Obama Thinks We’re Not Playing Chess With Russia + More – Daily Digest

Posted on Tue 10/06/2015 by

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THE FOUNDATION

“It is a principle incorporated into the settled policy of America, that as peace is better than war, war is better than tribute.” —James Madison, 1816

TOP RIGHT HOOKS

Obama Thinks We’re Not Playing Chess With Russia

For months, Barack Obama received politically tainted intelligence briefings about the rise of the Islamic State, causing him to confidently consider the group the “JV team.” What reason do we have in not assuming that he’s receiving bad info on Russia’s intentions? Obama has tried to quell concerns over Russia’s aggression in Syria. “We’re not going to make Syria into a proxy war between the United States and Russia,” Obama said Friday. “This is not some superpower chessboard contest. And anybody who frames it in that way isn’t paying very close attention to what’s been happening on the chessboard.” Obama shouldn’t have been quick to insult the nation’s intelligence. Not only had the Great Bear brought anti-aircraft weapons into Syria to fight a terrorist organization that has no air force, but Sen. John McCain said America’s secretary of state called his Russian counterpart three times and Obama had a long conversation with Vladimir Putin in order to figure out what Moscow is up to. The answer became clearer when a Russian general showed up in Baghdad Wednesday to announce that Russia would strike Syria within the hour. Now, after days of bombings, it’s apparent Russia is targeting CIA-backed Syrian rebels. On Saturday, the Obama administration’s strategy was to double down, to send more arms and make more bombing runs. It’s time, however, to rethink that chessboard.

Baltimore: A City Broken After Mismanagement

Politically, Stephanie Rawlings-Blake made a mistake after the incident in Baltimore that left Freddie Gray mortally injured in the back of a police van. During the protests and criticisms of the city’s police force, she sided with the mob looking for its brand of “justice” instead of her police force attempting to uphold Rule of Law. It yielded bitter fruit. Police officers strapped on their guns every morning demoralized. City residents viewed the police with disrespect. And criminals are flexing newfound confidence. As a result, crime has spiked in the city. During September, the number of non-fatal shootings were double that of 2014. Homicides climbed 39%. This is where it gets ironic: Hot Air’s Jazz Shaw notes that the U.S. Council of Mayors held a meeting in the city at the beginning of October to discuss, in the words of the Baltimore Sun, “economic development, community policing and the spike in homicides many cities saw over the summer.” Baltimore is hardly the poster child for solutions to these problems, as Rawlings-Blake announced that she would not seek another term as mayor. Another leftist village burns.

Apologizing for America Day

Whether it’s ethnic pride, gay pride or what have you, we’re all about pride in America these days — unless it’s pride in America. The latest outrage from the Village Academic Curriculum File is a Wyoming school that canceled “America Day” because some immigrant students might feel excluded. True story. “Many different students could have felt singled out,” Activities Director Mike Hansen told the local newspaper. “We’re trying to be inclusive and safe, make everyone feel welcome.” Well isn’t that sweet. Maybe they’re taking a page from Barack Obama’s book on “fundamentally transforming” or apologizing for our nation. But this is America, and some of us won’t be cowed by the politically correct Left. Many teens showed up to class decked out in patriotic garb and waving American flags in defiance of their “educators.” Besides, as Todd Starnes notes, “There was a time when immigrants came to America because they loved freedom. They loved this land of opportunity. They wanted a better life for their children.” The Left doesn’t want students to hear that message, though. It might lead to, well, American pride.

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FEATURED RIGHT ANALYSIS

Clinton Misfires on Gun Control

By Nate Jackson

You can always rely on leftists to offer the wrong solution to a problem. Hillary Clinton’s gun control proposals are typically off the mark. Anything to get the focus off her private email server, right?

