Posts Tagged ‘Middle East’

This is a guest post by John Sanderford

The pro-Islamic, befuddled, unfocused and now wanting NOT to be embarrassed Barack Hussein Obama’s actions in Syria are the picture of a failed foreign policy.  Our Commander-In-Chief proclaims a “red-line”, to at first ignore his red-line and then when it is crossed a second time to says he will attack militarily, to then only days later say he will seek Congressional approval (which he says he does not need) for a “limited and focused strike” that could be larger, all on a “red-line” that now according to Obama was really “international” and Congressional in nature in the first place.  In the end it was really everybody’s “red-line” but his, and the military action is still undefined in scope and objective.  A clown with an Obama face is as close to the reality of our current foreign policy as one can get.  In fact, I would suggest the actual rodeo clown probably has a better idea of what to do Syria than the current President of the United Sates.

Clarity, respect, consistency…the missing pillars of the Obamanation’s foreign policy!  As Obama’s foreign policy, if there ever really was one, begins to crumble, the only question is how many Republicans will jump on board the sinking ship.  To be fair American foreign policy in the Mideast has been flawed for decades.  The flaws are much more than…
We just can’t build nations with the blood and limbs of our young men and women…and a few hundred billion dollars. Both the Iraq and Afghanistan  experiments have been very costly failures.   Until the people of the Arab world are themselves able to reject both secular and Islamic authoritarianism then we don’t have a side to support because the current struggles are most often between an authoritarian government and Islamic radicals seeking to become the authoritarian government.  In a part of the world where democracy has never been practiced, we can’t impose it. There are no viable coalitions of freedom fighters for democracy to support.
We can’t empower people with liberty when we send billions of dollars to corrupt authoritarian governments.  Too often we support bad guys under the delusion that this is the best of two bad choices.  As a result of that misguided concept we too often don’t have any side we can support.  When we say we side with the “people” it is too often because we just switched sides.  That pretense might work with the American media if the President is a Democrat, but it rarely fools the “people” in the Mid-east.   Syria is a great example.  We (Pelosi, Clinton, Kerry, etc.) sought favor and influence with Assad, and now to oppose him the likely result is a radical Islamic regime that hates us even more than Assad did.  Even the freedom fighters in Syria that are not of the Jihadists ilk have never had a reason to believe in America.
 
We buy over priced weapons designed for wars we will likely never need to fight in Africa, Europe, the Mideast, South America, or North America…unless we start them.  The clamor and general consensus for a strong national defense can result in a counterproductive application of military weaponry in an offensive posture to support the folly of nation building or the unwise meddling in civil wars.  Each cruise missile is a “million dollar baby” sitting at the factory.  What of the real cost to actually fire one at a target? Guns are vital to the defense of freedom, but they can’t impose it.
If “eye-for-an-eye” was a functional foreign policy in the Mideast, then where are the results?  Radical Islam is like a cancer.  The status quo cures of “let’s shoot-up the joint” are NOT working.  Our missiles and drones create martyrs for Allah, and the Jihadists recruit more martyrs to send against us.  Thousands of lives and hundreds of billions of dollars have not altered this scenario from New York to Bagdad to Boston.
Heal  thyself, and others can be healed.  We need to get our affairs in order…limited government, fiscal and monetary responsibility, not just “jobs” but opportunity, a real commitment to liberty, and less regulation of the individual.  America is moving rapidly to an authoritarian government by bureaucratic fiat.  Radical Islam can be turned back by power of truth and liberty….unfortunately Washington is currently a cesspool of failed policies, narcissism and deceit.
Thus we are told by our own despots that America, home of the brave, land of the free, is somehow left with only one option…to fire our missiles at some Syrian targets, and then proclaim we are in the right and have done our duty to protect the world from Assad.   The US Senate too often reminds one of the Roman Senate in its later years of a failing empire, but hopefully the House of Representatives will acknowledged that our policies in Syria are a disaster and we don’t have a workable “solution”.  No missile, not one or even one-thousand, can change these facts!
In any case, don’t let the proclaimed Syrian “crisis” make you take your eye off the real issues…Obamacare…the CR…the debt ceiling…Could it be our brave leaders in Washington are so worried about the political reality of domestic issues that an apparent world crisis sounds like a good alternative for the “leadership” to move forward in lock-step?  Heck no…surely I’m too jaded…they no doubt want what is best for American…not themselves.
Obama may have spoke on Tuesday night, but the reality of the situation will be unchanged.  Some 20th Century hawks may call for blood (because they think in a box), but the reality of the situation will be unchanged.  Why do we call someone an “expert” when their primary proficiency in a field, like foreign policy, is failure?
Part 2.  Senator F(rank)einstein goes to Hollywood.  Sen. Feinstein proclaimed that all we need for Congress and members of the public to gain a higher wisdom on why we must attack Syria is to simply produce a DVD of people dying from chemical weapons.  I’m not sure the 100,00 killed thus far in Syria by bleeding out from multiple gunshot wounds, or that where ripped apart by explosions, or that were crushed to death in the rubble of bombed-out buildings will be all that impressed by the DVD.  Nor will those killed by the missiles she wants to fire.  Remember, this is standard Democrat tactic.  The sad truth is that Democrats love starving or dead babies. In the eyes of the leftist even the most counterproductive and reprehensible policies can be justified by the suffering of children!   Is the only remaining rationale to save the President from “embarrassment” based in the emotion to be elicited from a horror DVD?

