Watcher’s Council Nominations – Bordering On Insanity Edition

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Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

This week’s contest is dedicated to the men and women of the IDF..

שאלוהים מגן עליהם ולתת להם נצחון

Council News:

The Council In Action!!

*Dave ‘Hube’ Huber of The Colossus Of Rhodey scored this week with a great piece at the College Fix, REPORT: Hillary Clinton Raked In Nearly $2 Million in Campus Speaking Fees

*And Debra Heine,our own Nice Deb has an excellent take down of our absentee president up at Breitbart, Bad Optics No Deterrent To An Imperial President Who Refuses to Visit Border #ComeAndSeeIt

This week, The MidKnight Review, The Pirate’s Cove and The Elder Of Ziyon earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address ( which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out Wednesday morning

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members. while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week….

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!

Forum: What Are Your Reflections And Thoughts This July Fourth?

Every week on Monday morning , the Council and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week’s question: What Are Your Reflections And Thoughts This July Fourth?

The Razor : I’ve been diving into Ancient Roman history, and I recognize that the Roman metaphor for America’s decline is a cliché, but sometimes the amount of material supporting it is compelling.

As for this Fourth, I don’t recall another time in my 5 decades when America was this divided. I feel that the fabric of our Republic is rent beyond repair, and what’s worse, few seem to care. Everyone is shouting at each other from behind the mental barricades erected by their ideological leaders, and anyone who dares venture into the no-man’s-land between them gets cut down. Lord knows I’ve tried, but I’ve been met with such vehemence and mindless hatred from people who should know better that it’s difficult to do anything but despair for a moment before returning to my own barricade.

Bring on the barbarians.

 GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD :4 July 1776 fired off a crazy rocking rolling ride that hasn’t stopped ‘stirring things up’ on a global scale.

Advancing arrogance into an art form with a remarkable relentless risque commitment to liberty, egalitarianism, individualism, and laissez-faire values. 

America differs qualitatively from all other nations, because of her unique origins, nat’l credo, historical evolution, and distinctive political and religious institutions.

Great Satan is magically especial because she was a country of immigrants and the first modern democracy. 

Loud, proud and rowdy – early America forecast future stuff with a provocative lingo that still fits today. “Don’t Tread On Me!” “Liberty Or Death”, “Live Free Or Die” 

Great Satan’s superiority of the American xperiment is reflected in the perception among Americans of America’s role in the world. That American foreign policy is based on moral principles is a consistent theme in the American hot diplopolititary gossip – a phenomenon recognized even by those who are skeptic of such an assessment. 

This inclination to do right has been virtually unique among the nations of the world – and for this very reason – America has been totally misunderstood. How could a nation so rich, so successful actually, really be so unselfish and so caring?

Unconvincing (and either historically igno – or deceitfully dishonest – either term will do) critics cry Great Satan must have darker motives! America must be seeking imperium – to dominate everyone else, suck up all the oil, to trade and rob blind for America’s selfish purposes. 

People from more grasping, less idealistic societies find it nigh impossible to accept that America honestly believes that giving everyone opportunity is the real roadmap for abundance and happiness everywhere – not merely in the magical Great Satan.

Americans honestly believe that securing other people’s freedom is actually like the best guarantee that America can keep her own.

Great Satan does not want to dominate the world. Americans want to live in peace and hope other people will too.

Great Satan will go out into the world, redress errors, stop uncool unacceptable behaviour, to first challenge, then annihilate threats to our liberty.

Creative destruction is Great Satan’s middle name. It is her natural function, for she is the one truly revolutionary country in the world for more than 2 centuries. 

She does it automatically, and that is precisely why creeps and tyrants hate her guts, and are driven to attack her. An enormous advantage, despots fear her, and oppressed peoples want what she offers: freedom. 

Amazingly, some suspect states, illegit leaders and some people have not yet comprehended that America’s primary intention is to preserve and keep our own land and liberty and all it’s prosperity and that America will do anything and go anywhere to make it happen.

Great Satan built the modern world.

And She knows her way around.

 Bookworm Room : I always wonder, on 4th of July weekend, what my community is thinking.  They put flags on their houses, attend parades, have picnics and backyard parties, and watch the fireworks.  I suspect that few, if any of them, think of this as something other than a three day weekend dressed up in red, white, and blue.  And perhaps, after 238 years, that’s exactly the way it should be.  Freedom is a way of life, so much so that we can casually celebrate it.

My worry, of course, is that if we take our freedom so much for granted that it simply means a long weekend and a party, we are no longer sufficiently invested in it to recognize how precious it is, and to protect it accordingly.  We’ve become like the wealthy woman who wears her diamond encrusted “tennis” bracelet everywhere, without thinking about its value, and then is shocked one day to discover that, while playing tennis, she actually lost it.

When we guard things too zealously, we destroy our ability to engage them.  Just as a tennis bracelet that lives only in the safe is useless for the purpose (decoration and pleasure) so too do we destroy our freedom if we guard it with such zealous paranoia we can no longer enjoy its bounty and blessings.  But the happy medium, of course, is to use that freedom, all the while being aware that it is a rare treasure and, while it should be enjoyed, it must be guarded as well.

So on July 4th, I enjoy the national party . . . and try to do everything in my power to keep the party rolling along.  The alternative, I fear, is a very ugly hangover, either in the Soviet mode or as a part of the Caliphate.

 Ask Marion: I wasn’t born in the United States, turned 2-years-old right after we arrived, after my parents waited 7-years for their okay to come. And they made sure we appreciated this country, knew her history and got involved; for they knew that you cannot love and honor what you don’t know or don’t miss. I get choked up and my eyes well up saying the pledge of allegiance, singing the Star Spangled Banner or while watching fireworks to patriotic music… so I’m a mess on the 4th of July weekend.

In 2013 I wrote a piece entitled the American Patriotic Season that encompasses a lot of my thoughts about the patriotic holidays from Memorial Day through Veterans Day that includes suggested activities, that was reposted by request for July 4th 2014.

Our family celebration of this patriotic holiday, as with others, has changed somewhat from my childhood through my children’s childhood, to now… but for as long as I can remember it always included watching the 1942 academy award winning movie “Yankee Doodle Dandy”, the biography of patriotic songwriter and playwright George M. Cohan starring James Cagney. When we were kids the Million Dollar Movie used to play the same movie for a week, every week, and it was always Yankee Doodle Dandy every 4th. So we always watched it several times each year. We always also attend a live fireworks show somewhere… at the ballpark after an Angels or Dodgers game, at one of the piers or Coronado Island, at a local park after a day of picnicking with friends and family, a few times at some special extravaganza, but we have never missed a year of fireworks..

