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Cameron’s Multicultural Wake-Up Call

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The following article from the Wall Street Journal has a hopeful message: sanity may be reappearing in leaders of the western world.  Ordinary people have seen for quite a long time that multiculturalism is suicide when coupled with a political correctness that denigrates western values.  Will the elites finally admit their error?

The growth of Islamist extremism in the West is something even the politically correct can no longer ignore.

By DOUGLAS MURRAY

London

‘Multiculturalism has failed,” said British Prime Minister David Cameron last weekend in Munich. If anybody thought they had read those words before, it is because they have. Many times. Last October German Chancellor Angela Merkel (sitting onstage with Mr. Cameron when he gave his speech on Saturday) said the same. Finally, Europe’s mainstream party leaders seem to be realizing what others have long noticed: Multiculturalism has been the most pernicious and divisive policy pursued by Western governments since World War II.

Multiculturalism is a deeply misunderstood idea. That was one of the reasons for its political success. People were led to believe that “multiculturalism” meant multiracialism, or pluralism. It did not. Nevertheless, for years anybody who criticized multiculturalism was immediately decried as a “racist.”

But the true character and effects of the policy could not be permanently hidden. State-sponsored multiculturalism treated European countries like hostelries. It judged that the state should not “impose” rules and values on newcomers. Rather, it should bend over backwards to accommodate the demands of immigrants. The resultant policy was that states treated and judged people by the criteria of whatever “community” they found themselves born into.

In Britain, for instance, this meant that if you were a white English girl born into a white English family and your family decided to marry you against your will to a randy old pervert, the state would intervene. But if you had the misfortune to be born into an “Asian-background” family and the same happened, then the state would look the other way.

In 1984, a British school principal named Ray Honeyford politely suggested in an article in the Salisbury Review that it might be a good idea if students at his state-funded school were able to speak English and did not disappear to Pakistan for months at a time. The result was a siren of accusations of “racism,” which willfully ignored his arguments and precipitated the end of his career.

The multicultural model may have continued a lot longer if it hadn’t been for radical Islam. The terrorist assaults and plots across Britain and Europe—often from home-grown extremists—provided a breaking point that few sentient people could ignore. The question now is what can be done.

In his speech in Munich, Mr. Cameron rightly focused on the problem of home-grown Islamic extremism. He stressed several preliminary steps—among them that groups whose values are opposed to those of the state will no longer be bestowed with taxpayer money. It is a symptom of how low we have sunk that ceasing to fund our societies’ opponents would constitute an improvement.

But this is a first, not a final, policy. The fact is that Britain, Germany, Holland and many other European countries have nurtured more than one generation of citizens who seem to feel no loyalty toward their country and who, on the contrary, often seem to despise it.

The first step forward is that from school-age upward our societies must reassert a shared national narrative—including a common national culture. Some years ago the German Muslim writer Bassam Tibi coined the term “Leitkultur”—core culture—to describe this. It is the most decent and properly liberal antidote to multiculturalism. It concedes that in societies that have had high immigration there are all sorts of different cultures—which will only work together if they are united by a common theme.

The Muslim communities that Mr. Cameron focused on will not reform themselves. So the British government will have to shut down and prosecute terrorist and extremist organizations, including some “charities.” There are groups that are banned in the U.S. but can and do still operate with charitable status in the U.K. Clerics and other individuals who come from abroad to preach hate and division should be deported.

Will Mr. Cameron manage to do any of this? There is reason to be skeptical. In the wake of the 2005 subway and bus bombings in London—attacks carried out by British-born Muslims—Tony Blair announced that “the rules of the game are changing.” They then stayed the same.

It is possible that Mr. Cameron will show more political courage. If he does, he will undoubtedly be lambasted by the defenders of multiculturalism. He will also become a leader of significance. If he doesn’t, then future generations may well associate him with Munich. But it will not be for Saturday’s speech. It will be with a previous prime minister who also went to that city and who returned with an honor that proved deeply temporary.

Mr. Murray is director of the Center for Social Cohesion in London.

Copyright 2011 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only.

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Written by polemicscat

February 9, 2011 at 6:55 pm

What People Need to Know about the Tea Party Movement

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The Tea Party movement is NOT a political party. Rather, it is a grassroots movement of millions of like-minded Americans from all backgrounds, political parties, and ethnic groups who share similar core principles.  These advocates of better government  come from a dozen or so loosely affiliated groups whose members identify with Tea Party objectives.   These people are not looking to form a third political party.  By their own inclination they support candidates of any party who believe in those core principles and who will sincerely take the oath of office to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution.

