Tag Archives: Egypt

How To Win An Election

Mises Daily: Wednesday, February 16, 2011 by 

[An MP3 audio file of this article, read by Steven Ng, is available for download.]

In his superb analysis of democracy, Hans-Hermann Hoppe observes that “prime ministers and presidents are selected for their proven efficiency as morally uninhibited demagogues. Thus, democracy virtually assures that only bad and dangerous men will ever rise to the top of government.”[1] Those who seek political office appear to be eager to break the moral code that most of us are willing to follow. The greater the power of the political office that a candidate is seeking, the more likely it is that that individual has no sense of right and wrong.

At the local level, we sometimes find elected officials that we respect, but at the federal level, such candidates are few and far between. With few exceptions, Congressman Ron Paul comes to mind, it seems that the minimum requirement to be a viable congressional or presidential candidate is the ability to exploit others.[2]

George W. Bush is a prime example of candidates’ apparent willingness to be unscrupulous in order to acquire and wield political power. The deceit of his administration during his eight years of reign was readily apparent to unbiased observers, and we see the same characteristics in the Barack Obama administration.

Questions arise from the preceding observation: Why are scoundrels successful in the political arena? Even if we recognize that morally corrupt individuals will seek to rule over others,[3] why do voters support such candidates? Would we not expect people to vote for morally upright candidates? Do corrupt candidates have an advantage over candidates with integrity?

This essay attempts to answer these questions and explain why moral corruption tends to be a characteristic of successful political candidates. Applying economic analysis to political decision making provides us with conclusions regarding the necessary attributes of winning political candidates.

The Nature of an Election

Understanding the nature of an election is the first step in winning an election. Let’s begin by comparing an election to private-sector decisions. Think about how consumers make their daily purchases. A consumer will go to Walmart, grab a shopping cart, and fill the cart with items that he wants and is willing to pay for. There’s nothing in the cart that the consumer does not want and every item is worth more to the buyer than its price.

Such purchases represent market democracy in action. As Ludwig von Mises explained, in a market economy,

the lord of production is the consumer. From this point of view the capitalist society is a democracy in which every penny represents a ballot paper. It is a democracy with an imperative and immediately revocable mandate to its deputies.[4]

In a market, each consumer decides exactly what he wants to buy; he votes every time he purchases goods and services.

In a market democracy, voting is registered by spending money. You can have a blue shirt by voting for the blue shirt with your money. In other words, your vote matters. Each consumer chooses the goods that he wants and he ends up with nothing that he would rather not have.

Also, everybody gets to have a different cart. Some buyers leave with carts full of costly goods, while others walk out with only a few items. You buy the blue shirt, another buyer purchases a red shirt, and I decide to not buy a shirt. The fact that you want a blue shirt does no harm to me. This is an important point. In market democracy, there is no reason for consumers’ disagreements to lead to conflict. Each consumer may vote differently, but one consumer’s purchase of a shopping cart of goods does not compel other consumers to take home the same set of goods.

Finally, each consumer has an incentive to be informed to some degree about his purchases. Because acquiring information about products allows one to make better decisions, buyers take time to know something about these products. This is especially true for expensive items. For items that are a large part of a consumer’s budget, it’s worth the effort to research the available options. One is rewarded for finding high quality items at relatively low prices.

Things are quite different in a political democracy. Choosing between two candidates is analogous going to Walmart and being presented with two shopping carts already filled with items. Everyone will leave the store with the same cart of goods. Each cart contains products that a person may want and products that one wouldn’t choose to have, but the voter is not able to take anything out of either cart.

This demonstrates the concept of bundled choices in political decision making. The carts represent candidates and the products are the political positions of those candidates. The candidates might support policies that a particular citizen favors, but that individual won’t agree with everything a candidate stands for. In private decisions, one chooses only the items he wants, since the choices are not bundled, but in political decisions, you don’t have this option. If you support a candidate, you realize that you are accepting a bundled choice that includes some policies that you do not favor.

Also, for reasons that will be explained later, the two carts are very similar. They contain many of the same items, the items that are different are still similar (e.g., both carts contain a shirt — one red and one blue), and the two carts cost about the same amount. In addition, each taxpayer will end up paying for one of the carts even though he wouldn’t voluntarily purchase this basket of items.

We see here the conflict present in political decisions. You want a blue shirt, someone else wants a red shirt, and I don’t want a shirt. Your wishes conflict with mine. In order for you to be satisfied, you support policies that are harmful to me. We don’t see this type of conflict in market democracy.

Returning to the Walmart shopping cart analogy, when you are presented with the two carts, you are allowed to vote on which cart you want. However, you vote infrequently, say, once every four years, and your vote doesn’t matter. You will end up with the same cart regardless of your vote. In fact, even if you don’t vote, this will not affect the bundle that you receive in your cart.

It’s the same way in any major election. The chance of any single vote changing the outcome of an election is remote. Therefore, voters have little incentive to be informed about the items in the two carts. Going to the effort of learning about the two carts generates few rewards. Even being fully informed about the items in the carts will not change anything, since any individual vote will not change the outcome of the election.

Finally, even though the voters are promised a particular set of goods in the shopping cart that won the election, that doesn’t mean that the voters will receive that set of goods. The candidate could promise to deliver a specific set of policies, but after the election, the office holder is free to deliver a different set of policies to the voters, either because the candidate changed his position on some issues or because he was being deceitful during the campaign in order to gain political support.

The point, so far, is that in an election voters are faced with bundled choices, they vote infrequently, no individual’s vote will affect the election, voters have little incentive to be highly informed about the candidates’ policy positions, and the winning candidate is not obliged to deliver on his promises. Candidates who understand these simple facts about an election will have an advantage over political opponents who do not understand the nature of elections.

Realizing this, candidates need to make two important decisions. First, a candidate must consider which bundle of policies will give him the best chance of winning the election, and second, a candidate must devise a strategy that will give his supporters an incentive to vote in spite of the fact that no individual vote matters. I will consider these two issues in order.

Which Political Bundle Will Win the Election?

Consider a spectrum of possible political positions. There are extremists, such as libertarians and Marxists, at the edges of the spectrum. Most voters are not at these extremes of the spectrum. Many voters tend to have somewhat similar views and they are in what we might call the center of the spectrum. I realize that one might argue that the bulk of voters are nearer to one edge of the spectrum than other edges, but my point is that there is a centrist position in this spectrum and voters tend to be clustered in this region of the spectrum.

In order to win the election, a candidate needs to appeal to this center position. If candidate D takes a position much to the left of center and candidate R takes a position just slightly to the right of candidate D, then R will probably win the election. Similarly, if candidate R takes a right-of-center position, candidate D can win the election by taking a position slightly to the left of R. Therefore, in order to win the election, each candidate wants to appeal to the center of the political spectrum.

The analysis above is a watered down version of the median-voter theorem. Candidates of both parties need to get the support of the middle-of-the-road voter, the “median” voter.[5] This conclusion has some important implications.

First of all, since both candidates are trying to appeal to the median voter, we should expect the candidates to hold similar positions. The last two presidential administrations demonstrate this point. Even though they represent different political parties, many of the foreign-policy and financial advisors of the Bush administration would be comfortable in the Obama administration and in some cases the same individuals are in both administrations. Bush and Obama both support the welfare state and the military empire. They both have proposed budgets greatly expanding the budgetary size and legal reach of our federal government.

