The Official Blog Of Edward Cline

Of Tom Hanks, the “Slaughter House,“ Polar Bears, and Bronx Cheers

The avalanche of news and pending developments has compelled me to take a “shotgun” approach to the issues.

The Sands of Iwo Jima, according to Tom Hanks

Actor/Producer Tom Hanks made some unconventional, controversial remarks about the Pacific campaign during World War II. He more or less claimed that the conflict between American and Japanese forces was motivated by racism, not by ideas. Let me rephrase that: It was more a matter of American racism than it was stopping Imperial Japan’s version of Nazi’s Germany’s Lebensraum, a policy that could just as well have included the annexation of the West Coast if the U.S. had not recovered from Pearl Harbor.

Back in World War II,” he says, “we viewed the Japanese as ‘yellow, slant-eyed dogs’ that believed in different gods. They were out to kill us because our way of living was different. We, in turn, wanted to annihilate them because they were different. Does that sound familiar, by any chance, to what’s going on today?”

One really is at a loss to task Hanks on this matter. He is a fine actor and heir to the mantle of also gregarious actor Jimmy Stewart (who actually piloted bombers over Germany). One is reluctant to slap his face silly, saying, “Wake up and smell the history!” but instead put a encouraging hand on his shoulder and say, “Read a few more books, son, before you make a fool of yourself.” But he did speak the words, and must take the slapping.

True, the Japanese were out to kill us. Just as they were out to kill the Chinese, the Koreans, the Filipinos, the Burmese, the Indians and any Europeans who were unlucky enough to be in the way of the Japanese march to “co-prosperity” at the point of a gun. Aside from race, just how “different” was our “way of living” from the Japanese “way of living”? Even with its nascent welfare state, America was still a relatively free country. Shinto and emperor worship, allied with bushido-driven fascist militarism, governed Japan. Also, the hubris of racial superiority.

True, many American soldiers went to war as racists. Much of the war propaganda was themed on race. But while Japanese war and political policy was racially motivated, American war and political policy was not. Its policy was: Defeat the aggressor. There was no trace of “moral equivalence” in those days. Victor David Hanson noted in his fine article, “Is Tom Hanks Unhinged?”:

Despite Hanks’ efforts at moral equivalence in making the U.S. and Japan kindred in their hatreds, America was attacked first, and its democratic system was both antithetical to the Japan of 1941, and capable of continual moral evolution in a way impossible under Gen. Tojo and his cadre.

Was our military out to “annihilate” the Japanese? No, not as a race, not even as a culture. Just its rank-and-file soldiers, who were indoctrinated to fight to the death in the realm of physical force. They owed their lives to the emperor, to their ancestors, and to die was to honor them. For our forces, it was a matter of killing them, or being killed by them. The stories of the suicidal combat and behavior of the Japanese brought back by soldiers, seamen, and Marines who fought them are legion.

So, it makes one wonder what interpretation Hanks would put on the European campaign. Was that fought from racist motives? He would be hard put to make such an argument, unless he claimed that “we” just didn’t like their cuisine, beer-drinking habits, folk-dances, and guys in funny uniforms who shouted speeches in a guttural language to mass rallies of true believers.

And, what did Hanks mean by “Does that sound familiar, by any chance, to what’s going on today?” Frankly, no, it isn’t familiar with anything that’s going on today. It is difficult to construe any meaning in this statement, unless he was referring to Islam’s ongoing war against the West, or perhaps to Iraq and Afghanistan, or to the Israeli-Palestinian issue. He did not qualify or clarify his remark. Neither did he shed any light on his meaning during an interview. He didn’t back-pedal. He stuck to his original remark and said that “America overcoming racism is taking an awfully long time.” Really? America boasts a black president, blacks on the Supreme Court, blacks in Congress, senior officers in the military, intellectuals and writers of many races, doctors, scientists, Japanese and Indian financiers, innovators, CEO’s…have I left anyone out? Perhaps Muslims and Patagonians.

