News You Can Use for April 19

Happy Saturday. Have a blessed day.
Happy Saturday. May you have a blessed day.

Stories of the Day

Rubbing the right people the right way. “Rushing to an afternoon vote last month, Sen. Ted Cruz hopped the underground tram to the U.S. Capitol from his office across the street. The Texan planted his black ostrich cowboy boots in the middle of the small subway car without getting so much as a nod from the other senators–Republican or Democrat–amiably chatting or huddled in their seats. Mr. Cruz finds himself standing alone a lot these days. His response to the cold shoulders: “The establishment despised Ronald Reagan” before he became president, “but the people loved him. [Snip] Some fellow Senators still apparently aren’t ready. After a recent floor vote, Mr. Cruz entered an elevator occupied by three lawmakers; none greeted him. After a silent ride to the basement for the subway, Mr. Cruz said: “Have a great day.” The others rushed out, saying nothing.” Ted Cruz, Invoking Reagan, Angers GOP Colleagues but Wins Fans Elsewhere

A disgraceful decision from a disgraceful president. “The Obama administration signaled its shame* over a nakedly political decision to indefinitely delay the Keystone Pipeline by burying the news on Good Friday afternoon. The decision was bought and paid for by wealthy green ideologues and green energy rent-seekers, anxious to cash in on subsidies for solar panels, windmills, and other expensive projects that are guaranteed a positive return by taxpayer money.” A disgraceful Keystone decision delay

Playing political games with good jobs at a time when some folks could REALLY use one. “Since Obama reportedly told a group of bipartisan governors he’d be making a decision within a few months in February, I’ve been leaning toward the theory that President Obama will wring every last possible Democratic donation dollar out of the wealthy, Manhattan-and-California-based, Tom Steyer-ish green aristocratic set before finally approving the pipeline shortly before the election — the better to provide a last-minute lift to vulnerable red-state Democrats like Sen. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana — but it sounds like I spoke way too soon. Approving the pipeline would indeed infuriate the aforementioned radical eco-contingent; they may be few, but they are well-monied and their useful-idiot followers are obnoxiously energized. No need to risk that kind of concentrated backlash, and of course, abiding by their wishes and rejecting the pipeline could be directly harmful for those vulnerable Dems (since, you know, almost two-thirds of America approves of the project, no big deal or anything). Nope — the most politically pusillanimous course of continued delay could very well mean the least net damage for the White House here, so why not just keep making up convenient excuses as they go along and telling Canada to go jump in a lake? I suppose that when Obama told those governors he’d be making a decision “one way or the other in a couple of months,” he was just casually, carelessly, dishonestly putting them off, too — just like the rest of us.” The Obama admin is delaying the Keystone XL review process through the election. Yes, again.

The Left: doing what’s not best for our country, one action at a time. “Barack Obama just punted on the Keystone Pipeline, again, and some Democrats say they are angry at him.[Snip] Do ya think Obama knows or cares about that? Has he ever shown that he cares about jobs? Obama doesn’t govern; he agitates, he positions, and he tees up issues. Obama doesn’t care about jobs, but he does care some about Democrats keeping the Senate. Eleven Democrats recently wrote him a letter urging approval of the Keystone. They’re all vulnerable senators. If they lose, the Democrats lose the Senate and Obama will find himself cornered during the last two years of his presidency. He doesn’t want the Keystone, but he doesn’t want to be cornered more. Obama’s heart is clearly with the anti-science environmental radicals who oppose the Keystone. But he doesn’t want to lose the Senate. My guess is, Obama made this extension indefinite to give himself control over when to end it and announce approval. He’ll do that once he has handed the environmental radicals who oppose it something in return, so they don’t abandon Democrats this fall. They will get some nasty new spin on EPA regulations, another turtle that needs protecting from ranchers, whatever. Around August or September, Obama will announce a change of heart, approve the Keystone, and give vulnerable Democrats something positive to crow about at home close to the elections.” Obama Just Set up a Headfake for the Democrats on the Keystone