In the past few years we have added recording and watching the PBS special “A Capital Fourth”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vOTut2dTvRk We always take some time over the weekend, no matter where we are celebrating to discuss about a book someone is or has read recently relating to that era. And we always say a prayer for America and our troops at each major meal.

And if we are home, we try to attend the local parade and do something to carry forward the day’s, the weekend’s patriotic spirit through to election day and Veteran’s day. We often decide on and volunteer for a campaign or get involved in a Pac, like Carly Fiorina’s new Pac to go Head-to-Head with Dems’ ‘War On Women’ attack. There are always so many possibilities.


This year we got involved with the Murrieta border protest. Some years we volunteer to feed the homeless and/or visit the Veteran’s Hospital that weekend. Hundreds of courageous U.S. men and women planned and headed down to Mexico on a rescue mission on July 5th to demand the release of Marine Sgt. Tahmooressi. We also bought tickets earlier in the week for Beck’s late July event: “We Will Not Conform”, relating to Common Core and public education and plan to attend one of Trevor Loudon’s SoCal Events in either Corona or Santa Ana on July 12th.

Our wrap for the weekend will be to go to the theater and see Dinesh D’Souza’s America… with as much of the family as we can gather up and then head home to discuss it over a slice of flag cake followed by the readings from our grateful bowl, like we do at Thanksgiving.

Grateful Bowl: As everyone arrives for dessert, we have each of them fill out a grateful note, to be deposited in a bowl, basket or container. At this holiday it is a note about something you are grateful for related to living in America. After dessert has been served, (with the TV off), we have everyone gather within earshot and have someone draw out the slips of paper one by one and have a designated person read them aloud.

One of my favorite events was always the unveiling of the giant American Flag at the Crystal Cathedral to the tunes of John Philip Souza music at every patriotic holiday; now sadly only a memory and part of history. God bless you all… and God bless America!

 JoshuaPundit: Ah, the Fourth. Where I live, I can sit on my deck, look down at the valley below and watch a dozen fireworks shows at once. The smell of cordite and powder mixed with bar-b-cue smoke and the odd whiff of adult refreshment is to me a very American aroma. It’s the smell of free men and women enjoying their leisure mixed with the odor that’s symbolic of what keeps them that way.

Our founders, brilliant men that they were recognized that the republics  that had come before  in history had all failed, and they did their very best to bequeath us a republic and a Constitution that would avoid the obvious pitfalls. We had an advantage going in because our American Revolution, unlike almost all of the others in history,  was not classed based but based on the ideals of freedom. Our isolation by two oceans and the mostly  egalitarian nature of American society also helped to preserve the republic even through the wrenching and stress of a Civil War.

Lincoln’s words from that era, that a house divided against itself cannot stand were as true then as they are  today, but I think that many of our divisions are superficial and artificially created by a new element..the installation  of an established political class. A big part of our division comes from those manufactured chasms in our society being  exploited to keep this class in power, luxury and wealth.

At this point, it’s obvious that  the majority of Americans  know that something’s seriously wrong, although they might differ on what it is and who’s to blame,although even that is becoming more obvious to those who are paying attention and put country ahead of race or party. If I’m right, what’s wrong and  who and what are to blame is going to become painfully obvious before too long, that misleading 17,000 Dow notwithstanding.

At that point,we’ll be able to see, I think, if what has usually happened in our history happens again, if the leadership  emerges that  the country needs.And I certainly don’t mean, G-d help us, Hillary Clinton or Fake-a-Hontus.

That aside, the next two elections will be crucial because they will signal exactly how we will weather the coming changes and the nature of the transition to come. History thus far has had an odd way of presenting our Beloved Republic with challenges to  overcome, and thus far we have pretty much managed to have done so, to the point where that old joke about G-d watching over drunks, little children and the United States of America comes to mind.

 And while many of our elites would be quite at home in Sodom and Gomorrah until the fire,brimstone and ashes started to fall from the sky and louse up the air conditioning, I think there are still enough righteous and decent Americans for the good will of the Divine Providence that our Founders decided to risk their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor on to continue, and to carry  us through.  

-Selah –

Well, there you have it.

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watcher’s Council Results

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The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.The Watcher’s Council wishes you all a wonderful Fourth of July. Celebrate!!

“Victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be; for without victory there is no survival.” – Sir Winston Churchill

“They dress the wound of my people lightly. ‘Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace.” – Jeremiah 6:14

“Throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the Jews people who would punish them for their corruption .The last punishment was carried out by Hitler. By means of all the things he did to them, even though they exaggerated this issue he managed to put them in their place. This was divine punishment for them. Allah Willing, the next time will be at the hand of the believers.” - Sheik Yusef Al-Qaradawi, Spiritual leader on the Muslim Brotherhood in a sermon on al-Jazeera, January 28 2009

“If They want a holy war, we will give them a holy war.” - Former Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin.

 

This week’s winning entry was Three Funerals.. And The End of The Beginning by Joshuapundit. Three Israeli teens who were kidnapped and murdered in cold blood by Hamas were buried this week and I had a few things to say about it. Here’s a slice:

Today, three young Jewish boys were laid to rest.The bodies of Eyal Yifrach, 19, Gilad Shaar, 16, and Naftali Frenkel, also 16 (HY”D)were buried in Modi’in in a ceremony that was attended by thousands of Israelis in what became a day of national mourning.

 (photo credit: Chaim Tzach)

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The bodies of the three boys, kidnapped by Hamas operatives on June 12 were found in a shallow grave near the Arab village of Halhul, just north of Hebron. According to Israeli forensic experts, they were murdered in cold blood shortly after they were kidnapped and buried hastily as their kidnappers fled. But not too hastily. As one of my sources on the scene let me know yesterday,the killers took the time first before they shoved the corpses into the hole to mutilate the boys’ bodies in classic Arab fashion.Israel’s Channel Two described the condition of the bodies as ‘harrowing’.

This was meant to send a message to the Israelis. So was the attack on the clearly marked ambulance carrying the murdered boys’ bodies to Israel to be buried, and the widespread instances of celebration of the ‘victory’ by Arabs living under the Palestinian Authority. and even in Israel itself.

