Stupid Or Crazy

Normally, someone who oversees the engineering of a program that leads directly to the murders of hundreds of people and then acts as if questions about the program are somehow unfair or even racist is either an absolute idiot or an outright sociopath. But, as Americans have learned over the past four years, “normally” and “President Barack Obama” seldom collide in the same sentence.

Thus, not only can Obama preside over a government that created Operation Fast and Furious (OFF) and its body count, but he can blatantly stonewall investigators about the multimillion-dollar disaster that intentionally armed Mexican narcoterrorists. Moreover, not only can he blatantly stonewall investigators looking into OFF, but he can direct Attorney General Eric Holder to lie so unconvincingly that even a rat’s nest like the Congress will rule him in criminal and civil contempt. Moreover, not only can he direct his minions to perjure themselves in front of Congress, but he can travel to the country in which OFF left a trail of corpses and tell the grief-stricken survivors that the whole nightmare is someone else’s fault.

I have my doubts about Obama’s intellect. Considering his oddly ill-documented academic career and his serious lack of Constitutional comprehension (especially for a supposed con-law professor), it’s hardly unfair to wonder if his purported intellectual acumen is as manufactured as his other “Presidential” qualifications. However, I’ll be fair and acknowledge that Obama might not be stupid. He might be insane. What else would explain the speech he delivered to the National Anthropology Museum in Mexico City on Thursday?

According to the man who Presided over OFF, Benghazi, Obamacare and an attempted assassination of the 2nd Amendment, so-called “gun violence” in Mexico doesn’t stem from the finest firepower the U.S. Department of Justice can funnel south. Instead, the tumult that confronts our southern neighbors stems from… Actually, he’s saying precisely that, although I don’t think he realizes it.

We also recognize that most of the guns used to commit violence here in Mexico come from the United States… I will continue to do everything in my power to… keep guns out of the hands of criminals and dangerous people… So we’ll keep increasing the pressure on gun traffickers who bring illegal guns into Mexico. We’ll keep putting these criminals where they belong — behind bars.

His own Administration illegally exports guns to murderous narcoterrorists (over the objections of everyone involved with an IQ higher than earthworms), and he then blames a cabal of shadowy “gun traffickers” who sound an awful lot like the senior suits at the Justice Department.  Holder is the Attorney General, not an inmate at Leavenworth.

In a perverse sense, one almost has to admire Obama’s unmitigated gall. In blaming OFF’s Mexican casualties on American guns and gunrunners while refusing to acknowledge that his own minions are the gunrunners, he’s displaying magnificent arrogance, supreme cruelty, shocking stupidity or, more likely, some combination of the three. I wouldn’t be any less stunned if Al Gore delivered a speech on so-called “global warming” from a private jet paid for with Qatari oil money — not that anything that silly could ever transpire.

Nevertheless, I could be wrong. Obama may actually believe his own bull. Just as he may believe Obamacare wouldn’t hike premiums, amnesty for illegal aliens is a “civil right,” Benghazi was caused by a YouTube video and guns cause crime. We’ve finally found the answer to the question: “What’s worse: stupid or crazy?” And that answer is: “Both.”

–Ben Crystal

A Long Time Ago

Benghazi was just a crappy town in a crappy country, “global warming” was called “global cooling,”  and Kermit Gosnell was just another abortionist. Also: Debbie Wasserman-Schultz occasionally washed her hair. Now: Presented in 1080 hi-def, FOR FREE! It’s The Great Eight, from the Personal Liberty Digest™!
 
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=83HK6SBbjBA&w=560&h=315]

What The President Knows

A good friend of mine insists that President Richard Nixon was the finest President of the 20th century, and one of the finest of all time. This friend of mine is an intelligent man, and he makes a fairly strong case for Nixon. His assessment is based largely on his belief that Nixon’s diplomatic achievements saved the planet from nuclear annihilation. Between singing the Georgia Tech fight song as a disliked Vice President and pushing open the door between Communist China and the free world, Nixon kept everyone at the table long enough to keep everyone off the trigger.

I like to needle my friend with snappy retorts like:

He did an awesome job with Southeast Asia. “Mess with us, and we’ll secretly bomb the country next to you on the map.” And the home front was such a delight. The ’70s: That was fun. Thanks to “Tricky Dick,” America actually elected Jimmy Carter President. By 1979, the whole country was a suburb of Detroit.

His response to me normally entails the kind of language that he reserves for Georgia-Florida games in which the Bulldogs come up short.  (You’d think he’d be used to that by now.)

To be fair, I actually think that had Nixon been Secretary of State and Henry Kissinger been our U.N. Ambassador, the ’70s might have been a lot less costly for everyone. But Nixon’s greatest gift isn’t diplomatic; it’s the legacy he left behind. Nixon challenged the very core of the Constitution, and the Constitution held. Also, there’s loads of really cheap stuff on eBay thanks to “Ping-Pong diplomacy.”

Nixon is hardly lonely on the list of Presidents who lied. Lying wasn’t Nixon’s downfall; hubris was. Nixon forgot that the White House isn’t a palace, and Presidents are not kings. But he was neither the first nor the last to make that error. Witness the progress of the current Lord of the Oval Office.

President Barack Obama has yet to order a “third-rate burglary.” But his belief in his infallibility has turned him into a third-rate President. A couple of weeks ago, terrorists bombed the Boston Marathon. Even the corporate media is now acknowledging the fact that the Russians virtually flipped their furry hats to get someone in the Obama Administration to pay attention to the Tsarnaev boys. Either their warnings were ignored by low-level flacks, or their warnings were ignored by top-level flacks. As a result, the bombers accomplished their goal — not to mention a pretty lush, welfare-funded lifestyle — as a direct result of either Obama’s gross incompetence or deliberate malfeasance. As that fact sank in, the Democrats prayed the perpetrator was a “white American,” and then they made the aftermath a hypothetical conversation about the fact that it could have been. Obama’s failings disappeared in the haze of partisan liberal hate.

That same haze obscures Benghazi, Libya, about which Obama and his minions simply refuse to be forthcoming and may well have threatened witnesses and whistle-blowers; Operation Fast and Furious, for which the Attorney General simply laughed off criminal and civil contempt of Congress; the myriad violations of the Constitution contained in Obamacare (sorry, pro-lifers, the abortion is coming out of your pocket); and bold-faced attempts to assassinate the 2nd Amendment as a result of tragedies that anti-gun laws couldn’t and didn’t prevent.

Grading Presidents is obviously subjective. Out of a belief that steering the ship of state through extremely hazardous waters constitutes Chief Executive excellence, my friend considers Nixon’s accomplishments worthy of greatness. Out of irrational fear of things they don’t understand, naked lust for power or just plain laziness, today’s Democrats think Obama’s arrogant abuses of executive authority are acceptable, because those abuses make life easier for them.