Those in the Tea Party movement support the original US Constitution as the founders intended it: a document that establishes a federal government with limited and enumerated powers and that  leaves other non-enumerated powers to the States and to the people themselves.  They believe that the Constitution preserves personal liberty and encourages personal responsibility and a free-market economy.

The only way to depart legally from the provisions of the existing Constitution is through the process of amendment, a process the founders wisely included in the document.  So the argument that the passage of time makes the document outdated is false. Tea Party principles transcend arguments for or against any particular legislative or policy initiative.  Honest disagreements on proposed laws and policies can always be expected, and, because the founders knew that, they provided a framework of government in which differences of opinion can be openly discussed and reconciled in a civil fashion.

All this is unsettling to the politician who would rather campaign on a party label than to discuss an issue on its merits. In the last few weeks I have heard politicians complaining that too much is being made of the Constitution.  Perhaps they prefer not to be bound by its provisions. The oath required of office holders is simply to support that Constitution and laws not inconsistent with it.  That oath is required of members of any political party.

It is likely that those who wish  to circumvent the Constitution know that they cannot make a persuasive argument to the people for its amendment.  Such a politician is usually one of the elite who pretends to know better than the people what they want and need and who is unwilling to allow the people to express themselves on the matter. Tea Partiers believe that such a politician should be quickly voted out of office.

The people who fear or oppose the Tea Party movement either don’t know what it is, or they are entrenched advocates of a huge federal government with the power to ignore the Constitution and the power to control citizens’ lives in ways not permitted by the Constitution.  Politicians who want to evade the responsibilities of the oath of office try to smear the reputation of the Tea Party movement because, in truth, it is their enemy.

Written by polemicscat

January 17, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Government Will Ration Health Care

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The health bills coming out of Congress would put your care in the hands of presidential appointees who would decide what the plans cover, what leeway doctors have, and what treatments seniors get under Medicare.

Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel (brother of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel) has been appointed Health policy adviser at the office of Management and Budget,  and he was also appointed a member of Federal Council on Comparative Effectiveness Research.

He says savings will require doctors to look beyond the needs of their patients and to consider social justice — such as whether the money could be better spent on somebody else.  He believes that “communitariansim” should guide decisions on who gets care.

He says medical care should be reserved for the non-disabled, not given to those “who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens. . . An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia” (Hastings Center Report, Nov-Dec. ‘96).  Examples would be people with Parkinson’s or a child with cerebral palsy.

He explicitly defends discrimination against older patients: “Unlike allocation by sex or race, allocation by age is not invidious discrimination; every person lives through different life stages rather than being a single age.  Even if 25-year-olds receive priority over 65-year-olds, everyone who is 65 years now was previously 25 years” (Lancet, Jan. 31, 2009).

But not to worry.  Those with terminal illnesses will get counseling sessions every five years on how to choose different ways of ending their lives.  It’s mandatory.

The bills being pushed through Congress will be paid for largely by a $500 billion-plus cut in Medicare over 10 years. Peter Orszag, the President’s budget director, urged Congress this week to delegate its own authority over Medicare to a new, presidentially-appointed bureaucracy (that wouldn’t be accountable to the public).

Since the time Medicare began in 1965, senior citizens’ lives have been transformed by new medical treatments like angioplasty, bypass surgery, and hip and knee replacements.   Referring to these treatments, Emanuel criticizes Americans for being too “enamored with technology” and is determined to reduce access to it.

David Blumenthal, appointed by the President to be national coordinator of health-information technology, agrees.  He recommends slowing medical innovation to control health spending.  His job involves making sure doctors obey electronically delivered guidelines about what care the government deems appropriate and cost effective.

In the April 9 New England Journal of Medicine, Blumenthal predicted that many doctors would resist “embedded clinical decision support” (a euphemism for computers telling doctors what to do).

But don’t think that just because you have money to pay your own health-care costs you will avoid the system.  That is not permitted under the plan because it would be unequal.  But guess who can avoid the government plan —- you’ve got it — members of the government.

