27 November 2008

Jewish Hostages in Mumbai

Jews are some of those being held by Muslim terrorists in Mumbai, India.  Rabbi Gavriel Holzberg and his wife Rivka have been seen unconscious but alive after the Chabad center in the Nariman building was invaded by the terrorists.  Information is sketchy but it seems that the couple's two year old son and the cook were allowed to leave the building.  There may be up to six more Israelis also being held hostage.

Chabad Lubavitch is a movement made up of Jews that follow the teachings of the late Lubavitcher Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson.  Many of these Chabadniks have spread around the world in order to give Jews an opportunity to explore their Jewish roots and heritage no matter where they might live.  They truly believe in the Jewish concept of loving your neighbor as you love yourself.  

We pray for the safety of Rabbi Gavriel and his wife Rivka along with all those who are being held by these terrorists.  Their Jewish names are Gavriel Noach ben Freida Bluma and Rivka bas Yehudis.

Please take a moment to say Psalm 20, traditionally said in times of trouble.

24 November 2008

Are We Looking for Another Middle East War?

The United States is planning to sell the M60 tank to Lebanon. Is this a good idea when Hezbollah runs the place?

23 November 2008

Israel's Schizophrenia

We are tired of fighting, we are tired of being courageous, we are tired of winning, we are tired of defeating our enemies.  
These words, spoken by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in 2005, baffle me and should baffle everyone.  The main function of government is to protect its citizens.  When the Prime Minister of the country has effectively given up on ... everything, it's time to move on.

If nothing else, anyone can see that the State of Israel has its problems with security.  It is constantly under attack from its surrounding neighbors and even from those within it.  The Gaza Strip, while no longer under Israel's control, has gone ahead to become a official terrorist state.  Hundreds of rockets fall on the cities of Sderot and Ashkelon (unreported of course), and no one cares.

While we in the United States discuss the economic situation we find ourselves in - should we bail Company A out or Company B - Israeli discussions center around the issues of dividing the capital city, or evicting Jews from their homes.  Should Judea/Samaria be given to terrorists?  Can we trust the Syrian President Assad to keep the peace if he's given the Golan Heights?  

These are all serious questions, but they all come back to the question that has never been answered by any government since the beginning of the State:  Is Israel a state of Jews - or a Jewish State?  It cannot be both.  60 years later we see now what the results are of this schizophrenia - just take a look at Ehud Olmert.

17 November 2008

Israeli Democracy - An Exercise in Musical Chairs

1st bumper sticker:
A Jew does not push out another Jew.
2nd bumper sticker:
Tell the nations of the world: Go to Hell!  G-d gave us this Land.

I took this photo a couple summers ago in Israel.  Nothing has changed, other than who occupies the musical chairs of the parliamentary government called the Knesset.  Elections are coming soon - let's see who sits where when the music stops.

11 November 2008

What War?

The New York Times has a knack of giving away sensitive information, like where our troops are operating.  It's a good thing we're not at war or anything serious like that.  

Veterans Day

Please take a moment today to thank those who think of more than just themselves.

In honor of those who serve I am including links to some great organizations that do a lot for our servicemen and women. Feel free to make a donation on this special day.

10 November 2008

Semper Fidelis

The Marines. Established November 10, 1775, the United States Marines have fought in every American armed conflict since. We honor their service today.

The Marines' Hymn

From the Halls of Montezuma
To the Shores of Tripoli;
We fight our country's battles
In the air, on land and sea;
First to fight for right and freedom
And to keep our honor clean;
We are proud to claim the title
Of United States Marine.

Our flag's unfurled to every breeze
From dawn to setting sun;
We have fought in ev'ry clime and place
Where we could take a gun;
In the snow of far-off Northern lands
And in sunny tropic scenes;
You will find us always on the job
The United States Marines.

Here's health to you and to our Corps
Which we are proud to serve
In many a strife we've fought for life
And never lost our nerve;
If the Army and the Navy
Ever look on Heaven's scenes;
They will find the streets are guarded
By the United States Marines.

