Mind your business.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

California bill to mandate STD vaccine for sixth grade girls moves forward

Gardasil, a controversial vaccine for the sexually transmitted HPV virus, might soon be given to minors in California without parental consent if the sweeping proposal in a new bill-- AB 499-- becomes law after a Senate vote this week and a signature from Gov. Brown.

Read all the gory details at my latest CAIVN piece.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

More Conservative Voices Lauding Ron Paul

Last week, when I published a list of videos of ten major conservative voices saying great things about Ron Paul, one commenter didn't like that I included Rand Paul in the list, saying: "His son agrees with him? Were you just looking for a tenth person and threw that in there hoping no one would notice?"

I kinda definitely already addressed that in the article:

"Okay fair enough... this one's obvious. Though while possibly nepotistic, Rand Paul's endorsement of his father is also clearly grounded in their shared philosophy of Constitutional Conservatism and their principled application of it to law. It also carries weight as Rand Paul is one of the most visible leaders and successful candidates from the Tea Party movement in 2010."

But just to be clear, I certainly wasn't scraping the bottom of the barrel for a tenth conservative figure to include on the list. There were a lot of other voices I could have added, including Ronald Reagan, who made an official endorsement of Ron Paul during a congressional race in the eighties-- the only Reagan endorsement of any of today's GOP candidates. I just didn't include it because there's no video of him speaking the words, so it didn't fit with the rest of the post.

But here's what Ronald Reagan said:
(it's at the end of the ad)

In addition to Reagan, here are two more videos of respected conservatives saying great things about Ron Paul. I chose Rand Paul because he is a very respected conservative, and one of the most visible leaders of the Tea Party movement in Washington. If his father doesn't, I certainly believe that Rand Paul eventually will become president.

Anyways, here's Neil Cavuto:

"Congressman, you're a genius... you've been on with me so often... you could practically be my co-anchor."

And Joe Scarborough:

"When you hear him talk, he's an extremely impressive man... he's brilliant, and he practices what he preaches."

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Rudy Giuliani Gets Paid to Lobby for Terrorists

Seriously. The Huffington Post has the details:

It is not hard to imagine how Americans would react if they learned that Al Qaeda had hired top lobbyists to help promote its agenda in Congress. Or if they heard that influential active and retired government officials were being paid to attest to Hezbollah's good character. They would be appalled.

But, amazingly, a group similar to Al Qaeda and Hezbollah is doing just that. It is the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), an Iranian exile group that is on the Department of State's list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations alongside other more prominent groups such Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas, and Al-Shabaab.

The MEK wants to be removed from the terrorist list because, by law, its presence there prevents it from directly promoting its agenda in Washington, and most importantly, from fundraising. So it has recruited some of officialdom's biggest names to convince Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to "delist" MEK and free it from the current limitations on its activities. News reports predict that Clinton is seriously considering the move and will make a decision by month's end.

According to the New York Times, among the "luminaries" promoting "delisting" are former New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani; former Vermont governor Howard Dean; former NATO commander Wesley K. Clark, President Obama's former national security adviser Gen. James Jones; former F.B.I. director, Louis Freeh; former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson; former attorney general Michael B. Mukasey; and Lee H. Hamilton, the former congressman who was co-chairman of the 9/11 Commission. The Times report notes that the MEK endorsers are paid handsome sums (up to $100,000) for speaking out in its behalf.

We already learned last week that Sen. John McCain pushed hard to arm the Libyan government barely two years before he supported sending our military to get shot at with the weapons he wanted to give Gaddafi's government. Now Giuliani. How do these people get a reputation as "strong on defense" again?

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Monday, August 29, 2011

Washington's Chicken Shenanigans

You won't believe the government's latest feather-brained idea to subsidize agriculture and create distortions in the marketplace (actually, if you read this website with any degree of regularly, you totally will believe it!).

Meg Duffield of the Silver Circle movie has the details.

...and I've got a funny chicken fight video from Family Guy:

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Al Qaeda’s No. 2 Killed Over The Weekend

The New York Times reports:

"A drone operated by the Central Intelligence Agency killed Al Qaeda’s second-ranking figure in the mountains of Pakistan on Monday, American and Pakistani officials said Saturday, further damaging a terrorism network that appears significantly weakened since the death of Osama bin Laden in May."

So we have killed or captured Number 1 and Number 2 (and most of the other numbers)... can we finally declare victory and come home?