How much chance do we have avoiding the plan?  Here’s the Chicago-style arm-twisting that citizens are up against.  In a Health Care Watch column (Nov. 16, 2008) Emanuel explained how the bill should be passed: “Every favor to a constituency should be linked to support for the health-care reform agenda.  If automakers want a bailout, then they and their suppliers have to agree to support and lobby for the administration’s health-reform effort.”

http://www.defendyourhealthcare.us/

Written by polemicscat

July 28, 2009 at 10:13 pm

Posted in Current Events

More Suppression of Dissent

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Here is a recent partial transcript of FOX News Shep Smith with Heidi Beirich of the Southern Poverty Law Center, a group cashing in on “hate” and serving as an outsourced government-Inquisition. Thanks to Mike Tuggle at www.dixienet.org blog:

Beirich: The Department of Homeland Security report got savaged, but they were on to something there. We’ve had several examples of domestic terrorism just in the last few months. We had a crazed cop killer in Pittsburgh who was motivated by racism and anti-government views, who killed three people in his front yard. We had a guy who was actually found with the components of a dirty bomb according to the FBI in January in Bangor, Maine, who had a whole bunch of anti-government beliefs. We’ve had two assassination plots against the president by some skinheads.
Smith: How are you handling that through your organization? I’m sure you’re getting busier.
Beirich: We’ve been very busy! Our biggest concern right now is we’re making sure we’re getting the right information into law enforcement’s hands so they can deal with these problems, so we’re monitoring all these web sites and publications from these folks, all these racists and anti-government types, and when we see something frightening, we’re passing it on to law enforcement.

In case you didn’t notice, Beirich is telling us that the Department of Homeland Security report alerting Americans to the terror threat posed by activists supporting gun rights, border security, and Ron Paul was correct. And you can’t ignore the drumbeat pounding in the idea that anyone who questions the government suffers from irrational hatred of others.
Shep bids adieu to Heidi by wishing the best of luck to her “terrific organization.” Fair and balanced.
In a must-read post on Lew Rockwell today, William Norman Grigg discusses how the old Soviet Union also equated dissent with “crazed” behavior:

This was the logic – if that word applies – behind the political use of psychiatry in the Soviet Union: Only someone clinically deranged could hate socialism, and since such people were a danger to themselves and society, they had to be incarcerated in the psiushka (psychiatric gulag) and forcibly cured of their anti-social(ist) tendencies. The heroic former Soviet dissident Vladimir Bukovsky recounts his own experience in the Soviet psycho-gulag in his memoir, To Build a Castle.

The Soviet use of psychiatry was an outgrowth of the Regime’s longstanding policy of pre-emption: Threats to “stability” and “social order” had to be recognized and aborted before they reached maturity.

We haven’t reached the point where we must turn in our friends and family to prove our loyalty and rationality. At least, not yet.

Written by polemicscat

June 21, 2009 at 5:32 pm

Posted in Current Events

Tagged with ,

Is Sotomayor Qualified?

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President Obama has nominated Judge Sonia Sotomayor to fill the forthcoming vacancy on the Supreme Court.  She fits the President’s desire to have an “empathetic” Justice in the Court— one who is more interested in subjective and personal experience than in a rigorous following of the Constitution and law.                                     

The New York Times reported that the prominent cause of Judge Sotomayor’s career has been advancing persons of color, over whites, based on race and national origin.  Consequently, there has been criticism from some conservatives who identify her rulings as just another form of racial bigotry.

Patrick Buchanan says, “Down the path Sotomayor would take us lies an America where Hispanic justices rule for Hispanics, black judges rule for blacks and white judges rule for white folks.”  Mr. Buchanan adds that “Obama would not have selected Sotomayor if he did not share her convictions. And there is nothing in his writings or career to hint at disagreement.”

An analysis by Andy McCarthy (“The Corner,” NRO) puts a little different light on the subject.  He says forget whether she is too racist to be a Supreme Court Justice; would Judge Sotomayor qualify as a juror? 

He says citizens who are called to jury duty “have a sworn obligation to decide cases objectively—without fear or favor.”  McCarthy says that Judges at every single trial solemnly instruct prospective jurors “that if the person believes he or she has a bias or prejudice, especially one based on a belief that people are inferior or superior due to such factors as race, ethnicity, or sex, the person is not qualified to be a juror.”

Mr. McCarthy then gives a standard set of instructions used by a judge in selecting a jury:

You have two duties as a jury. Your first duty is to decide the facts from the evidence in the case. This is your job, and yours alone. Your second duty is to apply the law that I give you to the facts. You must follow these instructions, even if you disagree with them…. Perform these duties fairly and impartially. Do not allow sympathy, prejudice, fear, or public opinion to influence you. You should not be influenced by any person’s race, color, religion, national ancestry, or sex.

Would Judge Sotomayor be qualified to serve as a juror?  She has gone on record as saying that she believed a wise Latina makes better judgments than a white male; that she doubts it is actually possible to “transcend [one’s] personal sympathies and prejudices and aspire to achieve a greater degree of fairness and integrity based on the reason of law”; and that there are “basic differences” in the way people “of color” exercise “logic and reasoning.”