One of the most overlooked issues of the last four years has been the fundamental transformation of American schools. While we have been trying to fight every overreach by the Obama administration, many activists and citizens have missed the pursuit and now near implementation of the Common Core State Standards initiative. The Common Core is a new set of curriculum standards that forty-five of our states have adopted.

The Common Core State Standards have been touted by its proponents as the greatest thing since sliced bread. As an educator, I have been skeptical of them since day one. I get a little nervous when a supposed “crisis” suddenly has a solution that is assumed to fix all of our problems.

I am a public educator. I will be the first to tell you that there are significant concerns in education. I will also be the first to tell you the problems are not what the public often perceives, the politicians think they are going to solve, and the “educrats” think they have all the answers for.

Common Core is not your educational knight in shining armor. In fact, I believe in the end it will cause even more harm to our educational system.

The first thing that you have to understand is that there is a significant amount of dishonesty involved with proponents of the Common Core. The biggest myth they like to tell anyone is that the Common Core is state-led. I am sorry, but that is a complete manipulation of the truth. State-led would mean that you had representatives from every state involved in this. You would think that there was committee work and passionate debate about what would go into the standards. Nope. The Common Core was actually created by a company called Achieve, Inc. that was hired by the National Governors Association (NGA). I’m sorry, the NGA is not a representative of the people.

The question is, why call it state-led in the first place? Why lie?

Simple, it’s against Federal law to adopt a national curriculum. So, with a little clever maneuvering, here we are. National curriculum, laws circumvented, problem solved, we are the elite, educated educrats and politicians we don’t need you stupid citizens to have input on this.

The Common Core was rapidly adopted by states as governors came back and touted their proposed solutions to all that is wrong with American education. In addition to the support from the governors, there was some very creative arm twisting in the form of Race to the Top which was included in the Obama stimulus. In Missouri, there was no legislative oversight, there was little input by teachers, voters, and local school boards. In Missouri, the state board of education is unaccountable to you and I. They just adopted it and hoisted an untested, unproved curriculum onto every child in the state of Missouri.

There are numerous other problems and concerns with the Common Core State Standards:

  • The standardized assessment instrument that the tests will use are a huge unfunded mandate on our schools. The tests are supposed to be computer adaptive which requires many districts to significantly add or alter current technology. Estimates in Missouri place it at $389 million dollars. Someone’s going to have to pay for this. I hate to break it to you, but the economy is not going to go up with the regulatory and confiscatory mentality in Washington, D.C.
  • There is some significant concern that these standards and tests may eventually be forced upon home school and private school.
  • The assessments are part of a broader plan to collect data on your child from P-20. What’s P-20? Preschool through your fourth year of college. Say, hello Big Brother!
  • Proponents say that we need these standards because we need common academic standards for all American students. They like to say that we need the same standards for students in California and Missouri. Ummm….no, we don’t. Let’s apply some critical thought. Some say students move from state to state, and they must encounter similar standards. Census data says! Less than 1% of American students move across state lines. Furthermore, this is a statement uttered by a person that does not understand our system of governance. Our states are supposed to be laboratories. We don’t want them all to be exactly the same. I want states to have the ability to innovate and dare to change things with regards to education. Common Core is a one-size-fits-all curriculum. It’s top-down, we live in a bottom-up world. Californians are different than Missourians (THANKFULLY!).
  • Some say we need internationally-benchmarked standards. Really? You don’t read much about other countries, do you? The world is soooooooo much better off than the US. I mean the Eurozone is financially stable, Japan is not a bug looking for a windshield (their debt makes us look like amateurs), and China is really a great place to live. I hear their ghost cities are great to visit anytime of the year, and freedom of speech is outstanding, especially when the government controls the Internet and restricts search terms like democracy. Don’t let me forget the Middle East. Yes, that region is an absolute pillar of human rights and respect of differences. By all means, ignore the stoning of homosexuals and the murder of Christians.
  • There are also numerous concerns put forth by many education experts with regards to the quality of the standards. They are wide and disparate. I encourage you to do your own research.

Missouri activists have worked hard this legislative session in trying to get bills in both bodies of our legislature. Please take the time to call your state representative and have them co-sponsor bills HB 616 and SB 210.

Clay County Representative Noel Shull has had the courage to co-sponsor HB 616. No other representative from the Clay County area has done so. Please call them and encourage them to do so.

For further research, please check out Missouri Education Watchdog.