Federal debt nearly doubled during Bush’s reign and it appears that it may double again under Obama. Both presidents supported massive healthcare bills that increased federal spending and federal control over the healthcare industry. And, importantly, both presidents support loose monetary policies and the Federal Reserve system, the primary cause of the current economic crisis.[6]

Second, we should expect many voters to be unhappy with the outcome of the election. Those who agree with the political preferences of the median voter may be satisfied with the winning candidate’s positions, but many voters hold positions that are considerably different than the centrist position and will find little comfort in the political positions of the winning candidate.

Third, the need to appeal to the center of the political spectrum creates a dilemma for the candidates. In order to gain political power in our system, a candidate must win two elections, the primary election and the general election. The difficulty for a candidate is that he needs to appeal to a different set of voters in each election. In order to win the primary election, a candidate must attract the median voter of his party’s primary voters. Then the candidate must change his position to gain the support of the median voter in the general election.

In our common political language, the Republican needs to take a right-wing position in the primary and then move to the center for the general election. The Democrat makes a similar change from a left-wing position to a centrist position.

There are at least two keys for a candidate to change his position and still hold his political support. First, a candidate needs to appeal to his base during the primary election, without taking firm positions. At this point, he needs to avoid being too specific. He wants to be able to change his position while at the same time denying that any such change occurred. After the primary, he can swing to the middle of the road.

Each candidate knows that he is changing his positions, but he also knows that the other candidate is acting in a similar manner. The winning strategy here is to be the first to accuse your opponent of flip-flopping, and point to his obvious change of heart, while all the time maintaining that you haven’t changed your position at all. The goal is to shine the spotlight on your opponent’s deceptiveness and assert that you are a straight talker who never waivers in his convictions, all the while ignoring the fact that the only convictions most candidates have is the willingness to do anything to acquire political power. Such deceptiveness pays off for reasons that will be explained later.

Next, we must consider which bundle of political positions will appeal to the center of the political spectrum. The obvious conclusion is that a candidate needs to pick a bundle that contains positions that reward his followers for their support.

Voters will support a candidate who will give them political favors. Various groups are willing to lobby government officials — economists call this lobbying rent seeking — to gain these benefits. Think of it as an exchange. Groups are willing to provide money and political support to candidates and in return candidates transfer wealth to these groups.

A candidate can buy votes by providing concentrated benefits to special-interest groups. These favors can take the form of transfer payments, where the state simply takes money from some people and gives it to others, or some market intervention such as price supports for agricultural products or various protectionist policies. The main budgetary task of the federal government is to hand out these political favors, as the bulk of federal spending is made up of transfer payments. On top of this spending, laws and regulations tend to be aimed at benefitting the politically favored classes.

The downside of handing out favors in exchange for political support is that someone has to pay for these policies. The trick, politically, is to gain support by providing concentrated benefits to various groups while losing a minimal amount of support from those who are harmed by the policies.

Therefore, it’s important to disperse the costs of government largesse. If you take $10 apiece from 10 million people, these victims will have little incentive to oppose this policy. Few would find it worth their time to lobby against a policy that only costs a person $10. However, if you take this $100 million and offer $100,000 to each of 1,000 people, then this group will find it profitable to organize a political action committee and give you votes and cash. In order to get other people’s money, the favored group will be willing to organize, hire lobbyists, send campaign contributions to the appropriate officials, and campaign for the candidate that has organized this wealth transfer.

In addition to dispersing the costs of government programs, it’s also sometimes possible to hide the costs from the taxpayers. For example, few workers understand the tax burden of the Social Security system. On their paychecks, workers see that 6.2 percent of their gross pay is taken from them to pay for Social Security. What they don’t see is that employers match this tax payment with an equal additional payment. It seems that employers are paying half of the Social Security taxes. That’s not the case. Even though the employers are legally liable for the tax, they shift the tax on to workers in the form of lower wages. The Social Security tax burden, 12.4 percent of each worker’s gross pay, falls on workers. This is just one of the many ways that politicos hide the costs of government policies.

When running for office, it’s important to emphasize the benefits of the wealth transfers to the recipients of the transfers and ignore the costs to the victims of the policies. Henry Hazlitt explained that the “art of economics consists in looking not merely at the immediate but at the longer effects of any act or policy; it consists in tracing the consequences of that policy not merely for one group but for all groups.”[7] Hazlitt illustrated this idea by considering a broken window. Breaking the window creates a job for the glazier, an immediate effect, but repairing the window reduces spending in other sectors of the economy. The long-run effects include the negative effects on the workers in these sectors.

A key to winning an election is to reverse Hazlitt’s wisdom. The art of political campaigning is to look only at the immediate effects for one group, the group that benefits from the policy in question, and ignore the negative effects on other groups. By ignoring the overall effects of a policy, candidates can support destructive policies that harm social welfare. We saw an obvious example of this broken-window fallacy in the 2009 “cash for clunkers” program, when the Obama administration made the ridiculous claim that destroying 700,000 cars in the United States would help our economy. Elected officials have turned the famous broken-window fallacy into the broken-window excuse for handing out political favors.

Candidates know how to play this game. Therefore, they all tend to favor increased government spending, more burdensome regulations, and additional central planning. The country is headed down the road towards totalitarian socialism[8] and the Democratic and Republican candidates are arguing about how fast we should drive the car.

So, in order to gain political support, a candidate needs to cater to special interests by supporting policies with concentrated benefits and dispersed costs, and, to the degree possible, he must hide the costs of the policies. The lesson here is that a candidate that respects private property is at a disadvantage and is likely to lose the election. A willingness to take others’ property — in everyday life we would call this thievery — is critical to gaining political power.

Your Vote Doesn’t Matter

Once a candidate has bribed voters for their support, he next needs to find a way to get his supporters to vote, all the while recognizing that individual votes will have no effect on the election. The odds of a single vote changing the outcome of an election are about 1/N, where N is the number of voters in the election. Roughly 130 million people voted in the 2008 presidential election, so the chance of a single vote making a difference was, roughly speaking, less than one millionth of one percent.[9]

A lot of potential voters, however, can be convinced that their vote will make a difference. In order to win support, candidates stress that each vote does matter. They claim that the election hinges on every single vote and that the upcoming election is always the most important election in a lifetime. Since voting is infrequent, voters will have forgotten that the last election was also the most important election ever.

Linking voting to patriotism or claiming that practicing democracy is equivalent to living in a free country are also successful tactics. Of course, such statements are false, but many people still fall for these claims. It helps that the government schools reinforce these ideas and teach students that it’s their civic duty to vote. After 12 years of hearing this propaganda, many people will accept this position. History shows that this works.

What Role Does Deceptiveness Play in an Election?

The analysis above leads us to the conclusion that candidates will engage in deception. A major problem with supporting policies that have concentrated benefits and dispersed costs is that such policies are not in the public’s interest. Militarism, price controls, protectionist policies, transfer payments, and socializing various industries impoverish the country. When candidates use these schemes to get elected, they generally hide the fact that their proposals harm the country. Instead of being truthful, candidates claim that the destructive policies are good for society. Of course, these policies centralize political power and are therefore good for those closely associated with the state, but the candidates are lying when they claim that the programs generate net benefits to the overall country. Consider a few of the fallacious claims that we should expect to hear from those running for political office:

For instance, a candidate will never claim that his main goal is to acquire political power so that he can enrich himself. He will use pet phrases that hide the true nature of his policies. No matter what policy he is defending, he may claim that the program is “for the children,” or that it will “strengthen the family.” Other possibilities include asserting that the policies will “grow the economy” or “help the environment.” In the current political atmosphere, saying that you are “fighting terrorism” will blind many people to your actual intent. The point is that simple platitudes will fool many people.