“We need universal background checks,” Clinton says of her first “brilliant” idea in her newly released stance on gun violence prevention. “We know that they will work.” Unfortunately, a background check didn’t stop the murderer in Oregon. Nor did it stop the man who killed two journalists on live TV in Virginia, or the sociopath who killed six and wounded Rep. Gabby Giffords in Tucson, or the movie theater killer in Aurora. All four men passed background checks and bought guns legally.

As for the Charleston murderer, Clinton blamed a “loophole in the Brady Bill.” But as we’ve noted previously, that particular case was due to human error, not a “loophole.” Clinton repeated the claim that 40% of guns are bought without a background check, though that statistic originates from a 1994 survey of 251 people — hardly definitive evidence of anything.

Nevertheless, Clinton took a page out of Barack Obama’s playbook and says “if Congress won’t act,” she’ll take “administrative action to close” the supposed loophole by reclassifying anyone who sells a “significant number of guns” as someone “in the business of selling firearms.”

But as The Federalist’s Sean Davis points out, “[T]he federal government already has the statutory authority to define who does and does not qualify as an individual ‘in the business of selling firearms.’ It derives that authority from 18 U.S. Code § 921.”

Anyone who sells more than very occasionally is considered a dealer by existing law, so Clinton’s “loophole” users are already criminals. As Davis adds, “The only federal background check exemption that exists is for transactions between private, non-FFL individuals who reside in the same state. That’s it.”

To be clear, we have little problem with requiring background checks to own firearms (as current law does for the vast majority of transactions), with the caveat that they are not a fix-all solution and, as with any law, effectiveness depends on proper enforcement.

Naturally, Clinton’s proposal only gets worse. She wants gun manufacturers to be liable for how their products are used. It’s typical of Democrats to take away individual accountability. Of course, if this violation of due process was ever allowed, it would put gun manufacturers out of business — as it would any other industry where such an absurd standard was applied.

Even Bernie Sanders criticized Clinton’s notion, saying, “If somebody has a gun, and it falls into the hands of a murderer, and that murderer kills somebody with the gun, do you hold the gun manufacturer responsible? Not any more than you would hold a hammer company responsible if somebody beats somebody over the head with a hammer. That is not what a lawsuit should be about.”

Another of Clinton’s proposals is re-banning certain cosmetic features on some rifles, dubbed with the deliberately nefarious misnomer “assault weapons.” But whether a rifle has a pistol grip or a collapsible stock has no bearing on the deadliness of the weapon, and a ban would not (and did not while it existed) save a single life in any mass shooting. Rifles of any type accounted for just 248 murders in 2014 — that’s fewer than are committed with “hands, fists, and feet.” As much as Clinton would love to relive the “glory years,” her husband’s 1994 “assault weapons” ban was completely ineffective (unless you count costing Democrats the ‘94 election) and unconstitutional.

There is one thing, however, that could reduce mass shootings: Ending the phony idea that a “gun free zone” sign will deter anyone from a murderous rampage.

Whether it’s Sandy Hook, Aurora, Virginia Tech or Umpqua Community College, the most frequent common denominator in mass shootings is that they take place in locations where potential victims have been prohibited from defending themselves.

Which leaves gun confiscation — something Obama implied he’d like. But in a nation with 300 million guns and the acknowledged God-given right to self-defense with firearms woven into our Constitution, gun confiscation is never going to happen. Nor should it.

Still, there is hope. While the number of guns in the U.S. has increased 62% since 1994, violence with guns has fallen nearly 50% in the same time period. In other words, it’s not a gun problem.

Of the 30,000 gun-related deaths in the U.S. every year, more than two-thirds are suicides. Democrats not only don’t ever make the distinction (because 30,000 gun deaths sounds far worse than 8,500 murders), they push assisted suicide laws like the one Gov. Jerry Brown just signed in California.

A final point. Clinton and the gun-grabbing Left operate from the errant notion that the Second Amendment applies primarily to hunting or sport shooting. Clinton said, “Ideally, what I would love to see is gun owners, responsible gun owners, hunters, form a different organization and take back the Second Amendment from these extremists,” a reference to the NRA. Indeed, there are calls to brand the NRA a “terrorist organization.”

