“Moral Idiots” from Code Pink Disrupt Israeli Ambassador’s Speech at CUFI Gala

Last night, Christians United for Israel (CUFI) held their ninth annual Night to Honor Israel gala. This was  the kickoff event for the Christian Zionist group’s Washington Summit held at the DC convention Center.  More than 5,000 were in the audience, composed of CUFI delegates, honored speakers and guests. Having attended andwritten about the first CUFI Washington Summit, held in the midst of the Second Lebanon War in 2006, interspersed with Israeli music, dancing in the aisles and waving of American and Israel flags. That inaugural CUFI event was held at the convention center of  the Washington Hilton.

This year I watched it on-line at GETV reminiscing mentally about the inaugural event I attended. The remarks conveyed by speakers at the CUFI gala were punctuated by references to the war raging in Gaza. A war with IDF ground forces pitted against the fortified terrorist army of Hamas supported by Turkey and Qatar with rockets and engineering experts provided by Iran’s Quds Force and proxy Hezbollah.

Watch this YouTube video of Ambassador Dermer’s speech at last night’s CUFI Night to Honor Israel:

Last night, hecklers from Code Pink somehow entered the Convention Center heckling Israeli Ambassador to the US Ron Dermer’s stem winding speech near the close of the two hour event. They shouted  “war Criminal!” Dermer, not missing a beat, referred to the hecklers as “moral Idiots.” That led to loud cheers of “Israel, Israel” by the CUFI audience.

Code Pink has perennially protested both AIPAC Washington Policy Conferences and CUFI Summit events. Code Pink representatives were involved with the aborted Free Gaza flotillas. Most notorious of which occurred in 2010 involving the Israeli navy commando raid on the Turkish ferry, the Mavi Marmara owned by Turkish Islamist charity and Hamas backer, IHH.

The CUFI Night to honor Israel last was an emotional gathering keyed to uplifting spirits and girding for battle citizens lobbying on Capitol Hill the following day. The CUFI delegate audience at the DC Convention Center traveled from across the US to hear rousing speakers led off by Pastor Hagee. The speeches were directed at energizing the delegates to charge up Capitol Hill the next day buttonholing Congressional Representatives and Senators endeavoring to stop funding of the Palestinian Authority and support funds for Israel’s Iron Dome system that has spared mass casualties in Israeli population centers. When cameras panned the audience I noticed Erick Stakelbeck, CBN’s noted terrorism commentator. Rabbi Jonathan Hausman was also in the audience.

The CUFI Night to Honor Israel began with an invocation by Rabbi Aryeh Scheinberg of orthodox Rodei Sholom Synagogue of San Antonio, Texas. That was followed by an introductory speech by his friend Pastor Hagee supportive of Israel’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza. An Operation necessitated by Hamas’ rocket war covering 80 percent of Israel  and sending its citizens scrambling for shelter triggered by wailing red alert sirens or pings on their cell phones from a downloaded app. His message conveyed the hope that Israel’s ground incursion into Gaza world crush Hamas. Five days into ground operations, the IDF is faced with a daunting, tough slog with significant casualties deployed to destroy a network of tunnels crossing the frontier threatening Israeli Kibbutzim and towns in the western Negev. The creation of those expertly built tunnels with tons of concrete and steel appear to be taken from the playbook of Hezbollah, Iran’s proxy, who fortified Southern Lebanon after Israel left in 2000.

Sheldon Adelson and his wife Miriam were honored at last night’s CUFI event. They spoke of their appreciation for this flagship Christian Zionist organization founded by Pastor John Hagee of the Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas. US Sen. Lindsey Graham spoke about his first trip to Israel in 1996 with the Adelsons. He  drew attention to the threat of Iran’s nuclear weapons project and the necessity of picking up the cudgel of tougher sanctions given the extension this past weekend of P5+1 talks with Iran. CUFI’s Executive Director David Brog spoke of the rise of CUFI student chapters combating campus Israeli Apartheid Awareness Weeks and  BDS campaigns. He noted the disruption of former Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren’s speech in February 2010 at UCIrvine. Brog was followed by a speech by one of the 1,000 CUFI college chapter delegates from Mississippi   chronicling his path towards his campus leadership advocating  support Israel and Jews.

Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer at July 2014 CUFI Washington Summit.

Near the close of the two hour CUFI gala came Amb. Dermer’s speech. He drew attention to the sobering loss of more than 27 fallen IDF soldiers in the ground incursion, among them two Americans, Max Steinberg of Woodland Hills, California, and Sean Carmeli from South Padre Island, Texas. 20,000 attended Carmeli’s funeral in Israel signifying solidarity and recognition of his commitment and those of his Golani Brigade mates to defeat Hamas. Dermer drew attention to Hamas’ strategy of purposefully placing human shields in front of launching sites and the extensive network of tunnels in Gaza, many with entrances in homes and apartment complexes. Tunnels designed to infiltrate suicide commandos inflicting casualties on IDF troops across the frontier and seeking to kill and kidnap Israel service personnel and civilians.

In response to hecklers from pro-Palestinian Jewish Voice for Peace and Code Pink, Amb. Dermer drew a comparison to the London blitz of WWII and the Nazi  V -1 and 2 flying bombs and rockets that took the lives of tens of thousands of brave British civilians. Jacob Kornbluh in his JP- Jewish Politics News and Updates report captured Dermer’s remarks:

During his speech, which was interrupted several times by code pink hecklers, Ambassador Dermer emphasized that no military in history has taken greater care than the IDF to protect the innocents of the other side.

“Does anyone believe that America would use less force? Does anyone believe that Britain would use less force?” he asked.

Dermer drew a distinction between the responses Israel has shown for rockets being fired at its cities to Churchill’s response when bombarded by missiles fired by the Nazis on Britain during WWII. “I won’t accept criticism of Israel for not exercising restraint that would not be shown by any nation on earth.” “Israeli Defense Forces should be given a Nobel Peace prize for fighting with unimaginable restraint,” Dermer proclaimed.

Dermer referenced the “evil” of Hamas placing Palestinian civilians as human shields. He said it was part of a deliberate strategy directed at cultivating leftist groups of Jewish fellow travelers like the hecklers of his speech and the media with graphic pictures of injured or dead children and women aimed squarely at placing the blame on Israel. He said “it is time for the UN and the world to find a moral compass and backbone.” He drew attention to the rise of radical Islam, whether Shia Iran and proxy Hezbollah, Sunni ISIS and Hamas denying rights for women and  no tolerance for Jews and Christian. He noted the 35,000 Assyrian Chaldean Christians who fled Mosul conquered by the Islamic State for the security of Kurdistan in Iraq.

What occurred at CUFI’s Washington Gala was “a night to remember.” A night that honored Israel.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on the New English Review.

Is Charlie Crist buying the Democrat Party of Florida?

The August 26th primary nears to pick the Florida Democrat gubernatorial nominee. The race is heating up between Democrats Nan Rich and Charlie Crist.  The question for Democrat primary voters: Who are you going to trust – Nan or Charlie? Perhaps some background and new information will help Democrat primary voters make a decision.