Asserting that your positions will help the country works particularly well if you are an incumbent. During time in office, whenever there is good news, an incumbent will claim that his policies created the good news. If the unemployment rate drops, we will hear him claim that this is his doing. The claim that event A (some government policy) preceded event B (some positive outcome) and therefore event A must have caused event B is the post hoc fallacy. Most people will not recognize this as a fallacy, however, so office holders can get away with this sleight of hand.

For those that are skeptical of your claims, it may be necessary to have some “experts,” bought and paid for by the government, back up your claims. Many economists and other academics seek to work for the government and they see that it’s in their interest to draw conclusions that fit the positions of elected officials in order to be rewarded with money and power. Such experts gain fame and riches and elected officials gain by being able to assert that authorities support their policies. Only the public loses out in this game.

As mentioned before, another complication of gaining political office is that you often need to win two elections, a primary election and then a general election. The problem here is the need to appeal to the voters in a particular political party for the primary election and to the general population for the general election. This may require the candidate to switch positions. The set of bundled choices that will win the primary election may be different than the political positions that will win the general election. Candidates will therefore be vague and try to avoid specifics in the primary election.

Another lie we hear is candidates’ assertion that (even though they would take similar positions when in office) there are major differences between them. Each will claim that their policies will lead to prosperity and security, and that their opponent’s positions will result in impoverishment and ruin. Convincing supporters that there is a major difference between the candidates will make it more likely that they will vote. A candidate needs to continually push his supporters to go to the polls.

A common tactic for gaining support is fear mongering. Fear often trumps logic. Voters can be scared into believing that there will be dire consequences if their candidate loses the election. A candidate can appeal to his followers by claiming that if the other candidate wins the election we will be attacked by terrorists, or our taxes will be raised, or we may lose our jobs, or our children will not get a good education, or we will run out of oil, or we may not get adequate health care, or the environment will be destroyed. While some of these claims may be correct, they are true regardless of which candidate wins the election, because either winning candidate will implement policies that will do us much harm. In making to make such claims, candidates rely on the fact that voters will not recognize that the candidates largely agree on the major issues regarding government policy.

Voting is another area where candidates lie. Candidates, or their handlers, know that individual votes do not matter. Yet these same candidates continually encourage their supporters to vote by alleging that each vote could make a difference.

This long list of deceptions leads us to another important lesson. A candidate that is averse to being deceitful is at a disadvantage and is likely to lose the election. Successful candidates tend to be liars.

Won’t people generally discover that elected officials and candidates for elected office lie? Probably not, since most people are rationally ignorant. In other words, it’s not worth it to most people to be well-informed about political issues.

Consider again the shopping-cart analogy. For most people, the cost of understanding the political bundle in the cart is higher than the benefits of gaining this knowledge. Even if a voter has perfect knowledge about the candidates, his individual vote will not have any bearing on the election. Therefore, most voters have little incentive to be informed. It’s rational to be ignorant about the details of candidates’ positions and government policies, and ignorant voters may fail to recognize the candidates’ lies.

Conclusion

This essay considered the question: why are scoundrels successful in the political arena? Analyzing the nature of an election provides us with an answer. In order to win an election, candidates need to offer their supporters other people’s wealth, and candidates must convince their supporters to vote in spite of the fact that individual votes will not affect the election. Accomplishing these two goals requires deception. Therefore, candidates who are willing to violate property rights — to steal — and be deceptive have an advantage over candidates with stronger moral convictions. So of course elected officials are corrupt. Candidates with moral integrity are at a severe disadvantage in the political sphere. Do not put your hope in political solutions.

Mark Brandly is a professor of economics at Ferris State University and an adjunct scholar of the Ludwig von Mises Institute. Send him mail. See Mark Brandly’s article archives.

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Notes

[1] Hans-Hermann Hoppe. 2001. Democracy: The God That Failed. New Brunswick: Transaction Publishers, p. 88. If the reader is interested in a comprehensive analysis of democratic institutions, this is the book to read.

[2] For an Austrian view of class analysis and exploitation theory, see Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s “Marxist and Austrian Class Analysis.”Download PDF

[3] Friedrich A. Hayek provides a wonderful explanation of this point in “Why the Worst Get on Top,” chapter 10 of The Road to Serfdom.

[4] Ludwig von Mises. 1981. Socialism:An Economic and Sociological Analysis. Indianapolis, Liberty Classics, p.400.

[5] Agents of the state have monopolistic advantages that allow them to support policies at the expense of voters in general, and some may argue that elected officials can ignore voters’ preferences, even the preferences of the median voter. This argument has merit. For this reason, strictly speaking, the median-voter theorem is flawed. However, I am arguing that candidates, during an election, must appear to cater to voters’ wants in general, and specifically to the voters that are clustered in the political center. Once in office, political officials may ignore voters’ preferences. The system protects the officeholders from political repercussions when the officeholders support policies opposed by the majority of voters.

[6] For an explanation of the Federal Reserve’s role in causing the ongoing economic crisis, see Tom Woods’Meltdown: A Free-Market Look at Why the Stock Market Collapsed, the Economy Tanked, and Government Bailouts Will Make Things Worse.

[7] Henry Hazlitt. 1979. Economics in One Lesson. New York, Crown Trade Paperbacks, p.17.

[8] For more analysis of our move to a socialized economy, see Tom Woods’ Back on the Road to Serfdom: The Resurgence of Statism.

[9] See Cecil E. Bohannon and T. Normal Van Cott’s “Now More Than Ever, Your Vote Doesn’t Matter” for an explanation of the point that a single vote is unlikely to affect the outcome of an election with many voters.Download PDF

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The Intent of the U.S. Ruling Class Is Total Tyranny: We Must Stop It!


by Gary D. Barnett

Recently by Gary D. Barnett: Politicians Who Start Wars: The Real Cowards Among Us!

 

As I’m writing this, Egypt is enmeshed in turmoil. The people have literally taken to the streets in opposition to oppressive government. It is about time, and it seems they have had enough. I pray that they are successful in overthrowing the entire Mubarak regime. But why did they wait so long? The long-time U.S puppet dictator, Hosni Mubarak, has been in power for over 29 years, and during that time has been able to amass a huge fortune for himself and his family at the expense of Egypt’s citizens. His rule, like that of most dictators, has been filled with corruption, war, murder, torture, and an abhorrent “Emergency Law Rule.” (For more on Mubarak and Emergency Law Rule, see here.)

Under Mubarak’s “Emergency Law Rule,” police powers are vastly increased, constitutional law and individual rights are suspended, and completecensorship is legalized. This law forbids any non-governmental political activity like street demonstrations, non-approved political organizations, and all “unregistered” financial donations. In addition, and even more heinous, is that under this law, the government has the right to imprison individuals for any period and for virtually any reason. They may be kept in prison without trial for as long as the government desires. Considering recent events there, with police and military actions, rules and curfews, murder of innocents, and the shutdown of communications, including the Internet, this evil law is obviously in place. Does any of this sound familiar? It should, because the U.S government has either committed many of these same crimes, or is threatening to do so. Just consider Guantanamo, secret renditions, black prison sites, suspension (or elimination) of habeas corpus, incarceration without charges or trial, suppression of speech, spying and wiretapping, and brutal torture. The U.S. government and its police-state accomplices have committed all of this and much more for some time now.