We’ve had some great Presidents in the history of this great Nation. Even the greatest among them was flawed in some way. But they achieved greatness by remembering their true duty was to honor the people and the Constitution that make this Nation great. And just as Nixon’s personal demons clouded his political judgment, Obama’s ego has clearly clouded his.

–Ben Crystal

The Dogs Of Liberalism

I’ve never really understood the idea of changing a sports mascot to spare the delicate feelings of some self-victimized group of people. What the professional victim types who shriek about supposed insensitivity in sports mascots are missing is the fact that no one selects someone or something they don’t like and respect as a mascot. That’s why they’re the Washington Redskins instead of the Washington Personal Injury Lawyers. It’s the same reason they’re the Cleveland Indians instead of the Cleveland Democrats. Moreover, it’s sports — not something really important, like Obamacare.

As stupid as these sports-mascot debates have been over the past 25 or so years, they may have reached a new level of brainlessness last week. Meet Carolyn Luby, a woman who describes herself as a “feminist” and currently haunts the halls of the University of Connecticut as a senior. And she is outraged — outraged, I say! — at the makeover UConn recently gave its mascot and logo: the vaunted Husky. In a recent open letter to UConn President Susan Herbst, Luby complained that the new Husky is visual code for rape. While you consider that lunacy, imagine how proud her parents must feel to learn exactly what the $38,616 they spend annually for their little darling to major in something called “Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies” is going toward.

Regarding the new Husky, which no longer looks like a family pet begging for a Milk-Bone and more like an actual sled dog, Luby wrote: “(W)hat terrifies me about the admiration of such traits is that I know what it feels like to have a real life Husky look straight through you and to feel powerless, and to wonder if even the administration cannot ‘mess with them.’”

My neighbor has a husky named Nadia. She’s a friendly enough dog, if somewhat aloof. To the best of my knowledge, she has never raped anyone, although she has dispatched a few neighborhood squirrels.  Far be it for me to suggest, but if Luby has had troubling experiences with sled dogs in the past, perhaps a school named for one might not have been the best choice for her.

To be sure, Luby’s concerns about rapist puppies are idiotic, albeit neither more nor less so than most of the complaints broached by “women’s gender and sexuality studies” majors. Indeed, the entire subject of her self-victimizing rant steps past silly on the path to embarrassing. But the underlying environment that produced her anti-dogism is hardly limited to the Department of Self-Proclaimed Victim Studies at the local university.

A little less than 150 miles south of Storrs, Conn., (home of your Huskies!) lies the campus of Columbia University. One of the Ivy League schools, Columbia bears a long and distinguished history as one of America’s top institutes of higher learning. Columbia counts among its alums not only President Barack Obama, but our own Wayne Allyn Root. And among its professors, it features a fellow named Marc Lamont Hill. The associate professor recently boosted Columbia’s already considerable reputation by extolling the virtues of unrepentant cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal. Hill is the same celebrity-academic who said to a CNN panel that Obama supporter, murderer and failed fugitive from justice Chris Dorner was “like a real life superhero” and “exciting.”

Down Interstate 95 from the ivy-draped walls of Columbia sits the cozy campus of the University of Pennsylvania. Like Columbia, Penn is an Ivy League school. And like Columbia, Penn features a professor who has mistaken twisted liberal ideology for knowledge. Associate professor of Religious Studies Anthea Butler took time away from her ostensible job as a teacher to tweet: “How soon is Sam Bacile going to be in jail folks? I need him to go now.” Bacile is the amateurish auteur behind “The Innocence of Muslims,” the little-watched video on which Obama originally attempted to blame the Benghazi, Libya, massacre about which he and his accomplices have yet to stop lying. Butler is ostensibly a professor of religious studies. Exactly which religion calls for the incarceration of bad filmmakers falsely accused by a statist President and a bunch of ululating jihadis of “mocking the prophet Muhammad?”  Never mind.

And those are just two of the many who serve as living proof of the adage “those who can’t, teach.” Ward Churchill, most of the faculty at Berkeley and even terrorist and Obama crony Bill Ayers have all contributed to the denigration of higher education. According to a study conducted by another school (the University of California at Los Angeles), the intellectual shepherds to whom we entrust our children self-identify as liberal more than 60 percent of the time on average, with fewer than 15 percent of their colleagues claiming a more rational outlook.

And the highest levels of academe represent only one of the infestations of liberalism in education. Before the professorial perpetrators get their grubby paws on our children’s minds, a host of liberals spend years mauling our babies’ brains. Government schools are overrun with union thugs masquerading — albeit poorly — as educators. Tales of secondary and even elementary school teachers flying their freak flags at full mast could fill a semester’s worth of reading. My personal favorite: Confronted with a student who asked a question about Obama’s past, Tanya Dixon-Neely of Rowan, N.C., shrieked:

He is a wonderful president! … As a teacher I’m not supposed to allow people to disrespect the president of the United States. … As a social studies teacher I cannot allow you to slander any president in here, past or current.

Social. Studies. Teacher. And people wonder why our kids are jockeying with the kids in the Balkans for a spot in the top 20 in world education rankings.

Not long ago, I enjoyed an exchange with Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, the second largest teachers’ union in the country. On the anniversary of the death of Trayvon Martin, she tweeted: “One year ago today Trayvon Martin was killed. His killer walked free for too long empowered by ALEC and the NRA.” When I pointed out that George Zimmerman has yet to be tried, much less convicted of anything, she claimed to be “mourning the death of Trayvon Martin.” I’m not sure how figuratively lynching Martin’s would-be victim constitutes “mourning,” but it’s been a minute since my last social studies class.

Luby and her phobia about dogs might be silly, but her tale is symptomatic of a greater issue. As the forces of liberalism darken the door of the citadel of liberty that is America, the next generation of free people is trapped in indoctrination factories wherein ideologues have replaced professors and ideology has replaced knowledge. We spend a great deal of time here at Personal Liberty Digest reporting from the front lines of the defense of freedom. But far behind the lines, the liberals are already building the next generation of soldiers; and they’re using the schools as the barracks.

–Ben Crystal

The Politics Of Everything

Thursday was a tough day for the people of West, Texas. They gathered to bid a final farewell to their friends and family, 15 of whom died in the catastrophic explosion and fire at the West Fertilizer Co. storage and distribution center.

As a resident of Savannah, Ga., I have a sense of just how far a tragedy at a major local employer can reach. In February 2008, an explosion at the Imperial Sugar Refinery in nearby Port Wentworth reverberated far beyond the harrowing damage at the scene. Nearly everyone in the area was connected by blood or friendship to an employee at the plant.

To the best of my recollection, the various Imperial Sugar memorials evoked tears at best and indifference at worst. If someone tried to exploit the nightmare to press some twisted liberal ideological button, I neither heard nor read about it. While the usual Democratic vultures found their familiar roosts soon enough, the memorials themselves were treated with at least respectful silence.

