Who are the real Insurrectionists? Victor Davis Hanson

OPINION
VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: Who Are The Real Insurrectionists?
VICTOR DAVIS HANSON
CONTRIBUTOR
January 06, 2022
10:21 AM ET

Recently, Democrats have been despondent over President Joe Biden’s sinking poll numbers. His policies on the economy, energy, foreign policy, the border and COVID-19 all have lost majority support.

As a result, the Left now variously alleges that either in 2022, when they expect to lose the Congress, or in 2024, when they fear losing the presidency, Republicans will “destroy democracy” or stage a coup.

A cynic might suggest that they praise democracy when they get elected, only to claim it is broken when they lose. Or they hope to avoid their defeat by trying to terrify the electorate. Or they mask their own revolutionary propensities by projecting them onto their opponents.

After all, who is trying to federalize election laws in national elections contrary to the spirit of the Constitution? Who wishes to repeal or circumvent the Electoral College? Who wishes to destroy the more than 180-year-old Senate filibuster, the over 150-year-old nine-justice Supreme Court and the more than 60-year-old 50-state union?

Who is attacking the founding constitutional idea of two senators per state?

The Constitution also clearly states that “When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside.” Who slammed through the impeachment of former president Donald Trump without a presiding chief justice?

Never had a president been either impeached twice or tried in the Senate as a private citizen. Who did both?

The Left further broke prior precedent by impeaching Trump without a special counsel’s report, formal hearings, witnesses and cross-examinations.

Who exactly is violating federal civil rights legislation?

New York City’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene in December decided to ration potentially lifesaving new COVID-19 medicines, partially on the basis of race, in the name of “equity.”

The agency also allegedly used racial preferences to determine who would be first tested for COVID-19. Yet such racial discrimination seems in direct violation of various title clauses of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

That law makes it clear that no public agency can use race to deny “equal utilization of any public facility which is owned, operated, or managed by or on behalf of any State or subdivision thereof.” Who is behind the new racial discrimination?

In summer 2020, many local and state-mandated quarantines and bans on public assemblies were simply ignored with impunity – if demonstrators were associated with Black Lives Matter or protesting the police.

Currently, the Biden administration is also flagrantly embracing the neo-Confederate idea of nullifying federal law.

The Biden administration has allowed nearly 2 million foreign nationals to enter the United States illegally across the southern border – in hopes they will soon be loyal constituents.

The administration has not asked illegal entrants either to be tested for or vaccinated against COVID-19. Yet all U.S. citizens in the military and employed by the federal government are threatened with dismissal if they fail to become vaccinated.

Such selective exemption of lawbreaking non-U.S. citizens, but not millions of U.S. citizens, seems in conflict with the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment.

After entering the United States illegally, millions of immigrants are protected by some 550 “sanctuary city” jurisdictions. These revolutionary areas all brazenly nullify immigration law by refusing to allow federal immigration authorities to deport illegal immigrant lawbreakers.

At various times in our nation’s history – 1832, 1861-65, and 1961-63 – America was either racked by internal violence or fought a civil war over similar state nullification of federal laws.

In the last five years, we have indeed seen many internal threats to democracy.

Hillary Clinton hired a foreign national to concoct a dossier of dirt against her presidential opponent. She disguised her own role by projecting her efforts to use Russian sources onto Trump. She used her contacts in government and media to seed the dossier to create a national hysteria about “Russian collusion.”

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has violated rules governing the chain of command. Some retired officers violated Article 88 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice by slandering their commander-in-chief. Others publicly were on record calling for the military to intervene to remove an elected president.

Some of the nation’s top officials in the FBI and intelligence committee have misled or lied under oath either to federal investigators or the U.S. Congress, again, mostly with impunity.

All these sustained revolutionary activities were justified as necessary to achieve the supposedly noble ends of removing Trump.

The result is Third World-like jurisprudence in America aimed at rewarding friends and punishing enemies, masked by service to social justice.

We are in a dangerous revolutionary cycle. But the threat is not so much from loud, buffoonish one-day rioters on January 6. Such clownish characters did not for 120 days loot, burn, attack courthouses and police precincts, cause over 30 deaths, injure 2,000 policemen, and destroy at least $2 billion in property – all under the banner of revolutionary justice.

Even more ominously, stone-cold sober elites are systematically waging an insidious revolution in the shadows that seeks to dismantle America’s institutions and the rule of law as we have known them.

Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and the author of “The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won,” from Basic Books. You can reach him by e-mailing authorvdh@gmail.com.

©2022 Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

The prejudiced and biased January 6 commission

OPINION POTOMAC WATCH
What the Jan. 6 Panel Won’t Probe
Members look in vain for a coup plot but ignore Congress’s own security failures.

By Kimberley A. Strassel
Jan. 6, 2022 6:25 pm ET

Select committees come and go, with varying impact. The growing risk of Nancy Pelosi’s January 6 Committee is that it will be remembered for all the wrong reasons.

A year after the riot, it’s a fair time to evaluate what that committee has and hasn’t accomplished since its summer creation. By its charter, the committee is assigned with investigating “the facts, circumstances and causes” of the event, as well as those “relating to the preparedness and response of the United States Capitol Police” and other law-enforcement agencies. The country would hugely benefit from a straightforward accounting of that day.

Committee members have so far met with some 300 witnesses, received thousands of documents, and subpoenaed some 50 individuals, as well as phone and bank records. The committee’s leaks, and releases of White House text messages, have provided color, while its litigation and contempt citations have kept the press in gravy.

Yet the body’s near-manic focus on Donald Trump’s culpability (the facts of which have been known for a year) has also meant it has produced little that’s new. On “Face the Nation” this week, the committee’s Vice Chairman Elizabeth Cheney waxed about the committee’s “tremendous progress,” yet cited as her only example that it now had “firsthand testimony” that “President Trump was sitting in the dining room next to the Oval Office, watching on television as the Capitol was assaulted.”

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“Six hours of paralysis: Inside Trump’s failure to act after a mob stormed the Capitol,” was a headline from a Jan. 11, 2021, story in the Washington Post, which reported the president “was too busy watching fiery TV images of the crisis unfolding” to listen to pleas from family and colleagues to intervene. Thanks to the committee we now know where Mr. Trump lounged, and how many people he ignored.

More notable is what the committee has failed to find. Members made no secret they hoped to prove a coup plot run from the White House. Yet in all its 725 prosecutions, the Justice Department hasn’t presented a scintilla of evidence supporting the hypothesis. Neither has the committee—even after 300 witnesses, or texts of the former White House chief of staff.

Twisting in the wind are the urgent issues the committee won’t explore. In a memo this week to colleagues, Illinois Rep. Rodney Davis—the ranking Republican on the House Administration Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Capitol complex—noted that the select committee, a year after the riot, is “no closer to finding out what led to the catastrophic security failure,” even as the security situation has arguably deteriorated because of Capitol Police resignations and poor morale.

What makes this failure uglier is that it looks to be political. Former Capitol Police chief Steven Sund has attested that before Jan. 6 he approached House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving about obtaining the assistance of National Guard troops on the day the electoral votes were to be counted, but Mr. Irving said he was concerned about “optics.” Mr. Sund says that during the violence he again urgently asked for troops, but help was delayed because Mr. Irving said he “needed to run it up the chain of command.” Mr. Irving disputes this version of events. One obvious way to settle it is to examine documents, and the Capitol Police have produced theirs to Republicans.

But Mr. Davis reports the House sergeant-at-arms and chief administrative officer—both of whom report to Mrs. Pelosi—have steadfastly refused to produce anything to him. Likewise, the House general counsel has stonewalled requests. The speaker’s office wields obvious control over Capitol security decisions—as evidenced by Mrs. Pelosi’s decrees on fencing or magnetometers or National Guard troops—and any legitimate investigation would start by looking at her office’s briefings and involvement in Jan. 6 security—as the top of that “chain of command.” Yet when Chairman Bennie Thompson was asked in July if the committee would investigate this, he said, “I don’t see the speaker being part and parcel” of the committee’s remit. And the committee’s given no indication it is going there.

The committee risks going down in history not as the body that brought truth to Jan. 6, but the one that—in its political zeal—closed its eyes to vital issues and left the Capitol just as vulnerable. It’s done so with shocking disregard of institutional norms and decorum. The committee has eviscerated longstanding precedents with regard to its own membership, executive privilege, member privacy, intrusive subpoenas, criminal contempt votes and First Amendment rights.

With luck, this country will never have another repeat of the Jan. 6 riots. But future Congresses and White Houses will live for decades with the recklessly low standards this committee has set. America deserves a just-the-facts account of that infamous day. By the evidence to date, Ms. Pelosi’s committee sadly isn’t going to be the one to provide it.