The United States government and its corporate partners in crime have already achieved a level of corruption beyond any in history. I base this on the monumental scope and reach of this empire. Many I fear will doubt this bold statement, but before you do, be very careful not to dig too deep. If you do, be prepared for a startling dose of truth and reality. This newest round of tyrannical behavior began with the passage of the atrocious USA PATRIOT Act, the Military Commissions Act, the development of the Department of Homeland Security, the legalizing of assassinations of Americans, and more civil liberty destruction continues constantly. This does not include the atrocities being perpetrated by American forces overseas such as aggressive wars of occupation, operating military bases in over 170 countries, infrastructure devastation causing the displacement of millions of innocents, torture, and murder. Even with all this, the surface has barely been scratched. Most all police in the U.S. have now become militarized and federalized. Large-scale holding centers have been opened or constructed, and the regular military has taken up residence on American soil; not for the purpose of protection from enemies from afar, but strictly for the control of Americans. I’ve written about this here and here.

While the U.S. is obviously one of the most advanced nations on earth, with a very high standard of living, politically speaking, our country is deteriorating at a very accelerated pace. But most in this country still cling to the false notion that America is the land of the free and the home of the brave, and that all other countries, especially those in the Middle East, are either far inferior, or simply third-world parasites with a populace that is less than human. Those who continue to cling to this most arrogant and farcical notion will be the last to grasp the reality that in many regards, the U.S. political structure is little different than that of its so-called enemies. The reason this truth is still so elusive to most is due to the fact that the general citizenry of this country has over time been dumbed down by the government school system. In addition, our society has become one based on almost total dependence, with little concept of personal responsibility or self-reliance, one without morals, and one that is consumed with a belief in the myth of American exceptionalism. This distorted conventional thinking will have to change dramatically before any true progress can be made.

The Imperial United State of America is headed straight to hell, and without an honest awakening by the conceited, and seemingly unconcerned sheep-like masses, this departure from grace will happen before most are aware of the imminent collapse.

This, in my opinion, is why the revolutionary events in Egypt and elsewhere in the world are so important. We all can learn valuable lessons from these revolts. We can learn first that tyrannical governments can be ousted and overturned. We can learn that freedom is still entrenched in the hearts and minds of the human species, regardless of where one lives or was born. We can learn that violence is never the way to achieve a proper revolution unless self-defense is absolutely necessary. We can learn that the people can achieve great strides toward liberty even if the odds are stacked against them. We can learn that a people who do not possess those inherent rights to life, liberty, and property are nothing more than slaves!

The U.S. is headed toward total tyranny in my opinion. I don’t think this is arguable. The government and its controlling partners are in perpetual war with those who never attacked or threatened to attack us. The military power structure is entrenched in most all countries around the world. We are now a people that are spied upon, groped, x-rayed, harassed, and stolen from on a daily basis. The United States while considered the freest country on earth, has the highest incarceration rate in the world. With less than 5% of the world’s population, the U.S. houses over 23% of the world’s prison population. According to the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1 in every 32 adults, or 3.1% of the population was either on probation, in jail or prison, or on parole in 2009. To add to this insanity, approximately 70 percent of those “criminals” are being held for victimless “crimes”; this due mostly to the evil war on drugs, which is nothing other than an anti-liberty prohibition used to expand the power and scope of the State. The number of normal citizens that are abused and beaten by the domestic police state gendarmes is increasing beyond imagination. Our government can now legally assassinate its own citizens, and is threatening to shut down our main lines of communication should it deem it necessary. This cannot be allowed to happen!

The U.S. government, as is true of all governments, has nothing, creates nothing, and produces nothing. It can only steal and kill in order to survive. By definition, as the great Ludwig von Mises pointed out, government is force, and force is the absolute antithesis of freedom and liberty. Therefore, government is always against freedom, and does everything in its power to squelch the voice of the individual, and to squash the natural rights of man. Government literally lives and thrives on the blood and sweat of others, a literal vampire in disguise living off its gullible host. That host of course, is the very people who put the government in power in the first place. This is an irony that is almost impossible to bear.

Considering the modern history of the developed nations, the masses have continually sought a governing system ruled over by their peers who are simply common men. But all men are fallible. Those same fallible men when placed in a position of power have invariably become tyrants. This seems to be the natural progression. Why then, have we never learned from the past? Why do the people of this earth continue to place themselves in the servitude of other common men in government; common men who when given the chance will always abuse the trust given them?

We have little time left. When tyranny rears its ugly head for all to see, as is the case now in the U.S., then it is time to cut off the dragon’s head. The people of this country should look upon the Egyptians as prognosticators of our future. We should all understand that if we simply continue to behave as serfs, we will continue to be serfs. All great societies in history have fallen for the same reasons, and America is no different. Instead of repeating history, wouldn’t it be better to change it? Wouldn’t it be better to rid ourselves of this albatross we alone have created? Even if the masses wanted to continue to have a government, wouldn’t it be better if that government had no power to destroy freedom? Wouldn’t it be better if we were truly free?

The essential feature of government is the enforcement of its decrees by beating, killing, and imprisoning. Those who are asking for more government interference are asking ultimately for more compulsion and less freedom.

~Ludwig von Mises, Human Action [1949]

 

February 10, 2011

Gary D. Barnett [send him mail] is president of Barnett Financial Services, Inc., in Lewistown, Montana.

Copyright © 2011 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.

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Ahmadinejad calls for Mideast without Israel and US

Print Edition
By ASSOCIATED PRESS
11/02/2011
Iranian President says Egypt‘s popular uprising shows a new ME is emerging, calls for Egyptians to be allowed to choose gov’t.
TEHERAN – Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says Egypt’s popular uprising shows a new Middle East is emerging, one that will have no signs of Israel and US “interference.” 

The Iranian president spoke as the country marked the 32nd anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. His remarks came hours after Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak refused to step down, angering hundreds of thousands of Egyptians who have been demanding he relinquish his three-decade grip on power.

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Egypt’s foreign minister to Iran: Mind your own business

Ahmadinejad says Egyptians have the right to live in freedom and choose their own government.

Iran crushed opposition protests against Ahmadinejad’s disputed 2009 re-election and on Thursday, Iranian opposition leader Mahdi Karroubi was placed under house arrest because of calls for a rally in support of Egyptian protesters.

On Thursday, Iranian opposition leader Mahdi Karroubi announced via his website, Sahamnews.org, that he has been placed under house arrest, because he called for a rally in support of anti-government demonstrations in Egypt.

Karroubi petitioned the government for permission to hold a rally, but State Prosecutor Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehi rejected the request, warning of repercussions should a demonstration take place.

Oren Kessler contributed to this report.

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Deep US-Saudi rift over Egypt: Abdullah stands by Mubarak, turns to Tehran

DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 10, 2011, 4:31 PM (GMT+02:00)

In better times

The conversation between President Barack Obama and Saudi King Abdullah early Thursday, Feb. 10, was the most acerbic the US president has ever had with an Arab ruler, DEBKAfile’s Middle East sources report. They had a serious falling-out on the Egyptian crisis which so enraged the king that some US and Middle East sources reported he suffered a sudden heart attack. Rumors that he had died rocked the world financial and oil markets that morning and were denied by an adviser to the ruling family. Some Gulf sources say he has had heart attacks in the past.