Bill Gates’ “Final Solution”

One would think that Bill Gates, preeminent apologizer for his success and wealth, would know better than to jump on the anthropogenic global-warming wagon and say foolish things. But, he believes in it. And not only does he believe in it, he has a solution. During this year’s “Technology, Entertainment, Design” (TED) conference, he discussed the absolute necessity of reducing CO2 emissions to zero percent. His talk omitted any reference to the Climategate scandal surrounding the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia (and, as accomplices, NASA, NOAA, and sundry battalions of government-funded climatologists the world over), whose computers were diddled with and rigged and arm-twisted to produce the right politically-correct data and scary models. In his talk, Gates seemed to be oblivious to the headlines about the data-dumping conspiracy, a strange thing for a man to be whose career was devoted to creating computer software.

Addressing methods to reduce carbon emissions to zero, he suggested that, “if we do a good job on new vaccines, healthcare, and reproductive health services we could lower that [carbon emissions] by 10-15%.”

Did he forget that everyone in the audience, and he himself, was exhaling CO2? As was everyone else on the planet? Including all the inhabitants of the sink-holes he’s pouring his wealth into? All right. We’ll cut him some slack here. We’ll assume that he actually meant cutting CO2 emissions to zero by setting aside the human race’s own emissions and not including them in his equations. Then what? If the zero point is to be maintained, it means that we will all just sit around twiddling our thumbs until we drop dead from starvation (growing food entails producing those greenhouse gases), freeze to death or collapse from heat stroke (from seasonal climate changes), or begin to murder and cannibalize each other until a population number acceptable to Gates and his worry-warts is reached. Call that number a “critical mass.”

But, no one need starve to death or endure a slow death at the hands of nature. Bill will help to reduce the population with new vaccines, healthcare, and reproductive health services — all necessarily administered by the state, although he doesn’t allude to that. His chosen panel of experts will decide who is to reproduce, and who isn’t, who is to receive medical care (when available), and who isn‘t. And if you are not lucky enough to be deemed an asset to the state, would you be so kind as to drop dead? We really wouldn’t want to resort to force, when things could become ugly.

Bill Gates either means what he says — or he should stop to think before speaking. But, he hasn’t clarified his remarks, either, so we must assume he means what he says.

Those “Deeming” Democrats, or, The “Slaughter” on East Capitol Street

Speaking of “deeming,” Nancy Pelosi has a solution to voting for the health care bill this week: Don’t vote for it! That is, forgo the whole roll call business in the House and just “deem” the bill passed. That is, not vote on the equally horrendous Senate version of the bill. Then send the House version without amendments to the White House for certain signature. An excellent way to bypass all those troublesome socialist health care “deniers.”

The “Slaughter” here is House Rules Chairman Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY), who CongressDaily reported Wednesday is “prepping to help usher the healthcare overhaul through the House and potentially avoid a direct vote on the Senate overhaul bill.” She is reportedly considering putting forth a rule that would dictate that the Senate version of the bill is automatically passed through the chamber once the House passes a corrections bill making changes to it.

This is the same Louise Slaughter of “her dead sister’s false teeth” fame I mentioned in a previous post, when she participated in the bogus “bipartisan” conference of fading memory. But, rather than belabor the obvious evil of any health care bill, there is an aspect of this enervating sordidness that has been overlooked, or not completely grasped. You look at the grunge who are running and ruining this country — from the White House to Congress and all the way down to the mail room staff at the IRS or FDA or any federal agency or department you care to name — and you must ask yourself: What moves them? What are they counting on? I can do no better than include here a remark I made in an email to a friend on the character and behavior of Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi.

Just read your comments here, and it caused me to grasp the horrible motive behind especially Pelosi’s actions, statements and arrogance: She can’t help but realize that if her “beloved” health care passes — without or without a vote, with a roll call or with just a “deeming” — she will be voted out of office. I am certain that she doesn’t care if the Democrats suffer a massacre in November, and that she is willing to sacrifice her own political career to get this bill passed.

She and Reid and Obama and Hoyer and the rest were willing to throw other Democrats under the bus. What can you say about someone who, driven by an obvious, naked malice for freedom and a demonstrable contempt for Americans and this country (remember her “Are you kidding?” reply to the reporter who asked if health care was enumerated in the Constitution?), is willing to help destroy this country, even if it means sacrificing herself? She has not only thrown some of her recalcitrant supporters under the bus, she herself has rolled under it.

There is the proof of the pudding — the precise, unsweetened, undisguised character of altruism and self-sacrifice in action. She is the distaff James Taggart, a principal villain in Ayn Rand‘s Atlas Shrugged. She wants to hear America scream. She wants to laugh and say, “There! It’s law! Deal with it! You’re going to obey me even if it kills you!”