Class warfare only helps those in power. The little people get the shaft. “Voters who will hear the Obama call for envy and redistribution should ask themselves and others: Would you prefer to live in an America where the market is dynamic and opportunity abounds, or in France, where unemployment is high and tax rates are crushing? Don’t you prefer opportunity to envy?” The United States of Envy

2nd Amendment

Bring it on Mayor Bloomberg. You WILL lose. “The first and perhaps greatest problem with Bloomberg’s plan is that most Americans don’t want the former mayor of New York telling them what to do or which of their constitutional rights need to be impinged upon. Though he talks about wanting to organize the “grass roots,” what he is discussing is a classic top-down operation in which a coastal elite seeks to manipulate voters in flyover country. Bloomberg’s cash was enough to co-opt various minority power brokers in New York as well as to overwhelm unimpressive ballot opponents. But it can’t convince people who support gun rights to shut up. Nor can it manufacture an equally passionate body of gun opponents where none exists.” Bloomberg’s Plan Is Good News for NRA

The Clintons

Our royal, Leftist family. “The Bush baby just didn’t get the same kind of treatment as Chelsea’s, which got ALL CAPS SQUEE from Candy Crowley on Twitter.” WHERE DEM POLITICIANS ARE CONCERNED, THE MEDIA ARE A BUNCH OF ROYALISTS: WaPo: Chelsea Clinton’s news: Not quite a royal baby announcement, but a pretty big deal.

Gag me. “The willingness of political commentators to opine on whether becoming a grandmother will help or hurt Hillary Clinton’s chances of winning the presidency in 2016 is in one sense merely a testament to the obsessive nature of contemporary political journalism in which everything, no matter how trivial, becomes fodder for analysis. But it also illustrates the way the Clintons have transitioned from a political brand to the sort of celebrity status that not even the Bushes—their putative dynastic rivals—have attained. Chelsea and her husband Marc Mezvinsky may not be quite the U.S. version of William and Kate. But the willingness of the press to hype the pregnancy as an event that dwarfs any attention given any Bush babies, let alone those connected to any other presidential contender, shows that the Clintons are now on a par with the Kennedys as personalities rather than merely political figures.” America’s Royals and the 2016 Race

If I was a betting person, I’d bet that she won’t run. “More important than the individual results, however, is the trend. Since leaving office as secretary of state, Clinton’s favorable rating has been on a downward trajectory. And this is before the rigors of a campaign, before a Biden or a Warren or an O’Malley or a Cuomo or a Schweitzer or a Sanders throws a punch or two, before Christie, Bush, Rubio, Walker, Jindal, Paul, Kasich, Ryan, Perry, and Pence go for the Cobra Clutch Bulldog. A shoo-in? So was The Undertaker.” The Bigger They Are . . . Hillary Falls to Earth

Common Core

Ruining education. “The problem is math. In addition to embracing a common core, the education elite have again rejected the tried-and-true way of teaching mathematics in favor of the trendy and novel. But the methodology is so different that the majority of parents cannot help their children. As a basic example, children are encouraged to estimate a series of numbers to be added instead of simply carrying a 1 from the right column to the left column. Children are discouraged from counting on their fingers. Their teachers would prefer they estimate totals than be precise. More convoluted, children are encouraged to explain their answers. No longer is it correct to add 2 and 2 to get 4. Now a child must explain why that is so. If a child decides that the answer is 5 instead of 4 but provides a logical reason for the answer, teachers are encouraged to give the child points.” The Common Core Problem

Crony Capitalism

Preferred corporations and government becoming one in the same. “It has cozied up to governments around the world so effectively that its chairman, Eric Schmidt, is a White House advisor. In Britain, its executives meet with ministers more than almost any other corporation.” Google: the unelected superpower: Google has cosied up to governments around the world so effectively that its chairman is a White House advisor

