New from Prager University: Aznar on Europe, America and Israel

The latest from Prager University:

Do you want to know how Europeans think? Why not ask one of the most prominent Europeans in the world, former Spanish Prime Minister, Jose Maria Aznar? That’s what just we did. The conversation — his thoughts on Europe, America and Israel — is both fascinating and profound. 

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Yes, Let’s Emulate the UK on Healthcare

Another healthcare horror story from across the pond (hat tip to WISN):
Nurses casually stepped over a patient as he lay dying on a  hospital floor.
Peter Thompson, 41, was left in a corridor for ten hours before someone noticed he had passed away.
In a final act of indignity, hospital auxiliaries pulled his lifeless body across the floor in a manner his family described as like ‘dragging a dead animal’.
The scenes which shame the NHS were all captured on CCTV. Staff thought Mr Thompson was merely drunk and left him to ‘sleep it off’.
Yesterday a coroner condemned the death as ‘wholly preventable’.
An inquest heard that the father-of-one, who had consumed a cocktail of drink and drugs, could have been saved had he received emergency treatment.  
The hospital’s accident and emergency department was just 200 yards away.
As WISN’s Justin Earl rightly notes, “these hospitals, doctors, and caregivers are overwhelmed, underfunded, and understaffed.” But those things can’t fully explain a dead body left unattended in a hallway for ten hours. Indifference to, or willfull avoidance of, human suffering ultimately stems from a crisis of moral decency.

McCain’s Ace in the Hole

With Russia’s attack on Georgia and Barack Obama’s bumbling reaction, now is the time John McCain ought to be hammering the most powerful case for supporting him: in an increasingly dangerous world, America needs serious leadership instead of incompetence. McCain’s own reaction to the conflict is more coherent and substantive than Obama’s, and displays McCain’s knowledge of the issue, but unfortunately doesn’t offer a lot more than “we need to instantly mobilize people to talk about what we’re gonna do.”

If disgruntled conservatives are gonna be convinced to support McCain, it will have to be on foreign policy and national defense grounds. The good news is, he has one ace in the hole (if he realizes it):
the support of John Bolton, former US ambassador to the United Nations. Bolton has a clear view of both the threats facing America and the international community’s inability/unwillingness to deal with them, as well as a proven ability to speak plainly about them, without regard for Beltway hand-wringing. He’s earned the respect of the Right, the venom of the Left, and, if utilized by the campaign, could go a long way toward bringing the case for a strong, clear-eyed foreign policy to the American people in an accessible way.

But beyond that, I’d like to see McCain signal just how serious he is about a meaningful foreign policy change by pledging to put Bolton in a prominent post in his administration. More “realistic” (read: timid) conservatives and Republicans would probably advise against such a move, based on how much liberals would howl about it. I say let ‘em. Heck, they’re calling McCain a racist without anything to go on; what makes you think you can appease these people? Just do the right thing, and defend it with that “straight talk” we hear so much about from ol’ John.

Entschuldigung? *

Barack Obama thinks it’s embarrassing that more Americans don’t speak the language of the nations they visit. People have rightly noticed that this is another case of Obama looking down upon the common folks, but there’s another question we should ask him: if you ought to speak the local language when you merely visit a country, what about when you want to live there? Surely the good Senator would apply this principle to English here. Or not.

So as to show I won’t be embarrassing the Messiah anytime soon with insufficient multicultural credentials, I have a foreign-language message for him: Gehen Sie in der Hölle, Herr Obama.
* The title is German for “Excuse Me?” As for the message, take a wild guess.

The Happy Warrior at Hillsdale

Wisecracking, liberty-loving pundit extraordinaire Mark Steyn just gave an outstanding speech here at Hillsdale. The topic: Western capitulation in the face of Islamic browbeating—an issue with which he has firsthand expertise, and covers in greater depth in America Alone. I had the honor of meeting Mr. Steyn after the talk.

Quote of the Day

And our literature! – Oh, when will it breathe the spirit of our republican institutions? When will it be embued with the God-like aspiration of intellectual freedom – the elevating principle of equality? When will it assert its national independence, and speak the soul – the heart of the American people? Why cannot our literati comprehend the matchless sublimity of our position amongst the nations of the world – our high destiny – and cease bending the knee to foreign idolatry, false tastes, false doctrines, false principles? When will they be inspired by the magnificent scenery of our own world, imbibe the fresh enthusiasm of a new heaven and a new earth, and soar upon the expanded wings of truth and liberty? Is not nature as original – her truths as captivating – her aspects as various, as lovely, as grand – her Promethean fire as glowing in this, our Western hemisphere, as in that of the East? And above all, is not our private life as morally beautiful and good – is not our public life as politically right, as indicative of the brightest prospects of humanity, and therefore as inspiring of the highest conceptions? Why, then, do our authors aim at no higher degree of merit, than a successful imitation of English writers of celebrity?
John L. O’Sullivan, November 1839

Sarkozy: Good for France, Bad for Leno & Conan

You know there’s something wrong with America’s Republican leadership when, at least on one issue, France starts to sound pretty good by comparison:

Brice Hortefeux heads the Ministry of Immigration and National Identity — newly created by President Nicolas Sarkozy to manage the inflow of immigrants and protect French values and cohesion.

“We have to put aside massive legalization. It doesn’t work and it penalizes, even immigrants,” Hortefeux said on Europe 1 radio. Policy, he added, would be guided by “firmness and humanism” with “lots of pragmatism.”

He said he planned to adhere to the policy of deporting illegal immigrants from France. The number of deportees was expected to reach some 25,000 this year, and Hortefeux said he would ensure that figure was reached.

The conservative Sarkozy, elected president May 6, had reached out to the anti-immigration far-right to capture votes, rankling some of his own allies by creating the new immigration ministry. Critics have said the government should not mix immigration with national identity.
Just one question: How on Earth do you keep immigration and national identity separate?