Nor are children left untouched by this poison.They’re being indoctrinated as the next generation of murderers in the name of Allah.

Three schalits

Three schalits

Three schalits

The message, of course, is the same one the Arabs whom call themselves Palestinians have been sending ever since Yasser Arafat invented them. To them, or at least to the majority, this is a tribal war to the knife, no holds barred and none of the niceties of civilized behavior apply. They want the Jews ethnically cleansed by whatever means necessary. There is no desire for peace or real negotiation, no farcical ‘two state solution’ so beloved of the West and what remains of the Israeli Left. And that message is being sent out every day by Hamas, who are at least more honest about the matter and Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah, on whose official Facebook page the image immediately above this paragraph appeared.

After these murders, the message finally may be beginning to sink in with most Israelis, especially given the response from the West. After all, the Palestinians are whom they are, and their brutality is to be expected.But the civilized nations of the West?

The Israelis can’t have failed to notice that for all the pro-forma condemnations from the US, the UN and the EU, the underlying message is ‘so sad your children got murdered, but you ought to be used to that by now. We’re still going to continue funding the new Fatah-Hamas government because they’re one big happy family now, so the important thing for Israel is to exercise is restraint. Suck it up.’

To be totally honest about the matter, it is difficult for me to express adequately the way that message makes me feel…that the American government now funds and supports a genocidal group that would celebrate my murder or the murder of my loved ones just as enthusiastically as they’re celebrating the murder of those three boys. Three unarmed boys murdered in cold blood, whom Wafa, the PA owned news service referred to as ‘three soldiers’. I admit that I still haven’t sorted out my feelings on that one, but my thoughts are far from pleasant.

President Barack Hussein Obama, the leader of the country that is supposed to be Israel’s strongest ally had nothing to say at all about the matter for three weeks, and finally released a statement pretty much along these same lines once the bodies were found, perhaps because someone in the State Department reminded him it might be a good idea to say something. In contrast, that supposed cold fish, Russia’s Vladimir Putin, made several calls to Israeli PM Netanyahu and Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman over the newly installed Jerusalem-Moscow secure hotline during the crisis, and took the time and trouble after the bodies were found to compose a hand written letter to Netanyahu, asking him to express Putin’s personal condolences to the boys’ families.

Much more at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Sultan Knish Our Consensus Rulers submitted by The Independent Sentinel.

In this piece, the Sultan examines the reality of what ‘consensus’ actually is as practiced by our elites. Do read it.

Here are this week’s full results:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week! Don’t forget to tune in on Monday AM for this week’s Watcher’s Forum, as the Council and their invited guests take apart one of the provocative issues of the day and weigh in…don’t you dare miss it. And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!

Watcher’s Council Nominations – Kaddish Edition

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Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

This weeks’ Council nominations page is dedicated to Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Shaar, and Naftali Frenkel, (HY”D)

ברוך אתה הו אדוננו אלוהים, השופט האמיתי

Council News:

This week, Right Reason, Seraphic Secret, The Pirate’s Cove and TinaTrent.com earned honorable mention status with some great articles. In fact the honorable mentions are especially good this week, and will definitely reward your attention

Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address ( which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor  by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out Wednesday morning

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members. while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have this week….

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!

Forum: Which Should America Choose – Shi’ites, Sunnis or Neither?

Every week on Monday morning , the Council and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week’s question:Which Should America Choose – Shi’ites, Sunnis or Neither?

 The Independent Sentinel: We need to bomb ISIS. We should have bombed them a month ago when they were on the Syria-Iraq border. They must be stopped. They present an existential threat to the United States and her allies. I don’t view it as taking sides. We need to halt or slow their advance. I don’t care about Sunnis. Shias – I care about whoever threatens the US and Israel. I’d like to see us arm the Kurds to the hilt. We most definitely should not work with Iran – that’s an insane idea.

Robert Avrech, Seraphic Secret: I spoke to an Israeli intelligence officer the other day and asked what the IDF was thinking about the Sunni-Shia war. His response was simple and instructive: “They have been killing each other for centuries. There is no side to pick. Only pinpoint strategic and tactical opportunities from which to choose. For Israel this might be a good time to destroy Iran’s nuclear capabilities. We have written off America under Obama. We will do it ourselves. Watch the skies.”

GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD :Great Satan’s side should be against the Artist Formerly Known As al Qaeda In Iraq.

Easier said than done – see, ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) is essentially the “lead dog” of a larger Sunni militant coalition.

ISIS has been fighting in conjunction with a number of other Iraqi Sunni militant groups. Effectively the entire rogue’s gallery of Sunni militias from the 2006-2008 civil war have been revived by Prime Minister Maliki’s alienation of the Sunni Arab community since 2011. AQI, the Naqshbandis, the Ba’th, Jaysh al-Muhammad, Ansar al-Sunnah, and all of the rest are back in operation in Iraq, in at least tacit cooperation with a number of Sunni tribes.

Of greatest importance, we need to recognize that the Iraqi Security Forces are fast becoming little more than a Shia militia. This trend began 3-4 years ago when Prime Minister Maliki began to push Sunni and Kurdish officers out of the armed forces, to replace them with loyal Shia officers. As a result, even before the current debacle, the ISF had become far more Shia than it had been, with fewer and fewer Sunnis and Kurds. Even before the dramatic events of last week, most Sunnis and Kurds referred to the ISF as “Maliki’s militia.”

Since last Tuesday, we have seen large numbers of Sunni Arab and Kurdish soldiers desert the ISF, leaving an even more homogeneously Shia force. There are still Sunnis and Kurds in the ranks and in the officer corps, but that seems likely to dissipate over time.

The selective and careful use of air assets is appropriate and necessary to blunt the advance and bottle up elements into isolated pockets if possible, or break the lines of supply and command, at minimum.

With Syrian, US, Iranian forces (and possibly others, the Saudis) already in the airspace defined areas of operation and rules of engagement need to quickly come about. Base our air assets in Kurdistan and hit the staging areas and logistics centers. Refine the approach to personality/decapitation tactics after intel is back on its feet. Make the Sunnis choose between a state and a state of war.

 JoshuaPundit: Just to show you what sort of creature we elected, this president and his dysfunctional team think they can choose both! On the one hand Secretary Kerry is asking congress for half a billion of your tax dollars to arm and train ‘the Syrian Rebels’, which is exactly how ISIS got so strong.