Culture of Corruption

Falling from grace. “The deals in which Davis was involved, which the DMN reported earlier this week, are the subject of the ongoing FBI probe. It’s not clear whether Davis herself is a target. But the fact that she voted on bills in ways that helped her financially, even changing her position in the midst of events, suggest that she is. Davis denies any wrongdoing and told the DMN that she just fights for her constituents. Davis is is the Democratic nominee for governor of Texas. Republican nominee Greg Abbott’s campaign issued the following statement about the FBI probe. ‘This revelation – the latest in a series of bombshells regarding Sen. Davis’ ethical conduct – is both shocking and unsurprising at the same time,” spokesman Matt Hirsch said in the statement. “Sen. Davis must fully disclose the facts about any wrongdoing and the extent of her involvement in that wrongdoing. Texans deserve to know the truth about Sen. Davis’ involvement in a matter the FBI is investigating. This is a serious ethics issue that may violate federal law and cannot be swept under the rug, as Sen. Davis has tried to do when confronted with questions about her ethics thus far.’” Wendy Davis Deals Are the Subject of an FBI Corruption Investigation

David Axelrod

Axelrod doing what Axelrod does best. “In his work for President Obama, David helped shape a campaign that reflected his vision, focused on building an economy that works for all hardworking people and not just a privileged few,” Miliband said. “He will be a huge asset to our campaign.” Perhaps. But it’s worth pointing out that income inequality in America has gotten worse, not better, during the Obama years; that the president Axelrod helped elect has a miserable record at creating a healthy economy in which opportunity is broadly available and that works for all hardworking people; and that the 2012 Obama campaign was almost bereft of any vision. That doesn’t mean Axelrod is ineffective. Mr. Obama, for example, ran one way in 2008, as the avatar of hope and change, and he won; and quite a different way in 2012, using tactics that were ruthless and dishonest, and he won. The Obama campaigns (unlike the Obama administration) were well-run, modern, and highly competent. So yes, Axelrod knows how to win elections. What he and his former boss, the president, don’t know diddly-squat about is governing effectively. But that doesn’t seem to matter.Helping to ruin one country apparently wasn’t enough; David Axelrod now wants to do his part to ruin another. At least he’ll be well paid for it.” Axelrod, Having Helped Ruin America, Now Wants to Do the Same to the UK

Elections

Can’t we all just get along? “Republicans on both sides of the intraparty divide, then, would do well to remember that they agree on quite a lot. It is one thing to have an intraparty fight about the role of government, but it is all academic if the Democrats have the power to enact Obamacare and pass untold fortunes off to green-energy cronies like Solyndra.”  Can This Marriage Be Saved? The Republican establishment needs the grassroots, and vice versa.

Train wreck ahead. “We’ve heard almost nothing except Kochsteria from Democrats in 2014, starting with Harry Reid and working down to the grassroots level. Jill Lawrence argues at The Week that Democrats should be worried about their own billionaires than those of the Republicans, and not just because of hypocrisy. In 2014, their agendas — and their cash — will put them on a collision course with the party’s attempts to hold serve in the midterms:

Reducing gun violence and curbing global warming are high priorities for most Democrats. So theoretically, they should be thrilled about plans by like-minded billionaires Michael Bloomberg and Tom Steyer to pour money into this year’s midterm elections.

But there’s a huge catch: The uber-rich pair could help Democrats lose the Senate and do worse than expected in the House. … [Snip]

Some Democrats can see the train wreck coming from here. Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA) predicts that Democrats will lose the House and probably the Senate too, thanks to ObamaCare (via Legal Insurrection).” Maybe Democrats should be more worried about their own billionaire allies

“Here’s the problem: All the states to have joined so far are very blue. Until some purple states and red states sign on, the compact has little in the way of territory to conquer.” Why a Plan to Circumvent the Electoral College Is Probably Doomed

“You can’t spin the failure of Obama’s economic policies. Too many people are still hurting while a majority believe we’re still in a recession. Since the Dems won’t mention “recovery” it’s up to Republican candidates to bring up the fact that there has been no recovery after 6 years – and bring it up often. If the Dems can’t talk about the economy or Obamacare, what will they have to say? You guessed it – minimum wage, income inequality, war on women, GOP are raaaaacists – you know, the usual.” Dem consultants telling candidates not to use the word ‘recovery’

“Who knows? Obamacare by itself may actually survive the negativity that the majority of Americans feel about the program. But the democrats better be careful, because they will not survive the “attitude” exhibited by theie presidential leader. While “It ain’t braggin if you can do it”, the debate still lingers as to whether Barack Obama really has “done” anything other than create five years of anxiety for American citizens and businesses.” Why Obama’s victory laps may cost democrats in November