09 November 2008

Get Rid of Affirmative-Action!

No matter how problematic Obama's policies are, Americans can be proud and excited about having elected our first black man to the office of the Presidency.  This certainly is an historic moment.

What I am most excited about is that the excuses are gone.  American blacks can no longer say that they are unable to reach the highest office of the land.  There is no longer a "glass-ceiling" getting in the way.  Therefore, it is certainly time to get rid of the affirmative-action policies that hold African-Americans back.

Affirmative-action may have been necessary 50 years ago, but not any more.  Affirmative-action is not a positive for blacks.  Seeing a black student at Harvard, one might ask themselves - did they work for that spot in an such a prestigious university or was it given to them?  It is unfair to that student for anyone to have to think that way... especially when it is their own hard work that got them there.  On the other hand, it is also unfair to that student, through affirmative-action policies to be given that opportunity and fail when they are placed somewhere where they are unable to seriously compete.

It is time for African-Americans to take a look at their own communities and see that it is not the "white man" holding them back, but their own sense of victimhood and the breakdown of the black family.  They can now look at Barack Obama, our new president-elect and see for themselves that it is hard work that brings you the results you desire, and nothing less than incredible hard work.

05 November 2008

What Went Wrong? The Post-Mortem

What went wrong?  Why did Senator McCain lose the 2008 election?

I'm going to narrow it down to three reasons:

1.  John McCain tried to play nice.  
He didn't attack Obama on almost anything important.  He didn't attack Obama and the Democrats for the economic crisis we find ourselves in today.  Rather, he allowed the Democrats to attack him - when he had been one of the first to warn about a meltdown occuring.  

Beginning during the Clinton years, banks were required to give loans to high risk buyers with bad credit in order to keep high ratings with the government.  Furthermore, the Democrats were the ones who were in bed with Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.  There was a bill that had been brought forward back in 2005 that would have helped avoid our current catastrophe - but the Democrats killed it.  But why?
... we now know that many of the senators who protected Fannie and Freddie, including Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Christopher Dodd, have received mind-boggling levels of financial support from them over the years.

Throughout his political career, Obama has gotten more than $125,000 in campaign contributions from employees and political action committees of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, second only to Dodd, the Senate Banking Committee chairman, who received more than $165,000.
'Nuff said.  McCain also didn't attack Obama on all his radical associations (I've said enough about this, see below).

2.  Senator McCain did not clearly identify his policies for the future.  He needed to have picked four things he would do (at the same time explaining Obama's position) and repeat them again and again.
* Finding domestic sources of energy/Slamming Obama for not being interested in nuclear power alternatives and domestic coal/oil/shale.
* Emphasizing his foreign policy credentials/Slamming Obama for lack of credentials.
* Explain how he's worked with the Democrats during his time in office in order to create real reform in Washington DC/Explain how Obama is not a real reformer or bi-partisan.
* Plans for the Economy - Lower taxes for small business and families, reform of the health care industry and insurance/Explain how it is impossible for Obama to return money to 95% of the American people when 40% of them don't pay taxes to begin with, and showing that small businesses would be in deep trouble under Obama.

McCain was unable to clearly define his vision.  Obama with his mantra of "Change" (whatever that meant) was enough to carry him through.

3.  The Media was completely rooting for Obama since the primaries when he was in a battle for the nomination with Hillary Clinton.  Remember back to the Saturday Night skit poking fun at the mainstream media for throwing him softball questions... Are you comfortable Senator Obama -or- can I get you a pillow?  The media took offense but did nothing to fix the situation, and it only got worse.

Even some journalists have come clean about this bias.
The traditional media are playing a very, very dangerous game -- with their readers, with the Constitution and with their own fates.

The sheer bias in the print and television coverage of this election campaign is not just bewildering, but appalling.  And over the last few months I've found myself slowly moving from shaking my head at the obvious one-sided reporting, to actually shouting at the screen of my television and my laptop computer.

