William Katz:  Urgent Agenda

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SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE 

SOME EXPERTS SAW THIS COMING, FROM FOX BUSINESS:  The average price for a gallon of regular gasoline in the U.S. started rising again in the past week, after declining for nearly 100 days in a row during the summer driving season.  The price on Sunday was $3.417 a gallon, according to AAA.  That makes it five straight days of increases that began on Wednesday morning, when the price ticked up to $3.381 per gallon from $3.674 the previous day.  The average price a week a go was $3.678. A year ago it was $3.188.  Gas hit a high of $5.016 on June 14.  The Biden administration manipulated the price of gas at the pump by releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, thus depressing prices in time for the election.  But the effect may be wearing off.  Some experts predict a rise of prices at the pump in coming weeks, or, certainly, right after the election.  The driver is knifed in the back again.

September 25-26, 2022      

 

DEMS WOBBLE ON CRIME ISSUE:  The economy, crime, and education dominate the list of issues of greatest concern among voters.  The Dems are losing, in polls, on all three.   Consider crime, from Breitbart: 

The White House on Monday tried to downplay President Joe Biden’s responsibilities on crime, telling reporters that the problem is “complicated.”

Wasn't too complicated in New York when Rudy Giuliani and Mike Bloomberg reduced the murder rate by 80 percent and made New York the safest big city in America.  Those were the days.

Fox News reporter Peter Doocy questioned White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre about crime during the daily briefing, asking her whether Biden believes that America’s major cities are safe.

Referring to a recent New York Times article on rising crime, Jean-Pierre noted “the crime is complicated and multifaceted” and pivoted to promoting Biden’s spending bills.

Doocy noted murder rates in major cities were still stubbornly high, and that thefts and robberies in major cities increased by around 20 percent in the first half of 2022.

Jean-Pierre responded by blaming high crime rates on former President Donald Trump, noting that Biden “inherited a rising crime rate” when he took office.

When Doocy asked again whether Americans in major cities should feel safe, she replied, “It is not a yes or no question, it is very much a question of what has he done, that’s how we see the question.”

What an answer!  How did she get the job?

Doocy further pressed the questions on crime and safety, asking Jean-Pierre about her predecessor, former White House press secretary Jen Psaki, warning Democrats about their vulnerabilities on crime.

“In Pennsylvania, the Republicans have been spending millions of dollars on the air on crime ads against Fetterman because that’s where they see his vulnerability,” Psaki said in an interview on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday adding that crime was “a huge issue” in Pennsylvania.

But Jean-Pierre dismissed the comments from her former boss, accusing Doocy of mischaracterizing the comments.

“I don’t agree with your characterization of what she actually said,” she replied.

COMMENT:  In other words, this administration, and the Democratic Party generally, have nothing really to say about crime.  They want Americans to believe that it's not a big problem at all, merely a nuisance.  One of the great rules of journalism is that you never tell people that they don't see what they actually see.  The Democrats are doing just that, and they will pay for it.

September 25-26, 2022      

 

IRAN BOILS, BIDEN BORED:  Far too little attention is being paid to the rioting in Iran.  Clearly, there is a thirst for regime change, but the Biden administation seems intent on appeasing that same regime, pretty much the foreign policy of Barack Obama.  From AFP:

Iran’s judiciary chief on Sunday vowed no leniency against the wave of unrest that has rocked the country since the death of the young Kurdish-Iranian woman Mahsa Amini while in the custody of the morality police.

The warning by the head of the Judiciary, Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei, came after nine nights of protests and street clashes and echoed earlier comments by ultra-conservative President Ebrahim Raisi.

At least 41 people have died so far, mostly protesters but including members of Iran’s security forces, according to an official toll, although human rights groups say the real figure is higher.

The judiciary chief “emphasized the need for decisive action without leniency” against the core instigators of the “riots,” the judiciary’s Mizan Online website said.

Hundreds of demonstrators, reformist activists and journalists have been arrested amid the mostly night-time demonstrations that have spread to scores of cities since unrest first broke out after Amini’s death on September 16.

Security forces have fired live rounds and birdshot, rights groups charge, while protesters have hurled rocks, torched police cars, set ablaze state buildings, and shouted, “Death to the dictator.”

Iran’s largest protests in years have been led by women and triggered not by classic political or economic grievances but by anger over the Islamic republic’s strictly enforced gender-based dress code and general resentment against the conservative regime.

Amini, whose Kurdish first name was Jhina, was arrested on September 13 for allegedly breaching the rules that mandate tightly-fitted hijab head coverings and which ban, among other things, ripped jeans and brightly colored clothes. She had been wearing a hijab, but was allegedly not wearing it properly, meaning some of her hair may have been exposed.
Some Iranian women protesters have since taken off and burned their hijabs in the rallies and cut off their hair, some dancing near large bonfires to the applause of crowds that have chanted “zan, zendegi, azadi” or “woman, life, freedom.”

Iranian Academy Award-winning filmmaker Asghar Farhadi was the latest to add his voice of support for Iran’s “progressive and courageous women leading protests for their human rights alongside men.”

“I saw outrage and hope in their faces and in the way they marched in the streets,” he said in a video message on Instagram. “I deeply respect their struggle for freedom and the right to choose their own destiny despite all the brutality they are subjected to.”
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The world has learned of much of the turmoil and violence through shaky mobile phone footage posted and spread on social media, even as authorities have throttled internet access...

...The foreign ministry said Sunday it had summoned Britain’s ambassador over what it described as an “invitation to riots” by Farsi-speaking media based in London, and Norway’s envoy over “unconstructive comments” made by the parliament speaker.
Iran has also organized large rallies in defense of the hijab and conservative values, and another pro-government rally was set to be held Sunday in Enghelab (Revolution) Square in central Tehran.

The main reformist group inside Iran, the Union of Islamic Iran People’s Party, has called for repealing the mandatory dress code and winding down the morality police.

The party — led by former aides to ex-Iranian president Mohammad Khatami, who oversaw a 1997-2005 thaw with the West — also called on the government to “authorize peaceful demonstrations” and release those arrested.

Human rights groups based abroad have sought to shine a light on the turmoil rocking Iran, citing their own sources in the country.

Oslo-based group Iran Human Rights has put the death toll at 54, excluding security personnel.

COMMENT:  Please note, among other things, the silence of so-called "women's" organizations in the United States.  You'd think they'd be interested in the fate of the women of Iran.  Think again.  Their first loyalty is to the political left, women be damned.

And how about the groups that anguish over the so-called "legitimate rights of the Palestinian people"?  Do they have any interest in the legitimate rights of the Iranian people?  Apparently not.  Even though Iranians are shot down in the street for protesting, these "rights" groups are uninterested.  Have you ever seen any press coverage of this massive contradiction?  If so, let me know.

September 25, 2022