Those sources disclose that the call which Obama put into Abdullah, who is recuperating from back surgery at his palace in Morocco, brought their relations into deep crisis and placed in jeopardythe entire edifice of US Iran and Middle East policies.

The king chastised the president for his treatment of Egypt and its president Hosni Muhbarak calling it a disaster that would generate instability in the region and imperil all the moderate Arab rulers and regimes which had backed the United States until now. Abdullah took Obama to task for ditching America’s most faithful ally in the Arab world and vowed that if the US continues to try and get rid of Mubarak, the Saudi royal family would bend all its resources to undoing Washington’s plans for Egypt and nullifying their consequences.

According to British intelligence sources in London, the Saudi King pledged to make up the losses to Egypt if Washington cuts off military and economic aid to force Mubarak to resign. He would personally instruct the Saudi treasury to transfer to the embattled Egyptian ruler the exact amounts he needs for himself and his army to stand up to American pressure.

Through all the ups and downs of Saudi-US relations since the 1950s no Saudi ruler has ever threatened direct action against American policy.
A senior Saudi source told the London Times that “Mubarak and King Abdullah are not just allies, they are close friends, and the King is not about to see his friend cast aside and humiliated.”

Indeed, our sources add, the king at the age of 87 is fearful that in the event of a situation developing in Saudi Arabia like the uprising in Egypt, Washington would dump him just like Mubarak.

DEBKAfile’s intelligence sources add that replacement aid for Egypt was not the only card in Abdullah’s deck. He informed Obama that without waiting for events in Egypt to play out or America’s response, he had ordered the process set in train for raising the level of Riyadh‘s diplomatic and military ties with Tehran. Invitations had gone out from Riyadh for Iranian delegations to visit the main Saudi cities.

Abdullah stressed he had more than one bone to pick with Obama. The king accused the US president of turning his back not only on Mubarak but on another beleaguered American ally, the former Lebanese Prime Minister Sa’ad Hariri, when he was toppled by Iran’s surrogate Hizballah.

Our sources in Washington report that all of President Obama’s efforts to pacify the Saudi king and explain his Egyptian policy fell on deaf ears.
Arab sources in London reported Tuesday, Feb. 8, that a special US presidential emissary was dispatched to Morocco with a message of explanation for the king. He was turned away. This is not confirmed by US or Saudi sources.

The initiation of dialogue between Riyadh and Tehran is the most dramatic fallout in the region from the crisis in Egypt. Its is a boon for the ayatollahs who are treated the sight of  pro-Western regimes either fading under the weight of domestic uprisings, or turning away from the US as Saudi Arabia is doing now.

This development is also of pivotal importance for Israel. Saudi Arabia’s close friendship with the Mubarak regime dovetailed neatly with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s alignment with Egypt and provided them with common policy denominators. The opening of the Saudi door to the Iranian push toward the Red Sea and Suez Canal tightens the Iranian siege ring around Israel.

Signs of friction between Washington and Riyadh were noticeable this week even before President Obama’s call to King Abdullah. Some American media reported the discovery that Saudi oil reserves were a lot smaller than previously estimated. And Saudi media ran big headlines, most untypically, alleging the US embassy and consulate in Dahran were paying sub-contractors starvation wages of $4.3 a day for cleaning work and $3.3 a day for gardening work.

Copyright 2000-2011 DEBKAfile. All Rights Reserved.

Let It Cut Both Ways: US Foreign Aid and State-Sponsored Terrorism

As a reminder to those who read here and an explanation for those new to my site. I post a lot of varying opinions on many topics. Just because I put an article up does not necessarily mean I am in agreement with all that a particular author says.

We learn truth through a large variety of opinions. Just because I am not in agreement with a person’s politics or religion does not mean they have nothing important to contribute to my understanding of what is going on in the world!

NKJV

 

Prov11:14
“Where there is no counsel, the people fall; But in the multitude of counselors there is safety.”


 

by Sibel Edmonds
BoilingFrogsPost.com

Recently by Sibel Edmonds: The Not So Gradual Degradation of a Nation

Material Support to Dictators Who Inflict Terror

In June 2010 our rights and liberties suffered a major setback. The United States Supreme Court upheld the broad application of a federal law making it a crime to provide “material support” to designated “foreign terrorist organizations” (FTOs). Under this law individuals face up to 15 years in prison for providing “material support” to FTOs, even if their work is intended to promote peaceful, lawful objectives. “Material support” is defined to include any “service,” “training,” “expert advice or assistance” or “personnel.” This setback should cut both ways, that is, if we had a bit more application of justice and a tad less of hypocrisy, and of course, far more straightforward information delivery. What do I mean by having this setback cut both ways? Terrorism is not limited to individual(s), groups, organizations; it includes nation states. A bunch of ego-driven scholars or a few anal-retentive political analysts may want to split hairs as to whether or not “state sponsored terrorism” constitutes terrorism, but hey, since 2002 their elected presidents have been accusing nations of being terrorists or axis of evil, and for this, for now, I am going to go with that.

State terrorism refers to acts of terrorism conducted by a state against a foreign state or people. It can also refer to widespread acts of violence by a state against its own people. Based on this definition and based on what the puppet court recently ruled on what constitutes “material support” to terrorism, our government, those who have sanctioned US Foreign Aid to dictators inflicting violence against their own people, should be brought to trial. I am talking about Egypt. I am talking about Uzbekistan. I am talking about Jordan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Israel …To be more accurate, I am talking about Billions of dollars being continuously provided to dictators for half a century who in turn are terrorizing their own people. Egypt and where our tax dollars, US Foreign Aid, went is only one example. All you have to do is line check dozens of our foreign aid recipients against their established human rights (terrorism) record. Here are examples:

In September 2008, the U.S. and Jordanian governments reached an agreement whereby the United States will provide a total of $660 million in annual foreign assistance to Jordan over a 5-year period.

Then, check the dictator’s record in Jordan:

Domestic and international NGOs reported cases of arbitrary deprivation of life, torture, poor prison conditions, impunity, arbitrary arrest and denial of due process through administrative detention, prolonged detention, and external interference in judicial decisions. Citizens continued to describe infringements on their privacy rights. Restrictive legislation and regulations limited freedom of speech and press, and government interference in the media and threats of fines and detention led to self-censorship, according to journalists and human rights organizations. The government also continued to restrict freedoms of assembly and association.

Local human rights organizations reported widespread violence against women and children. The government restricted labor rights, and local and international human rights organizations reported high levels of abuse of foreign domestic workers.

Shouldn’t the persons in our government who have sanctioned and provided financial and material support to the dictators of these terrorist regimes who’ve been terrorizing their people be held liable?

Do I hear a whisper in the background…those who are saying,

Well, the terror practices of those dictators do not inflict or in any way affect our people here in the United States, thus, the criminal liability does not apply to our government officials who’ve been providing material and financial support to those state terrorists. The victims are not Americans.