But worst of all, for the last couple weeks, I've begun -- for the first time in my adult life -- to be embarrassed to admit what I do for a living.  A few days ago, when asked by a new acquaintance what I did for a living, I replied that I was "a writer," because I couldn't bring myself to admit to a stranger that I'm a journalist.
This bias in the media has been found in research done by Pew Research and Project for Excellence in Journalism so it shouldn't truly surprise us - but it does and it is a disappointment.  It is time to say good-bye to the pretense of an "objective" media.

All this being said, the 2008 Presidential campaign is over.  Senator McCain did not run a great campaign, while Senator Obama did.  I congratulate Obama on a well run race.  Even though I extend my congratulations to him and his supporters, I am still concerned with regard to his perspectives on many, many issues.  I look forward to seeing his Cabinet picks and domestic/foreign policy advisors.  

Senator John McCain is a very honorable man who has spent his entire life in service to this great country.  While I have never seen eye to eye with his ideas, I respect someone who sees himself as a servant of the people and not as one who sees America as inherently flawed, that no one else but he can fix it.  He embodies the famous words of President John Kennedy, "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country."  

I wish Senator McCain all the best as he heads back to the Senate, and pray for Senator Obama that he do the right thing when it comes time for him to lead the United States for the next four years.

Keep the Change

I agree.

03 November 2008

Obama Wants to Kill the Coal Industry in America

Senator Obama wants to kill the coal industry in the United States.  He's stated it himself as has Joe Biden.  It is also interesting to note that Obama plans to use the power of the government itself to punish anyone who wants to be involved in coal production.  This is a dangerous move.  It is not the government's job to decide which industries should live and die.  It is also important to note that many of our states depend on the coal industry: Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, Texas, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah and Montana.  Coal also contributes almost 50% of power produced in the United States.  Until we are able to find alternative energies (and jobs for those who work in the coal industry) it is foolhardy and counter-productive (understatement of the year) to attempt to destroy this important industry.

Who is Rich?

Who is rich? It sounds like an existential question - but it's not. Obama and the Democrats keep redefining what "rich" is. First it was $250,000. Now it's down to $50-70,000. This is the problem when you run an election based along the lines of class warfare and envy. Who is rich? Who is poor? What can the government do to spread the wealth? Paying taxes is patriotic. Not being interested in paying high taxes makes you "selfish". This is the Democratic platform put forth by Obama and Biden. Working hard and being successful is not part of their figurings. If you have money - they'll be happy to take it from you.

Obama keeps repeating that he's going to give a money back to 95% of the American People. That's great, except that 40% of the American People don't actually pay taxes. Hey, that's what you call "spreading the wealth" right?!

Who Paid for Obama's Harvard Education?

Percy Sutton, former Manhattan borough president, has given an interview explaining how he came to meet Barack Obama through a third person. This person is Khalid al-Mansour, a black Muslim and mentor to the Black Panthers of the 1960s. Sutton claims that al-Mansour was raising money to help send Obama to Harvard. Al-Mansour is also an advisor to Saudi prince Alwaleed bin Talal who was generous enough to offer $10 million to help rebuild Manhattan after the terrorist attack of 9/11, while at the same time blaming Israel and American's pro-Israel policies for the attack. Mayor Guiliani had enough sense to not take the money. But we have to wonder why a person such as Khalid al-Mansour took an interest in Barack Obama. We will never find out since the media does not care about digging into Obama's background.

02 November 2008

More of My Writings - Senator Barack Obama

I have been doing a lot of writing on issues regarding Senator Barack Obama.  I am adding links to these articles here from earliest to latest.  I recommend reading them before going to vote this coming Tuesday.  If none of these issues bother you - go ahead and vote for Obama.  If they do make you wonder about him - please reconsider your support for him.