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

It's Time to Declare Victory in the War on Terror

Ten years after the tragic events of 9-11, it's time for America to declare victory in the War on Terror. With Osama bin Laden dead, Al Qaeda destroyed, and our objectives accomplished, it's time to bring America's brave young men and women home to a hero's welcome-- not because we have lost, but because we have won, not because we are weak, but because we have shown the world our resolve and our strength.

The mission creep and other difficulties in the Middle East over recent years are not an indication of American defeat, but a clear sign that our military is struggling to find new objectives after successfully accomplishing the mission Congress gave our President in the aftermath of 9-11:

" use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001..."

It has been done. Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda's leadership have been captured or killed, their funds have been frozen, their cells have been disrupted, their network has been destroyed, and their numbers have been erased, leaving only a haggard and defeated remnant, hiding in the hills and caves of Pakistan.

Many patriotic Americans believe that to cut and run by withdrawing from the Middle East in shame and defeat would be cowardly, irresponsible, and negligent of our government's duty to protect the American people from foreign enemies.

But to leave our troops in harm's way overseas after soundly defeating our enemies as America has clearly done, would certainly also be cowardly, irresponsible, and negligent of the sacrifices our brave soldiers have made to keep us safe.

Remaining overseas to fight foreign civil wars, quell insurrections, and direct the affairs of a foreign people does not serve America's interests nor make us more safe. Instead, such a policy would play right into the hands of the terrorists who attacked us on 9-11.

The method of cowards like Osama bin Laden is not to win a conventional war by honorable means in direct conflict with their adversary's military, but to use civilian deaths to terrorize a militarily superior nation into fighting a protracted overseas conflict that will demoralize and bankrupt it.

Thanks to our brave troops, Osama bin Laden and his organization will never be able to terrorize the American people again.

But our victory will ring hollow if we give him exactly what he wanted, and leave our troops overseas in harm's way for another decade, while treating our own citizens at home like terrorists every time they want to fly a plane, meanwhile spending our struggling economy into deeper debt, recession, and bankruptcy.

In order to make America's victory complete and final, let us declare it openly and suit action to words, bringing our military home to defend America's borders instead of foreign borders, to protect our people instead of policing another people's streets, and to go to work again in private sector jobs to produce wealth and grow our economy at home using the discipline and skills they learned in their nation's service overseas.

We have let the terrorists monopolize our thoughts, energies, and fears for too long. Now that they are gone, it is time to live our lives free of terror. We can lose no time in relegating them to the history books as villains where they belong, and turning our attention back to building our great nation and prospering again. America has won the War on Terror.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

A Bit of Shameless Self-Promotion

I normally loathe this sort of self-promotion but I'd probably be remiss if I didn't at least say something here. [Editor's note: and I had to encourage him to promote this and you are definitely encouraged to help Carl's alternative voice reach thousands of mainstream readers per the details below! -W-]

Several weeks ago I entered a column writing contest for The Tennessean newspaper and I am one of eight finalists. I submitted two articles and this contribution on Mormons and the GOP ran in Friday's Tennessean. (Note: I did NOT pick the title and I believe my other article on the debt ceiling was better but it is outdated).

The grand prize is an 8-week column in The Tennessean and if you think an independent voice cutting through the usual Red vs. Blue noise in a major daily newspaper would be good, even for only 2 months, please vote here.

Come on! Let's spam the vote Ron Paul style!

Carl Wicklander,
Regular Columnist, THL
Articles Author's Page Website

The Ron Paul Story

Over at the paleoconservative Chronicles magazine website, Dr. Thomas Fleming has a very sober take on Ron Paul's presidential run. He very concisely sums up the corruption of the political and media classes and why Ron Paul has been ignored in the mainstream media.

Here's the crux of the article:

"[Ron Paul] is being ignored because unlike every other candidate of either party in the field, he is issuing a fundamental challenge to the regime. Rick Perry, for all his insincere secession and God talk, is the lackey of the regime who led the Al Gore campaign in Texas. Michelle Bachmann does not simply look like the deer in the headlights: she Is the deer in the headlights. And if anyone is going to oppose the establishment, it won’t be a wealthy member of the Romney clan. . . .

"Ron Paul probably cannot win, but he can make the voters begin to think or least to wonder if it is possible to confront the truth and give up the fantasies of equality that underly the American ideology, the self-evident lies both parties tell in order to maintain their power-shared control of 300 million people."