Nan Rich is a life long Democrat. Charlie Crist is not. So how does Charlie become the Democrat favorite? Can you say money? Charlie Crist is inextricably tied to big money. His relationship with the law firm of Morgan & Morgan gave him access to those with deep pockets when he was a Republican and this close relationship continues now that he is a Democrat gubernatorial primary candidate.

According to News Service of Florida:

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist and closely aligned political committee raised about $98,000 from July 5 to July 11, while continuing to funnel large amounts of money to the Florida Democratic Party, according to newly filed campaign finance reports.

The committee, known as “Charlie Crist for Florida,” sent $400,000 to the state party on July 8. That came after similar moves in past months, including $400,000 sent to the party in June. Crist’s campaign raised $61,059 from July 5 to July 11, bringing its overall total to nearly $4.2 million.

The committee raised $37,000 during the seven-day period, bringing its total to $10.16 million. Former state Senate Minority Leader Nan Rich, Crist’s opponent in the Aug. 26 Democratic primary, collected $5,175 for her campaign account from July 5 to July 11, giving her a total of $408,704. A committee backing Rich, known as “Citizens for a Progressive Florida,” collected $25,000 during the seven-day period, bringing its total to $140,315.

[Emphasis mine]

So is Crist buying the Democrat Party of Florida? It appears so given the largess of the Crist for Florida campaign to the FL party in excess of $.8 million.

Crist is known to use money to make his way to the top. While the leader of the Republican Party of Florida he used and misused donations. In 2010 the Orlando Sentinel reported, “State Republicans moved the three-way U.S. Senate race to a new level Saturday, with party leaders pointing to an audit of their books they say implies Gov. Charlie Crist — now an independent candidate for U.S. Senate — ran up potentially ‘hundreds of thousands’ of dollars in inappropriate charges. Party Chairman and state Sen. John Thrasher said the expenses came to light during the just-completed forensic audit by Alston & Bird LLP — which was the examiner in energy giant Enron’s 2002 bankruptcy. He said the party may sue their former standard bearer to get the money back.”

As George Santayana wrote, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

Crist uses money to get what he wants. At some point, history tells us, Crist will begin withdrawing his investments in the FL Democrat party. Is that what Florida Democrats want in their nominee? We shall see on August 26th.

UPDATE: CRIST COMMITTEE SHIPS ANOTHER $600K TO PARTY

July 25, 2014

A committee closely tied to Democrat Charlie Crist’s gubernatorial campaign raised $221,600 from July 12 to July 18 and funneled $600,000 to the Florida Democratic Party, according to newly filed finance reports. The committee, known as “Charlie Crist for Florida,” has sent a series of large checks to the party recently. Along with the $600,000 payment July 18, for example, the committee reported sending $400,000 to the party on July 8. Overall, the committee had raised a total of nearly $10.4 million as of July 18 and had spent $2.2 million. Updated totals for Crist’s campaign account had not been posted on the state Division of Elections website Friday morning.

Meanwhile, Gov. Rick Scott’s campaign and the closely aligned “Let’s Get to Work” committee raised $221,695 from July 12 to July 18, according to the reports. And while the committee did not report spending money on TV ads during the week, it shelled out $213,752 to a Ponte Vedra Beach firm for yard signs. Scott’s campaign raised $200,695 during the period, bringing its overall total to $5,840,775. It also had spent a total of $1,051,206. The committee, meanwhile, raised $21,000 during the week, bringing its overall total to $32,980,927. Let’s Get to Work had spent a total of $19,080,722.

Florida Appeals Court says “NO” to homosexual “marriage” licenses in the state.

The Christian Family Coalition (CFC) Florida reports that the Florida Democratic League (FDL), and People United to Lead the Struggle for Equality (PULSE), two parties in the homosexual so-called “marriage” lawsuit,  filed more than 6,000 signatures with Miami-Dade County Clerk Harvey Ruvin calling on Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Sarah Zabel to dismiss the pending discriminatory lawsuit.

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“In a nation of laws, no one can be above the law. What law gives Plaintiffs the right to arbitrarily,  declare a personal behavioral choice, be it sexual or otherwise, a constitutional “right,” and then file a sham lawsuit to force the rest of society to accept it as such?, said Florida Democratic League Chairman Dr. Eladio Jose Armesto.

“Six days ago, Monroe Circuit Judge Luis Garcia shocked voters when he arrogantly trashed the votes of nearly 8 million Floridians. The backlash to that corrupt decision was so great that over the last six days more than 6,000 Miami-Dade residents  signed a letter to Judge Zabel calling on her to dismiss this discriminatory lawsuit”, stated People United to Lead the Struggle for Equality (PULSE) Executive Director Nathaniel Wilcox.

“Undoubtedly, there is a growing backlash to the homosexual so-called ‘marriage’ lawsuit in Miami-Dade when 6,000 of those who elected Judge Zabel signed a letter in just days asking for the sham lawsuit’s dismissal. This is evidence of the growing anti-corruption backlash taking place”, concludes Anthony Verdugo, Founder and Executive Director, Christian Family Coalition (CFC) Florida.

Planned Parenthood’s War on Women: Counselor Tells Teen to Let Her Boyfriend Beat Her

LifeNews.com reports:

Abortion activists claim pro-lifers are engaging in a “war on women:” by passing legislation to protect women and unborn children from abortion. But a new expose’ video catches a Planned Parenthood staffer engaging in her own war on women.

The pro-life group Live Action released the third installment today in its “SexEd” investigative series, showing a Planned Parenthood staffer in Portland, Oregon offering disturbing sex counseling to someone she thinks is a fifteen-year-old girl. The video clearly shows the counselor encouraging the young girl to allow herself to be victimized in violent sexual encounters with her partner.

The staffer tells the investigator that “it’s very common to experiment with different things,” including “being tied up” and “whipped” and “the baby thing, where they will put on diapers[.]”

Some girls like being “spanked,” “hit,” or “whipped,” said the counselor.

Watch the video interview with a Planned Parenthood counselor (WARING: This material is not suitable for children. Viewer discretion is advised):

Read more.

The Portland video is the third in a series. Previous SexEd installments showed Planned Parenthood locations in Indianapolis and Denver offering similarly disturbing advice to investigators posing as minor girls. Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, under whose jurisdiction the Denver facilities lie, is now being sued for sending a 13-year-old abuse victim back to her abuser after aborting her baby.

The “B” in Obama stands for “Boycott” Israel

In a July 23rd, 2014 press release Senator Ted Cruz of Texas stated:

Aiding Hamas while simultaneously isolating Israel does two things.  One, it helps our enemy. Two, it hurts our ally.

The facts suggest that President Obama has just used a federal regulatory agency to launch an economic boycott on Israel, in order to try to force our ally to comply with his foreign-policy demands. [Emphasis mine]

Sen. Cruz is asking the Obama Administration to answer five specific questions regarding the FAA’s decision to suspend flights to Israel:

  1. Was this decision a political decision driven by the White House?
  2. If the FAA’s decision was based on airline safety, why was Israel singled out, when flights are still permitted into Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen?
  3. What was the FAA’s ‘safety’ analysis that led to prohibiting flights to Israel, while still permitting flights to Ukraine—where a commercial airline flight was just shot down with a BUK missile?
  4. What specific communications occurred between the FAA and the White House? And the State Department? Why were any such communications necessary, if this was purely about airline safety?
  5. Was this a safety issue, or was it using a federal regulatory agency to punish Israel to try to force them to comply with Secretary Kerry’s demand that Israel stop their military effort to take out Hamas’s rocket capacity?

