Category Archives: 2014 Elections

News and Commentary for February 11

It's National "Make a Friend" Day. Find a friend to join Palo Verde Republican Women!

It’s National “Make a Friend” Day. Find a friend to join Palo Verde Republican Women!

I’ve been on the road and had little time to post, but I’ve been collecting a bunch of articles for your perusal. Here they are. Back to regular posting beginning tomorrow.

Stories of the Day

It’s about time! “At an after-hours hacking event at Microsoft’s headquarters in Redmond, Wash., Aaron Ginn approached an engineer whose face was buried in a laptop. Like more than a few techies, Mr. Ginn could pass for a skateboarder or a member of a boy band: As he circulated, he wore a red Reebok cap, its bill tilted high over his short dark hair, a silver and black cross around his neck and a green T-shirt printed with “Lincoln Labs.” That’s the name of the talent-scouting group he founded last year with two friends. But unlike others in this game, Mr. Ginn was in search of a rare technology-industry breed: Republicans.” Republicans Are Wooing the Wired Hat Tip: The Dennis Prager radio show on Monday, February 10th.

Fighting back. “But know this, my experiences at the hands of this government in these last five years have made me more determined than ever to stand before you and America and say I will not retreat. I will not surrender. I refuse to be intimidated. I will not ask for permission to exercise my Constitutional rights.” America’s Latest Heroine Fights Back

Dr. Ben Carson is a genius. Read the whole thing (emphasis mine)! “In the game of chess, pawns are just used for the purposes of the royal pieces. In real life, many in power selfishly use “pawns” — average citizens — while at the same time vociferously proclaiming that they are the only ones looking out for the interests of the pawns, who happily follow their commands, thinking that this “royal” contingent has their interests in mind. However, in a chess game, a pawn can become any one of the royal pieces, if it can make it to the other side of the board. The opponent will do almost anything to keep one from reaching its goal, because that would interfere with the power structure. If they can keep the pawns on their side of the board, where it is much safer, the status quo can be maintained. Although no analogy is perfect, it is pretty easy to see the point here. By keeping large groups of Americans complacent and afraid of challenging authority, the position, wealth and status of those in power is secure. The last thing they want is for independent-thinking citizens to realize that this country was designed for them and not for an arrogant ruling class. They dread the possibility of people scrutinizing their words and deeds, and holding them accountable for the same. By using strong-arm tactics and a sheepishly compliant news media, the supposed guardians of truth, they have become very successful at pawn control.Thinking for Ourselves: The Rewards of Independence and Common Sense Are Many

The hits just keep on coming. “Unfortunately for the president and Democratic incumbents, the sheer number of ObamaCare exemptions and delays has grown to the point where it is no longer possible to pretend that the only problem with the law was a glitch-ridden website or Republican obstructionism. No matter how many of its ill-conceived moving parts the presidential orders say need not be implemented before November, the accumulated weight of its failure may prove too heavy a burden for Democrats who must answer to the electorate for their votes to shove this monstrosity down the collective throat of the American people.” More ObamaCare Delays Won’t Save Dems

Amnesty

Priorities. “Not only did he issue the new rule but he made it a top priority for Citizenship and Immigration Services, so much so that other routine but important business, like approving green cards for the spouses of American citizens, had to wait. And wait. And wait. And wait.” U.S. citizens forced to wait to reunite with foreign-born spouses as Obama’s DREAM amnesty takes precedence

Big Government

Fuzzy economics. “The unemployment rate fell in January, which ought to be good news. But it isn’t. Over the past decade we’ve fallen into a strange and puzzling wonderland of opposites, where “economic recovery” comes with no growth and unemployment rates drop but people aren’t working.” EDITORIAL: Obama in unemployment wonderland

Class Warfare

Liberal policies leading to increased income disparity. Anyone shocked? “Neither the American tax code nor other features of our economic policy are notably generous to high-income and high-wealth people by the standards of the developed world. American businesses labor under the highest business income-tax rate in the world and one of the business tax codes most riddled with political favoritism. At 40 percent — compared with an OECD average of 25 percent — our business income-tax rate is nearly double that of Sweden, and more than twice that of Switzerland, which does not tax capital gains. Our top personal income-tax rate is higher than that of New Zealand, which manages to finance an effective national government out of the proceeds, and much higher than that of very competitive countries such as Singapore. Taken together, our tax and entitlement systems are about as redistributive as typical European welfare states. What is unusual about the United States is not that the rich are taxed so lightly but that the middle class is taxed so lightly, at least relative to European practice. Which is to say, those who endorse policies such as higher taxes on the wealthy as an antidote to income inequality are missing the picture. The American rich are not getting richer because of the American tax code. Income inequality in the United States is increasing. It is also increasing in Sweden. And Norway. And Finland. And the Netherlands. And Canada. And Germany. Pick your European welfare state and throw in Japan, too, and you’ll find much the same story.” The Tyranny of Winter: The Left is at War with Economic Reality

Cronyism

Flip-flopping for the money. “In other words, Salazar was happy to be part of an administration that’s done everything it can to block energy development and particularly the Keystone pipeline… but now that he’s employed by those with different priorities, he is happy to flip flop. I wonder whatever that “new information” could be that made Salazar change his mind. Was it “you’re hired”?” Want A Government Official To Change His Mind? Hire Him!

The Economy

Hunger Games comes to the U.S.A.! Gallup: Only “state” with positive economic confidence is … Washington DC

What the Left has wrought. The progressive message worked on me— my husband and I have one child—at the time I thought I was saving the planet. This: “Ultimately the size of the US economy is simply the total of what we’re all spending. Overall household spending hits a high when we’re about 46. So the peak of the Baby Boom (1961) plus 46 suggests that a high point in the US economy should be about 2007, with a long, slow decline to follow for years to come.” And this: “Implicitly, Dent is saying: Don’t blame politicians, the decline of manufacturing, education or cheap foreign imports for the economic stagnation that has already begun and will continue for many years. Blame your parents and grandparents for losing interest in having children back in the Sixties.” Aging America heading for disaster

Education

While the rest of us are sleeping… Or too busy to get off the couch to do anything about it… This: “In 2012, terrorist and activist Chicago professor Bill Ayers told his followers that the left had “absolute access to the community, the school… the classroom,” and that is where it should do its “movement-building.” And this: ““The message going out to students is that government is good, big government is good, Obama is good, the president’s doing a good job,” Schneider added. “Some of the curriculum publishing companies are also creating the Common Core assessments.”” Common Core: How The Left Will Grow Its Power in America’s Schools

Elections

Oh goody. More free stuff to offer the folks. “But discontent is brewing within the Democratic Party over what some see as Mr. Obama’s concessions to Republicans. Those Democratic voters will be looking for candidates willing to slide further to the left, especially on economic issues.” Democrats will dive left in 2016 to distance themselves from Obama

An interesting read. “And then there is Democratic politics, which is not merely just debased political philosophy but degenerate political philosophy. I say this because of Jay Cost’s argument that the Democratic party is now almost entirely an organization of client service. That is to say, there is hardly any “principle” in it anymore, except that one group wants this from the government, and another group wants that. The Tea Party is currently, I think, a movement not of politics but of political philosophy. And that is both good and bad. It is good because they can afford to be more simon-pure about the precise philosophy they urge. It is, however, bad, if one would hope (as I do) that they can become a large enough political force (not merely a philosophical advocacy force) to either dominate the GOP or displace it entirely.” Some Thoughts on the Tea Party and the Evolution of Political Parties

Hillary

What difference does it make? This: “Voters admired the strength of the Arkansas first couple, the pollsters wrote. However, “they also fear that only someone too politically ambitious, too strong, and too ruthless could survive such controversy so well.” And this: “The full contents of the archive, which before 2010 was closed to the public, have not previously been reported on and shed new light on Clinton’s three decades in public life. The records paint a complex portrait of Hillary Clinton, revealing her to be a loyal friend, devoted mother, and a cutthroat strategist who relished revenge against her adversaries and complained in private that nobody in the White House was “tough and mean enough.”” The Hillary Papers: Archive of ‘closest friend’ paints portrait of ruthless First Lady

The IRS

Flailing. This: “This is really quite the novel approach to the IRS targeting scandal by congressional Democrats. Seeking to change the narrative in order to get on top of scandal, Democrats have hit upon the idea to blame the IRS Inspector General, Russell George, for the scandal getting out of hand. How do they figure that? It appears that many Democrats were unhappy with Mr. George’s initial report on the scandal, believing it to be “misleading.” Mmmkay, whatever. But now they’ve got a mind to file an ethics complaint against George because they think he is conspiring with Darrell Issa’s oversight committee to make the Democrats look bad and the IRS scandal worse than it really is.” And this: “The Obama administration has well-documented problems with assertive inspector generals, so this kind of pushback is to be expected from Hill Democrats. It’s an attempt to smear the IRS inspector general and only shows how desperate the Democrats have become. It’s a hail mary pass that is going to fall incomplete in the end zone.” Dems Trying to Blame IRS IG for Targeting Scandal

The Left

Waking up to reality—it must be painful to be a Liberal sometimes. “There is also an underlying unwillingness to consider that some groups have values that are less functional than other groups. Let me be clear: values are changeable, and mass values do change over time. But the consciousness that healthy foods are important to good overall health is still mainly a preoccupation of the upper middle classes in the United States. Sometimes it is necessary to recognize that a change in values among groups designated as victims is the best thing one can do to help them. And, that realization is now dawning on the food desert crowd.” ‘Food desert’ fallacy shocks liberals

“IF THEY WILL WORK?” Note the word IF. “Opportunity created by affordable, quality health insurance allows families in America to make a decision about how they will work, or if they will work,” Jay Carney said. Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi applauded the law for freeing people from “job-lock.” Obama Democrats’ troubling view on work

Air heads. “This week the big story was the tag end of the old JournoList gang trying to spin gold out of the dross of the Congressional Budget Report. The CBO report projected that by 2021 under ObamaCare more than 2 million full-time workers will find it financially advisable to quit work entirely or switch to part-time jobs in order to get more subsidies for healthcare insurance. To most of us who studied real economics or just paid attention to human nature, subsidizing indolence means you’ll get more of it.” Demonomics

Liberal La La Land. “The problem with Team Lightbringer is that they have spent so much time bathing in the warm waters of the sycophant pool that they have begun to believe their own spin. This is a highly functional political machine that is fueled by nothing but emotion. This is scary enough when it’s a ploy;when it becomes the sole basis for policy, it will inevitably be catastrophic. Because math isn’t swayed by emotion.” The Disturbing Essence of What Is Really Wrong with the White House Spin of CBO Report

