Beyond the Cusp

November 6, 2017

Immigration Roulette

 

Let us take a moment to express our shared grief over the mass shooting in Texas. Quoting directly from the Los Angeles Times, their report stated the following. “…weekly song and prayer service at First Baptist Church Sunday when a man clad in black, wearing a tactical vest and carrying an AR-15-style assault rifle, pulled into the parking lot, got out and opened fire.” We would like to amend this as he had a rifle which is shaped almost exactly like an M-16, which is an assault rifle, but differs in that the selector switch only has two positions, “fire” and “safe” and does not have either the “Auto” or “Three Round Burst” selections the M-16 true assault rifle may have. That makes this simply a single shot for each pull of the trigger mean-looking and elaborate hunting rifle which is less accurate and has a lower bullet velocity than the regular .223 cal. hunting rifle. “Soon the man made his way inside, and kept shooting, and shooting, and shooting.” “As the gunman exited the church, a neighbor with a gun opened fire on him, forcing the attacker to drop his weapon and flee in his SUV. The neighbor and another bystander in a truck followed in hot pursuit until the gunman drove off the side of the road, mortally wounded — perhaps by one of the neighbor’s bullets, or perhaps by his own.” “Kelley was in the U.S. Air Force from 2010 to 2014 but left with a “bad conduct” discharge and was sentenced to 12 months’ confinement after he was convicted of assaulting his wife and their child, according to an Air Force representative.” This was probably not a terror attack and this man was not an immigrant, he was simply a home-grown lunatic who bought his gun legally as mental health physicians are hard pressed to not list their clients as insane as this would make their lives even more stressful. This time the Air Force made a mistake and should have listed this man as needing mental health guidance and surveillance and maybe the system might have worked and he would not have had access to firearms. Now we present our intended article and our prayers for the people in Texas and elsewhere touched by this tragedy.

 

The long-standing program carrying the name of “Diversity Visa Lottery” has received quite a deal of inspection, conjecture, divination, suspicion, postulation, inquiry and all other forms of opinionizing over the past week or so as a result of the Manhattan terror attack murdering eight people in a well protected bicycle lane. There was a tree lined median a few yards wide and two curbs between the bidirectional bicycle lane and the street (see below). An Islamic State sworn follower and terrorist from Uzbekistan, Sayfullo Saipov, entered the United States on one of those Diversity Visa Lottery visas which are distributed, just as advertised, by lottery with less than adequate vetting. This Diversity Visa Lottery Program is designed to bring immigrants into the United States from nations where historically there has been lower numbers of immigrants. Translated into English, this means that it is designed to bring immigrants from the MENA nations (Middle East and North Africa) which are largely Arab Muslim nations. These are also the nations from where a higher than average number of terrorist attacks originate.

 

Street Separated by Tree-Lined Median from Bicycle Lane

Street Separated by Tree-Lined Median from Bicycle Lane

 

In Israel, the IDF and intelligence forces have an understanding from which towns and camps the greatest number of terrorists originate. They even know which families from which terrorists have come from, often more than one, and also who are the people who order and execute these horrific attacks. The problem is the vast majority of those planning and training on through execution of terror attacks reside within the areas under complete Palestinian Arab control of either Hamas or Islamic Jihad in Gaza and the Palestinian Authority in Area A of Judea and Samaria of the disputed areas. These areas are beyond the legal authority of all Israeli forces who may only enter to arrest suspects with the permission of Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority. These people are protected as they operate with the blessings and often as members of the Palestinian Authority. One could conclude that these individuals have a form of immunity. Israel still places their checkpoints, both permanent and theoretically random checkpoints, in such places such that the areas from where there is a greater than average terrorist attacks originate. This and the wall, which was placed just as carefully, has reduced the number of terrorist bombings, shooting and other attacks and have been reduced by such an extent that one is probably almost as likely to be a victim of a terror attack in Paris. So, what is the potential safety of offering entry visas to potential immigrants from the Islamic world by lottery?

 

Fortunately, this comes down to mathematics, an area we have sufficient background to do with some degree of ability. We will use the figure often bandied about by the media that merely ten percent of Muslims from the MENA region who immigrate are likely to be terrorists. We will be kind despite our suspicions that the actual percentage is considerably higher. Now the Diversity Visa Lottery Program in its current version was signed into law in 1990 by George H. W. Bush (Bush I). This means that it has been in effect for at least sixteen years. We will average down to fifteen for simplicity sake. The law allows fifty-thousand immigrants in each year. The math from here becomes very simple, fifteen years of fifty-thousand immigrants each year has permitted seven-hundred-fifty-thousand immigrants and if ten percent could potentially be terrorists, that means that the Visa Lottery Program very probably has allowed seventy-five-thousand terrorists into the United States and will add an additional five-thousand terrorists every additional year it continues with its current lack of vetting and randomly handing out visas to anyone who applies. There are other considerations which we are overlooking such as the potential that al-Qaeda, Islamic State, Hezballah and other terrorist groups would not see this program as their personal invitation to easily infiltrate the United States and inundate the State Department personnel with their terrorists applying for an entry visa under the Visa Lottery Program. So, the seventy-five-thousand terrorists should be taken as a low-ball figure.

