Friday, November 28, 2014

Media Bias: An Analogy

Bias in political opinion is the philosophical equivalent of the concept of relative velocity in physics. When one is moving with the same velocity as another object then one does not notice the motion of that object. By the same token if one’s opinions are in agreement with an article or media report we tend not to sense the bias as that would call into question our personal asymmetries (and it is of course human nature to see ourselves as intrinsically fair). Hence Liberals don’t see the obvious bias in the MSM as it gels with their worldview. Conservatives, as well as those of the far left, are removed from this frame of reference and can clearly see the bias. The far left will argue that the MSM is right wing (which in their reference frame it is) and conservatives will claim that it is either liberal or leftist depending on the individual stance of the conservative making the call. The problem with the liberal mindset is that its synchronous walk with the MSM autopilot allows it to shelter in default position that can foster ‘lazy thinking’ and a blinkered vision of the world. A specific case in point is the inability to see that the rhetoric offered by networks such as MSNBC and CBS is just as slanted in its degree of bias as those of Fox.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Good bye Chucky

Chuck Hagel, the anti-Israel Secretary of Defense appointed by Obama in 2013, has resigned. I wonder if he will complain like his predecssors Robert Gates and Leon Panetta about the administration's micro-management focus and lack of consistent strategy in the Middle East. I never liked Hagel so I can't say that I am loathe to see him leave but considering the POTUS's poor record in cabinet apointee's (John Kerry ranking amongst the worst) it won't surprise me if Hagel's successor drags the bar even lower.

Thoughts on what is greater

I am not an orthodox jew but I do believe in a transcendent entity that for convenience I call G-d. Essentially I am a rationalist theist. There have been times that I have gravitated toward both atheism and deism. I rejected the former as it fails to adequately explain the reality of why there is something as opposed to nothing. The latter while addressing the origin question leaves us with the harshness of a world without intrinsic purpose. Yet I struggle with some big qu...estions that were further highlighted by last week's brutal synagogue attacks. How could G-d let this happen in a house of worship geared to him? If he is indifferent then surely he is not worthy of our worship. If he lacks the power to stop it then he is clearly not the Almighty. These are questions that have been asked over and over again yet with each horror they naturally re-surface. The best that we can posit as theists is that we don't have a complete understanding of the bigger picture. There are greater forces at play but we a humans, being limited by our rational and sensory constraints, can only comprehend a sliver of the vast mosaic. This is not entirely satisfying explanation but to abandon it would leave me floating in the existential abyss of the relativism of the mind. I cannot stomach that. A world where a position of evil is only in 'opinion' worse than that of good is a world of nothing that passes into the night with no worth. For me that would be hell. So I continue to believe. My faith is shaken at times, but the alternative is much more frightening.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Yet another outpouring of evil

Tuesday 18th of November marks yet another tragic event in the tortured history of our people. Five Jews were killed and eight others wounded in an act of hatred and evil that furthers reveals the malignancy that resides in the Palestinian mindset. It is a depravity born from a self-destructive yearning that values death over life, ridicules rationalism and wraps itself in the barbarism of cult-like fanatical behaviour. In practicality it finds sustenance in a media machine that dehumanizes the... Jew and teaches from a young age an anti-semitic bile that constantly invites such atrocities. The killings have happened before and they will unfortunately occur once again. While Palestinian leaders may decry such evil, with an insincerity that only a fool could believe, their hands drip with the same blood that grace the hands of the terrorists. In their rhetoric and support for a corrosive education and values system these leaders have nurtured demented and extremely hateful thinking. This is the tragedy that they have catalyzed. However Israel will survive and it will grow stronger. The Jewish people have a history of outliving our tormentors and we will defeat this scourge as well. At times we are isolated and it feels like that again. However our strength is in our solidarity, not just with ourselves but with those like-minded voices, who value the human spirit, the sanctity of our shared civilization and the need to be vigilant and not tire in the defence of the great values that separate us from those that seek to reduce our species to the lowest possible moral depth. Am Israel Chai.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Thoughts on the Terrorist Acts in Canada this week