Obamacare

Lies. “This is not an isolated incident…The exclusion of a major provider like Seattle Children’s from a major insurance network in this market is unprecedented…we’re seeing denials in care, disruptions in care; we’re seeing a great deal of confusion and, at times, anger and frustration on the part of these families who bought insurance thinking that their children would be covered.  And they’ve in fact found that it’s a false promise.” CBS News: Meet the sick children getting hosed by Obamacare

There’s so much in this article that it was hard to pick a section to call out, so I recommend that you read the whole thing. “Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion doesn’t just discourage work; it also prioritizes coverage for able-bodied adults over the needs of persons with disabilities. That’s a dirty little secret the Obama administration and its liberal allies, in their rush to expand government-funded health coverage to millions more Americans, won’t tell you. And it’s yet another reason why states should resist the siren song of the administration and its leftist supporters, who plan to spend 2014 persuading them to embrace the expansion.” Obamacare Is Anything But Compassionate

For progressives, the end always justifies the means. “Each passing day is more incriminating for President Obama‘s Obamacare, as the news is like a relentless prosecutor amassing evidence against a serial killer. Yet the more evidence that rolls in condemning the president’s “signature achievement” — wouldn’t you love to have that albatross hung around your epitaph? — the more entrenched Obama becomes, making clear that his heart is not with the American people or their needs but stubbornly fixated on self. His singular goal is not to provide “affordable health care” but to slay those who are trying to take his “baby” away from him, with the deranged obsession of Captain Ahab.” Socialism, not access to health care, is Obama’s prize

President Obama

Living in his own progressive bubble. “Some of the policies that Obama kept insisting were neither liberal nor conservative, neither Democrat nor Republican, included raising the minimum wage, raising taxes and yet another stimulus plan. These policies may be archetypically liberal, but Obama carries his own reality with him, his own mathematics, his own history, his own dictionary and his own moral code which he adapts to the moment.” Obama Lied With Every Word

Folks, as crazy as it sounds, we’ve got three more years of this. “Claiming an American president is not trustworthy ruins whatever credibility he brought to the office and this president brought a lot. Most people wanted to believe in him and a large majority did believe in him at the start. Many no longer do, as his declining approval ratings demonstrate. In dealing with the Soviet Union, Ronald Reagan employed a Russian proverb, “trust but verify.” Boehner and the Republicans seem to be saying there is no need to verify with this president, because he can’t be trusted. The inability by a major party to trust a president is more than lamentable; it is not good for the country and our standing before other nations and groups that wish to do us harm.” It’s not good to have a president who can’t be trusted

Terrorism

There have been no arrests! “According to a Wall Street Journal report last week, at about 1 a.m. on that April 16, someone cut the telephone lines going to the substation’s location in a manner calculated to be hard to repair. Within about another thirty minutes, shooters took positions by the stone piles and — on a flashlight signal — opened fire. The firing — over about a twenty-minute period, apparently using AK-47 rifles (identified by the empty shell casings in 7.62×39 caliber left behind) — aimed 120 shots at the cooling fins on the transformers, scoring 110 hits. Another flashlight signal called a cease-fire. The shooters were gone long before the first police arrived.” Low Tech Terror on the Grid: Why the terror attack in Silicon Valley?

Scary. This: “Obama could not have picked a worse time to ease immigration requirements for those linked to terror, and who have nowhere else to go and have suddenly found themselves, after the counter-revolution in Egypt, as targets for imprisonment, contempt, or even shooting.” And this: If this situation continues, the American people will wake up one day with Muslim-only zones across the US, women and gays harassed and persecuted in every US city that will be prone Chechnya-style terrorism and calls for a separatist movement. This is the history of Islam repeating itself wherever it goes.” Jihad Migrating to Red States — With Obama’s Blessing

The War on Women

OMG. So true. “A useful definition is this: “Feminism is the words ‘I Want!’ in the mouths of three or more women, provided they’re the right kind of women.” Feminism must therefore accommodate wildly incompatible propositions — e.g., (1) Women unquestionably belong alongside men in Marine units fighting pitched battles in Tora Bora but (2) really should not be expected to be able to perform three chin-ups. Or: (1) Women at Columbia are empowered by pornography but (2) women at Wellesley are victimized by a statue of a man sleepwalking in his Shenanigans. And then there is Fluke’s Law: (1) Women are responsible moral agents with full sexual and economic autonomy who (2) must be given an allowance, like children, when it comes to contraceptives.” The Feminist Mystique

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Filed under 2014 Elections, Amnesty, Big Government, Class Warfare, Cronyism, Economy, Education, GOP, Hillary, Income Inequality, IRS, Lies, Middle Class, National News, Obamacare, President Obama, Socialism, Tea Party, Terrorism, The Left, War on Women, We the People

News and Commentary for February 6

Happy Birthday President Reagan. Oh how we miss you.

Happy Birthday President Reagan. Oh how we miss you.

Story of the Day

Misguided. “In a lovely illustration of the truism that progressives really haven’t the slightest clue what it is that conservatives believe, the Huffington Post’s Senior Congressional Reporter, Michael McAuliff, spoke for the cabal, suggesting ludicrously that,

“There’s an irony in the GOP complaining that ACA lets people quit jobs. I mean, what’s wrong with freedom?”

To answer a remarkably misguided rhetorical question, there is nothing at all “wrong with freedom.” As Patrick Henry rightly argued, above all other things “liberty ought to be the direct end” of government, for, after that, everything else is mere indulgence. But there is an awful lot “wrong” with using the word “freedom” where it does not apply. After all, it is one thing for a person to choose not to work and to accept the natural consequences of that decision, but quite another indeed for a person to choose not to work because others are being forced to subsidize his well-being. One can reasonably attest that redistributing wealth to underwrite preferred social outcomes is “necessary” or “virtuous” or “kind” or “practical” — or even, more cynically, that it is the inexorable end product of a democratic system in which one man can vote himself the contents of another’s wallet. But one cannot claim that it makes either man “free” — at least not without twisting the word and the concept that it represents beyond all meaningful recognition.” Obamacare’s Attack on the Work Ethic: Changing people’s incentives doesn’t make them freer

Afghanistan

Ineptitude. “Failed Diplomacy: Would you rather deal with mass murderers or incompetents? The Afghan government chose the Taliban over the Obama administration, but in the end both Afghanistan and the U.S. got rolled. Just 12 years after American forces’ historic liberation of Afghanistan in the weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the very same bloodthirsty Taliban we ousted, still fully committed to terrorist jihad and Shariah law, are on a short path back into power.” Taliban Played Obama And Afghan President For Fools

Big Government

Wasting our hard-earned tax dollars, one dollar at time. “President Obama’s Department of Labor appointees have shaken things up at the Department, but probably not in ways you would expect. An investigation of DOL practices reveals that Obama appointees are wasting time and resources with public-relations busy work, weird morale-boosting exercises, and many other activities that have nothing to do with helping U.S. workers. [snip] Four DOL insiders agreed to be quoted by NRO while others provided additional details and corroboration. All requested anonymity and expressed fear of retaliation. All described a workplace where pressure to join in time- and money-wasting activities unrelated to job tasks was subtle but insistent.” Wasteful High Jinks at the Labor Department: Staffers slam DOL busy work, propaganda, and favoritism. 

They’re coming for your private dinner parties next. “Good news! Today both cooks and diners can get what they want. A new Internet business brings them together. Bad news: Bureaucrats and the media worry that the dinner parties are not regulated. [snip] But most of the regulation is useless. It’s the need to maintain one’s reputation that does most to keep us safe — especially today, with instant feedback from the Internet. No clumsy government regulation is needed. Government (so far) doesn’t micromanage private dinner parties. Charging a fee shouldn’t make a difference. [snip] Government pretends it must have a place at the table, but free people ought to be able to eat without government permission.” Reputation Versus Regulation

Busted. “The Obama administration’s Treasury Department and former IRS official Lois Lerner conspired to draft new 501(c)(4) regulations to restrict the activity of conservative groups in a way that would not be disclosed publicly, according to the House Committee on Ways and Means.” Email: IRS’s Lerner, Treasury Department secretly drafted new rules to restrict nonprofits

Not a smidgen. “The document, an email from Treasury Department tax policy attorney Ruth Madrigal to a group of IRS officials including the disgraced Lois Lerner. ‘Don’t know who in your organizations is keeping tabs on c4s,’ Madrigal wrote, quoting an election law blog and referring to the 501(c)(4) tax-exempt groups that were the subject of the tea party targeting scandal, ‘but since we mentioned potentially addressing them (off plan) in 2013, I’ve got my radar up and this seemed interesting.” IRS planned secret new rules to justify targeting tea party groups two years ago, reveals bombshell email

If it’s such a phony scandal, without a SMIDGEN of credibility, then why the apology? “The new head of the IRS has apologized to those who suffered because of the agency’s targeting of conservative groups, after he testified before a House subcommittee for the first time. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen told reporters after the hearing before the House Ways and Means Committee that the singling out of such organizations for special scrutiny would be “intolerable,” and vowed the IRS is not doing so now. ‘It won’t happen going forward,” Koskinen said. “And to the extent that people suffered accordingly, I apologize for that.’” New IRS chief apologizes to targeted conservative groups after House hearing

Simple solution: simplify the tax code Mr. President. “Mr. Obama wants Americans to believe that the targeting resulted from the confusing tax law governing nonprofits, which he says was “difficult” to interpret and resulted in mere “bureaucratic” mistakes. This is also the Administration’s justification for issuing new regulations governing 501(c)(4)s that would effectively silence White House opponents this election year. Published in the Federal Register in November, the new rules cite the “lack of a clear and concise” regulation as reason for the rewrite.” Obama’s IRS ‘Confusion:’ New evidence undercuts White House claims about IRS motivation

Climate Change

Creating mass hysteria for more control over the “little people.” “A favorite progressive pastime is to highlight the rubes who look out of their windows and make grand pronouncements about trends based solely on the weather that afternoon. “Weather is not climate,” they scream, rolling their eyes and muttering about science-with-a-capital-S. This is correct; weather is not the same as climate. But neither is every serious catastrophe that befalls mankind indicative of the end times, requiring of presidential intervention, and attributable to the bogeyman du jour — however dramatic the special effects in the monster flick might turn out to be.” Don’t Blame Climate Change

