart from the acknowledged mainstream of scientific opinion on climate change, stating that “heretics” have historically been an important force in driving scientific progress. “[H]eretics who question the dogmas are needed … I am proud to be a heretic. The world always needs heretics to challenge the prevailing orthodoxies.”


        “He has, however, argued that political efforts to reduce the causes of climate change distract from other global problems that should take priority:

        “I’m not saying the warming doesn’t cause problems, obviously it does. Obviously we should be trying to understand it. I’m saying that the problems are being grossly exaggerated. They take away money and attention from other problems that are much more urgent and important. Poverty, infectious diseases, public education and public health. Not to mention the preservation of living creatures on land and in the oceans.” “


        ”In a 2014 interview, he said that “What I’m convinced of is that we don’t understand climate … It will take a lot of very hard work before that question is settled.”

        In other words, Dyson is a scientist in the truest sense of the word: an avid pursuer of fact, with an open mind and the willingness to admit what he does not know. This is why I respect what he says—-it is not based on orthodoxy but on being candid about what does and does not make sense, about what can and cannot be proved. He can see the difference between opinion and fact. I don’t have to agree with him on everything to respect him, and I think he provides a very constructive approach to looking at the whole issue of temperature change.

        The so-called “deniers” of AGW are very similar to Dr. Dyson, in that we think it possible that SOME human activities MAY have SOME impact on SOME aspects of weather—-many think that cloud seeding intended to increase snowfall for the Salt Lake City Olympics had an impact on weather for a large area of the West, for example—-but do not wholeheartedly embrace the extreme claims of either catastrophic results or the ability to do much about it.

        The simple fact is, while we can acknowledge the effects of human influence, such as the reduction in territory of rodents like the prairie dog, common sense tells us that this is just something that we have to accept because the cost of “correcting” this is just too high, for too little in return. There are questions the fanatics simply refuse to address: Even IF human activity has resulted in a slight increase in worldwide temperatures, (1) how serious is this increase, (2) are there offsetting benefits to this increase, and (3) would the cost of “correcting” the causes of this increase, even if possible, be worth the reduction—-if possible—-to a different, lower, temperature? Since we don’t HAVE a “correct” temperature for the Earth, how can we even decide if the minor changes we have been able to document are moving away from the ideal, or toward it?

        The refusal to acknowledge any benefit to a slight warming of the planet, as well as denial of the effects of solar activity and proximity show a strong ideological foundation for the arguments made by AGW fanatics.

  6. Amazona October 18, 2015 / 2:20 pm

    A recent article by Matt Barber discusses the true cultural war that is growing in strength and scope: emphasis mine

    “In its most distilled form the culture war signifies the worldly manifestation of an otherworldy spiritual battle between good and evil.

    African Cardinal Robert Sarah, a man many view as a potential future pope, recently made news by boldly drilling down into this reality. During the Vatican’s ongoing Synod of Bishops, Sarah noted that the “idolatry of Western freedom,” which he described as “atheistic secularism” (aka modern liberalism), and “Islamic fundamentalism” represent twin threats to the world, not unlike Nazism and communism. Atheistic secularism and Islam, he observed, are “almost like the Beasts of the Apocalypse.”

    “What Nazism-fascism and communism were to the 20th century, Western ideologies on homosexuality and abortion and Islamic fanaticism are to today,” noted Sarah. “Certain keys allow us to discern the same demonic origin of these two movements: they both advocate a universal and totalitarian law, they’re both violently intolerant, destroyers of families and the Church, and openly anti-Christian,” he concluded.

    Indeed, while there are exceptions, the “progressive” left is overwhelmingly anti-Semitic, anti-Christian and pro-Muslim. Liberals and Islamists, such as those belonging to the American-Islamic terrorist group CAIR, as well as Obama’s pals in the Muslim Brotherhood and Iran, have forged a bizarre and notably incongruous sociopolitical partnership I call the “Islamo-’progressive’ axis of evil.” The only explanation for this, as far as I can tell, is best illustrated by the maxim: “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

    The common enemy, of course, is Christ Jesus, who is Truth.”


    • Bob Eisenhower October 18, 2015 / 5:37 pm


      I’m sorry but this posting is very disturbing to me.

