Strategic vision

There are millions of Muslim and/or Arabic immigrants in the West, in both Europe and America. The ones that have embraced their new homes are not interested in joining ISIS or going on any suicide mission, with the key phrase being “new home.” Those that feel welcome, comfortable, and accepted in the West, are poor candidates for ISIS recruiting.

ISIS knows this, which is why their strategy is based on trying to drive a deep wedge between Westerners and the Muslim citizens of Western nations. Those who dismiss suicidal terrorist attacks as “self-defeating,” and who advocate retaliation against Muslims and Arabs, are an important part of ISIS’s hope for future recruiting within the borders of our various homelands.

Dr. Ben Carson, come on down.

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said Friday that in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris, the United States should block refugees from the Middle East from coming to the United States…

“I would be working with our allies using every resource known to man in terms of economic resources, in terms of covert resources, overt resources, military resources, things that they don’t know about — resources,” he said. “In an attempt not to contain them but to eliminate them before they eliminate us. We have to recognize that the global Islamic movement is an existential threat — it’s very different than anything we’ve ever faced before.” [Emph. added.]

It’s just like Jesus used to say, “If any man smite thee on thy right cheek, eliminate him, his family, his neighbors, and anyone who shares his religious views, before they eliminate thee.”

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Guess who

Here’s a mini mystery for you this fine Tuesday morning.

BLACKS: This is wrong. We’re being singled out by the police, harassed, beaten, even murdered. And the murderers are getting away with it. #BlackLivesMatter!

GUESS WHO: (*shrug*) Ah, quit whining, #AllLivesMatter.

PALESTINIANS: We need help! Israelis are bulldozing our homes, occupying our land, and murdering our children, and getting away with it. #PalestinianLivesMatter!

GUESS WHO: (*shrug*) Ah, quit whining. You probably deserve it. In fact, let’s take literally billions of US taxpayer dollars and give it to Israel, no strings attached.

STARBUCKS: This holiday season, we’ll be serving coffee in red cups.

GUESS WHO: Will they say “Merry Christmas”?

STARBUCKS: No, they won’t say anything.

GUESS WHO: Oh you evil people! How dare you subject us to such horrific persecution? Have you no decency? We won’t stand for it! It’s an absolute outrage! (Etc., etc., etc…)

 Need a hint? Hmm, maybe not.

(Note: any similarity between GUESS WHO and any person(s) now living or dead is entirely their own fault.)

A revealing headline

Somehow a NY Times headline popped up in my Facebook news feed, and it said something about GOP candidates “sticking to the script, if not to the facts.”

The story was about how party loyalty seems to have completely replaced factual accuracy as the gold standard by which candidates are judged these days, but I think perhaps it did not go as far as it might. I think that the NYT has summed up, in a nutshell, why so many conservatives like Donald Trump, despite his rather unreliable track record as a conservative.

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Armed response

Ben Carson is in the news again, in the wake of the mass murder in Oregon, for claiming that the Holocaust could have been prevented if German Jews had been armed.

“I think the likelihood of Hitler being able to accomplish his goals would have been greatly diminished if the people had been armed,” Carson said. “I’m telling you there is a reason these dictatorial people take guns first.”

In other words, the way to prevent genocide, or attempted genocide, is to take up arms and fight back against the police, according to Carson. You know who took that advice? The Palestinians. How did that work out for them?

Clarification

Some of you may have heard that the Pope made a special visit to Kim Davis during his recent trip to the US—which apparently you weren’t supposed to do, or at least the Vatican is somewhat chagrined that you did. By way of damage control, they’ve released a special statement announcing that the Pope’s visit to Davis should not be seen as indicating that he supports her. They also announced this morning that they’re kicking out a senior priest because he publicly admits being gay.

So just to clarify the Vatican’s press release, the Pope absolutely does support Davis. They just don’t want people to see it.

As you sow…

I have to confess feeling a certain amount of schadenfreude right now. For years I’ve been watching conservatives pushing themselves into an escalating cycle of dickishness, promoting tribalism, bravado, self-serving hypocrisy, self-righteous bigotry, and disregard (if not outright contempt) for the objective facts. This downwards political spiral was one of the things that led me to stop being so conservative myself: I felt shamed and betrayed by the political philosophy I was raised in, and I left it.

So I’m taking a certain amount of satisfaction right now in seeing Donald Trump running for president as a conservative. As others have pointed out, he has not been a particularly conservative person as far as his past attitudes and behaviors are concerned. But in many ways, he’s the epitome of everything the Republicans have worked so hard to make themselves into. He may not be the hero the GOP wants, but he’s the hero they deserve.

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The true shame of the Confederacy

I happened to flip on the local Christian talk radio briefly during my commute home last night, and heard an interesting conversation. They were talking about South Carolina taking down the Confederate flag from the state capitol, and how goose-bumpy they felt to see history in the making. And then one of the 2 co-hosts made a statement that really caught my attention. It was rush hour, so I didn’t have the opportunity to write it down, but as best I can recall, she said something like this.

“And of course the real shame of the Confederacy was that they used the Bible to justify slavery. God is not mocked.”

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Which definition?

Republicans are making a lot of noise right now, accusing the Supreme Court of “changing the definition of marriage.” (They’ve done focus groups and market research and found out that this meme is the one that has the most positive response from potential donors.) But in fact, the Supreme Court has not changed the definition of marriage at all, and here’s how you can prove it.

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