Posts Tagged ‘Communism’

LinkSwarm for November 13, 2015

Friday, November 13th, 2015

The big story this week has been the Children of the Corn running amok in Missouri. I hope to have a longer piece on that by and by. In the meantime, enjoy your Friday LinkSwarm:

  • ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion is blowing holes in state budgets across the nation.
  • How the Clinton Foundation money-laundering machine works.
  • Maryland’s “bullet fingerprint” database cost $5 million to set up and maintain. Number of criminals caught by it? Zero. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • How much money each state is sending to the Presidential race. Texas is number one in SuperPAC money, and number two (behind California) in hard money.
  • Kurdish Pesh Merga forces retake Sinjar from the Islamic State.
  • China makes tiny under-reporting error on coal usage. Any by “tiny,” I mean “equal to entire U.S. coal use.” (Hat tip: Ace of Spades.)
  • Sell books critical of the Chinese government in Hong Kong? Prepare to be disappeared.
  • Secret Service agent arrested in child sex sting. The country is in the best of hands. (Hat tip: AceofSpadesHQ.)
  • Kafkatrap vs. Honeytrap. “If you are any kind of open-source leader or senior figure who is male, do not be alone with any female, ever, at a technical conference.”
  • Woman starts making documentary about Men’s Rights Movement. Funny things happens: When she starts making an actual, even-handed documentary, the funders who wanted a feminist hit piece drop her like a hot potato, but Kickstarter backers step up to the plate after a plug from Milo Yiannopoulos.
  • UT academic critics of open carry should step out of their ivory tower and take a look at the real world.
  • Dear Formula 1: If your race requires subsidies to survive in Austin, I’m happy to see you fold.
  • An inside-baseball look at the Ted Cruz super PAC ad buy that wasn’t.
  • Portugal Decides EU Mandates Trump Democracy

    Monday, October 26th, 2015

    Portugal has decided that EU economic mandates trump that pesky Democracy:

    Anibal Cavaco Silva, Portugal’s constitutional president, has refused to appoint a Left-wing coalition government even though it secured an absolute majority in the Portuguese parliament and won a mandate to smash the austerity regime bequeathed by the EU-IMF Troika.

    He deemed it too risky to let the Left Bloc or the Communists come close to power, insisting that conservatives should soldier on as a minority in order to satisfy Brussels and appease foreign financial markets.

    I’m not entirely unsympathetic to Silva’s plight. As in Greece, the anti-austerity movement is an economically illiterate coalition of looters who insist that the welfare state gravy train can never come to an end, ever, even when the country is dead broke. (Though note that author Ambrose Evans-Pritchard never once mentions “welfare state” in his piece.) Remember that Portugal has never practiced real austerity (cutting budget outlays to match receipts), never once having balanced its budget in the last decade. And if the commies (who are, thankfully, only a minority coalition partner) had actually promised to set up a dictatorship of the proletariat, I’d be cheering Silva’s intransigence.

    But Democracy is the theory that the people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard. If Portugal thinks they can take cues from Greece’s anti-austerity tantrum and somehow not get slapped down just as hard, let them try. And in fact the leftwing’s coalition’s promises “to abrogate the Lisbon Treaty, the Fiscal Compact, the Growth and Stability Pact, as well as to dismantle monetary union and take Portugal out of the euro” are entirely rational and in Portugal’s self-interest.

    The EU has always been an explicitly antidemocratic union, one designed to prevent mere voters from overruling their bureaucratic betters. The fact that this time they’re opposed by idiots who think they can keep voting themselves goodies from other people’s wallets doesn’t change the problem of the EU’s deficit of democracy.

    Two of modern Europe’s central foundations (a monetary union and a cradle-to-grave welfare state) are not only unsustainable, they are incompatible with each other, and corrosive to both stability and democracy. And the EU leaders have no idea what to do about it.

    Darth Vader Replaces Lenin in Ukraine

    Saturday, October 24th, 2015

    In Odessa: “A recent law banning Communist symbols in the country meant that a Soviet-era statue of Vladimir Lenin in Odessa needed to come down. Instead, the city opted to transform it into a monument to one of pop culture’s greatest villains: Darth Vader.”

    What’s the difference between Lenin and Darth Vader?

    One was a power-mad dictator who crushed the people’s freedom, ruthlessly put down rebellion, and brought death and destruction in his wake.