Pity the same can’t be said for the folks in West. As they grieved together, Sacramento Bee editorial cartoonist Jack Ohman published this macabre substitute for humor:

Get it? See, the pencil-necked artist thinks the tragedy was caused by a lack of government bureaucracy. So he depicted Texas Governor Rick Perry — who has been enthusiastically recruiting businesses away from job-crushing, union thug-infested States governed by Democrats — as luring people to their doom in a fiery explosion. And, hey, there was a fiery explosion in West! Yeah, that’s some funny stuff, right there.

Perry tweeted the following response to the Bee’s ghoulish glee: “Disgusted by the @sacbee_news cartoon mocking death of fellow Americans in explosion. They owe the citizens of West an apology.” He didn’t say that the Bee should dump Ohman for shamelessly stomping on the graves of the West victims; he didn’t even point out the obvious fact that Ohman is a no-talent hack who is almost as funny as bone cancer. He simply noted that politicizing tragedy is inappropriate at best and cruel at worst.

Of course, The Bee chose to attack Perry rather than admit to atrocious comic timing. Bee Editorial Page Editor Stuart Leavenworth even took the inexplicably ugly step of blaming Perry: “Yes, a Texas governor is beating up on a cartoonist instead of taking some responsibility. shocking.” Leavenworth’s decision to double down against decency begs the question: Why be ghoulish and creepy when you can be ghoulish and creepy and blame your ghoulish creepiness on someone else? If Democrats want to ascribe every tragedy they encounter to some lack of adherence to their ideas, I suppose they’re welcome to it. Despite their own opposition to the 1st Amendment, they have the right to free speech — even unfunny, unpleasant and/or uncaring speech.

They have the right to spurious attempts to tie the Newtown, Conn., massacre to a lack of anti-Bill of Rights laws that wouldn’t have had any effect on the Newtown massacre. They have the right to bewildering efforts to tie the Boston Marathon bombing to “white Americans.” They have the right to pretend they’re not repudiated by actual facts at every turn. And, sadly, they have the right to pretend jokes about their fellow citizens dying in blazing infernos are funny.

Liberals politicize everything because to a liberal, everything is political. The air you breathe is political; ask the zealots at the Environmental Protection Agency. The food you eat is political; ask New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the first lady. To a liberal, even life itself is political. And judging by the President’s make-out session at Planned Parenthood last week, they’re solidly against it — unless the life in question belongs to a cop killer or an islamofascist. Ultimately, if you’re mourning the loss of family or friends and the Democrats can make political hay out of your grief, it’s not personal; it’s politics.

–Ben Crystal

Dangerous, Illegal And Common

If Stephen King, Dean Koontz and William Peter Blatty were locked in a room with a laptop, the collected works of Edgar Allen Poe and a truckload of Bogota, Colombia’s finest nose candy, I’m not sure they could come up with something quite as horrifying as a regular business day at the abortion clinic and house of horrors run by accused murderer Kermit Gosnell. And if three titans of terror did manage to produce a tale as twisted as any Tuesday at the Women’s Medical Society of Philadelphia, I doubt I would let them out afterward.

Yet I’m left wondering how this real-life slasher film could even have unfolded. After all, the Democrats and their anti-life allies have been insisting for decades that rendering abortion “safe, legal and rare” would eliminate just this sort of thing. No more untrained and possibly deranged pseudo-doctors committing unspeakable acts in back alleys. No more of those crude coat-hanger abortions they claimed ran rampant before Roe took out Wade.

How then to explain the litany of abuses that trail “Dr.” Gosnell throughout his decades-long career in the sub-basement of modern medicine’s worst tenement? In an age during which not only do the anti-lifers mingle with lawmakers but they often are the lawmakers, how could Gosnell’s crimes have been committed, much less gone unreported? According to the grand jury report, Gosnell:

[R]egularly and illegally delivered live, viable, babies in the third trimester of pregnancy — and then murdered these newborns by severing their spinal cords with scissors… he overdosed his patients with dangerous drugs, spread venereal disease among them with infected instruments, perforated their wombs and bowels — and, on at least two occasions, caused their deaths.

According to witness testimony, one baby who survived an abortion “was like swimming” in the toilet. “Basically, trying to get out.” The same witness later recounted Gosnell joking about one victim being “big enough that it (sic) could walk to the store or the bus stop.” Hey, if you’re going to run an abortion mill with the hygiene of a Third World abattoir, at least you should have a sense of humor about it, right? At least Gosnell wasn’t doing anything incredibly creepy, like keeping trophies of his victims in jars or participating in an abortion experiment that would give Josef Mengele the heebie-jeebies.

Could not one of the millions of dollars in taxpayer funding handed over to abortion-cover group Planned Parenthood be spared to ensure Gosnell’s freak show was reported? It certainly had enough cash on hand after the Gloria Steinem-headlined fundraiser it held scant miles away from Gosnell’s clinic. According to Planned Parenthood, its Southeastern Pennsylvania’s 17th Annual Spring Gathering with Keynote Speaker Gloria Steinem sold out the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia.

Could Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius not have taken a day away from lying about the cost increases in Obamacare to send an inspector by to at least check the plumbing? From the grand jury report:

James Johnson, who supposedly cleaned the clinic and bagged its infectious waste, confirmed [clinic employee Latosha] Lewis’s account. He testified that sometimes patients “miscarried or whatever it was” into the toilet and clogged it.

No other species on the planet kills its own young as a matter of simple convenience. No dolphin mommies drown their little Flippers to go clubbing with the barracuda and his posse. No queen ant chows down on her own little antlets because she has no time to feed them. Even when the major predators go after their own kind, the mothers will die to protect their cubs, not douse them in steak sauce and serve them with garnish. Yet some humans — the masterwork produced by more than 4 billion years of animals fighting desperately to survive — will not only kill their children rather than deal with the hassle of raising them; they’ll let Gosnell handle the wet work.

Instead of “safe, legal and rare,” the abortionists have created a death culture that includes Gosnell’s Philadelphia freak show, the Women’s Health Center of Philadelphia: definitely unsafe, probably illegal and depressingly common.

–Ben Crystal

Lessons From Boston

If the definition of insanity is indeed repeatedly doing the same thing while constantly expecting different results, then the islamofascist bombing of the Boston Marathon and the aftermath thereof offers lessons aplenty on the cycle of insanity in which our Nation now finds itself. Some of those lessons are more obvious; like the clear and present danger which islamofascism represents to innocent people everywhere. Some are less so; like the clear and present danger which political correctness has allowed islamofascism to deliver to our own shores.