Elizabeth Warren

When will Americans say “enough with the lies?’’ “The political price for lying to constituents isn’t what it used to be. But deceiving oneself still comes at great cost. Warren narrowly won office in the bluest of states. She did so while dramatically underperforming the top of the ticket. Elizabeth Warren could win the presidency of Harvard Law’s faculty senate by acclamation tomorrow. Winning the presidency of the United States, a more diverse place than a politically monolithic community that nevertheless prides itself on diversity, makes for a more daunting task.” LAST OF THE MOHICANS, FIRST OF THE CANTABRIGIANS: Elizabeth Warren Couldn’t Leave Her Big Lie Alone

Feminism

So very, very true. “Feminism is a political herding mechanism for insecure women. It’s thus no surprise that (1) feminists tend to be insecure; and (2) they send messages that tend to enhance insecurity in other women.” MOLLIE HEMINGWAY: Reflections On The Confidence Gap: Why Are Feminists So Insecure?

Foreign Policy

“Hey, maybe we should have stuck with missile defense in Eastern Europe when Obama came into office.” U.S. to announce ground troops to Poland, says… Polish defense minister

“A Washington Post report that the US has decided to deploy ground forces to Poland, ostensibly to act as a tripwire to deter further Russian threats, raises some interesting issues. [Snip] The first is why the story was leaked from a Polish source in an administration that almost always rushes to announce moves it wants to depict as decisive. It is almost as if Warsaw wanted to pre-empt Obama before he could have second thoughts. The second issue is that Poland will be taking the lead “under US patronage”. Obama, as usual, will be leading from behind.  The Washington Post story quotes the Poles as confessing that “US patronage” will be a hollow unless America re-arms. [Snip] The purpose of a tripwire deployment is to make it impossible for Washington to retreat. Thus, a US brigade in Poland is not designed to keep Putin from moving forward. It’s designed to nail Obama to the ground, to keep him from running away.” Outpost in the East

Hollywood

Finally! An Obama-bashing Hollywood movie! “The best news is that the movie’s fierce shots aimed at our failed president have nothing to do with why “Winter Soldier” is a standalone great movie that would have won a full 5 stars had it stayed away from that g**damned shaky cam.The side order of Obama-bashing and a perfect Gary Sinise cameo are merely icing. Near the end of his administration, Hollywood spent somewhere around a billion dollars bashing George W. Bush with a relentless series of awful anti-troop/anti-American films that flopped at a 100% rate.  Unfortunately for Obama, “Winter Soldier” is already a mammoth critical and box office hit. The message against him is being blasted out far and wide.” HOLLYWOOD TURNS AGAINST OBAMA WITH ‘CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER’

The godless Left is scared. Whoo hoo! “Meanwhile, at the very top of the box office there not only sits a film with “Captain America” in its title, the entire plot of the film is a brutal and obvious condemnation of Barack Obama’s foreign policy.  Mommy, tell me again how we’re losing the culture wars. Anti-Christian, left-wing Hollywood is looking at the box office tea leaves right now and feeing the ground collapse beneath their feet. We no longer need them to produce, distribute, or promote our movies. They can either jump aboard or eat our smoke. And that fact scares them to death.” CHRIST, AMERICA DOMINATE BOX OFFICE, ANTI-GOD ‘NOAH’ SINKS

IRS

We must start fighting back. “Conservatives are ruthlessly attacked in the most vicious of ways, so many tend to shut up and hide. You don’t get many calls for civility when the left’s war machine has sprung to life and targeted a conservative for an Alinsky-style onslaught. Even many conservatives duck and cover. Rarely does a liberal defend a conservative under attack. Usually, they are the ones launching it.   This imbalance is particularly acute inside the Beltway.” IRS Scandal: One-Way Civility in Academia: My “etiquette” upsets legal scholars more than the scandal does.