Chronicles is the most uncompromising and politically incorrect magazine I've ever come across and I'm proud to be a subscriber. The paleocons of the Chronicles variety are not always allies of libertarians, particularly on immigration, but it is one of the most honest political journals out there.

I urge you to read the rest of Fleming's article. It's well worth it.

Carl Wicklander,
Regular Columnist, THL
Articles Author's Page Website

Saturday, August 27, 2011

What happens when John McCain kisses a baby

Earlier this week, hundreds of you got a major kick out of the photo I posted of Ron Paul being kissed by a baby:

So I figured I'd end the week by tying it all up in a neat little knot and providing a picture of what happens when an establishment candidate tries to kiss a baby on the campaign trial. It's not pretty:

...and it literally makes me laugh out loud the longer I look at it. It's just too perfect.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

John McCain pushed to arm Gaddafi in 2009!

Could it get any more stupid than this? A new Wikileaks cable reveals that before he pushed hard for war this year against Gaddafi's regime in Libya (by actually aiding Al Qaeda forces among the Libyan rebels with U.S. airpower ....yeah), Senator John McCain was the dominant congressional voice in pushing for military aid to Gaddafi in the form of providing lethal and non-lethal U.S. military equipment.

The Politico reports:

A leaked U.S. diplomatic cable shows that Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain promised to help Libyan dictator Muammar Qadhafi obtain U.S. military hardware in 2009.

The cable, released by the open information group WikiLeaks, reveals the pledge came at meeting that was attended by other prominent members of Congress, including Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.).

In the meeting, Muatassim Qadhafi, the Libyan leader’s fifth son and national security adviser, requested U.S. assistance in obtaining military supplies, both lethal and non-lethal.

The cable indicates that McCain was the dominant voice among the congressional delegation in a push for military hardware for Qadhafi.

“Sen. McCain assured Muatassim that the United States wanted to provide Libya with the equipment it needs for its … security,” according to the cable.

McCain said that he understood the need for Libya to upgrade its existing ranks of C-130 Hercules aircraft. Libya had bought eight of the military cargo aircraft in the 1970s, but as bilateral relationships with the United States deteriorated, a ban of arms sales prevented the aircraft from being moved to North Africa. McCain pledged to do what he could to move the issue forward in Congress.

So let me get this straight: In America, good, conservative, patriots-- like John McCain, of course-- support arming America's enemies and then sending our brave young men and women to go get shot with weapons we helped give the other side??

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Rasmussen Poll: Ron Paul Leads Obama by 10% Among Independents

Rasmussen reports:

"Paul, whose long run afoul of the GOP establishment with his libertarian policy prescriptions, picks up 61% of the Republican vote, while 78% of Democrats fall in behind the president. Voters not affiliated with either of the major political parties prefer the longtime congressman by 10 points – 43% to 33%."

Hmmm. Independents heart Ron Paul.

Time to send in the real maverick.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Rick Perry, The Phony Conservative

Conor Murphy writes:

Even before Rick Perry entered the race for President, he was a top contender. In the latest Gallup poll he has surpassed Mitt Romney and is now seen as the candidate with the best record on jobs, taxes and the economy. But is Governor Perry the real deal? If one ignores Perry's campaign website and checks the facts, it is clear that the governor of Texas does not have a very sparkling record.

Read the rest of the article at The Washington Times.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Rick Perry = George W. Bush [Pic]

Saw this on Facebook. Made me smile wince. I would attribute somebody for making it, but there's no indication on the picture. Feel free to speak up in the comments if you know who made this.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Friday, August 26, 2011

Tom Woods Refutes the Smears

This is good stuff, folks: Tom Woods dismantles Jeffrey Lord's August 23, 2011 American Spectator article "Ron Paul and the Neoliberal Reeducation Campaign."

Hat tip: The Daily Paul

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

TIME Calls Ron Paul "The Prophet"

Alex Altman writes in a TIME article entitled "The Prophet":

"Twilight descends in new Hampshire as an old man climbs onto his soapbox. LIBERTY: TOO BIG TO FAIL reads a banner hanging in the jam-packed tent. He is hardly a commanding figure, but a thousand people chant his name and lean in to listen, ready to follow, as Ron Paul delivers his genre-bending stump speech. There are no focus-grouped slogans, no empty calories: Paul's talk is more like a high-fiber graduate seminar on economic theory, forgotten history and the nooks and crannies of the U.S. Constitution."