At the same time, we now have over 600 ‘advisers’ in Iraq fighting against ISIS,which means we’re fighting on the same side as Assad, Hezbollah, Iran and Moqtaddah al-Sadr’s Mahdi Army, all of them with substantial American blood on their hands to help Iran hang on to the colony under Maliki we handed them at the cost of a trillion dollars and over 4,000 lives. We’re already working with the Iranians, we’re simply using Maliki as an intermediary. And we’re also bolstering Putin’s status, of course, who just sent Maliki a dozen Sukhoi-25 fighter planes.

Which also pits us against our other allies the Saudis, Qatar and the other QCE countries who are arming, funding and training the Syrian rebels!


The only consistent policy in the Middle East this president and his minions have is hysterics when Israelis builds houses for their people and support and appeasement of Islamists at home and abroad. These folks could screw up a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and turn it into something sickening and lethal. Literally everything they touch turns to crap.

The situation in the Middle East is the same story. Barack Hussein Obama was sold to the American people as the smartest guy in the room ( with Joe Biden for – wait for it – gravitas) who was going to restore good relations with all our allies. Remember that? The reality is that none of our allies trust us today, and both they and our adversaries justifiably regard this president as a bumbling. duplicitous weakling whose word and commitments are worthless.

That’s a big part of the problem, by the way. Several people in this Forum have mentioned putting bases in Kurdistan. That would have worked just fine when we still occupied the country and the Kurds begged us to do it. Instead,  President George W. Bush sold them out for Maliki and the likes of Turkey’s Tayyip Erdoğan and actually pulled our military out of position so the Turks could bomb their villages and sent troops  across the border to rape and pillage. And President Obama responded to the complaints of the Kurds and Sunnis as Maliki  purged them from the military, stole elections and reneged on the federation agreement with total indifference. Seeing as we’re helping Maliki and the Iranians, does anyone think the Kurds trust us now? Neither do the Sunnis, after we used them in the Awakening Movement to fight al-Qaeda and then let Maliki and the Shi’tes have their way with them after we left. And what are the odds that we’re actually going to arm the Kurds or put bases there  when our new ‘allies’ Iran and Maliki as well as Obama’s BFF Tayipp Erdoğan are against it?

This is harsh stuff, but it’s reality.  We have no business picking sides in this conflict when our president’s actions have already ensured that we lose out either way. In fact, the one successful path is to do absolutely nothing:

Both sides love carnage and a war to the knife for Allah, and since Iran now has boots on the ground, we can sit back and watch as they savage each other. The last time it happened, an 8 year bloodbath back in the 1980′s, there were over a million battlefield deaths and both sides were weakened  ..at least until we stupidly took Saddam Hussein out of the equation, the regional counterweight to Iran.The idea of the Iranians, Hezbollah, the Mahdi Army and ISIS engaging in this fashion  is fine with me and as ISIS is going to be a tough nut to crack, Iran could end up being tangled in Syria and Iraq for years.

Of course, this nonsense with Iraq is causing us to ignore our real security problem in the region, Iran’s rogue nuclear program. The Iranian nuclear talks are stalled, of course, while the Ayatollahs play for time. So the major threat to our security in the region isn’t being addressed at all, because they’re playing Our Dear Leader and John Kerry like Jimi Hendrix used to play a stratocaster.

There is, of course, a perfectly good solution to dealing with Iran’s nuclear ambitions:

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We now have two successive presidents who have known full well what the Ayatollahs were up to and failed to do anything about it, even though both of them did a lot of chest thumping. That’s the main threat to U.S. security we have in the region, and the job is going to be a lot more costly and destructive because of their delays and their failure.

At this point both the Iranians and our allies know that Barack Hussein Obama isn’t going to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons. In fact, he probably welcomes the idea. Our best hope is that (a)either the Iranians get tangled up enough in Iraq and Syria to delay things, (B)this president is either impeached or out of office before things get critical or (c) one of our allies decides enough is enough and does the job for us.

I say we choose neither,

 The Razor: There is no way we should get involved – at least until ISIS is in the process of attacking American interests abroad or at home. Given our intelligence failures, which amazes me considering how much data we scoop up through electronic surveillance, it may be impossible to know this until it is too late. Unfortunately that means suffering an attack. But until that attack happens we should let the Sunnis and Shi’a do what they do best: kill each other. Supporting one side just makes us a target for both sides (if that sounds contradictory just look at what happened in Afghanistan when our attacks on the Taliban were decried as attacks on civilians by the Afghani president Hamid Karzai.)

A pox on both their houses.

 Ask Marion : I keep wrestling with this question and myself regarding it… What should we do in Iraq? Who should we support? How does it affect the Middle East… Israel? And what do we owe those who died or have lifetime severe injuries because of their service… and do we subject more troops to the same?

The more I think about, the more torn I am! But I think we have already jumped the shark when we pulled out without leaving enough troops and needed assistance to help the Iraqis do what they needed to do to hold the line and to become self-sustaining in the areas of defense and maintaining a Democratic nation.

After listening to all the experts, the general consensus seems to be that it is too late unless we want to start from scratch… a new full offensive, for which there is now support.

So at this point with all the internal problems we have I think we should maintain a low profile and what little we do offer or decide to do should be done with forethought and clarity… instead of sending advisers, drones, air support or anything else without a plan.

As Brigitte Gabrielle says:

Our elected and appointed officials must come to terms with the doctrinal basis for jihad so we can properly and effectively defend America, protect American lives and face our enemies.

So, what should we do in Iraq? We need to pray for Israel and help them survive. We should have stopped Obama from pulling out of both Iraq (and Afghanistan) completely… and now we, the Middle East and the rest of the world will pay for our foolishness and weakness as the radicals have been emboldened to move forward with their worldwide Islamic Caliphate… which has always been their goal.

The Glittering Eye : Neither. Recently our track record has been very poor–either picking the wrong factions or the wrong individuals to back. We should’ve swallowed hard and allowed Qaddafi to prevail in Libya, the military in Egypt, and Assad in Syria. Instead we’ve got chaos in Libya, less influence than we had in Egypt, increased carnage in Syria, and Iraq is now on the verge of collapse.

