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I looked and don't see any recent articles about Ed Cline on this forum, so I'm assuming that his plight has not been discussed. I'm assuming most people know who he is. He has contributed to this forum in the past. At any rate, I'm very concerned about his current situation. The short version of the back story is this: Ed has written articles on his Rule of Reason blog that are critical of ISIS. ISIS put him on a hit list. Consequently, the FBI visited him to warn him about the hit list. He made the mistake of telling his landlord why the FBI visited him and his landlord has told him that he must leave. A friend of Ed's set up a GoFundMe page to help Ed raise the money that he needs to move. You can visit it to learn more about his situation and to donate if you feel like it. Recently, Front Page Magazine wrote an article about Ed's plight. Based on that article, I decided to write a letter (in the form of an email message) to Ed's landlord expressing my displeasure over their actions. Here is a copy of my letter and I encourage others to also contact his landlord. Perhaps if they realize that their move is generating negative publicity, they will relent. To email@example.com Hi, I don't know you and you don't know me, however I am very disturbed by some of the reports I have heard about your company. In particular, I have heard that you plan to evict one of your tenants as a result of a threat that he received from a foreign terrorist organization. I find that offensive. I know that man that you intend to evict. I don't know him personally, but I have long followed his career and I know him to be a man of courage and principle. I also know that he is getting old and is not a man of means. He has continued his entire life to fight the good fight, to support himself, to defend American values, and to conduct himself with virtue and integrity. And for that, you have decided to kick him to the street. I don't know what kinds of values you have or pretend to have, but there can be little excuse for treating an honest hard working American in the manner that you apparently intend. ISIS may have threatened him, but to pretend that you are evicting him for the safety of your other tenants is tantamount to hiding behind the skirts of women. ISIS is not an immediate threat to anyone on American soil and to pretend that it is begs the question of your actual motives. Though I don't know you, I can only imagine what values you must secretly support when you so easily turn your back on a virtuous and patriotic American. I simply ask that you reconsider your proposed action. Perhaps some soul searching is in order. What do you truly believe and why? Do you consider yourself a patriotic American? Or are you secretly an enemy of the values that made this country great? I intend to publish this note as an open letter and to encourage others to contact you. If you have no character, at least consider your reputation. Sincerely, Darrell Hougen
(Am I the first to start a thread in The Garbage Pile?) The Muslim religion has two different active components. The religion as such and the ideologically embedded fascism of spreading it and imposing it by the sword. Islam cannot be defeated. It cannot be rendered out of 1.3 billion human brains. The practically rendered fascism, however, can, insofar as it might involve other countries not Islamic, especially the United States which has the overt moral, economic, political and military power to do a lot of the job. Terrorism is the exported product of sponsoring and succoring countries. What happens around the edges by individuals seemingly acting on their own is comparatively minor. Even 9-11 and that wasn't ad hoc the way the Boston Marathon bombings seemingly were. What is going on in Iraq-Syria with ISIS is the attempt to establish a country from which to export aggressive terrorism while terrorizing its way to power. This "country" is weak. Just smash it. The US can put in a few troops on the ground to direct effective airstrikes--not the crap Obama ordered--re-enforce the Kurds and let Iran buff up the Iraqi regime such as it is (to the south) and essentially in that open terrain it's all over. The explicit and implicit message is it was fascism that was attacked, not Islam. Most other sponsoring countries should get the message, probably not Iran. Because of distance, topography, oil and its soon getting the bomb, it's a much bigger problem, especially for Israel, but who is claiming the way to deal with Iran is to inform Iranians of how nonsensical their religion is and that its founder was a pedophile? There's a lot of nonsense in Christianity. Good luck in making it more rational and if you need to ideologically power a crusade you can sing "Onward Christian Soldiers" until the cows come home. No need for that. What can be done is use anti-fascism to power the "crusade." What did Russia do in WWII but fight fascism? The allies? Everybody that counted. How easy for secular powers to turn on the jihadists with another anti-fascist crusade, no religion necessary (or desirable [or usable]). A religious war?