Patterico's Pontifications


Russian Jet Possibly Downed By ISIS Bomb

Filed under: General — Dana @ 5:57 pm

[guest post by Dana]


There’s significant evidence that a bomb brought down Russia’s Metrojet Flight 9268 over the Sinai Peninsula last weekend, U.S. officials told NBC News on Wednesday, saying U.S. investigators are focusing on ISIS operatives or sympathizers as the likely bombers.

Questions have swirled over whether foul play or terrorism may have downed the Metrojet-operated Airbus A321 since it crashed in Egypt on Saturday, killing all 224 people aboard. ISIS’s media office in Sinai released an audio message Wednesday reiterating its claim of responsibility. Neither Wednesday’s claim nor an earlier one immediately after the crash said how ISIS is supposed to have brought down the plane.

A U.S. official told NBC News he expects Russia to retaliate “heavily and militarily” if the theory is borne out.

U.S. officials haven’t entirely ruled out mechanical failure, but say that it is “likely” it was a bomb that brought down the jet.

10 Downing Street is also being reserved, “we cannot say categorically why the Russian jet crashed”.

Allahpundit offers this as evidence for a possible terrorist act:

What’s the evidence? For starters, satellites picked up a large flash of light around the plane right before it went down. It wasn’t a missile that caused that, as the launch would have been detected. It might be an exploding fuel tank, possibly caused by some sort of accidental technical malfunction, but a Russian news agency reported that everything sounded normal in the cockpit as recently as four minutes before the plane crashed. Either a fuel tank exploded with no warning to the crew that it was in distress or something else exploded.

Also, Jake Tapper reported tonight that after the jet went down, U.S. Intelligence picked up increaseed “chatter” from ISIS, leading them to believe ISIS in the Sinai Peninsula may have put a bomb on the plane or had a suicide bomber on board.

According to a national security expert, If ISIS was able to plant a bomb on the plane, it’s a real game-changer for the region.


Party of Wealthy & White Lefty Ladies

Filed under: General — JVW @ 3:45 pm

[guest post by JVW]

Kevin Williamson of National Review Online has an interesting post on the degree to which today’s Democrat party has a curious power structure. As he writes:

There is an ugly and seldom-acknowledged racial dynamic animating the politics of the Left: The ranks of the Democratic party swell with black, Hispanic, and immigrant voters, but the party is run by wealthy liberal white ladies: Hillary Rodham Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Randi Weingarten, Bernie Sanders (honorary liberal white lady), Nancy Pelosi, etc. The message: “You people provide the votes, we’ll make the decisions.” The Democrats are a kind of perverse Master Blaster, with Debbie Wasserman Schultz mounted piggyback upon the shoulders of millions of black and Hispanic families.

It’s a point I had never stopped to consider. Sure President Obama remains the formal head of the party, but at this point in his career it is pretty clear that his agenda is exhausted and out-of-favor, even among the rank-and-file of his own party. Nancy Pelosi remains the undisputed capo di tutti cap in the House, and though nominally outranked by Reid, Durbin, and Schumer, is there any doubt that Elizabeth Warren is right now the most influential Democrat in the Senate?

[Interesting note: Only three of the current eighteen Democrat governors are women, which comports with the general idea that the party has been decimated at the statewide level under Obama. All three incumbent women, naturally, are wealthy, progressive, and white.]

A bit more from Williamson:

The challenge for the Left is that while the Republican party is mainly a coalition of ideologies, the Democratic party is mainly a coalition of interest groups, and the current model of Democratic politics — poor and largely non-white people providing the muscle and rich white liberals calling the shots — is unsustainable. The social attitudes of non-white voters are pretty plainly not those of white liberals, and, at the same time — and probably more significant — the economic interests of white liberals are pulling away from those of the people in whose interest they purport to act. . . . If you’re wondering why Democrats lean so deeply into the racial rhetoric — Joe Biden’s shameful “They want to put y’all back in chains!” etc. — that’s a big part of your answer.

Last night was mostly a good night for the GOP, but it is clear that a lot of work remains to be done over the next year to avoid the calamity of President Rodham Clinton (or even President Sanders). Reminding all voters that there remains a huge gulf between the priorities of working-class minorities (jobs, education, safe streets) and the priorities of the people leading their party (abortion on demand, bathroom choice for transgenders, trendy environmentalism) will be an important way to determine which party is worthy of their support.


Some Good News From Kentucky

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:41 am

[guest post by Dana]

For just the second time in 48 years, a Republican has been elected as governor of Kentucky. Last night, Matt Bevin (R) was declared the winner in a 53% to 44% victory. Along with Bevin, Jenean Hampton (R) became the first African-American elected to statewide office. She becomes the state’s new lieutenant governor.

Hampton has an impressive personal story :

Both Bevin and Hampton are Tea Party activists who have never held elective office. Hampton’s path certainly represents triumph over adversity. Born in Detroit, the 57-year-old Hampton and her three sisters were raised by a single mom who lacked a high school education and couldn’t afford a television or a car. But Hampton was determined to better herself. She graduated with a degree in industrial engineering and worked for five years in the automobile industry to pay off her college loans. She then joined the Air Force, retiring as a Captain. She earned an MBA from the University of Rochester, moved to Kentucky and became a plant manager in a corrugated packaging plant. Then she lost her job in 2012.

She used her free time to start a career in politics and becoming active in the Tea Party. She ran a losing race for state representative in 2014 but won an early endorsement from Senator Rand Paul. She was tapped by Bevin to be his running-mate earlier this year.

“I’m aware of the historical significance. People point it out … Really, I just never think about it,” she says.“We’re different races, different sexes, he grew up in the country, I grew up in the city. We represent a broad range of the Kentucky demographic.”

Hampton, a woman of determination, character and resolve. Or, as the New Republic’s Brian Buetler refers to accomplished black conservatives (who are obviously allowing white people to use them to absolve themselves of racism, because clearly there can be no compelling reason for a black person to be a conservative…), she’s just a token.


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