Let me respond to this point: Actually, yes, Americans do fall victims to terrorism practiced by these dictators which is made possible by our government’s material and financial support. Here is a fairly sound analysis published in 2008 at Terrorism Monitor

A great deal of debate surrounds the factors driving the brand of radical Islam in the Middle East that inspires some individuals to commit acts of violence. A recurring theme in extremist discourse is opposition to incumbent authoritarian regimes in the Middle East. For radical Islamist groups such as al-Qaeda, unwavering U.S. support for the autocracies that rule Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and elsewhere in the region tops a list of grievances toward what amounts to pillars of U.S. foreign policy in the region. In addition to al-Qaeda, however, most Muslims in the Middle East also see these regimes as oppressive, corrupt and illegitimate. Authoritarian regimes in the region are also widely viewed as compliant agents of a U.S.-led neo-colonial order as opposed to being accountable to their own people.

And here is a real life example they present:

There is ample evidence that a number of prominent militants – including al-Qaeda deputy commander Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri and the late al-Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi – endured systematic torture at the hands of the Egyptian and Jordanian authorities, respectively (see Terrorism Monitor, May 4, 2006). Many observers believe that their turn toward extreme radicalism represented as much an attempt to exact revenge against their tormentors and, by extension, the United States, as it was about fulfilling an ideology. Those who knew Zawahiri and can relate to his experience believe that his behavior today is greatly influenced by his pursuit of personal redemption to compensate for divulging information about his associates after breaking down amid brutal torture sessions during his imprisonment in the early 1980s [3]. For radical Islamists and their sympathizers, U.S. economic, military, and diplomatic support for regimes that engage in this kind of activity against their own citizens vindicates al-Qaeda’s claims of the existence of a U.S.-led plot to attack Muslims and undermine Islam. In al-Qaeda’s view, these circumstances require that Muslims organize and take up arms in self-defense against the United States and its allies in the region.

And this point:

Brutal and humiliating forms of torture are common instruments of control and coercion by the security services in police states intent on rooting out all forms of dissent. Previously the domain of human rights activists, researchers investigating the many pathways toward radicalization in the Middle East are increasingly considering the impact of torture and other abuses at the hands of the state during periods of incarceration in an effort to better understand the psychology of the radicalization process. Many researchers see these kinds of experiences as formative in the path toward violent radicalization.

Now, let me repeat again, our government, using our tax dollars, is providing material and financial support to dictators who terrorize their own people, and this terrorization plays a major role in creating radicalism that justifiably directs its wrath towards the United States responsible for sustaining these terrorist dictators by providing material and financial support, aka US Foreign Aid. Thus, with Americans becoming targets (since the money and consent originate from them) and victims, those in our government who sanction and execute these material and financial supports should be held criminally liable. Well, the Supreme Court says so.

The around the clock US media’s coverage of the uprising in Egypt and its domino effect in the region is more and more resembling the Hollywood-esque performance delivered to us during the Iraq war. Remember “Operation Shock & Awe”? Very similar.

Think-Tank experts are popping up at the rate of eight per hour; never mind their agenda-driven foundations and bosses. Academic experts thirsty to dump their 24 letter-per-word academic jargon cache are competing with each other in making Americans dizzier and more confused; never mind their ego-driven hypothesis-based nonsense rarely put to use in real life. A few are talking about “this” as a real opportunity for “that” part of the world to take hold of their destiny and make their dream of change come true. However, not many, if any, are talking about “this” being a good opportunity for “our” part of the world to grasp what has been exercised in “that” part of the world on our behalf, in ourname, and with our money. By talk I mean “straight” talk: free of all the agenda, twists, denials, jargons, mischaracterizations and misinterpretations. If their intentions were noble, these analysts and experts, we’d get the plain truth (however painful or ego-bruising that may be) minus the bull sh..

Let me illustrate what I mean, and please chip in with your straight talk to make this a real straight forward discussion. Let’s talk about US Foreign Aid, and I’ll try to make it brief (“they” may try to persuade you otherwise but trust me, it is not that complicated).

The majority of our people have this romantic notion of what’s called “US Foreign Aid.” When they hear “US Foreign Aid,” they picture hungry naked children with ribs showing, and bowls of Corn Flakes delivered to them by angelic faced men and women wearing bright colored t-shirts with the “US Department of State” logo.

When they read the phrase “US Foreign Aid,” they envision groups of American men and women with rolled up sleeves hammering away: building bridges, digging wells, paving roads…Helping poor nations put infrastructure in place or fight diseases… images similar to what they may have seen in posters and advertisements for volunteer organizations such as the Peace Corp.

When they think of “US Foreign Aid,” they imagine money, their tax dollars, being sent to desperate and needy nations to purchase primary survival ingredients, or, to help with their primary Education… Basically, many Americans think of “US Foreign Aid” as noble intentions and actions made possible by their tax dollars and delivered by their government to help the needy in some unfortunate part of the world.

Believing this false notion has been made easy for our people, thanks to our government, media, and fairytale books subscribed to by many academicians. And let’s admit it, believing this makes people feel good; real good. This unfounded notion of being the good guys makes people feel proud and patriotic, and more importantly, more nationalistic, even more importantly, more governable. This false belief even satisfies our religious and spiritual sides; we, the altruistic Americans, who help the world.

While holding on to this false and romantic notion of “US Foreign Aid,” complications, or, questions bringing on complications, are consciously or subconsciously avoided. Questions like,”hmmmm, let’s see, we have over one trillion dollar deficit, yet we give several billion dollars to Egypt, several billion dollars to Israel, several billion dollars to Pakistan, hundreds of millions of dollars to …then, how do we even afford giving these billions of dollars every year?!” Or, “I don’t understand, nearly fifty percent of our people struggle to obtain healthcare, our veterans can’t get needed medical assistance, many are finding it harder and harder to put aside college funds for their kids, the conditions of our schools are worsening…and we are giving billions of dollars to nations like Israel, Jordan, Pakistan, Georgia, Turkmenistan?! Huh?!

See, those kinds of questions would mess up this entire romantic notion of “US Foreign Aid” held by the majority, and that in turn would put our government in the position of having to explain and present the public with some very basic justification.

Then, there are other questions; the kind that require a little bit higher level of attention, critical thinking, and of course, the ever absent information withheld by the culprit US media. The questions of: Who gets those tax dollars? Why? Who benefits? Why?

Remember, unlike our irate minority group over here, the majority is clueless when it comes to: where is Turkmenistan, and who gets our tax dollars, aka “US Foreign Aid” there? How was our $60 billion aid spent in Egypt? How come Israel gets all these billions every year, when we are pondering about the rising poverty rate in the US and many without healthcare? Why are we bombing Pakistan every day, sending drones after drones to hit them, and then, turning around and giving them billions of dollars every year?

So, with a little bit of common sense and a dash of inquisitiveness we can get the majority to start questioning this entire notion of “US Foreign Aid.” Now imagine the opportunity for some badly needed positive changes here in our country if we had a real media who presented real facts in a straight forward fashion, taking our majority to the next level of consciousness?

Reprinted with permission from BoilingFrogsPost.com.

February 10, 2011

Sibel Edmonds is the founder and president of the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition (NSWBC), a nonprofit organization dedicated to aiding national security whistleblowers. She has appeared on national radio and TV as a commentator on matters related to whistleblowers, national security, and excessive secrecy & classification, and has been featured on CBS 60 Minutes, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, and in the New York Times, Washington Post, Vanity Fair, The American Conservative, and others. Her book, Shooting the Messenger, co-authored with Professor William Weaver, is forthcoming from Kansas University Press in the fall of 2010.

