Friday, April 30, 2010

Leftist Bad-Crazy On Arizona Immigration Law Enforcement

See: How to fight Arizona's misguided immigration law

An Arizona Legislature dominated by crazies -- they're birthers, they've allowed people to pack concealed weapons into restaurants, and axed a health insurance program for poor kids -- has just made it a crime to be an illegal immigrant in the Grand Canyon State. Law enforcement officers are now required to demand papers from anyone they suspect to be in the country illegally.

This may come as a shock to Mr. Connelly and other fringe-kook leftist like him but it is already illegal to be be an illegal immigrant in the Grand Canyon State as well as in all of the other 49 states.

This is an illustration of why the situation has gotten so out of control that states like Arizona have decided that they can no longer count on the Federal Government to be an agent of Justice and must take the matter into their own hands.

Arizona and other states that may follow in its footsteps would not have to go to the such extraordinary steps if the Federal Government was enforcing the law instead of playing politics with peoples lives.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

An Important NYT Op-Ed Explaining The Arizona Immigration Law

There will be an incredible amount of spin and outright bullshit from the Democrats and their fellow travelers on the hard left about Arizona's Immigration Law.

See: Why Arizona Drew a Line

State governments aren’t allowed to get involved in immigration, which is a federal matter. While it is true that Washington holds primary authority in immigration, the Supreme Court since 1976 has recognized that states may enact laws to discourage illegal immigration without being pre-empted by federal law. As long as Congress hasn’t expressly forbidden the state law in question, the statute doesn’t conflict with federal law and Congress has not displaced all state laws from the field, it is permitted. That’s why Arizona’s 2007 law making it illegal to knowingly employ unauthorized aliens was sustained by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

This Op-Ed is a good resource to use as this subject comes up around the water-cooler.

HT: (UFO TOFO, See #108) at Correspondence Committee

"The Single Most Critical Senate Election In The United States"

Dick Morris weighs in on the upcoming Washington State Senate Race.

See: Commentator says Washington State Senate race critical for republicans

Morris says Rossi is a potential candidate to fill one of the ten seats republicans are aiming for.

"There's no point in building a nine-story building here, because if we only gain nine seats (Vice President Joe) Biden breaks the tie for the Democrats 50-50, but if we win 10, it's 51-49 and there's nothing he can do about it."

"I think it is the single most critical senate election in the United States because I believe that we're going to win the other nine and the question is, will this be the tenth?" Morris said.
Washington is a blue state. Our politics are dominated by King County (Seattle). Patty Murray will win in King County. The key will be by how much.

East of the Cascades, Washington is red. West, it is blue. West of Seattle, it is light blue, meaning that it could be swung.

I like Rossi.

This will be a fun race.

HT: (JCM -See #100) at Correspondence Committee

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Should American Immigration Law Be Enforced?

We are being put to the test.

Should American Immigration Law be enforced? Do any of our laws mean anything beyond the capricious whims of the momentary elite?

These are the questions that Arizona has put to the nation.

The Democrat-Left would like to make it an issue of race. Will they succeed in confusing the enforcement of our immigration laws with racism?

We will see over the next several days and months if Americans will be cowed by the fear of being called racist by the welfare pimps and whores in our midst, or if the Rule of Law will be respected and upheld as a core principle that guides our nation.

If the the concept of Rule of Law is subverted by the welfare pimps and whores of the Democrat-Left, we will be left with a nation that pretends to respect the law, but in fact bends to the Rule of Men.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Democrat Patty Murray's Grim Poll Numbers Look Good For Republicans

Washington State's Senator, Patty Murray's poll numbers are looking bleak for her in the upcoming election.

See: Bad Polling News For Murray

SurveyUSA has surfaced to poll the Washington Senate race, and finds some unpleasant news for incumbent Patty Murray (4/19/10-4/22/10, 517 LV, MOE: +/- 4.4%). She fails to get above 46% against any of her opponents, and does so a polled electorate that looks an awful lot like the 2008 electorate.