      Perhaps I’m misunderstanding it, but when I hear someone represent evil as “idolatry of Western Freedom,” alarms go off. I idolized Western Freedom, as I know you do, too. We both kneel at the altar of the freedoms found in the West and idolize the Nation’s Founders that made it so.

      I am no fan of liberalism and am appalled by the imprint Islam has put on the World but I do not equate them, as Cardinal Sarah does in your clipping. And I certainly do not compare either to communism of the Nazis. All four entities are/were different in strengths and goals. I tend to write people off as soon as they make the Nazi comparison unless they have a specific reason and not simply that Nazis are the go-to boogeyman.

      The Cardinal if African, which means his worldview will be distinctly different than mine. For that reason, I would wait until I heard more of this man’s views before writing him off. I don’t know if that is one sentence out of a much more nuanced opinion, or if that WAS his opinion as a whole.

      • Amazona October 18, 2015 / 8:51 pm

        Bob, my original response was the same as yours. But I went back and read it over again, and found that if I accepted the Cardinal’s definition of “idolatry of Western freedom,” as “atheistic secularism” (aka modern liberalism), it was less offensive. Upon reflection, it seems that the Bishop is not referring to what you and I think of as Western freedom being idolized, and therefore being a threat, but to atheistic secularism being an idol. It may be a small difference, but I think a significant one. I think he is saying that Western freedom has allowed atheistic secularism, in the form of modern liberalism, to become a religion in and of itself, to become idolized, and that this, along with Islamic fundamentalism, “represent twin threats to the world, not unlike Nazism and communism.”.

        In that context, the rest of the comment makes a very good point.

        I don’t know if English is the native language of the Cardinal—sometimes a literal translation can lead to a subtle misstatement of a comment—-or if you and I both had a knee-jerk reaction to what we took as slighting or insulting Western freedom. Also, people of other countries often have a distorted concept of what is the prevailing culture in the United States, taking what they see on TV and in movies as accurate representations of what mainstream America believes and holds sacred. I ran into this when I lived in a resort area where so many people were from other countries, and in my own travels, and was constantly having to correct misconceptions about “Americans” because people thought that Americans were what they saw on Dallas and Dynasty and in movies. (When a girl who worked for me invited a South American man to go home to the Midwest with her to spend Thanksgiving with her family, he later told me he was astounded to learn that “Americans do things like that”. “Like what? I asked, and he said “Get together with their families to celebrate holidays”.

        So when the Cardinal says “What Nazism-fascism and communism were to the 20th century, Western ideologies on homosexuality and abortion and Islamic fanaticism are to today,” he is talking about the perception of Western culture presented to the world through our various media, mostly through the entertainment medium. I think if you can get past the mistaken idea that the secular liberal ideologies on homosexuality and abortion actually represent true Western values, you can see that he is making an interesting point in relating them to the corrosive impact on decency and freedom represented by Nazism-fascism and communism.

        Skip the term “Western freedoms” and just look at “atheistic secularism” and “modern liberalism” being linked with Islamic fundamentalism as twin dangers to civilization and see if that makes a difference in how you see the article.

        BTW, I posted it to prompt thought, not necessarily as a 100% reflection of my own ideas.

      • M. Noonan October 19, 2015 / 12:48 am

        I have a friend – a fellow Knight of Columbus – who is originally from Nigeria. I believe he has sworn his oath of allegiance to our nation; be that as it may, his wife is American and so, of course, are his children. He is still, though, deeply connected to his home village. From his description of the place, it only seems to have recently received electric power and as of yet does not have internet access (though he and some others provided computers for the kids to learn on).

        They are clearly poor – while my friend, with his American income, is by their standards fabulously rich. Though he’s a few years older than me, when I asked whether back home he is considered one of the elders of the village, he said, “no; I’m too young”. As for the tone of that society – not too long ago he decided to send his old car to Nigeria so that when he visits, he doesn’t have to rent a car. I was rather astonished that he’d send something so valuable, so far, without being able to be sure what will happen to it…he was astonished that I thought that anything bad would happen to it. Of course his people will carefully watch his car and make certain no harm comes to it. The car probably has a cash value in the neighborhood of some years of the total village income…and it is perfectly safe there. Because those people are decent, Christian people – and decent, Christian people don’t do wrong things.