Rather than siding with factions or individuals we should be doing what little we can (and it’s admittedly little) to foster institutions in the countries of MENA. Institutions like a free press and an independent court.

At the very least we need to stop supporting Islamists.

  Well, there you have it.

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watcher’s Council Results

Alea iacta est! The die is cast, the  Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.

 “When one with honeyed words but evil mind
Persuades the mob, great woes befall the state.”
– ― Euripides, Orestes

“Just as every cop is a criminal,And all the sinners saints”.. - Mick Jagger,’Sympathy For The Devil’

“Not even mass corruption — not even a smidgen of corruption.” -President Barack Hussein Obama, talking about the IRS scandal with FOX News’ Bill O’Reilly, February 3rd, 2014

We had a tie this week in the Council category which I, as Watcher have to break.

There were a few entries in both categories this week on the IRS’ convenient inability to produce former IRS apparatchnik Lois Lerner’s e-mails. The Right Planet’s About That ‘Server Ate My Emails’ Thing is a detailed and authoritative roundup by someone who knows what he’s talking about on exactly why this is so much horse manure on their part, and as someone else said, an excellent indication that congress is looking in exactly the right place to get to the bottom of this disgusting scandal.

It’s a much meatier effort than its competitor, Joshuapundit’s-How The Palestinians And The Left Are Celebrating The Israeli Kidnappings which is pretty about what it sounds like..the Arabs whom call themselves Palestinians celebrating inhumanity and the West’s despicable apathy towards the kidnapping of three Israeli teen by Hamas, even as rockets continue to be launched by a member of the new unity government everyone’s touting at Israel’s civilians. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose, same old same old.

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In any event, the winner, About That ‘Server Ate My Emails’ Thing was very easy to pick, to say the least! Here’s a slice:

A brief overview of the IRS targeting scandal by Bill Still:

For those of us who have experienced life in the IT trenches, former IRS chief Lois Lerner’s claim she lost all of her emails due to a hard-drive crash is a bit hard to swallow, to say the least.

First, email is not typically stored on a personal computer’s hard-drive disk (HDD). Email accounts for most organizations are stored and accessed on a mail server—a separate computer accessed from the user’s computer via a specific network protocol like SMTP, POP3, IMAP, MAPI, HTTP, etc. Mail servers can host multiple email accounts, and typically do. That’s their purpose.

Peter Sulderman, writing at Reason.com, sums it up like this:

The loss of a personal computer hard drive shouldn’t be able to permanently eliminate emails from a well-run workplace email system. Those emails are run through central email exchange servers, and backups are typically kept using those central exchanges. Add to that Lerner’s prominence in the investigation—she has repeatedly declined to answer questions before Congress, invoking her Fifth Amendment right not to self-incriminate—and the year it took for the IRS to inform the House Ways and Means Committee that the emails were lost in a crash, and the dog-ate-my-emails bit starts to smell rather fishy.

Is the IRS really claiming both the IRS’ mail server and Lois Lerner’s local hard-drive crashed? If the server’s hard-drive failed, that would mean email for everyone within the organization who had an account on that particular mail server would not be able to access their email accounts. Email still being sent from other email accounts on the same mail server that hosted Lois Lerner’s account, and during the same time period that Lerner claims her hard-drive crashed, would indicate the mail server was still operational, despite any misfortune that befell Lerner’s local hard-drive.

System engineers who administer mail servers at the enterprise level will typically strictly follow (and continuously develop) a robust backup plan for all data on mission-critical servers. For most organizations email communication is absolutely essential, if not critical. So, any critical IRS system failures that resulted in long-term outages could potentially create havoc, thus the need to have a comprehensive and redundant backup plan.

Tax software can be extremely complex (thanks to our god-awful progressive tax laws), and must interface with many complex IRS software systems and services. So, don’t tell me the IRS does not have some competent IT staff that can keep their email domains up and running, and their data backed up, according to their own rules and regulations for the retention of data, as prescribed by law.

Powerline reports:

… U.S. law, specifically 44 U.S.C. Chapter 33, requires that agencies must notify the Archivist of any records that are destroyed and the reasons for destroying them. In addition, federal regulations establish strict recoverability and redundancy requirements. Disposal of records outside these standards requires permission in writing.

The IRS satisfies these requirements through Microsoft Outlook/Exchange systems, which are backed up using Symantec NetBackup. According to the IT specialist, IRS had some of the best people in the federal government charged with making sure these systems work as intended.

Microsoft recommends configuring redundant relational databases (RDMS) with Microsoft Exchange Server. The RDMS (relational database management system) stores and accesses all the email text and metadata housed on the server. Even if the hard-drive(s) fail, the email data is still intact in backup databases. Once a new hard-drive is installed, and the operating system and email server are configured, the data from the replicated databases can be imported into the newly configured mail server.

Many computers nowadays running mail, web, application and database servers run high RAID levels—meaning, the computer (server) has multiple hard-drives that run as backups in case the boot drive fails.

RedState.com reports:

Data retention has been a requirement for years. It is a solved problem. It is simply not credible that IRS, an agency that itself imposes data retention requirements on the general public, would not have a data retention plan, with offsite backups and a generalized disaster recovery framework. Somebody is lying when it comes to Lois Lerner’s “missing emails,” and if this were going on in the private sector, somebody would be at risk of prison.

Much more at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was the one and only Mark Steyn with a great piece on th ee-mails in his own inimitable style, We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ E-Mails submitted by The Noisy Room. Do read it.

Here are this week’s full results:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week! Don’t forget to tune in on Monday AM for this week’s Watcher’s Forum, as the Council and their invited guests take apart one of the provocative issues of the day and weigh in…don’t you dare miss it. And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!

Watcher’s Council Nominations: Amnesty By Stealth Edition

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Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

Up For Grabs

Our esteemed Council member Elise at Liberty’s Spirit has decided to take a long hiatus from blogging and is leaving the group. It has certainly been great having her aboard and all of us wish her the best in her future endeavors.

That does mean, however, that we have a seat on the Council up for grabs. If you think you might be interested or want further details on what’s involved, please leave a comment under any story on Joshuapundit complete with your e-mail address (which won’t be published, of course) for consideration.

The Council In Action!!

* Tom White at VA Right was interviewed and featured in the Columbia Journalism Review focusing on his knowledge and correct call of the defeat of Rep. Eric Cantor in Virginia by Dave Brat. Good stuff!