Education

Comments from a long time teacher. “Enter Common Core. Yes, it must be stopped, but stopping it won’t make things better; it will only put the brakes on education’s downward spiral. What’s needed to rectify the situation is a complete attitude adjustment. We have to face that fact that not everyone is equally a teacher and that not all kids are equally students. Both parents and schools must work together to provide an equal chance for every child to become an educated person, and that chance has be centered on consistent opportunity for contact with excellent teachers, teachers who can stand on their own success and don’t have to be propped up by a union, teachers who are attracted by the respect, both emotional and financial, that the society affords them.” Common Core and Unionitis

Elections

Ultimately both parties will oppose this, but I think it’s about time. “The bill would limit members of Congress—in both the House and the Senate—from serving more than 12 years in either chamber, or 24 years total between the two chambers. “Believe me, 24 years is more than enough time to serve in Washington,” Mulvaney said in a statement.” Rep. Mulvaney Introduces Congressional Term Limits Bill

Income Inequality

What a lot of us REALLY resent. “For practical purposes, people don’t live in the United States of America. They live in their neighborhoods, towns and communities. Yes, these are American communities, but your neighbors live in your neighborhood, not seven states over. Your kids don’t go to “U.S. schools”; they go to the school down the road. Yet most of our money goes to the government in Washington, and so does most of the power. Why not flip that around? Want to see the rich, poor and middle class interact more? Give them a reason to show up to a city council or school board meeting. Sure, money has power at the local level, too, but so do votes. Moreover, when rich people get their way at the local level, people usually know who they are and why they are doing things. And you can bend their ear at the supermarket or at soccer practice. But when all the decisions are made in Washington or New York, most Americans are simply out of the loop. And they resent it.” Think Power Inequality

The Left

But they’re so much smarter than the rest of us! “Apparently, Pacific-corridor residents from San Diego to Berkeley had acquired the affluence not to worry so much about the old Neanderthal concerns like keeping up freeways and airports — and their parents’ brilliantly designed system of canals, reservoirs, and dams that had turned their state from a natural desert into a man-made paradise. They have become similar to the rarified Eloi of science-fiction writer H. G. Wells’s The Time Machine, who live dreamy existences without any clue how to supply their own daily necessities. Californians have not built a major reservoir since the New Melones Dam more than 30 years ago. As the state subsequently added almost 20 million people, it assumed that it was exempt from creating any more “unnatural” Sierra lakes and canals to store precious water during California’s rarer wet and snow-filled years.” California’s Two Droughts: An affluent society didn’t bother to add to the inherited system of canals and reservoirs that made it thrive.

They must think that money grows on trees. “Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel is increasingly a textbook example of how far the Democratic party has moved to the left since Bill Clinton’s day. Emanuel, who cut his teeth in Clinton’s administration, just presided over a $1.9 billion increase in Chicago’s debt, only months after Moody’s downgraded the city’s bond ratings three notches based on its growing and unsustainable spending and debt obligations. Supported by a supine city council, Emanuel has just tacked another mountain of borrowing onto what the city already has to do, split almost evenly between unspecified “general obligations” and bonds for Midway Airport. All told, according to the Chicago Sun-Times, the Windy City has $29 billion in long-term debt. When challenged on the most recent round of borrowing, Emanuel dismissed the questions, comparing the city to “a lot of families” who refinance their homes.” Chicago Votes to Go the Way of Detroit

Obamacare

“The CBO report noted that the health care law’s insurance subsidies are gradually taken away as income rises, “creating an implicit tax on additional earnings.” Dr. Gottlieb said that means some middle-class and lower-income people will decide that the government subsidies are more attractive than working more and paying higher taxes. “They’re going to lose more in subsidies than it’s worth what they’re making in income,” he said. “So it remakes the whole wage-labor relationship, and that’s what I think CBO is starting to recognize. We’ve never subsidized the middle class like this. This is going to have a much different effect on the labor force than anything we’ve ever done.” Specter of welfare state jolts Democrats; CBO hits election pitches for jobs

“CBO’s analysis is rooted in ObamaCare’s complex design that includes new subsidies, taxes and mandates. For low-wage, lower-skilled or discouraged workers in particular, ObamaCare offers incentives that can force them to trade jobs for entitlement benefits.” The Jobless Care Act

“We seem to recall a time when the country’s leaders celebrated things like drive, determination, hard work and the desire for a better life even if it meant facing long odds and tall challenges. Now they’re cheering for a law because it will encourage, if not force, able-bodied workers to quit their jobs, cut their hours and become still more dependent on the federal government.” The Left’s Lamest Defense Of ObamaCare Yet

Olympics

I couldn’t stop laughing at this U.S. sports journalist’s tweet. “To anyone in Sochi: I am now in possession of three light bulbs. Will trade for door knob handle. This offer is real.” And the gold medal for the most vile thing at Sochi goes to . . .? (Clue: it’s not Putin) Olympic visitors’ horror at hotels awash with stray dogs, brown water, bugs and no light bulbs

President Obama

Haters gonna hate, not legislate.” “Instead, he declared O’Reilly “unfair” in a peevish and tired answer that, if he believes it’s true, is an indictment of his own decisions and those of the staff booking this interview. He had an opportunity to communicate with a giant swath of the country that does not agree with him, with a huge assist from a host who does, on a legislative goal he could conceivably accomplish. He knew O’Reilly agreed with him on this issue and mentioned it in passing during a more contentious part of the interview, but this was an obvious chance to give the pitch and close the deal. The folks are watching! Convince them! For all the hype about Obama’s oratory skills, his persuasion skills in anything other than a presidential election leave much to be desired.” Another whiny answer about Fox in the O’Reilly interview is what’s wrong with Obama’s presidency

We can only hope. “A couple of cautionary notes are in order. Obama has been a veritable Fran Tarkenton as an escape artist (apologies to Tarkenton, a solid conservative), and he has a powerful offensive line, the news media, running interference for him. If only the GOP were as effective as the Seattle Seahawks defense! At this point, while reality does seem to be closing in on Obama, the whistle has not yet blown, and the play is not over.” Is Obama About To Be Sacked?

Just a little reminder as to where Obama started his political career. “Back in 1996, Obama was one of three hothouse flowers groomed and watered until he bloomed by the Chicago Socialist Party. It was the the Socialist Party in Chicago (called the “New Party”) that helped launch and finance Obama’s political career, taking him off the streets where he was a Community Organizer and putting him in public office for the first time. There is nothing to misread about Obama’s political stripe. [snip] For sure, Obama is not the only activist trying to bring America under the brutal heel of Marxism. It’s worse, because he’s the only thoroughly Marxist activist who made it twice to the White House presidency where he continues to deliberately crush America and the Free West that depends on it.” Can a Marxist who wants to take down the Free West really be “not a bad guy”?

Terrorism

Yikes! “An attack on California electrical transformers in April is believed by some to be a practice round for a terrorist attack on the U.S. power grid. The coordinated attack began outside of Silicon Valley where attackers cut telephone wires at 1 a.m. on April 16, according to the Wall Street Journal. About half an hour later snipers shot at an electrical substation for about 19 minutes, destroying 17 transformers in the process. The attackers escaped before police arrived and remain at large.” Attack on a California Transformer Could Have Been Dress Rehearsal for Terror Attack on Power Grid

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Filed under 2014 Elections, Afghanistan, Big Government, Climate Change, Education, Incomce Inequality, Obamacare, Olympics, President Obama, Story of the Day, Terrorism, The Left

News and Commentary for February 4

Keep your ears open. There's a lot going on and we have to help explain it to those who aren't paying attention.

Keep your ears open. There’s a lot going on and we have to help explain it to those who aren’t paying attention.

Story of the Day

We really are in the best of hands. “U.S. intelligence agencies last week urged the Obama administration to check its new healthcare network for malicious software after learning that developers linked to the Belarus government helped produce the website, raising fresh concerns that private data posted by millions of Americans will be compromised.” The Belarusian Connection

Arizona Politics

Oldie, but worth a re-look as we get closer to August primaries. And what the heck is a “Prada socialist?” “And she discusses her seven pairs of glasses and her wardrobe, describing herself as “a Prada socialist,’’ saying people can still believe in fairness and justice ‘and still have fabulous accessories.’” Gay marriage debate sparks a feminism battle

Amnesty

Collapsing. “Entitlements: ObamaCare is already a fiscal nightmare for the country. Now Democrats, and even some Republicans, want to expand it to ruinous levels by making 12 million illegals eligible for subsidies. Adding these largely poor immigrants to the state health exchanges and Medicaid rolls threatens to explode the $2 trillion cost of ObamaCare by another $210 billion to $300 billion over the next 10 years, according to the Senate Budget Committee.” If You Liked Health Reform, You’ll Love Immigration Reform

Benghazi

Drip, drip, drip. “Former CIA Director Mike Morell may have altered the Benghazi talking points to benefit the Obama administration during the 2012 election, Catherine Herridge of Fox News reports.” Herridge: Fmr. CIA Director Morell May Have Altered Benghazi Talking Points to Benefit Obama Admin.

Big Government

“In January 2014, the Obama donor appointed to “investigate” the abuse declined to bring any charges against anyone, which leads to the question: Why did Lois Lerner take the Fifth? If there were no crimes committed, how could Lerner incriminate herself?” Obama: ‘Not a Smidgeon’ of Corruption in IRS Abuse

“Obama is just the extreme version of a widespread belief among many in both parties that an enormous, intrusive federal regulatory and redistributionist regime is necessary for “solving problems” that in fact are best left to individuals and state and local government. The only argument between the parties these days is over the amount and pace of expansion––spending, for example, $800 billion on food stamps over the next decade rather than $808 billion. This belief in problem-solving big government is more insidious and thus in the long run more dangerous than Obama’s ‘pen and phone.’” Executive Tyranny: The Problem’s Bigger Than Obama

I think we should all work in the government. It’s much more lucrative. “The IRS’ announcement Monday that it will pay cancelled 2013 bonuses has infuriated Utah Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch, who wants to know why an agency with employees who “inappropriately” targeted conservative political groups would reinstate the rewards.” Senator rebukes IRS over decision to reinstate 2013 employee bonuses

Class Warfare

This: “Two phenomena: anti-Semitism and American class conflict. Is there any connection between them? In a letter to this newspaper, the noted venture capitalist Tom Perkins called attention to certain parallels, as he saw them, between Nazi Germany’s war against the Jews and American progressives’ war on the “one percent.” For comparing two such historically disparate societies, Mr. Perkins was promptly and heatedly denounced. But is there something to be said for his comparison—not of Germany and the United States, of course, but of the politics at work in the two situations? The place to begin is at the starting point: with the rise of anti-Semitism, modernity’s most successful and least understood political movement.” And this: Herein lies a deeper structural connection. On the global front today, the much larger and more obvious beneficiary of those same blessings is the democratic capitalist system of the United States, and the ultimate target of the ultimate negative campaign is the American people. Anyone seeking to understand the inner workings of such a campaign will find much food for thought in Mr. Perkins’s parallel.” Ruth Wisse: The Dark Side of the War on ‘the One Percent:’ Stoking class envy is a step in a familiar, dangerous and highly incendiary process.