Full remarks of Senator Ted Cruz on the ban on flights by U.S. carriers to Israel:

“Today, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that it was extending its ban on flights by U.S. carriers into Israel. The rationale was that because one Hamas-launch rocket had landed in a field one mile from Ben Gurion International Airport, the ‘potentially hazardous security situation created by the armed conflict between Israel and Gaza’ necessitated this extreme action that has so far cancelled some 160 flights and left tens of thousands stranded.

“Obviously, no one wants to place civilian travelers in harm’s way, and the recent downing of Malaysian Airways flight 17 by pro-Russian militants in Ukraine is a stark reminder of the dangers posed by regional unrest. But security concerns in Israel are hardly breaking news, and given the exceptional challenge Israel faces, Ben Gurion has rightly earned the reputation as one of the safest airports in the world due to the aggressive security measures implemented by the Israeli government.

“Given that some 2,000 rockets have been fired into Israel over the last six weeks, many of them at Tel Aviv, it seems curious to choose yesterday at noon to announce a flight ban, especially as the Obama Administration had to be aware of the punitive nature of this action.

“Tourism is an $11 billion industry for Israel, which is in the middle of a summer high season already seriously diminished by the conflict initiated by Hamas. Group tours have been cancelling at a 30% rate. This FAA flight ban may well represent a crippling blow to a key economic sector through both security concerns and worries that additional bans will down more flights and strand more passengers. It hardly matters if or when the ban is lifted. At this point, the damage may already be done.

“Even given the remarkable resilience and prosperity of its economy, Israel has always been vulnerable to economic blackmail. In the 1970s, we saw the Arab League boycott, which tried to punish any financial institution that did business with Israel.

“Today we have similar noxious efforts by the Boycott, Divest, Sanction or ‘BDS’ movement, which seeks to punish Israel for the fact that the militant terrorist elements embraced by the Palestinian Authority make any peace deal an intolerable security risk to Israel at this time. But the Obama Administration has refused to robustly denounce this effort to undermine our ally.

“Instead, Secretary of State John Kerry issued a veiled threat last February when he encouraged boycotts of Israel and said that absent serious Israeli concessions at the negotiating table, Israel’s economic prosperity was ‘not sustainable’ and ‘illusory.’ Secretary Kerry unfortunately reprised this theme just this April, when he threatened that Israel risked becoming an ‘apartheid state’ if Israel did not submit to his chosen solution to the Israel-Palestinian crisis.

“Taken in the context of Secretary Kerry’s comments, yesterday’s action by the FAA raises some serious questions:

  1. Was this decision a political decision driven by the White House?
  2. If the FAA’s decision was based on airline safety, why was Israel singled out, when flights are still permitted into Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen?
  3. What was the FAA’s ‘safety’ analysis that led to prohibiting flights to Israel, while still permitting flights to Ukraine—where a commercial airline flight was just shot down with a BUK missile?
  4. What specific communications occurred between the FAA and the White House? And the State Department? Why were any such communications necessary, if this was purely about airline safety?
  5. Was this a safety issue, or was it using a federal regulatory agency to punish Israel to try to force them to comply with Secretary Kerry’s demand that Israel stop their military effort to take out Hamas’s rocket capacity?

“When Secretary Kerry arrived in Cairo this week his first act was to announce $47 million in additional aid to Gaza, which is in effect $47 million for Hamas. In short order, this travel ban was announced by the FAA. Aiding Hamas while simultaneously isolating Israel does two things. One, it helps our enemy. Two, it hurts our ally.

“Until these serious questions are answered, the facts suggest that President Obama has just used a federal regulatory agency to launch an economic boycott on Israel, in order to try to force our ally to comply with his foreign-policy demands.

“If so, Congress should demand answers.”

RELATED ARTICLE: Obama’s Economic Isolation Of Israel

Saint Thomas Aquinas on Immigration: Man’s relations with foreigners are twofold, peaceful and hostile

Saint Thomas Aquinas was a Roman Catholic priest who authored the Summa Theologica and Summa Contra Gentiles, which shaped the Catholic Church and its philosophies for centuries. His teachings are still influential. But is the Catholic Church following his teachings on the issue of immigration.

What would Saint Thomas Aquinas say to Pope Francis and the U.S. Council of Catholic Bishops about immigration?

summa Theological book coverIn the column “What Does Saint Thomas Say About Immigration?” John Horvat II asks the same question and provides an answer by quoting Saint Thomas Aquinas. Horvat notes, “Immigration is a modern problem and so some might think that the medieval Saint Thomas would have no opinion about the problem. And yet, he does. One has only to look in his masterpiece, the Summa Theologica, in the second part of the first part, question 105, article 3 (I-II, Q. 105, Art. 3). There one finds his analysis based on biblical insights that can add to the national debate. They are entirely applicable to the present.”

Saint Thomas: “Man’s relations with foreigners are twofold: peaceful, and hostile: and in directing both kinds of relation the Law contained suitable precepts.”

Commentary: In making this affirmation, Saint Thomas affirms that not all immigrants are equal. Every nation has the right to decide which immigrants are beneficial, that is, “peaceful,” to the common good. As a matter of self-defense, the State can reject those criminal elements, traitors, enemies and others who it deems harmful or “hostile” to its citizens.

The second thing he affirms is that the manner of dealing with immigration is determined by law in the cases of both beneficial and “hostile” immigration. The State has the right and duty to apply its law.

Saint Thomas: “For the Jews were offered three opportunities of peaceful relations with foreigners. First, when foreigners passed through their land as travelers. Secondly, when they came to dwell in their land as newcomers. And in both these respects the Law made kind provision in its precepts: for it is written (Exodus 22:21): ’Thou shalt not molest a stranger [advenam]’; and again (Exodus 22:9): ’Thou shalt not molest a stranger [peregrino].’”

Commentary: Here Saint Thomas acknowledges the fact that others will want to come to visit or even stay in the land for some time. Such foreigners deserved to be treated with charity, respect and courtesy, which is due to any human of good will. In these cases, the law can and should protect foreigners from being badly treated or molested.

Saint Thomas: “Thirdly, when any foreigners wished to be admitted entirely to their fellowship and mode of worship. With regard to these a certain order was observed. For they were not at once admitted to citizenship: just as it was law with some nations that no one was deemed a citizen except after two or three generations, as the Philosopher says (Polit. iii, 1).”

Commentary: Saint Thomas recognizes that there will be those who will want to stay and become citizens of the lands they visit. However, he sets as the first condition for acceptance a desire to integrate fully into what would today be considered the culture and life of the nation.

A second condition is that the granting of citizenship would not be immediate. The integration process takes time. People need to adapt themselves to the nation. He quotes the philosopher Aristotle as saying this process was once deemed to take two or three generations. Saint Thomas himself does not give a timeframe for this integration, but he does admit that it can take a long time.