Our counterterrorism and immigration enforcement structure is a wreck.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Tamerlane Tsarnaev might as well have been on the front cover of “People of Interest Daily.” According to multiple reports, they both displayed serious symptoms of islamofascism. As if his publicly psychotic pronouncements weren’t noteworthy enough, the Russians actually flagged Tamerlane on our behalf back in 2011. Now, our relationship with Russia isn’t quite as rosy as it was back when Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin were doing vodka shots in plus-size strip clubs. And yet, the FSB, which doubtless still remembers the Beslan massacre ALSO perpetrated by Chechen islamofascists, thought Tamerlane was trouble enough to rate a phone call to the Justice Department. Evidently, the Russkies’ warnings were ignored; perhaps because Attorney General Eric Holder was busy “confronting” the Mexican narcoterrorist threat. In the wake of the Russian phone call revelation, Holder had no comment. I suppose that’s an improvement from the perjury he usually resorts to.

The Corporate media couldn’t successfully report a car theft in progress in their own parking decks.

At this point, these guys are almost as credible — not to mention relevant — as the “Soap Opera Digest.” CNN, Fox News, the Boston Globe and the Associated Press all committed major factual errors in the hours and days following the bombing. At one point, MSNBC’s Lester Holt, whose own network has abandoned news coverage altogether in favor of leftist partisan rancor (more on that in a moment), admitted: “I can tell you more about what we don’t know than what we know.” It was almost as if Dan Rather had secretly taken over the entire media establishment. I half expected them to report: “The suspect is an older, well-dressed white male with a mustache. He may be carrying a wrench or a pipe. We believe he answers to the name ‘Colonel Mustard.’”

President Barack Hussein Obama lives in a world vastly different from ours.

Following his Rose Garden tantrum on Thursday, Obama flew to Boston; presumably to offer comfort to the grieving citizens of the wounded city. Instead, he talked up his favorite topic: Barack Obama. By the end of the week, Barry urged us all to avoid rushing to judgment. Of course we should. We wouldn’t want a repeat of that unfortunate George Zimmerman lynch mob business.

Liberals Absolutely HATE the rest of us.

Chris Matthews on MSNBC got it all wrong: “Normally, domestic terrorists, people tend to be on the far right, well that’s not a good category…” The New York Times’ Nick Kristof tweeted this random criticism: “explosion is a reminder that ATF needs a director. Shame on Senate Republicans for blocking apptment.” And David Sirota of leftist blogsite Salon.com took the blue ribbon with: “Let’s hope the Boston Marathon bomber is a white American.” So sorry to disappoint you, Dave. While the Democrats and their sock-puppets hoped the bombers were white Americans, I hoped they would be caught and punished; and that further attacks never happen.

Some liberals even managed to blame the 2nd amendment; as if their humiliating defeat in the Senate wasn’t enough. Sorry, kids. My AR-15 and the assorted standard-capacity magazines in my gun safe were nowhere near Boston last week. I would have noticed.

The smoke had yet to clear from Boylston Street, and the Democrats — ostensibly our American brothers and sisters — were desperately praying not for an end to terrorist attacks on our shores, not for swift justice for our attackers, not even for God’s gentle mercies for the victims and their families. Nope; their dearest wish was that YOU did it.

Now THAT is the definition of insanity.

–Ben Crystal

 

Only The Democrats

Liberals are actually disappointed the Boston bomber’s not a “White American.” It’s Obama’s favorite subject. And: oh, no! Poor Joe! All this, plus: MEGAQUILLIONS! Presented in 1080 hi-def, FOR FREE! It’s The Great Eight, from the Personal Liberty Digest™!
 
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After Boston, Life Goes On

It’s always difficult to pen a column in the wake of a nightmare like the Boston Marathon attack earlier this week. On the one hand, it would be relatively easy to write about the righteous fury I’d dearly love to drop like a wrecking ball on the skulls of the perpetrators. That would give me an opportunity to explore the further reaches of my inner avenger. I could rhetorically bellow at the top of my lungs, using lots of similes involving words my mother taught me to avoid and seriously improper use of construction equipment. But any shrieking I might do would be wasted. The victims have bigger worries. The perpetrators either don’t care or enjoy the effect. And life would go on.

I could scratch out some maudlin lament bemoaning the tragedy of innocent lives cut short or damaged forever. I could wail about the damnable unfairness of a world in which such monsters are allowed to prowl. But any crying I might do would be wasted. The victims know how much pain they’re in. The perpetrators think it’s marvelous. And life would go on.

I could point fingers at suspects. I could pick out ideological differences and make wild, cruel, defamatory and even stupid guesses about the identity of those behind the abominable deed. But only a fool would allow his own partisanship to blind him to the real suffering of real people. And only a complete boor would take advantage of such misery to press an unrelated agenda or bloviate about his own bigotries. That’s almost as bad as celebrating a crisis as a chance for self-aggrandizement rather than being respectfully somber. And life would still go on.

Instead, I’ll focus on the heroics of the people at the scene. I’ll cheer those who selflessly rushed toward the catastrophe. I’ll express my wishes that the perpetrators are identified, apprehended and punished in short order. I’ll offer my prayers for those who grieve and for those who suffer. And life will go on.

And I’ll say to those who commit such dastardly acts — and to their fans and enablers — only this: Laugh it up, scumbags. Whether on this plane or the next, you’ll get yours. And it will make ball bearings, nails and forced amputations look like 71 virgins. And despite your best efforts, life will go on.

–Ben Crystal

Guns And Loafers

Ninety percent of Americans want President Barack Obama and Congress to mandate background checks on any and all Americans who purchase firearms. And if that overwhelming tide of public sentiment isn’t enough to sway your opinion on restricting the Bill of Rights, consider this: 40 percent of all gun sales are conducted without any sort of law enforcement or governmental oversight. Still can’t see the error of “clinging to your… guns?” Here’s another logic bullet upside your dome: 100,000 Americans are killed by guns every year. Are you still fingering the trigger on your “death machine?” Dig this: Each year, more American children are killed by guns than are killed by cancer. If you’re still holding out, you must be a “domestic terrorist.”

I have personally heard and/or read every one of the above statements presented as irrefutable facts by the “low-information” set (loafers) in the just the past week. Of course, not one of them is true; but damn it, you gun zealots, we’re talking about children’s lives! Besides, liberals have no compunction about fudging the facts when it comes to politics. To put the liberal disdain for honesty before ideology in terms even loafers can understand: “by any means necessary” or “the science is settled.”

Ninety percent of Americans clearly don’t support further infringements on the Bill of Rights. Ninety percent of Americans comprise somewhere in the neighborhood of 290 million people. That many Americans couldn’t agree on free beer. Come to think of it, 290 million Americans couldn’t agree on the Presidency, and that’s despite the loafers’ deification of President Barack Hussein Obama. Even CBS News acknowledges:

Currently, support for stricter gun control laws stands at 47 percent today, down from a high of 57 percent… Thirty-nine percent want those laws kept as they are, and another 11 percent want them made less strict.