Education

Maintaining the Education Plantation. “After Barack Obama gave a thousand campaign speeches on Iraq, Guantanamo Bay, and the economy, one of his first actions upon taking office as president was to begin gutting a tiny school-choice scholarship program in Washington, D.C. And now newly inaugurated New York mayor Bill de Blasio has, as one of his first agenda items, begun the gutting of the city’s charter schools, which are public schools that operate with some limited measure of independence from the usual education bureaucracies. Like President Obama, Mayor de Blasio is here engaged in plain, naked payback, rewarding the teachers’ unions that funded and manned his campaign by taking hundreds of millions of dollars away from projects they despise. If a private city contractor had bankrolled the mayor’s campaign and been repaid by having him hobble its competition, we’d call it simple corruption. And it is simple corruption, legal though it may be.” Save the Charter Schools

Elections

“The Republican plan for granting legalization up front, while withholding citizenship, is too clever by half. It is like saying that you can slide halfway down a slippery slope. Republicans may yet rescue the Democrats while demoralizing their own supporters and utterly failing the country.” GOP Could Blow 2014 Election With Unwise Push For Amnesty

Interesting history lesson. This: Henry Waxman and George Miller are retiring from the House and not running for re-election after 40 years as a congressmen from southern and northern California. Also retiring and not running for re-election is Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa. Senator Max Baucus of Montana will resign if, as expected, he is confirmed as ambassador to China. Both were first elected to the House in 1974 and were later elected to the Senate. These four are just about the last members serving in Congress of the 75 Democrats first elected to the House in the Watergate year of 1974. And this: “The Class of 1974 also shifted the House and the congressional Democratic party from hawkish to dovish. One of its first acts in March 1975 was to block funding for South Vietnam when it was under attack by the North. Saigon fell in April. In the 1980s the Democratic House kept pushing back on Reagan foreign policy. In 2002, Nancy Pelosi, who holds the seat once held by Phil Burton, led most House Democrats to oppose the Iraq war resolution. Pelosi says she is staying on, even as her ally Waxman and her consigliere Miller leave the House. The 201-member caucus she leads has more black and Hispanic members and fewer young doves and reformers than the 291-member caucus Waxman and Miller entered nearly 40 year ago. Still, the Class of 1974 has left a mark on history — though not as much as one Democrat who narrowly lost a House race that year, a 28-year-old Arkansan named Bill Clinton.” The Democratic class of 1974 passes from the scene

Freedom

What the hell is happening in our country? “The House Armed Services Committee hearing focused on religious liberty, following growing reports of discrimination and reprisals against soldiers who expressed or practiced their religious beliefs, in particular Christian military members. The statement included information about the Restore Military Religious Freedom Coalition, a group of 23 non-profit organizations, which documented examples of those discrimination reports, including an officer who was ordered to remove a Bible from his desk so as not to offend anyone, and an Army chaplain’s assistant who was ordered to remove a social media post that expressed her own religious and moral views.” Gen. Boykin to Congress: Religious Liberty Must Be Affirmed, Cherished in Military

Foreign Policy

Weak. “Whether all these incidents are minor or serious, and whether they are random or interconnected and perceived as proof of the loss of U.S. deterrence, depends on which particular bad actor is studying them to try to guess whether the Obama administration will do anything should a provocateur start a war or attempt to redraw a regional map. In short, our Icarus-in-Chief, without much foreign-policy experience but with youthful zeal and good intentions, soared far too high for his flimsy waxen wings. Now they are melting, and as the American commander-in-chief careens back to earth, lots of those below are wondering what will come next. Still, there is a lot of irony as Obama freefalls to earth.” Our Icarus-in-Chief: Obama’s global fantasies are falling to earth along with him.

The Left

This: “During the 1950s, American society saw a great expansion of the middle class, with rising incomes and rates of home ownership. Rather than rejoicing over the large number of Americans who had escaped poverty, many liberals were torn. These days, there is a wave of nostalgia for the 1950s, but many commentators of the time saw it as a soul-deadening period of homogenization and middlebrow culture, of men in “flannel suits” who lived in ticky-tacky houses. Consumerism ran rampant while middle-class Americans were busy keeping up with the Joneses. A raft of clichés belittled the lives of middle-class Americans and tried to denigrate this era of economic progress.” And this: “Which brings us back to Obamacare. Its success or failure will ultimately hinge on whether middle-class Americans either benefit or are hurt by the new law. If the latter occurs, popular support will continue to plummet, and Democrats will suffer. Modern liberalism makes claims to technocratic superiority, believing that enlightened elites can make choices in a planned economy on behalf of the benighted. That proposition is being tested in the health care debate, but its fate will ultimately be in the hands of middle-class Americans.” Opiate of the Elites

Big Government doesn’t work. This: “Obama will seek to overcome “disability” through executive orders—as in raising the minimum wage for federal contractors. Leaving aside increased unemployment from the effects of raising the minimum wage, the entire effort promises to be lost in a bureaucratic bog, with litigation lasting into the next administration. Having worked in an agency established by executive order, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), I can add from my own experience the confusion of trying to enforce civil rights on federal contractors. First of all, an executive order implements a federal law or a constitutional power—the most famous executive order being Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, based on Article II war powers. Obama’s action regarding a pay increase may be unconstitutional, for it may violate the statute that it implements, the Federal Property and Administrative Practices Act of 1949. And this: “A little while later, as we were leaving the Oval Office and walking under the colonnade, Obama said, “I just wanted to add one thing to that business about the great-man theory of history. The President of the United States cannot remake our society, and that’s probably a good thing.” He paused yet again, always self-editing. “Not ‘probably,’ ” he said. “It’s definitely a good thing.” One trusts as true the first-draft Obama more than his self-edited version.” Obama’s Left-Wing Foot

Michelle Obama

Whitewashing the truth of obesity. “Despite $4.5 billion in funding for the Let’s Move campaign, USDA hyper-regulations, and multiple executive actions created to influence personal habits, the government has little to show for its efforts. The declining obesity rates the president cites began years before Michelle Obama had any say, and there’s no indication that Let’s Move has greatly helped the process.” Let’s Move? Fat Chance

Obamacare

Is there ANYTHING working as it relates to Obamacare? “First, Amy Goldstein of  The Post reveals that the appeals process guaranteed in the Obamacare law does not actually exist. The story outlines an almost comical process that requires citizens who seek a fair hearing to have an innocent, HealthCare.gov-generated mistake corrected to fill out a seven-page paper form that is then inexplicably shipped to Kentucky, where it is entered into a government database that isn’t actually connected to anything. It’s a digital dead end for those who dare to complain. Typical. As a result, 22,000 Americans who have submitted an appeals request remain without proper coverage and they have no recourse. And, according to The Post, in the latest show of non-transparency from this administration, officials have “not made public the fact that the appeals system for the online marketplace is not working.” There is “no indication that infrastructure . . .  necessary for conducting informal reviews and fair hearings had even been created, let alone become operational,” and administration officials are refusing to give any information as to when the appeals process might start moving. This is an administration that wants to hide things rather than fix things.” The Insiders: Obamacare – The incompetence and denials keep coming

Run Scott, run! “New Hampshire is a good example of a state where the Obamacare disaster could make a Senate race unexpectedly competitive. Without Obamacare dragging her down, incumbent Jeanne Shaheen would be a prohibitive favorite for re-election. But a recent poll shows her in a dead heat with Scott Brown, who has moved to the state and is mulling the possibility of a run.” Obamacare In New Hampshire

“And, now to the video. This is fast-food fry cook Darnell Summers, who has been working with his union to get higher wages. He’s clearly pushing for a minimum wage raise, here, and President Obama is happy to talk about that. What he’s not happy to address is the part of the question where Summers notes he’s been knocked down to part time work because his employers are trying to avoid the expense of Obamacare. These are real people, who were promised far better than this, being hurt by a law that was supposed to help them. They are not figments of Fox’s imagination. They are not Republicans obstructing anything. They’re the people Obamacare has failed to serve.” Video: Meet ObamaCare’s unintended consequences

“There is much to like in their proposal. It would extend tax credits to help all Americans purchase insurance, getting around the tax code’s previous bias towards those who receive insurance through their employer. It would ensure the widespread availability of bare-bones catastrophic coverage without resorting to Obamacare’s individual mandate. It takes important steps towards reforming Medicaid and providing coverage for those with medical conditions. And it has laudable goals for deregulating health markets and empowering consumers to make health choices based on cost and quality, a development that would drive health care costs downward. The proposal isn’t perfect. It maintains Obamacare’s provision allowing children to stay on their parents’ insurance until age 26, for instance, an unnecessary exercise in infantilizing young Americans. Nor does it make any serious efforts to address Medicare, a program that will require reform sooner rather than later. That said, the plan still represents an important step forward: articulating an alternative to health care policy that empowers individual consumers rather than government. That’s precisely the necessary direction as the nation attempts to dig out from the wreckage of Obamacare, a law that deserves to be discarded at the first possible opportunity.” After Obamacare, what?

