Pygmalion

Richard Fernandez, the creator and writer of the essential conservative blog The Belmont Club, asks how can ISIS receive so many blows and not only survive those blows but thrive. He answers his own question by saying ISIS is resistant to whatever we throw at it because it is not a nation state. Westphalian nation states are very good at making war against other Westphalian nation states, but ISIS is an amorphous blob of fighters who, when hurt or defeated, simply reform and fight on. There is no capital city to be conquered, no Emperor or Tsar to hang, nothing to really get at with modern weapons. The thunderbolts of Zeus do not work against a force like ISIS or al Qaeda. It seems to me, then, that the solution is to make ISIS a Westphalian State and, Pygmalion-like, turn it into a puppet. It should be an easy task for Obama to assume the role of Pygmalion, for does he not already consider himself a Greek god? The problem arises when Obama, again Pygmalion-like, falls in love with his jihadi puppet.

Create a State Westphalian
From ISIS, like Pygmalion
Has done in times long past when there was Zeus
Make them a nation state
Give them their Caliphate
And then like Zeus a thunderbolt cut loose
Give them a lordly king
Line up to kiss the ring
And give them letter agencies and such
An EPA of course
For stocks and bonds a bourse
A crazy leftist polis like the Dutch
And once that this is done
You’ll find the war is won
Without a shot, for when push comes to shove
Obama can create
A modern Leftist state
And like Pygmalion, he will fall in love

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Castrati Voices

President Obama’s overriding goal is the re-creation of the Ottoman Empire, with the destruction of the United States a by-product of that ambition. What will Obama gain by realizing this ambition? He will gain the place in history he has dreamed of since his birth to his virgin mother as he accepts the Sword of Osman and reigns for life as Caliph Hussein Mehmed 1, the Conqueror of Constantinople and the Bringer of The Light of Islam To The World, with the minor benefit of a hareem of beautiful young boys and the pleasure of turning Michelle into a castrati in the expectation that the royal boys choir will need another soprano.

The Sultan sits upon his golden throne
Surveying all in his all-seeing eye
Adoring choirs sing for him alone
As from his lips from time to time a sigh
For seldom has he time to play the lute
Nor time to write the books once slickly Ayerd
He mourns that his strong loins will bear no fruit
Because his chromosomes were all X paired
He reigned until his death by accident
As Janissaries playful cut him down
His legacy a lovely precedent
His fine castrati voice of much renown

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Tiny Flags – Memorial Day 2015

Memorial Day was created to honor the dead of the Civil War, and has since come to mean honoring the dead of all the country’s wars. That is the idea. The reality is that Memorial Day is a beach or lake or picnic holiday, surrounded by Memorial Day car sales, all observed by vast numbers of Americans who have no clue what the day is meant to be. Except for those who have lost someone, the ones who still put the tiny flags on the cold, cold  graves.

The cemetery’s winding walk
The grass as green as grass can grow
Beneath the grass the soldiers talk
And wonder if the people know
What it is like to die so young
Alive until that fateful time
When in the balance living hung
Without a reason or a rhyme
They talk together in the cold
And don’t bemoan their awful fate
For ever young, for never old
They can but rest and patient wait
They know what day it is today
They feel the gentle press above
They smell the wreaths their families lay
And know the tiny flags are love

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Tet

ISIS has captured the important city of Ramadi in western Anbar province, the largest province in Iraq, and American pundits are already wondering if this is another Tet, the offensive by the North Vietnamese in 1968 that was defeated in every battle, with the North Vietnamese suffering great losses, yet was a victory because it turned American opinion against the war. At the fierce battle for the important city of Hue, the US Marines reduced the flower of the North Vietnamese army to rotting corpses, but Walter Cronkite, the anchor of CBS News and the most trusted man in America, convinced President Lyndon Johnson and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara that the Tet offensive showed that the war was lost. The media has no such power today. Today it is Obama making every attempt to convince Cronkite that the war is lost.

The differences are stark, and yet
Ramadi may yet be a Tet
If our Barack will ISIS save
And Cronkite rolls inside his grave

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Compassion

Europe, and particularly Italy, is being inundated by waves of Muslim refugees fleeing the Sunni/Shia civil war, so many that European countries are abandoning the policy of compassion and are now denying the refugees entrance by destroying the boats and ships before they can be loaded. Mercy and compassion are private things, not to be entered into lightly by nations, for whom the well-being of their own people is the first consideration, particularly when the refugees are of a different culture and worldview from your own. Otherworld refugees from violent and bloody war carry their otherworld culture with them as well as all the trauma of that violent and bloody dislocation, and often carry the plagues of war with them as well. Thus, after accepting the first wave of otherworld refugees into the country out of compassion, straining the hosts’ resources and patience, allowing boatloads of successive waves of otherworld, other culture refugees to wander the seas in futile search for succor is not a criminal act, but one of self-preservation. Self-preservation works both ways, and once it becomes clear that no one will take in any more, they will no longer board the boats, but will stay in place and wait it out, as most have done throughout history, for people do not willingly leave the land of their fathers, do not willingly abandon the bones of their ancestors. No war has ever lasted forever, and no people has ever been permanently homeless.