Read Horvat’s entire analysis of immigration through the eyes of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

RELATED ARTICLE: Gutiérrez: ‘I Think We Can Get 3 or 4, Maybe Even 5 Million People’ Amnesty via Executive Action (+video)

AGENDA: Grinding America Down

All American citizens who hold their FREEDOM dear, and support family values should watch the below listed video entitled “AGENDA: Grinding America Down.”   We’ve received thousands of E-mails each week for 5 years; “AGENDA: Grinding America Down” is one of the most significant presentations we’ve viewed over these past 5 years.

Before you watch “AGENDA: Grinding America Down”, please watch this 19 second video:

The video is about the values you want to ensure your children & your extended family members benefit from, it supports the different religious faiths that provide the foundation upon which human values are based, it’s about supporting the members of the US Armed Forces—many of whom gave their last full measure of devotion in order to defend the Republic—it is mainly about the FREEDOMS accorded to all American citizens in the US Constitution by the Founding Fathers.

AGENDA: Grinding America Down

Using Obama’s own words, when he said that he fully intends to “fundamentally transform” our 238 year old Republic; we now have witnessed his true goal to create a Socialist State by any means necessary.  By repealing President Clinton’s requirement that welfare recipients must work for financial aid from the government, over the past 6 years, Obama has managed to enroll a record number of Americans and illegal immigrants in government welfare program with 40 million on food stamps, and millions of new recipients on the disability rolls.

Obama has been framing traditional US work ethics as the foolish belief that President Ronald Reagan once supported, with President Reagan’s thesis that anyone can lift themselves up by their bootstraps being the promise that always has been America and the success that comes about from hard work.  In order to “fundamentally transform America”,  Obama in his speeches and his bloated bureaucracy has been working to replace President Reagan’s well held belief  in American’s work ethic, that contributed to the most successful economy in the history of mankind with something that has never worked in any country in history.  Obama wants to replace American work ethic with the Marxist principal that government must distribute the wealth created by hard working Americans to those who have little interest in working.  Obama wants to more heavily tax the top 10% of successful American earners who already pay 68% of all the taxes in the nation each year (the bottom 50% of earners in America pay 3% of all the taxes).

Obama’s unrelenting attack on the Second Amendment and the right of American citizen’s to bear arms, and the protections accorded all American citizens by provisions of  the Second Amendment that is under relentless assault by the Obama administration.  Obama’s use of the IRS to suppress the rights of conservative Americans who were trying to exercise their right to participate in a national presidential elections should have a special Prosecutor assigned, but Holder refuses to appoint one.   Obama is also using Holder’s Justice Department to prevent states from issuing voter IDs to endure American citizens only vote once, in the last presidential election 7 million voters voted in two states; voter fraud was not controlled; the fear of rampant voter fraud looms large in the November election.

AGENDA Grinding America Down graph

For a larger view click on the chart

The Obama administration will eventually meet with serious and widespread “unorganized” opposition from American citizens because of his violation of Federal Laws, Immigration Laws, and provisions of the US Constitution.   The  Obama administration has been preparing for possible citizen’s unrest, by creating heavily arming federal police force swat teams in the Capital Police Force, Park Police, DHS, the Wildlife Service, the Marshal Service, in the IRS, the Postal Police, the Department of Defense Police, the Federal Protective Service, the Secret Service, and Obama ‘s National Police Force authorized & funded by the Obamacare Law, while providing DHS with armored vehicles, and purchasing excessive amounts of ammunition (more than the US Army and the US Marine Corps uses each year in training their personnel).

The most important Congressional election in 238 years will be held in about 3 months, we encourage you to support the endorsed Combat Veterans For Congress listed in the attachment.  They have the courage to stand up to bureaucratic excesses, will work to rein in the out of control spending by irresponsible members of Congress & the Obama administration, and will protect and defend the US Constitution.

The Common Core Fight: What Went Wrong, What Went Right, What To Do Next

The Washington Post reported that within two years of an organizational meeting at Bill Gates’ Seattle headquarters, 45 states and the District of Columbia had adopted the Common Core State Standards. President Obama, whose administration was “populated by former Gates Foundation staffers and associates,” was “a major booster.” 

After legislative battles this year, 42 states and the District of Columbia remain in the vise of Common Core, the federal education dictates.

One of these states, Georgia, illustrates the incredible hurdles citizen-activists face in their fight against the united forces of big government and big business.  Senator William Ligon (R-Brunswick) was blocked in his efforts to pass a Common Core withdrawal bill by the Republican governor and Republican-dominated House.

Jane Robbins, senior fellow at the American Principles in Action, which supported Ligon’s bill, comments, “During the last hearing on the bill, we saw dozens of corporate and other well-funded lobbyists parade up to the podium to explain why their interests should trump those of Georgia families.”

I observed this parade, and the smear-campaign against citizen-activists concerned about educational quality and government overreach.  While teachers and parents spoke about developmentally inappropriate assignments, mind-boggling busy-work math, and ideological curricula, the pro-Common Core lobbyists, legislators, superintendents, principals, and teachers seemed to follow a script.  I heard the same phrases repeated – “state-led,” “critical thinking skills,” “locally controlled,” “standards, not curriculum,” and on.

And then I learned that they were following a script.

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Bill Gates. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

The script was linked in the June 7 Washington Post front-page article, “How Bill Gates pulled off the swift Common Core revolution” – published after legislatures had recessed.  These were “Talking Points” developed by the Council of Chief State School Officers, the supposedly independent organization behind Common Core.  CCSSO received over $11 million from the Gates Foundation in 2013.

That Bill Gates was “de facto organizer,” influencing states through donations to teachers unions and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, was hardly a revelation.  In August 2013, blogger Mercedes Schneider reported, “the four organizations primarily responsible for CCSS–[National Governors Association], CCSSO, Achieve, and Student Achievement Partners – have taken $147.9 million from Bill Gates.”  Jane Robbins and others also made the charge long before the Washington Post’s exposé.

The Post reported that within two years of an organizational meeting at Gates’ Seattle headquarters, 45 states and the District of Columbia had adopted the standards. President Obama, whose administration was “populated by former Gates Foundation staffers and associates,” was “a major booster.”

In the Post interview, Gates denied that he had any self-interest, but the article noted, “In February, [Gates’ company] Microsoft announced that it was joining Pearson, the world’s largest educational publisher, to load Pearson’s Common Core classroom materials on Microsoft’s tablet, the Surface.”  This allowed Microsoft to compete for school district spending with rival company Apple, whose iPad dominates in classrooms.

According to a tape released by Glenn Beck last September, in 2009 Gates told the National Conference of State Legislators that he anticipated a “large uniform base of [Common Core] customers.”

More recently, Microsoft’s website warned schools to migrate to the new Microsoft Windows operating system.  Opponents had predicted that computer-administered Common Core tests would require expensive upgrades.

Still, Common Core promotional sites, such as the Georgia pro-Chamber of Commerce Republican blog, Peach Pundit, mocked the notion of “Obamacore” and called Gates’ profit-motive a “conspiracy theory.”

Editor-in-Chief Charlie Harper testified against the Common Core withdrawal bill, while directing the smear campaign through posts and comments. He also is executive director of the non-profit PolicyBEST.

