Friday, March 30, 2007

A show of unity to our ally across the pond


We pray for the families and friends of the 15 British soldiers held hostage and call for their swift release. We at the Kenig Konnection would like to affirm the ideals that bond our two closely-linked, democratic nations with a display of empathy and unity to our great ally during this tense time. Our prayers and support are also with Prime Minister Tony Blair, a strong and steadfast leader who understands the dangers of Islamic terrorism and has stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the United States in combating the these threats to democracy and peace around the world.

A simple sign of support for our closest ally in this fight for the preservation of freedom...

*flags courtesy of

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Bush Admin. has no backbone, Sebelius' scandals starting to unravel

The Bush administration has withdrawn the nomination of Sam Fox to be ambassador of Belgium, according to the AP. Sam Fox, if you remember, is a Missouri businessman, from the St. Louis area, who has been grilled this week in senate hearings by John Kerry because of his $50,000 donation to Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. Some Democrats wanted him to renounce the group and his support of them, but Fox courageously refused--and some Democrats were preparing to vote against him because of this. Well, now Bush has preemptively withdrawn the nomination, so there won't be any vote, even though Fox did have the support of Mo. Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill.

This follows a pattern of incredible timidness and incompetence radiating from the White House. They absolutely refuse to fight on behalf of their nominees (including their court nominees) and they don't defend their policies vigorously enough. When Tony Snow was asked if Gonzales was going to survive the current U.S. attorneys controversy, he responded "we hope so." What is that?! How about "of course, there was no wrongdoing and the administration has operated under the same rules for hiring and firing as previous administrations." But no...instead, the White House shows it's weak and lets the Democrats lie, whine, complain, without going on the offense. It's disturbing and frusterating. If the White House is not going to play hardball and fight back, then maybe they deserve what is being thrown at them.
Trying to be soft and conciliatory in politics is nothing more than a slow-bleed strategy that attracts sharks pursuing the smell of blood in the water.

We know our great governor Kathleen has been hard at work appointing political cronies to the state supreme court and various other commissions, but now a new scandal emerges. River Ridge developers, under a lease-purchase agreement with the state to build a new state park, bought property for $275,000 just 3 years ago and now, according to a recent state audit, the property is now appraised at over $700,000. And the developers and their companies donated more than $40,000 to Sebelius' campaign, including the current chairman of the KS Real Estate Commission (who donated to Sebelius) as well as two lawyers (who represented the governor) will be making a nice profit on their land. And don't forget this is taxpayer dollars that this development company will be awarded. And setting aside the obvious ethical improprieties, isn't it a conflict of interest to serve as chair of the KS Real Estate Commission
(a governor-appointed board) and be awarded a state contract? Am I missing something here?

Wichita Eagle Story

Friday, March 23, 2007

Moral Relativism run amok in Germany...

We all know the dangers of 'moral relativism' far too well--the philosophy that there are no moral absolutes (right or wrong) just shades of gray, and that morality differs from culture to culture, nation to nation. Hence, with a straight face, moral relativists can say that female mutilation is wrong in our culture but morally right in Zambia because of it's cultural traditions.

A large and growing Muslim population, coupled with an atmosphere of political correctness and fear of invoking any sense of national unity have led to a European continent that is slowly disintegrating before our eyes. We rolled our eyes when press freedom was actually debated because of the unrest over the Danish cartoons. We sighed when the German opera decided to cancel a play with references to Mohammed after fear of inciting Muslim extremists.
Well, now we should be shouting because Europe has reached the tipping point.

Just from the AP--A German judge cited the Quran when denying a a young woman a divorce who tearfully sobbed she was being abused by her husband.

The judge, a native, white European, is a prime example of the problem with Europe's elitist left and proud moral relativists. Judge Christa Datz-Winter rationalized the abuse by saying "both partners came from a "Moroccan cultural environment in which it is not uncommon for a man to exert a right of corporal punishment over his wife" and then she proceeded to cite a passage from the Quran that reads in part "men are in charge of women."

Now, most likely this woman judge herself is a modern, western feminist, but in her inherently insensitive and twisted ruling, she is trying to accomodate Islamic, Sharia law in Germany under the rationale that we must respect their culture, their beliefs no matter what. Oh, far be it for us to impose German law on them just because they live in Germany and may even be naturalized German citizens!