Keep on Talking!  (February 14, 2007)

Yes, You are Judged by the Company You Keep (March 30, 2008)

You Sir, Are No John Kennedy  (September 8, 2008)

Obama and Voter Fraud  (October 12, 2008)

Joe the Everyday American (October 17, 2008)

A True Story from Queens, New York

I received this story from a friend.  It made my day!

This happened to a good friend of mine, told to me this morning.

Last night on a bus to Queens

A friend of mine who is a huge McCain/Palin supporter and also happens to be gay was on a very crowded bus headed for Queens.  He had a number of McCain/Palin campaign buttons pinned to his work bag.  All of a sudden this moonbat in his late 40s with long greasy hair and a black trench coat stands over him and starts eyeballing the buttons on his bag and begins to mutter to himself.  My friend asked him if he had a problem and the moonbat said something about those 'ugly buttons' and how he's been brainwashed.  My friend said, 'look, I don't have anything to say to you.  You can think whatever you like.'  The moonbat started going off about how bad America is and awful this country is.  

Suddenly, an Iraqi man a seat away gets up and says, 'You can't say that.  America is a great country.  I came here from Iraq 10 years ago to escape Saddam.  I am an American citizen now.  The Americans saved my country and freed my people.  I will never go back there because I love it here.  America is the greatest place.  I have a business here and a good life thanks to America.  I am voting for McCain.'

The moonbat then said, 'Then you both must be listening to those Nazis.'  Then an older Jewish woman gets up and elbows her way through the crowd.  She said, 'I survived the Holocaust.  I lived under the Nazis.'  She pulled up her sleeve and showed her concentration camp tattoo.  She went on, 'You should be ashamed of yourself for comparing the United States to Nazis!  How dare you!'  The moonbat moved away still muttering.  Clearly outflanked.

Then another woman sitting nearby leaned over to my friend and said, 'Thank you.  Before now I didn't know who to vote for.  But if that guy is one of Obama's fans then I am voting for McCain!'  The bus pulled over and through the window everyone saw the moonbat go flying out and hit cement, his bag on the ground, his papers scattered and his commie socialist newspapers blowing in the wind.  Then this other guy onboard who was quiet all along said in his heavy NY accent, 'Just call me Vinny the Plumber.  I do things the Queens way, I tripped the m*therf*****r!

Senator Obama's Resume

I got this email from a friend outlining brilliantly some of the problems that we have with Barack Obama.  

With the election only days away, I feel compelled to send this email to alert my friends, family, and others whose emails I happen to have to the danger than an Obama presidency would pose to the United States, Israel, and the world, and the necessity of electing a proven leader like Senator John McCain.  Senator Obama has been very clear about how he would lead this nation; do not say you did not know.

He says, "before an expansion of nuclear power in considered, key issues must be addressed including: security of nuclear fuel and waste, waste storage, and proliferation" (pg.6).  This means, in practice, that he opposes nuclear power.  We know how to safely dispose of the waste; France does it every year, to the tune of 75% of its power.

* Are you not troubled that Senator Obama is not serious about energy independence?  He waxes long about solar power, wind power, and ethanol, none of which is close to being practically usable on a large scale.  Yet he opposes drilling outside the areas already set aside on the Continental Shelf.  Yes, I know, Senator McCain opposes drilling in ANWR.  I disagree with him on that.

Since when does the government have the right to tell a company, "You have made too much money this year.  We will tell you what you may do with your record profits"?  And why stop with the oil companies?  Why not tell the same thing to Microsoft?  Why not the trial lawyers, with their tobacco lawsuits?  Why not Senator Obama himself with his book deals?  Because the oil companies, who set their prices according to OPEC's price per barrel, are seen as evil and greedy.  Not like the workers' and teachers' unions, who exist only for the betterment of society, right?  Are you not troubled by this extreme government interference in the free market?  Of a politician telling a company, "You have made too much money this year!"?