      • Amazona October 18, 2015 / 9:09 pm

        I also think we need to get over the knee-jerk rejection of any reference to or comparison to Nazism. It existed, it was real, it had an identity, it had a following, it had an impact on the world, and its ideology is very similar to some ideologies today. I think we need to stop cringing when there is any comparison to Nazism, or for that matter to Hitler, unless analysis shows that the comparison is really just a demagogic tool. The word “Nazi” was slang shorthand for National Socialist Party, and I think it is time we start to look at that name as we see so much acceptance of a self-defined Democratic Socialist, as the leader of the National Socialist Party was elected by the democratic process.

        There ARE valid comparisons, possibly important comparisons, and we are limiting our ability to learn from history if we automatically disregard them out of arbitrary squeamishness or an automatic assignment of some malignant motive in making them.

        For example, I think it would be legitimate to compare the rise of Hitler to the rise of Obama, as long as the comparison is restricted to comparing the mental states of Germany and the United States as being depressed, seeking a new leader, etc. and the rise of both eventual leaders as their emotional appeal based on that and on their personalities and promises of hope and change. Up to that point, valid comparisons could be made, which could lead to legitimate and possibly important discussions about the dangers of demagogues rising to power in nations where cynicism and pessimism are rampant, about the dangers of hyper-emotionalism overtaking reason. There is a very valid comparison between the crowd spectacles of early Nazi Germany and its iconic imagery leading to mass hysteria and the eerily familiar backdrop of the acceptance speech of Obama at the Dem convention in Denver, with its reverb in the sound system to add that touch of otherwordly power and charisma. and the swooning of women at Obama speeches. When I saw the backdrop to that speech, I commented that when Obama learned that the Pepsi Center was on Speer Boulevard, he thought it was in honor of Albert Speer. Stop short of the Holocaust and I think it is quite legitimate to compare various Leftist government philosophies to what is happening here in the United States.

        Of course, I am the one constantly harping on the need to understand POLITICS, to understand the different political ideologies that lurk behind superficial party identification, so that is going to be my focal point when I read about any political party or movement. I think people in the United States need to realize, for example, that when they vote for a Dem for president they are not voting for gay marriage but for a political ideology represented by the political philosophy of an infinitely, or nearly infinitely (no Lefty has ever given us a limit) expandable Central Authority, with little power left to local government or the people.

      • M. Noonan October 18, 2015 / 11:48 pm

        Cardinal Sarah, whom I only became aware of recently, is clearly a formidable character – one thing I do like about him is how he vigorously resists cultural imperialism from our Progressives…going to Africa and daring to tell the people there how to live!

        As for the idolatry of our freedom – I think it a very clear statement. Our freedom has become the worst sort of idolatry. We’re mostly worshiping ourselves, of course, but we’re also worshiping money, power, fame and a host of other things. Cardinal Sarah would be the first to defend real freedom – freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, etc. But freedom to have murder and mayhem presented on television for our entertainment? Not quite so much.

        I’ve been saying for some years that the burgeoning Church in Africa is the world’s hope – and not just the Catholics (though that is far the largest part of it), but even the Protestant Africans. It is they, not us, who are better adhering to the doctrines of the faith. It is they, also, who are fighting back against the efforts of western Progressives and Islamist militants to destroy the faith. Seminaries in Africa are full to bursting with soon-to-be priests and religious…and they will come here and re-convert us back to our old faith.

      • Amazona October 20, 2015 / 10:49 am

        Here is an article that touches on what the Cardinal said. An excerpt:

        Regarding the SCOTUS decision on same-sex “marriage”, the flying of the rainbow flag at the White House, etc.

        “But one thing that very few Americans saw, including the millions of same-sex marriage supporters who aren’t especially political or ideological, was the quite revealing celebration among some really radical quarters.

        Among them, Communist Party USA and its publication, People’s World—successor to the Soviet-funded and directed Daily Worker—were thrilled with what Anthony Kennedy and friends had done.

        For communists, this was a stunning victory, the securing of a long-elusive effort to vanquish the fixed marriage model set forth long ago by nature and the Creator. Indeed, if you thought the White House seemed eager to hoist the rainbow colors, you should have seen the American Communist Party.