The woman's case is on appeal, and it looks like the judge will be disciplined. This is strikingly similar to what happened when Canada tried to appease its Muslim extremists by allowing Sharia law in place of Canadian civil law. The result was a backlash against the nation by Muslim women everywhere: when women started receiving harsh punishments and were denied divorces, Canada woke up from their mulicultural utopian slumber and realized that the practice was incompatible with Canadian law and western values.

This just proves that an emphasis on multiculturalism to the point of absurdity will only hurt the individuals it claims to help the most.

And this serves as a caveat to those Americans on the left and some members of our own U.S. Supreme Court: Still anxious about citing European law and using it as a basis for our own court decisions?

Monday, March 19, 2007

Blogs and websites of interest...

There's a new, cutting-edge, hard hitting Republican blog for Kansas politicos.
Stay Red Kansas has only been active for a month, but it is already generating buzz
about who could possibly run the site and the amount of inside info the author has on
state politics and KS' federal officials. Good site to bookmark and check out:

Also, a new daily tabloid called the Politico rolled out from the presses this year in DC, and this is the first newspaper to be devoted ENTIRELY to politics--DC, state, and local. For those of you who don't make regular trips to our nation's capital, check out the online version full of content--columns, editorials, news, and blogs:

Myspace has set up a special politics channel to cover the main presidential candidates--5 dems and 5 GOPers. You can read their profiles, chat with them live if they're signed on, and message them with your support (and money)!

I've added these links to my blog listings in the right-hand column. The blog entries are listed by local relevance, with the local Kansas/Missouri blogs appearing first and blogs that cover national politics appearing last.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

End of DC Gun Ban, Edwards' hypocrisy

By 2-1, an appeals court has overturned the District of Columbia's long-standing ban on guns. Basically, D.C. had the harshest gun control law in the nation--as a resident, you can't own a handgun or semiautomatic weapon, muchless carry one. You can only own a rifle if you keep it unloaded and have the barrel of the gun in a separate place of your house in the gun itself (huh?!). Since this law was enacted in 1977, gun violence has actually increased and law-abiding citizens of the District have been prevented from defending themselves and their families from people who buy guns illegally or just cross the line into Virginia or Maryland to buy a gun.

So finally DC residents will have their 2nd amendment rights back and wouldn't it be so ironic if the city's crime rates decreases in the year after the ban is lifted! Although, if you're in DC, don't rush out to buy your guns yet, the District's government is appealing...

New poster child John Edwards announces over the weekend that "Jesus would be appalled" at our selfishness as Americans for ignoring the plight of the poor and getting involved in a senseless war.

Now forget for a second that as a country, Americans give more to charity than any other nation on earth, and we give more of our wealth to the downtrodden in less developed nations around the world than any other nation. Hell, if it wasn't for the United States there would be no United Nations--we created the institution! If we withdrew our funding of the UN tomorrow, it would cease to exist--that's how much we contribute.

But what really gets me going is anyone (Republican or Democrat) who claims to speak for Jesus. Falwell, Pat Robertson on the right, and now we have Edwards on the left. Would Jesus be appalled that Edwards has two houses valued at over $10 million? How much does Edwards contribute to charity? Maybe he can turn his 28,200 square foot estate with 102 acres into a theme park and invite all the inner city kids to experience his life of luxury.

And would Jesus feel appalled to know that back in 2003, Edwards owed $11,000 in back property taxes for his plush Georgetown row house in DC? (see here). Is this the same Edwards who wants to raise taxes for everyone else, but fails to pay his own taxes on time? What would Jesus think about that? If I ever hear another politician claiming to speak for Jesus, I think I'll go insane...

Monday, March 05, 2007

Romney on Top in CPAC straw poll

The results of the CPAC straw poll, the most telling barometer of the opinions of Republican opinion makers from all 50 states ahead of the Iowa straw poll, are in. In a poll of 1,709 CPAC attendees the results for 2008 GOP Presidential Nominee are:

Romney 21%
Giuliani 17%
Brownback 15%
Gingrich 14%
McCain 12%

This was almost exactly as I predicted and it's clear that McCain paid a heavy price for not showing up to the conference and then "dissing" (in the words of the Wash. Times) the attendees of the conference. Last year, George Allen ranked first, followed by McCain, and then Giuliani. The methadology of the poll also breaks down favorability of the candidates issue-by-issue, with Romney followed by Giuliani leading the way on the issue of reducing the size and scope of the Federal government. On safety and Security, Giuliani leads, followed by Romney. The only aberration was on the issue of traditional values, where Brownback led with 29% followed by Romney with 22%. When first choices for President and VP are combined, Giuliani is the leader, followed by Romney. The CPAC attendees have historically chosen the winner of the their party's nomination, as in 2000 when Bush led Bauer and Elizabeth Dole when first choices of president and VP slots of CPAC attendees were combined.