    The other was voiced by James Earl Jones.

    LinkSwarm for October 23, 2015

    Friday, October 23rd, 2015

    Another Friday, another LinkSwarm, heavy on Benghazi and Presidential race news:

  • Seven revelations from the Benghazi hearing.
  • You know who wasn’t happy about Hillary Clinton’s latest Benghazi testimony? The families of the Benghazi victims. Funny how that “absolute moral authority” the MSM bestowed on Cindy Sheehan doesn’t apply to families of the slain when they criticize Democrats…
  • China vs. the United States: a tale of two economies.
  • Longshot GOP Presidential contenders are running out of money. “Any burn rate over 100 percent is considered dangerous by campaign finance experts. Pataki’s was 226 percent, Graham 188, Paul 181, Jindal 144, Huckabee 110 and Santorum 101.”
  • Speaking of Presidential fundraising, here’s why Rick Perry had to drop out: “Perry spent more than a million dollars during the last reporting period – July through September – while raising only $252,000 in contributions. And the former Texas governor, who exited the race in mid-September, had only $45,000 cash on hand at the end.”
  • “When you vote in your first Presidential election, please remember which political party decided to make your lunchtimes a living Hell for a decade. Spoiler warning: it wasn’t the Republicans.”
  • Some people Hillary Clinton listed as endorsing Hillary Clinton have not, in fact, actually endorsed Hillary Clinton.
  • Ohio Senate race update: “Incumbent Rob Portman (R) raised almost eight million this year, with eleven million in the bank, while former governor Ted Strickland (D) raised about two and a half, with about a million and a half in the bank.”
  • Turkish opposition leader accuses Erdogan’s Islamist government of protecting the Islamic State.
  • Criticize Islam in your blog in Bangladesh? That’s an arresting.
  • Heh:

  • Alvin bond update: “Firm in cracked stadium debacle funds pro-bond propaganda.”
  • Texas Democratic trial lawyer Mikal Watts indicited over fraud related to the BP oil spill case.
  • Arthur Miller — Communist. (Hat tip: Ed Driscoll at Instapundit.)
  • Bernie Sanders is “paying” bloggers.
  • Emus on the loose in Round Rock.
  • LinkSwarm for September 29, 2015

    Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

    Another LinkSwarm. And if you’re live in Austin, don’t forget the meetup/blogshoot on October 10th.

  • Theory: The people flooding into Europe are innocent families of refugees fleeing war. Reality: “young men [heaving] rocks at the authorities and showing up on YouTube videos shouting Allahu Akbar.”
  • “There is something shallow and decadent about a pontiff who prioritizes “climate change” even as every last Christian is driven from the Archeparchy of Mosul. What will they say of such a pope? That he fiddled with the thermostat while Rome burned?”
  • If the illegal alien crisis threatens to collapse the EU, it wasn’t very strong to begin with, was it?
  • Why are liberals in love with radical Islam?

    One theory:

    I increasingly think the Democrat/Muslim union has to do with old-fashioned relativism. Democrats don’t actually believe that women’s rights and gay rights apply to everyone; white people: sure. Arabs? Well, who am I to judge? And Muslims know this.

    When Robby George is just dumbfounded as to why all these Muslims support the party of abortion on demand and gay marriage, the answer seems pretty clear to me: They’re supporting the party of abortion on demand and gay marriage for infidels


    I think the issue is more that they see Muslims as a new potential mascot group that they can champion and therefore obtain that cheap sense of moral superiority that comes with riding in like a white knight. I think a lot of liberal attitudes towards minorities aren’t actually based on the good of the minorities, but how good it makes the liberals feel to champion them. Muslims are (as of now) a tiny, insignificant minority. They’re mostly kinda swarthy, so the “it’s racism” meme is easily transferable, and a significant chunk of liberals loathe Christianity.