The quality of mercy is not strained
At least this many years sayeth the Bard
But mercy once dissolved is not regained
Though consciences may take the loss quite hard
What can you do when millions clamor out
For succor and for just the chance to live
When one’s compassion then begins to doubt
And giving all is more than one can give
The history of mankind is quite clear
That murder and destruction will not cease
The dispossessed forced from their land held dear
To wander and to wonder if there’s peace
A place where kindly strangers take them in
And see their wives and children taken care
Knowing that their one and only sin
Was being in a place when war was there
But when the first small stream becomes a flood
And refugees pile up before the gate
It’s when the stream turns red with flowing blood
That doors are closed and then it is too late
For mercy is at most at private thing
A nation cannot risk its peoples’ lives
Allowing in the plagues the migrants bring
The plagues that follow all when war arrives

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One Man, One Vote, One Time

The only difference between Zimbabwe and the current United States is the name of the dominant political party. Both claim to be small d democrats, but the reality is that both rule by destroying the democratic process, Robert Mugabe by allowing one vote, one time, then declaring himself president for life. The Democratic Party took a longer, but no less effective route in the destruction of American democracy. Seventy years of progressive salami slicing has done the trick, beginning with racial politics that put once freed African Americans back on the Democrat plantation, and ending with seducing low IQ voters with promises of other peoples’ money. By definition one half the populace has an IQ below 100 and once seduced they stayed seduced. The opposition party occasionally wins an election, but the power remains with the far left radical Progressive Democrats, who seem to survive, and even thrive, despite the enormous damage they have done to the country. The Democrats have given African Americans and low IQ voters what is essentially one vote, one time.

The Democrats, I will admit
Have much that’s recommended
And in return they will permit
A freedom that’s pretended
The people put in office
Democrats who then will harden
Their grasp on power and who when
Arrested get a pardon
It matters not that thieves and crooks
Adorn the halls of power
They smile and slyly cook the books
And watch the money shower
It’s all Mugabe, all the time
Tyrannical precision
Eternal rule because of a
One vote, one time, decision

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The Land Survives

The pundits at the New York Times and elsewhere have now voiced the considered opinion that the Assad regime is finished, and they are concerned about the uncertain future of Syria, believing the county itself might not survive the current civil war. Assad may not survive, and probably won’t, but the country will. Syria is an ancient land, and her present troubles are just that – present troubles – for Syria has seen many such troubles since the dawn of recorded history and has survived. Syria was old when kings first built palaces of hand formed sun dried mud bricks, and wore the royal purple from Tyre. Syria was old when the Pharaohs came, and watched Egyptian war chariots travel the Damascus Road. Present troubles will fade, to be succeeded by future troubles, for there will always be troubles in the Middle East.

It surely is Assad, sad sight
And I don’t want to weary ya
But it’s not right the Alawite
Should rule so long in Syria
A land old when the Pharaohs came
And ruled the mountains and the coast
A land where Hittites played the game
And then at Kadesh made their boast
Phoenician ships sailed the Great Sea
With cedar for the world’s great kings
And with great skill remained men free
Till forced to kiss Assyrian rings
The land our alphabet was born
Where ocean going ships first sailed
And now in war and chaos torn
So long it’s lived, and now has failed
But only man will feel the pain
The land survives, the mountains, fields
The warming sun, the life gift rain
Will over watch, life never yields

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An Preachan (The Crow)

A very old Irish Gaelic fable tells the story of a Prince turned into a black crow who convinces a beautiful princess to marry him. Fast forward to the present, and consider that Barack Obama is the crow, and the United States the beautiful princess. Did not the black crow convince the beautiful princess to marry him? Has the old Gaelic folktale not come true? Does the United States, that beautiful princess, survive the encounter with the shapeshifter Barack Hussein?

The crow pecked softly on her window pane
And called her from her peaceful sleep
Entranced, she watched the crow her bedroom gain
In darkness deeper than the deep
She rose and followed to the tower stair
Above the battlement below
She saw from window slits her country fair
And felt the shadow of the crow
The fall seemed dreamlike to her sleeping mind
The battlement so soft to fall upon
And thought not badly of the crow so kind
As in the dark smiled an preachan

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The Islamic Choudary And Marching Society

A fistfight over whose imaginary god was least imaginary broke out between Sunni and Shia Muslims during a march in London organized by Imam Anjem Choudary. It is not known if there were any casualties, but it has been reported several of the rioters had their feelings hurt.

When tempers boil on foreign soil
Like London in Old Blighty
A few get stabbed and then get scabbed
Though issues are quite flighty
One group has wells where Imam dwells
The other thinks that’s crazy
Both wonder why how hard they try
The future seems so hazy
They always lose when fighting Jews
Though Allah still commands it
On VJ-Day the Jews will pay
Their honor still demands it
And so they fight with great delight
Though blows are weak and powdery
They march along, and sing a song
Urged on by Imam Choudary

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The Long Journey

At age 10 my grandfather was a mule boy on the old Pennsylvania canal. At age 14 my father graduated from the eighth grade and went to work on a construction project, doing a man’s work. My son has spent his adult life in front of a computer screen designing new methods of doing things I don’t quite understand. My grandsons are just entering the workforce after university, and will face challenges and opportunities not yet visible. And so it goes. Did my grandfather enjoy walking a towpath leading a mule pulling a coal barge? Probably never gave it a thought. His world was what it was, and the mule was just part of it, like the rain and the snow. One generation’s present is always someone else’s good old days.

The towpath ran for many miles
The pace was walking slow
The barges, boys and loaded coal
Arrived in rain or snow
The railroad came and the canals
Had seen their better days
The engineering marvels now
Just peaceful waterways
And so it goes in the first world
The all inventive West
Where new succeeds the newly old
And good gives way to best
Lament you for what you have known
But know that what succeeds
Will startle and confuse you
And you’ll know not where it leads
But rest assured the journey from
The first made cast iron bars
To mules and towpaths and canals
Will take us to the stars

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