* Debra Heine of Nice Deb has an interesting new piece up at Breitbart concerning a One Million Dollar IRS Bounty Offered For Info Leading to White House..by one of the conservative groups that was targeted and victimized.

This week, The MidKnight Review, Sarah Honig and The Pirate’s Cove earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address ( which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor  by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out Wednesday morning

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members. while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week….

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!

Forum: If Abortion On Demand Is Both Legal And Constitutional, Why Not Suicide And Euthanasia ?

Every week on Monday morning , the Council and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week’s question:  If Abortion On Demand Is Both Legal And Constitutional, Why Not Suicide And Euthanasia ?

Virginia Right!: Or why children of illegals who were brought here through no fault of their own deserve amnesty and not unborn babies who are here through no fault of their own.

The Independent Sentinel: Why stop with abortion- it’s only a matter of geography – why not kill them after they’re born if we’re not happy with the results. Actually, hasn’t that been suggested by one of the loons Obama surrounds himself with?

Bookworm Room: Abortion on demand is legal because those who support it can argue, less and less convincingly as prenatal care and imaging advance, that a fetus is not a person. That’s a difficult argument to make about either depressed or sick people. They may not be enjoying themselves, but they’re standing there before you, large as life and twice as natural. When we seem them, we recognize their inherent vitality, a vitality that ought not to be destroyed either by what one hopes is only a transient depression or an illness (even a fatal one) that can be managed humanely.

Peter Singer — who holds an endowed ethics chair at Princeton — thinks parents should have a month after the child’s birth within which to decide to euthanize it because it’s defective. As you can imagine, the disability rights people loath him. He’s also the guy who founded the radical animal rights movement. PETA isn’t his organization, but it’s his brain child. He ran afoul of animal rights activists, though, when he said bestiality was ethically acceptable provided the animal consents. The PETA crowd said that cows can’t give consent, so it’s always rape. Did I mention that he has an endowed chair at Princeton?

As for the post-birth abortion, a Planned Parenthood representative in Florida said that it was up to a woman and her doctor whether she wanted to “abort” the baby after it was born.

It’s views such as these that have pushed me away from being pro-choice. There’s something very ugly going on there. Garden-variety pro-choice people should really look at the movement’s core and wonder whether they’re celebrating choice or death.

Simply Jews : Why, if we base our decisions on that old joke that a Jewish embryo isn’t considered a person before he/she gets a law or medicine degree, we could expand the Singer’s proposal a bit further.

Jokes aside, when I was reading this, the professor’s ideas combined with his attitude to bestiality gave me a few ideas about the professor’s immediate future that I would loath to air in this group. Not in writing anyway.

And another corollary: the case of prof Singer, like many other sadly similar cases in the academic circles cause me a grave concern about the future of our higher education and, as a result, about our future in general. I am saying “our”, because here the status is very similar.

Princeton… someone should clean up these places, or we all are in big trouble.


The Razor: First of all I do not agree that abortion is Constitutional. My view is that it was a clear-cut case of judicial overreach.

Although I am personally and very (I might add) Pro-Life I still maintain a pro-choice stance simply because I believe Law is too blunt an instrument for cases such as these that require more of a scalpel. Is abortion murder? I believe like most Americans that within the first few weeks of pregnancy, it’s not. But you get into the second trimester and especially the third, and it clearly becomes murder. Suicide is clearly murder, but should a person be charged with a crime for having attempted it? Nope because who would the State be acting on behalf of? Who is the injured party in such an instance? The State has too much power already; to intrude on a person’s decision to kill himself or herself simply strikes me as a greater intrusion than when it interferes with abortion. As for euthanasia, it should be made available to those whose condition is terminally ill. What has been happening in the Netherlands stretches the definition of “terminally ill” to include mental illness which is going too far.

No one ever says that these questions are easy. If they do then something is wrong with them. But as moral human beings we need to consider them and question our beliefs if only to avoid the slippery slope rightly feared by many. But the existence of such a slope should not empower the State nor should it increase needless suffering.

But ask me next week. Perhaps my opinion will change.

 JoshuaPundit: Actually, to answer the question directly,  we’re already there to some degree. Euthanasia is already legal in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg and up for serious consideration in most of the EU, and assisted suicide is legal in the States of Washington, Oregon, Vermont, New Mexico and Montana as well as in the countries of Switzerland, Germany, Albania, Colombia and Japan. And again, there are many more jurisdictions considering it and I have no doubt that the list will be longer by this time next year.And there’s no reason it shouldn’t be. After all, if life ends in the womb or years later in a discreet medical facility after a few papers get signed, what’s the diff? One less mouth to feed, one less file to process. Next please!

What I’m going to write next invites ridicule, which is fine. But some of you may want to mull it over.

Western culture has always prided itself on its freedoms, but the chief impetus for them has always been a recognition that the individual is important, and that freedom itself is a gift to be passed on to future generations. Our culture has changed to the point where these two principles have become something that gets mouthed frequently, but is less and less nonored in practice. What our culture has embraced instead is an anti-life stance, where the individual is dispensable and future generations don’t matter as opposed to the all important gratification of the NOW.Even though many people still hold to the realizations and principles behind the west’s freedoms, many of our leaders, educators and those who run what E.J. Terrell Jr. once called the Kultursmog do not.

I am by no means a person who says that abortion is always wrong in all situations. But we now have made abortion on demand a modern sacrament, a holy writ not to be challenged no matter what. Why shouldn’t euthanasia and assisted suicide be next on the list, along with all the other ‘changes’ we’ve embraced, or at least allowed?

We now have a leader who is a fierce advocate for actual infanticide. A mere thirty or forty years ago someone with this view would have been shunned and run out of public life. Many countries in the West are not even reproducing at replacement rates, the very definition of marriage is in the process of being dismantled, and the killing of a child because the kid was merely inconvenient is the subject of a ‘comedy’ now getting rave reviews in the usual places.

I regard that as decadent and unholy. There are really no other words for it.

America has been, in my view at least, the beneficiary of G-d’s providence in many ways. I can’t help but wonder if what we’re embracing now is going to change that.

The Glittering Eye : If that were the law, I don’t think there is a coherent principle opposing them. However, it’s not the law. The law is actually mischievous since making the state’s interest in the lives of the unborn contingent on an imaginary point of viability encourages those who oppose abortion on principle to seek to capitalize on the state’s interest and those who support abortion on demand on principle to make the imagined rights pre-viability absolute. A continuing, zero-sum conflict.