Write to kim@wsj.com.

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Appeared in the January 7, 2022, print edition.

January 6, 2021- another unnecessary death …..of an innocent

Videos Shed Light on Death of Rosanne Boyland at US Capitol on Jan. 6
Georgia Trump supporter, 34, was trampled, struck by police as she lay dying

BY JOSEPH M. HANNEMAN January 7, 2022 Updated: January 8, 2022
Epoch Times

Newly released video from the West Terrace tunnel of the U.S. Capitol provides more details on the collapse, beating, and death of Rosanne Boyland on Jan. 6, 2021.

A three-hour video unsealed in late December in a Jan. 6 federal criminal case shows the 34-year-old President Donald Trump supporter entered the tunnel, was pushed back out, fell, and was struck by police before her lifeless body was dragged into the Capitol.

Boyland’s sister and a New York attorney question the District of Columbia medical examiner’s finding that Boyland died of an overdose of a prescription medication she took for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

Boyland, from Kennesaw, Ga., traveled to Washington D.C. for the Save America rally at the Ellipse on Jan. 6. She is seen on video entering the Capitol tunnel, walking next to conservative activist Philip Anderson. Bystanders continue filing in toward the double doors leading into the Capitol.

About 2 1/2 minutes later, police begin pushing the crowd backwards. Boyland is seen at one point looking down at her feet as the mass of humanity flows back toward the entrance. Less than two minutes after that, she disappears from view after falling. Police continue to push the crowd out of the tunnel, causing bodies to pile up on the stairs.

A man in a blue cap and fur-trimmed jacket hood points at the ground and pleads with police to stop pushing. Others in the crowd try to hold off the police, desperately signaling that people are down on the sidewalk. Despite the pleas, police make another push against the crowd, sending more bystanders down the stairs.

Men trying to pull people off the pile are doused with pepper spray. About seven minutes after Boyland was pushed out of the tunnel, a man steps right in front of police and shouts, “Stop!” He grabs an aluminum medical crutch off the ground and holds it out in a blocking motion.

At the lower right edge of the tunnel arch, the video shows a Metropolitan Police Department officer repeatedly striking someone at ground level with a baton or a large stick.

Bodycam footage released in 2021 by the U.S. Department of Justice, and cell-phone videos posted to social media, show that Boyland was hit by a police officer numerous times with what appears to be a small tree branch or walking stick.

Epoch Times Photo
A man points down to where Rosanne Boyland and others tumbled after being pushed from the Capitol West Terrace tunnel on Jan. 6, 2021. (Screen Capture/via The Epoch Times)
Shortly after, a group of men carries Boyland to a spot on the sidewalk directly in front of the police line at the center of the tunnel entrance.

Other videos show a bystander frantically performing CPR on Boyland, whose lips had turned purple. Another man, wearing body armor with a patch that read “Sheriff” on the front, takes over the CPR for a short time, but is then pulled away from Boyland. Police then grab the apparently deceased woman by the feet and drag her into the Capitol.

“She’s dying! She’s dying!” one man cries out to the line of police. “That’s on you, mother [expletive].”

The crowd outside the tunnel then erupts into a rage, charging at police and throwing objects, including flag poles, a riot shield and what appears to be a stereo speaker.

The new video confirms the limited bodycam footage and eyewitness accounts from Jan. 6 that Boyland was crushed and trampled when the crowd was pushed out of the tunnel, then repeatedly struck by police as she lay unconscious.

The New York attorney who released the three-hour surveillance video repeated his call for a special prosecutor to investigate what went on in the Capitol tunnel.

Epoch Times Photo
A police officer holds up a stick just before striking Rosanne Boyland at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (Screen Capture/via The Epoch Times)
“My assessment is that yes, she was killed by the police,” Joseph McBride told The Epoch Times.

McBride originally called for a special prosecutor after the three-hour video showed his client, Victoria C. White, was beaten by police in the West Terrace tunnel over a four-minute period on Jan. 6. The violence against White occurred just a few minutes before Boyland entered the tunnel.

“Our relentless pursuit of truth and justice requires a special prosecutor to investigate the brutal beating of Victoria White and killing of Rosanne Boyland, who were both victims of police brutality on January 6th,” McBride said.

Witnesses have given dramatic accounts of Boyland’s last minutes of life.

“Many people were screaming that a woman was being trampled by the police. I responded as fast as I could,” witness Jonathan Mellis told investigative journalist Cara Castronuova in August 2021. “I saw her lifeless body being crushed under the officers and hit with their batons. They were kicking her viciously. I acted to get them off her. I was maced.”

Lonna Cave, Boyland’s sister, said the family is looking for answers — and to see that the officer who struck Rosanne is held to account.

“We just want to know what happened to Rosanne. There are so many questions,” Cave said in a December interview with Castronuova. “There’s video of her being beaten by a police officer after she’s already down on the ground. And then she is seen on video again shortly thereafter and the police drag her. The guys who are out there with her are doing CPR, and one of the police officers like picks up her leg and starts dragging her down the tunnel.”

A man vents his rage at police after they dragged away the dead body of Rosanne Boyland, 34, in the West Terrace tunnel at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (Screen Capture/via The Epoch Times)
Conservative activist Anderson, who was pulled unconscious from the pile of bodies, said he held onto Boyland’s hand while more and more people fell on top of them. Anderson was pulled from the pile by Jake Lang.

“After I tried saving Rosanne for about 2-3 minutes, I just couldn’t budge her. She was under too many people and she lost her life,” Lang said in a podcast interview with Jim Hoft of the news site Gateway Pundit. “She couldn’t be saved. So I moved over. I spotted Philip with his tongue hanging out the side of his mouth, completely unconscious. He was in a little bit better of a position for me to get underneath him.”

Philip Anderson is pulled unconscious from a pile of people that toppled when police pushed them from a Capitol tunnel on Jan. 6, 2021. Anderson was next to Rosanne Boyland and held her hand as she lost consciousness. (Screen Capture/U.S. Department of Justice)
Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) questioned Attorney General Merrick Garland about Boyland’s death at an October hearing on Capitol Hill. “Was a determination ever made as to who repeatedly struck Rosanne Boyland in the head with a rod before she died?” Gohmert asked.

“Again, I think this was a matter that was investigated by the U.S. Attorney’s office,” Garland said.

Cave said she wants to know why the police officer who beat her sister isn’t under investigation. “Why in this case is this policewoman not being held accountable? Why is nobody investigating her?” Cave said. “Why isn’t anybody talking about it? It’s mind boggling.”

The Epoch Times asked both the U.S. Department of Justice and the Metropolitan Police Department for comments on the circumstances of Boyland’s death, but did not receive a reply by press time.

Cave said she noticed on the videos that it wasn’t the police who came to her sister’s aid.

“It doesn’t show the police officers helping my sister whatsoever. The only people who are helping her are the guys who are sitting in jail right now.”

Joseph M. Hanneman

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Joseph Hanneman is a reporter for The Epoch Times who covers the State of Wisconsin. His work over a nearly 40-year career has appeared in Catholic World Report, the Racine Journal Times, the Wisconsin State Journal and the Chicago Tribune. Reach him at: joseph.hanneman@epochtimes.us

Critical Race Theory: Christopher F. Rufo

Critical Race Theory: What It Is and How to Fight It
March 2021 • Volume 50, Number 3 • Christopher F. Rufo
Christopher F. Rufo
Founder and Director, Battlefront

Christopher F. Rufo is founder and director of Battlefront, a public policy research center. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and a former Lincoln Fellow at the Claremont Institute for the Study of Statesmanship and Political Philosophy. As executive director at the Documentary Foundation, he has directed four films for PBS, including most recently America Lost, which explores life in Youngstown, Ohio, Memphis, Tennessee, and Stockton, California. He is also a contributing editor of City Journal, where he covers topics including critical race theory, homelessness, addiction, and crime.

The following is adapted from a lecture delivered at Hillsdale College on March 30, 2021.

