Why Trump.

Tucker Carlson explains what Republicans have missed about Trump. It’s a great article, less for saying things that are new to most of us, and more because one hopes that “establishment” Republicans will read it. I’m guessing Trump hopes his challengers won’t read it until after the primaries.

Consider the conservative nonprofit establishment, which seems to employ most right-of-center adults in Washington. Over the past 40 years, how much donated money have all those think tanks and foundations consumed? Billions, certainly. (Someone better at math and less prone to melancholy should probably figure out the precise number.) Has America become more conservative over that same period? Come on. Most of that cash went to self-perpetuation: Salaries, bonuses, retirement funds, medical, dental, lunches, car services, leases on high-end office space, retreats in Mexico, more fundraising. Unless you were the direct beneficiary of any of that, you’d have to consider it wasted.

Pretty embarrassing. And yet they’re not embarrassed. Many of those same overpaid, underperforming tax-exempt sinecure-holders are now demanding that Trump be stopped. Why? Because, as his critics have noted in a rising chorus of hysteria, Trump represents “an existential threat to conservatism.”

Let that sink in. Conservative voters are being scolded for supporting a candidate they consider conservative because it would be bad for conservatism? And by the way, the people doing the scolding? They’re the ones who’ve been advocating for open borders, and nation-building in countries whose populations hate us, and trade deals that eliminated jobs while enriching their donors, all while implicitly mocking the base for its worries about abortion and gay marriage and the pace of demographic change. Now they’re telling their voters to shut up and obey, and if they don’t, they’re liberal.

I can argue with many of the things Trump says. I’ve winced at so much. But I like Trump on an emotional level. I understand the fear about him, and why Ted Cruz could probably be the better president (assuming he could win the general election). I do like the others in different ways, including Jeb Bush. But all except Trump understood what the people wanted and needed. Cruz saw it, too, but not as sharply. Rubio, too, albeit too late.

As Carson cited, National Review is trying to stop Trump. But to do that, they need to recognize why people needed Trump. Instead they get David Boaz echoing the “racism” slander. Had they read Jonah Goldberg (ironically, in National Review), they might have known that people don’t take weak racism allegations seriously anymore. There have been too many lies.

Boaz aside, much of what they say is true. Some of these are serious — to an extent. Andrew McCarthy is correct that Trump isn’t as well-versed on the intricacies of terror as he should be. Others have pointed out that we need more than words, which is also true. But Trump is a brilliant man, and I do not believe he’d really “shoot from the hip” as Thomas Sowell fears.

Trump is clearly smart enough to manage several large projects at the same time. That’s what we need here. More would be better, but our options are limited. The President won’t be making the decision on which weapons will be used in tactical engagements anyway — unless it’s to limit them, which any Democrat (too many Republicans) would do. We’ll be lucky to get someone as smart as Trump, with the experience he has, who still understands the anger, and who might finally be willing to do something about it.


The cost of kindness

From Breitbart London, German dentists are warning the obvious: fixing the migrants’ teeth will cost billions.

That’s the least of their problems. General health care will also cost a huge amount. Europeans will also pay in less access to their own health care.

Sympathy for refugees ratcheted up last year by a photo of a boy lying dead on a beach. That boy made the trip with his father, who wanted to go to Europe to see a dentist.

I am very sympathetic to the cause of all decent migrants trying to escape the hellholes they live in. But I also recognize that neither we nor the Europeans can afford this. People who think we can really have no idea.

Minor Gitmo news

There’s news of two supposed revelations of horrors at Guantanamo’s detention camp.

No, not really new news.

First, we have an MI5 officer ready to testify to having witnessed “torture” at Guantanamo. I first spotted this at The Sunday Times, but it requires a subscription I don’t have.

Other British newspapers followed, including the Telegraph, but only the Times says when it allegedly happened: December 2002.

Well, as is already known (and in my book, Guantanamo Clarity), that’s when most of the roughest techiques were authorized there. For about six weeks, some detainees had their beards shaved off and had to listen to music they didn’t like. Only one detainee had actual sleep deprivation then (four hours per night; Gitmo never had the long durations, as the CIA did at black sites). The air conditioning might have been turned up, or off, but no more than the guards and interrogators could handle, as they had to live with it, too. And neither the Army nor the Navy did waterboarding.

If I had to guess, I’d say he’s talking about Mohammed al-Qahtani (ISN 63). He’s the only one who got the really roughest stuff at Guantanamo. But he’s old news. Maybe this MI5 officer just wants to write a book. We’ll watch this with interest.

FYI: (Qahtani’s records are here.)

The second news is more of the same old stuff. Former soldier Joseph Hickman had been claiming for years that the detainee suicides of June 2006 were staged. He was a guard that night at the gate when a van used for ferrying detainees left the building and went in the direction of Camp 7. To the Gitmo-haters, that can only mean the game is afoot.

Some people put two and two together and get four, while others must get out their old calculus textbooks.

Hickman decided to pursue this, and it turned into an award-winning story (for someone else). The Weekly Standard did a good job taking it down.

Guantanamo had so many attempted suicides over the years. Until that time, they’ve always been stopped by the watchful guard force. What’s really funny is how America’s critics generally blamed these attempts on immense sadness over indefinite detention — although, let’s face it, too many had already been released by then. They insist that the detainees should be permitted to kill themselves if they want to, as in their hunger strikes.

Then, as soon as any do manage to kill themselves, the very same people who claim it’s natural to prefer suicide, will suddenly find reasons to pretend that the few genuine suicides that succeeded were not actually suicides at all. They were, they claim, murder. Naturally, Hickman himself says that he believes the later suicides were probably murder as well.