Well it had to come. The Islamists are hitting targets on Canadian soil and will continue to do so. First there was Monday’s hit-and-run attack now Wednesday’s shootings at the War Memorial and Parliament Hill. The role of ISIS in catalyzing these events is still unclear but the Jihadist link is very strong. The usual terror spin doctors in the media will of course urge us to show restraint while arguing with no particular evidence that the perpetrators are not real Muslims ...and that their actions are inconsistent with the Koran. While a part of me wishes that this were true my personal investigation into the dogma that drives these fanatics reveals a conclusion at odds with this obvious simplification. Besides the nauseating restraint request (something we in the West have followed through to a fault…often with our own safety at risk) there will be those, such as certain columnists in the Toronto Star, who will no doubt find a way of blaming these attacks on neo-conservatives, George Bush, Harper’s support for Israel, Lepanto, cartoons, Charles Martel, low budget You Tube movies and the Crusades. Anything except the real cause…The Armed Jihadist impulse in the Islamic World…A well established phenomenon with origins in the days of the prophet himself. Now I am heartened to see that some Liberals are waking up to this threat. Richard Dawkins and Bill Maher come to mind but there are still many who continue to sprout the ‘hear no evil, see no evil lines’ best exemplified by Ben Affleck in his insinuation that criticism of Islam by its very nature must be tainted by racism and that overused meaningless newspeak term Islamophobia. While a Grade eight student with a smidgeon of critical thinking could of course debunk the Affleck assertion, opponents of the Counter-Jihad continue to use his faulty line of reasoning to ever play the faithful water carrier role and give those who would like to relegate western civilization to history’s trash heap their best possible kick at the can. Good people who know that our liberties are well earned and worth fighting for should not cave into the bullying of this totalitarian ideology, nor the whining of their dhimmi apologists. We stared down National Socialism and Marxist-Leninism and we will defeat Islamism as well.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Marie Antoinette

A lot of the bad publicity surrounding Marie Antoinette emanates from the smear campaigns directed against her by the Jacobins, although incidences such as the Diamond Necklace Affair and the Madame Deficit labelling clearly pre-date the Jacobin attacks. I don’t believe that she was bad person however she does appear to be both frivolous, naive and if I have to say so not particularly bright. Her love for her husband and children is admirable and she did seem to support Jacques Necker in his bid to bring the nation’s finances under control. Historians have debated for some time as to the degree of influence that she had on her husband but I do believe that she had a significant role in encouraging Louis XVI to make his ill-fated ‘Flight to Varennes’, a turning point in the fate of the monarchy as an institution. Her connection to the arch-enemy, Austria, was no doubt a legitimate concern for the revolutionary government, and did materialize into a real threat to France with the War of the First Coalition. I think that is reasonable to compare Marie Antoinette to Catherine the Great at least with respect to their origins in the political scene. Both were foreigners (Antoinette from Austria, Catherine from the Germanic States), both were married to weak kings (Peter III for Catherine, Louis XVI for Marie Antoinette), both arrived in countries with large populations, that had strong nobilities and a gigantic poorly treated peasant/serf /third estate class. Each nation was a key centre for a brand of rigid Christianity (Eastern Orthodoxy for Russia, Catholicism for France). Both countries had a very strong war driven monarch who in the not too distant past had resurrected their countries fortunes from the doldrums (Peter the Great for Russia, Louis XIV for France). Yet one of these women went on to greatness, Catherine, while the other, Antoinette, is associated with failure. It is tempting to blame this on spending but Catherine the Great was no fiscal conservative either. What I do believe was the big difference (other than their intellect) is that Catherine successfully ‘Russified’ herself from day one. She changed her name and dropped all connection to her German background. Antoinette did none of this and was always seen as a foreigner. So that when the revolution came it was natural that she should be vilified as an enemy of the state. If Marie Antoinette had stepped down from her pedestal on day one, it is possible that she may have become the People’s Queen, like Catherine and saved the nation from some of the bloodbath which was slated to occur

Friday, October 10, 2014

Justin Trudeau...Infant politician

It's official Justin Trudeau is an idiot...I can't believe that the Liberal leader would make such a stupid remark about the bombing of ISIS...He really is a child trying to play with adults...what an embarrassment...the Grits should have gone with Marc Garneau when they had the chance..