Patty Murray (D) -- 42%

Dino Rossi (R) -- 52%

Patty Murray (D) -- 46%

Don Benton (R) -- 44%

Patty Murray (D) -- 46%

Clint Didier (R) -- 44%

Patty Murray (D) -- 45%

Chris Widener (R) -- 43%

Patty Murray (D) -- 45%

Paul Akers (R) -- 44%

Patty Murray (D) -- 45%

Art Coday (R) – 41%

It is still early in the game.

The MOE (Margin of Error) is an important number to look at. With this number at +/- 4.4%, only Dino Rossi has a clear lead. All of the others are too close to the MOE to be more than just hopeful.

Akers and Coday are running radio spots. If there are any TV spots out there, I have not seen them. (I don't have a TV.)

Akers' spots are pretty good. Coday's are OK.

If Rossi gets in the race, he has enough of a following to pretty much guarantee him the nomination. Rossi also looks good in front of the camera.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Chinese War Ships Play War Games Near Japan

There are many possible flash points in the world. One that does not often get much attention or taken very seriously is the friction between China and Japan.

The Chinese Navy is engaged in War Game Exercises in the waters between China and Japan.

See: China defends its drills in East China Sea

China defended on Thursday its drills in East China Sea, saying that its naval ships out in the East China Sea did not violate international laws and posed no threat to other countries.

Japanese media have alleged that two Chinese submarines and eight destroyers were spotted circling Japan's Okinotori coral reefs.

The Second Sino War still looms large on the Chinese Psyche, especially since it is often used as a propaganda tool to keep the Chinese people from looking too closely at how awful the Chinese government treats its own people.

Japan is not entirely an innocent here. Japanese denial of its role in the atrocities that its armies perpetrated in the Second Sino War have made it an easy target for the Communist Chinese Propagandist to make hay with.

The Second Sino War?

Whats that you ask?

You say you were not taught about that in your US Government School Education?

Hint: Japan bombed Pearl Harbor to keep the US from being able to interfere in the Second Sino War. They thought that we were weak enough militarily and weak enough of will that we would not have the means or the gumption to do much about it. (Projecting weakness is dangerous.)

Odds are that nothing will happen during this present confrontation. China and Japan have had these confrontations from time to time without the world blowing up. Most likely, this confrontation will conclude with little more than the usual angry diplomatic protests and press releases. But we should not pretend that if something does happen, it won't end up involving us.

(What would Obama do if China and Japan were to get into another shooting war?)

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Israel, Existential Threats And The Loss Of American Support

See: Mood Is Dark as Israel Marks 62nd Year as a Nation

“There is a confluence of two very worrying events,” said Michael Freund, a rightist columnist for The Jerusalem Post in a telephone interview. “One is the Iranian threat, an existential threat. Add to that the fact that for the first time in recent memory there is a president in the White House who is not overly sensitive to the Jewish state and its interests. You put the two together and it will affect anyone’s mood, even an optimist like me.”

Obama's and the American Left's failure to be supportive of Israel will have serious repercussions. Serious meaning war and bloodshed.

The Islamic nations that surround Israel had been largely reluctant to attack Israel because of the support that Israel received from the US. That support is now tepid at best.

Syria's recent gift of SCUD missiles to Hizb'Allah is an indicator of what the future holds in store for Israel. Hizb'Allah will have these weapons of terror at their disposal. Can the same Hizb'Allah that has already fired thousands of rockets into Israel resist the temptation to likewise launch their SCUDS into Israel? If so, for how long? Would you hazard a guess at one month or two? One year or two? Can you even imagine that Hizb'Allah will sit on their SCUDS and not fire them?

When war comes to Israel, what will Obama do? With whom will have the most sympathy? If Obama sides with Israel's enemies, what will you do?

We will have to prepare ourselves for that test.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Hizb'Allah, Syria And The Forces Of War.

This may be a hot summer in the middle east.

See: Israel warns Syria over Hezbollah attacks

Israel has delivered a secret warning to Syrian President Bashar Assad that it will respond to missile attacks from Hezbollah, the militant Lebanese-based Islamist group, by launching immediate retaliation against Syria itself.

If Syria delivered SCUD Missiles to Hizb'Allah in Lebanon as reports in the media indicate, then we may be looking at a summer war, with Israel going up against Hizb'Allah in Lebanon and the Syrian Government itself.

