What is the Tunnel Wall?

.........................A timely collection of conservative articles about liberal influences on politics and culture in America ......................

Monday, March 30, 2015

Indiana and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act


NRO: Liberals against Religious Liberty in Indiana "Indiana has adopted a state-level version of the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), thereby imposing a “strict scrutiny” legal standard when the state government or local powers pass laws that interfere with the free exercise of religion. For this, Governor Mike Pence and Indiana’s legislators have been denounced as gay-hating monsters, a claim that was never made about President Bill Clinton, who signed the federal RFRA, or about the people and powers of such liberal states as Connecticut, which is one of the 20 states with a RFRA. Another dozen or so states have constitutional provisions similar to those in RFRA." . . .

NRO: On “discrimination,” Jim Crow, etc.  . . . "To allege that RFRA incites rampant discrimination on the level of Jim Crow–era segregation ignores a fundamental distinction: Jim Crow segregation was state-sponsored discrimination. Regardless of what opinion a shopkeeper or a business owner had toward racial minorities, the law required him to discriminate. To give relief to a particular wedding vendor who feels uncomfortable servicing a gay wedding isn’t in any way comparable to state-sponsored discrimination." . . .

If you read only one of these articles, make it be this one:
NRO: A calm look at Indiana’s new Religious Freedom Restoration Act and its precedents.  . . . "This opinion generated an immediate backlash: How could a person be punished for exercising his sincerely held religious beliefs? In 1993, then-Representative Charles Schumer of New York introduced the Religious Freedom Restoration Act in the House of Representatives. Its counterpart bill in the Senate was co-sponsored by Senator Edward Kennedy. The bill enjoyed such wide-ranging bipartisan support that it passed the House on a voice vote, passed the Senate by a vote of 97 to 3, and was promptly signed into law by President Clinton. (Imagine such a significant law passing today with this kind of vote!)" . . .
The law states that the federal “Government shall not substantially burden a person’s exercise of religion” unless it “is in furtherance of a compelling governmental interest” and “is the least restrictive means of furthering that compelling governmental interest.” At a minimum, RFRA attempted to reverse the Court’s construction of the Free Exercise clause in the Smith case.

Close to crunch time; how are the Iran nuclear talks going?

 Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Yeshiva World News  "Negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program entered a critical phase on Monday with differences still remaining less than two days before a deadline for the outline of an agreement. With the March 31 target fast approaching, the top diplomats from the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, Germany and Iran were meeting to try . . ."

NRO: Iran’s Breakout Capacity . . . "The success of any accord, however, hinges on what “breakout” means and whether a year is enough time to detect and stop an Iranian drive to the bomb. A closer look at both questions suggests that a year is not nearly as long as it might sound." . . .

ObamaCaroline Glick: Managing Obama’s war against Israel
 . . . "As Max Boot explained Wednesday in The Wall Street Journal, the administration’s animosity toward Israel is a function of Obama’s twin strategic aims, both evident since he entered office: realigning US policy in the Middle East toward Iran and away from its traditional allies Israel and the Sunni Arab states, and ending the US’s strategic alliance with Israel." . . .
"Obama has thrown caution to the winds in a last-ditch effort to convince Iranian dictator Ali Khamenei to sign a deal with him. Last month the administration published a top secret report on Israel’s nuclear installations. Last week, Obama’s director of national intelligence James Clapper published an annual terrorism threat assessment that failed to mention either Iran or Hezbollah as threats."
 Michael Ramirez Cartoon
Is Iran building nukes in North Korea? . . . " Now comes word that North Korea may be harboring an Iranian nuclear bomb facility.  If true, it would make any deal with Iran an exercise in futility – which is probably why the White House isn't saying anything about it." . . .

Lt. Gen. Flynn – “Incredible Policy Confusion” While There Is A Complete Breakdown of Order in the Mid-East  . . . " The key is the verification system and CIA Director John Brennan has assured Americans that we would know what Iran is doing with their nuclear program. When asked about Brennan’s statement, Flynn responded with a question, how can we know what Iran is doing, we didn’t even know that one of our closest allies, the Saudis, were going in to bomb Yemen?' ” . . .

Obama Creates Chaos and Calls it 'Peace'  'President Obama has surrendered to Iran’s fanatical thirst for nukes, and now all of Iran’s Muslim enemies are going to war, because they understand the mullahs a lot better than Obama does." . . .
. . . "But our guy Obama has made everything worse, by siding with the two most extreme and murderous forces in the region, the mullahs of Iran on the Shi’ite side, and the Muslim Brotherhood on the Sunni side."