Critical race theory is fast becoming America’s new institutional orthodoxy. Yet most Americans have never heard of it—and of those who have, many don’t understand it. It’s time for this to change. We need to know what it is so we can know how to fight it.
In explaining critical race theory, it helps to begin with a brief history of Marxism. Originally, the Marxist Left built its political program on the theory of class conflict. Marx believed that the primary characteristic of industrial societies was the imbalance of power between capitalists and workers. The solution to that imbalance, according to Marx, was revolution: the workers would eventually gain consciousness of their plight, seize the means of production, overthrow the capitalist class, and usher in a new socialist society.
During the 20th century, a number of regimes underwent Marxist-style revolutions, and each ended in disaster. Socialist governments in the Soviet Union, China, Cambodia, Cuba, and elsewhere racked up a body count of nearly 100 million of their own people. They are remembered for their gulags, show trials, executions, and mass starvations. In practice, Marx’s ideas unleashed man’s darkest brutalities.
By the mid-1960s, Marxist intellectuals in the West had begun to acknowledge these failures. They recoiled at revelations of Soviet atrocities and came to realize that workers’ revolutions would never occur in Western Europe or the United States, where there were large middle classes and rapidly improving standards of living. Americans in particular had never developed a sense of class consciousness or class division. Most Americans believed in the American dream—the idea that they could transcend their origins through education, hard work, and good citizenship.
But rather than abandon their Leftist political project, Marxist scholars in the West simply adapted their revolutionary theory to the social and racial unrest of the 1960s. Abandoning Marx’s economic dialectic of capitalists and workers, they substituted race for class and sought to create a revolutionary coalition of the dispossessed based on racial and ethnic categories.
Fortunately, the early proponents of this revolutionary coalition in the U.S. lost out in the 1960s to the civil rights movement, which sought instead the fulfillment of the American promise of freedom and equality under the law. Americans preferred the idea of improving their country to that of overthrowing it. The vision of Martin Luther King, Jr., President Johnson’s pursuit of the Great Society, and the restoration of law and order promised by President Nixon in his 1968 campaign defined the post-1960s American political consensus.
But the radical Left has proved resilient and enduring—which is where critical race theory comes in.
WHAT IT IS
Critical race theory is an academic discipline, formulated in the 1990s, built on the intellectual framework of identity-based Marxism. Relegated for many years to universities and obscure academic journals, over the past decade it has increasingly become the default ideology in our public institutions. It has been injected into government agencies, public school systems, teacher training programs, and corporate human resources departments in the form of diversity training programs, human resources modules, public policy frameworks, and school curricula.
There are a series of euphemisms deployed by its supporters to describe critical race theory, including “equity,” “social justice,” “diversity and inclusion,” and “culturally responsive teaching.” Critical race theorists, masters of language construction, realize that “neo-Marxism” would be a hard sell. Equity, on the other hand, sounds non-threatening and is easily confused with the American principle of equality. But the distinction is vast and important. Indeed, equality—the principle proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence, defended in the Civil War, and codified into law with the 14th and 15th Amendments, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965—is explicitly rejected by critical race theorists. To them, equality represents “mere nondiscrimination” and provides “camouflage” for white supremacy, patriarchy, and oppression.
In contrast to equality, equity as defined and promoted by critical race theorists is little more than reformulated Marxism. In the name of equity, UCLA Law Professor and critical race theorist Cheryl Harris has proposed suspending private property rights, seizing land and wealth and redistributing them along racial lines. Critical race guru Ibram X. Kendi, who directs the Center for Antiracist Research at Boston University, has proposed the creation of a federal Department of Antiracism. This department would be independent of (i.e., unaccountable to) the elected branches of government, and would have the power to nullify, veto, or abolish any law at any level of government and curtail the speech of political leaders and others who are deemed insufficiently “antiracist.”
One practical result of the creation of such a department would be the overthrow of capitalism, since according to Kendi, “In order to truly be antiracist, you also have to truly be anti-capitalist.” In other words, identity is the means and Marxism is the end.
An equity-based form of government would mean the end not only of private property, but also of individual rights, equality under the law, federalism, and freedom of speech. These would be replaced by race-based redistribution of wealth, group-based rights, active discrimination, and omnipotent bureaucratic authority. Historically, the accusation of “anti-Americanism” has been overused. But in this case, it’s not a matter of interpretation—critical race theory prescribes a revolutionary program that would overturn the principles of the Declaration and destroy the remaining structure of the Constitution.
HOW IT WORKS
What does critical race theory look like in practice? Last year, I authored a series of reports focused on critical race theory in the federal government. The FBI was holding workshops on intersectionality theory. The Department of Homeland Security was telling white employees they were committing “microinequities” and had been “socialized into oppressor roles.” The Treasury Department held a training session telling staff members that “virtually all white people contribute to racism” and that they must convert “everyone in the federal government” to the ideology of “antiracism.” And the Sandia National Laboratories, which designs America’s nuclear arsenal, sent white male executives to a three-day reeducation camp, where they were told that “white male culture” was analogous to the “KKK,” “white supremacists,” and “mass killings.” The executives were then forced to renounce their “white male privilege” and write letters of apology to fictitious women and people of color.
This year, I produced another series of reports focused on critical race theory in education. In Cupertino, California, an elementary school forced first-graders to deconstruct their racial and sexual identities, and rank themselves according to their “power and privilege.” In Springfield, Missouri, a middle school forced teachers to locate themselves on an “oppression matrix,” based on the idea that straight, white, English-speaking, Christian males are members of the oppressor class and must atone for their privilege and “covert white supremacy.” In Philadelphia, an elementary school forced fifth-graders to celebrate “Black communism” and simulate a Black Power rally to free 1960s radical Angela Davis from prison, where she had once been held on charges of murder. And in Seattle, the school district told white teachers that they are guilty of “spirit murder” against black children and must “bankrupt [their] privilege in acknowledgement of [their] thieved inheritance.”
I’m just one investigative journalist, but I’ve developed a database of more than 1,000 of these stories. When I say that critical race theory is becoming the operating ideology of our public institutions, it is not an exaggeration—from the universities to bureaucracies to k-12 school systems, critical race theory has permeated the collective intelligence and decision-making process of American government, with no sign of slowing down.
This is a revolutionary change. When originally established, these government institutions were presented as neutral, technocratic, and oriented towards broadly-held perceptions of the public good. Today, under the increasing sway of critical race theory and related ideologies, they are being turned against the American people. This isn’t limited to the permanent bureaucracy in Washington, D.C., but is true as well of institutions in the states, even in red states, and it is spreading to county public health departments, small Midwestern school districts, and more. This ideology will not stop until it has devoured all of our institutions.
FUTILE RESISTANCE
Thus far, attempts to halt the encroachment of critical race theory have been ineffective. There are a number of reasons for this.
First, too many Americans have developed an acute fear of speaking up about social and political issues, especially those involving race. According to a recent Gallup poll, 77 percent of conservatives are afraid to share their political beliefs publicly. Worried about getting mobbed on social media, fired from their jobs, or worse, they remain quiet, largely ceding the public debate to those pushing these anti-American ideologies. Consequently, the institutions themselves become monocultures: dogmatic, suspicious, and hostile to a diversity of opinion. Conservatives in both the federal government and public school systems have told me that their “equity and inclusion” departments serve as political offices, searching for and stamping out any dissent from the official orthodoxy.
Second, critical race theorists have constructed their argument like a mousetrap. Disagreement with their program becomes irrefutable evidence of a dissenter’s “white fragility,” “unconscious bias,” or “internalized white supremacy.” I’ve seen this projection of false consciousness on their opponents play out dozens of times in my reporting. Diversity trainers will make an outrageous claim—such as “all whites are intrinsically oppressors” or “white teachers are guilty of spirit murdering black children”—and then when confronted with disagreement, they adopt a patronizing tone and explain that participants who feel “defensiveness” or “anger” are reacting out of guilt and shame. Dissenters are instructed to remain silent, “lean into the discomfort,” and accept their “complicity in white supremacy.”
Third, Americans across the political spectrum have failed to separate the premise of critical race theory from its conclusion. Its premise—that American history includes slavery and other injustices, and that we should examine and learn from that history—is undeniable. But its revolutionary conclusion—that America was founded on and defined by racism and that our founding principles, our Constitution, and our way of life should be overthrown—does not rightly, much less necessarily, follow.
Fourth and finally, the writers and activists who have had the courage to speak out against critical race theory have tended to address it on the theoretical level, pointing out the theory’s logical contradictions and dishonest account of history. These criticisms are worthy and good, but they move the debate into the academic realm, which is friendly terrain for proponents of critical race theory. They fail to force defenders of this revolutionary ideology to defend the practical consequences of their ideas in the realm of politics.
POLITICAL ENGAGEMENT
No longer simply an academic matter, critical race theory has become a tool of political power. To borrow a phrase from the Marxist theoretician Antonio Gramsci, it is fast achieving “cultural hegemony” in America’s public institutions. More and more, it is driving the vast machinery of the state and society. If we want to succeed in opposing it, we must address it politically at every level.
Critical race theorists must be confronted with and forced to speak to the facts. Do they support public schools separating first-graders into groups of “oppressors” and “oppressed”? Do they support mandatory curricula teaching that “all white people play a part in perpetuating systemic racism”? Do they support public schools instructing white parents to become “white traitors” and advocate for “white abolition”? Do they want those who work in government to be required to undergo this kind of reeducation? How about managers and workers in corporate America? How about the men and women in our military? How about every one of us?
There are three parts to a successful strategy to defeat the forces of critical race theory: governmental action, grassroots mobilization, and an appeal to principle.
We already see examples of governmental action. Last year, one of my reports led President Trump to issue an executive order banning critical race theory-based training programs in the federal government. President Biden rescinded this order on his first day in office, but it provides a model for governors and municipal leaders to follow. This year, several state legislatures have introduced bills to achieve the same goal: preventing public institutions from conducting programs that stereotype, scapegoat, or demean people on the basis of race. And I have organized a coalition of attorneys to file lawsuits against schools and government agencies that impose critical race theory-based programs on grounds of the First Amendment (which protects citizens from compelled speech), the Fourteenth Amendment (which provides equal protection under the law), and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (which prohibits public institutions from discriminating on the basis of race).
On the grassroots level, a multiracial and bipartisan coalition is emerging to do battle against critical race theory. Parents are mobilizing against racially divisive curricula in public schools and employees are increasingly speaking out against Orwellian reeducation in the workplace. When they see what is happening, Americans are naturally outraged that critical race theory promotes three ideas—race essentialism, collective guilt, and neo-segregation—which violate the basic principles of equality and justice. Anecdotally, many Chinese-Americans have told me that having survived the Cultural Revolution in their former country, they refuse to let the same thing happen here.
In terms of principles, we need to employ our own moral language rather than allow ourselves to be confined by the categories of critical race theory. For example, we often find ourselves debating “diversity.” Diversity as most of us understand it is generally good, all things being equal, but it is of secondary value. We should be talking about and aiming at excellence, a common standard that challenges people of all backgrounds to achieve their potential. On the scale of desirable ends, excellence beats diversity every time.
Similarly, in addition to pointing out the dishonesty of the historical narrative on which critical race theory is predicated, we must promote the true story of America—a story that is honest about injustices in American history, but that places them in the context of our nation’s high ideals and the progress we have made towards realizing them. Genuine American history is rich with stories of achievements and sacrifices that will move the hearts of Americans—in stark contrast to the grim and pessimistic narrative pressed by critical race theorists.
Above all, we must have courage—the fundamental virtue required in our time. Courage to stand and speak the truth. Courage to withstand epithets. Courage to face the mob. Courage to shrug off the scorn of the elites. When enough of us overcome the fear that currently prevents so many from speaking out, the hold of critical race theory will begin to slip. And courage begets courage. It’s easy to stop a lone dissenter; it’s much harder to stop 10, 20, 100, 1,000, 1,000,000, or more who stand up together for the principles of America.
Truth and justice are on our side. If we can muster the courage, we will win.