The mainstream coverage is certainly encouraging, and the little blurb above does have some flattering words for Ron Paul, but do be cautious about mainstream coverage (not-so-)subtly insinuating that Ron Paul's revolution is some kind of cult. It's not accurate and it's not relevant.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

From Libya to Iran

Hey, if you missed Carl's excellent piece on Libya here at THL yesterday, check it out today at Young Americans for Liberty, and learn what lesson Obama just inadvertently taught Iran about dealing with the United States.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

George Will on Conservatism and Nation Building Overseas: Quote of the Month!

"And conservatism seems to be saying government can’t run Amtrak, but it can run the Middle East." -George Will

Exactly! If conservatives don't believe government can possibly run Amtrak, public radio, Fannie Mae, food stamp programs, or the American health care system with any level of efficiency or success, what on earth has possessed them for the last decade to believe that the government could possibly have any success running the Middle East?

Got this quote from an excellent op ed by Jack Hunter entitled, "Was Bill Buckley a foreign policy leftist?"

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Steve Jobs: America's Greatest "Failure"

Nick Schulz has a great lesson for us at National Review Online, drawing from the failures and successes of Steve Jobs, who recently stepped down as CEO of Apple:

Lots of digital ink will be spilled about Jobs in the coming days, most of it focusing on his truly marvelous successes.

It’s better to focus on his failures.

Jobs failed better than anyone else in Silicon Valley, maybe better than anyone in corporate America. By that I mean Jobs did what only the greatest entrepreneurs can do: learn from their failures. I don’t mean learn from their mistakes. I mean learn from their abject, humiliating, bonehead, epic fails.

Everyone today thinks of Jobs as the genius who gave us the iPod, MacBooks, the iTunes store, the iPhone, the iPad, and so on. Yes, he transformed personal computing and multimedia. But let’s not forget what else Jobs did.

Jobs (along with Steve Wozniak) brought us the Apple I and Apple II computers, early iterations of which sold in the mere hundreds and were complete failures. Not until the floppy disk was introduced and sufficient RAM added did the Apple II take off as a successful product.

Jobs was the architect of Lisa, introduced in the early 1980s. You remember Lisa, don’t you? Of course you don’t. But this computer — which cost tens of millions of dollars to develop — was another epic fail.


There’s a moral here for a Washington culture that fears failure too much. In today’s Washington, large banks aren’t permitted to fail; nor are large auto firms. Next up will be too-big-to-fail hospital systems. Steve Jobs is a reminder that failure is a good and necessary thing. And that sometimes the greatest glories are born of catastrophe.

Steve Jobs, your great work and visionary personality will be missed at Apple, I am sure! You've been an inspiration to me for years now and I will follow your example by building on my failures and persevering until I succeed.

To your health!

Pirates of Silicon Valley - Intro

Creepy! Bizarre photo album of Condi Rice found in Gaddafi's compound

I thought America's "enemies" were supposed to hate us, not be infatuated with our Secretaries of State! As Libyan rebels seized Gaddafi's Bab al-Aziziya compound, they made an odd discovery:

“Deeply bizarre and deeply creepy.”

That’s how the State Department is describing a surprising find inside the compound of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi: a photo album with pictures of Condoleezza Rice.

Rebel fighters who ransacked Gadhafi's Bab al-Aziziya compound have been turning up some bizarre loot, including the Libyan leader's eccentric fashion accessories and his daughter's golden mermaid couch. The latest discovery is a photo album filled with page after page of pictures of Rice, the former secretary of state who visited Tripoli in 2008.


Though maybe the discovery isn't that surprising. Over the years, the Libyan leader's comments and actions related to the former secretary of state have raised a few eyebrows.

Consider how he talked about her in an interview with Al-Jazeera television in 2007, where he hinted that then-President George W. Bush's top diplomat wielded considerable influence in the Arab world.

"I support my darling black African woman," he said. "I admire and am very proud of the way she leans back and gives orders to the Arab leaders. ... Leezza, Leezza, Leezza. ... I love her very much. I admire her, and I'm proud of her, because she's a black woman of African origin."


Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Gaddafi Runs and Iran Watches

Even as it appears that Moammar Gaddafi is on the run, there are still numerous potential setbacks in the future of Libya.

Who will comprise the leadership of the new government? Will the different tribes that were unified in rebellion continue to work together or will a new civil war erupt over control of the county? Will there be a strong central government that will have to be propped up by the West? Will Libya partition itself into its traditional provinces based on tribal loyalty?