Would she care if she learned that tens of thousands of doctors and other medical professionals would quit if the bills passes? No. If millions of Americans engaged in mass civil disobedience and refused to cooperate with or submit to the law’s dictates? No. She will advocate the use of naked force. Obama would approve and give the order. After all, from the first day of his presidential campaign and throughout his administration, he has waged his own jihad against America. He, too, seeks submission. His friends the Islamists don’t have a monopoly on that end.

It’s time Americans woke up to that fact. It’s not just about health care. It’s about power. It’s about tyranny. It’s about destroying America.

Humpty Dumpty’s Crumbling Global-Warming Wall

Not surprisingly, the polar bears, the Amazon rain forests, the glaciers, the snail darters, woodpeckers of all sizes and colors, and spotted owls of yesteryear are doing just fine. They’re not disappearing, or melting, or perishing, or being driven to extinction. Gerald Warner in the London Daily Telegraph, however, focuses on just the polar bears and the rain forests in his unheralded article of March 16th, “Climategate: two more bricks fall out of the IPCC wall of deceit — rainforests and polar bears.“ He writes, with some humor, after reporting on NASA‘s own findings that a slight decrease of rainfall over the Amazon rain forests did not turn Brazil into a vast Sahara desert:

So, the rainforest scare, like the Himalayan glaciers panic, is garbage. A further encouraging feature of this development is that genuine scientists are increasingly becoming emboldened to challenge the IPCC’s junk science: the Academy is beginning to reassert its integrity. AGW [anthropogenic global warming] without withered rainforests is Hamlet without the prince. It was one of those emotive claims much invoked by priggish children in the voice-overs of nanny-state “green” commercials, lecturing their elders on the stewardship of the planet.

And all of Al Gore’s disciples, soothsayers and king’s men can’t put it back up again.

In the meantime, Hollywood, or one of its suburban branches, insists on producing AGW scare movies. Rob Lyons in a Spiked Online article, “What’s wrong with exploiting nature?” delves into the latest non-block buster, “Dirty Oil,” about how awful it is that oil developers in Alberta, Canada, are despoiling the landscape and altering the bucolic lives of local inhabitants.

With greens constantly assuring us that the day of reckoning for ‘peak oil’ is just around the corner, being able to exploit Canada’s oil sands to increase the total world reserves of oil and provide energy security seems a pretty good deal. But Dirty Oil seems uninterested in the wider economic benefits of oil-sands production.

Practically my only reservation about Mr. Lyons’ article is that he innocently assumes that the “greens” are truly concerned about oil reserves and everyone‘s well-being. The “greens” would rather everything come to an oil-starved halt and everyone be so good as to take a powder.

Israel’s Bronx Cheer to Obama, Clinton, and Biden

Finally, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu cocked a snook at President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and Vice-President Joe Biden by announcing the continuation of Israeli settlement building in East Jerusalem, and on the very day Biden was in Israel to talk him out of it.

It left US Vice-President Joe Biden humiliated as he had traveled to the region in the hope of announcing the restart of peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

Biden, a buffoon, will get over the humiliation. He has the resilience of a rubber mouse pad.

Obama and Company would rather not see that construction take place because it would upset the Palestinians. The stateless Palestinians, you see, seem to be a better “client state” and ally to the U.S. than is Israel. The Palestinians do not recognize Israel’s right to exist — indeed, Israel is missing from the maps Palestinian school books — while Israel is expected to recognize their right to swamp Israel with its stateless manqués and so destroy it. The land at issue is land Israel won during the 1967 war.

Why would Obama and company side with losers? What could they possible gain in their ostensive fantasy of seeing Palestinians mix and mingle peacefully with Israelis in some Hegelian thesis-antithesis apotheosis? Daniel Pipes offers some advice to Obama, Clinton, and other policymaking denizens of the White House:

It concerns not a life-and-death issue, such as the menace of Iran’s nuclear buildup or Israel’s right to defend itself from Hamas predations, but the triviality of the timing of a decision to build new housing units in Israel’s capital city. Wiser heads will insist that White House amateurs end this tempest in a teapot and revert to normal relations.