        In fact, the party of the red flag had been waving the rainbow flag before June 26, 2015. Communist Party USA has been pumping the full “LGBT” agenda for several years now.

        This intriguing appreciation from American communists is no surprise to those of us who study communism for a living and thus are forced to read websites like People’s World (as well as the homepage of Communist Party USA) as an occupational hazard. We know that one is far more likely to see the rainbow flag at People’s World nowadays than a red flag with a hammer and sickle.

        Really, though, the two flags are, in limited but meaningful ways, fighting for certain shared objectives. For today’s communists, the “LGBT” agenda, especially on marriage, is the hammer and sickle to take down the natural, traditional, biblical, Western/Judeo-Christian model for marriage and family that they have long despised. I’ll here very briefly summarize some of the history.

        Efforts to fundamentally transform marriage and family have been long at work, but never (until now) accepted and pushed by the mainstream. In the past, these efforts were spearheaded by the most dangerous radicals. For two centuries, leftist extremists made their arguments, from the 1800s to the 1960s, characterized by the Communist Manifesto, where Marx and Engels wrote of the “abolition of the family!” Even then, in 1848, Marx and Engels could call “abolition of the family” an “infamous proposal of the communists.”

        “Blessed is he who has no family,” Marx wrote to Engels, at best only partly in jest. Marx’s partner in crime detested family and marriage so much that he refused both. The ideological duo fulminated against the “bourgeois claptrap” of marriage, which was merely a “system of housewives held in common.” Engels was carrying the banner to smash monogamy a century before the 1960s New Left adopted the credo.

        Efforts to revolutionize family and marriage continued, from socialist utopians like Robert Owen, Charles Fourier, and Albert Brisbane to cultural Marxists in the Frankfurt School such as Herbert Marcuse and Wilhelm Reich to 20th-century leftists and progressives ranging from the Bolsheviks—Lenin, Trotsky, Alexandra Kollontai—to Margaret Sanger, Betty Friedan, Kate Millett, and ’60s radicals Bill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn, and Mark Rudd.”


        The Left is a religion, in that it is a belief system, and it demands total loyalty and commitment. This is why it is so focused on destroying the two biggest challenges to its authority—-religion and the family. It has already nearly destroyed the third potential challenge to its supremacy—education, including a free press.

      • M. Noonan October 20, 2015 / 11:27 pm

        I’m reminded that it was, I believe, Kollantai who went too far even for Lenin – I might have got my commies mixed up, but I think it was her who was at the forefront of trying to abolish the family in early Soviet Russia. Her ideal was that sexual activity would be discharged as if one were just getting a drink of water. Lenin opined that this is all well and good, but no one wants to drink water from a gutter.

        Still, though, destroying the family is pretty basic to the left – as is destroying religion, private clubs, etc. All of these things are, correctly, identified as props holding up the Judeo-Christian system. They have to go – and if they are to remain at all, then they may only be mere transmission belts for government orders. What our leftists don’t realize is that once all these things are destroyed, there is nothing between the individual and the overwhelming power of the State. They think this ok because they assume they’ll run the State and thus won’t be at any risk…and they never learn. A State which destroys people must keep destroying people, for ever, or that State will fall. Our Progs busily destroying religion in service of their earthly paradise fail to realize that if they succeed, they’ll be sitting in a GULAG right along with the religious believers.

  7. Cluster October 19, 2015 / 8:24 am

    Speaking of gross negligence, allowing Paul Krugman editorial space is beyond gross negligence. Krugman has been so wrong, so often that I am surprised anyone still reads his tripe. Here’s his latest column extolling the socialist virtues of Denmark and longing for the day when the US adopts their policies:


    Now aside from the fact that the entire population of Denmark is less than 6 million, which is equivalent to saying that what works well in Logan, UT will work just fine in NY City, it took me just 2 seconds to find the article linked below outlining the challenges of the Denmark utopian society, in which Krugman is quoted.


    Here’s the money line (pun intended):

    “Danes probably got used to consuming welfare services more than they strictly needed to.”

    • Amazona October 19, 2015 / 8:41 am

      NOW !!??

      • Cluster October 19, 2015 / 9:13 am

        Let’s just say it has accelerated in the last few years. 🙂

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