 

This program has quite probably done exactly what the administration has feared and was the reasoning behind President Trump’s temporary immigration restrictions from the very nations included as participants in the Visa Lottery Program until more severe vetting was put into place. Unfortunately, the administration appeared to be in desperate need of a lawyer or at least somebody with knowledge of the English language who could have made the wording of the travel restrictions somewhat less offensive and perhaps exacting enough to pass muster. Then again, that may never have been possible for the leftist judges in Maryland and Hawaii when one thinks of it. Perhaps that might be a good place to look next, the politics, as this is our area over which we usually write. It was rather peculiar that Senator Schumer, always one of the first to rush to the microphones after every shooting to demand “tougher gun control” came out with this statement after the Manhattan terror attack, “I guess it’s not too soon to politicize a tragedy. President Trump, instead of politicizing and dividing America, which he always seems to do at times of national tragedy, should be focusing on the real solution — anti-terrorism funding — which he proposed cutting in his most recent budget.” I guess his experience politicizing every national firearm event makes his an expert at recognizing such acts.

 

Now for the shocker, we agree, this politicizing of every tragedy by one side or the other is not helpful and might even be further radicalizing the politics of both sides. Political extremism has become one of the bigger problems in the United States which can be traced to the political class as much as the media. One must feel for those moderates who have been completely erased from the political debate. Imagine the discussion in which there are three Trump true supporters, three ardent Hillary Clinton supporters and as many people who were really stressed and conflicted over which candidate to give their support. We would bet that the entire debate discussing what is needed in the United States would consist of six people, the two extremes, screaming back and forth often using choice language while the moderate people who would likely have the best hopes for the future cowering from the extremist who have completely abducted all the air from the political room. We really feel for the moderate Americans, assuming that any actually exist since the election. Everything we have witnessed has indicated that somebody killed the moderate people who believed in reasoned debate and working together to find solutions to the problems. Imagine if the Congress and the President worked together and instead of immediately throwing the other side to the wolves after every event. If there is a mass-shooting the Democrat and Republican Progressives all run screaming that all guns must be made illegal, or usually they demand that assault rifles be banned even when the weapons used were all handguns. When there is a terror attack, the other side demands that every immigrant be inspected and vetted to the nth degree. There are other polarizing subjects and almost every political discussion is how it is necessary that Washington find the solution.

 

Well, being some of the people who have their own extreme position, we are Jeffersonian Liberals, which means we support the originalist interpretations of the Constitution; we believe that demanding that Washington fix every problem is the problem. We believe that it is time for the States to take back their powers which Washington has stolen. The first step would be to abolish the Seventeenth Amendment (Amendment XVII), take back the right of the States to determine how their Senators are chosen, and recommend that this power be returned to the State governments to make that choice. The original intent of the Constitution was for the House of Representatives to be the people’s house representing the will of the people and the Senate to be the State’s house representing the States and protecting the individual states and their rights from being infringed by the Federal Government. If one looks back over the history of the United States, the debt and sheer number of regulations and actual sheer oppression accelerated significantly after the ratification of the Seventeenth Amendment. That act nullified the voice of the States allowing the Congress to mandate edicts to the States and take power from the individual states and vest in Washington making everything instead of a problem each state could address for themselves into a Federal problem. That was the death knell for State’s rights and the end of the Republic making the United States just another Democracy on its way to bankruptcy and eventually to some form of tyranny be it a fascist dictator or a communist all-powerful central government. That should be sufficient pontificating for today, thank you for reading.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

November 2, 2017

Manhattan Terror and More

 

The terrorist attack in Manhattan was horrific and abhorrent in every manner. The terrorist was required to jump over five yards or more and avoid hitting the trees parked along the median separating the bicycle lanes from the traffic lanes. Then he accelerated to run down approximately twenty cyclists and murdering eight of those he struck. The terrorist has been identified as 29-year-old Sayfullo Saipov. Terrorist, please excuse our jumping to conclusions as he has not been convicted, just caught in the act, shot, hospitalized and hopefully at least arraigned, Sayfullo Saipov entered United States through Diversity Visa Program. He came to the United States seven years ago from Uzbekistan carrying a Diversity Visa, which has been, importantly, a part of President Trump’s proposed revisions for his “extreme vetting” program.