Peace between Israel and its neighbors now hinges on the restraint of Hizb'Allah. Can Hizb'Allah sit there with their new SCUDs and not fire them into Israel?

What will Obama do when the shooting starts? Who will he support? Who will he condemn?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Understanding Poland, Russia And The Horrors Of The Katyn Forests.

Chance and happenstance are sometimes very difficult to accept.

There will be conspiracy theories put forth to explain this terrible tragedy. It is unfortunate. It will not be helpful.

We live in an age where conspiracy theories are a dime a dozen. People seem to find comfort in the thought that bad and terrible things happen because someone or some group of people “conspired” to make them happen.

That bad and terrible things can happen for just plain inane, stupid, or silly reasons, or worse, no reason at all, means that chance and happenstance have more of a role in the currents of history than many people can stand.

For many, simple pilot error will not, can not, be enough. This is too monumental an event. It's timing and location are too significant to be just a mater of simple pilot error.

Sometimes, very bad things happen for no good reason. Sometimes, these things happen in what turn out to be the worst possible circumstance, at the worst possible place, and at the worst possible time - by no one's design. Sometimes, life is just like that. This is one such example.

Chance, Happenstance and cruel reality.

The crash that killed Polish President Lech Kaczynski and so many of Poland's top tier political leaders is a monumental catastrophe. It could not have happened on a worse patch of Russian ground.

The Katyn Forests are the site of a terrible event in Polish and Russian history. In that dark place, over a half century ago, Russia massacred about 22,000 Polish prisoners of war. The prisoners were largely Polish military officers and police officers. Among them were also many Polish political prisoners held by the Soviets. This terrible place, this horrible forest of death, this killing ground of Poland's best and brightest of the 1940's, is a sore and festering wound in the Polish psyche. It still haunts Poland's relations with modern day Russia.

To lose Poland's present day political leaders in this forest now is very terrible. It is terrible for Poland, and terrible for Russia.

Vladimir Putin is a not a nice man. Putin is trying to stay in power, trying to keep Russia from failing and trying to keep Russia relevant and important on the world stage. He is a brutal and thuggish leader of a nation in decline.

The Russian birth rate is so far below replacement rate that it's population is likely to be halved before the end of this century.

Russia is surrounded by hostile nations to the west that resent having been ill treated under the iron boot of the Soviet Empire.

To Russia's south are hostile Islamic nations, Chechnya included, that would love to feast on the rotting corpse of an enfeebled and weak Russia. They are hungry and they have growing populations. Russia will not be able to resist them much in the later part of this century. Russia simply won't have the numbers. When Russia loses the will and the means to hold off the wolves to it's south, they may be able to keep Moscow, if they are lucky. The Rest of Russia will be in dire peril.

Putin has been playing a hard game with the former east block states. He has worked very hard to weaken their resolve and to deny them the means to defend themselves against Russia. It has made relations between Russia and the former east block states unpleasant. But so long as nothing really terrible happens between Russia and the east block states, keeping them militarily weak is worth the price to the Russians of a few harsh words and the hurt feelings of the former east block states.

Then that plane crashed in the worst possible place.

Putin immediately knew that the crash was a terrible event. His quick action to declare himself the head of the investigation into the crash is his attempt to put Russia's best face forward on this disaster. He knows that it has the potential to strain already difficult relations with that former and very resentful east block state. Putin knows that the Poles have little reason to have anything but hatred and contempt for Russia. Now he has their dead President and most of Poland's leaders lying freshly dead in a new smoldering hole in the Katyn Forest.

Keeping the former east block states in check is difficult enough in normal times without having a stark and vivid reminder of how badly they have all fared at Russia's hands in the not so distant past.

I would imagine that in his memoirs, Putin will say that this was one of his worst days.

Russian Air-Crash Kills President of Poland

Many prominent Polish leaders were on the plane with him. There were no survivors.

See: Polish President Lech Kaczynski dies in plane crash

See: A nation in mourning: Poland's president and wife among at least 88 dead as their plane crashes in Russia

See: Poland in shock as president dies in air crash

Monday, April 5, 2010

Can The Federal Government Mandate That You Buy A Private Product?