McCarthy then asks:  “If, upon hearing that, would it not be reasonable for a lawyer for one (or both) of the parties to ask the court to excuse her for cause? Would it not be incumbent on the court to grant that request?  Should we have on the Supreme Court, where jury verdicts are reviewed, a justice who would have difficulty qualifying for jury service?”

Written by polemicscat

June 10, 2009 at 10:42 am

Department of Homeland Security Tries to Suppress Dissent

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The Department of Homeland Security has written and is circulating within the Federal Government a document that has all the markings of an attempt to suppress dissent and freedom of speech.  It attempts to do this through intimidation.  The document is printed below.

The paper is based on pure supposition and has, by its own admission, no evidence of unlawful activities—that is, unless free speech is considered a crime.  The fanciful labeling of any speech which is a dissent from the Government’s own line of propaganda is considered throughout the paper as evidence of “rightwing extremism.”  The term is used repeatedly to paint all sorts of Americans as threats to the country and as potential recruits for violence against the Government. 

It is a variation on thought policing  designed to prevent any criticism of the central government’s policy.  And it is a strawman tactic that  resembles Obama’s repeated references during the campaign to racism when he was the only one dealing in the language of racism at the time.

U//FOUO)( Rightwing Extremism: Current
Economic and Political Climate Fueling
Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment

7 April 2009
(U) Prepared by the Extremism and Radicalization Branch, Homeland Environment Threat Analysis
Division. Coordinated with the FBI.

(U) Scope
(U//FOUO) This product is one of a series of intelligence assessments published by the
Extremism and Radicalization Branch to facilitate a greater understanding of the
phenomenon of violent radicalization in the United States. The information is
provided to federal, state, local, and tribal counterterrorism and law enforcement
officials so they may effectively deter, prevent, preempt, or respond to terrorist attacks
against the United States. Federal efforts to influence domestic public opinion must be
conducted in an overt and transparent manner, clearly identifying United States
Government sponsorship.

 

(U) Key Findings
(U//LES) The DHS/Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) has no specific
information that domestic rightwing* terrorists are currently planning acts of violence,
but rightwing extremists may be gaining new recruits by playing on their fears about
several emergent issues. The economic downturn and the election of the first
African American president present unique drivers for rightwing radicalization and
recruitment.

— (U//LES) Threats from white supremacist and violent antigovernment groups
during 2009 have been largely rhetorical and have not indicated plans to carry
out violent acts. Nevertheless, the consequences of a prolonged economic
downturn—including real estate foreclosures, unemployment, and an inability
to obtain credit—could create a fertile recruiting environment for rightwing
extremists and even result in confrontations between such groups and
government authorities similar to those in the past.

— (U//LES) Rightwing extremists have capitalized on the election of the first
African American president, and are focusing their efforts to recruit new
members, mobilize existing supporters, and broaden their scope and appeal
through propaganda, but they have not yet turned to attack planning.
(U//FOUO) The current economic and political climate has some similarities to the
1990s when rightwing extremism experienced a resurgence fueled largely by an
economic recession, criticism about the outsourcing of jobs, and the perceived threat to
U.S. power and sovereignty by other foreign powers.

— (U//FOUO) During the 1990s, these issues contributed to the growth in the
number of domestic rightwing terrorist and extremist groups and an increase in
violent acts targeting government facilities, law enforcement officers, banks,
and infrastructure sectors.

— (U//FOUO) Growth of these groups subsided in reaction to increased
government scrutiny as a result of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing and
disrupted plots, improvements in the economy, and the continued U.S. standing
as the preeminent world power.

(U//FOUO) The possible passage of new restrictions on firearms and the return of
military veterans facing significant challenges reintegrating into their communities
could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists
capable of carrying out violent attacks.

(U) Rightwing extremism in the United States can be broadly divided into those groups, movements, and
adherents that are primarily hate-oriented (based on hatred of particular religious, racial or ethnic groups),
and those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or
rejecting government authority entirely. It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a
single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration.
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
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Page 3 of 9

— (U//FOUO) Proposed imposition of firearms restrictions and weapons bans
likely would attract new members into the ranks of rightwing extremist groups,
as well as potentially spur some of them to begin planning and training for
violence against the government. The high volume of purchases and
stockpiling of weapons and ammunition by rightwing extremists in anticipation
of restrictions and bans in some parts of the country continue to be a primary
concern to law enforcement.