* Senator Obama has been wrong on three major foreign policy/security issues:
1. Despite overwhelming evidence (according to major Democrats) that Saddam Hussein had WMDs, Senator Obama is against the Iraq War.  (Before you say, "Bush lied, people died!" see this LA Times article by an editor at the New Republic.)  Are you not troubled that our potential Commander-in-Chief does not support this war despite a real threat to American interests, despite overwhelming evidence?
2. He then opposed the Surge.  When the Surge worked (according to his own words!) he could not admit that he had been wrong to oppose it from the start (find the line of questioning that begins, "I think you were desperately wrong on the surge" and take it from there.)  Are you not troubled that Senator Obama voted against a military strategy that has been incredibly successful?
3. When Russia invaded Georgia in August, Senator Obama's first reaction was to call on both Russia and Georgia to show restraint.  Er?  Russia invaded Georgia!  Can you image someone on September 2, 1939, calling on both Germany and Poland to show restraint?  How about December 8, 1941, calling on both Japan and the United States to show restraint?  Later, he changed his tune, calling only on Russia to cease its invasion.  Are you not troubled that Senator Obama was incapable of distinguishing the aggressor from the victim, and instinctively responded with a statement of moral equivalency?

* Senator Obama has not been forthright about his position on Israel.  At AIPAC he said, "...Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel and it must remain undivided' (pg.5).  Just two days later, after Mahmoud Abbas responded angrily, Senator Obama effectively renounced his statement.  Are you not troubled that Senator Obama gave a sure-fire applause line to a pro-Israel gathering, only to retract it within 48 hours?  Did he lie in his speech?  Or is he clueless as to what an undivided means?

* Senator Obama has some very dangerous supporters who want him elected.  He has appeared at events with people who threaten Israel with violence.  Anti-American and anti-Israeli world leaders wish to see him elected.  Are you not troubled by Senator Obama's ties to people who are vehemently anti-Israel?  Are you not troubled by some of the world's worst tyrants hoping for an Obama victory?

* For 20 years, Senator Obama sat in the pews of a church where the pastor was filled with hatred and venom for the United States.  He has described this man as his mentor.  He was a father figure to Senator Obama.  Senator Obama even titled one of his two books The Audacity of Hope, based on one of this pastor's sermons.  This pastor has accused the United States of creating the AIDS virus to kill blacks.  He wishes for G-d to "damn America", and not bless it.  And only when it became politically dangerous to continue to support this man, did Sen. Obama end their relationship.  Are you not troubled by a 20-year relationship with a race-baiting, America-hating preacher?  No one can be held responsible for every wild statement made by his or her spiritual advisor.  But why would you continue to seek guidance from such a person?  We know virtually nothing about Sen. Obama's character.  But we do know that his close friend was Jeremiah Wright.

For these reasons, and more, I submit that Senator Barack Obama is entirely unfit to serve as the 44th President of the United States.  I will try to put together a case for John McCain as well.  I welcome your responses. - Aryeh (aryehleifert@gmail.com)


Welcome one and all... Republicans, Independents, Democrats and anyone else wandering through.

A Patriot's Journal contains my reflections on the political scene of the day.  You may agree or disagree with me as you see fit and of course I appreciate any comments you may want to send my way.

I believe in honesty.  Honesty in understanding politics and the world around us.  I believe that we need a clear understanding of issues and ideas.  I believe that good character and good judgment are essential in our candidates and in our civic life.  I believe in the American work ethic - work hard and be successful, and that there should be no limit to that success.  I also believe in the American Republic - the Republic where we as individuals are responsible to one another, not where the government is responsible to take care of us.  In other words, I believe in the Unites States Constitution and Bill of Rights (all of them).

I will own up to my biases for all those who don't know me.  I am a registered Independent, though I generally vote Republican.  I am a conservative.  I enjoy politics and read everything I can get my hands on.  I have a solid understanding of the issues and take pride in the fact that my articles are better researched than most news articles I see in the mainstream press.

I welcome you now to A Patriot's Journal.  Don't be a stranger.