A government that’s out of control must be stopped. “Emails released under a federal court order showed the Obama administration’s Justice Department and the IRSLois Lerner discussed working together to find a tea party case they could prosecute for supposed false claims about political activity. “One prosecution would make an impact,” Ms. Lerner wrote in one of her emails. [Snip] Ms. Martin says the regulations appear to be an extension of an out-of-control effort to target and suppress the tea party and other conservative groups. “While they lied to Congress they were looking for ways to trump up charges to throw us in jail,” she told my audience. “We have government that has gone wild.” ISTOOK: IRS “wants to throw us in jail,” says tea party leader

Islam

Why do those on the Left hate Muslim women? “A real war on women. And the Left could care less. “A Muslim told me that scientific data shows women’s logical and speaking neurological center in brain are at the same place, and as a result, they are more forgetful than men! And so, this is why God made their testimony worth half. I was totally confounded and baffled by this ungrounded logic. How can Islam be compatible with human rights when according to Muslims and the Quran, Allah states that women inherit less than men in several instances?” Islam and Human Rights

If we’re not with them, then they’re going to shut us up through intimidation. “As I show in my new book Arab Winter Comes to America, CAIR routinely blindsides officials and places them on the defensive by its attacks, and so simply to avoid controversy they usually give the “civil rights group” what it wants: the cancellation, demonization and marginalization of every speaker who is remotely critical of Islam, jihad terror, and Sharia supremacism. And once they have succeeded in their work, there will be no one left to raise a whisper in protest against the next Islamic jihad attack. That is the ultimate – and insidious — objective of these campaigns against the freedom of speech.” 5 New Victories for Muslim Enemies of Free Speech

The Media

From the comments: “This is the finest analysis of what we are up against that I’ve seen. It is a must read for all.” “With legions of people like me, whose psycho-emotional posture underwent a thoughtless daily reset by The Times for decades, its influence on the mindset of our nation cannot be overestimated.  How could it possibly be true that, as the New York Times goes, so goes the nation?  Yet it is true, and the refusal or inability to understand its influence is grounded, I believe, in two main areas of misunderstanding or ignorance: first, people don’t grasp the multitude of stance-shaping options that are open to the “newspaper of record”; and, perhaps more importantly, they don’t appreciate the power of reverence and what could be called the “cascade” of The Times. [Snip] I’m here to reassure you and to call for a new patriotism of resistance. [Snip] And we need citizens who see the cascade for what it is: an ideologically biased cultural prism that, through its thoroughgoing, omnipresent and enveloping messages and directives, seeks to create a uniform stance and punish those who will not conform.  And if you are targeted by a subdivision of the government, announce your situation to all who will listen…despite the disinterest and reticence of the cascade.” Living in the New York Times World

Obamacare

The Left has no idea what’s coming. “In an interview with Modern Healthcare,Wellpoint CEO Joseph Swedish shored up a March 19 report from The Hill’s Elise Viebeck that Obamacare premiums are set to double in some parts of the country.” CEO Says Obamacare Premiums ‘Likely’ to Double

President of only half the country. “Another adjective that comes to mind is “unpresidential.” Obama, after all, isn’t president of only Democrats, nor are only Republicans opposed to ObamaCare or worried about its consequences. To those who see an inconsistency in this column’s criticizing Obama for using a gag we’ve employed in the past, let us clarify things with a Shermanesque answer to a question nobody is asking: We promise that we will never run for, or serve as, president.” Shut Up, He Explained Again: Obama continues a debate he insists is over.

Dems still shoving it  down our throats. “Anderson invites the customary thought experiment: “Imagine if Republicans were so stubbornly pushing something that was so evidently unpopular—and then had the gall to declare the debate over (in their favor).” My imagination isn’t that good, and I doubt yours is either.” IN THE COURT OF KING BARRY…

We will not comply. We will not shut up. We will, however, fight. “It is absurd for the Democrats to say that Obamacare is secure and we should stop talking about it, when the law has not even been fully implemented. The employer mandate, in particular, has been put off to 2015. Why do you think the Obama administration unlawfully deferred implementation of various major portions of the ACA? Obviously, because they knew the effects of those provisions would be unpopular. There is no way anyone can assess the impacts of Obamacare, let alone declare it a success, when an element of the law as important as the employer mandate has not even taken effect. [Snip]  So, beginning in late 2014 and continuing through 2015 and 2016, tens of millions of Americans will lose their group health insurance entirely, or else see it become more expensive. Millions will be thrown onto the exchanges, which the Obama administration will no doubt trumpet as another great victory. Whether the millions whose health care arrangements have been disrupted will share that view is doubtful. So, to those who say Obamacare is riding low in the polls, I say: you ain’t seen nothing yet.” MOVE ON? NOT JUST YET