Interestingly enough, 33% blamed '06 losses on either Bush's job performance or Congressional Republicans' performance, followed by 30% who blamed the war in Iraq. Even more telling was the ideology of attendees when asked to explain their positions. 50% chose limited goverment and individual freedom, with only 30% choosing traditional values (protecting marriage and the unborn) and 18% saying national security regardless of the costs and government expansion. I think conservatives are finding their moorings and looking to re-establish themselves. Many of these who did not rank traditional values first are socially conservative and strong on national security, but they believed that straying from their values of limited government and individual freedom, which were the enduring bonds that held together the coalition on the right for many years, led to the losses of '08. This may explain why Giuliani and Romney polled much better than Brownback, Tancredo, and Huckabee, for this precept is something that unites all divisions of the party, and I think the party activists are serious about winning the presidency, which is why traditional values and "big-government" security are now lower priorities than before.

Yet, the overall vote shows that many Republican activists are still uncertain, and the vote compilation shows a fractured and evenly-divided support among the candidates--no one candidate has a super majority. But if Giuliani can perform this well and come in second among a group that skews very far right and is composed of many more conservatives than moderates, this must be a welcome sign for the Giuliani camp, as well as the Romney camp to a lesser degree.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Special Report from Washington, D.C.

I'm happy to sign in from DC today, reporting from the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) the largest conservative gathering in the country (in fact, Pres. Reagan addressed the conference every year from 1973-1989). Don't let the name fool you: Attendees are conservatives, neocons, moderates, libertarians, and virtually anyone who considers themselves right-of-center. Speakers included VP Dick Cheney, Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, Sen. Arlen Specter, and Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchsion.

The GOP presidential candidates were also there, each gave a speech and sponsored numerous receptions, filling the DC hotel with their supporters ready to slap a sticker on you and hand you a piece of their literature.

Every GOP candidate showed up except one...John McCain. In fact, McCain not only refused an invitation, he then went behind the backs of the organizers and tried to schedule a private reception for CPAC attendees with the hotel management. Then, at the banquet on friday night, popular conservative radio show host Laura Ingraham informed guests that McCain's spokesman said that McCain did not believe that CPAC represented the conservative movement in general and the convention was mostly comprised of DC insiders and elites (those from DC, Maryland, and Virginia). Of course, this solicited loud "boos" from the audience and McCain made a huge mistake by not attending CPAC and then downgrading its significance.
Only 15 percent of attendees this year came from MD, DC, and VA, the other 85% came from 48 other states and 3 US territories. And CPAC had record attendence this year--nearly 6300 people, and this conference is the premier event for candidates ahead of the August Iowa straw poll and the early IA and NH caucuses and primaries.

Even Giuliani spoke before a large crowd and received a lot of applause. I hate to exaggerate, but even The Washington Post realized the significance of this misstep in it's front page article "McCain rejects CPAC Invite, '08 candidate 'dissed' right." This is a huge blow to McCain's aspirations, and as these influential opinion leaders make their way back to their home states, they will influence their friends and neighbors' perceptions, and this could be the beginning of the end of McCain's presidential bid.

Romney had the most enthusiastic and energetic supporters, and you could not even get into his reception if you tried. Giuliani had a lot of applause for his speech, but Romney received more rounds of applause and numerous standing ovations (esp. when he promised to gut McCain-Feingold). The excitement and energy is unseen, and it is clear that if I had to choose, Romney and Giuliani are the favorites among CPAC attendees. Brownback, Huckabee, Tancredo, and Gilmore gave great speeches (Brownback's speech was probably the best and most enlightening of his proposals and policies out of the three) but none of the 2nd-tier candidates managed to produce enough excitement. The CPAC straw poll is an important and cited indication of early core Republican conservative support for the major candidates and it is often cited by Time and Newsweek. It will be released tomorrow, and I will post the results, but I predict that Giuliani and Romney will be the top two picks for GOP president, in that order, with Brownback 3rd or 4th and McCain coming in last due to his stupid, misguided decision and insult at the attendees.