In recent days, anti-Bill of Rights crusaders from Obama and New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg on down to the lowest-level loafer have claimed 40 percent of gun sales are conducted without background checks, the so-called “gun show loophole.” The 40 percent number was bogus to begin with (it was based on a poorly sourced 1997 study using questionable data from 1994), and it has disintegrated under scrutiny to such a degree that even The Washington Post noted:

Interestingly, while people often speak of the “gun show loophole,” the data in this…survey shows that only 3.9 percent of firearm purchases were made at gun shows.

Mark Twain (who claimed to be quoting British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli) said: “There are… lies, damned lies and statistics.” The 40 percent claim is only two out of three.

Much like the grammatically twisted phrase “gun violence,” the loafers’ insistence on assigning malicious intent to firearms is not only intellectually dishonest, it’s just plain silly. As I’ve pointed out before: Without an operator, a gun is merely an overengineered paperweight. Since the first 13th century Chinese partisans faced off over a bowl of rice, no firearm has killed anyone ever. Anthropomorphizing guns might make it easier for MSNBC to write spooky ledes, but it won’t make those ledes legitimate. Blaming Newtown on guns is like blaming Chappaquiddick on the Oldsmobile.

Likewise, remarks suggesting guns have killed more children than cancer belong in the rhetorical dustbin. The same loafers who loathe the Bill of Rights the way Vice President Joe “Shotgun” Biden loathes dignified public appearances ought to consider redirecting their rage to something that actually kills more kids than cancer; like abortion. There’s a spectacularly macabre example of my point unfolding in Philadelphia. Plenty of prime seating remains available in the media section.

And the loafers certainly don’t help their cause by equating Bill of Rights defenders with terrorists, domestic or otherwise. Not only does that sort of defamatory fearmongering diminish the pain inflicted by actual terrorists, it makes the fearmongers seem sillier than Biden at a spelling bee. Bill Ayers is a terrorist. Wayne LaPierre is not.

The loafers insist a serious discussion on so-called “gun control” is long overdue. But half-truths and outright lies do not make for a particularly worthwhile discussion. I’m perfectly willing to engage in discussion. They should let me know when they’re ready to get serious.

–Ben Crystal

The Same Old Story

I took the liberty of rendering the dialogue fairly generic. After all, I wouldn’t want our anti-Bill of Rights readers to miss the point.

The Day After:
Criminals and the Washington Gun-Grab.

FADE IN

EXT. SECLUDED ALLEYWAY IN A LARGE CITY.
A young man (GANGBANGER) wearing ill-fitting clothing sidles up to an equally shoddily dressed individual (BLACK-MARKETEER). The second man leans against an open-trunked 1988 Buick LeSabre with after-market rims the size of manhole covers.

         GANGBANGER
Pardon me; but are you the fellow who operates a black-market gun shop out of his car?

         BLACK-MARKETEER
Indeed, I am. Given your attire and demeanor, I presume you wish to purchase a gun but are precluded from doing so either because you are legally prohibited from possessing firearms, are conducting an illegal straw purchase or simply do not wish to have your possession of a firearm noted by law enforcement. Of course, as a black-marketeer, I eschew any sort of legal restrictions in favor of facilitating criminal weapons purchases.

         GANGBANGER
As a criminal who routinely and deliberately breaks any laws I wish, I appreciate your services. Might you have any fully automatic weapons?

         BLACK-MARKETEER
I can accommodate your request. And you are clearly aware such a purchase constitutes a further violation of the law, since possession of fully automatic firearms without proper Federal approval has been illegal for many years. However, since we are both criminals, violating pre-existing weapons laws is entirely inconsequential to us.

         GANGBANGER
In fact, President Barack Obama and his accomplices’ attempts to further restrict the Bill of Rights benefit us both. By passing so-called “gun control” laws, they have not only rendered my potential victims even more vulnerable, they have also increased your sales. The war on the Bill of Rights very closely mirrors the disastrous Prohibition efforts of the early 20th century.

         BLACK-MARKETEER
It has been a pleasure doing illegal business with you, fellow criminal. I look forward to further interactions with you and the rest of the violent criminal element as we all continue to flout the laws that burden our law-abiding brethren in the name of state control over the people.

         GANGBANGER
Look what their ideological idols did to Russia: a murderous, behemoth government working hand in glove with a homicidal, monstrous criminal underworld. And the law-abiding citizens –helpless against those twin terrors –died by the tens of millions to benefit them both.

         BLACK-MARKETEER
“When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.” It might be clichéd, but it is indubitably a fact. By the way, I need you to sign this Federal form for your background check before I sell you any firearms; it’s the law.

         GANGBANGER
I beg your pardon?

         BLACK-MARKETEER
Just kidding.

FADE OUT

–Ben Crystal

What’s In A Name?

To the best of my recollection, sometime in the 1990s, the corporate media welded “gun” to “violence,” creating a rhetorical Frankenstein’s monster. With the exception of former Attorney General Janet Reno’s occasional combat operations against her fellow citizens, anytime a firearm featured into a crime, “gun violence” was blamed. People actually began falling victim to “gun violence” or “gun crime” or even “assault weapons.” Somehow, the Democrats managed to eliminate the perpetrators of crime, conjuring up images of walking, talking inanimate objects that loaded themselves and then hit the streets like the marching hammers in “Pink Floyd The Wall.”

And the American left sat up, brushed the crumbs off their bellies and began howling for someone to save them from the evil hordes of guns that had ruined their reverie. Not one ever noted the most important trait of phrases such as “gun violence,” “gun crime” and “assault weapons”: They’re idiotic deformations of the language.

To be sure, violence, crime and assault are certainly not idiotic. Anyone who has served in combat, worked in law enforcement, been victimized by a criminal or even observed unsupervised union thugs interacting with senior citizens who oppose Obamacare knows that real violence is really not funny. Nor should it ever be taken lightly. Therefore, when liberals attach “gun” to “violence” in an overt effort to demonize the implement by which violence is visited upon a victim, they’re diminishing not only the actions of the offender, but the suffering of the victim.

I often hear my fellow conservatives respond to liberal, anti-Bill of Rights activists by asking, “What about ‘knife violence?'” or positing some similar rhetorical argument. I say that kind of response is mistaken on two fronts:

  1. By demanding further qualifications (i.e., “knife violence,” “car violence” or “bat violence”), conservatives are ceding ground liberals don’t actually occupy. Once you say “knife violence,” you’ve acknowledged “gun violence” is a legitimate classification. It isn’t. Violence is violence.
  2. By ceding said ground, conservatives are allowing liberals to define the issue as being about inanimate objects rather than people. It may be clichéd, but “guns don’t kill people; people kill people” is indubitably accurate. Indeed, it’s a far more accurate assessment of the nature of crime and violence than mealymouthed platitudes liberals might form to cast blame on the wrong culprit.