Washington State's Attorney General will be making the argument that it can't. A surprisingly supportive editorial from the left of center Seattle Times editorial board explains.

See: AG Rob McKenna has a case to challenge the health-care law's individual mandate

The main challenge here is on one point — whether the federal government can require people to buy a private product: health insurance.

The argument centers on the U.S. Constitution's commerce clause, which gives Congress the power "to regulate Commerce ... among the several States ... " The lawsuit argues that requiring a citizen to buy insurance goes beyond regulating commerce. It is, says McKenna, "forcing people into the stream of commerce."

The law calls its mandate a tax. But if you comply, your money goes to the insurance company. You pay the government only if you don't comply — which means, McKenna says, "It's not a tax. It's a fine."

We think McKenna has a good case, and one the progressives who condemn him ought to appreciate. These critics are so often right about the dangers of corporate power, and particularly the rapacity of insurance companies.

Click on the link – Read the whole editorial.

I am hopeful that Rob McKenna and the other states Attorney Generals will make a good case before the Court.

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Coming Commercial Real Estate Crash

You may have noticed a lot of empty store fronts in your neighborhood strip malls. If those empty spaces give you any kind of uneasy pause or sense of concern, your instincts are sound. Something terrible is happening in the quiet corners of the nation's economy.

Commercial Real Estate is about to become big news. Very big news.

Lets look at a news article that appeared recently in the Seattle Times.

See: Columbia Center misses mortgage payment

The Columbia Center is Seattle's tallest skyscraper. It is the city's flagship office tower. A tall slender structure of black glass and steel, it rises high above all of Seattle's other offices buildings.

And nearly half of it is now available for rent.

Bottom line!: The new owners of the building are totally screwed.

When Beacon bought the Columbia Center in April 2007 it was 89 percent leased. The firm paid $621 million, according to county records, and borrowed a total of $480 million to help pay for the tower.

Its assessed value now is $380 million.

"There are many buildings in a similar position where the loan is greater than the value of the building," said Craig Kinzer of Seattle-based Kinzer Real Estate Services.

That is a world of butt-hurt.

That is also only one of many of the large office towers in this city.

The office towers are not alone in their problems. Residential rents in the Seattle area are at historic lows.

See: Renters, rejoice: Apartments are cheap and the iPod is free

After peaking in 2006 and 2007, rents in King, Snohomish and Pierce counties tanked over the course of last year by nearly 4 percent, according to Scott. He expects rents will continue to plummet this year by 5 percent, and again in 2011, but less dramatically.

In Seattle, property managers say that trend has been more pronounced, with some rents dropping as much as 15 to 20 percent last year. In general, higher-priced units have had biggest rent reductions. Bart Flora, co-owner of Cornell & Associates, which manages 6,500 properties in the city, said some, in-city, one-bedroom apartment now rent for $800 to $850, instead of roughly $1,000 two years ago.

"It's the steepest drop I've ever encountered in 25 years, certainly in my career," said Flora. He added that he believed the market - at least in Seattle - appears to have hit bottom and is stabilizing.

(Stablizing? Not even close buddy. There is a whole lot more bottom to hit.)

Now think about what all of that means, not only to the landlords of both the office towers and the apartment buildings, but also about what it means to the municipal coffers. When there is no money to tax . . .

Seattle is screwed.

And its not alone.

Look around.

What do you see happening in your city?

See: Half of Commercial Mortgages to Be Underwater: Warren

By the end of 2010, about half of all commercial real estate mortgages will be underwater, said Elizabeth Warren, chairperson of the TARP Congressional Oversight Panel, in a wide-ranging interview on Monday.

“They are [mostly] concentrated in the mid-sized banks,” Warren told CNBC. “We now have 2,988 banks—mostly midsized, that have these dangerous concentrations in commercial real estate lending."

As a result, the economy will face another “very serious problem” that will have to be resolved over the next three years, she said, adding that things are unlikely to return to normalcy in 2010.

Soon, the quiet corners of our economy are going to come screaming down around all of our ears.

HT: 3Wood at CC