In February, PolicyBEST Policy & Research Director – and Peach Pundit blogger – “Eric the Younger” called a rally in support of Ligon’s bill a “train wreck,” filled with “crazy talk”: “It’s [sic] attendees included Jane Robins [sic], Sen. Judson Hill, Sen. William Ligon, Ralph Hudgens’ wife, “and a few of the other usual suspects.”

He promoted a new coalition that included PolicyBEST, “Better Standards For A Better Georgia.”  The “diverse group . . . brought together through the Georgia Chamber” includes 100 Black Men, Georgia Association of Educational Leaders, Georgia Association of Educators, Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education, Georgia school board and school superintendents associations, Technical College System of Georgia, and the University System of Georgia.  In 2013, 100 Black Men received $583,531 from the Gates Foundation; Georgia Association of Educational Leaders received $179,015 in 2012.

Eric the Younger’s creativity only extends to name-calling, however.

Consider the CCSS “talking point”: “This has always been, and continues to be, a state-led and driven initiative. States voluntarily adopted and are currently implementing the standards. . .  .  These standards are in no way federally-mandated. . . .”

Eric the Younger dutifully wrote, “The Origins of the Common Core State Standards are here in Georgia with our former governor Sonny Perdue and State School Superintendent. . . .”

Elders, like “youngers,” also recited CCSSO’s script.  The U.S. Chamber’s President and CEO Thomas Donahue wrote in the Washington Post, “Common Core is a not curriculum, a federal program or a federal mandate.”

Peach Pundit continued its campaign of smearing and repeating with a February 10 Courier-Herald column.  After charging Common Core opponents with “a campaign of misinformation that at times borders on hysteria,” the writer essentially repeated a talking point: “Common Core is not a curriculum,” but “a set of benchmarks. . . .  The curriculum – what is taught and how – remains up to states and local school systems…”

Cited also was a June 2, 2010, press release announcing then-Governor Sonny Perdue’s release of Common Core state standards that featured a panel discussion with the CEO of the PTA and Leah Luke, 2010 Wisconsin Teacher of the Year.

Where did this idea come from?

The CCSSO toolkit recommends as key spokespeople “State Teachers of the Year,” “Award-winning school leaders and principals,” and “Heads of local PTAs.”

Nothing was left to chance in CCSSO’s well-orchestrated campaign that included strategies for “engaging” teachers, “stakeholders,” elected officials, etc. Provided were fill-in-the-blank “Scene-setting Op-ed,” “Letters to the Editor,” “Local Op-ed and Blog,” and “Teacher Communication Preferences Survey.” There were tips for pitching stories and providing background information to reporters.

Most reporters, indeed, repeated CCSSO’s “talking points.” Now an NBC reporter is on Gates’ payroll.

In spite of overwhelming odds, a couple states rejected Common Core this year, following changing public sentiment.  Pitfalls lie ahead, though.  What these are and tips for fighting them will be discussed next time in Part II.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on the Selous Foundation.

RELATED ARTICLES: 

North Carolina Governor Signs Bill to Revise Common Core
Common Core in Louisiana: Two Days, Two Lawsuits
A July 21, 2014, Update on Common Core, PARCC, and Smarter Balanced
American Federation of Teachers: “Remediating” Duncan and Retaining the “Corrupted” Common Core

Muslims in Miami scream “We Are HAMAS!”

Pro Hamas Rally Miami, FL – Muslims Scream, “Let’s go HAMAS. We are HAMAS!” We present a detailed examination of the HAMAS Charter, which states:

The historical dimension of the Islamic Resistance Movement [HAMAS] originates from its adoption of Islam as a system of life. It reaches far back to the birth of the Islamic Message and to the Pious Predecessors. Therefore, Allah is its goal, the Messenger its leader, and the Quran its constitution.

We also have an expert war analysis by Dr. Martin Sherman.

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Islamic State torches 1,800-year-old church after expelling Christians

The Nexus of Illegal Drugs and Illegal Immigration

All manner of reasons are being offered to explain the influx of thousands of illegal aliens, not the least of which is President Obama’s open invitation to Latin Americans to come here with the promise of becoming citizens at some point. By overloading the southern border, this has opened the doors to criminals and potential terrorists as well.

In March, the Huffington Post took note of the other far lesser known or discussed reason our southern border is so porous. “Americans Spent About A Trillion Dollars on Illegal Drugs in the Last Decade.” With that kind of money awaiting them, you can be sure that the drug cartels are going to make every effort to satisfy the market.

The article was about a Rand Corporation report by its Drug Policy Research Center as requested by the Office of National Drug Control Policy that tracked total expenditures, consumption, and number of users of marijuana, cocaine (including crack), heroin and methamphetamine. The decade tracked was 2000 to 2010.

Despite federal spending between $40 and $50 billion to fight the war on drugs, “American spending levels on illegal drugs stayed more or less the same.” RAND drew some of its data from the Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring program, but it is no longer funded by the federal government which, one must assume, leaves it unable to know if the market for illegal drugs has expanded, shrunk or stayed the same.

criminal-immigrants

Criminal illegals.

The news about the illegal immigration from Latin American nations has a side to it that has not received much news coverage. It has to do with the views of four-star Marine Corps General John Kelly who heads the U.S. Military’s Southern Command. In a July 8 essay in the Military Times, “Central America Drug War a Dire Threat to U.S. National Security”, Gen. Kelly noted how the drug cartels have overwhelmed the governments of Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, rendering any opposition to them too great a threat.

“Due to the insatiable U.S. demand for drugs, particularly cocaine, heroin and now methamphetamines, all produced in Latin American and smuggled into the U.S.” said Gen. Kelly, they have been left “near broken societies” in which the rule of law has been destroyed. How bad is it? According to the Migration Policy Institute in Washington, D.C., applications for asylum in neighboring countries—mostly Mexico and Costa Rica—are up 712%,

Cutting off aid to these countries as has been suggested by some will turn them into entities that are little more than names on a map and increase the distress of their law-abiding populations. Indeed, because so many of them have already come to the U.S., the children arriving here have families waiting for them. Seventy-three percent of the 47,017 minors apprehended at the border were from Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala. They will stay here to be processed by a system that has not deterred the estimated eleven million illegal aliens already living here.

Cartel-Smuggling-Routes

For a larger view click on the map.

According to Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations committee, despite the illegal immigration crisis the U.S. has encountered, Gen. Kelly’s U.S. Southern Command is “only sourced (financed) at five percent of the capacity it needs.” Reducing the funding to the U.S. military has been a priority of the Obama agenda.

Allen West, a former Lt. Colonel and member of the House of Representatives, writing on his July 8 blog, said, “We know Obama has a penchant for turning generals who don’t toe his line and agenda points—like former CENTCOM Commander Marine Corps General Mattis—into civilians, I certainly hope we don’t see another truth-telling general, a commander, called on the carpet by Obama’s lapdog Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel—or worse, getting a call from the Capo di tutti Capi Valerie Jarrett.

The Center for Immigration Studies reports that “a significant majority of children coming across are not unaccompanied alien children according to the definition found in federal law.” As noted above they have family here in the U.S. Moreover, “there is little evidence to suggest that the recent arrivals are victims of trafficking which involves coercion.” Their families have paid smugglers to bring them to the U.S.”