--NOT! That fascism, which is not exported and oppresses any country's inhabitants. is not going to be "liberated" by any army no matter how powerful. Here is where you get the Objectivism-NeoCon divide respecting this aspect of a foreign policy and interventionism "for democracy and freedom around the world." While a libertarian might be against all interventionism and a NeoCon for any interventionism striking his fancy, the Objectivist idea might be to intervene with other countries ideologically powered interventionism only, as with terrorism, absent a strategic threat's manifestation. Not even communism, what's left of it, does that any more, not even from China or Cuba. We all know what happened to the Nazis and fascists of WWII. We can treat this world through standard geo-political considerations of power butting up against power and finding stability therein. The ideological wars have all been fought and won. That's why the jihadists are hiding behind Islam. They cannot defend the fascism. It's fascism behind the curtain. --Brant
The Department of Homeland Security has lost track of more than 6,000 foreign nationals who entered the United States on student visas, overstayed their welcome, and essentially vanished -- exploiting a security gap that was supposed to be fixed after the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks. "My greatest concern is that they could be doing anything," said Peter Edge, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement official who oversees investigations into visa violators. "Some of them could be here to do us harm." Homeland Security officials disclosed the breadth of the student visa problem in response to ABC News questions submitted as part of an investigation into persistent complaints about the nation’s entry program for students. ABC News found that immigration officials have struggled to keep track of the rapidly increasing numbers of foreign students coming to the U.S. -- now in excess of one million each year. The immigration agency’s own figures show that 58,000 students overstayed their visas in the past year. Of those, 6,000 were referred to agents for follow-up because they were determined to be of heightened concern. “They just disappear,” said Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla. “They get the visas and they disappear.” Coburn said since the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks, 26 student visa holders have been arrested in the U.S. on terror-related charges. Tightening up the student visa program was one of the major recommendations made by the 9/11 Commission, after it was determined that the hijacker who flew Flight 77 into the Pentagon, Hani Hanjour, had entered the U.S. on a student visa but never showed up for school. Edge said ICE agents are trying to locate every one of the 6,000 missing students, but acknowledged that “we really have a lot more work to do” to tighten up the student visa program. Despite repeated concerns raised by Congress, federal immigration officials have also continued to grant schools certification to accept overseas applicants even if the schools lack accreditation, state certification, or any obvious measure of academic rigor. There are now more than 9,000 schools on the government approved list. The list includes such top flight American colleges as Harvard and Yale, but it also includes 86 beauty schools, 36 massage schools and nine schools that teach horseshoeing. Foreign students can enter the U.S. on a visa to study acupuncture, hair braiding, or join academies that focus on tennis and golf. Once the student arrives in the U.S., it is up to the schools to keep track of the visa-holder’s whereabouts -- and report to the government if they repeatedly miss class. That is a serious concern, Coburn said, because a number of for-profit schools appear to have been operating with a primary goal of selling visas, not educating students. [ABC News]
A bunch of crackpots associated with (or claiming to be) supporters/members of the "Sovereign Citizen" movement have got themselves arrested (after a police "sting" infiltration) for allegedly plotting assassinations of police in Las Vegas. See thebelow link to the Wikipedia article on "Sovereign Citizen" movement. Despite their name (which is deceptive - they are only against what they call the ZOG - "Zionist Occupational Government". As for their view of the correct role of the State - one of their heroes is Adolph Hitler). This is the same movement or ideology that spawned the Posse Comitatus and similar Christian Identity groups, starting in the late 1960s, some of which used terrorist tactics such as robbing banks to finance their movement (see the article). What does this have to do with Rand and Objectivism? Nothing. But expect to see the MSM, particularly MSNBC, try to make a link to libertarian and Objectivist anti-statist views. Count on it. By the way, there is an ironic twist to that the MSM will very likely ignore: Christian Identity movement authors have named Ayn Rand and Atlas Shrugged as being part of the Zionist conspiracy for worldwide government. That's right. They have "decoded" Atlas Shrugged, which they claim is actually the manual for Zionist world supremacy. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sovereign_Citizen_Movement