That advice is premised on the assumption that Obama and Company care about Iran’s nuclear buildup and Israel’s right to defend itself against Iran and the stateless beggars of non-existent Palestine, armed as they are by Hamas and Hezbollah. It presumes that the White House’s amateurs value “normal relations” with Israel. It asks that Obama and his fellow amateurs appreciate that it is a matter of life-and-death for Israel.

But, in truth, Obama does not value Israel. He would rather see it compromise and negotiate itself out of existence. Just as he would rather see America submit to socialism.


Gore’s Wishes are Your Commands


Murder, She Wrote


  1. Neil Parille

    The US should have remained out of WWII, as Rand suggested and as Peikoff said in The Ominous Parallels.

    Of course the US would have used the a-bomb on the Germans, so where is the racism?

    -Neil Parille

  2. Mo

    “Read a few more books, son, before you make a fool of yourself.”

    can you recommend any books on this matter ?

  3. Rob

    Mr Parille, would you please remind us exactly where in "The Ominous Parallels" Leonard Peikoff wrote that the US should have stayed out of WWII?

    And where in Ayn Rand's writings did she ever suggest such a thing?

  4. Edward Cline

    Mo: There are dozens of well-written histories of the Pacific campaign in the history sections of Barnes & Noble and perhaps in your local library. And on Amazon Books. Ed

    Rob: Thanks for the question to Parille. I doubt that Rand or Peikoff ever said such things, especially considering that Japan attacked the U.S. I recall that Rand had reservations about the U.S. entering WWI, but not WWII.


  5. John Shepard

    Excellent article, Mr. Cline, as always.

    Re: American involvement in WWII, Dr. Peikoff, in his podcast # 92, comments on the last question (13:58):

    "'Many Objectists seem to be very much in favor of the US involvement in World War Two. Would this be considered an Objectivist position?'"

    I hope this helps!

    John Shepard

    P.S. There's now an index for all of Dr. Peikoff's podcasts on the forum, Objectivism Online, here:

  6. Anonymous

    John: Thanks for the Peikoff info. Will listen to it some time today.


  7. Anonymous

    John: Thanks for the Peikoff link. Listened to the one you recommended (of course, I had to wait until the very end for him to answer the question). I agree with Rand's and Peikoff's take on WWII, and have read the books Peikoff cites. Have known for years that WWII was Roosevelt's way of "ending unemployment by sending men off to get killed" — that was part and parcel of his welfare state politics — and also to form an alliance with Soviet Russia. It's too bad that Churchill didn't have the upper hand and had to depend on the U.S. I would've preferred to see Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia duke it out; without American subsidies and war aid, Stalin would have fallen and Germany exhausted itself trying to hold onto what parts of the USSR it had conquered.

    Roosevelt was a more calculating bastard than most people realize. He sought war as a way of pulling his statist chestnuts out of the economic fire he was resposnible for. I remember not likeing him as he was portrayed in grade and high school history books, not even when he was elevated to sainthood.

    That being said, as Peikoff noted, once we were attacked by Japan, the proper response was to retaliate, and this in no way should be cause for doubt or disapproval of the courage and fighting abilities of our armed forces then (or now). That is the issue cenral to the Tom Hanks remarks — there's no justification for casting aspersions on the character of the men who actually fought in WWII.


  8. John Shepard

    You are very welcome, Mr. Cline!

    I read your article this morning, then read the few comments, and I saw that there was a question as to Miss Rand's an Dr. Peikoff's views on America's involvement in WWII, and I thought that I could point to something readily available online that could resolve the question.

    I agree with your further comments, and I look forward to reading your coming articles.

    Long live Lady Liberty!


  9. Bruce V. Bracken, Spoken Word

    Tom Hanks and Bill Gates, sackcloth pimps and whores on parade. Maybe BG ought to just work on reducing his own emissions to zero. He is the Dr. Stadtler of the computer world.

  10. Michael Labeit

    I had the pleasure of having one of my questions asked to Victor Davis Hanson by Peter Robinson on part 5/5 of the lastest episode of Uncommon Knowledge located here:

    This was my question:

    What has changed within the U.S. military's philosophy of war-making (and in our culture in general) that has allowed the doctrine of overwhelming force, as heeded by Gen. Sherman and Gen. MacArthur, to be replaced with the doctrine of war as social work supported by Gen McChrystal?

  11. Michael Labeit


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