Our tax payer dollars at work. “Obamacare supporters are hoping the day after Valentine’s Day will be the day young people in America show health insurers some love. And they’re banking on women to make it happen. Feb. 15 is “National Youth Enrollment Day,” a nationwide series of concerts, rallies, and online campaigns aimed at convincing more young people to sign up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act. It’s the latest and largest piece of an effort that borrows heavily from President Obama’s reelection campaign, a plan that’s been slowed by the difficult rollout of the Affordable Care Act’s online portal.” Inside The Plan To Get More Young Americans To Enroll In Obamacare

President Obama

Forgotten, meaningless words. “There was one other area Obama talked about in Peoria 259 weeks ago: fiscal restraint. It almost seems ludicrous now after his four straight years of trillion-dollar-plus deficits and another contentious debate looming this month over raising the national debt limit yet again, well above the current fiscal hole that’s $17 trillion deep. “We’ve got to get serious about starting to live within our means,” said Democrat Barack Obama. No, really. He said that. You can see on the C-SPAN video below. “Instead of leaving debt for our children and our grandchildren and our great-grandchildren,” said the Great Spender, who’s created more debt than any other modern-day president. “That’s not the responsible way. That’s not how folks here in Peoria operate in their own lives, and they should expect the government is equally responsible.” Unfortunately, Americans have come to expect so much less from this man and his government.” Five years of Obama promises: What’s changed?

“I can’t recall any previous president, even when lying or shading the truth, saying that he had said something in a public speech when he had not (if you can think of such an incident, let me know). This is what is called a bold-faced lie, an egregious lie—and a lie that depends for its success on the collusion of the press.” Obama: degrees of lies

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Filed under 2014 Elections, AARP, Amnesty, Arizona Politics, Benghazi, Big Government, Class Warfare, Education, Foreign Policy, Freedom, Michelle Obama, Obamacare, President Obama, Story of the Day, The Left

News and Commentary for February 3

It's National Carrot Cake Day." Yummmm.

It’s “National Carrot Cake” Day. Yummmm.

Amnesty

“A top House Democrat who has been one of the most vocal advocates of amnesty said Friday that the GOP leadership’s “immigration principles” document that was unveiled Thursday does not rule out citizenship for the country’s illegal immigrants.” Rep. Luis Gutierrez: GOP’s ‘Immigration Principles’ Don’t Rule Out Eventual Citizenship for Illegals

We have a big problem—based on this article, most immigrating to the U.S. do not hold conservative values. “The 2008 National Annenberg Election Survey found that 62 percent of immigrants prefer a single, government-run health-care system. The 2010 Cooperative Congressional Election Study found that 69 percent of immigrants support Obamacare. Pew also found that 53 percent of Hispanics have a negative view of capitalism, the highest of any group surveyed. This is even higher than the 47 percent among self-identified supporters of Occupy Wall Street. The Pew Research Center has also found that 75 percent of Hispanics prefer a “bigger government providing more services,” and only 19 percent prefer a smaller government. Pew also reported that 55 percent of Asians prefer “bigger government providing more services,” and only 36 percent prefer a smaller government. So it’s no surprise that in 2012, 71 percent of Hispanics and 73 percent of Asians voted for Obama. Even Republican emphasis on patriotism and national sovereignty is likely to alienate many immigrants. A Harris poll found that 81 percent of native-born Americans believe our schools should teach students to be proud of being American, compared with only 50 percent of immigrants who had become naturalized U.S. citizens. Only 37 percent of naturalized citizens (compared with 67 percent of native-born citizens) think our Constitution is a higher legal authority than international law.” The Liberal Newcomers

Messaging

“This is an irrational administration, however, mired in the clichés and received truths of its most ardent true believers. The House GOP would do better to spend more time talking about energy than immigration, just as it should focus on Obamacare and not on cutting the COLA for the career military. Really, how hard is it to set up the 2014 elections in the right way?” The Keystone Cops

“It seems that Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), in her official Republican response, took a page from the playbook — as the Washington Post reported, “mixing plain-spoken platitudes with tenderly told stories about her children and her blue-collar roots.”  Walter feels that Republicans need to empower women, since many have the same priorities and issues as male voters.  “We need to point out that the way the Democrats speak to women is patronizing.  Women’s issues are not limited to their reproductive issues.  Republicans should not water down where they stand on the social issues, but they can echo their belief in a respectful, thoughtful, and empathetic way.  With that said, those running for office should be asking women voters, what is the most important issue facing them today, and who is best suited to help solve that issue?” How to Win in 2014

Education

School choice is the only answer! “There is a human tragedy smoldering in America’s inner cities. Twelve million poor children, mainly black and Hispanic, are trapped in failing government schools that are teaching them nothing. As a result, they will never get a chance at a middle-class life. Virtually every school board and every administration in inner city districts is controlled by Democrats, and has been for over fifty years. Everything that is wrong with inner city schools that policy can fix, Democrats are responsible for.” Atrocity

Elections

We shouldn’t look like haters. “Readers of this site know that I’m of a different view, that the leaders of the GOP and the conservative movement, while leveling very tough criticisms at the president, also need to carry themselves with a degree of grace and winsomeness. They need to be less agitated and more agreeable, in possession of strong convictions and moderate temperaments. They need to demonstrate a genuine interest in justice and those living in the shadows of society. And they need to propose far-reaching conservative reforms that constitute an actual governing vision, one that matches the challenges of this moment.” Both Obama and the GOP Badly Damaged

“Word of Waxman’s retirement came just a day after fellow leftist George Miller — who was also first elected in 1974 and served a Methuselah-like 20 terms in the House — called it quits. The growing number of prominent Democratic retirees prompted Nancy Pelosi on Friday to deny that she, too, would join them. Still, it’s clear that Democrats see the writing on the wall. “It’s been frustrating,” Waxman explained, “because of the extremism of Tea Party Republicans.” Translation: Americans have caught on to the Democrats’ incompetence and are going to elect Republicans in November — including Tea Party types. With unchallenged power for two years after Obama was elected, Democrats wrecked the economy, crippled the banking system, destroyed millions of high-paying jobs and nationalized the health care system against the people’s will. Now the bill is coming due. Eleven Democrats are reportedly retiring or seriously thinking about it. Thanks mainly to those “extreme” Tea Partyers, that number is likely to rise. The GOP would do well to remember that.” Waxman Retirement A Sign Of The Times For Troubled Dems

“Over time, more and more families will come to feel the pinch of big government’s blade against their throats. When friends, neighbors and coworkers are ready to listen, this is what they’ll need to hear: since each person’s well-being is to an enormous extent affected by prevailing social and economic conditions, since, in a countless variety of ways, those conditions are the product of a nation’s political enactments, and since here, in America, we freely elect the men who write the laws, which create the conditions in which we all prosper or perish, each citizen needs to be informed about the political programs that are being proposed and implemented in his name and make his voice and vote felt.” Let’s Hear It for The Low Information Voter

“On almost every contemporary issue there is a populist, middle-class argument to be made against elite liberalism. Yet the Republican class in charge seems ossified in its inability to make a counter-argument for the middle class. Never has the liberal agenda been so vulnerable, a logical development when bad ideas have had five years to prove themselves as very bad ideas. When Obama is all done he will have taken high presidential popularity ratings, a supermajority in the Senate, and a large margin in the House and lost them all — if only the Republicans can make an adequate case that they represent the middle class, the Democrats only the very wealthy and the very dependent.” A Beat-up, Exhausted, and Terrified Republican Establishment

President Obama

“Yet at no point in Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution, which lists the powers of Congress, nor any other part of the nation’s founding document, does it say that the legislature has a responsibility to “give a raise” to the citizenry. Earning more money is something to be voluntarily negotiated between a worker and employer, not something granted by an all-powerful, benevolent government. For decades, liberals have wanted the government to play an increasingly paternalistic role in people’s lives and Obama’s new favorite line makes it sound as if Washington is everybody’s boss. It’s an outgrowth of a political culture in which politicians sound like candidates for student government, competing to see who can grant more to the electorate by making increasingly absurd claims. As is always the case with liberals, Obama is defining compassion as a willingness to dictate how others should allocate money. If conservatives don’t support the federal government forcing businesses to pay a certain wage, regardless of the effect on employment, they are portrayed as being unsympathetic to low-income families.” Dinesh D’Souza was Right about Obama

“But as he moved along I started to think, what we are hearing is an admission of failure.  We are five years into the recession.  The nation has recovered on two-thirds of the jobs lost in the downturn.  According to the Associated Press story that ran on the morning of the Mr. Obama’s address to Congress, for the first time ever, a majority of Americans receiving food stamps are of working age.” A Sunday Look Back At SOTU By Clark Judge

“The reason this will backfire is that imperial presidencies only impress the loyal base of the President’s party, who mistake autocracy for wisdom. They tend to worry and frighten everyone else, especially when the result is the unmistakable incompetence of this administration on both domestic and foreign policy.  Expect the backlash on all of these points this year.” Will Obama’s pursuit of executive power backfire?

Big Government

Do these people take responsibility for anything? “The systemic problem is the fact that big-government regimes like ObamaCare won’t work because central planning of large economies never work, for reasons laid out by economist F. A. Hayek decades ago in The Road to Serfdom. History has only proven Hayek correct over and over again, while utopians keep insisting that the problem is just the people involved in its implementation. And Hayek predicts why incompetents and bullies end up at the top of those systems, too. Maybe Stewart should read it. It’s far too late for Pelosi.” Pelosi: ObamaCare incompetence “not my responsibility”

Standing up to the government, and winning! “After spending nearly two and half million dollars in legal fees and paying a $300,000 fine, the government has settled with Gibson and has finally returned the confiscated tonewood. Normally that would be the end of the story, with a victory scored for partisan government bullying of political opponents, however, that is not the end. Gibson took that wood and made it into the Government Series II Les Paul.  These special edition guitars are hot stamped in gold with the Government Series graphic, which is an American bald eagle holding a Gibson guitar neck.  It is an admirable statement of defiance of an abusive government and a refusal of a historic American company to be intimidated.” What Gibson Guitars Did with the Wood the Government Returned

“Of course, today’s Democratic party will offer nothing of the sort. Founded by Jackson as a coalition deeply suspicious of government, it evolved over a century ago into the party advocating the use of big government to solve problems. Today, it is now merely the party of government—and not just any government, but one whose constitutional framework has been twisted to concentrate wealth and power upon itself and its clients. Jackson’s party has come to represent everything that Jackson himself once opposed.” A Real Equality Agenda: Let’s redistribute power, not income

“The systemic problem is the fact that big-government regimes like ObamaCare won’t work because central planning of large economies never work, for reasons laid out by economist F. A. Hayek decades ago in The Road to Serfdom. History has only proven Hayek correct over and over again, while utopians keep insisting that the problem is just the people involved in its implementation. And Hayek predicts why incompetents and bullies end up at the top of those systems, too. Maybe Stewart should read it. It’s far too late for Pelosi.” Pelosi: ObamaCare incompetence “not my responsibility”

As we suspected. “Most of my co-workers found humor in the I.O. room on a cruder level. Just as the long-suffering American public waiting on those security lines suspected, jokes about the passengers ran rampant among my TSA colleagues: Many of the images we gawked at were of overweight people, their every fold and dimple on full awful display. Piercings of every kind were visible. Women who’d had mastectomies were easy to discern—their chests showed up on our screens as dull, pixelated regions. Hernias appeared as bulging, blistery growths in the crotch area. Passengers were often caught off-guard by the X-Ray scan and so materialized on-screen in ridiculous, blurred poses—mouths agape, à la Edvard Munch. One of us in the I.O. room would occasionally identify a passenger as female, only to have the officers out on the checkpoint floor radio back that it was actually a man. All the old, crass stereotypes about race and genitalia size thrived on our secure government radio channels.” Former insider says they’re on the lookout for hot women and hassling people.