None of that is new. Hickman’s book was published last year by Simon and Shuster. A trade size edition will be out in February. Some people will buy anything.

What is new is that Hickman now has an interview in RT.com, a.k.a. Russia Today. This is the Russian government’s English language propaganda website. Iran’s own PressTV.ir has a note on the interview, but not yet an actual interview of their own. I wonder how long it will be before Hickman makes a call there.

All socialists are totalitarians

Sorry, but it’s true.

Bernie Sanders hates the Citizens United Supreme Court decision. It held that groups of people, in this case organized as a corporation named Citizens United, have the freedom of speech. The case was specifically about whether the government should have the power to censor a movie about a politician just before an election.

The Court decided that, of course politicians cannot censor movies for political purposes. Democrats were furious. Socialists, too. Whereas individuals have freedom of speech (until these politicians say otherwise), they insist that groups of people formed as corporations do not. They vow that future Supreme Court Justices will reverse that decision.

Nothing new about that. Then Bernie Sanders slipped and said his Supreme Court nominees will reverse that decision as “one of their first decisions.” He said this as to imagine that judges are like executives setting an agenda. But it doesn’t work that way. Judges are supposed to decide cases brought before them.

Ann Althouse brings us a post on the general naivete, including a link from ThinkProgress having recognized the gaffe.

ThinkProgress is from the Center for American Progress, which is a left-wing version of Heritage.

I can just imagine if Trump had said this. It’s ironic that people say Trump is unqualified because of a supposed lack of government experience even though his position required considerable dealing with all levels of government. Sanders has been a Senator for ages, having actually voted for a number of Supreme Court nominations over the years, and he seems to be clueless.

But the truth is, Sanders didn’t need to know all that much about the Court to do his job. He’s primarily a rabble-rouser. The one who does need to know how the government works is Trump.

Chickens coming home to roost

More thoughts on Cologne…

Radical Islam is ascendant: The very people who oppose the War on Terror, and still remain eager to spread lies about it, are now among the victims in Cologne.

I do understand that I’m making generalizations here, but the number of victims is large, and let’s face it, we are talking about Europe. Hating Guantanamo and the War on Terror were among of the ways that the Euroleft likes to strut their social consciousness without it costing anything. That is, until now. The bill is due.

Yes, I know that some will want to imagine that the outrages in Cologne and elsewhere wouldn’t be, if only we hadn’t invaded Iraq almost thirteen years ago. But the people saying that are the same ones who initially supported the President who encouraged Iranian aggression, allowed turmoil in Egypt, bombed Libya and Syria without Congressional authorization, lost Iraq, and doesn’t seem to care if we lose Afghanistan.

Remember “Bring Back Our Girls”? How well did that work? It showed weakness. It doesn’t end here.

A flyer for migrants with instructions on common decency is making the rounds online, including via ZeroHedge. (It’s amusing to be seeing this from Guantanamo opponents, but the right also has its share from that crowd. And to be clear, the isolationists didn’t open the gates.)

Those European bureaucrats who make those flyers are acting like those refugees simply need to be taught proper manners. Real innocent refugees should feel insulted, to the extent that some had managed to get to Europe without being thrown into the Med by the others.

It doesn’t have to be this way, but it is. How many recruits would ISIS be getting if they didn’t portray themselves as winning?

Imagine if ISIS was in tatters, the rubble of its cities smoking, Al Qaeda truly on the run, Guantanamo unapologetically packed with prisoners, and a Europe able to recognize which side is evil. Assuming there were still refugees streaming into Europe, does anyone really think those men wouldn’t be on their best behavior? They’d know better. They’re savages, but not stupid.

When it comes to barbarians, there are two alternatives to a real war: Strength or submission. There are no peace movements working on another path.

And lest you think it’s only Europe that thinks they can advance “peace” by being nice to our enemies, this was Seattle in 2007:

Demonstrators: Victory to the Iraqi Resistance
Anti-war march, Seattle, Washington, 2007

It is either fight, or raise the drawbridge. Don’t let any peace activist tell you otherwise.


I learned a new word today: “Taharrush”

Thanks to Geert Wilders and Machiel de Graaf at the indispensable Gatestone Institute (and Roger Simon via Glenn Reynolds), I now know that “Taharrush is the Arabic word for the phenomenon whereby women are encircled by groups of men and sexually harassed, assaulted, groped, raped.”

In other words, what happened in Cologne wasn’t just a freak incident. It was a barbaric custom that goes way back. It is a custom the West is importing, and that many European governments have signaled will now be tolerated.

The word itself shouldn’t exist, but it does. As Wilders and de Graaf say, “The existence of the word indicates that the phenomenon is widespread. Frau Merkel, Prime Minister Rutte and all the other open-door politicians could and should have known this.”

A lot of people don’t like Geert Wilders. I have to understand that a little bit since I’d rather not have known what taharrush was either.

I’ll have more on this topic later.

Wisconsin spying

We see from Wisconsin Watchdog that conservatives had just learned that they’d been under surveillance by the government, which had been reading his emails all this time. (Hat tip: Glenn Reynolds.)

“Just unbelievable,” said the conservative, who asked not to be identified. He remains active in Wisconsin politics. “It feels like a different country. It feels like something that shouldn’t be done in the United States of America.”

That’s right. This is what we should be doing to jihadists. But many of the same left-wingers who oppose surveillance of jihadists during a war are just fine with domestic spying for partisan reasons when the target is a conservative. I’m sure that most liberals, if cornered, will argue that they didn’t agree with this either, but the harassment has been going on for a while, and they’ve been largely silent.

It’s the type of thing one would expect under a ruler like Hugo Chavez, another favorite of the left.

They do like this kind of stuff.