Bye-Bye Harry Reid

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Harry Reid, partisan brawler, gets pattycake treatment from the press . . . “Faced with Republican obstruction over Obama judiciary nominees, Harry Reid blew up the filibuster. Faced with Republican obstruction against ObamaCare, Harry Reid used the reconciliation process — a budgeting process — to pass ObamaCare. On the campaign trail, Harry Reid made stuff up, using his vantage point as Majority Leader to get media credibility. Who remembers his nonsense about Mitt Romney’s taxes?” (Reid falsely claimed he had information that Romney hadn’t paid any taxes for years.)" . . .

Political Cartoons by Jerry Holbert 

Legal Insurrection  "There have been few people as destructive to our political process and discourse as Harry Reid. His pugnacious antics have been a feature here since the inception of this blog.
"Finally, he’s retiring."

 Krauthammer: Harry Reid ‘A Disgrace’ To The Senate [VIDEO]  “ 'He failed as a partisan because nine Senators of his party lost reelection, but he succeeded in protecting the president from having to exercise the veto,” Krauthammer added. “And in order to achieve that, he killed his own institution.' ”

Claim: White House adviser Valerie Jarrett once said she seeks "to help change America to be a more Islamic country."

"The level of influence Jarrett holds with the Obama administration has prompted many detractors to complain she wields too much control over the President and decisions about who should have access to him, and one expression that detraction commonly takes is the assertion Jarrett is a foreign-born Islamic "mole" who is pushing for (or furthering) a Muslim agenda through the executive branch. The quote cited above is a typical example, holding that while Jarrett was an undergraduate psychology student at Stanford University in 1977, she proclaimed herself to be an Iranian who sought "to help change America to be a more Islamic country" and she felt "like it is going well in the transition of using freedom of religion in America against itself.' "
 . . .
"Valerie was born in Shiraz during the Bowmans' sojourn in Iran; she returned to the U.S. with her parents in 1962 (when she was five years old). . . We've found no evidence Valerie Jarrett is (or ever was) Muslim, her only apparent connection to that religion being the incidental one that she temporarily lived in a predominantly Muslim country with her American parents for the first few years of her life."

With that being said. . .

Valerie Jarrett was offered a role as a White House Senior Advisor at the very beginning of the Obama administration in January 2009 and now holds the position of Senior Advisor to the President of the United States. President Obama has said he consults Jarrett on every major decision, and the New Republic's Noam Scheiber reported thus of her influence with the White House:  Read more

Sunday, March 29, 2015

What have those fifty million voters in 2008 and 2012 inflicted America with?

Obama's One Fine Mess of Potage
 "In the Bible, Esau sold his birthright for a mess of potage -- some red lentil soup, to be exact. Looking at the week’s events, it seems that this country has sold its glorious birthright of constitutional government by honest men and women for a mess of potage -- a false promise of hope and change delivered by a glib huckster and his shady friends. The deceit and lawlessness of Obama and those around him and the consequences have never been clearer than they were this week." . . .
 Nothing shows better the unprincipled nature of the administration and the acquiescence of the media than the stories of Bowe Bergdahl, who this week was charged with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, and Hillary Clinton’s destruction of her email server’s records. Both Obama and Clinton operate on the not unreasonable assumption that voters have memories no longer than a nanosecond and the complaisant press will be all too ready to help bury history.    More.
Max Boot: A White House That Can’t Admit a Mistake  "It is a danger in all White Houses: the longer an administration stays in office, the more detached it becomes from reality. The Obama administration is now exhibiting advanced signs of this political malady."
 But sticking with a story (stories!) that doesn’t pass the laugh test does critical damage to an administration’s credibility.  Full article.
 : The Conversation About Iran Obama Wants
"Even at the 11th hour, as we may be days away from the signing of a bad deal with Iran, it is not too late for the U.S. to step back from the brink of folly. A demonstration of strength and principle on Obama’s part, however unlikely it may seem today, would be a devastating blow to Iran and perhaps actually compel them to start making concessions that might enable the president to keep his campaign promises about the nuclear threat."

 Roger L Simon:  Obama the Crazy Pilot 
"Obama and his minions are huddled wherever they’re huddled, busy destroying the Western World with their bizarre policies and eagerness to make a deal with Iran that is so desperate it makes the word pathetic seem pathetic. The results of this desperation have been wretched, a fascistic new Persian Empire emerging from Libya to Yemen . . ."

Pro-Hassan Rouhani Iranian editor defects while covering nuclear talks in Lausanne
 . . . “The US negotiating team are mainly there to speak on Iran’s behalf with other members of the 5+1 countries and convince them of a deal,” he said.?"

Black Quill & Ink on the climate change debate

"The issue of global warming is one of several issues which currently divides America and yet it is one that can be so easily resolved.