While we read and hear references to those who smuggle immigrants to the U.S. border, known as “coyotes”, an Associated Press report noted a 2010 U.N. study that estimated this “service” generated $6.6. billion for the smugglers as the migrants pay anywhere from $4,000 to $10,000 each for the journey across thousands of miles “in the care of smuggling networks that in turn pay off government officials, gangs operating on trains and drug cartels controlling the routes north.”

The appetite for illegal drugs that has been a part of life in the U.S. for many citizens has contributed to the illegal alien flow from the Latin American nations whose governments have been undermined by the drug cartels. It’s a vicious circle that is not likely to be broken any time soon, if ever.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew: U.S. corporations must be “punished” with new penalties and restrictions

More American jobs and the products that make your life better are under attack by those in Washington who do not seek a solution, but merely want to mask the failures of our horrific income tax code.

Currently, America’s corporations pay 39.1% in income taxes – the highest tax rate of 33 industrialized countries!

To stay alive under this punitive tax structure, American businesses first moved their profits to foreign countries. Now they are moving their headquarter operations.

And how is Washington responding? Incredibly, instead of addressing the real problem – the income tax code – Treasury Secretary Jack Lew has stated these corporations must be “punished” with new penalties and restrictions!

Wasn’t it Albert Einstein who said insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”?

It’s time for our nation’s tax insanity to end. Our country does not need more punishing economic policy.

Corporations leaving vs FairTax

What we need – what we must demand – is for the FairTax® legislation to be given an immediate vote in Congress.

AFFT needs your immediate support with your most generous donation. We must send a strong and unified message to Washington that the American people want a strong and robust economy.

Our nation needs the millions of jobs that will result from corporations flooding into our country once the FairTax is enacted. The FairTax legislation will make America the “go-to” place for investing and growing a business.

Please join me in standing FairTax strong.

Send your gift today: www.FairTax.org/Donate

Let’s tell Washington that America defines economic patriotism as the FairTax Plan. 

Mark Zuckerberg is promoting the Queerest of Folks on Facebook

Facebook has over 1.23 billion users of which 945 million are mobile users with 757 million daily users. There are many families that use Facebook to share photos, videos and leave updates about their lives. A companies culture is determined by its CEO and Mark Zuckerberg is no exception. His stand on various issues is well known and his relationship with President Obama is well publicized.

Zuckerberg appears to be concerned about NSA spying using his platform and has said so publicly and privately to President Obama. However, while they may disagree on who is better at spying on individuals, the NSA or Facebook, Obama and Zuck agree on one thing — gay is good. Zuck 4 gays may be the best way to describe his embracing of the homosexual lifestyle.

facebook gay logoZuck is so pro-homosexual that he is actively reaching out to and promoting the queerest of folks on Facebook in the United States and United Kingdom.

 from the UK Telegraph in her article “Facebook’s 71 gender options come to UK users: Following its successful integration in the US, US Facebook users can choose from one of 50 gender options” writes:

UK Facebook users can now choose from one of 71 gender options, including asexual, polygender and two-spirit person, following the feature’s successful integration in the US.

Users can choose a different gender option from the previous male and female choices by selecting ‘custom’ in the gender tab of their profiles.

In addition, people who select a custom gender will now have the ability to choose the pronoun they’d like to be referred to publicly — male (he/his), female (she/her) or neutral (they/their).

Talking about gender is like talking about nature. There are only two genders, however, there are many forms of sexual behaviors and Zuck is tapping into that market. “Facebook worked with UK groups Press for Change and Gendered Intelligence to add 21 new options to ensure the list best reflected the ways UK users may choose to describe themselves,” notes Williams. Twenty-one new options on how to describe themselves? Really?

Let’s look at a few options that are so queer that they defy description: Female to male trans man, Female to male transgender man, Female to male transsexual man, F2M, Gender neutral and Hermaphrodite. To read the full list click here.

The Brits have many ways of describing a homosexual. Understanding this, there are some options that Zuck and his UK Facebook team may want to consider adding to the list: Bugger, BugR, Bugger2Bugger or the short form B2B (not to be confused with Business2Business unless one is giving the business to his/her M2F or F2M partner), Queer Mary or QM, F2F (you fill in the f-word of your choice), HomoUK, UKHomo and of course one of my favorites from Mel Brookssmuck“. You get the idea.

Ayn Rand warned,

“The uncontested absurdities of today are the accepted slogans of tomorrow. They come to be accepted by degrees, by dint of constant pressure on one side and constant retreat on the other – until one day when they are suddenly declared to be the country’s official ideology.”

Zuck is queering Facebook. Parents, families and the 98.4% of straight users in the U.S. beware. He is pandering to the 1.6% in the U.S. who are homosexuals.

Zuck recently friended us on Facebook. Let’s see if he unfriends us.

RELATED VIDEO: Before you share photos online, watch this video —

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EDITORS NOTE: The featured photo of Mark Zuckerberg marching with 700 Facebook employees in the 2013 San Francisco gay pride parade is by Mike Matas/Facebook.

Obama Executive Order once again attacks Christian Organizations — Will the Catholic Bishops stand up to him?

Obama launches a new attack on Christian organizations by signing yet another Executive Order that forces them to hire homosexuals!

The $17 trillion question:

Are the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and the leaders of the Holy Catholic Church going to stand up to King Obama this time around and have every single Catholic institution file a law suit against this liberal administration or are we just going to continue to roll over and take our orders from the “Liberal sees” in the White House instead of the “Holy See” in the Vatican?

Hope all is well as I truly mean that. Seriously – “Hope all is well”…With the way this world is going today – when was the last time that “all was well”? It’s almost impossible to watch the news or read the newspaper in the mornings with a positive attitude as there are more conflicts going on around the world in this day and age than I have seen in my 56 years. I honestly think that if we were to combine all of the conflicts, violence and wars going on all over the world today and put them all together as One Big War – it would be equivalent to a World War III…It’s that bad and we have grown almost immune to it. Nothing phases us anymore. Even in our own country – where we fight the greatest war of all – “OBAMA’S WAR AGAINST CHRISTIANS”.

Friends, when the President of the Free World is able to use his dictatorial powers at free will – with the incompetent Congress scratching their heads at King Obama’s every move – why do we even have a government in the “Land of the Free”? Who is governing what? What is governing who? Where are the checks and balances? Why are there so many checks that don’t balance? Why do we have a House of Representatives? Why do we have a Senate? What does the term “judiciary” mean? How come we had never heard the term “Executive Order” until the “Executive & Almighty One” put his feet up on his desk in our White House back in January of 2009″?