Betrayal of the American People by Biden

American Thinker
February 8, 2021
The Betrayal of the American People by Biden and the Ruling Oligarchy
By Steve McCann

The Biden Administration is willfully and permanently undermining the economy and the future well-being of the citizenry as
well as trampling on the Constitution with an unprecedented avalanche of executive orders, proposed legislation and untenable
regulations. The current leader of the United States, safe in his plush bunker, is without a clue as he and his confederates in the ruling oligarchy are more interested in consolidating power and enriching themselves than they are in the long-term welfare of the nation and its citizenry.
In their mad and childish dash to purge the nation of all things associated with Donald Trump, this cabal is deliberately being oblivious to the fact that there is but one major responsibility of the leaders of a Constitutional Republic. That is to be certain their country is capable, in the both the short and long-term, of successfully weathering a worst-case scenario such as global war, a massive economic downturn, or a catastrophic natural disaster.
Those currently entrenched in the ruling oligarchy are pursuing policies that will leave no margin for error in the event of an apocalyptic natural or man-made disaster. As their fixation on climate change, purported systemic racism, unfettered
immigration and the pursuit of fictitious and unattainable societal equity will permanently damage the economy and destroy any
meaningful growth in the standard of living of the nearly all Americans.
Over the decades, this country’s enormous and ever-expanding Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has allowed government at all
levels to spend or borrow whatever monies were necessary to offset the losses from natural and man-made cataclysms and/or restart the economy after a downturn. They could do so safe in the knowledge that the GDP, thanks to the productivity and
ingenuity of the American people, would always grow and provide a consistent level of tax receipts and, in essence, collateral for borrowing. Thus, the wealth of the United States has always been the nation’s fallback position in order to come through wars and recessions or cope with natural disasters.
The probability of a major natural disaster striking a nation as large and geologically diverse as the United States is high. The country is presently experiencing the deleterious fallout from a historically minor pandemic and every year hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes cause enormous property damage and loss of life.
Over the past century the world has, on average, experienced a pandemic every 17 years. The current Chinese coronavirus
pandemic, while historically minor as compared to many previous pandemics over the centuries, has exposed the enormous cost
that would be experienced if a major viral or other outbreak occurs in the future.
In 2020 the deficit spending, almost entirely due to the coronavirus, was $3.3 Trillion and in 2021 it will be at least $3.0 Trillion, which includes Biden’s current $1.9 Trillion so-called COVID-19 relief legislation. By contrast, the accumulated national debt in the 212 years from 1790 to 2002 was $6.2 Trillion as compared to $6.3 Trillion in 2020-21alone.
If the unprecedented lockdowns and other extreme measures taken as a reaction to the Chinese coronavirus is now the template
for handling all pandemics, then what the United States will have to spend in borrowed monies for future severe pandemics will
be geometrically larger than the Covid-19 experience.
It has been predicted that California has a 99% chance of a major devastating earthquake in the next 30 years. The central part of the United States extending to the east coast, in an area that has recorded four of the largest earthquakes ever in North America, could experience a cataclysmic earthquake in the next 40 years. The cost of these events would be in the tens of Trillions of dollars.
The Chinese Communists can now deal with an American administration filled with compromised Sinophiles who, in order to
protect their personal interests, have signaled to China, that they will be more accommodating and will restore this nation’s
dependence on the emerging Chinese manufacturing monopoly. China, thus, will be emboldened to flex their economic and
military power throughout the globe as they are more determined than ever to dominate a world nearly brought to its knees by the coronavirus. In order to do so they will, in due course, initiate an inevitable military confrontation with the United States. Will this country be able to afford a dominant military and have the manufacturing capability necessary to deal with a belligerent China?
This nation has experienced, on average, a recession every 15 years over the past century. The world is today standing on the
brink of a potentially debilitating double-dip global recession thanks to ill-advised lockdowns by nearly every nation as an
overreaction to the Chinese coronavirus pandemic. With this as a backdrop, the job-killing executive orders Joe Biden has
robotically signed, profligate spending by Congress, unconstrained borrowing and de facto money creation will almost certainly
guarantee a prolonged period of severe stagflation (the coexistence of recession and inflation side by side) beginning within the next 12 months.
The U.S. national debt has grown fivefold from $5.6 Trillion in 2000 to $28 Trillion today and is now larger than the annual total value of all economic activity in the U.S. (Gross Domestic Product). It is estimated that by the end of 2025 the national debt will be approaching $40 Trillion and will be 50% larger than the projected Gross Domestic Product. The annual interest payments on this debt by 2025 will be nearly $1 Trillion or 75% of the total income taxes paid by the American people in 2020. Further, based on current spending and revenue streams, by 2040 the national debt will approach $60 to 70 Trillion or more than twice the size of the projected Gross Domestic Product.
The above does not include the impact of prolonged or deep recessions, catastrophic natural disasters, major military conflicts or the negative economic impact of the policies being pursued by the current administration.
It is now too late to solely rely on increasing tax revenue to stanch this sea of red ink. As the level of taxation required would devastate productivity and capital creation thus cratering the economy. The only viable options are severe spending restraints, minimal tax increases and most importantly expanding the economy by pursuing many of the same policies initiated by Donald Trump including confronting China and reinstituting the United States as the manufacturing capital of the world.
However, the Biden Administration, the Democrats in Congress, and their fellow-travelers in the Ruling Class are determined to
permanently stifle economic growth by their infatuation with hypothetical climate change thus undermining energy development
as well as manufacturing. They credulously claim that the theoretical green energy revolution will replace these jobs and wealth, but that will take decades if at all, and will be far too little and too late to prevent national insolvency.
Their determination to raise business taxes as well as dramatically increase job- and business formation-killing regulations is anathema to promoting growth. Their resolve to institute what is tantamount to economic central planning by the bureaucrats in Washington will cause enormous dislocation in financial resources, thus, throttling access to capital for expansion or new
business formation.
Their obsession with curtailing freedom of speech and casting anyone who disagrees with them as potential domestic terrorists
that must be muzzled and ostracized will foment ongoing societal unrest. Their plans for unconstrained immigration as well as
amnesty for millions of illegal aliens will intensify the competition for jobs and demands for welfare subsidies. Taken together these measures will further exacerbate tension within the country and undermine national confidence adding additional strain to an already shaky economy and a nation charging mindlessly into bankruptcy.
How do we pay the recovery costs associated with a catastrophic natural or man-made disaster such as a major pandemic or earthquake? From whom do we borrow the money without paying a usurious interest rate and forcing the country into further decline? Can we expect our traditional allies to come to the aid of a profligate country whose debt today accounts for 40% of all global debt and will account for nearly 60% by 2040 and whose leadership is deliberately undermining its economy?
As to a dramatic economic downturn in the future, many the traditional tools used to make certain a recession does not descend into a depression will not be available.
Would the holders of the bonds of the United States concur with significant tax reductions to spur the economy or would they agree to finance more debt as a stimulus and at what interest rate and collateral?
Would the United States choose as an alternative the printing of vast quantities of dollars? Which would devalue the currency
and, thus, the debt. But risking hyper-inflation and a likely repeat of the devastating experience within the Weimar Republic
(Germany) in the 1920’s. A strategy which could ultimately plunge the citizenry into a dramatically reduced standard of living, massive unemployment and violent societal upheaval.
If the United States continues on its present course, these are the only choices the country will have, yet never in the history of this nation have we had an administration, a political party and a ruling elite willingly placing their self-serving agenda ahead of the survival of the United States. This borders on treachery of the worst sort as it violates the allegiance owed by our elected leaders to preserve and protect the long-term welfare and well-being of the people and the nation.