The end of Gaddafi’s reign in Libya marks both the end and the beginning. It’s the end for the former “Mad Dog of the Middle East,” the beginning of what will inevitably become another nation-building effort, and the fate of Libya portends a perilous future for the United States.

When American intervention began in March, I wrote:

“[t]he UN Security Council resolution only authorizes that there may be ‘all necessary measures’ to ‘protect Libyan citizens.’ If the Authorization for Use of Military Force legislation of 2001 was a blank check for President Bush, then what is this? Just what does ‘all necessary measures’ to ‘protect Libyan citizens’ mean? . . .

“By intervening in the first place, Obama has assured that the only possible outcome of this conflict means Gaddafi is dethroned. . . .

“Why intervene on the side of the rebels unless it is to see them to victory? And if we take them across the finish line, how then does the new government in a fragile, fractious country operate unless it is propped up? What of Gaddafi's fighters? As students of history should know, the losers in a civil war do not often lay down all their weapons and celebrate the peace when the war is declared ‘over.’"

The variables in a post-revolutionary country like Libya are daunting to consider. Tribal rivalries and vengeance against Gaddafi’s loyalists virtually guarantee gruesome bloodletting. But there is also a wider consequence of the Libyan adventure.

May we safely assume the regime in Tehran is paying attention to what’s happening in Libya? What would they have to learn from this?

Moammar Gaddafi, a long-time pariah of the United States, abandons terrorism and relinquishes his weapons of mass destruction in late 2003. President Bush removed Libya from the list of state sponsors of terror and President Obama shook hands with the dictator in 2009. For his latter day cooperation with the United States, Gaddafi was rewarded by being run out of Libya thanks to American air power.

What Iran will learn from this is that the Americans cannot be trusted when it comes to nuclear arms deals. In March, when Western intervention began, terrorism analyst Paul Pillar wrote:

“The lesson that the mullahs in Tehran and others will draw is that it would be useless to reach any agreement with the West about terrorism or nuclear weapons because the West is really interested above all in regime change and, regardless of any agreements that may have been reached, will seize the first opportunity that comes along to try to realize that goal.”

At the recent presidential debate in Ames, Congressman Ron Paul and former senator Rick Santorum waged a verbal war about what to do with Iran and their intent to acquire a nuclear weapon. Citing the fact that nearly all of Iran’s neighbors have nuclear weapons, Paul simply explained that Iran has strategic and practical interests in obtaining a weapon of their own.

Seeing what Gaddafi got for relinquishing his weapons gives Iran all the reason it needs to either re-start its nuclear program or push harder for an arsenal. If this happens, we can certainly expect the drumbeats for war to bang louder.

The mullahs see that regimes like Gaddafi’s gave Washington everything it wanted and still got taken out. If this is how Washington treats its newfound friends, how will they treat a regime with whom they are still openly antagonistic?

The road to hell may be paved with good intentions but the road to war with Iran may have begun in Libya.

Carl Wicklander,
Regular Columnist, THL
Articles | Author's Page | Website

Ron Paul, a Truly Dangerous Man

"Paul is dangerous to the status quo. And that's a reason not to ignore him." So said John Kass, a columnist at the Chicago Tribune, in a piece which appeared in Sunday's paper.

Many of you who don't get the Tribune missed his comments. But since his column is one of the few things in the "Trib" worth reading, no one could be blamed for not subscribing to it. I often wonder why I do.

The article is worth your time for a few reasons, but the most compelling of them is that Kass goes where most journalists refuse to go. He actually covers a story that only is a story because of the purposeful manner by which it is being ignored by the vast majority of the media. Heck, even lefty comedians pretending to be journalists (John Stewart) have noticed the "ignoramuses"' cover-up attempts.

It's amazing that "journalists" who see stories in almost everything that isn't important, can resist the temptation to write about a trend that definitely is a story. I suspect it's because they find it unsettling to their worldview. After paying so much lip service to "change" that wasn't, they seem terrified at the prospect of actual change.

And "status quoers" at both ends of the political spectrum have good reasons to be afraid. If Ron Paul or someone like him gets elected, they will lose the power they have, to ideas, instead of merely to other people. And power lost to ideas is decidedly more difficult to regain. Just look how many hundreds of years it took to destroy the constitution and the ideas behind it.