From the dawn of recorded history until this very moment, no gun has ever inflicted violence on anyone, harmed anyone or killed anyone. Even in the rare cases of accidental discharge, the gun was merely a means of conveyance, like a car is to transportation. People hurt each other and themselves. Since guns are just hunks of metal and polymer, they can’t form intent, much less cause harm. Left to their own devices, guns are overengineered doorstops, paperweights and/or art.

Recently, The Associated Press announced the elimination of “illegal immigrant” and “islamist” from its stylebook. Evidently, that once-respected organization worries about the feelings of, well, illegal immigrants and islamists. By my own reckoning, both phrases lack a certain lyrical accuracy; I prefer the more legally accurate “illegal alien” and “islamofascist.” But I can’t help but notice that while The AP – and, hence, the corporate media — tries to adjust the lexicon to reflect the delicate sensitivities of criminals, it possesses no such compunction about the legitimate concerns of law-abiding Americans.

Obama Cares!

Barry and Michelle tighten their (designer) belts. History repeats itself for poor Piers. And the First Athlete sucks at two sports. All this — plus — MORE COWBELL! Presented in 1080 hi-def, FOR FREE! It’s The Great Eight, from the Personal Liberty Digest™!
 
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZyPtnXOB7k&w=560&h=315]

Pro-Science

I highly doubt many of you are unaware of my stance on so-called “global warming” (aka “global cooling,” “climate change” or “ManBearPig”). I suspect most of you share my rather dim view of former Vice President Al “The Oilman Goeth” Gore and his “inconvenient slide show,” though I am aware that some of you still cling bitterly to the last vestige of his fading glory.

Of course, my refusal to bow to the low-information set and their invective-laden insistence that ManBearPig is as real as actual stuff does seem to elicit some red-faced tirades. Gore and company’s increasingly suspect belief that something bad is going to happen has become religion to liberals. And like any zealots, our Democrat friends get more than a mite testy when their dogma is challenged. Thus have I observed the newest epithet in the ever-growing liberal lexicon of hate: “anti-science.” For refusing to swallow the global warmists’ anecdotally based pseudo logic, I am apparently “anti-science.”

That sort of ad hominem pabulum might pass for discourse in the White House or the studio audience of a Bill Maher telecast, but it isn’t actual debate — just as ManBearPig isn’t actual science. Allow me to demonstrate.

About 17 billion years ago, it happened. Better minds than mine have wrestled with the nature of it, what preceded it, what caused it and what exactly it produced. What we all seem to agree upon is the fact that it wasn’t, and then it really was. What captivates me isn’t what it was. I expect many eons more will pass before anyone figures it out. What really inspires my inner science geek is what happened after it.

In the first few moments after it, there wasn’t much to look at. Within a millisecond or two, hydrogen atoms had formed; but stable hydrogen and helium atoms didn’t debut for nearly a half million years. The first star didn’t begin to shine for nearly 100 million years. The first galaxy didn’t coalesce until nearly a billion years had passed since it. Our own sun didn’t rise and shine until almost 10 billion years had passed. And the first human didn’t do his first Fred Flintstone until mere moments ago, from an astronomical perspective.

Everything in between it and now has been the product of a crescendo of creation and destruction. From atoms to galaxies and everything in between, now exists as it does only because everything that happened before it not only happened, but happened in a fairly precise order. A series of almost ludicrously unlikely events followed one another throughout all those years like dominoes on a cosmic table: seemingly random yet magnificently structured, unfolding on scales from the infinitesimally small to the infinitely huge. From the first buzzing subatomic particles to the galactic superclusters spanning the entire universe, it led unexpectedly, yet inexorably, to now. In the words of One far greater than I: “without form, and void” (Genesis 1:2).

From the aforementioned timeline of the universe, I can divine two inescapable truths:

  1. The idea that a collection of perfectly ordered coincidences of almost astronomical unlikelihood happened despite incalculably bad odds without assistance from an entity that exists beyond all of it defies logic.
  2. The idea that any of those perfectly ordered coincidences could be altered, stopped or started by a creature that has existed for less than 1/100,000th of all of history — and has never ventured farther from its home than a few hundred thousand miles — defies basic common sense.

On my side, I have a geological and astronomical record that dates back close to 20 billion years. I have the inescapable certitudes of math and physics. And I have what my old Western civilization professor, the incomparable Dr. Stegemann, referred to as “the accumulated wisdom of the tribe”: the sum total of tens of thousands of years of humanity’s progress toward answering the ultimate questions.

My detractors have a fluidly anecdotal theory based on 150 years of observations that trades fact for folly and has required no fewer than three name changes in four decades due to climatological cycles it has yet to predict correctly. If that’s “pro-science,” then color me “anti-science,” I suppose.

–Ben Crystal

Safe At The Gun Show

One of the larger of the touring gun shows came through town recently; and being the sort of fellow I am, I gladly paid the entry fee and spent a few hours browsing the wares. I’ve written about my affinity for gun shows before, and I’m often asked by my non-“gun guy” friends to explain my regular attendance. I find my “it’s a traveling carnival of awesome” description elicits more confusion than understanding. The best way I can explain it would be through the magic of simile.

Ben is to gun show as:

  • Gearhead is to auto show.
  • Woman is to one of those gigantic shoe stores in the outlet mall.
  • Union member is to ugly mob.

But those of you who find firearms and firearm ownership either uninteresting or appalling would be both mortified and surprised by the goings-on at a gun show. The rows upon rows of firearms and firearm-related accoutrement would mortify you, while the complete lack of hatred and shouted invective would surprise you. After all, the image that the liberals and their corporate media flacks have conjured suggests a deafening collection of goose-stepping whackjobs, backwoods hillbillies and lunatic doomsday prophets. Of course, like every caricature created by the Democrats in their endless war on the Bill of Rights, the aforementioned stereotypes are no more valid than the liberal assumption that black people are incapable of fending for themselves without government assistance.

To be sure, there are some oddities floating through the gun show atmosphere. There’s the guy wearing army-issue body armor that doesn’t even come close to covering his non-army-issue beer gut. There’s the dude hawking EOTech™ clones that are only slightly more believable than Attorney General Eric Holder’s Congressional testimony on Operation Fast and Furious. And more often than not there’s a guy selling fake World War II memorabilia who hopes you won’t notice the “made in China” sticker until after you get home.

But there isn’t a lot of yelling. There isn’t a great deal of voiced outrage. There are no mobs of indignant women’s studies majors waving placards and marching about in no particular direction. In an atmosphere in which the headlines are dominated by ludicrous attempts by liberals to demonize firearms as possessing an innately sinister nature unto themselves, no one was so much as mildly surprised by a gun. With everything from those trendy pink-handled .22s to a fully functional, semi-automatic replica of a Goryunov machine gun, the gun show represents a chamber of horrors to those shrieking Brady Campaigners; yet shoppers and vendors alike were as comfortable as Michael Moore at all-you-can-eat night at the local Krispy Kreme.