“One Free Shave……”

One Free Shave Is the Tradition For President Biden
By CONRAD BLACK, Special to the Sun | January 23, 2021

Some have been more vociferous in their criticism of Joe Biden than I have, but few have been more consistent. I’ve never forgiven him for what he did to my friend Robert Bork in 1987, a great man who would have been an outstanding Supreme Court justice. Mr. Biden, as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, appeared to be ready to support the former solicitor general until Teddy Kennedy gave his infamous address, including his defamatory accusation that Robert Bork’s America would reduce American women to back-alley abortions, among other conjured degradations.

Click Images for Slideshow

It is hard to take seriously an incoming president when one of his previous campaigns for the Democratic presidential nomination folded before he reached the plateau of two percent support because he was caught red-handed cribbing from an absurd campaign platitude authored by one of 20th-century Britain’s least successful opposition leaders, Neil Kinnock.

It is disconcerting that any president-elect manufactures his academic career and invents episodes of arrest in South Africa, especially in the context of attempting to visit Nelson Mandela 600 miles from where his brief alleged detention took place. In 50 years of public life, he has faced in all four directions on every issue and is not strongly identified with any particular major achievement.

No one qualified to do so has contradicted former defense secretary and CIA director Robert Gates, who served presidents of both parties in high office, when he remarked, after writing that Joe Biden, although a pleasant and generous-hearted man, had been mistaken on every foreign and strategic policy subject of the last 30 years.

I respect everyone’s religious views from committed atheism to fervent practice, and almost all sides of the abortion issue, apart from opinions that are insane or sociopathic, but as a devoted but tolerant Roman Catholic I find it annoying that Joe Biden has portrayed himself as a pious co-religionist, even as he approved the prosecution of the Little Sisters of the Poor for declining to pay for the abortions and other birth control requirements of those in their charge or employment.

Before this column metamorphoses into one of goodwill and hopefulness for the president-elect, I must add that Mr. Biden can hardly be completely absolved from what I believe has been a scandalous but successful campaign for the presidency. The Democratic Party elders, to prevent a presidential candidacy of the unfeasibly and abrasively socialistic Senator Bernie Sanders, retrieved Joe Biden from the ditch where the early Democratic primary voters had left him, installed him as the candidate, and placed him, like the groom on the top of the wedding cake, atop a Sanders socialist platform.

The Democratic strategists saw at once the potential to reverse President Trump’s clear lead in the polls after the impeachment fiasco almost a year ago by terrorizing the living Jehovah out of the entire population over COVID-19. President Trump’s tactical bungling of the public relations effort surrounding the virus made their task easier.

But Mr. Biden’s masked self-captivity in his basement, his inarticulation contending with the background noise of what he called “Canadian geese,” while the Democrats’ lackeys in the national political media and the totalitarian czars of the Big Tech cartel conducted his campaign for him and silenced and defamed his enemies, and dismissed a grand jury investigation of the Biden family’s international financial activities as “Russian disinformation” was a shabby campaign.

It was perhaps the least creditable Democratic presidential campaign since General George B. McClellan, whom President Lincoln had fired for his diffident performance as commander of the Army of the Potomac, ran against Lincoln on a defeatist Civil War platform in 1864, even as General Sherman occupied Atlanta and General Grant invested Richmond.

Having got all that off my chest, it is time, while contemplating Lincoln, to “take increased devotion” from Herblock’s famous cartoon of Richard Nixon on the eve of his inauguration in 1969. The political cartoonist had been in the habit of portraying Nixon with a stubbly and rodentine face often emerging from under a manhole cover, because of Nixon’s former zeal as an anti-Communist congressman and senator. As his inauguration approached, and Tom Wicker wrote in the New York Times that the chances were 50-50 that Nixon would blow up the world, Herblock decided every new president of the United States should get a free shave.

Everyone who wishes America well, and even those who only hope that America does well enough to spare the world the terrible challenge of having China as its most powerful nation — potentially the first one with no Judeo-Christian background nor any demonstrated respect for human rights or civil liberties since the rise of the nation-state — all must always hope that an incoming president of the United States is successful.

In this case, there is no doubt that the new president is an amiable personality, a sincerely patriotic American, and fundamentally a man of moderation, ideologically more like President Clinton than President Obama; Vice Presidents Humphrey and Mondale more than Senator McGovern. He is a survivor, and that is a remarkable achievement: as Tennyson wrote, “old age hath yet his honor and his toil.”

Joe Biden has persevered through long years of comparative obscurity, family tragedy, his full share of condescension, disparagement, and setbacks, and the American political system assures that no one moves into the White House without a considerable combination of perseverance, acuity, and good fortune. As Napoleon famously said, “The best generals are the luckiest generals.”

There is some political symmetry in Mr. Biden’s elevation. The greatest single problem with the Trump Administration was the endless controversy; the president was constantly in the face of the public and of the world, all day every day and all night on Twitter. (The czar of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, may have done Mr. Trump a favor dictatorially removing him from his platform — the outgoing president’s popularity will rise if the country can take a rest from him for a while.)

America’s greatest political desire was greater quiet and “normalcy” in Washington. In this way, the system has worked, as we are moving from a human tornado to the most languid chief executive since Calvin Coolidge.

Sometimes a change is as good as a rest. Although Joe Biden is a waffler and schmoozer, all indications are that he is a genuine man of the center comfortable and very competent at negotiating with reasonable people in both parties, and a capable judge of what can be achieved within the system where he has operated skillfully for many decades. Since he is unlikely to covet a second term, he can make arrangements with the Republican leaders in the Congress, most of whom are his friends, without feeling unduly threatened by the far Left within his own party.

It was a terrible campaign following an awful summer of riots, hypocrisy, and fear-mongering, and concluding in the most suspect presidential election result in American history. In its ineluctable fashion, the system has produced the 44th direct successor to General George Washington in what has long been the world’s most influential office. Those who value freedom in every land will wish him well. Hail to the chief and may God renew His blessing on America.

________

CMBLetters@gmail.com. From American Greatness.