"Clearly there are two camps regarding the issue of global warming. There are the enthusiasts who see the planet literally melting away and there are the deniers who see a global attempt to redistribute wealth from western democracies in the name of global warming

"There are at least two venerable and public supporters of these two positions; Al Gore, former Vice President of the United States who supports addressing global warming and an opponent of man made global warming, Chris Horner, a senior fellow at the climate contrarian Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI). These two outspoken men are informed and passionate for their respective position and thus, out of respect for all Americans and in an effort to put this issue aside,they should have a widely publicized national debate."  . . .
 Climate change deniers should be punished, Al Gore has said, adding that politicians in particular should be made to pay a price for rejecting “accepted science”. He stopped short of suggesting what that punishment might be.

 The tip of the climate spending iceberg

"Getting a hand on Climate Crisis, Inc.’s fear and money machine is not easy – and few people understand just how enormous, interlocking and self-perpetuating it is. My article this week presents an overview that will hopefully begin opening people’s eyes. It summarizes the six strategies the alarmist industry is using to advance its agenda and protect its access to tens of billions in taxpayer and consumer dollars: climate research, renewable energy research and implementation, regulatory fiats, a new UN climate treaty, vicious attacks on anyone who contests climate chaos claims, and thought control in every venue of possible debate." . . .

Former Navy SEAL To General: Disobey Obama If Necessary And Have Bergdahl Trial (Video)

The Gateway Pundit

" Carl Higbie, former U.S. Navy SEAL and author of “Battle on the Home Front,” joined Steve Malzberg to discuss his take on the Bowe Bergdahl fallout as well as the latest from the battle against ISIS.

"Higbie told Steve there are safeguards in place to assure that if you have a gripe against your commanders in the field that the Army is required to investigate the charges. So, the White House argument that Bergdahl left base to search for another unit to complain to is ridiculous.
"Higbie added this on the Bowe Bergdahl investigation:

“I call on the general, right now, who is ever overseeing this to make sure this goes to trial no matter what. And if you have to disobey a direct order from the president, do it.”

Alan Caruba: But What Does the Supreme Leader Say?

"What Americans have a hard time understanding is that, for all the Iranian negotiators, the outcome of the nuclear arms deal that the United States is leading all comes down to just one man, Sayyed Ali-Khamenei, otherwise known as the Supreme Leader of Iran.

"In the 21st century, it is hard to comprehend that a nation could be ruled by a man whose powers supersede that nation’s president, its civil government, its judiciary and its military. Iran has had only one other Supreme Leader since its founding in 1979, Ruhollah Khomeini who held the position until his death in 1989. The 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran overthrew the Shah in order to secure greater freedom, but the Iranians ended up more servile than before." . . . 

 Jeanine Pirro: America Needs To Stop Sleeping With the Enemy ((Video)
 "On Saturday night’s Justice,  Judge Jeanine used the phrase “sleeping with the enemy” to describe the creepy, cozy relationship between Obama Regime and the Iranian Regime.

“ 'More American blood has been spilled by Iran and the terrorism it sponsors in the Middle East than by any other country,” Pirro stated. “Iran says its within its rights to enrich uranium. That’s like saying a proven mass murderer living next door to a daycare center has the right to buy as many AK-47s as he wants. Mr. President, America needs to stop sleeping with the enemy, dancing with the devil, and writing love letters to those who want to kill us.' ” . . .

The Weekly Standard: Iranian Defector: ‘U.S. Negotiating Team Mainly There to Speak on Iran’s Behalf’:

Saturday, March 28, 2015

NBC: Allies Fear U.S. Leaking info to Iran

Legal Insurrection   “Saudi Arabia and other countries simply don’t trust the United States any more.” From...from...MSNBC?

"As if things in the Middle East couldn’t get any worse, we’re now at a point where our allies don’t trust us. It’s becoming quite clear that the only person who thinks Obama’s pursuit of a deal with Iran is a good idea, is Obama.

"Daniel Bassali of the Washington Free Beacon:

Richard Engel: Military Officials Say Allies No Longer Trust Us, Fear Intel Might Leak to Iran

NBC’s Richard Engel reported Friday that U.S. officials were stunned they were not given any notice before Saudi Arabia launched attacks against Houthi rebels. According to Engel, military leaders were finding out about the developments on the Yemen border in real time.

Engel said officials from both the military and members of Congress believe they were not given advanced warning because the Arab nations do not trust the Obama administration after they befriended Iran.

“Saudi Arabia and other countries simply don’t trust the United States any more, don’t trust this administration, think the administration is working to befriend Iran to try to make a deal in Switzerland, and therefore didn’t feel the intelligence frankly would be secure. And I think that’s a situation that is quite troubling for U.S. foreign policy,” Engel said.
. . .