— (U//FOUO) Returning veterans possess combat skills and experience that are
attractive to rightwing extremists. DHS/I&A is concerned that rightwing
extremists will attempt to recruit and radicalize returning veterans in order to
boost their violent capabilities.

(U) Current Economic and Political Climate

(U//FOUO) DHS/I&A assesses that a number of economic and political factors are
driving a resurgence in rightwing extremist recruitment and radicalization activity.
Despite similarities to the climate of the 1990s, the threat posed by lone wolves and small
terrorist cells is more pronounced than in past years. In addition, the historical election of
an African American president and the prospect of policy changes are proving to be a
driving force for rightwing extremist recruitment and radicalization.

— (U) A recent example of the potential violence associated with a rise in rightwing
extremism may be found in the shooting deaths of three police officers in
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on 4 April 2009. The alleged gunman’s reaction
reportedly was influenced by his racist ideology and belief in antigovernment
conspiracy theories related to gun confiscations, citizen detention camps, and a
Jewish-controlled “one world government.”

(U) Exploiting Economic Downturn

(U//FOUO) Rightwing extremist chatter on the Internet continues to focus on the
economy, the perceived loss of U.S. jobs in the manufacturing and construction sectors,
and home foreclosures. Anti-Semitic extremists attribute these losses to a deliberate
conspiracy conducted by a cabal of Jewish “financial elites.” These “accusatory” tactics
are employed to draw new recruits into rightwing extremist groups and further radicalize
those already subscribing to extremist beliefs. DHS/I&A assesses this trend is likely to
accelerate if the economy is perceived to worsen.

(U) Historical Presidential Election

(U//LES) Rightwing extremists are harnessing this historical election as a recruitment
tool. Many rightwing extremists are antagonistic toward the new presidential
administration and its perceived stance on a range of issues, including immigration and
citizenship, the expansion of social programs to minorities, and restrictions on firearms
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
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Page 4 of 9

(U//FOUO) Perceptions on Poverty and Radicalization

(U//FOUO) Scholars and experts disagree over poverty’s role in motivating violent radicalization or
terrorist activity. High unemployment, however, has the potential to lead to alienation, thus increasing
an individual’s susceptibility to extremist ideas. According to a 2007 study from the German Institute
for Economic Research, there appears to be a strong association between a parent’s unemployment
status and the formation of rightwing extremist beliefs in their children—specifically xenophobia and
antidemocratic ideals.
ownership and use. Rightwing extremists are increasingly galvanized by these concerns
and leverage them as drivers for recruitment. From the 2008 election timeframe to the
present, rightwing extremists have capitalized on related racial and political prejudices in
expanded propaganda campaigns, thereby reaching out to a wider audience of potential
sympathizers.

— (U//LES) Most statements by rightwing extremists have been rhetorical,
expressing concerns about the election of the first African American president,
but stopping short of calls for violent action. In two instances in the run-up to the
election, extremists appeared to be in the early planning stages of some
threatening activity targeting the Democratic nominee, but law enforcement
interceded.

(U) Revisiting the 1990s

(U//FOUO) Paralleling the current national climate, rightwing extremists during the
1990s exploited a variety of social issues and political themes to increase group visibility
and recruit new members. Prominent among these themes were the militia movement’s
opposition to gun control efforts, criticism of free trade agreements (particularly those
with Mexico), and highlighting perceived government infringement on civil liberties as
well as white supremacists’ longstanding exploitation of social issues such as abortion,
inter-racial crimes, and same-sex marriage. During the 1990s, these issues contributed to
the growth in the number of domestic rightwing terrorist and extremist groups and an
increase in violent acts targeting government facilities, law enforcement officers, banks,
and infrastructure sectors.

(U) Economic Hardship and Extremism

(U//FOUO) Historically, domestic rightwing extremists have feared, predicted, and
anticipated a cataclysmic economic collapse in the United States. Prominent
antigovernment conspiracy theorists have incorporated aspects of an impending
economic collapse to intensify fear and paranoia among like-minded individuals and to
attract recruits during times of economic uncertainty. Conspiracy theories involving
declarations of martial law, impending civil strife or racial conflict, suspension of the
U.S. Constitution, and the creation of citizen detention camps often incorporate aspects of
a failed economy. Antigovernment conspiracy theories and “end times” prophecies could
motivate extremist individuals and groups to stockpile food, ammunition, and weapons.
These teachings also have been linked with the radicalization of domestic extremist
individuals and groups in the past, such as violent Christian Identity organizations and
extremist members of the militia movement.
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
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Page 5 of 9

(U) Illegal Immigration

(U//FOUO) Rightwing extremists were concerned during the 1990s with the perception
that illegal immigrants were taking away American jobs through their willingness to
work at significantly lower wages. They also opposed free trade agreements, arguing that
these arrangements resulted in Americans losing jobs to countries such as Mexico.