On top of that existing law is bad public policy unless you believe that we need a lot fewer people with educations and jobs and a lot more people without either one. The problem, of course, is that the coherent public policy positions (abortion on demand paid by the state on the one hand and sweeping restrictions on abortion on the other) are each anathema to a substantial chunk of the population. So we’re left with incoherent, bad public policy.

Ask Marion: Americans like to see themselves as the most compassionate people on the planet, rescuers of the downtrodden and the heroes that ride in on the white horses to save people, cultures and nations around the world… and sometimes we do and have.

But as a nation we have virtually all accepted the reality of abortion on some level, just like animal lovers have accepted our cruel system for euthanizing more healthy pets every year than any other country in the world. All God’s creatures:

In 2008 we had the choice and opportunity to vote for an all (rather radical) pro-choice ticket, Obama-Biden or a ticket with a fence straddler worried about the vote and a offending anyone, McCain, paired up with a strong pro-life candidate, who had walked the walk, Palin. We elected the radicals twice.

Abortion -> On The Ground At March For Life 2014 – New Poll: 62% of Americans Now Believe Abortion is Morally Wrong and most Pro-Choice advocates don’t even know Planned Parenthood’s Roots or who Margaret Sanger was… an absolute believer in abortion, euthanasia and eugenics. And since President Obama took office, who as Senator voted for partial birth abortions and not giving aid, care or even comfort to tiny babies who survive abortion procedure. See Gary Bauer: ‘More Babies Have Been Aborted Than Jobs Have Been Created’ Under Obama.

Economic issues aside, it is estimated that 7.5 million companion animals enter shelters each year, and additional 1 million more have been added to that number or just abandoned since the economic downturn in 2009. Only about 30% are reclaimed and approximately 2.7 million animals are adopted (1.2 million dogs and 1.4 million cats).

And over 1,200 Military Dogs have been put down by the Obama Regime.

Eating dogs was bad enough. Killing over 1,200 faithful military dogs who were protecting American troops in Afghanistan is worse:

The heroic service dogs were euthanized because they were deemed too “dangerous” for civilian adoption or jobs with law enforcement agencies, as well as for medical reasons according to U.S. Air Force reports given to Congress.

The dogs were used as guards and to sniff out terrorist bombs.

It’s not as if no homes could be found:

Currently more than 300 people are waiting to adopt a military dog, with an average waiting time of 18 months.

Betraying those who loyally served in Afghanistan and Iraq has been characteristic of the current administration. And if you actually believe that they care more about our two legged Veterans than they do about the 4-legged ones… then Houston… we have a problem. All but 1 of the Michael Vick fighting dogs were able to be rehabbed and re-homed… and none had problems. Everyone of these military canines deserved better!!

Obamaland radical crazies… just a few of the present and former Czars… advisers, cabinet members:

Kathleen Sebelius.Remember, Sebilius was an ardent supporter of murdered partial birth abortionist Tiller, and her extreme record on abortion has sadly been ignored (or hidden) by the media.

Science Czar John P. Holdren – Updated 9.2.09 He Advocated de-developing the US to a world of zero growth, says the Constitution backs compulsory Abortion and believes we should seize babies born to unwed women

Cass Sunstein, Obama’s Regulatory Czar advocated removing people’s organs without explicit consent.

Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, Rahm Emanuel’s brother and his Complete Lives System, who believes we should deny coverage to the elderly an disabled ‘for the Greater Good’

Euthanasia, Assisted Suicide, Death Panels… are all part of, or will be the result of ObamaCare!!

If we do not get rid of ObamaCare and the hold the Progressives have on our government… the death panels are already here. (remember when they called Sarah Palin crazy?, now people like Howard Dean have admitted she was right) A committee of non-medical professionals will make the decisions of who gets what treatments and medications, if any. They will decide against the old… the useless eaters as they call them; the mentally and physically disabled, including Veterans (Is there really an doubt after what we have seen at Veteran’s Affairs over the past few months:); and then anyone else they have no use for. And as the money and help dries up for those afflicted with or caring for people with Alzheimer’s, Autism, Dementia, PTSD, etc etc (all on the rise) and no help is available, the cries for assisted suicide or euthanasia will become louder… the benevolent left… will say YES!

And for the record: Rockefeller Soft Kill Depopulation Plans Exposed. Both Hillary Clinton and Bill Gates have spoken on depopulation. And you can bet it won’t be them or their families!

GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD : Personally feel it will be in the next few years.

  Well, there you have it.

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watcher’s Council Results

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The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.

“Those who hammer their guns into plowshares will plow for those who do not.” - President Thomas Jefferson

“A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity.” – Sigmund Freud

“An armed society is a polite society.” – Robert Heinlein

 “That rifle on the wall of the labourer’s cottage or working class flat is the symbol of democracy. It is our job to see that it stays there.” – George Orwell

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This week’s winner, Bookworm Room’sBookworm’s 5 Point Gun Manifesto: Or Why I believe in Gun Rights spells out oh so clearly why without the Second Amendment all the others are meaningless. Here’s a slice:

I. INTRODUCTION

God forgive me, but I used to be so anti-gun that I donated to The Brady Campaign To Prevent Gun Violence. I know. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. Since that time, I’ve done a complete 180 and become a fervent gun supporter and a proud member of the NRA.

This change did not come about because I suddenly became a psychopathic killer, with guns as my weapon of choice. I do kill (spiders, fleas, and ticks) and I do eat dead bodies (cows, pigs, chicken, and fish), but I’m scarcely Hannibal Lecter.

Instead, my reversal on guns came about because I realized that gun’s are a predicate requirement for individual freedom and security. I’ve created five principles that justify this conclusion. These principles are: (1) Individuals bearing guns are the best defense against the world’s most dangerous killer: government; (2) I am a Jew; (3) I am not a racist; (4) a self-defended society is a safe society; and (5) the only way gun-control activists can support their position is to lie.

I develop each of these principles below.

II. ANALYSIS

A. Individuals Bearing Arms Are The Best Defense Against The World’s Most Dangerous Killer: Government.

1. DemProgs fear small digit murders by individuals; Second Amendment supporters fear murders in the millions by governments.

a. Mad or predatory individuals, ideologically motivated groups, and mean or careless corporations have never succeeded in using guns to achieve more than a few thousand deaths in any individual act.

