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Friday Afternoon Roundup -Principle or Politics?

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From NY to Jerusalem, Daniel Greenfield Covers the Stories Behind the News

This has been a week of the vague, with both Democrats and Republicans fumbling for an agenda. The Democratic left is growing tired of Obama's fumbling.

Obama is trying to figure out how he can get the ball past the Republicans, but for all his angry rhetoric, he's low on courage. But the Republicans are demonstrating the same self-destructive behavior that gave rise to a Democratic congress in the first place. Shelby's hold, which should have been about the nominees themselves, now risks painting the GOP as the greedy party again, and the Supermajority, which was supposed to be a people's tool, risks turning into a pork tool. And the entire Tanker dispute only plays into Obama and Pelosi's promotion of defense spending cuts, by making national defense look like a drag on the economy.

If this goes on, the Republicans will destroy themselves before 2012, which will let Obama wait out his current setback, and return stronger than ever. And just as the Republicans need to wait Obama out, he may be willing to wait out the Republicans as well. Particularly if Republicans midterm victories in 2010 mean nothing more than a bipartisan spending spree that will disgust the public, turn off independent voters, and make the Democrats look good, because at least their spending comes back with promises about providing jobs and social benefits.

Then there was Palin's attempt to jump on the weakest possible criticism of Rahm Emanuel, not over the relevant corruption issues, but over his use of the word, "Retarded." It was supposed to be the liberals who played speech police, not conservatives. There are liberal blogs where even using the word "Lame" is off limits, because it's "ablist". I don't think we want to go down that road. I certainly don't.

And since just about everyone does use the word, "Retarded" to mean stupid, Palin found herself having to respond to Limbaugh's use of it, to avoid being called a hypocrite. And this entire mess could have been avoided, if she had kept her focus on making substantive criticisms of the Obama Administration. And it's substantive criticisms that we need.

There's no doubt that Obama and the people surrounding him are amoral jackasses at best. Just as there was no doubt that Bill Clinton was a serial adulterer. But to win you have to connect political wrongdoing to direct damage done to the public. Without that, your criticisms will remain impotent.

Then there's Tom Tancredo at the Tea Party Convention. I like his speeches, as always, but I have to question a man who endorsed Romney, saying that he's happy McCain lost, because he would have been terrible on immigration and budget discipline. I'm sorry, but there really isn't that much difference there. And is Obama any better on immigration and budget discipline?

I suppose I have a certain inborn suspicion of politicians. The art of politics very often seems to require staking out a principled position and then selling it out at the best price. And in the process people who look for principled politicians, all too often find just the politics underneath.

In California, Carly Fiorina and Tom Campbell are competing to prove which of them is the worst candidate. By the time they're done I suspect they'll convince a lot of people that both of them are. Which sadly is also true.

Sure the demon sheep ad is terrible, but consider how many people watch politics ads, vs how many people will see this one. From the "anything for a win" standpoint, the demon sheep is probably a victory, albeit a Pyrrhic one. "I'm sorry Carly, but we had to destroy your candidacy, to save your candidacy."

Meanwhile in Illinois, the Democratic Lt. Governor will be a pawnbroker with a history of violence toward women, and steroid abuse, who spent 2 million dollars getting elected. This of course is more proof that a party can't escape its past, until it actually cleans house.

And so I'd like to come back for a moment to the Kentucky GOP primary for a moment. The two big candidates in the race, Trey Grayson and Rand Paul have each raised a little under 2 million dollars. Together they're competing to see whether a former Democrat or the radical Mises libertarian who wanted to close Gitmo and release its terrorists "back into battle" will be the Republican candidate for the Kentucky Senate.

Mitch McConnell is backing Grayson. Sarah Palin is backing Paul, a move almost as cynical as her campaigning for McCain, or Tancredo's endorsement of Romney. But there's one authentic conservative candidate in the race-- and unsurprisingly, it's the one that no one is talking about. Bill Johnson.

This is Bill Johnson , the Republican Senate candidate that the media and many of the big bloggers won't talk about. This is what he stands for in his own words. And unlike Rand Paul, he hasn't transformed his views to fit in and win a Republican primary.

Fellow concerned citizens, we are at a turning point in the history of our nation. Jobs are moving offshore, the economy is weak, taxes are increasing, and prosperity is fading. Our elected officials offer expanded government, more spending, and industry takeovers as the solution. Socialism is taking hold.

I am not a politician. I am a concerned citizen, military veteran, and businessman who believes it is time for new leadership in Washington. I want to be a voice for concerned citizens across the Bluegrass State who have 'had enough' of politicians violating our trust. For that reason, I am running in the 2010 Republican primary for the United States Senate. I stand for limited government, low taxes, strong military, gun ownership, marriage between one man and one woman, and life begins at conception.

Now why don't you hear much about Bill Johnson? There's the key line right there. "I am not a politician". And it's the politicians who make the deals, who say one thing and do another, scratching each other's backs and writing checks to each other, trading off the public's support like it was a game of Monopoly.

And it's why Bill Johnson hasn't raised millions of dollars to run misleading ads like Rand Paul and Trey Grayson (in case you hadn't heard, the guy who talked about building a left-right coalition to roll back the American Empire is now a hawk on terrorism). Instead he's the real thing. Which is why he doesn't have the millions of dollars, the top flight political endorsements or the Obama style posters that have already been created for Rand Paul.