To have it back (as it was written) would end their power to meddle in even the most minute details of our lives for the rest of their lives. So the stakes are high, and the political poker game may be down to the last bet. In ignoring Ron Paul and his ideas they are trying to put on their best poker face.

It's a helluva way to go "all in." But it may be their best strategy.

Be sure to read Kass' column, it can be found here.

By Grant Davies,
Regular Columnist, THL
Articles | Author's Page | Website

Michelle Malkin: Rick Perry’s Bad Medicine

Go Michelle Malkin! The following is an excerpt from a National Review piece by Malkin, detailing exactly how bad of a president Rick Perry's record in Texas suggests he would be:

"Texas, we have a problem. Your GOP governor is running for president against Barack Obama. Yet one of his most notable acts as executive of the nation’s second-largest state smacks of every worst habit of the Obama administration. And his newly crafted rationalizations for the atrocious decision are positively Clintonesque.

In February 2007, Gov. Rick Perry signed a shocking executive order forcing every sixth-grade girl to submit to a three-jab regimen of the Gardasil vaccine. He also forced state health officials to make the vaccine available “free” to girls aged nine to 18. The drug, promoted by manufacturer Merck as an effective shield against the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV) and genital warts, as well as cervical cancer, had been approved by the Food and Drug Administration just eight months before Perry’s edict."

After a thorough demolition job of Rick Perry's ridiculous, big-government, nanny-state policy in Texas, as well as his lame "apology" for it and the arguments his supporters use to defend him, Michelle Malkin concludes:

"Trusting Rick Perry’s tea-party credentials is a perilous shot in the dark."


Read the entire piece at National Review Online.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Aftershock: "Another Earthquake" in Virginia - What Really Caused It

Photo: Actual image of the damage caused by the earthquake in Virginia (source).

Americans on the West Coast have relished the opportunity to make fun of East Coast residents this week after an earthquake struck Virginia. Late Wednesday night, Californians had another laugh when aftershocks struck Virginia and residents took to Twitter to report "another earthquake" on the East Coast.

While it might be funny to West Coast residents, it is worth considering how scary it might have been to feel a heavy rumble in Washington D.C. mere days before the ten year anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks. Thank goodness that wasn't what caused the rumble, but what did?

One of my colleagues, Jared Fuller, founder of YAL's Year of Youth program, said:

"Don't worry America - in D.C., that rumble we just felt was the debt ceiling collapsing, that's all."

But I've got another theory: I think the earthquake they felt in Virginia and Washington D.C. was all of our Founding Fathers rolling over in their graves at the same time!

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Perspective: London Historian Says "Rioting has been a London tradition for centuries."

Have the recent wave of riots in London been the handiwork of uncivilized foreign immigrants, an unthinkable example of a culture entirely alien to the civilized West? Peter Ackroyd, the greatest living chronicler of London-- particularly its seamy, violent underside-- says no:

Speaking in a book-lined office near King's Cross, London, within walking distance of where the rioting began, Mr Ackroyd resolutely refused to see a new epoch dawning. "I can't get at all worked up about these most recent phenomena," he said. "They simply show a pattern of activity in the city that will endure as long as the city itself endures.

"I don't like those commentators who keep on saying that London will never be the same again. London is always the same again. I remember those comments were made very loudly after the [July 2005] terrorist attacks – 'London will never be the same again, London has lost its innocence' – it was all nonsense. London was exactly the same again the following day. "Rioting has always been a London tradition. It has been since the early Middle Ages. There's hardly a spate of years that goes by without violent rioting of one kind or another. They happen so frequently that they are almost part of London's texture. The difference is that in the past the violence was more ferocious, and the penalties were more ferocious – in most cases, death."

I ask, then, what he makes of the much-quoted comments of his fellow historian, David Starkey, and am met with a blank look. He is not aware that Starkey has spoken out on anything recently. I paraphrase Starkey's now infamous remarks about young whites becoming black, and am cut short by a snort.

"Oh well, that's often been the complaint, that immigrants ..." Here he interrupted himself. "They're not even immigrants, are they? They're born English!" Another snort. "I don't really have anything to say to that because it doesn't strike me as particularly relevant."

Read the entire article at The Independent.

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

Jack Cafferty: Ron Paul Deserves More Attention

This one's been making its rounds on the blogosphere for a few days now, but it absolutely needs to be showcased here in case you haven't seen it. My hat is off to you, Jack Cafferty:

Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
Articles | Author's Page

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