Nothing will happen. Our country men and women have been too anesthetized. “In constitutional republics, noble lies are problematic at the best of times. But when the rulers, the guards, and the rest of the city all know that the lie is a lie, the endeavor becomes mere harlequinade — and, at 8 billion dollars a year, improvident, too. A better question, perhaps, is this: “who will fire the guards”?” It Ought to Be Curtains for the TSA: The agency is designed to do nothing except gawk, and now we all know it.

“When I first read that Alan Dershowitz had said the charges against Dinesh D’Souza are most likely a case of selective politically motivated prosecution, I was surprised. But I wondered about the strict accuracy of the report, since the source was Newsmax. But now we have some WSJ corroboration, so I think we can safely assume that Dershowitz is indeed defending – although not in any official capacity as a defense attorney – D’Souza.” D’Souza gets a defender

“Detroit represents nothing less than progressivism in its final stage of decadence: Worried that unionized public-sector workers are looting your city? Detroit is already bankrupt, unable to provide basic services expected of it — half the streetlights don’t work, transit has been reduced, neighborhoods go unpatrolled. Worried that public-sector unions are ruining your schools? Detroit’s were ruined a generation or more ago, the results of which are everywhere to be seen in the city. Worried that Obamacare is going to ruin our health-care markets? General-practice physicians are hard to find in Detroit, and those willing to accept Medicaid — which covers a great swath of Detroit’s population — are rarer still. Worried about the permissive culture? Four out of five of Detroit’s children are born out of wedlock. Worried that government is making it difficult for businesses to thrive? Many people in Detroit have to travel miles to find a grocery store. This is the endgame of welfare economics: What good is Medicaid if there are no doctors? What good are food stamps where there is no food? What good are “free” schools if you’re so afraid to send your children there that you feel it prudent to arm them first?” Progressivism Kills

“The Obama administration and its progressive soldiers seem to know no bounds when it comes to seeking political advantage by limiting speech. The Wall Street Journal put it well: “The Obama administration is moving to rein in the influence of tax-exempt groups in elections by creating rules to restrict their spending on a wide range of campaign-related activities.” Don’t Be Bullied By Obama Admin Attack on 501c-4s

“Everyone in the House Chamber knew something that the American people have yet to fully grasp and Republicans have yet to demonstrate an ability to combat – that their government has grown so large, so complex, so involved in virtually every aspect of their lives, that it is now being used as a weapon to by a small segment of the ruling political class. The weaponization of government is happening and it’s time Americans took notice.  For all the folks – primarily on the left – who screamed and yelled that the Patriot Act was shredding the Constitution, far more intrusive tactics that have nothing to do with the NSA or Homeland Security are being deployed right under our noses during this Administration.  Those tactics reduce every Americans’ personal and economic freedom. There is a dangerous arrogance of power among the President and senior-level Democrats that should concern every American.” Obama’s Weaponization of Government

The Economy

“Turning 30 used to mean hitting your stride as an official adult. But for many of the country’s millennials, it feels like being stuck in perpetual late adolescence. Marriage eludes many. Children? Not anytime soon. Most millennials have some sort of job, but for many a career seems unobtainable. A home of their own? Lots of them have had to move back in with mom and dad or shack up with roommates. That’s not the place where many millennials expected or wanted to be as they enter their thirties. “We have plans that we’re working toward. It’s just so slow,” said Erika Hall Trowell, a 31-year-old living in Phoenix, who after two layoffs and a sharp pay cut figures she and her husband are at least several years behind on their goals.” Millennials hit 30: It’s the economy, not us

“Obama’s SOTU speech was emblematic of the Texas saying (coined, no doubt, for LBJ), all hat and no cattle.  Every word – well, maybe not every word because AFA couldn’t watch it all the way through – was pure PR, trying to resurrect tired ideas that never could work.  Ridiculous progressive rhetoric squared! One of the more preposterous of many proposals was his all new, bright and shiny MyRA plan.  This is designed to be IRAs for Dummies but aimed at those making $19K a year and under.  Of course, no mention of the fact that these people have the same access to standard IRAs and ROTH IRAs as anyone else, so it doesn’t take a genius to figure out what this is really about.  But, guessing that people in this income range have little, if any, income to save after the bills are paid. MyRAs are designed to invest ONLY in US Treasury Bonds.  Yeah, that’s a great idea!  Let’s invest in a country that keeps running up debt they can’t pay.  This is extortion of the highest order.  It puts the burden on companies to sign on to this scam, eh, scheme, to help Uncle Fingers to create yet more debt.  Those bonds are being sold to foreign interests in return for a piece of America!” Obama’s Newest Scheme to Rob the POOR!

Obamacare

“You must explain this to your patients. You must tell them that they have purchased a product that was misrepresented to them and that you cannot deliver. It saddens me to think of the decreased access to care from actual physicians and the shockingly increased costs Aetna patients will now experience because of your choice to collude with big government rather than collaborate with patients and physicians.” ‘I will not comply’: Doctor slams Obamacare, sends must-read breakup letter to Aetna

“All told, I’m likely going to pay more than $6,000 more each year for my medical care. I’ve had to take a second job in order to pay for my ObamaCare plan. Given my health problems, the physical and emotional drain that this puts on me is difficult to bear. It’s also made it much more difficult for me to care for my ailing mother, who depends on me for help. For me, the impact of ObamaCare is a health plan that is both unaffordable and uncaring. For a law named “The Affordable Care Act,” this is both backward and perverse. It’s also not what you promised me when I voted for you, Mr. President. When you were on the campaign trail, you promised that ObamaCare would help me with my medical problems. You promised that people like me with pre-existing conditions would be better off. And you promised that if I liked my health-care plan, I could keep it. Mr. President, you’ve now broken all of these promises — and not just to me.” Betrayed by the President and ObamaCare

The Left

“America, we have a bullying epidemic. No, not the school bullying issues that get constant attention from Hollywood, the White House and the media. No, not the “fat-shaming” and “body-shaming” outbreaks on Facebook. The problem is wealth-shaming. Class-shaming. Success-shaming. The State of the Job Creator is under siege.” Standing up against wealth-shaming

“All presidents have, at one time or another, fudged on the truth. Most politicians pad their résumés and airbrush away their sins. But what is new about political lying is the present notion that lies are not necessarily lies anymore — a reflection of the relativism that infects our entire culture.” The Poison of Postmodern Lying

“Thanks to Bill Ayers, America, “rubbed raw with sores of discontent,” is again reminded from whence our president came. As evidenced by the pandemonium his progressive policies are delivering to every corner of American politics, society, and culture, Barack Obama is still very much committed to “radical social change.” Tracing backwards from Bill Ayers to Saul Alinsky to Alinsky’s source of inspiration, Lucifer, it’s undeniable that the president still firmly believes that “the world as it is just won’t do.” And what proves it is that he is currently in the process of ‘fundamentally transforming’ America’s world into the sort of hell Saul Alinsky thought ‘it should be.’” Bill Ayers and Obama Both Quote Alinsky

“So what was it about Ayers that I found so deeply unsettling?  I guess you could say it was the irrelevance of truth.  Truth, or even nuance, was just some trivial stumbling block to be overcome on the way to an end. And that end has never changed, ever, not one jot, since the days of SDS. Bill Ayers is Saul Alinsky on steroids — an Alinsky beyond Alinsky, as it were.  During the debate, he rarely responded directly to anything anyone asked or said, only recited a script so old it might as well have been found on some Egyptian tomb painting.  But since he has done this for so long, he did it brilliantly, unwaveringly, no contradictory idea or even thought allowed to enter his brain.  Victory for his cause was all.” The Devil and Bill Ayers: D’Souza Debates Ayers at Dartmouth

“D’Souza is now arguably in trouble because Obama’s people promised retribution during the president’s second term. “After we win this election, it’s our turn. Payback time,” Valerie Jarrett, Obama’s close, trusted adviser, has been quoted saying in reference to the 2012 election. She warned: ‘Everyone not with us is against us, and they better be ready because we don’t forget. The ones who helped us will be rewarded, the ones who opposed us will get what they deserve. There is going to be hell to pay.’” D’Souza’s Indictment and Double Standards

We want to have lives. “3. There’s a cautionary tale in all of this, which is that the right shouldn’t become like the left. Leave the hateful attacks, the venom, and the name-calling to them. Conservatives don’t need it, we shouldn’t want it, and it’s not consistent with our best tradition. If the left wants to give refuge to the haters, then that’s up to them. The right, on the other hand, should be characterized by people who are principled, passionate, decent and who don’t (as Ronald Reagan used to remind his staff) consider our opponents to be our enemies. Some conservatives seem to make a rather good living on doing the opposite, on engaging in ad hominem and often childish attacks, and it’s discrediting to them and to the movement they claim to represent.” For Leftists, the Personal is Still the Political

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Filed under 2014 Elections, 2016 Presidential Election, Amnesty, Big Government, Economy, Education, Messaging, Obamacare, President Obama, The Left

News and Commentary for January 31

Cheer up! If we work really, really hard, we WILL take the Senate and keep the House this year.

Cheer up! If we work really, really hard, we WILL take the Senate and keep the House this year.

On February 19, Zach Taylor, former border control agent, and current National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers, will speak at Palo Verde Republican Women’s February meeting. Via email, he sent these comments along to one of our members. Considering what some in the Republican party are attempting to do about illegal immigration, we thought we should share:

“Keep the stories of border insecurity and criminals coming. The sell-outs hate those pesky little details.

The purpose of the Immigration Laws are to ensure National Security and Public Safety, not to provide a pathway to citizenship to those who break them.  We need to put America and Americans first.”