He's actually supported by the local Tea Party organizers, not by organizations who are cashing in on the brand.

Local Kentucky activists and bloggers like Genuine GOP Mom and Conservative KY Gal have done a great job of covering this race, and they're a much better resource on this election, than the "big bloggers" who are plugged into the national political game. Genuine GOP Mom has proven in detail which is the genuine pro-life candidate in this race.

But the problem can be summed up in Bill Johnson's own press release

"The Bill Johnson for U.S. Senate Campaign continues to run a low cost and fiscally responsible campaign. Rand Paul, a doctor, and Trey Grayson, a lawyer, are engaged in a battle about who can raise and spend the most money in a primary campaign. This conflict is typical Capitol Hill politics where tax and spend is the norm. How much money is enough?... 2010 is an important election. Voters have never been more challenged to examine carefully each candidate and their positions on issues independent of the size of their wallets. Any other course is just letting money determine the outcome. This lesson was learned in the 2008 presidential campaigns."

And if Grayson or Paul win, it will be the money determining the campaign. And instead of a reformist candidate, we'll be choosing whether a former Democrat or the next inheritor of the Paul political name gets to play the same old games in the Senate.

Bill Johnson is accepting donations for his fight to elect a Reagan conservative to the Senate in Kentucky, not a former Democrat or a candidate whose views on the War on Terror are virtually indistinguishable from Obama's.

Continuing the roundup, Debbie Schlussel has the larger story on the real role that Al Queda's female bomber and her circle of friends played in the United States.

The real insight: Siddiqui's conviction for shooting at U.S. soldiers after they caught her in Afghanistan (with chemicals, a dirty bomb recipe, plans to blow up U.S. gas stations and major New York sites) is really not the story here. The story is Aafia Siddiqui's part in the early stages of Al-Qaeda around the world, as it was formed by a close circle of friends, who were mostly Muslim students in Boston here on visas in the late 1980s and early to mid-'90s. One of those students, one of those friends, was Aafia Siddiqui, who would later become Al-Qaeda's designated master terrorist in the U.S., until she was caught in Afghanistan. It's the story of how America dropped the ball on the inchoate Al-Qaeda world leadership concentrated amongst a few Muslim visa holders concentrated in a major American city. And it's the story of how America let those people leave the country and did nothing to stop them, even the one they caught after 9/11 and willingly gave up to the Syrians.

The whole thing is worth reading, because it shows just how unprepared we are to deal with the Muslim Jihad in our midst.

At Israel Matzav meanwhile, a copy of the letter that John Kerry provided to Code Pink and the Gaza Freedom March.

Code Pink co-founders Jodie Evans and Medea Benjamin used Kerry's letter at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt to pressure the Egyptian government to allow 1300 leftists passage into Gaza from Egypt. The leftists gathered in Cairo from around the world to mark the one-year anniversary of Israel's defense against Hamas' rocket and mortar attacks.


Essentially Kerry once again provided direct political aid to America and Israel's terrorist enemies. Gaza is held by the Muslim Brotherhood spawned Hamas. Anyone still remember his line about "masada?"

Carl also suggests that some of the Hamas 54 congressmen I wrote about are stepping away from their CAIR backed "open Gaza" letter. But I don't see them backing away, so much as covering their asses with some spin, particularly in New Jersey, where they might have some 'splaining to do come election day.

For now only Yvette Clark has actually said the letter was a mistake, her Jewish constituents however are not buying it, by pointing to her record.

They say that when a politician says "Yes" they mean maybe, when they say "Maybe" they mean no, and if they say no, then they aren't a politician. Walking this narrow line is sometimes a necessity for a politician trying to appeal to as broad an audience as possible, but from the viewpoint of the electorate, it is of utmost importance to cut away the political façade and make estimated calculations on where exactly they stand.

On January 3rd 2007 following a sweeping electoral victory that gave her a whopping 93% of the vote, Yvette Clarke assumed office as Congresswoman for New York's 11th congressional district, which includes Brownsville,Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Kensington, Midwood, Prospect Heights

It is becoming increasingly clear for all to see that she is not a friend of Israel by any means. For some, the tell tale signs became clear early on, when she signed a bill that called for an immediate ceasefire between Israel and Hezbollah during the second Lebanon war, effectively calling for pressure on Israel that would limit its efforts to fight for comprehensive security on its northern border.

Only six weeks ago, she was one of a small congress minority that voted against Res. 867 that "called on the President and the Secretary of State to oppose unequivocally any endorsement or further consideration of the Report of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict." This fact-finding report that she did not oppose is more commonly known as the Goldstone Report, recently described by Alan Dershowitz as a "defamation written by an evil, evil man."
But this week she continued her assault on Israel's efforts to secure its citizens, when she signed a letter to the President, organized by Muslim Congressman Keith Ellison, who has been called out for his connections with CAIR a Muslim representative body that may have had affiliations with terror groups.


At the Grendel Report, a look at the latest status of the EPA's Cap and Trade Mafia

Soccer Dad argues that the Goldstone Report is the product of 40 years of perversion of international law.

Then there's Target's Pally globe, the inevitable result of outsourcing production to a Communist anti-Israel country. (Via Jack Kemp)

And Ted Belman has some thoughts on whether Sarah Palin should champion plug in hybrid cars.

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