Et Tu Brutus

It seems as though some key Democrats are now dissing Obama...Leon Panetta...the former Secretary of Defense has recently blasted Barry O for his poor handling of the ISIS rise to power...He may be running interference for Hillary though as he is a one time Clinton loyalist....On another note David Axelrod just threw Obama under the bus with respect to the economy...the vultures are circling...

Lets not delight in Turkey

When push comes to shove the only real and dependable ally that the US has in the Middle East is Israel. Even the White House is sensing that Turkey, Qatar and the UAE talk out of both sides of their mouths. Joe Biden openly said what what has been obvious to those in the know that that this group of three cannot be trusted. The Turks are now one of the biggest impediments to international efforts for stability in the region. While they once strode a brave road toward secularism in the 1990s, their presence in NATO carries with it a malignancy that is lethal. Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a shrewd Islamist who plays a cat-and-mouse game to further an expanionist agenda. Future events will demonstrate this clearly.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Benghazi Remembered

The US Senate, which is still under Democrat control for now, looks to strengthen ties with Israel, reversing some of the damage done (at least on paper) by Obama/Kerry and co....the initiative appears to be bipartisan..Meanwhile on another front Hillary continues to take heat at the Benghazi hearings...There are so many unanswered questions that have been swept under the rug and point directly at the incompetence of this administration...The Clintons are notorious for dodgin...g scandals that would sink any other politician...a US ambassador's persistent warnings were ignored...drone reports were swept under the rug ...the ambassador was eventually brutally killed as were two Navy Seals and the Obama administration had the audacity to blame the attack on an anti-Islamic film that surfaced a month or so earlier (an excuse that has been discredited)...Obama/Hillary/Panetta/Carney blatantly lied to the American public in order to avoid taking extra heat during the Election fight against Romney in 2012....Americans of all political stripes should be ashamed of the action of this administration...which sacrificed a moral stance for political expediency...a real dark day in the history of the POTUS. Remember the time when American presidents actually stood up to the Libyans?

Eric Holder...Cheers and don't let the door hit you on the way out...

After much self-flagellation Obama has decided to act against the evil that is ISIS. Time will tell whether his actions will have the desired effect but he deserves the benefit of the doubt for now with respect to this particular action. Meanwhile politics in the great nation improved considerably with the resignation of Eric Holder from the post of Attorney General. Holder was a charlatan who side stepped investigations regarding obvious election fraud, used his office to promote a racially motivated agenda and too often took a soft stance against Islamist terror. His policies were consistent with an administration that limps from crisis to crisis and the US will be better served by his absence.

Jewish Voice for Peace...Barely Jewish not peaceful...

I have noticed several New Year posts from the inappropriately named Jewish Voice for Peace, making their way into my Facebook feed. Please note that this group is not a pro-peace initiative but an anti-Israel front group that gives the 'kosher' seal of approval to the ongoing campaign against the Jewish state. It puts a soft spin on the terror used by Hamas, Fatah, Islamic Jihad and others against Israel and decries Israel's attempts to defend itself. The mere fact that it prominent BDS supporters such as Desmond Tutu and Naomi Klein on its front page explains a lot. JVP resides politically to the far left of Peace Now, New Israel Fund and J Street and it is clear that many of its members don't even believe that Israel has the right to exist in the first place preferring the two state solution as a stepping stone to a one state option that would see Israel disappear off the world map altogether. Israel and the Jewish people have legitimate peace groups on both sides of the political divide that have its best interests at heart.....JVP is not one of them