 

Manhattan Terrorist Sayfullo Saipov Murderer of Eight Cyclists

Manhattan Terrorist Sayfullo Saipov
Murderer of Eight Cyclists

 

President Trump sounded less than amused as he Tweeted, “The terrorist came into our country through what is called the ‘Diversity Visa Lottery Program,’ a Chuck Schumer beauty. I want merit based. We are fighting hard for Merit Based immigration, no more Democrat Lottery Systems. We must get MUCH tougher (and smarter).”

 

President Trump Tweeted, “‘Diversity Visa Lottery Program,’ a Chuck Schumer beauty”

President Trump Tweeted,
“‘Diversity Visa Lottery Program,’ a Chuck Schumer beauty”

 

The Diversity Visa Program was a State Department wonder program, as in it makes one wonder who came up with such a lame-brained idea, whereby fifty-thousand immigrant visas were made available annually and, according to the United States Citizen and Immigration Services website, applicants must prove they have a clean criminal record, have a high school diploma or its equivalent, or have at least two years of work experience within the past five years in order to qualify. One can only wonder how difficult it might be to qualify with such strict restrictions plus one wonders how were these qualifications to be verified, word of honor, scouts honor, note from your mother, or slips of paper from nations where such pieces of paper are easily attained by just about anybody and easily forged by any organization or determined individual. The program was passed through the Congress as a fine piece of progressive legislation and signed dutifully by a progressive President George H.W. Bush in 1990. These programs have been in action since the 1970’s and continued and bolstered by Democrats and Republicans alike with terrorist murderer Sayfullo Saipov having arrived in 2010. Both parties are to blame for these contemptable programs which undermine the safety of American citizens.

 

 
In the end, terrorist murderer Sayfullo Saipov rammed his rental truck (see below) into a school bus probably hoping to murder any children who may have been aboard. We believe the school bus was empty, and we are thankful of this, but murdering children is another cowardly preference these new breed of terrorists target. The other fortunate thing other than the school bus (see below) being empty was that it also brought the murderous rampage to a quick and decisive end. Still, at this point, terrorist murderer Sayfullo Saipov stepped out of his totaled truck apparently holding firearms. It turns out that his guns were toys, replicas incapable of hurting anybody and apparently were there for him to brandish in hopes of being sent to his seventy-two virgins (or raisins depending on the translation).

 

Crashed Rental Truck

Crashed Rental Truck

 

School Bus which Stopped Attack

School Bus which Stopped Attack

 

Now we will have a little good news before closing. In Israel, the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) and intelligence agencies discovered a new terror tunnel leading into Israel. The IDF believed the tunnel to be unoccupied at the time of its destruction, something the Israeli government has determined to be the best actions to use to avoid appearing unnecessarily unkind. What kind of world are we residing in when a national government has to be concerned as to whether or not terrorists are in a tunnel designed for the murder of its citizens before destroying it, but it gets even more embarrassing. There were some twenty terrorists working away in the tunnel preparing for who knows what when it was destroyed. Gaza medical authorities from deep within Hamastan reported that seven of the terrorists died resulting from the destruction of the terrorist attack tunnel burrowed underneath the Israel Hamastan (Gaza) border. Mahmoud Abbas came out to meet reporters and declare that Israel was guilty of murdering the heart of terrorism, if only that were true. Hamas denounced the needless destruction of their tunnel and the taking of the lives of seven of their finest people. Then came the saddest part of this day, the Israeli government issued a statement apologizing for causing the death of the seven terrorists working in an attack tunnel which led from Gaza under the border into Israel from where terrorists would one day emerge to murder Israelis and destroy their homes and attempt to destroy the entirety of Israel. Yes, they apologized for killing terrorists readying an attack tunnel for the assault to murder Israelis. At least the terror tunnel is destroyed and terrorists met their end and I guess we will have to live with the apparent apology for killing terrorists in a terror tunnel.

 

We understand that Israel values lives, even terrorist lives, but given a choice between terrorist lives and the lives of Israeli civilians including children, we will take terrorist lives. It was proven that terrorist target children came that same day in Manhattan as the terror attack ramming came to an end when the terrorist targeted a school bus hoping it might have children aboard. Still, the loss of life can be mourned and respected without a formal apology for killing terrorists readying their attack tunnels for their deadly purpose. Seven terrorist died and their work in the tunnel has come to an end making, hopefully, many Israelis safer as a result and that is the good news. Every destroyed terror tunnel is, in and of itself, a blessing in its own way.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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