Hiding behind numbers. “There are still key details that the White House hasn’t included in past enrollment announcements, and it didn’t this time either. The numbers still don’t say how many of the 8 million people have paid their premiums, because they’re not officially enrolled until they’ve paid. The best estimates from the insurance industry have suggested that anywhere from 15 percent to 20 percent haven’t paid yet, though at least some of those have been trying and some will likely settle their bills. And the numbers still don’t tell us how many of the new customers were uninsured before, and how many were just swapping out one health insurance plan for another. In fact, the Obama administration didn’t release a full enrollment report on Thursday, as was widely expected. Instead, it just circulated the topline figures in the White House fact sheet, which gave health care experts — and the critics — less information to go on.” Obama spikes the football

They deserve to lose, and lose by a whole heck of a lot. “’We will lose seats in the House,” the plain-talking South Boston Democrat said in Boston Herald Radio’s studio yesterday, delivering a harsh diagnosis. “I am fairly certain of that based on the poll numbers that are coming out from the more experienced pollsters down there. And I think we may lose the Senate. I think that’s a possibility if things continue to go the way they have been … primarily because of health care.’” U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch on Obamacare’s election toll: It’ll bury Dems

President Obama

Our petulant president. “President Barack Obama used his Thursday press conference to diagnose Republicans as fear-mongering, spiteful, obstinate, petulant and obstructive, as he again declared mission-accomplished in his effort to put the nation’s health-care under government control.” Obama offers new insults, then laments gridlock

“’Look, it’s working in that it exists. It breathes. But if it’s hurting the doctor, it’s hurting the hospital, it’s hurting the patient, it’s hurting the economy, it’s going to cost a fortune. I love the way the president says health care costs are reduced, as if there is any relationship between a reduction which occurred during a recession and a health care implementation which occurs today. So it couldn’t possibly have retroactively affected last year’s numbers. I mean, he makes this stuff up with the brazenness that is almost admirable.’” Krauthammer Destroys Obama’s Glowing ObamaCare Claims: ‘He Makes This Stuff Up’

War on Women

The Left’s war on conservative women. “Martinez, who emerged at the 2012 Republican National Convention as a new GOP star, is the subject of a profile in Mother Jones this week that deliberately encourages its leftist audience to believe that the governor is “the next Sarah Palin.” As such, it subjects her to the sort of dumpster dive for trivial faults or weaknesses that is recognizable to anyone who followed the assault on Palin. But while Martinez may not be quite ready to think about the White House, liberals who think she can be “Palinized” may be barking up the wrong tree. Though her position is, in some respects, similar to Palin’s in that she is a small-state governor who has yet to experience the rigors of a national press inquisition, the irony of the magazine piece is that it may show that she is exactly the kind of tough-minded pol who can’t be wrong-footed by this kind of smear.” Martinez and the War on GOP Women

Contrary to what most folks believe, women are not that into President Obama. “A closer look at the numbers reveals that Mr. Obama’s success with the ladies actually stemmed from his well-known appeal to minority voters. In 2012, 72% of all women voters identified themselves as “white.” This subset preferred Mitt Romney by a crushing 14-point advantage, 56% to 42%. Though Democrats ratcheted up the women’s rhetoric in the run-up to Election Day, the party did poorly among the white women it sought to influence: The Republican advantage in this crucial segment of the electorate doubled to 14 points in 2012 from seven points in 2008. In the race against Mr. Romney, Obama carried the overall female vote—and with it the election—based solely on his success with the 28% of women voters who identified as nonwhite. He carried 76% of Latina women and a startling 96% of black women.” The ‘War on Women’ Failed in 2012: And there’s no reason to believe it will work in 2014. The exit polls tell the real story.

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