There were no shouts of blind hatred for those who don’t share the assemblage’s political ideologies, no demands for free stuff at the expense of someone else’s hard work, no cheers for the misfortune of others, no screams for the maiming, murdering or general demise of anyone. There were no beatings, no stabbings and — contrary to deliberate misconception — no shooting rampages.

There are thousands of firearms and tens of thousands of rounds of ammunition in room filled to the rafters with firearm enthusiasts. If the gun grabbers’ slander is to be believed, such a tableau should have naturally progressed to a rolling horde of wild-eyed barbarians and the kind of body count usually reserved for a Third World civil war. Yet even Piers Morgan would have been safer than the crown jewels. At least until he got a load of that Goryunov; that would have sent him running for the nearest “gun-free zone.”

–Ben Crystal

Skool Is Goodest

Nestled close by the beautiful beaches of Florida’s famed Boca Raton lies an institution of higher learning in which young minds are nurtured in an academic embrace as warm as the Gulf Stream breezes that flow gently through the campus. Inside the magnificent-yet-comfortable buildings, world-renowned for their architectural perfection, one of the finest collections of minds ever assembled imparts its encyclopedic wisdom to rising generations of future accomplishment.

With multiple Nobel laureates in nearly every department, the quality of instruction is augmented not only by the state-of-the-art learning facilities, but an average student-to-professor ratio of 10-to-1. This school’s every discipline is enhanced by the finest equipment available to mankind. The working fusion reactor will light up prospective physics majors, while language majors will surely be talking about the immersive foreign-language-only dormitories. For the historians: A library with original copies of each of the Founding Fathers’ memoirs will transport them into the past. For the ecologists: A fully self-sustaining bio-dome will feel like home.

This school’s athletic programs produce multiple national championships in multiple sports and challenges among the elite each season, while the 4 million-square-foot field house staffed with certified personal trainers and the latest technological advances and comforts makes fitness a reality for every student. In the dormitories, the school’s world-renowned design and engineering majors have created a living environment that not only is as comfortable as home, but also is optimized for the ultimate combination of ergonomics and academics. And when refueling is required for the rigors of study, the dining hall is Michelin-rated 4 stars and operates 24 hours a day.

What aspiring young mind wouldn’t dream of earning a degree from such a place? What parent wouldn’t dream the same for his child? Armed with a degree from such an esteemed
university, a young person could do nearly anything. The benefit to society of multiple graduates of the place would be almost incalculable.

Of course, no such college exists. However, one could matriculate to Florida Atlantic University, which offers courses such as “Intercultural Communications” under the watchful eye of Palm Beach Democratic Party Vice Chairman Deandre Poole. Until last week, the class included the following exercise (from the teachers’ manual that accompanies the textbook Intercultural Communication: A Contextual Approach, 5th Edition):

Have the students write the name JESUS in big letters on a piece of paper. Ask the students to stand up and put the paper on the floor in front of them with the name facing up. Ask the students to think about it for a moment. After a brief period of silence, instruct them to step on the paper.

Just think of the career paths open to a survivor of such a school. Seriously, think of them. Because all I can come up with involves either working for the government or not working at all. After all, the Democratic Party can’t pay everyone to make House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s lattes; and MSNBC isn’t hiring writers these days.

–Ben Crystal

Liberty 101: Exam Time

All right, everyone; take your pencils out and put away your books. Professor Ben is here to take stock of just how much you’ve managed to retain from the reams of knowledge proffered by the rest of the faculty here at the Personal Liberty Digest Institute for Higher Learning and General Awesomeness. I’ve tried to cover as wide a range of topics as possible, all the better to gauge your progress. You’ll find the questions tough, but fair. Of course, some of you will fail to earn a passing grade and will be furious with me for refusing to “level the playing field.” That’s a tough break, kiddies. This is our field; we don’t move the goal posts to make it easier for the junior varsity.

Try to remember: There are no stupid questions, but there are some really stupid answers and some really, really stupid people:

Q: The $6 trillion rise in the national debt is a direct result of:

  1. President Barack Obama’s wildly ill-advised attempts to nationalize huge swaths of America’s economy.
  2. The fuel bills for greedy conservative’s private jets.
  3. Dick Cheney’s evil plans.
  4. Michelle Obama’s shopping habits.

Q: The “sequester” was created by:

  1. President Barack Obama.
  2. Speaker of the House John Boehner.
  3. Dick Cheney.
  4. Evil rich people. (But not the really cool ones like Al Gore and Sean Penn.)

Q: Because of the “sequester”:

  1. White House tours have been canceled.
  2. Michelle and Barack Obama are taking the girls on a “staycation” to the East Wing this year.
  3. Vice President Joe Biden is staying only in motels that charge by the hour.
  4. Obama has cut back to using Pinnacle™ golf balls instead of the Titleist ProV1x’s™ he prefers when he plays The Floridian™ with Tiger Woods.

Q: People’s health insurance premiums are rising because:

  1. Obamacare’s costs are untenable at current rates.
  2. Insurance companies are, like, totally evil and stuff.
  3. Doctors are mean.
  4. There’s a secret plot to help Donna Brazile maintain relevancy.

Q: As a direct result of Obamacare:

  1. Birth control pills are pretty much taxpayer-covered.
  2. Planned Parenthood is retraining abortionists to dispense IUDs.
  3. Senator Bob Menendez is thinking about moving to Las Vegas.
  4. Sandra Fluke is constantly out of breath.

Q: Hillary Clinton reversed her position on same-sex marriage because:

  1. She’s a calculating political animal who shares her husband’s penchant for governing by opinion poll.
  2. She figures gay couples should suffer just as much as she has.
  3. Her husband did, and she has yet to secure his 2016 endorsement.
  4. May Day at Janet Reno’s house last year was really awkward.

Q: A nuclear-armed North Korea:

  1. Seriously threatens the balance of global power, given the nature and associations of the Pyongyang regime.
  2. Gives the Chicoms something to do besides torturing dissidents.
  3. Gives the Chicoms something to do besides counting the IOUs we’ve written them.
  4. Gives the Chicoms something to do besides enabling the Pyongyang regime’s nuclear ambitions.

Q: Iran’s increasing belligerence is caused by:

  1. The fact that the only thing worse than an islamofascist is nuclear-armed islamofascist.
  2. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s attempts to make up for being a tiny little man.
  3. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s attempts to make up for being a tiny little man, in more ways than one.
  4. Something President George W. Bush did in the country next door.

Q: The so-called “Arab Spring” has produced:

  1. An increasingly dicey Mideast with war nearing virtual certainty.
  2. Wild hijinks like Benghazi.
  3. Iran’s totally not-weapons-related nuclear program.
  4. More for former President Jimmy Carter to blame on Israel.