China recolonize Africa- active coal fired power plants

China recolonizes Africa
Western policies damage Africa and the planet, kill millions, and open doors to China
Duggan Flanakin
Joe Biden has pledged that one of his first acts as President will be rejoining the Paris Climate Treaty – which gives China a complete pass on reducing emissions until at least 2030. Even Biden’s designated “climate envoy,” former Secretary of State John Kerry, says the existing treaty “has to be stronger,” but then claims China will somehow become an active partner, instead of the competitor and adversary it clearly is. His rationale: “Climate is imperative, it’s as imperative for China as it is for us.”
As to China employing more Green technology and abiding by (much less strengthening) the Paris agreement, the evidence is at best spotty, at worst completely the opposite. President Trump pulled the United States out of Paris, but between January 2017 and May 2019 the US had shuttered 50 coal-fired power plants, with 51 more shutdowns announced, bringing the total shutdowns to 289 (330 once announced shutdowns also take place) since 2010, soon leaving under 200 still operating.
Meanwhile, as of 2019, China had 2,363 active coal-fired power plants and was building another 1,171 in the Middle Kingdom – plus hundreds more in Africa, Asia and elsewhere. A CO2 Coalition white paper by Kathleen Hartnett White and Caleb Rossiter reveals that China now has modern pollutant-scrubbing technology on over 80% of its coal-fired power plants, but no scrubbers at any Chinese-built coal-fired power plants in Africa (or likely anywhere else) – and none anywhere that remove carbon dioxide.
Harvard University China specialist Edward Cunningham says China is building, planning or financing more than 300 coal plants, in places as widespread as Turkey, Egypt, Vietnam, Indonesia, Bangladesh and the Philippines. India, South Korea, Japan, South Africa and even Germany are also building hundreds of coal-fired power plants. No matter how many the USA closes down, it won’t make any global difference.
Boston University data indicate that China has invested over $50 billion in building new coal plants overseas in recent years, and over a quarter of new coal plants outside the Middle Kingdom have some commitment or offer of funds from Chinese financial institutions.
“Why is China placing a global bet on coal?” NPR wonders. That’s a 40 or even 50-year commitment, the life span of coal-fired units. The NPR authors even quote the Stinson Center think tank’s Southeast Asia analyst, who says “it’s not clear when you look at the actual projects China is funding that they are truly Green.” They’re obviously notgreen, and more is obviously going on than their poor eyesight can perceive.
China knows it and the world will need oil, natural gas and coal for decades to come. It sees “green” as the color of money and is happy to extend credit under terms very favorable to China. Communist Party leaders seek global military and economic power – and global control of electricity generation, raw materials extraction, and manufacturing of wind turbines, solar panels and battery modules they will sell to address the West’s obsession with the “manmade climate crisis” and “renewable, sustainable” energy.
Party leaders also know its production of “green” technologies is a good smokescreen for all this coal power – and few Western governments will dare to criticize China sharply over this or Covid.
A recent Global Warming Policy Foundation report lambasts environmentalists (like John Kerry) as “useful idiots” who “praise the scale of Chinese ambition on climate change, while paying lip service in criticizing China’s massive coal expansion.” It notes that China rarely honors its international agreements and has no intention of reducing fossil fuel consumption.
But what are Africa and other developing nations to do? The West will not fund even clean coal projects that would eliminate pollution from dung and wood fires, while providing reliable, affordable electricity for lights, refrigerators, schools, shops, hospitals, factories and much more. China will – and despite the heavy price, their demand for energy requires that they get electricity by any means necessary.
With 1.1 billion people, Sub-Saharan Africa remains the world’s poorest region, despite massive mineral resources and a young, energetic population with an affinity for entrepreneurship. Dutch economist Wim Naudé says Africa must industrialize, which means it must have affordable, reliable electricity, if it is to overcome poverty and disease, create jobs and discourage terrorism.
Unfortunately, outrageously, US, EU, UN and World Bank policies have stymied African energy resource development. As White and Rossiter note, US policies since the Obama era oppose Africans using the continent’s abundant coal and gas to fuel power plants, on the ground that carbon dioxide from fossil fuels might exacerbate climate change.
African Energy Chamber executive chairman NJ Ayuk recently reported that the United Kingdom has also decided it will stop funding new oil, gas and coal projects as of November 4, 2021, the fifth anniversary of the Paris treaty. The decision kowtows to Green opposition to UK Export Finance support for a Mozambique terminal to export low-CO2 emissions liquefied natural gas.
Ayuk had been touting natural gas as an increasing option for African power plants, boasting that Africa is home to four of the world’s top 20 crude oil producers (Nigeria, Angola, Algeria and Libya); Algeria and Nigeria are among the top 20 natural gas producers; and Mozambique also has huge gas reserves.
“It is troubling,” Ayuk said, “that an aggressive foreign-funded anti-African energy campaign continues to undermine the potential of making Mozambique an oasis for gas monetization and meeting our increasing energy demands.” Despite this setback, he continued, “we must continue to be unwavering in our commitment to stand up for Africa’s energy sector, its workers, reducing energy poverty, and those free-market values that will make our continent attractive to committed energy investors.”
In much of Africa, electricity demand far outstrips supply. “In factories, businesses, government buildings and wealthy neighborhoods in every African country,” White and Rossiter observe, a cacophonous symphony of soot-spewing backup diesel engines erupts when the grid goes down, which is usually every day.” In fact, says the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation, many African countries spend more on dirty backup power than on electricity for the grid itself; in West Africa, backup kilowatts equal 40% of total grid kilowatts.
In Sudan, which gets 30% of its energy from dams on the Nile River, diesel-based pumps run constantly to lift river water for irrigation, even at the confluence of the Blue and White Niles. In Nigeria, hotels ban guests from jogging because of health dangers from breathing soot from their diesel backup generators, which kick in repeatedly as neighborhoods go dark. In Southern Africa, construction sites simply run generators all day, filling nearby streets with noxious clouds. Universities rely on diesels to run old, inefficient air conditioning units.
White and Rossiter note that American clean coal technology, exemplified by the Turk power plant in Arkansas, virtually eliminates health hazards from sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and particulates. They urge the U.S. to support proposals by African governments to import this technology, noting that electricity is “the central nervous system of a modern economy and modern life expectancy. Africa’s electricity deficit translates directly into its life-expectancy deficit of 15 years per person.”
Millions die needlessly every year, from countless diseases of energy and economic poverty.
But under a Biden-Harris Administration, with John Kerry at the forefront, there is little hope that these African and other pleas will be heard. With European allies in myopic puritanical lockstep, China will continue to get a total pass on complying with Green demands – and will have free rein to turn sub-Saharan Africa into a giant Chinese colony, despite the environmental damage, monstrous debt, slave and child labor under horrific workplace conditions, and likely modest benefits to Africans.
It is eco-imperialism and eco-manslaughter at its worst. Where are the vaunted guardians of climate and environmental justice?

Duggan Flanakin is Director of Policy Research at the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (www.CFACT.org)

Breaking China

Breaking China
With American help, the Communist regime has grown richer and more oppressive
 
 
12/11/19
 
Illustration on Chinese ill-gotten gains by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times more >
 
Suppose you had a neighbor who beat his wife, abused his children, engaged in violent crimes, and routinely burgled your home. Would you invite him for Sunday brunch? Go into business with him? Share a bungalow at the beach? I don’t think so. So why are we still pretending that China is just one trade agreement away from becoming anything other than the nation-state version of the odious character I’ve described above?
 
Here’s an incomplete list of the nefarious activities undertaken by the ruling Communist Party of China: incarcerating Muslim Uighurs in “re-education” camps; colonizing Tibet; organ-harvesting from prisoners of conscience; suppressing the people of Hong Kong in violation of treaty obligations; stealing hundreds of billions of dollars of American intellectual property, including defense secrets year after year; forcing American corporations to kowtow and self-censor; proliferating nuclear weapons and ballistic missile technology; pursuing exploitative and neo-imperialist policies in Asia, Africa and Latin America; and building up its military capabilities with the goal of intimidating and ultimately defeating the United States.
 
America’s China policy – based on engagement and conciliation — traces back to the Nixon administration. To be fair, in the midst of the Cold War with the Soviet Union, Sino-American detente brought some benefits. But there also was this: Republicans and Democrats alike believed that by helping China get richer, we’d help China to liberalize.
 
Economic growth, we reasoned, would birth a burgeoning bourgeoisie that would demand political power and increased freedom. Rulers would respond by giving the people what they want – slowly perhaps, but surely. Over time, China would become a responsible member of the “international community.”
 
It was a lovely theory, but it’s been conclusively disproven by realty. Xi Jinping is the most totalitarian Chinse ruler since Mao Zedong. And China did not become capitalist as has been widely believed. Instead, it developed a mercantilist brand of socialism, substituting state control of the means of production for state ownership of the means of production, while mandating “military-civil fusion.” I think the term is self-explanatory.
 
Give credit where credit is due: Unlike his predecessors, President Trump recognized the growing menace China’s rulers now pose. Mr. Trump’s National Security Strategy, written when Gen. H.R. McMaster was his national security advisor, states plainly that China is a “revisionist” power that regards the U.S. as its geopolitical rival, a challenge to which the U.S. must respond with more than hope for change.
 