DemProgs and conservatives alike share the same concerns: they don’t want killers to have guns. It’s just that DemProgs haven’t quite figured out who the real killers are. Their obsessive focus is on individuals and corporations. Let’s humor their fears and look at number of deaths those particular killers have achieved, beginning in the 20th century through to the present day.

Killers Without Guns:

The worst psychopathic individual mass murderer who did not use a gun: Gameel al-Batouti. On October 31, 1999, he cried out “Allahu Akbar” as he piloted a plane full of passengers into the Atlantic Ocean, killing 217 people.

The worst ideologically driven collective of mass murderers who did not use guns: The 19 al Qaeda members who, on September 11, 2001, used box cutters to hijack four planes, crashed those planes into three buildings and one into a field, and killed 2,996 people in a matter of hours.

The worst corporate mass murderer that did not use guns: In December 1984, the Union Carbide India Limited pesticide plant in Bhopal, India, accidentally released toxic gas from its facility, killing 3,787 people.

CONCLUSION: When dedicated mass murderers use something other than guns, they’re able to achieve deaths that range from a few hundreds dead to a few thousand dead.

Killers With Guns:

The worst psychopathic individual mass murderer who did use a gun: Anders Behring Breivik who, on July 22, 2011, shot and killed 69 people in Norway – mostly teenagers. This rampage came after he’d already set off a bomb, killing 8 people. Norway has strict gun control.

The worst ideologically driven collective mass murderers who did use guns: Given Islamists’ tendency to use all weapons available to shoot as many people as possible in as many countries as they can, this is a tough one to call. I believe, though, that the Mumbai terror attack in 2008 is the largest ideologically driven mass murder that relied solely on guns. Throughout the city of Mumbai, Islamic terrorists engaged in a coordinated attack that killed 154 people. Even the unbelievably bloody and shocking mall shooting that al Shabaab staged in Kenya killed only 63 people.

The worst corporate mass murder that did use guns: I can’t find any. To the extent that numerous workers died in any given 19th century labor dispute, those deaths occurred because state government, siding with management, sent out the state’s militia to disperse the strikers. For example, in November 1887, in Thibodaux, Louisiana, the state militia killed between 35 and 300 black sugar plantation strikers. The 20th and 21st century did not offer such examples.

CONCLUSION
: When individual killers or small groups of killers rely on guns, their effectiveness is limited, compared to those who use planes or bombs. In addition, corporations (outside of crazed Hollywood movies) drop out of the running entirely.

It’s clear that both individuals (singularly and collectively) and corporations can kill. However, even when given optimal killing situations (e.g., acts of terrorism or corporate negligence), the numbers stay in the low thousands – and sink even further when guns are involved.

DemProgs could conceivably argue that, once you start adding up small killing events (a murder here, a murder there), you’re going to find a lot of dead bodies piled around you. For example, if one adds up America’s annual murder statistics from 1960 through 2012, the total number of Americans killed in those 52 years is 914,191. (This number encompasses all murders, not just those with guns, but we’ll still use it as the most extreme illustration of Americans’ alleged propensity to violence.)

If we then engaged in the risible pretense that these numbers were stable for all 233 years of America’s existence (900,000 murdered citizens per every 50 years), we could claim that citizens of the most murderous nation in history (which is how DemProgs view their own country) would have managed to achieve only around 4,000,000 murders in 233 years, using all weapons available.

Wow! 4,000,000 murders in 233 years! No wonder that DemProgs are so desperate to keep guns out of their fellow citizens’ hands. To them, Americans are stone-cold killers, wholly capable of killing almost a million of each other in just 50 years.

b. The serious killers in the last century haven’t been individuals or small groups. The serious killers have been governments acting against unarmed (usually disarmed) citizens.

Enough of the silly numbers! Let’s talk now about the real killers of the 20th and 21st centuries: Governments killing their own people or engaging in genocidal attacks against specifically selected religious, cultural, or racial groups – all of them unarmed and defenseless.

Much more of this must-read piece at the link

In our non-Council category, the winner was Mark Steyn for The Unmaking of the American World submitted by Liberty’s Spirit. In it,he analyzes the psychological aspect of America’s retreat, and how the Left is bringing it about.

Here are this week’s full results. Only Simply Jews, still enjoying himself in Italy was unable to vote this week, and was not subject to the 2/3 vote penalty for not voting:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week! Don’t forget to tune in on Monday AM for this week’s Watcher’s Forum, as the Council and their invited guests take apart one of the provocative issues of the day and weigh in…don’t you dare miss it. And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!

Watcher’s Council Nominations: The Search For The Lost E-mails Edition

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Oh, the thrills and adventure…here’s our heroine, Lois Lerner using the dreaded, deadly hashtag. That’ll show them congress critters!

After hearing from the IRS that Lerner’s emails for the past two years mysteriously died in a hard drive crash, one of those congress critters, Darrell Issa, subpoenaed Lerner’s entire hard drive.

The IRS has already replied, saying well,you know, it was just sitting there not doing anything and we believe one of the guys, we can’t remember exactly who, took it home to use it as a boat anchor. But that didn’t work so good because it was too light, and it was too heavy to be a decent fishing sinker. So if we remember right, the story was that he cut it loose and threw it overboard and as far as we know it’s somewhere at the bottom of Chesapeake Bay. Or it might have happened when he took his boat down river to Virginia, no one’s really sure. Anyway, it’s not here anymore. We regret that we can’t be of more help, really we do.

This,I believe is what our grandfathers would have referred to as a real fish story.

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

This week’s contest is dedicated to kidnap victims Ya’akov Naftali (ben Rachel Devorah), Gilad Michael (ben Bat Galim), and Eyal (Ben Iris) Teshura. Please pray for their safe return.

Council News:

The Council In Action!!

* VA Right’s Tom White is on quite a roll after being one of the few political writers if not th eonly one to correctly predict Eric Cantor’s demise in his native Virginia! He’s been cited numerous places, was the subject of a laudatory article by NewsMax and was interviewed by, among other places, the Washington Post and The Columbia Journalism Review, and we’ll definitely have those links for you once they’re up.Council Akbar!!

This week, The MidKnight Review, Right Truth, The Pirate’s Cove and Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address ( which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor  by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out Wednesday morning

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members. while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have this week….

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!