Why the chaos in Yemen could force Obama to take a harder line with Iran

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

. . . "As chaos and sectarian bloodshed have spread, the White House is facing heavy pressure from its traditional Sunni Arab allies, Congress and some in the U.S. military to confront Iran more forcefully over its support for militant groups.

"Such a pivot carries big risks for the White House, which doesn’t want to be drawn into a worsening conflict between Sunnis and Shiites that its policies didn’t start and that it cannot stop. “We’ve always had concerns about Iran’s destabilizing behavior and abetting some of the worst actors in the region,” said a senior administration official who was authorized to speak on the issue, but not be quoted by name. “We also have a realization of the precise limitations of how much we can impact that behavior.”

"In recent days Saudi planes and Egyptian warships have launched attacks against Iranian-backed, Shiite rebels in Yemen. The United States has supported the Saudi attacks with intelligence and logistical help." . . .

 If so, then good for the President, sincerely.


Lena Dunham’s “Quiz” is Same Jew-Hatred My Relatives Faced in Nazi Europe; Roseanne Barr Supports Anti-Semitism

 Debbie Schlussel   "Actress/director Lena Dunham’s anti-Semitic “Dog or Jewish Boyfriend?” “quiz” in the New Yorker, is eerily similar to the Jew-hatred faced by my relatives both in Nazi Europe and right here in Michigan, where I live. That’s not to mention the Jew-hatred today in the Islamic world. And I find it notable that Roseanne Barr, whom so many people insisted to me has changed from her self-hating slant against Israel and Jews, applauded Lena Dunham’s Nazi-esque Jew-hatred."

Actress Lena Dunham is no stranger to controversy, and she's in hot water again. This time it's because she compares her Jewish boyfriend to a dog in the latest issue of the New Yorker.
"The playful, satirical quiz, presents 35 statements and asks the reader to decide if they refer to a dog or to her Jewish boyfriend. Dunham, the creator of HBO's hit show Girls, has said she is half-Jewish herself. She dates musician Jack Antonoff." . . .

Why this strikes a nerve with Israelis " Israeli tourists who visited Petra, Jordan, were taken aback to see a number of stores have posted signs “Sorry, we do not receive dogs and Israelis”. Apparently the posting of the signs followed Operation Cast Lead.

"Members of the tour group reported they were treated with hostility, with the locals making their ill feelings well-known to them."

Ever wonder about Mesquite? The tree and the town?

The Ubiquitous Mesquite 
“I could ask for no better monument over my grave than a good mesquite tree, its roots down deep like those of people who belong to the soil, its hardy branches, leaves and fruit holding memories of the soil. . . .”
— J. Frank Dobie, Texas writer
[Mesquite is] “the devil with roots. It scabs my cows, spooks my horses, and gives little shade.”
— W.T. Waggoner, pioneer northwest Texas rancher
 "Opinions of 21st-century Texans on the subject of mesquite are as divided as the two 20th-century views quoted above:"

• Ranchers consider it a noxious weed, whose thorns injure cattle, horses and cowhands. Worst of all, its extensive root system uses more than its fair share of water, which otherwise could grow cattle-nourishing grasses.
• Botanists know mesquite (genus Prosopis), a member of the legume family, as a nitrogen-fixing plant. Rather than depleting the soil of nitrogen, as do most plants, mesquites enrich soil by returning nitrogen to it.
• Most gardeners wouldn’t consider using the misshapen mesquite in their landscapes.
• Cooks value mesquite chips and charcoal for the luscious flavor they impart to grilled meats and fish.
• Some artisans and furniture makers prize mesquite for its deep colors, rich patina and interesting irregularities.
You may want to print this next thing out:
Medicines  "Aztecs made a lotion to soothe sore eyes from ground mesquite leaves mixed with water. Yuma Indians treated venereal disease with an infusion of leaves, and Comanches relieved toothaches by chewing the leaves. Yaquis treated headaches with a poultice made from mashing leaves to a pulp, mixing them with water and binding the mixture to the forehead.
"Gum, or sap, that oozed from mesquite bark was mixed with water to treat sore throats and diarrhea, aid digestion, and help wounds heal. The Yavapai rubbed a mixture of mud and mesquite gum into their hair to simultaneously kill lice and dye their hair."

The city:
Texas State Historical Association   [Mesquite was]"established by the Texas and Pacific Railway in May 1873 and named after nearby Mesquite Creek." 

Texas Confederate Army units
We are currently researching what units of the Confederate Army came from the Masquite - Dallas area. We will update this post as we can. TD
A civil rights source