Q: Benghazi is:

  1. A town in Libya where four Americans were murdered by islamofascists while Obama and his aides did less than nothing and then created a cover-up that continues to this day.
  2. A town in Libya where a YouTube video made everyone go temporarily insane with rage six months after the video was released.
  3. Something you can get from drinking the water in Libya.
  4. Totally no big deal, because… shut up.

Q: Obama’s approval rating has sunk below 50 percent because:

  1. Instead of showing constructive leadership on the economy, diplomacy or society, he has whined and griped about how those poopy Republicans are mean to him.
  2. Somewhere between 50 percent and 55 percent of the American people are racist.
  3. Somewhere between 50 percent and 55 percent of the American people are really racist.
  4. He drank the water in Libya and got a scorching case of the Benghazis.

Q: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg tried to dictate the size of beverage containers because:

  1. He actually thinks people’s dietary habits fall under his authority.
  2. The only carbonated beverage he considers worth drinking is Veuve Clicquot™.
  3. Soda makes his armed bodyguards gassy.
  4. The uniforms he picked out for his minions are not particularly slimming.

Q: The Democrats want to ban so-called “assault weapons” because:

  1. If law-abiding citizens can defend themselves, tyranny can be a mite tricky to impose.
  2. Guns are secretly imbued with an innate evil that drives people to kill people; but only liberals can see it, so it’s up to them to save the rest of us.
  3. They’re worried Joe Biden might get ahold of a “tacticool” Ruger 10-22 and massacre the White House squirrel population.
  4. All of the above.

Q: Despite the Democrats’ demonization of semi-automatic rifles, the only actual military that deploys soldiers with semi-automatic rifles as standard practice is:

  1. Trick question; no national military equips regular front-line soldiers with semi-automatic rifles.
  2. A couple of those “–stan” countries that got sprayed all over the map after the Soviet Union exploded.
  3. One of those Eastern European countries with too many consonants in its name.
  4. The security force at Michael Moore’s country estate.

Q: The Department of Homeland Security is planning to buy 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition because:

  1. They’re stockpiling five rounds for every man, woman and child in the country for some reason they’re refusing to divulge.
  2. They’re too lazy to reload their own brass.
  3. Secretary Janet Napolitano is thinking about turning “pro” and needs the target practice.
  4. Who wants to know?

Q: Dr. Ben Carson is:

  1. A world-renowned neurosurgeon who is standing up publicly to Obama’s bullying and fearmongering.
  2. “…the right wing’s go-to black token.”
  3. “…a pawn to get more black votes and change that image of the racist party.”
  4. “…the Negro du jour.”

Q: The recent spate of wintry weather has been caused by:

  1. Winter.
  2. High-capacity rifle magazines.
  3. Spider goats.
  4. A mythical creature which is half-man, half-bear and half-pig.

Well, how did you fare? For those of you who haven’t wandered off to compare your NCAA tournament brackets to the one the President filled out instead of doing his job, the correct answer to every question was (a). For those of you who actually needed me to tell you which answers were correct, you’re going to need some remedial coursework. I recommend the Personal Liberty Digest™.

–Ben Crystal

Meet The ‘Press’

There’s a grave somewhere in which Tim Russert is spinning like the smart meter on Al Gore’s mansion during Masseuse-apalooza. Russert spent decades building NBC News’ “Meet the Press” into the benchmark of Sunday morning appointment television. Not only did viewers flock to the Peacock network to watch Russert conduct a weekly symphony of journalism and celebrity, the roster of guests was a veritable who’s who of the movers and shakers of the world.

Perhaps it’s the pressure of trying to fill the oversized footprints of a legend like Russert. Perhaps it’s the relentless drumbeat of liberal malarkey that has replaced actual discourse. Perhaps President Barack Obama promised him a spot in his next foursome with Tiger Woods. Whatever the reason, David Gregory has fallen into the same pit of partisanship that has turned the rest of NBC’s news apparatus into a weird little carnival of mealymouthed mendacity.

On Sunday’s edition of “Meet the Press,” Gregory hosted yet another in the seemingly endless series of increasingly fruitless Democratic efforts to dismantle the Bill of Rights. While discussing so-called “gun control” with National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre, Gregory coughed up an old and debunked “loophole” statistic: “[I]sn’t that preferable to a big loophole where you have all these — 40 percent of sales, private sales, one-on-one, where you’ve got no ability to trace it?”

Gregory was trying to make a point about what liberals believe is an epidemic of unregulated and unregistered sales of firearms between private citizens. For the gun-grabbing tyrants of the left, two law-abiding Americans conducting a simple business transaction free of the withering gaze of the government, President Barack Obama and/or NBC News is simply too much to bear. Thus did they concoct the aforementioned “40 percent.”

To be honest, I wouldn’t mind if that number were accurate. After all, Americans don’t require government approval to exercise their 1st Amendment rights; so they neither want nor need the Democrats’ approval to exercise their rights under the 2nd Amendment. However, the real percentage of gun sales conducted between consenting citizens is around 10 percent, an admission even The Washington Post was forced to make following Obama’s use of the number in a ghoulish speech on so-called “gun violence” more than a month after the Newtown massacre. It’s worth noting that not only was Obama lying during his January fearmongering session, but he also omitted the fact that Connecticut already has the sort of anti-freedom laws the Democrats want to force upon the rest of us — for all the good they did the victims of Newtown.

While I don’t condone liberalism’s leading lights deliberately fabricating anti-Bill of Rights talking points for the sole purpose of, well, abrogating the Bill of Rights, I do understand that people so completely bent on control of The People will lie like Attorney General Eric Holder testifying about Operation Fast and Furious. But Gregory is supposed to rise above petty partisan dishonesty.

Democrats lie; it’s what they do. Obama deploys the “40 percent.” Congressman Charlie Rangel, disgraced but re-elected anyway, claims: “[W]e’re talking about millions of kids dying, being shot down by assault weapons.” Piers Morgan and Michael Moore jabber like cracked-out orangutans on basic cable television, blaming inanimate objects for everything except Morgan’s weak chin and Moore’s lack of self-control around fatty foods. But they’re politicians. Gregory is, ostensibly, a journalist.

In December, Gregory displayed a standard-capacity magazine during an attempted interrogation of LaPierre. His actions violated a local ordinance which bars possession of any magazine with a capacity exceeding 10 rounds. Though he escaped prosecution for his televised crime, Gregory did succeed in proving that anti-gun laws have no bearing or effect on people determined to break them, even pencil-necked media hacks who couldn’t actually use a firearm without wetting their pants.

Gregory’s murdering his own credibility is shameful, but not unexpected. Too bad “Meet the Press” got caught in the crossfire. Of course, the real estate between liberals and their goal of comprehensive gun control is as dangerous as your average Democrat-run city. Tim Russert would be mortified.

–Ben Crystal