War Zones are Dangerous Places

In our "That Was Then, This is Now" Department:

I'm not minimizing the dreadfulness of the recent news. But Matthew Hennessey of the WSJ has a relevant observation: Israel Takes Responsibility. Who Else Does?

War is hell. Everyone knows that. Bullets don’t discriminate. No bomb is smarter than the person who dispatches it. When the skies are full of lead, accidents are bound to happen, and when they do, political spinmeisters step forward to deny, deflect, delay and distract.

Not here. Israel has taken responsibility. What a concept.

And what a contrast with its adversary. The only thing Hamas takes responsibility for is doing what it loves: spreading terror and delivering death. When a bomb goes off in a marketplace, it claims responsibility. When a crazed maniac knifes random people on a bus, it claims responsibility. But when the subject is its failure to give Gazans a better life, Hamas throws up its arms. It didn’t take responsibility for the lies it told about the misfired terrorist rocket that hit Gaza City’s Al-Shifa hospital in October, or for that matter for using the hospital as a command center. It doesn’t take responsibility for the human calamity it has unleashed on its people with the unspeakable atrocities of Oct. 7.

Also of note:

  • I admit that a certain two-word phrase is ticking me off. And Scott Johnson is also in that club: The mystery of your “fair share”. He looks at Biden's SOTU usage (as I did). And further comments:

    What is your fair share? They never do tell us.

    Why so shy? We we can never quit worrying about their coming back for more. There is a reason they never tell us what our “fair share” is.

    Modern American leftism is anchored in a deep hostility to the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States. As R.J. Pestritto has demonstrated, the intellectual roots of modern liberalism lie in an assault on the ideas of natural rights and limited government. They eventuate in an administrative state and rule by supposed experts. Thus, to take a recent example, the EPA rule mandating the replacement of cars, trucks, and buses as we know them with electric simulacra in the name of controlling the climate.

    Johnson goes on to cite William Voegeli’s excellent book, Never Enough, which I reported on here.

    Another member of the "Fair Share Haters Club", Joakim Book, steps up at AIER, Eating The Rich Won’t Feed the Beast.

    But the rich don’t pay their fair share, you might say. On the contrary, any serious investigation reveals that they pay everyone’s share. Some one-fifth of federal tax revenue already comes directly from the incomes of the richest one million American households. The incomes of the highest-earning 20 percent of households more or less bankroll the federal government. he Congressional Budget Office in its “The Distribution of Household Income” report notes:

    High-income households generally pay a larger share of federal taxes. In 2020, for example, households in the highest income quintile received about 56 percent of all income and paid 81 percent of federal taxes.

    But income inequality is a runaway train, you might say. On the contrary, any serious investigation shows that the pre-tax income of the top 1 percent in America has been roughly flat for twenty years. Counting after-tax income instead, as a share of total income the super-rich today lay claim to about the same share (9 percent) they did in the 1960s. In the UK, income inequality is the same today as when Thatcher left office, and globally speaking inequality is probably lower than it’s been in 150 years.

    Sure, it won't work. Keeping the beast unfed is part of Democrat rhetorical strategy. How do you keep your base riled up unless you keep going back to the well of cheap populist demagoguery?

  • We won't get fooled again. John Tierney is talking about his generation the World Health Organization: The WHO’s Power Grab.

    The response to Covid was the greatest mistake in the history of the public-health profession, but the officials responsible for it are determined to do even worse. With the support of the Biden administration, the World Health Organization (WHO) is seeking unprecedented powers to impose its policies on the United States and the rest of the world during the next pandemic.

    It was bad enough that America and other countries voluntarily followed WHO bureaucrats’ disastrous pandemic advice instead of heeding the scientists who had presciently warned, long before 2020, that lockdowns, school closures, and mandates for masks and vaccines would be futile, destructive, and unethical. It was bad enough that U.S. officials and the corporate media parroted the WHO’s false claims and ludicrous praise of China’s response. But now the WHO wants new authority to make its bureaucrats’ whims mandatory—and to censor those who disagree with their version of “the science.”

    The WHO hopes to begin this power grab in May at its annual assembly in Geneva, where members will vote on proposed changes in international health regulations and a new treaty governing pandemics. Pamela Hamamoto, the State Department official representing the U.S. in negotiations, has already declared that America is committed to signing a pandemic treaty that will “build a stronger global health architecture,” which is precisely what we don’t need.

    A treaty has to be Senate-ratified to go into effect, doesn't it? Or has the Biden Administration decided to ignore that little detail? (Tierney sort of talks about this.)

  • We're still doing something right. Michael Graham reports some good news about my state: NH Has Second Lowest Tax Burden in U.S., New Analysis Shows.

    Just two weeks after being ranked number one in the nation for best taxpayer return on investment, a new analysis found New Hampshire has the second-lowest overall tax burden. Only Alaska, with its vast oil revenues subsidizing government expenses, had a lower tax burden.

    And New Hampshire ranked number one for lowest total sales and excise taxes as a percentage of personal income.

    The Granite State’s performance is even more notable when compared to its New England neighbors. All five of the other states in the region are ranked in the top 20 for tax burden, with Maine ranked 4th highest and Vermont number three.

    It would be an excellent idea to disbelieve any candidate who promises "property tax relief". Ask them if their "relief" involves increasing the total tax burden.

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Last Modified 2024-04-03 6:15 PM EDT