Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | August 19, 2015

Fake, P.C. #NativeHistory ‘map porn’ storms Facebook

Imaginary map scratches bias itch. (Map: ScientiaOmniaVincit via Reddit and Facebook)

Imaginary map scratches bias itch. (Map: ScientiaOmniaVincit via Reddit and Facebook)

If you weren’t sure America’s schools are turning out a whole lot of people of, shall we say, uneducated potential – well, dither no more.  Certainty can be yours.

A fantasy map of North America, posted in a Reddit forum on 6 August, has taken Facebook by storm – and with it, the impressionable minds of hundreds of thousands of Facebook members.

The original map was an exercise in projecting what North America might look like in 2015 if there had been no colonization by Europeans.  As the comments at Reddit indicate, the original map made quite a number of, um, uneducated errors.  But the important point for now is that the map never purported to reflect any kind of historical reality (and it didn’t).  It was an essay in alternative-history imagination.

That didn’t stop Facebook peeps from seizing on the map and sending it viral, with comments like these: Read More…

(Image via

(Image via

There are several weird elements in the missile defense drama suddenly being played out in Turkey.  Alert readers won’t be surprised that two of those weird elements are Russia and Iran.

Seemingly out of the blue, Germany announced this past weekend that the German contingent of two Patriot missile batteries, deployed to Turkey as a defensive measure in January 2013 – against the threat of Syrian Scuds – would be withdrawn ahead of schedule.

Within hours, the U.S. had made the same announcement about the American Patriot missiles that were deployed to Turkey at the same time.  The German and American contingents represent four of the five NATO Patriot batteries now in Turkey (the fifth is from Spain).  The four units will be gone by the end of 2015. Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | August 16, 2015

Pravda has uproarious ‘evidence’ CIA shot down MH17 in Ukraine

Get SmartThis definitely rivals the awe-inspiring oeuvre of such past masters as Lord Haw-Haw and Tokyo Rose.

It’s not exactly in the same genre, of course.  It’s more like a live snippet from a sort of Protocols of the Elders of Langley.  Komsomolskaya Pravda (“Young People’s Truth”) has perpetrated a cheesy deception: purportedly an audio recording of CIA agents talking to each other about their preparations to shoot down Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine.

As Mary Chastain indicates at Breitbart London, it’s a thigh-slapper.  The hilarity builds slowly as we hear two “Davids” — a “Hamilton” and a “Stern” — exchange the most stilted, overscripted conversations since Thomas Edison first recorded factory workers reading nursery rhymes.  Both “Davids” have funny (peculiar) accents, one British-sounding, the other with American overtones, but oddly plummy consonants on the margins.  It’s as if the K. Pravda production team for this moronic audio thinks American spies — or any other Americans, for that matter — actually sound like the anchors on Russia Today’s English-language news channel. Read More…

Obama MunichThere has been a persistent thread of reporting in Western media about secret contacts between the Obama administration and the Iranian regime, going back for years before the formal P5+1 negotiations that opened in 2013.

But there hasn’t been much explicit information on the content discussed in the secret meetings.  If the statements made in passages translated by MEMRI are valid – excerpts from speeches and Iranian media interviews with top officials – the reason for that is obvious.  According to the Iranians quoted, the Obama administration planned from the outset to give away the major bargaining points.

MEMRI says a full translation has yet to be completed, so we must wait on that for a more extended discussion.  But here are some highlights Read More…

Turkish tank patrols the border near Suruc.  (Image: AP via EKurd)

Turkish tank patrols the border near Suruc. (Image: AP via EKurd)

What lies beyond surreal?  Whatever it is, America is about to probe its depths, unless something intervenes to prevent the implementation of a U.S.-Turkish accord that would allow American forces to use Turkish air bases for strikes in Syria.

The U.S. has for months been seeking permission to use Turkey’s Incirlik air base in the campaign against Islamic State.  Incirlik is a Cold War-era base from which U.S. air forces have operated for years.  But Turkey has been selective about its use in the post-1991 period (prohibiting American use, notoriously, for the 2003 invasion of Iraq).