And, if you have not heard the latest coming from the “Gay President” – (there is nothing wrong with saying that because in Obama’s world – anything goes and he is proud of that) – get ready for yet another “Executive Order” coming from the “left-handed” one. Beyond excruciating. Beyond surreal. Beyond the Constitution of the United States. The Constitution has no bearing in the way King Kenya runs our country. It hasn’t for the past 6 years…and counting…That pen and cell phone have wreaked havoc on our nation, our unborn, our Christian communities, our beloved citizens…

And, while Obama should be taking care of the more critical “world crisis” issues all around the world and even at our own borders (where a humanitarian fiasco is about to take place with the tens of thousands of illegal immigrants coming over from the Mexican border) – while watching former KGB wild man, Vladimir Putin, do as he pleases in shooting down airliners as if it were a “Russian roulette” game – Obama has no clue as to what is transpiring in Russia and the Ukraine – let alone, the volatile Middle East, even among our own ally, Israel, and their relentless struggle against the Palestinians. Does he have a clue of what is going on in Syria and Egypt? How about the 276 Nigerian young ladies who disappeared months ago at the hands of Boko Haram in his home continent of Africa?

No, Obama thinks it is more important to continue to attack the Catholic Church and the Christian organizations in our country by signing on more Executive Orders to try our patience and to tick off all the wholesome Christian faithful in this country. Obama seems to be focused on this issue as he knows that he only has a little more than two years left on his 8-year contract to try to turn our beloved United States of America into the “Divided States of Obama” – his twisted version of Sodom and Gomorrah. So, where are the President of the United States’ priorities at when so much conflict and strife is going on around the world? And, is signing a “Gay Executive Order” a priority in the Home of the Brave while the rest of the world is burning?

So, without further adieu, please take a look at the this article from our good friends at Catholic Vote as Joshua Mercer tells it like it is. This latest Executive Order by King Obama demands that all Federal Contractors and Subcontractors grant special treatment based on “sexual orientation” and “gender equity”. Truly amazing and absolutely unfair to every Christian organization – including the Holy Catholic Church – that does NOT believe in the immoral act of sodomy and the homosexual lifestyle. Forcing a conservative and religious organization like Catholic Charities to hire homosexual employees while knowing that it is against their religious beliefs (based on Holy Scripture) – is as blatant an act as I have ever seen. And, if the USCCB, our Church leaders and wonderful organizations like Catholic Charities, do not stand up for their religious freedoms like the bold and courageous Hobby Lobby did against the liberal Obama administration (and won) – once again, we can all kiss our Holy Rosaries a fond farewell and continue to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet over and over and over again until all 50 states in our beloved United States all turn gay…19 and counting…

May God give the USCCB the intestinal fortitude to instruct every single Catholic institution in the United States to file a lawsuit against this administration.

May all Christian organizations in the United States stand up for their religious liberty and freedoms and take this administration head on!

IN GOD WE MUST!!!



CV
Dear CV Friend, 

The Supreme Court has already rebuked Obama twice on religious liberty. 

But that isn’t stopping this president from launching another attack on religious liberty. 

This time, Obama is using the purse strings of the federal government to marginalize employers with religious convictions. 

President Obama today signed an executive order which demands that all federal contractors and subcontractors grant special treatment based on “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” 

The executive order signed by Obama thankfully preserves an exemption put in place by President George W. Bush which allows religious employers the freedom to favor employees of a certain religion in making hiring decisions. So under the new rules, a religious university could not fire a teacher for being a lesbian, but could fire her because she’s not a Catholic. 

Legal experts say that Obama’s new executive order will launch a flood of lawsuits against employers who have deeply-held convictions that certain kinds of sexual behavior is inconsistent with their moral or religious beliefs. 

The executive order, expected to take full effect in 2015, will affect 24,000 companies employing approximately 28 million American workers, or about one-fifth of the country’s workforce. 

President Obama could have easily issued this executive order for LGBT employees while maintaining a robust exemption for religious liberty. 

Once again, Obama has shown his strong hostility to religious expression in American life. In his mind, we have only “freedom to worship” inside the four walls of our church. But we dare not practice “freedom of religion” where we take our faith to the public square. If we do that, Obama believes that we must also sacrifice any religious principles out of sync with the federal government. 

In Obama’s mind, it’s ok if you go to Church on Sunday, but don’t you dare act like a Christian any other day of the week. 

Joshua Mercer 
Political Director

Common Core: “Effing the Ineffable”

“’One size fits all’ may be a term of mockery used by people who disdain the top-down solutions of centralized power; in the technocratic vision, ‘one size fits all’ describes the ideal.” – Andrew Ferguson

In his column “The Common Core Commotion: Haven’t we seen this movie before?” Andrew Ferguson gives both an historical and technocratic analysis of Common Core State Standards. Common Core is the end game of a process that began under President Ronald Reagan and is now in full force under President Barack Obama.

Ferguson writes, “The logic of education reform always points to more education reform. With experts having shown they didn’t really know how to improve education on a broad scale, and with state school officials having proved themselves in many cases to be cheats and bunco artists, the solution was clear to every educationist: State school officials should get together with experts to come up with a new reform. Except this time it would work.”

Ferguson describes the “world view” on education by technocrats like Bill Gates and those within government run education from the U.S. Department of Education to the local School Board. Ferguson describes Bill Gates thusly:

His faith is technocratic and materialist: In the end he believes the ability of highly credentialed observers to identify and solve problems through the social sciences is theoretically limitless. ‘Studies’ and ‘research’ unlock the human secret. This is the animating faith of most educationists, too. All human interactions can be dispassionately observed and their separate parts identified, isolated, analyzed, and quantified according to some version of the scientific method. The resulting data will yield reliable information about how and why we behave as we do, and from this process can be derived formulas that will be universally applicable and repeatable.

Ferguson concludes with, “The delays and distancing suggest a cloudy future for the Common Core. Even its advocates say that the best possible outcome for now involves a great deal more unpleasantness: The tests will be given to many students beginning next spring, and the results will demonstrate the catastrophic state of learning in American schools. Of course, we knew that, but still. ‘Maybe this will be a reality check,’ one booster told me the other day. ‘People will take a look at the results and say, ‘Aha! So this is what they’ve been talking about!’ It will send a very strong signal.’”

Ferguson notes, ” “Eff the Ineffable” is the technocrat’s motto.” Common Core is the technocrats way of Effing the Ineffable.

The following chart is courtesy of Education News and compares the traditional and Common Core education models:

Description

Type #1

Traditional

Classical Learning

Type #2

CSCOPE and

Common Core Standards

 

Progressive,

Radical Social Justice Agenda

     
Instruction Direct instruction by teacher Self-directed learning, group-think Emphasis on:Subjectivity, feelings, emotions, beliefs, multiculturalism, political correctness, social engineering, globalism, evolution, sexual freedom, contraceptives, environmental extremism, global warming and climate change, victimization, diversity, acceptance of homosexuality as normal, redistribution of wealth

 

 

De-emphasis on:

Declaration of Independence, Bill of Rights, Constitution, national sovereignty, Founding Fathers, American exceptionalism

 

     
Curriculum Academic, fact-based, skills, research Social concerns, project-based, constructivism, subjective, uses unproven fads and theories
     
Teacher’s Role Authority figure; sets the plan for the class; academic instruction Facilitator
     
Student’s Role Learn from teacher; focus on factual learning, develop foundation skills for logical and analytical reasoning, independent thinking Students teach each other; focus on feelings, emotions, opinions; group-think
     
English, Language Arts, Reading (ELAR) Phonics; classical literature; cursive handwriting; grammar; usage; correct spelling; expository, persuasive, research writing Whole language, balanced literacy,Guided Reading; no cursive writing instruction so cannot read primary documents of Founding Fathers
     
Mathematics “Drill and Skill,” four math functions learned to automaticity Fuzzy math, rejects drill and memorization of math facts, dependent on calculators
     
Social Studies Focus on American heritage and exceptionalism, national sovereignty, Founding documents Diversity, multiculturalism, globalization, revisionist history, political correctness
     
Character Development Pro-faith, self-control, personal responsibility, self-discipline, solid work ethic Secular, moral relativism, anti-faith, victimization
     
Equality Equal opportunities Equal outcomes
     
Assessment Students evaluated by earned grades, objective tests Inflated grades, subjective assessments evaluated based upon value system of grader, group grades
     
Outcomes Objective tests (right-or-wrong answers), emphasis on academic skills and knowledge Subjective assessments; emphasis on holistic, “feel good” scoring

Original chart produced by Carole H. Haynes, Ph.D. – chaynes777@gmail.comRevised chart produced 11.04.13.