The NSS warns that China uses “implied military threats to persuade other states to heed its political and security agenda,” and is increasingly engaging in “cyber-enabled economic warfare,” a phrase coined by Samantha Ravich, my colleague at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. CEEW implies the use of high-technology weapons to debilitate America economically in order to cripple America militarily.
 
Which leads us to two questions. First: Is there a moral case for continuing to intertwine our economy with China’s, for helping the regime prosper? My answer: clearly not. Second: Would it be easy and painless to decouple the U.S. economy from China’s? My answer to that also would be no.
 
However, James Rickards, a longtime advisor on international economics and financial threats to the Department of Defense and intelligence community has a different answer: “So what?”
In an email conversation with me, he wrote: “What price do we put on the lives of innocent victims of state torture, murder and thought control? At some point you just have to walk away. If Apple’s earnings per share take a hit, too bad.”
Upon further reflection, he added: “Maybe it won’t be deleterious. If cutting ties means we don’t lose $300 billion per year in intellectual property theft, don’t lose jobs to slave labor, don’t enrich an atheistic Communist elite, don’t cede control of the 21st century, and don’t let China trigger a new global financial crisis, then that seems entirely positive for the U.S. economy. This does not mean we can’t do trade deals, but the deals should be bilateral and drive a hard bargain.”
 
Policy makers are not the only ones who should be pondering this moral/economic dilemma. Consumers, too, might want to think twice before buying products made in China. And in a New York Times op-ed last week, the American Enterprise Institute’s Danielle Pletka and Derek Scissors noted: “American financial heavyweights and pension funds have in recent years shunned fossil fuels, guns and other investments on ethical grounds. Yet when it comes to providing capital to Chinese companies — including those directly engaged in surveillance or supporting the People’s Liberation Army — many haven’t resisted investment.”
 
If the U.S. were to make clear that China’s access to American consumers and investors is now in jeopardy, might the regime change its behavior? Mr. Rickards contends that while China may appear to be “a monolithic juggernaut,” in reality it is a “fragile construct that could descend into chaos.” Do China’s rulers secretly agree? Were we to start cutting them off, we might find out.
 
That said, transforming hostile actors into peaceful, prosperous and cooperative neighbors is no mean feat. Consider Russia, North Korea, Iran, Cuba. What should be less difficult: recognizing when policies have produced unintended and deleterious consequences, and altering course.
 
One strategic rule by now should be obvious: Do not enrich thine enemy. Or, to paraphrase a quote attributed to Lenin: Don’t sell your enemy the rope with which to hang you, or let him steal from you the technology for building gallows.
 
Clifford D. May is founder and president of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) and a columnist for the Washington Times.
 
 

United States National Security and Aid for Israel

Democratic Frontrunners Are Wrong About Aid for Israel

Putting America’s annual $3.8 billion of military assistance to Israel on the chopping block makes for good politics.

But it makes no sense for U.S. national security.

 BY JOHN HANNAH

DECEMBER 11, 2019

 https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/12/11/democratic-frontrunners-are-wrong-about-aid-for-israel/

In a jarring moment during last month’s Democratic primary debate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, asked about Washington’s complicated relationship with Riyadh, lit into the Saudis for the murder of the U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi, condemning the kingdom as a brutal, misogynistic dictatorship that “is not a reliable ally.” Then, without skipping a beat, he pivoted to an attack on Israel for its mistreatment of the Palestinians, particularly in Gaza—a tack that won a spontaneous outburst of applause from the attending audience. Seamlessly lumping together the Middle East’s only stable democracy with its most reactionary absolute monarchy, Sanders concluded, “we need to be rethinking who our allies are around the world.”

Of course, harsh criticism of Israel has long been a staple of the Sanders playbook. A tad more disconcerting was the apparent approval it triggered in the crowd. Condemnations by other candidates earlier in the evening of dangerous U.S. adversaries such as China, North Korea, and Russia didn’t seem to elicit nearly the same level of enthusiasm. Also hard not to notice was the fact that none of Sanders’s nine rivals on the stage rose to push back against the suggestion that the long-standing U.S. alliance with Israel should be up for reassessment. This was especially striking because in the days leading up to the debate, the Gaza-based Palestinian terrorist group Islamic Jihad had fired close to 500 rockets at Israeli population centers, sending tens of thousands of civilians into bomb shelters and shutting down schools and businesses in Tel Aviv, the country’s most important commercial hub.

In fairness, it’s possible that the format and rhythm of the debate simply didn’t allow for that type of intervention. On the other hand, it’s becoming increasingly obvious that, when it comes to Israel, a shift is indeed afoot in the Democratic Party—at least among its more progressive and activist base.

That trend was most visible in October, when several Democratic candidates in succession—including leading contenders such as Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg—joined Sanders in advocating for the position that the United States should consider withholding military aid if Israel pursued policies that undermined a two-state solution. Only one of the top-tier candidates, former Vice President Joe Biden, spoke out forcefully against the idea, calling it “absolutely outrageous” and a “gigantic mistake.”

Biden is right. It may increasingly be the case in today’s Democratic Party that putting America’s annual $3.8 billion of military assistance to Israel on the chopping block in service to the peace process makes for good politics. But it makes no sense as national security policy. The fact is that Israel’s recent emergence as one of the world’s most powerful industrial democracies has never been more important to the United States. And the value to U.S. interests of Israel’s world-class military, intelligence prowess, and cutting-edge science and technology sector is only likely to grow in the future.

In the last three presidential elections, the U.S. public—frustrated and weary from fighting so-called endless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan—has consistently supported the candidate (Barack Obama twice, Donald Trump once) who exhibited the greatest enthusiasm for reducing the country’s military commitments in the Middle East.Especially as the United States’ own dependence on oil exports from the region continues to decline, the long-term trajectory of U.S. retrenchment seems almost certain to continue. For its part, the U.S. military is also looking to draw back from the Middle East so it can divert more of its capabilities and energies to higher-priority missions, in particular the need to counter increasingly aggressive great-power competitors, China and Russia.

Yet even as it seeks to reduce its burdens, the United States still has important interests in the Middle East that need defending. It wants the region to be more stable. It wants to avoid significant disruptions in oil supplies that could wreak havoc on the economies of key trading partners. It wants to contain Iranian aggression, combat Islamist terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, deter the outbreak of major war, and ensure Israel’s security. Logic dictates that doing all that with less U.S. involvement means someone else will have to step up to help fill the void. That, in turn, puts a premium on reliable local allies that have both the will and the capability not just to defend themselves without the United States riding to the rescue but also to act effectively on their own across the Middle East to help advance major U.S. interests. With all due respect to Washington’s other longtime partners in the region and even Europe, it’s patently obvious that only one country comes close to meeting those criteria today: Israel.

Israel has, by an order of magnitude, the most powerful and operationally effective military in the Middle East. Its intelligence services rank among the world’s best, far outpacing any regional rival. It’s a technological superpower with leading research and development capabilities in priority national security areas for the United States, including cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, unmanned systems, missile defense, space, and anti-terrorism. Israel’s assessment of the most serious threats to Middle East security is nearly identical to Washington’s. And its government and population are unwaveringly pro-American, ready and willing to lend Israel’s full support to countering shared threats and securing key U.S. objectives.

With little fanfare, Israel in recent years has taken on sustained military missions that extend well beyond its historical preoccupation with the defense of its immediate borders. As Washington’s stomach for wielding hard power against the Middle East’s most dangerous challenges recedes, the new reality is that Israel has become a major exporter of security and extended deterrence to the broader region. Since at least 2017, it has been the only power in the world conducting regular military operations to push back successfully against Iranian forces and their expansionist designs. A kind of de facto division of labor has emerged whereby the United States restricts itself to punishing Iran and its regional proxies with harsh economic sanctions while Israel does the more difficult and dangerous work of directly confronting and containing Iranian power on the ground.

In Syria, probably the Middle East’s most strategically consequential battlefield of the past decade, Israel has reportedly attacked more than 1,000 targets affiliated with Iran. Almost singlehandedly, in fact, Israel has foiled Iran’s ambition to entrench itself militarily in Syria. Iran’s far-reaching plan to establish a series of land and naval bases, command a force of up to 100,000 pro-Iran fighters, and stockpile and deploy thousands of highly accurate rockets and missiles in Syria has been stillborn. Though garnering little attention, Israel has over the past four years inflicted one of the worst defeats ever suffered by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and its imperial project to dominate the Middle East’s northern tier from Tehran to the Mediterranean Sea. The IRGC’s goal of replicating in Syria the same level of military power and threat that it built in Lebanon through Hezbollah has been almost completely thwarted by a sustained campaign of discreet Israeli military attacks and intelligence activities—all without triggering a larger war and conflagration. The United States—not to mention Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and much of the rest of the region threatened by rising Iranian hegemony—has quietly applauded from the sidelines without having to put any of its own forces at risk.