After the terrorist attack on the border town of Suruc, Turkey on 20 July – linked to Islamic State – Obama and Erdogan reportedly agreed in a phone call to bring Turkey into the campaign against ISIS, and begin operating American military aircraft in that fight from Turkish bases. Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | July 19, 2015

After Chattanooga: Another armed man shows up outside a recruiting center

Authorities were investigating an "active shooter incident" late Thursday morning at the Naval Reserve Center in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Fire Chief Randy Jackson said.  (Image via Liberty Unyielding)

Authorities were investigating an “active shooter incident” late Thursday morning at the Naval Reserve Center in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Fire Chief Randy Jackson said. (Image via Liberty Unyielding)

Liberty Unyielding’s Julie reported on Saturday that the death toll had gotten worse in the terror attack by Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez on Navy facilities in Chattanooga.  In addition to the four Marines who died on Thursday, Navy Petty Officer Second Class Randall Smith succumbed to his injuries from the attack in the pre-dawn hours on Saturday morning.

They’re pretty jittery around the military recruiting center where Abdulazeez perpetrated so much carnage.  They’re jittery at military facilities across the country, especially recruiting centers that are located in easily accessible places like strip malls.  A handful of governors have already authorized their National Guard forces to arm those on active duty, which will affect some recruiting offices, although not the recruiters for the federal military departments. Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | July 19, 2015

Trump jumps shark with insane comment about McCain’s military service

(Image via

(Image via

Gaahhhh.  Feh.  OMG.  No he didn’t.

But…yes, unfortunately — inevitably? — he did.

Trump managed to implode faster than, well, something that implodes really fast.  Come up with your own analogies.  (Post them in the comments section and we’ll have a contest.)

After riding the crest of a wave for three weeks, speaking for Mr. and Mrs. Joe America on the subject of out-of-hand illegal immigration, Trump crashed and burned in Iowa, lobbing a few seconds’ worth of campaign-ending trash talk at John McCain. Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | July 15, 2015

Complete unraveling: Top 5 reasons why the non-deal agreement with Iran is bad

Obama MunichThese are the top five other than the fact that it’s not a deal; it’s a surrender.  The West has agreed to lift the sanctions on Iran.  Iran has not agreed to give up anything she needs to acquire a bomb, or cease any of her aggressive behavior (e.g., arming and training Hezbollah and Hamas, fighting wars in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen).  Not one of these things – not one – is a measure of performance Iran will actually have to demonstrate to get the sanctions lifted.

1. The agreement paves Iran’s path to the bomb. The only question about Iran and the bomb now is when Iran will get it. If Iran adheres to the terms of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreement (link to full text here), she will retain the means, and improve the expertise, to build nuclear weapons throughout the next 10 years.  She would wait for that 10 years to pass, however, before enriching enough uranium to test a warhead and stockpile weapons. Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | July 11, 2015

FBI: Background check ‘flaw’ let Dylann Roof buy a gun

Roof 3Perhaps it’s technically the New York Times that’s saying a “flaw” is what allowed Roof, the Charleston church killer, to buy a gun.  “Flaw” is the word used in the NYT headline.  The actual communication from the FBI is summarized this way in the text:

A loophole in the system and an error by the F.B.I. allowed the man, Dylann Roof, to buy the .45-caliber handgun despite having previously admitted to drug possession, officials said.

The “error” by the FBI stands up to scrutiny as an actual error.  The “loophole” in the background check system is another story.  Here’s the extended summary from NYT: Read More…

Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | July 10, 2015

Memphis and the inconvenient dead: We’re all snarling jihadis now

Graves of WWII soldiers in Libya, desecrated by jihadis. (Image via euronews)

Graves of WWII soldiers in Libya, desecrated by jihadis. (Image via euronews)

Congratulations to the Memphis City Council.  As Howard Portnoy reported, Memphis’s finest voted this week to dig up the remains of Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest – and his wife – from their resting place beneath Forrest’s statue in a Memphis park.

It’s politically incorrect, according to the council, for the Forrests’ bones to repose there any longer.

“It is no longer politically correct to glorify someone who was a slave trader, someone who was a racist on public property,” said City Council member Myron Lowery.

So now our own, all-American Memphis, Tennessee is just like the jihadi animals who’ve been attacking graves around the Middle East, as they slash and burn their way through the post-Arab Spring landscape. Read More…

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