Taliban and ISIS

ISIS has expanded the systematic destruction of Iraq’s cultural treasures. In Mosul, the tomb of Jonah, revered by Judaism, Christianity, and Islam alike, has been “turned…to sand” by ISIS explosives placed so as to achieve the barbarity in one explosion.   The Nabi Younes Mosque which housed the shrine also has been destroyed.

This gang has been systematically destroying all of the shrines and graves in the territory it has seized from Iraq, under the claimed…theory…that it’s unholy to worship at such things or to venerate anyone but Mohammed. On the other hand, they also find it convenient simply to rob from valuable collections of antiquities, such as the Mosul Museum.

What is the Obama Administration’s Goal?

[T]he [UN] Security Council adopted the presidential statement calling for an “immediate and unconditional humanitarian cease-fire….”

This is the second Security Council cease-fire resolution in the last few days that the US has supported. Such cease fires plainly are one-sided. On the one hand, they allow the terrorists breathing time during which to rearm, refit, and replace their combat losses, at least to an extent. On the other hand, they provide no benefit to the Israelis; rather, they actively harm the Israeli effort by interrupting, if not breaking, IDF momentum.

The Progressive Second Economic Bill of Rights

Here they are, via CatholicVote.org.

1. We believe that Wall Street needs stronger rules and tougher enforcement, and we’re willing to fight for it.

Because We Know Better than you. A free market can’t possibly be as good as government; we citizens acting on our own imperatives in that free market just aren’t smart enough to act without Big Government oversight.

Certainly, a case can be made for tougher enforcement of existing law. However, we have enough such laws and rules; we don’t need more. Indeed, enforcement would get much simpler were the extraneous laws and rules—vis., Dodd-Frank’s rules regarding who is allowed to extend credit, and the requirements that must be met independently of the terms freely agreed by the participants to the contract—rescinded.

Paul Ryan’s Expanding Opportunity in America

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s “Expanding Opportunity in America” proposal can be seen in full here. I’ll only comment on parts of it in this post.

On the 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty, then, we should reexamine the federal government’s role. For too long, the federal government has tried to supplant, and not to support, the people fighting poverty on the front lines—families, neighborhoods, community groups. In the fight against poverty, the people ultimately are the vanguard, and government is the rearguard. Government protects the supply lines. But it is the people themselves who take to the front lines.

False Tax Premises

Edward Kleinbard, a USC law professor, had some thoughts on tax inversions, the process whereby a domestic company merges into a foreign company and moves its headquarters to that foreign company’s domicile in order to avoid high domestic taxes. The subject has come up in the last few weeks in the context of US companies doing the inversions. Dr Kleinbard, though, is proceeding from some false premises.

He argues, for instance,

Firms that invert argue that the deals are…harmless to US tax-revenue collection, and a necessary response to our anticompetitive world-wide corporate tax system. ["Harmless" is] demonstrably false…..

The Border Children Crisis

The president of the United States is the world’s sugar daddy and that has to stop. That’s the incentive for those kids to come here” protested Congressman Mo Brooks (R, AL) one of the most-conservative voices in the House. “To spend billions of dollars on foreign children that we don’t have is financial insanity.”

As someone noted earlier, the House should appropriate the funds, or most of them, with suitable spending reduction offsets, and with the vast bulk of the funds block granted to the border states for their use in dealing with the crisis and with border control, and the remainder allocated to the Federal government for the mandated purpose of transporting the present children back to their countries of origin.

Amnesty and Rights

Attorney General Eric Holder now is claiming amnesty to be both a civil and a human right. In his rambling way, he makes says this [emphasis in the cite]:

Creating a pathway to earned citizenship for the 11 million unauthorized immigrants in this country is essential. The way we treat our friends and neighbors who are undocumented—by creating a mechanism for them to earn citizenship and move out of the shadows—transcends the issue of immigration status. This is a matter of civil and human rights.

A Thought from the Border Crisis and Immigration Generally

…it’s not limited to those topics, but it was triggered by a quote by Dr Manny Alvarez in his piece about the bias of the Latino press in its coverage of the current children border crisis. What Alvarez said was this:

The crisis reminds me of that old saying: “Give a man a fish, and he’ll eat for a day; teach a man to fish, and he’ll eat for a lifetime.”

Alvarez offered this aphorism in the context of needing to address the root cause of the crisis, not merely treat the symptom that is what the crisis is.

UN Involvement in the Israeli/Palestinian Authority War

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency, a UN organization “providing humanitarian relief” in Gaza, said they found rockets hidden by PA terrorists inside a “vacant” school earlier in the week. This is the second time the UNRWA has been found to have PA’s rockets stored in UNRWA facilities.

This time the rockets were found in an “unused” UNRWA building situated

between two other UNRWA schools that are being used to host 1,500 displaced people.

Also this time, instead of returning the rockets to the PA, as the UNRWA did with that prior cache,

More Moral Equivalence Nonsense

President Obama and John Kerry have adopted this ostensibly even-handed trope [that both Israel and the Palestinian Authority must agree to a cease fire], and on Tuesday the European Union went further and deplored Israel and Hamas as if they were equal perpetrators. Hamas should stop its “criminal and unjustifiable acts,” the EU said, but it added that it was “particularly appalled” at the human cost of the Israel ground offensive.