Americans Max Steinberg and Sean Carmeli Among the IDF fallen in Gaza

This weekend the IDF released the names of 13 members of the elite Golani Brigade who fell while engaged in heavy fighting in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge.  While supporters of Israel grieve for all of the IDF fallen and  those that were downed in mortal combat against the Jihadis of Hamas and other terrorist groups in Gaza, two were dual Israeli-American citizens.

Max Steinberg and Sean Carmeli, z”l

Max Steinberg, 24, of Woodlands Hills, California was killed when the APC that he and several others were riding in was hit by an IED. The second was Sean Carmeli 21, who was born of Israeli parents and raised in South Padre Island, Texas before returning to spend his high school years in Ra’anana Israeli. Carmeli was killed like Steinberg during the intense fighting in Shejaiya, what Israel PM Netanyahu called a “terrorist bastion” laden with rocket launching sites.

We learned yesterday of the injuries sustained by another dual Israeli American Golani Brigade member Jordan Low of Pikesville, Maryland who was injured in a fire while clearing buildings in Gaza.  Like Steinberg and Carmeli, this young American –Israeli left for Israel after high school to enter military training with the IDF. He has been removed for treatment at a hospital in Tel Aviv and his family will be flying to Israel to visit him.

These young Israeli American Jews are indicative of the commitment of many young diaspora Jews who make aliyah to Israel to undergo training in elite and regular IDF combat units.

According to the Lone Soldier Center  in Memory of Michael Levin, more than 5,700 Jewish men and women of different nationalities volunteer for service in the IDF, Israel’s armed forces, who have no biological relatives in the Jewish state.  Two sons of my former rabbi at a synagogue in Fairfield, Connecticut volunteered to serve in elite combat units of the IDF.  During Operation Cast lead in 2009, we wrote about the experience of  Givati Brigade member Zachary Rowen –Taylor, another Californian ,  who, like fallen Golani Brigade member Steinberg,  was a Sgt. Commander and sniper.  Rowen-Taylor, we understand has been recalled to active duty  as a reservist to serve, once again, in Gaza.

Steinberg’s family in California was interviewed by the Jewish Journal, “A Fallen Soldier, found his purpose in Israel”.  His story is similar to that of these other soldiers who decide to make aliyah and become Israeli citizens.   Here are some excerpts from the Jewish Journal article:

Just over two years ago, two brothers and a sister – Max, Jake and Paige Steinberg – returned to Los Angeles from a whirlwind tour of Israel.

The trip, which was sponsored by Taglit-Birthright, impacted all three. But none more than Max, who was 22 at the time, and the trio’s oldest. Then a student at Pierce College, Steinberg wasn’t finding what he wanted in school and was unsure of his path. But he was sure of at least one thing—Israel was where he was meant to be.

So, only three months after returning to California in July 2012, Steinberg went back to Israel in September, but this time to become a soldier in the Golani infantry brigade of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), one of the IDF’s most decorated units.

And early Sunday morning, as he and his unit made their way down a Gaza City street in the neighborhood of Shejaiya, a Hamas stronghold, their armored personnel carrier (APC) struck what was likely an improvised explosive device (IED) or a mine. The explosion killed seven soldiers, including Steinberg. A source in Israel’s Los Angeles  consulate said that the attack occurred around 1:30 am,  Israel time .

As to what motivated Max to undergo rigorous Golani training:

At just five feet and three inches, he took on nicknames like “Mighty Max” and “Little Dynamo.”

Prospering in one of the IDF’s most elite units, his mother said, helped him “earn respect for himself.”

Additionally, added his father, he viewed military service as an obligation were he to ever make aliyah to Israel.

“If he ever ultimately decided this was going to be his new home, not serving was just not an option for him,” Stuart said. And if he was going to serve, he wanted to be a Golani infantryman. “Anything less than that would be not as meaningful for him.”

In Sean Carmeli’s case, his family had returned to Israel from South Padre, Texas. The Algemeiner reported the his circumstances in an article, “Small South Texan Jewish Community Mourns Death of IDF Sergeant Sean Carmeli, Killed in Gaza

The Jewish community of a south Texas beach town was in mourning on Sunday after it was informed that one of its sons was among the Israeli troops that fell in a bloody Gaza battle on Saturday night.

“The whole community feels like they lost their own son,” Rabbi Yonatan, the family’s rabbi told The Algemeiner on Sunday. “The family is completely devastated,” Rabbi Asher Hecht, another rabbi/friend said.

Sean was the youngest of three children, and with two older sisters, Gal and Or, was an only son.

The last time Sean’s father spoke to his son was on Wednesday when Sean shared that his army officer had quizzed him over an unrelated minor leg injury. Responding to the officer’s suggestion that he may not be fit for service, Sean had said, “Bruise or no bruise I am coming with you.”

“He was enthusiastic to go in and to fight for the Jewish people, and he gave his life for the Jewish people,” Rabbi Hecht said.

The rabbis said that the local Shoova Israel Synagogue on South Padre Island is dedicated and named in memory of Sean’s grandfather Nissim whom Sean was named after.

As to what you can do to support of IDF soldiers serving in the ground incursion in Gaza, you might consider contacting, the American Friends of LIBI that “provides for the educational, religious, medical and recreational needs of Israeli soldiers.”  Then there is the Lone Soldier Center in Memory of Michael Levin. My colleague Lisa Benson, presently on a tour of South Carolina, called with information on the program of No More Jewish Victims of the One Israel Fund that is raising funds for support equipment for IDF soldiers and residents of Judea and Samaria. Also there is Pizza IDF that delivers pizza, ice cream and other food to front-line units.

1000 Pizzas were delivered to an IDF reserve unit on the Israel Gaza frontier with contributions from both Christians and Jews around the world. That was the result of an international campaign by a couple in the community of Eli in Judea and Samaria.

Most importantly, please offer misheberachs (prayers) for those brave IDF service personnel in Israel’s fight to defeat the Jihadis of Hamas backed by Iran, Qatar and Turkey. They are the defenders of the Jewish nation of Israel, America’s only reliable ally facing extremist Islam threatening the West.

Watch this You Tube Video with a Misheberach for Tzahal:

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on the New English Review.