Zack Taylor, Chairman and Border Security Expert/National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers/NAFBPO.org

Illegal Immigration

You won’t hear this reported in the MSM. “The officers who would be charged with approving millions of applications from illegal immigrants for legal status warned Congress this week that they can’t handle the workload, and said the change would guarantee criminals and others would be approved to remain in the country.” Immigration officials warn of amnesty ‘overload’

Common sense. “Lee’s point is that House Republicans should not pass a group of bills all at once dealing with all the parts of a comprehensive immigration reform solution, then label such a legislative package as “piecemeal” or “step-by-step.” Instead, Lee argues that real step-by-step or piecemeal immigration reform is when the House moves to secure the border and forces the Democrat-controlled Senate and President Barack Obama’s administration to pass and implement actual border security and interior enforcement measures.” Mike Lee: Secure the Border Before Dealing with Illegal Aliens in America

Arizona Elections

Andrew Walter, Republican candidate for congress in AZ CD9 on the state of our union. “The answer to this misery is economic freedom. I’ll let Sinema defend ObamaCare, while I defend the families who’ve lost coverage and medical care. I’ll let her talk about minimum wage, while I fight for maximum employment. I’ll let her defend dangerous government spending, while I defend our children’s future and opportunities. Economic freedom recognizes the dignity and value unique to each human being. Economic freedom empowers individuals to develop their unique God-given skills through work and opportunity. The politics of dependency championed by Rep. Sinema, and those like her, is destructive. Let them talk about a handout, while we talk about a hand-up. Let them talk about dependency, while we talk about empowerment.” Andrew Walter’s Response to President Obama’s State of the Union

“’I think that one of the patterns that we’ve seen is that slowly but surely his popularity with Democrats has waned, and then with independents, and now it has waned with Republicans,” de Berge said. “When you get that dynamic in all three of the major parties, that begins to have an effect that’s kind of hard to reverse.’” New poll shows McCain support in Arizona dropping

National Elections

Good riddance. “An interesting footnote on Waxman: His district became more conservative after the lines were redrawn as part of the 2010 redistricting. Evidently California’s Democratic legislature decided to stick him with a few more Republican voters on the assumption that, as a state institution and perennial winner, he could handle it with no sweat. It didn’t play out that way in 2012. He won by just eight points over an independent, a scent of blood in the water that attracted newbie candidates this year. A guy who’s spent his 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, and half of his 70s winning elections isn’t going to risk leaving Congress by being ignominiously hauled out by voters, a fate that his California colleague Pete Stark — who also served 40 years in the House — suffered in 2012. You can’t fire Henry. He quits.” Abandon ship: Henry Waxman to retire

Voice of reason. “Cutting the retirement pay of career military and pushing doomed immigration bills that lack even the most basic of gestures to the base is exactly what comes from an isolated, Beltway-centric House GOP leadership.  If as is rumored, Congressman Jeb Hensarling and/or Congressman Tom Price challenge the established order for leadership in the next Congress at the organizing meeting of the incoming Congress in November after the elections, the events of the past three weeks will guide many votes.” Memo To House GOP: Stop Threatening Chances Of A Senate GOP Majority In 2016

Not sure how this will go IF the Republicans help the Democrats to slam through an amnesty program. “A Gallup Poll in late January showed that more and more states are becoming Republican.  Gallup tells us that 14 of the 50 states have a clear majority of respondents calling themselves “Republicans,” and 17 of the 50 states have a clear majority of respondents calling themselves “Democrats.”   This, however, dramatically understates the growing Republican advantage in many states.  The following 14 states are presented by Gallup as neither Democrat nor Republican: Arizona, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, Kentucky, Missouri, Indiana, West Virginia, Iowa, Wisconsin and Ohio. Election results, however, suggest a strong Republican trend.” More States Are Quietly Becoming Republican

Maybe this is the reason for a “quiet Republican revolution” as the article above indicates. “In the country, the president’s popularity is underwater. In the District of Columbia itself, as Gallup notes, it’s at 81%. The Washington area is now the wealthiest in the nation. No matter how bad the hinterlands do, it’s good for government and those who live off it. The country is well aware. It is no accident that in the national imagination Washington is the shallow and corrupt capital in “The Hunger Games,” the celebrity-clogged White House Correspondents’ Dinner, “Scandal” and the green room at MSNBC. It is the chattering capital of a nation it less represents than dominates.” Noonan: Meanwhile, Back in America . . .

Big Government/Misguided Government

When I hear folks on the Left criticizing the new rules, then I will believe the Right isn’t the only target. “Conservative groups are mounting a major resistance effort against the Internal Revenue Service’s post-tea party targeting scandal rules, which are designed to clamp down on outside groups’ ability to organize as nonprofits and still play a role in political conversations.” IRS rules change seen as limiting free speech for nonprofit organizations

“This administration’s partisan use of prosecutorial discretion to harass conservatives and Republicans more generally is one of the great scandals of our time. But, to be fair to the Obama administration, so is the partisan bias of the mainstream press. This makes it noteworthy that Alan Dershowitz, who is most emphatically not a conservative Republican, has weighed in on the question of Dinesh’s indictment, saying, “’This is clearly a case of selective prosecution for one of the most common things done during elections, which is to get people to raise money for you. If they went after everyone who did this, there would be no room in jails for murderers.’” Alan Dershowitz Rises to the Defense of Dinesh D’Souza

Republican Messaging

Good advice! “A test case for this kind of policy-oriented political strategy is the governor’s race in Texas: Wendy Davis, the Democratic candidate, has a complicated personal history. Stop talking about it. (Her capacity for veracity is a legitimate issue, but for God’s sake why go into her parenting choices? That’s a snare and a distraction.) Talk policy — specifically, the issue that brought Davis to national prominence. What was her 11-hour filibuster about? Blocking a state law whose major feature was outlawing abortions beyond 20 weeks. Make that the battlefield. Make Davis explain why she chose not just to support late-term abortion but to make it her great cause. Stay away from the minefield of gender politics. Challenge the other side on substance. And watch them lose.” How to debunk the ‘war on women’

The Economy

“The most accurate measure of inflation the federal government uses – the PCE deflator, which the CBO and the Federal Reserve use because of its greater accuracy – shows the 1981 minimum wage would be worth $7.47 an hour in today’s dollars. In other words, the purchasing power of the federal minimum wage has changed little over the past generation. And the president’s proposed hike would raise the minimum wage to a historically unprecedented level. Liberals and conservatives can debate the wisdom of doing this in a weak economy, but both sides should understand that that’s what’s being proposed.” The Minimum Wage: Facts vs. Fiction

“The reason we haven’t seen the spurt has been a series of policy sucker punches: a debt up $6 trillion in five years, a 2013 tax increase on investors and business profits from the increase in personal income-tax rates, ObamaCare business mandates that cap employment, the Dodd-Frank bill that has paralyzed bank lending, welfare expansions that discourage work and environmental regulations on oil, gas and coal output that prevent an even more robust energy boom. And then, of course, we have a $3 trillion Fed balance sheet that has Wall Street and Main Street engaged in a guessing game of what central bankers will do next. To keep growth above 3%, we must remove these impediments to business expansion. We also need to get Americans working again. The jobs problem is both a supply and demand problem. Businesses are reluctant to hire because of mandates like ObamaCare. But just as important, the massive exodus of adults from the labor force — fewer than six of 10 working-age Americans now hold a job — has put a ceiling on GDP growth.” Raw Deal: Obamanomics Has Cost The Economy $1.3 Trillion

Foreign Policy

Chaos. “There will be differences. The world in 2017 will be more dangerous than the world in 2001. It will be more dangerous because in addition to safe havens in Afghanistan and Sudan, al Qaeda will have established outposts, or will govern actual territory, in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Somalia, Mali, Libya, Sinai, and Algeria. It will be more dangerous because Iran will be capable of building a nuclear weapon, and Saudi Arabia and Jordan likely will have started nuclear programs of their own. It will be more dangerous because a heavily armed China and Japan will be at each other’s throats. It will be a world where American power is challenged on every front, a world resembling, even more than it does already, pre-World War I Europe, where declining empires and terrorism and ethno-religious conflict inaugurated the greatest man-made disaster in recorded history. It will be a world much like today’s, a world where America is mocked, despised, flouted, subverted, challenged, chastened, and threatened, and our only response is to say that we are so very, very concerned.” The Big Chide: What will the world look like in 2017?

Obamacare

“What happens when employees at a small business find out the costs of their new insurance options under ObamaCare? WTAE in Pittsburgh dropped in on Simonetta’s Collision and Car Care in McKeesport, where the new pricing and deductibles are being rolled out as their cameras record the reaction. Without exception, everyone ends up enduring the bitter irony in the name of the Affordable Care Act (via Daniel Halper at TWS).” Video: People discover just how “affordable” the Affordable Care Act is

“First, the plans are far too expensive, thanks to ObamaCare’s regulations, taxes, and benefit mandates. And the subsidies phase out quickly enough that many lower-middle class families will still find they can’t or don’t want to pay the costs. Second, it won’t take long for those currently uninsured to realize that they are better off putting off the purchase, since ObamaCare guarantees they can get coverage after they get sick, and at subsidized rates.” Why Do The Uninsured Hate ObamaCare?

You didn’t build that. “’The cost to get (a new treatment) approved is significantly higher from a regulatory point of view,” he said. “And if you invest the time and the money and take the risk, if there’s a precarious reimbursement setting, the whole equation is in jeopardy. Innovation is in jeopardy.’” Drug companies warn innovation could suffer under Obamacare

The Left

“All presidents have, at one time or another, fudged on the truth. Most politicians pad their résumés and airbrush away their sins. But what is new about political lying is the present notion that lies are not necessarily lies anymore — a reflection of the relativism that infects our entire culture.” The Poison of Postmodern Lying

It doesn’t have to be this way America. “Socialism. Humanity’s most tragic experiment. For all its varying faces — from the totalitarianism of North Korea, Cuba, and Venezuela to the social democracies of Europe — the truth shows forth in absolute clarity. Earlier this week, we learned that in 2013, foreign investment in France declined by 77 percent. That’s 77 percent.” Socialism’s Sad Estate

Speaking from experience. “Ultimately, welfare states actually don’t help people in need. Instead, they perpetuate empty, short-term remedies for social problems that require far deeper attention. In establishing a governing premise that removes consequential risk from calculations of conduct, welfare states weaken the incentives for initiative and sacrifice the social benefits that are born of personal responsibility. And welfare states represent the epitome of crony capitalism — they exchange redistributive patronage for political power. In contrast to some of my fellow conservatives, when it comes to welfare states, I actually know what I’m talking about. I spent 24 of my 26 years living in a welfare state: The U.K.” Welfare states are unfair states

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Filed under 2014 Elections, Amnesty, Arizona Politics, Big Government, CD9, Economy, Foreign Policy, Obamacare, President Obama, Rep. Krysten Sinema, Senator John McCain, Socialism, The Left, War on Women

News and Commentary for January 30

Hi. I was in the mood for something cute today--here it is!