Though on a far lesser scale, Israel has over the last year extended its targeting campaign against Iran to Lebanon and Iraq as well, as the IRGC seeks to adjust for its failure in Syria by further building up its capabilities in those countries, especially by giving precision missiles to Hezbollah and Iraqi Shiite militias. In Egypt, an under-the-radar but extensive program of Israeli military and intelligence support has proved essential to preventing extremist groups loyal to the Islamic State from taking over the strategically vital Sinai Peninsula. Israel has long played a similarly critical role in bolstering the security of neighboring Jordan. Meanwhile, in the eastern Mediterranean, as the region’s massive gas reserves become an increasingly important factor in global energy markets, Israeli defense capabilities will play a leading role in securing the area’s critical infrastructure, in cooperation with other stakeholders including Cyprus, Egypt, and Greece.

There’s every reason to believe that the demand for Israeli security assistance will only increase as U.S. disengagement continues apace. Already, it seems a near certainty that Israel is engaged in unprecedented, albeit covert, cooperation with several Gulf states, including the Saudis, to help them counter Iran and other extremist threats. Given the direct impact on its own interests, it’s easy to imagine Israel taking on much greater responsibilities for policing the Red Sea, or ensuring that Houthi rebels in Yemen don’t become the next repository of long-range Iranian missiles and drones capable of accurately striking strategic targets not only in Riyadh and Abu Dhabi, but in Tel Aviv and Haifa as well.

In the 1970s, the administration of U.S. President Richard Nixon, preoccupied with the war in Vietnam, developed a “twin pillars” strategy for the Middle East. It relied on two local allies, the shah’s Iran and Saudi Arabia, to help counter Soviet meddling and enforce regional security. The strategy quickly crumbled when the shah was overthrown and the Saudis proved both unwilling and for the most part incapable of fulfilling their assigned role.

By contrast, Israel today is the real deal, a stable democracy and longtime ally that has consistently demonstrated the will, power, and operational effectiveness to do more to secure the Middle East from common threats, so the United States can do less. From countering Iranian imperialism and Islamist terrorism to protecting energy resources and vulnerable regional allies, Israel’s role in the region has become critically important for the United States. At a time when war fatigue and other global priorities are driving Washington to reduce its involvement in the Middle East, it’s increasingly apparent that Israeli power will be indispensable if the United States hopes to maintain a regional order that favors its interests.

In other words, Israel is America’s new pillar in the Middle East. Truth be told, it’s the only pillar. To jeopardize such a strategic asset on the altar of a Palestinian conflict that has dragged on chronically for decades, with no resolution in sight and the issue’s relative geopolitical significance in steep decline, would be a huge unforced error. Many of Washington’s most important Arab partners are now moving systematically to deepen their security cooperation with Israel, refusing to allow their national interests to be subjugated to one of the world’s most intractable disputes any longer. It would be an odd time for the United States to start moving in the opposite direction, as several of the Democratic candidates suggest, and throw into question its own tremendously beneficial defense relationship with Israel. That’s precisely the kind of strategic indulgence that a superpower bent on retrenchment can ill afford.

John Hannah is a senior counselor at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, focusing on U.S. strategy. During the presidency of George W. Bush, he served for eight years on the staff of Vice President Cheney, including as the vice president’s national security advisor.

 

 

 

Justice Triumphant: Clarence Thomas

 

 

Justice triumphant

The story of an American who overcame should be told around the world

 

By Clifford D. May

 

11/13/19

 

Clarence Thomas illustration by Linas Garsys more >

 

A black man, born into a dirt-poor family in a dirt-poor town in the deep and segregated south beats the odds, the obstacles and the bigots to become one of America’s most consequential legal thinkers, and an authority on the Founders’ vision. You might expect such a story to be told in every grade school and college in the country.

You’d be wrong. I’d wager that most young people, black or white, know little or nothing about the man to whom I’m referring. Of those who do, most probably don’t admire him. Many would revile him.

 

Their minds might be changed were they to watch the soon-to-be-released documentary:“Created Equal: Clarence Thomas in His Own Words.”

 

At the preview I attended last week, the audience was moved to tears, laughter and a standing ovation. Yes, it was a conservative audience. But “We Shall Overcome,” was the anthem of the American Civil Rights Movement. And Clarence Thomas overcame. Big time. Americans, wherever they stand politically, should be inspired by that.

 

In this simple and elegant film, Justice Thomas looks into the camera and talks, responding to questions – prompts, really — from director Michael Pack. Mr. Thomas’ wife, Ginni, also provides recollections. Helping to tell the tale are news clips, archival materials, and marvelous photography of the Georgia low country.

 

Clarence Thomas was born in 1948, in Pin Point, an isolated settlement southeast of Savannah founded by freed slaves after the Civil War. Few in the community could read and write. Most spoke only Gullah, a creole of English and West African languages. Gullah was Mr. Thomas’ first language.

 

When Clarence was just two, his father abandoned the family. He, his brother and their mother lived in a rundown shack with no plumbing. After that burned down, the children went to live with their maternal grandfather who was tough, ornery and disciplined, and earned a living delivering oil and coal.

 

He sent Clarence to a segregated Catholic school. The nuns were caring and strict. He went on to enroll in a seminary but was disappointed by the church’s stance on civil rights, and the racism of some of his fellow seminarians. One reacted to the shooting of Martin Luther King Jr. by saying: “That’s good. I hope the son of a bitch dies.”

 

Clarence dropped out, much to the chagrin of his grandfather for whom quitting was a sin. In 1968, however, he won a scholarship to the College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts. There, he joined the Black Power Movement and became a man of the radical left. But he did well academically and was accepted at Yale Law School.

 

His politics evolved. Among the reasons: He came to see “affirmative action” more as a stigma than a benefit, a reason for his achievements to be discounted. He regarded the battles that began in 1974 over busing as senseless because Boston’s public schools – white-only and black-only – were low-quality, a problem the political elites chose to ignore.

 

After earning his law degree he was hired by John Danforth, then the attorney general of Missouri, later a U.S. Senator. That led to positions in the Reagan administration, and then a judgeship on the U.S. Court of Appeals. In 1991, President George H.W. Bush nominated Judge Thomas to the Supreme Court.

 

Four years earlier, leftist activists and their congressional allies had blocked Robert H. Bork’s appointment through an orchestrated campaign of vilification. Among the patently false accusations: that Judge Bork supported “segregated lunch counters.” (You’ll now find the verb “to bork” in the Oxford English Dictionary.)

 

The nomination of a black conservative was even more intolerable to those activists than Judge Bork’s had been. At first, Judge Thomas was attacked for his commitment to natural law, judicial restraint and originalism. The underlying objection: that he might not uphold Roe v. Wade.

 

When this approach didn’t produce the desired results, Anita Hill, a law professor who had once been his deputy, came forward to charge that he had “used work situations to discuss sex.”

 

In televised hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee, which included Joseph Biden and Edward Kennedy, Mr. Thomas furiously denied the charge, and accused his accusers of organizing “a high-tech lynching for uppity blacks who in any way deign to think for themselves, to do for themselves, to have different ideas.”

 

Polls showed the public believing Mr. Thomas over Ms. Hill 2-to-1. The Senate went on to confirm him 52 to 48.

 

At this point, you may be thinking: “Hey, Cliff! You write about foreign affairs! How is this relevant?” My answer: The United States is not exactly excelling in public diplomacy these days. (Note: I’m not weighing in on who’s to blame). So my counsel to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is to instruct every ambassador around the world to screen this film for local audiences.

 

He also should commission Mr. Pack to make a second documentary, one in which Justice Thomas speaks at greater length about his jurisprudence and his commitment to the Founders’ principles, making clear why George Will recently called Justice Thomas “America’s indispensable constitutionalist.” Such a film should be shown in universities abroad, especially in what we hopefully call the developing world.

 

“Created Equal” is the story of one exceptional American, but it’s also a story about America, a still-exceptional nation, one that, for all its many faults, provides unparalleled opportunity for those willing to work hard to overcome whatever and whomever they find in their way. Americans, wherever they stand politically, should be proud of that.

 

Clifford D. May is founder and president of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) and a columnist for the Washington Times.

 

 

The Washington Times: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/nov/12/clarence-thomas-an-exceptional-american-who-defied/

 

Pundicity: http://www.pundicity.com/

FDD: www.defenddemocracy.org