Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | April 6, 2014

Gee, a whole brigade? ‘Beefing up’ Europe

New post at Liberty Unyielding.  Enjoy!

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | April 2, 2014

Change coming to TOC

Eagle light 2Treasured readers, it is with tremendous regret that I announce a suspension of posting here at TOC.  The blogging won’t stop, but there’s a formatting problem, introduced by a recent change in the WordPress software, which is making it all but impossible for me to post items here.  I haven’t been able to fully gauge how hard the squirrels are running in the background at WordPress to do something about this.  But for now, there’s just too much work involved in posting at TOC.  I literally have to go through and reformat everything in a post, from italics and bold to hyperlinks and font. Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | March 24, 2014

Team Obama’s obsession: A “peace process” that’s past its shelf life

It’s time to just say it. The obsession of Barack Obama and John Kerry with forcing along a discredited and unproductive “peace process” involving the Palestinian Arabs and Israel is weird – even creepy.

Notice I didn’t say “peace process between the Palestinian Arabs and Israel.” There’s nothing “between” about it. At this point, the Obama-Kerry show seems to involve the Palestinian Arabs and Israel only tangentially. All the action is in Washington, D.C., and it’s all one-sided.

When we left our drama last week, Mahmoud Abbas had just delivered “three ‘no’s’” to the White House on this freighted topic: no recognition of Israel as a Jewish state; no relinquishment of a so-called “right of return”; and no commitment to honoring a pact with Israel as an “end of conflict” between the two.

Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | March 22, 2014

RNC commercials: Do they resonate with anyone?

RNC commercials are dumb because Republicans are awful.  That’s the basic thesis of Salon’s Alex Pareene.  He doesn’t think the standard-issue millennial mouthing GOP platitudes (see videos below) is all that bad, but he’s certain that the actual, no-kidding Republicans out there are snaggle-toothed gay-bashers and other Dead White European Males who hate Diversity, think Cuddly Puppies are something to shoot at, and wouldn’t know Millennial Chic if they found it dead in their ditty bag (except, of course, that Pareene himself would have no idea what a ditty bag is, and is darn proud of it).

So RNC commercials must be silly and/or deceptive or something. Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | March 21, 2014

Surgeon General-gate and the double standard for mixing health, guns, and politics

The New England Journal of Medicine has come out in high dudgeon over the vocal opposition of gun-rights activists to Obama’s surgeon general nominee, Dr. Vivek Hallegere Murthy.  Howard Portnoy highlighted earlier this month Dr. Murthy’s belief that doctors should interrogate patients on whether they have guns in the home.  As Howard pointed out, the provisions of Obamacare mean that the results of such questioning would be entered into the universal health-care database to which government officials would have access.  The NRA naturally objects.

The editorial at NEJM thunders: Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | March 19, 2014

Maldives sighting: A piece of the MH370 puzzle?


Kuda Huvadhoo, Dhaalu Atoll, Maldives.  If you're going to be startled by a low-flying jumbo jet, it might as well be here.

Kuda Huvadhoo, Dhaalu Atoll, Maldives. If you’re going to be startled by a low-flying jumbo jet, it might as well be here.

Interestingly, the sighting of an unidentified jumbo jet in the Maldives on 8 March, just after 6:00 AM, doesn’t conflict with any other known information about the missing Malaysian Air 777.

So that’s a point worth considering.  Before going further, I should mention that I don’t think the aircraft stopped Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | March 18, 2014

Navy SEALs take over hijacked tanker in Mediterranean


The new face of smuggling? (Photo: Reuters/Esam Omran Al-Fetori)

The new face of smuggling? (Photo: Reuters/Esam Omran Al-Fetori)

Earlier in March, a shadowy oil tanker, suddenly bearing the name Morning Glory, showed up in Es-Sider, Libya with a plan to load oil from terminals held by Libyan rebels.

Back in January, forces of the Libyan government fired on a tanker as it attempted to enter the rebel-held port, reportedly to load another cargo of oil.  The tanker, Baku, Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | March 16, 2014

Left grossly misleads on Julie Boonstra Obamacare story

Julie Boonstra is the Michigan leukemia patient who recorded a commercial for Americans for Prosperity (AFP) earlier this year, describing the disruption to her treatment when she lost her health insurance because of Obamacare.  [Interesting update: as of this writing, at 2:30 PM PDT on 16 March, the AFP website is unavailable.  Here is the error page that comes up when you try to access it.]

If Boonstra made a mistake, it was thinking that she could assert this, without revealing every detail of her insurance problems, and not come under vicious attack from the media, Harry Reid, and even from a Michigan congressman, Democrat Gary Peters.  She wasn’t intensively detailed and explicit about the problems she has faced.  And the media, along with Democratic politicians, have taken that as an opportunity to call her a liar, Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | March 16, 2014

Asian mysteries: MH370 and the Iranian naval flotilla




We appear to have ourselves a bona fide mystery.  If anyone in authority knows what happened to the Malaysian Air 777 that took off on 8 March headed for China, he’s not talking.  The most recent revelations, as readers no doubt know, suggest that the plane continued flying for about 7 hours after the last official contact from the cockpit.

The UK Mirror produced a graphic depicting the 634 airfields where Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | March 14, 2014

Peace in our time: ‘Game of carriers’ in Eastern Med

Vladimir Putin’s Russia has moved to clamp down on Ukraine in advance of the laughably rigged “referendum” scheduled for 16 March, when Crimeans will vote on which way to secede from Ukraine: either as an “independent” state or through annexation by Russia.  Crimeans who want to remain part of Ukraine are out of luck.

The battle for Crimea may be preordained; the battle for Ukraine underway.  There are also indications of a larger battle shaping up in the region, as the aircraft carriers of Russia and the United States perform an elaborate minuet in the Eastern Mediterranean.  If you weren’t convinced that the Russian move on Ukraine would rapidly destabilize the region, consider what has been going on in the last week west of Cyprus. Read More…

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