- The Washington Times - Monday, December 1, 2014

Liberalism is completely out of ideas, declares Roger L. Simon, founder of PJ Media. “President Obama was the last gasp of a dying ideology. All they have left is some pathetic and teetering identity politics,” he says. “The Democrats have been reduced to the party of the rich elite — George Soros, Hillary Clinton, Hollywood, Jonathan Gruber-types — and the party of the poor exploited by those elites, a lethal combination that takes society exactly nowhere. In essence, they are the party of racism and sexism — that’s about it. Oh, and climate change. There’s a winner for you.”

None of this bodes well for Democrats as voters realize their nation’s power and global status is ebbing under the Obama administration, Mr. Simon explains. But opportunity knocks. He recommends the GOP go on the offense like a sports team and pursue the Democrats’ core constituencies — blacks, Hispanics and women. “I’m sure a surprising number of them are ready to come over to our side. How could that not be? They just need a little prodding, a sense that they are included. The period after Ferguson is more than ever the time to do it,” he says.

“Most of all, come up with fresh ideas, even if not all of them are good. They can’t be. That’s the nature of new ideas — to be tested like the market. The Democrats are bankrupt. That doesn’t mean we should be. Be fearless. Be original. Be new. One of the great mythologies is that Democrats and liberals and progressives are the party of the modern. Conservatives are, well, conservative, the party of the past. Nothing could be further from the truth,” Mr. Simon concludes.

FOR THE LEXICON

“The Thatcher”

— A hugely popular new hairstyle in Britain and elsewhere, based on the tidy, but bodacious bouffant of Margaret Thatcher, who adopted the coif in the early 1970s and never changed it. “This is a strong style and gives me authority. When I walk out the door I feel a few inches taller, it gives me power without sacrificing any of my femininity,” one young actress told the Daily Mail regarding her switch to The Thatcher.

MCCAUL’S BIG REMINDER ABOUT AMNESTY

News, turmoil and political distractions are plenty these days. That has not dissuaded Rep. Mike McCaul, Texas Republican and chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, from calling a hearing Tuesday to focus on still unanswered questions surrounding President Obama’s call for amnesty, and the hair-raising prospect of porous U.S. borders. There to testify about federal response and incoming policy changes: Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson. C-SPAN will carry the hearing beginning at 9 a.m.

“The president’s decision to bypass Congress and grant amnesty to millions of unlawful immigrants is unconstitutional and a threat to our democracy. There is no doubt our immigration system is broken and needs to be fixed, but this does not mean the president has the authority to act without Congress,” says Mr. McCaul. “History has proven that unilateral action on immigration simply perpetuates a cycle of illegal entry into this country. We will see a wave of illegal immigration because of the president’s actions, and in no way is the Department of Homeland Security prepared to handle such a surge.”

THE FERGUSON PRESS

Ferguson is an evolving phenomenon that has drawn global press, including interest from Xinhua, the official news agency of China, whose own news crew was robbed at gunpoint during a visit to the Missouri town. A dozen stories emerged — including some that detailed much overseas criticism. “The death of Michael Brown should serve as a stark reminder for Uncle Sam that there are a lot of human rights violations in its own soil and that it should first fix its own problems before criticizing other countries,” Xinhua noted in an editorial.

Meanwhile, a few terse headlines suggest no neat endings are in sight quite yet: “Ferguson won’t heal” (Politico), “Police angry at ‘hands up’ gesture by St. Louis Rams players” (CNN), “NFL says it won’t discipline Rams players (USA Today), “After Ferguson, what’s next for Darren Wilson?” (CBS News), “No overnight arrests in Ferguson police say (Wall Street Journal), “Ferguson protesters plan nationwide walk-out to demand justice” (Al Jazeera America), “Obama wants $75 million for police body cameras in wake of Ferguson” (New York Daily News)

‘WEAKNESS IS DANGEROUS’

The Twitter hashtag for this event reads #weaknessisdangerous. — which sound like a snappy follow-up to the wise old Cold War motto, “Peace through strength.” But moving right along, Sen. Ted Cruz is among the luminaries assembling Tuesday at an august hotel just a block from the White House, ready to parse American foreign policy for better or worse. Joining the Texas Republican will be Reps. Adam Kinzinger and Tom McClintock, the Weekly Standard’s editor William Kristol, plus a team of flinty scholars, James Carafano of the Heritage Foundation, Michael E. O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution and William Ruger of the Charles Koch Institute.

“With the ever-growing threat of ISIS and turmoil in the Middle East, Iran getting closer to building a bomb, and Russia invading Ukraine, I think it’s safe to say that, no matter your views on foreign policy, things are not going well,” says Pete Hegseth, CEO of the Concerned Veterans of America. “What’s going wrong and why? How should we approach foreign policy in today’s world? That’s what we’ll be discussing and debating.” Yes, the big doings will be live streamed online at 12 noon ET — found here: Events.weeklystandard.com

THE AIRMEN COME HOME

Seventy years after their B-24 Liberator was shot down over during World War II, eight U.S. Army Air Corps airmen who went missing in action have been identified and their remains returned to their families for burial with full military honors. Lost on April 10, 1944: Army Air Forces 1st Lts. William D. Bernier of Augusta, Montana; Bryant E. Poulsen of Salt Lake City, Utah and Herbert V. Young Jr. of Clarkdale, Arizona; Tech Sgts. Charles L. Johnston of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Hugh F. Moore of Elkton, Maryland; Staff Sgts. John E. Copeland of Dearing, Kansas and Charles J. Jones of Athens, Georgia; and Sgt. Charles A. Gardner of San Francisco, California.

Their aircraft was leading a 60-bomber formation, departing from a forward base of operations at Nazdab Air Field, New Guinea, tasked with destroying an enemy anti-aircraft site at Hansa Bay. The bomber was hit; four of the crewmen bailed out of the aircraft, but reportedly died later in captivity. Though remains of three airmen were later found, officials declared the rest unrecoverable in 1949. Fifty-two years later, a U.S.-led team found the wreckage of the B-24; excavation and identification through DNA evidence followed. Sgt. Gardner will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery on Thursday, the first of the crew to be laid to rest there.

POLL DU JOUR

74 percent of Americans say the GOP’s midterm victory was a “rejection of Democratic policies”; 70 percent of Republicans, 73 percent of independents and 79 percent of Democrats agree.

16 percent overall say the victory was a “mandate for Republicans”; 27 percent of Republicans, 15 percent of independents and 10 percent of Democrats agree.

52 percent overall anticipate more gridlock in Congress; 48 percent of Republicans, 52 percent of independents and 55 percent of Democrats agree.

50 percent overall say it is a “bad thing for the country” that Republicans will control both House and Senate; 10 percent of Republicans, 48 percent of independents and 87 percent of Democrats agree.

44 percent overall say GOP control is a “good thing”; 85 percent of Republicans, 46 percent of independents and 9 percent of Democrats agree.

41 percent say President Obama is “doing enough” to cooperate with the GOP; 8 percent of Republicans, 36 percent of independents and 75 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A CNN/ORC poll of 1,045 U.S. adults conducted Nov. 21-23.

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