  • A map of worldwide Islamic State attacks.
  • In the little town of Bethlehem/Things have gotten quite scary/Islamists have gotten out and torched/the local monastery.
  • You might want to hold onto your hate for this shocking revelation: Hillary Clinton lied under oath about her secret e-mail server.
  • And polls show that Vice President Joe Biden is way, way more popular than Clinton.
  • Reminder: Hillary Clinton’s 2008 campaign started the “birther” movement.
  • Ten times John Boehner caved into liberals.
  • Pacifica radio station institutes socialist democracy and promptly starts to spiral down toward bankruptcy. (Hat tip: Powerline.)
  • Dealing drugs while on the DEA payroll? Automatic firing? Ha! Remember: Obama Administration. 14 day suspension.
  • Cobynite solutions belong in the realm of fantasy.” Keep in mind that I disagree with possibly three-quarters of the writer’s analysis, but still share his conclusion….
  • The World According to Xi Jinping. Sounds like a whole lot of vague platitudes…
  • “German Rheinmetall shows off 80 kilowatt naval combat laser with four 20 kw laser barrels.” Though until they can demonstrate the system through actual field testing, I wouldn’t get too excited.
  • How did I miss the fact that McGruff The Crime Dog is currently doing 16 years for possessing a marijuana grow operation and a grenade launcher?
  • “The left is why they leave the left”

    Friday, September 18th, 2015

    When you start grabbing a third pull quote from a piece is when you realize that it needs a post of its own. Such is the case with this Nick Cohen piece on why Jeremy Corbyn’s election has finally forced him to leave the left. Though centered on UK politics, much of it applies to the social justice warrior/victimhood identity politics left in this country as well.

    The shift of left-wing thought towards movements it would once have denounced as racist, imperialist and fascistic has been building for years. I come from a left-wing family, marched against Margaret Thatcher and was one of the first journalists to denounce New Labour’s embrace of corporate capitalism — and I don’t regret any of it. But slowly, too slowly I am ashamed to say, I began to notice that left-wing politics had turned rancid.


    The shift of left-wing thought towards movements it would once have denounced as racist, imperialist and fascistic has been building for years. I come from a left-wing family, marched against Margaret Thatcher and was one of the first journalists to denounce New Labour’s embrace of corporate capitalism — and I don’t regret any of it. But slowly, too slowly I am ashamed to say, I began to notice that left-wing politics had turned rancid.

    In 2007 I tried to make amends, and published What’s Left. If they were true to their professed principles, my book argued, modern leftists would search out secular forces in the Muslim world — Iranian and Arab feminists, say, Kurdish socialists or Muslim liberals struggling against reactionary clerics here in Britain — and embrace them as comrades. Instead, they preferred to excuse half the anti-western theocrats and dictators on the planet. As, in their quiet way, did many in the liberal mainstream. Throughout that period, I never heard the BBC demanding of ‘progressives’ how they could call themselves left-wing when they had not a word of comfort for the Iraqi and Afghan liberals al-Qaeda was slaughtering.

    The triumph of Jeremy Corbyn has led to What’s Left sales picking up, and readers acclaiming my alleged prescience. Grateful though I am, I cannot accept the compliment. I never imagined that left-wing politics would get as bad as they have become. I assumed that when the criminally irresponsible Blair flew off in his Learjet, the better angels of the left’s nature would re-assert themselves.

    What a fool I was.


    The fact remains that the Labour party has just endorsed an apologist for Putin’s imperial aggression; a man who did not just appear on the propaganda channel of Russia, which invades its neighbours and persecutes gays, but also of Iran, whose hangmen actually execute gays. Labour’s new leader sees a moral equivalence between 9/11 and the assassination of bin Laden, and associates with every variety of women-hating, queer-bashing, Jew-baiting jihadi, holocaust denier and 9/11 truther. His supporters know it, but they don’t care.


    The half-educated fanatics are in control now. I do not see how in conscience I can stay with their movement or vote for their party. I am not going to pretend the next time I meet Owen Jones or those Labour politicians who serve in Corbyn’s shadow cabinet that we are still members of the same happy family. There are differences that cannot and should not be smoothed over.

    I realise now what I should have known years ago. The causes I most care about — secularism, freedom of speech, universal human rights — are not their causes. Whatever they pretend, when the crunch comes, they will always put sectarian unity first, and find reasons to be elsewhere.

    Read the whole thing.

    (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)

    Jeremy Corbyn’s Shadow Cabinet Freakshow

    Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

    I know I should be talking about Trump or immigration or jihad, but fresh takes just aren’t occurring to me this morning. So instead, let’s just talk about newly minted Labour head Jeremy Corbyn’s freakshow of a shadow cabinet. (For those not conversant with UK political terms, the “shadow cabinet” is the cabinet of the opposition party (in this case Labour) which would (theoretically) take over if the Tories were to lose power over a no-confidence vote; since the Tories currently enjoy an absolute majority, it would take a pretty big political upheaval for this to happen before 2020.) Evidently it was quite difficult for Corbyn to even find Labour MPs willing to take positions in his shadow cabinet.