(U//FOUO) Over the past five years, various rightwing extremists, including militias and
white supremacists, have adopted the immigration issue as a call to action, rallying point,
and recruiting tool. Debates over appropriate immigration levels and enforcement policy
generally fall within the realm of protected political speech under the First Amendment,
but in some cases, anti-immigration or strident pro-enforcement fervor has been directed
against specific groups and has the potential to turn violent.

(U//FOUO) DHS/I&A assesses that rightwing extremist groups’ frustration over a
perceived lack of government action on illegal immigration has the potential to incite
individuals or small groups toward violence. If such violence were to occur, it likely
would be isolated, small-scale, and directed at specific immigration-related targets.

— (U//FOUO) DHS/I&A notes that prominent civil rights organizations have
observed an increase in anti-Hispanic crimes over the past five years.

— (U) In April 2007, six militia members were arrested for various weapons and
explosives violations. Open source reporting alleged that those arrested had
discussed and conducted surveillance for a machinegun attack on Hispanics.

— (U) A militia member in Wyoming was arrested in February 2007 after
communicating his plans to travel to the Mexican border to kill immigrants
crossing into the United States.

(U) Legislative and Judicial Drivers

 

(U//FOUO) Many rightwing extremist groups perceive recent gun control legislation as a
threat to their right to bear arms and in response have increased weapons and ammunition
stockpiling, as well as renewed participation in paramilitary training exercises. Such
activity, combined with a heightened level of extremist paranoia, has the potential to
facilitate criminal activity and violence.

— (U//FOUO) During the 1990s, rightwing extremist hostility toward government
was fueled by the implementation of restrictive gun laws—such as the Brady Law
that established a 5-day waiting period prior to purchasing a handgun and the
1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act that limited the sale of
various types of assault rifles—and federal law enforcement’s handling of the
confrontations at Waco, Texas and Ruby Ridge, Idaho.
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
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Page 6 of 9

— (U//FOUO) On the current front, legislation has been proposed this year
requiring mandatory registration of all firearms in the United States. Similar
legislation was introduced in 2008 in several states proposing mandatory tagging
and registration of ammunition. It is unclear if either bill will be passed into law;
nonetheless, a correlation may exist between the potential passage of gun control
legislation and increased hoarding of ammunition, weapons stockpiling, and
paramilitary training activities among rightwing extremists.
(U//FOUO) Open source reporting of wartime ammunition shortages has likely spurred
rightwing extremists—as well as law-abiding Americans—to make bulk purchases of
ammunition. These shortages have increased the cost of ammunition, further
exacerbating rightwing extremist paranoia and leading to further stockpiling activity.
Both rightwing extremists and law-abiding citizens share a belief that rising crime rates
attributed to a slumping economy make the purchase of legitimate firearms a wise move
at this time.

(U//FOUO) Weapons rights and gun-control legislation are likely to be hotly contested
subjects of political debate in light of the 2008 Supreme Court’s decision in District of
Columbia v. Heller in which the Court reaffirmed an individual’s right to keep and bear
arms under the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, but left open to debate the
precise contours of that right. Because debates over constitutional rights are intense, and
parties on all sides have deeply held, sincere, but vastly divergent beliefs, violent
extremists may attempt to co-opt the debate and use the controversy as a radicalization
tool.

(U) Perceived Threat from Rise of Other Countries

(U//FOUO) Rightwing extremist paranoia of foreign regimes could escalate or be
magnified in the event of an economic crisis or military confrontation, harkening back to
the “New World Order” conspiracy theories of the 1990s. The dissolution of Communist
countries in Eastern Europe and the end of the Soviet Union in the 1990s led some
rightwing extremists to believe that a “New World Order” would bring about a world
government that would usurp the sovereignty of the United States and its Constitution,
thus infringing upon their liberty. The dynamics in 2009 are somewhat similar, as other
countries, including China, India, and Russia, as well as some smaller, oil-producing
states, are experiencing a rise in economic power and influence.

— (U//FOUO) Fear of Communist regimes and related conspiracy theories
characterizing the U.S. Government’s role as either complicit in a foreign
invasion or acquiescing as part of a “One World Government” plan inspired
extremist members of the militia movement to target government and military
facilities in past years.

