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For the last two weeks the weather in Pittsburgh has been typical for January -- it's snowed almost every day.  And for the first time this winter I've heard complaints about the weather at work.  I heard none during our unseasonably warm December. I note this to put in perspective the latest scare report on global warming from the United Nations:  Hypothetical piled upon hypothetical,  based on computer models which cannot duplicate the actual climate of the present or the recent past. Alarmists attribute warming to rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.  But CO2 accounts for only about 0.03 percent of the earth's atmosphere, and less than 10 percent of the greenhouse effect.  Only about 14 percent of the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere comes from burning fossil fuels. That means all of Algore's hysteria, all the economy-destroying restrictions of the Kyoto Treaty, are about stopping carbon emissions responsible for 1.4% of the greenhouse effect.



Reading Ann Coulter’s new book, Treason is a lot of fun. She has to be the ballsiest chick in America. Part of what makes her so cool is that you know she would love that description of her.

Aside from the sheer enjoyment of watching her rhetorically eviscerate liberals, she performs a great public service in rehabilitating Joe McCarthy and exposing the Myth of McCarthyism. “McCarthyism is one of the markers on the left’s Via Dolorossa,” she observes. “It is their slavery, their gulag, their potato famine. Otherwise liberals would just be geeks from Manhattan and Hollywood.”

So let’s go



Three interesting things have happened since President Bush announced plans to "surge" U.S. troops. First, al Qaeda appears to be retreating from Baghdad.  Second, the radical cleric Moqtada al Sadr is retreating.  Third, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki is retreating from his support of al Sadr. And the surge has barely begun.  Yet the Democrats say it has to fail.



The Jewish Talmud makes the following observation:

There is no beauty like Jerusalem, no wealth like Rome, no depravity like Arabia.
This was written in the 3rd Century AD - three hundred years before the Arabs embraced Mohammed’s Islam. But neither the adoption of Islam nor all the intervening centuries since has decreased the addiction Arab men have to pederasty. Arab pederasty was personified in Yasser Arafat, one of the vilest human beings to ever infest the earth. Far worse than his pedophilic predilections, however, was Arafat’s Arab Naziism. Yasser Arafat was the Hitler of Palestinian Arabs. Just as Hitler led the German people in a euphoric frenzy to their doom, so Arafat has done the same to his people. On his deathbed next to him lies the Myth of Palestinianism.



The FBI's bumbling in the war on terror, and the tendency of the FBI to promote the bumblers, has made it one of our weakest links in the chain of agencies tasked with protecting America's security. Foreign spies have been eating the FBI's lunch for years.  Katrina Leung, for example, was permitted to pass along critical national secrets for years after she'd confessed to being a spy for Red China because the two FBI agents who were supposed to be monitoring her were sleeping with her.  Neither of those agents was punished. The ghastly reality is that, for many senior people in the FBI, their careers come first, the reputation of the FBI second.  The security of the United States is a distant third.



[One of the most infuriating aspects to the Duke Rape Case is the media's refusal to disclose the name of the woman involved.  She is only identified as "the accuser," while the real victims in the case, the Duke lacrosse players, have had their names and pictures broadcast to every inhabitant of the planet. Not in this article.  The woman's name is Crystal Gail Mangum.  Google her name and you will get 16,000 hits.  There is even a Wikipedia entry on her.  So we are hereby happy to end the journalistic conspiracy and insert her name along with "accuser." ---JW] CBS's "Sixty Minutes" broadcast Sunday (1/14) showed many people the gross abuse of prosecutorial power in the Duke rape case. Durham district attorney Michael Nifong indicted three Duke University lacrosse players last April after a stripper who performed at a team party claimed she had been raped. The accuser, Crystal Gail Mangum, picked the three defendants from a photo lineup consisting only of lacrosse players, a violation of police procedures.  (Clearly innocent people are supposed to be mixed in with suspects.) Liberals rushed to condemn the Duke lacrosse players because they loved the narrative: rich white guys abuse poor black woman.  Some furious backtracking is taking place as evidence of their innocence mounts.  A new verb, to "nifong," has been coined.  It's a synonym for "to frame."



Debate over the new strategy for Iraq mostly has been between those who regard it as a "last chance" for victory, and those who think the war already is irretrievably lost.  About this, two observations: The first is that we have a much lower threshold for what constitutes defeat than our grandparents did.  In the summer of 1942, the Japanese were planning to invade Australia, and German tanks were parked at the Eiffel Tower.  But few then said we should throw in the towel. Our parents and grandparents realized the fascists we were fighting then were really nasty guys; that living in a world in which they were dominant would be intolerable.  They realized our country had great strengths, and our enemies had weaknesses.  If our strengths could be mobilized, and their weaknesses exploited, victory would be ours. We did mobilize our strengths.  Half our gross domestic product was devoted to the war effort. Things sure are different now.



On Christmas day this week, the National Academy of Sciences issued a report which indicates Iranian oil production is about to plunge. Iran currently earns about $50 billion a year in oil exports.  Oil profits account for about 65 percent of Iranian government revenues.  But Iranian oil exports could decline by half within five years, and virtually disappear within ten, said the report's author Roger Stern, an economic geographer at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. The effect on Iran would be catastrophic. Thanks to mismanagement by the mullahs, and corruption on a scale so vast as to make even an Iraqi blush, Iran's economy is already a basket case.  Here's an example:  Iran, one of the world's largest oil producers, has to import 35% of its gasoline.  The fools haven't built new refineries and can't operate efficiently the ones they have.  So they have to import refined gasoline for their cars. Get ready for the next War For Oil in the Middle East.



Sir Thomas Gresham noted that: "bad money drives out good." A kind of Gresham's Law applies in politics and journalism. Bad advice drives out good.  The recommendations of the Iraq Study Group (composed of 10 famous people who know next to nothing about either the military or the Middle East) received enormous attention from the news media.  But the report last week from people who actually know what they're talking about received little. Aside from the surreal recommendation that we ask our enemies, Iran and Syria, for help in quelling the violence they are largely responsible for fomenting, the ISG recommended, essentially, that we do more of what hasn't worked very well.  President Bush has been asking a lot of people what he should do next in Iraq.  But he should have consulted with Travis Patriquin.