Of the Heller and McDonald rulings that followed an originalist interpretation of the right to keep and bear arms, Clinton also said recently, “[T]he Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment. And I am going to make that case every chance I get.”

The nation’s first chief justice, Joseph Story, offered the perfect rebuttal way back in his 1833 “Commentaries on the Constitution”: “The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered as the palladium of the liberties of a republic.”

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OPINION IN BRIEF

Dennis Prager: “[One] reason for the left-right divide on guns is that the two sides ask different questions when formulating social policies. The right tends to ask, ‘Does it do good?’ The left is more likely to ask, ‘Does it feel good?’ Attitudes toward the minimum wage provide an excellent example. As I noted in a recent column, in 1987, The New York Times editorialized against any minimum wage. The title of the editorial said it all: ‘The Right Minimum Wage: $0.00.’ … Twenty-seven years later, the same editorial page wrote the opposite of what it had written in 1987, and called for a major increase in the minimum wage. Why? Did the laws of economics change? Of course not. What changed was the question the Times asked. Having moved further and further left, the Times editorial page was now preoccupied not with what does good, but with what feels good. And it feels good to raise poor people’s minimum wage. So, too, on gun control. … I would ask every journalist who cares about truth to ask every politician who argues for more guns laws, and every anti-gun activist, just two questions: ‘Which do you believe would do more to decrease gun violence in America — more gun laws or more fathers?’ ‘More gun laws or more church attendance?’ Barack Obama says, ‘Our gun supply leads to more deaths. The GOP has no plausible alternative theory.’ The GOP does. But as usual, few Republicans say what it is. And no liberal wants to hear it.”

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “The only sure bulwark of continuing liberty is a government strong enough to protect the interests of the people, and a people strong enough and well enough informed to maintain its sovereign control over the government.” —Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945)

Braying Jackass: “There is [sic] still those shrill voices in the national political arena trying to undo what has finally been done, but they’re not going to succeed, don’t worry about it. … [T]here’s [sic] homophobes still left, most of them are running for president I think.” —Joe Biden

The BIG Lie: “I have gone further than anybody that I’m aware of in American history. Now that’s not a lot of history because we haven’t had emails for that long but as long as we’ve had them I’ve gone longer and farther trying to be as transparent as possible than anybody.” —Hillary Clinton

Non Compos Mentis: “This [Benghazi] committee was set up, as [Republicans] have admitted, for the purpose of making a partisan political issue out of the deaths of four Americans. I would never have done that, and if I were president and there were Republicans or Democrats thinking about that, I would have done everything to shut it down.” —Hillary Clinton (Well duh. Why would she incriminate herself?)

Village Idiot hypocrisy: “[Hollywood] is the most liberal of all industries … and for it to be so shamelessly white and male? … I’m telling you, anthropologists are not gonna look kindly on us. We’re gonna look like Neanderthals. … It’s a form of apartheid, folks, when a minority controls everything and the majority gets a bone thrown to them. That’s just absolutely wrong.” —filmmaker Michael Moore

Dezinformatsia: “One terrorist group is responsible for more civilian deaths since December 2012 (the Sandy Hook massacre) than Al Qaeda, Boko Haram, Hamas and the Taliban. Yet it is the only nearly-state sponsored terrorist group that is not listed by the U.S. State Department as such. It is the National Rifle Association and for their unending lobbying that’s kept a lid on gun control we now have 428 times more American deaths by gun than deaths by foreign terrorists.” —New York Daily News columnist Linda Statsi

And last… “New York City reports it’s struggling to keep an increasing population of stray cats under control. That’s a tough one. Have they tried cat-free zone signs?” —Fred Thompson

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis!
Managing Editor Nate Jackson

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