Copyright © 2011 BoilingFrogsPost.com


Visitor provides update on Bradley Manning’s condition

Visitor provides update on Bradley Manning‘s condition

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By Courage to Resist. February 6, 2011

After being detained and questioned the previous weekend, Bradley Manning Support Network member David House was allowed to visit accused WikiLeaks whistle-blower Bradley Manning at the Quantico, Virginia Marine Corps brig on both January 29th and 30th. David has been visiting Bradley regularly over the last few months. Below (select “Read more…”) David talks about last weekend’s visits on MSNBC.

Thank you to everyone who called, or attempted to call, the White House switchboard on behalf of Bradley last Thursday, February 3. While there were thousands of calls regarding Egypt that day as well, switchboard operators shared that Egypt and Bradley were the “issues of the day” being recorded and noted.


A People’s Uprising Against the Empire

Source: http://mises.org/daily/5017/A-Peoples-Uprising-Against-the-Empire

Mises Daily: Tuesday, February 01, 2011 by 

 

Those of the young generation, people too young to remember the collapse of Soviet bloc and other socialist states in 1989 and 1990, are fortunate to be living through another thrilling example of a seemingly impenetrable state edifice reduced to impotence when faced with crowds demanding freedom, peace, and justice.

There is surely no greater event than this. To see it instills in us a sense of hope that the longing for freedom that beats in the heart of every human being can be realized in our time.

This is why all young people should pay close attention to what is happening in Egypt — to the protests against the regime of Hosni Mubarak as well as the pathetic response coming from his imperial partner, the United States, which has given him many billions in military and secret-police aid to keep him in power.

The United States is in much the same situation today as the Soviet Union was in 1989, as a series of socialist dominoes toppled. Poland, Romania, Hungary, East Germany, Bulgaria, and Czechoslovakia all experienced dramatic meltdowns, while the Soviet regime, supportive of these systems since the end of the Second World War, sat by helplessly and watched. Leaders made vague statements about the need for peaceful transitions and elections, while the people on the ground completely ignored them.

What has sparked the uprising? There are economic considerations, of course. A good rate of inflation in Egypt is considered to be 10 percent, and currency depreciation works as a massive punishment against savings and capital accumulation. Unemployment is high — about the same rate as the United States’ — but it is even higher for young people who are worried about the future.

Economic growth has been much better in the last decades, thanks to economic reforms, but this tendency (as in the old Soviet bloc) has only worked to create rising expectations and more demands for freedom. It remains a fact that nearly half the population lives in terrifying poverty.

The core of the problem, it appears, relates to civil liberties and the very old-fashioned conviction that the country is ruled by a tyrant who must go. Mubarak tolerates no challenges to his martial-law rule. There are tens of thousands of political prisoners in the country, and it is easy to get arrested and tortured simply by calling the dictator names. The press is censored, opposition groups are suppressed, and corruption runs rampant. Mubarak’s will to power has known no bounds: he chooses all the country’s elites based solely on personal loyalty to himself.

Mubarak has ruled for 30 years, and yes, there have been elections every 6 years, but these are widely seen as being only for show. Opposition candidates end up prosecuted for a variety of invented crimes. Democracy in Egypt is merely a slogan for one-party rule. And this is striking: the main excuse for his martial law is one that is all too familiar to Americans — the war on terror (and never mind the terror dispensed by the warriors themselves).

Probably a more substantive issue concerns the digital revolution and the opening up of the entire world through the Internet — a species of the very thing that the United States cited as the reason for the anti-Soviet uprisings of the late 1980s and early ’90s. Many young people in Egypt are as connected to the world through social media as American teenagers, and they enjoy access to the sights and sounds of the modernity that the regime so opposes.

To understand what is driving the protests, consider the date that they began: National Police Day on January 25. This holiday was created by Mubarak only in 2009. Talk about misjudging the situation! And sure enough, the government’s response was to jam nearly all Internet communications and shut down all cell-phone service on the day of the planned protest. But it didn’t work: Thanks to what is now being called “hacktivism,” the revolution is being broadcast around the world through Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, even as Wikipedia is being updated minute by minute. And the Al Jazeera English live feed has, as usual, put the biased US media to shame.

Meanwhile, official government voices in the United States have been pathetically behind the times. Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton have been refusing to describe Mubarak as a dictator and lamely urging a transition to an election — run and ruled over by the Mubarak regime. The protest leadership immediately saw that line for what it was and rejected it outright. It is unbearably obvious that the United States is nearly alone in more-or-less supporting Mubarak, but that is exactly what you would expect of the imperial backer of the despot.

What are the protestors’ demands? It is not complicated. As in 1989, the one demand is that the dictator go. This makes complete sense and is the only solution that accords with what is right and just. This and only this will establish the basis for a transition to anything. What follows after that is really something that has to be worked out, not by the CIA, but by the Egyptian people, who have had their voices muzzled for far too long.

What the uprisings underscore is a fundamental reality that the world too often forgets. It is at the core of the relationship between any government and any people, in all times and all places. The people far outnumber the government, and for that reason — and even when the government is heavily armed — every government must depend on some degree of consent to continue its rule. If the whole of a people rise up and say no, the bureaucrats and even the police are powerless. This is the great secret of government that is mostly ignored until revolution day arrives.

More than the anti-Soviet protests of the late 1980s, the Egyptian uprisings reveal what might eventually come home to the American empire itself. Under the right conditions and at the right time, consciousness might dawn right here at home. It could happen here for the same reason it could happen anywhere.

Government knows this, and hence its accumulation of weaponry and relentless propaganda. The difficulty for the state comes when its will to power generates what Thomas Jefferson called “a long train of abuses” that create a burning desire within people to rise up and demand freedom. Because, after all, it is the right of a people — is it not? — to alter and abolish the form of government under which they are forced to live.

Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr. is chairman of the Ludwig von Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama, editor of LewRockwell.com, and author of The Left, the Right, and the State. Send him mail. See Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr.’s article archives.

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Jerry Golden Report For 1/29/11-How About Some Truth.

How About Some Truth.

 

Israel has four borders, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt and we could now say five if one considers Gaza.  Our largest border is the Mediterranean Sea to the west but today even that is changing with the Prime Minister of Turkey making statements like if Syria is attacked by Israel they will not sit quiet that in fact they will defend Syria against Israel.

Today with riots in the streets of Cairo threatening to oust President Hosni Mubarak from his 30 year reign as Dictator of Egypt.  The man that wants to replace him is the former head of I.A.E.A Mohamed ElBaradei who shielded the Iranian nuclear weapons programs for years.  But looking over his shoulder is the Muslim Brotherhood connected to the Wahhabi out of Saudi Arabia who supplied the terrorist for 9/11.  Mubarak’s position is weak at best and his only option to stay in power is to begin shooting protesters dead in the street like they did in Iran.  The question now is would the Egyptian military follow such an order at this point, I don’t think so.  As for what hangs in the balance for Israel and the fragile peace treaty seems to be in serious danger to completely failing and Egypt once again preparing to join in the fight to destroy Israel with the rest of the Islamic Arab World.

If you listen to the Main Line News Media you would think this is a good thing and that it’s all about fighting for Democracy but the facts on the ground are quiet different.  They are protesting for survival, they can no long afford the price of food and there are no jobs, put that together with the Islamic propaganda they have listened to all their lives and you have an explosion in the makings.  If you were able to take a survey in Egypt, Tunisia, Lebanon, Jordan or any Arab country you’d find that the average man on the streets believes that some how Israel is the reason for their suffering and that Israel must be destroyed.