    A few choice examples:

  • Kerry McCarthy, shadow secretary of agriculture, is a hardcore vegan, and I’m sure her absolute opposition to meat will really help Labour win back not only the British butcher industry, but also the working class white voters that used to be Labour’s largest block of support. She’s also a supporter of homeopathic medicine.
  • The new Shadow Chancellor (finance minister) is John McDonnell, who openly states his desire to overthrow capitalism, wants to nationalize banks, praised the IRA for it’s bomb-setting and killing activity, and has fantasized about traveling back in time to assassinate Margaret Thatcher.
  • Shadow defense secretary Maria Eagle’s biggest issues seem to be gay rights and opposition to mink farming, neither of which tend to weigh heavily in defense policy.
  • Diane Abbott, shadow secretary of state for International Development, once said that “blonde, blue-eyed Finnish girls” at London hospitals were unsuitable as nurses because they had “never met a black person before” and that “white people love playing ‘divide & rule.'”
  • This isn’t just a “let’s have a laugh at the expense of the far left freaks” post (fun though that may be). To a large extent, personnel is policy, and this shows how quickly extreme left-wing/Social Justice Warrior ideas can take root at the center of a major political party if they have enough adherents in the overclass. Right now, there’s no shortage of Democratic Party activist who would love to make veganism the official policy of the United States government, and as Obama appointees have shown, would not let little things like “laws” (or the lack thereof) stand in the way of implementing their extremist policies were they be placed in a position of power.

    It can happen here…

    UK’s Labour Party Swerves Hard Left, Elects Jeremy Corbyn Head

    Saturday, September 12th, 2015

    UK’s Labour Party just just elected hard lefty Jeremy Corbyn as leader.

    How hard lefty? He makes Bernie Sanders look like Bob Dole:

    Nothing should detract from his record as an unreconstructed socialist peacenik. He is stridently anti-American and has declared himself a “friend” of Hamas and Hizbollah. Despite the growing belligerence of Russia, he is inclined to take the UK out of Nato and would scrap Britain’s independent nuclear deterrent. Of particular concern is his critical stance towards the EU. It is now far from certain that Labour will support continued UK membership of the bloc at the forthcoming referendum.

    On domestic policy, he lacks any credibility. He would nationalise Britain’s railways and utilities and remove the private sector from public services. Despite his claim to green credentials, he has pledged in the past to reopen the UK’s coal mines. He toys with forcing the Bank of England to underwrite deficit financing for any purpose, regardless of the effect on inflation. Under Mr Corbyn, Labour will, in the words of one party MP, become a “1980s Trotskyist tribute act.”

    Now the question becomes: Which party replaces Labour as the main opposition to the Tories in 2020, SNP or UKIP?

    For Labor Day Weekend: A Look Back At Solidarity

    Friday, September 4th, 2015

    For Labor Day weekend, here’s a look back at the birth of Solidarity in Poland.

    Robert Conquest, RIP

    Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

    Robert Conquest, one of the leading historians of Soviet genocide, has died at age 98.

    It’s hard to remember now, but for most of the Cold War, western liberals vehemently denied that genocide had occurred in the Soviet Union (or other communist nations) at all. Conquest’s The Great Terror helped crack that facade of willful ignorance, as did Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s monumental The Gulag Archipelago.

    I once reviewed The Harvest of Sorrow, his work on the Holodomor, Stalin’s terror famine in the Ukraine, and it’s a devastating, amazingly well-researched book. “In the actions here recorded about 20 human lives were lost, not for every word, but for every letter, in this book.”

    He was also a poet, and dabbled in science fiction as a writer and editor, but it was as a historian he made far and away his greatest impact. Communism was the great evil of the 20th century, and Conquest had a key role in exposing it. “Over all, Mr. Conquest estimated the death toll for the entire Stalin era at no less than 20 million.”

    Here’s an obituary from The Telegraph. “Conquest personified the truth that there was no anti-communist so dedicated as an ex-communist.”

    Here’s Christopher Hitchens’ essay on Conquest from 2007.