— (U//FOUO) Law enforcement in 1996 arrested three rightwing militia members
in Battle Creek, Michigan with pipe bombs, automatic weapons, and military
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
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Page 7 of 9

(U//FOUO) Lone Wolves and Small Terrorist Cells

(U//FOUO) DHS/I&A assesses that lone wolves and small terrorist cells embracing violent rightwing extremist ideology are the most dangerous domestic terrorism threat in the United States. Informationfrom law enforcement and nongovernmental organizations indicates lone wolves and small terrorist cells have shown intent—and, in some cases, the capability—to commit violent acts.

— (U//LES) DHS/I&A has concluded that white supremacist lone wolves pose the most
significant domestic terrorist threat because of their low profile and autonomy—separate from any formalized group—which hampers warning efforts.

— (U//FOUO) Similarly, recent state and municipal law enforcement reporting has warned of the dangers of rightwing extremists embracing the tactics of “leaderless resistance” and of lone wolves carrying out acts of violence.

— (U//FOUO) Arrests in the past several years of radical militia members in Alabama, Arkansas,and Pennsylvania on firearms, explosives, and other related violations indicates the emergence of small, well-armed extremist groups in some rural areas.
ordnance that they planned to use in attacks on nearby military and federal
facilities and infrastructure targets.

— (U//FOUO) Rightwing extremist views bemoan the decline of U.S. stature and
have recently focused on themes such as the loss of U.S. manufacturing capability
to China and India, Russia’s control of energy resources and use of these to
pressure other countries, and China’s investment in U.S. real estate and
corporations as a part of subversion strategy.

(U) Disgruntled Military Veterans

(U//FOUO) DHS/I&A assesses that rightwing extremists will attempt to recruit and
radicalize returning veterans in order to exploit their skills and knowledge derived from
military training and combat. These skills and knowledge have the potential to boost the
capabilities of extremists—including lone wolves or small terrorist cells—to carry out
violence. The willingness of a small percentage of military personnel to join extremist
groups during the 1990s because they were disgruntled, disillusioned, or suffering from
the psychological effects of war is being replicated today.

— (U) After Operation Desert Shield/Storm in 1990-1991, some returning military
veterans—including Timothy McVeigh—joined or associated with rightwing
extremist groups.

— (U) A prominent civil rights organization reported in 2006 that “large numbers
of potentially violent neo-Nazis, skinheads, and other white supremacists are now
learning the art of warfare in the [U.S.] armed forces.”

— (U//LES) The FBI noted in a 2008 report on the white supremacist movement
that some returning military veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have
joined extremist groups.
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Page 8 of 9

(U) Outlook
(U//FOUO) DHS/I&A assesses that the combination of environmental factors that echo
the 1990s, including heightened interest in legislation for tighter firearms restrictions and
returning military veterans, as well as several new trends, including an uncertain
economy and a perceived rising influence of other countries, may be invigorating
rightwing extremist activity, specifically the white supremacist and militia movements.
To the extent that these factors persist, rightwing extremism is likely to grow in strength.
(U//FOUO) Unlike the earlier period, the advent of the Internet and other informationage
technologies since the 1990s has given domestic extremists greater access to
information related to bomb-making, weapons training, and tactics, as well as targeting of
individuals, organizations, and facilities, potentially making extremist individuals and
groups more dangerous and the consequences of their violence more severe. New
technologies also permit domestic extremists to send and receive encrypted
communications and to network with other extremists throughout the country and abroad,
making it much more difficult for law enforcement to deter, prevent, or preempt a violent
extremist attack.

(U//FOUO) A number of law enforcement actions and external factors were effective in
limiting the militia movement during the 1990s and could be utilized in today’s climate.

— (U//FOUO) Following the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah federal
building in Oklahoma City, the militia movement declined in total membership
and in the number of organized groups because many members distanced
themselves from the movement as a result of the intense scrutiny militias received
after the bombing.

— (U//FOUO) Militia membership continued to decline after the turn of the
millennium as a result of law enforcement disruptions of multiple terrorist plots
linked to violent rightwing extremists, new legislation banning paramilitary
training, and militia frustration that the “revolution” never materialized.

— (U//FOUO) Although the U.S. economy experienced a significant recovery and
many perceived a concomitant rise in U.S. standing in the world, white
supremacist groups continued to experience slight growth.