We are now seeing these same riots happening in Jordan and as I stated in past reports Jordan is pulling away from their peace treaty with Israel and embracing Iran and the rest of the Islamic Arab world to make sure they are not next on the list to be destroyed.

What seemed to be the quiet takeover of Lebanon by Hezbollah may not be so quiet after all as riots are breaking out in the streets of Beirut as well and this could be the kicker to start the next war as Hezbollah could very well start the missiles flying into Israel to change the political direction when Israel retaliates forcing the people to get behind Hezbollah and forgetting their political problems for the time being.

We are now hearing from Debka that Iran is sending a fleet of warships into the Red Sea and through the Suez Canal taking up positions around Israel’s western shores.  The US has sent the USS Enterprise carrier with a strike group carrying 6,000 sailors and marines and 80 warplanes, to read more about this deployment CLICK HERE.

In the mean time Syria continues to move long range missiles into southern Lebanon in preparation for the coming war.  As far as Egypt is concerned it may be the only thing that could save Mubarak at this time is joining a war against Israel, but I can’t see that happening in time to save him.

There are many Scriptures that are in the making of fulfillment in all of this, Zechariah, Daniel, Isaiah, Ezekiel also in the Gospel of Luke and Matthews I could print them all here but you should know them by now.  One thing is certain the Arabs learned their lesson in the wars of 48, 67, 73 and they want more assurance this time around and will come with all their might, only to be destroyed by God Almighty.  The sad part will be the death and suffering once again to the Jewish people as the Devil tries once again to destroy the possibility of the return of the Jewish Messiah.

I am asked all the time how does this Ministry play into all of this, all I can say is we have heard from God and we will continue looking towards our salvation and strength knowing that God has a plan for this Ministry, what we do may not be big in the eyes of men, but very important in the eyes of God.  We are short at this time on finances

The larger boat is still our greatest need, and the establishing of ground communications with our boats is also needed. Our travels will not be published for a while for obvious reasons.

As for the USA Obama has sealed its fate with his hatred of Israel and his love for the enemies of God and of Israel, but he put the final nail in the coffin when he repealed Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, now God has no choice but to be true to His Word.

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem, for our son Joel and all the IDF soldiers. Pray for this Ministry and your part in it.

Shalom, jerry golden


Al-Qaeda Targeting Christians in Canada, Austria

FROM:   http://www.thenewamerican.com/

WRITTEN BY JAMES HEISER
WEDNESDAY, 29 DECEMBER 2010 21:30

 

Coptic Christians

Photo of Coptic Christians in Egypt: AP Images

Not content with terrorizing the Christian minorities that endeavor to survive under Islamic rule, Al-Qaeda is now targeting Coptic Christians who have left Egypt for lives in Europe and North America.

The December 21 Toronto Star drew attention to the publication of a “death list” naming 200 Coptic Christians, over half of whom now live in CanadaAccording to theStar:

More than 100 Canadian-Arab Christians are listed on an Al Qaeda affiliated website, apparently targeted because of their alleged role in attempting to convert Muslims.

Some of those named say concerned Canadian intelligence officials have contacted them.
The Shumukh-al-Islam website, often considered to be Al Qaeda’s mouthpiece, listed pictures, addresses and cellphone numbers of Coptic Christians, predominantly Egyptian-Canadians, who have been vocal about their opposition to Islam.

In a forum on the website, one member named Son of a Sharp Sword, says “We are going to return back to Islam and all of the Mujahedeen (holy warriors) will cut off their heads.”

Three pages of the fundamentalist, Arabic-language website titled “Complete information on Coptics” sets to “identify and name all of the Coptics throughout the world who hope to defame Islam.” The website calls the Coptic Christians living abroad “dogs in diaspora,” a derogatory reference in Arabic.

The brutal persecution of Copts in Egypt — persecution which often includes forced “conversions,” rape, and even murder — has had the same effect in Egypt that similar incidents are now having in Iraq: Christians are fleeing Muslim nations for the freedom of the West. But now relocation is not enough, as Jihadists try to silence the voices of their victims with death threats.

Those who are being targeted are not even recent emigres; for example, Sherif Mansour, one of themen on the list, has operated a business in Quebec for 22 years since leaving Egypt. Again, according to the Star:

Sherif Mansour said he found out he was named on the website when intelligence officials called him.

“They asked me, ‘are you afraid?’ I said ‘Should I be?'” said Mansour, who has run a business in Quebec for the past 22 years since emigrating from Egypt.

Mansour laughed at the threat, but said he recognizes the seriousness of the matter.

“These issues can’t be taken lightly anymore…If they (Muslim fanatics) had the guts to fly a couple of planes into buildings and killing thousands of people, what would be the big deal with just one person? Nothing. Am I afraid of it? No, not really,” said Mansour who is an active member of the Coptic church in Canada.

Mansour believes he is being targeted because of comments he made in an interview on CTV news where he was discussing the media’s coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian war.

Mansour said the fact that his picture, cellphone number and comments are displayed on the Shumukh-al-Islam website is an indication that fanatics are keeping a close eye on what happens in Canada.

According to a December 28 article at the “Gates of Vienna” blog, the Austrian paper Österreich reports that the list of Copts targeted by al-Qaeda includes 15 people who are now living in Austria — five of whom are, in fact, now citizens of Austria:

William Tadros is one of the persons mentioned in the list. In an interview with ÖSTERREICH, Tadros reports that he informed the Office for the Protection of the Constitution and Terrorism Prevention when he found out that his name was on the death list. “Al Qaeda wants to kill us because of what we are doing for the Christian minority in Egypt.”

FPÖ party leader Heinz-Christian Strache has written a letter to interior minister Maria Fekter asking her “not to remain inactive when Coptic Christians, who trust in our safety, are being threatened. The Ministry of Interior must act before there are victims!”

The new Al Qaeda group claimed responsibility for the massacre in a church in Baghdad in late October, which left more than 50 dead, as well as the recent suicide attack in Stockholm. The Baghdad massacre took place in direct correlation with the Egyptian Copts because they did not comply with a demand made by this Al Qaeda group.

As readers of The New American know, the impact of the October 31 massacre in Baghdad eventually led Iraqi Christians to cancel virtually all Christmas observances. The Jihadists connecting the persecution of the Church in Iraq and Egypt is now openly spilling into the West. As noted by the “Gates of Vienna” blog:

The group’s website cites the following: “For this reason, the war ministry of the Islamic Iraqi Republic announces that all Christian centers, organizations and clubs with all of its members are deemed justifiable targets for our mujaheddin.” However, those in charge of the death list are targeting the entire free world. It is their explicit goal to establish a fundamentalist Islamic state in Iraq and to act against all Jews and Christians worldwide. The group’s homepage is found in Jakarta, Indonesia.

That would, of course, be the same Indonesia that President Obama praises as the model of “toleration”and in which 700 churches have been burned since 1998. In the West, the political elites remain, by and large, unwilling to confront the nearly 1,400 year-old history of Jihadism, and seem to see its violence as either a strange, modern anomaly, or an excuse to enact sweeping, often unconstitutional, “security” measures that do little to combat the Jihad but do much to restrict the liberties of Americans. As Rev. Elijah Abraham observed in an interview for The New American several months ago: Islam is “a socio-political system that uses a deity to advance its agenda.”

The people of the West would be well-served by listening to the voice of Iraqi and Coptic Christians in their midst to learn more about the shape of that agenda, and its implications for their future.





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