(U//FOUO) DHS/I&A will be working with its state and local partners over the next
several months to ascertain with greater regional specificity the rise in rightwing
extremist activity in the United States, with a particular emphasis on the political,
economic, and social factors that drive rightwing extremist radicalization.
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Page 9 of 9

Written by polemicscat

April 16, 2009 at 10:29 am

Lest We Forget the Origins of “Toxic Assets”

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Ten years ago this article in the New York Times described what was then developing in Fannie Mae practices that led to the mortgage catastrophe we have today.  The article includes the following warning:

“From the perspective of many people, including me, this is another thrift industry growing up around us,” said Peter Wallison a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. “If they fail, the government will have to step up and bail them out the way it stepped up and bailed out the thrift industry.”

Fannie Mae Eases Credit To Aid Mortgage Lending

By STEVEN A. HOLMES
Tuesday, September 30, 1999

In a move that could help increase home ownership rates among minorities and low-income consumers, the Fannie Mae Corporation is easing the credit requirements on loans that it will purchase from banks and other lenders.

The action, which will begin as a pilot program involving 24 banks in 15 markets — including the New York metropolitan region — will encourage those banks to extend home mortgages to individuals whose credit is generally not good enough to qualify for conventional loans. Fannie Mae officials say they hope to make it a nationwide program by next spring.

Fannie Mae, the nation’s biggest underwriter of home mortgages, has been under increasing pressure from the Clinton Administration to expand mortgage loans among low and moderate income people and felt pressure from stock holders to maintain its phenomenal growth in profits.

In addition, banks, thrift institutions and mortgage companies have been pressing Fannie Mae to help them make more loans to so-called subprime borrowers. These borrowers whose incomes, credit ratings and savings are not good enough to qualify for conventional loans, can only get loans from finance companies that charge much higher interest rates — anywhere from three to four percentage points higher than conventional loans.

“Fannie Mae has expanded home ownership for millions of families in the 1990’s by reducing down payment requirements,” said Franklin D. Raines, Fannie Mae’s chairman and chief executive officer. “Yet there remain too many borrowers whose credit is just a notch below what our underwriting has required who have been relegated to paying significantly higher mortgage rates in the so-called subprime market.”

Demographic information on these borrowers is sketchy. But at least one study indicates that 18 percent of the loans in the subprime market went to black borrowers, compared to 5 per cent of loans in the conventional loan market.

In moving, even tentatively, into this new area of lending, Fannie Mae is taking on significantly more risk, which may not pose any difficulties during flush economic times. But the government-subsidized corporation may run into trouble in an economic downturn, prompting a government rescue similar to that of the savings and loan industry in the 1980’s.

“From the perspective of many people, including me, this is another thrift industry growing up around us,” said Peter Wallison a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. “If they fail, the government will have to step up and bail them out the way it stepped up and bailed out the thrift industry.”

Under Fannie Mae’s pilot program, consumers who qualify can secure a mortgage with an interest rate one percentage point above that of a conventional, 30-year fixed rate mortgage of less than $240,000 — a rate that currently averages about 7.76 per cent. If the borrower makes his or her monthly payments on time for two years, the one percentage point premium is dropped.

Fannie Mae, the nation’s biggest underwriter of home mortgages, does not lend money directly to consumers. Instead, it purchases loans that banks make on what is called the secondary market. By expanding the type of loans that it will buy, Fannie Mae is hoping to spur banks to make more loans to people with less-than-stellar credit ratings.
Fannie Mae officials stress that the new mortgages will be extended to all potential borrowers who can qualify for a mortgage. But they add that the move is intended in part to increase the number of minority and low income home owners who tend to have worse credit ratings than non-Hispanic whites.

Home ownership has, in fact, exploded among minorities during the economic boom of the 1990’s. The number of mortgages extended to Hispanic applicants jumped by 87.2 per cent from 1993 to 1998, according to Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. During that same period the number of African Americans who got mortgages to buy a home increased by 71.9 per cent and the number of Asian Americans by 46.3 per cent.
In contrast, the number of non-Hispanic whites who received loans for homes increased by 31.2 per cent.

Despite these gains, home ownership rates for minorities continue to lag behind non-Hispanic whites, in part because blacks and Hispanics in particular tend to have on average worse credit ratings.

In July, the Department of Housing and Urban Development proposed that by the year 2001, 50 percent of Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s portfolio be made up of loans to low and moderate-income borrowers. Last year, 44 percent of the loans Fannie Mae purchased were from these groups.

The change in policy also comes at the same time that HUD is investigating allegations of racial discrimination in the automated underwriting systems used by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to determine the credit-worthiness of credit applicants.

Written by polemicscat

March 23, 2009 at 10:15 am