Hi. I was in the mood for something cute today–here it is!

I heard Senator Flake perpetuating this myth in a sound bite on the radio yesterday. I think we need to educate him. “Women congregate in different professions than men do, and the largely male professions tend to be higher-paying. If you account for those differences, and then compare a woman and a man doing the same job, the pay gap narrows to 91 percent. So, you could accurately say in that Obama ad that, ‘women get paid 91 cents on the dollar for doing the same work as men.’” Obama’s “77 Cents on the Dollar” Claim Debunked

Here’s a resource for keeping track of who’s running for election in the state of Arizona. Rep. David Schweikert is running unopposed as of today. Arizona Candidates Election Race 2014 Republican and Democrat

Ironic—Rep. Ron Barber (AZ CD2) says the party of bone crushing regulation wants less red tape. And that an increase in the minimum wage is required because “working families are working two or more jobs.” Doesn’t he understand that by forcing businesses to pay more these families working two or more jobs most likely won’t be working at all? “He said he hopes Congress will move on plans laid out by the president to help get people back to work, which included updating job-training centers and cutting red tape to bring jobs back to America. Barber supports an increase in the national minimum wage, noting Tucson families are working two or three part-time jobs to keep food on the table.” Area Congress members back president’s call for wage hikes and jobs

We’ve got to keep tabs on the Democrats who are running in Arizona so we can tell our friends and neighbors. “’I had a hard time keeping a straight face when a lobbyist decides to run for office and then suddenly blames other lobbyists for influencing legislators,” said Arizona Republican Party Chairman Robert Graham. “This is one guy that just keeps filling the room with irony — it’s just much too convenient for him to now take a position against what he’s been doing his entire career — and voters deserve to hear the truth about his past.’” Has Democrat Candidate Had A Deathbed Conversion? Former Corporate Lobbyist and Peddler of Political Influence Now Calls for Ban on Gifts to Legislators

The battle of the Tea Party vs. the Establishment Republicans in AZ. Who will win? “He said that group has taken control of the party apparatus in Arizona, as evidenced by this weekend’s decision by GOP precinct committee workers to condemn U.S. Sen. John McCain for not hewing to party principles. ‘Some of the far-right activists, if you will, they’re the ones who get out and work and they run for PC,’’ he said. “They’re reaping those rewards.’”’ AZ GOP leader steps down, citing time demands and Tea Party influences

The fight’s going to be in the Senate. Be prepared for battle. “Just two months ago, Democratic National Committee chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz insistedrepeatedly — that House Democrats would run on ObamaCare and win back control of the chamber. Just a day after Barack Obama himself defended ObamaCare in the State of the Union speech, they’re singing a different tune. Donors and strategists will move resources away from House races and instead focus on trying to salvage control of the Senate.” Democrats donors and strategists to concede defeat in the House?

What the hell? “Officials at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau are conducting a massive, NSA-esque data-mining project collecting account information on an estimated 991 million American credit card accounts. It was also learned at a Congressional hearing Tuesday that CFPB officials are working with the Federal Housing Finance Agency on a second data-mining effort, this one focused on the 53 million residential mortgages taken out by Americans since 1998. The mortgage information is being compiled in a database that can be “reversed engineered” by hackers seeking information for identify theft, according to an expert cited during the hearing. The revelations came in a hearing of the House Financial Services Committee, during which CFPB Director Richard Cordray was repeatedly pressed about federal officials rummaging around in the private financial affairs of millions of Americans. “We’re collecting aggregated information,” Cordray told the committee while defending the bureau’s data-mining efforts.” Federal consumer bureau data-mining hundreds of millions of consumer credit card accounts, mortgages

Read the whole thing—don’t worry, it’s short. “In the few minutes I have tonight — I’d like to speak especially to those Americans who may feel they have been forgotten by both political parties. Those individuals and families who work hard, play by the rules, balance their budgets, honor the Golden Rule … and don’t understand why their government in Washington can’t do the same. … To be fair, President Obama and his party did not create all of these problems. The Republican Establishment in Washington can be just as out-of-touch as the Democratic Establishment.” Six reasons why Mike Lee’s tea party response to the State of the Union was amazing

Burn baby, burn. “What we saw last night was a burned-out presidency. Mr. Obama was like an aging rock star trying to recapture lost glory. Beginning his sixth year in office, with two years left, President Obama–the avatar of liberalism, the man who presented himself as the embodiment of Hope and Change–has, in the words of Robert Frost, ‘nothing to look backward to with pride, And nothing to look forward to with hope.’” Obama’s Burned-Out Presidency

No one cares, because it is “all blah, blah, blah,” all the time. “America didn’t really care to show up to watch the fifth iteration of a now over-hyped D.C. ritual chock-full of recycled platitudes from an uninspired president only halfheartedly fighting back the throes of an imminent lame-duckery of his own making? …Weird.” Surprise: Last night’s SOTU ratings the lowest of Obama’s presidency

Sound advice. “Last week, if you tuned into the Grammys, you were treated to a gaudy spectacle of pretentious elitists, wealthy drug addicts and godless Satanists patting each other on the back and congratulating themselves for another year spent dumping toxic waste directly into America’s soul. If you watched the State of the Union address tonight, you saw the exact same sort of thing all over again. Except with less dancing. And more clothing (thank God).” For the love of God, can we just abolish the State of the Union Address already?

Duh. “Five years after the Wall Street collapse, the plan President Obama laid out this week to try to revive a sluggish economy and build “ladders of opportunity” into the middle class has been received largely with yawns from economists and business groups, who argue that his small, targeted policy proposals aren’t substitutes for a broader vision of less spending and regulation and of fundamental tax reform.” Economists see few dollars and little sense on Obama agenda

Hear! Hear! “As we saw at the end of the Johnson and Carter administrations, this approach will collapse upon itself. There will never be enough resources to satisfy the insatiable appetites of an ever-growing list of groups and interests. Meanwhile, the American people will soon relearn that they do not need government to focus on redistributing their income and assets. They can do that themselves through charities, private and religious institutions, and good works. They will realize that the best way for the government to help the nation is to focus on protecting the nation’s security from foreign threats and to counteract its own distorting interference into civil society.” The State of Liberalism

It’s going to be a long and ugly three years. “Yes, the problem is particularly acute because Obama is the avatar for the hopes and dreams of the progressive elites who will never hold him to account (except, perhaps, for failing to push leftward even more quickly). It is also a danger because Obama is perfectly comfortable, indeed feels it’s morally righteous, to act in an illegal, arbitrary manner when his ideological agenda cannot be enacted through constitutional methods.” Obama Is a Symptom, Not the Cause

Hunger Games in real life. “At a time of great economic insecurity, it’s not great politics to make government workers the “haves” of the labor market: paid above-market wages and shielded from the chronic risk of job loss that most of the rest of America faces. Oh, sure, this is true for everyone — professionals often have to take a pay cut to work for the government. But to the average person sweating it out through rounds of layoffs at a job they don’t like very much, government workers seem to have it very good by comparison.” MEGAN MCARDLE: Not All Democrats Want A Higher Minimum Wage.

This is absolutely insane (emphasis mine).I am in D.C. meeting with a variety of folks including a firm that specializes in assisting health care companies move through the maze of the new law’s after-effects. Lawyers have never been more necessary than now in D.C., with dozens of agencies churning out hundreds of rules totaling thousands of pages –every month.  Every company in every industry must have Washington counsel.  Period.  Even the best regional firms have no idea how to manage this Vesuvius of rules. Which is why the GOP, headed off to its retreat, should do nothing on the policy front at all except pledge to do their very best to slow down the juggernaut until help arrives via a Senate takeover in November.  No immigration bill.  No debt limit showdown.  Just hearing after hearing after hearing.  Seven days a week of hearings into these rules. Keep the queen bees busy at least, and slow down the wrecking ball.” “I Won’t Stand Still”–Modestly: The Already Forgotten SOTU And The GOP’s Need For “Masterly Inactivity”

Oklahoma attorney general doing the work that congress won’t do. “The four words that threaten disaster for the ACA say the subsidies shall be available to persons who purchase health insurance in an exchange “established by the state.” But 34 states have chosen not to establish exchanges. So the IRS, which is charged with enforcing the ACA, has ridden to the rescue of Barack Obama’s pride and joy. Taking time off from writing regulations to restrict the political speech of Obama’s critics, the IRS has said, with its breezy indifference to legality, that subsidies shall also be dispensed to those who purchase insurance through federal exchanges the government has established in those 34 states. Pruitt is challenging the IRS in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, and there are similar challenges in Indiana, Virginia and Washington, D.C.” Four words in the ACA could spell its doom

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Filed under 2014 Elections, Arizona Politics, AZ CD2, Big Government, Economy, Equal Pay, Obamacare, President Obama, Regulation, Senator Jeff Flake, Tea Party, The Left

News and Commentary for January 29

Don't give up! We can win in November 2014. We just need lots of boots on the ground!

Ladies of PVRW: We must not give up! We can win in November 2014. We just need lots of boots on the ground! We must save our country for our children and grandchildren.

Equal opportunity, and then you’ll get more equal results. “All of these proposals within this new conservative reform agenda, along with many more to come, mark the road to Philadelphia. These principles and these policies will work – and will put Americans back to work. Not just by cutting big government, but by fixing broken government.  Not just by making government smaller but by promoting bigger citizens, stronger families and more heroic communities. Our goal should be an America where everyone has a fair chance to pursue happiness – and find it. That’s what it looks like when protest grows into reform.” Lee: ‘Our Goal Should Be an America Where Everyone Has a Fair Chance to Pursue Happiness — and Find It’

Good reviews across the board, even in some MSM outlets. “We can see it in the response, which was good on substance as well as delivery. She has an Everywoman quality, and doesn’t hesitate to deploy it. She started off the speech noting that her first job was at McDonalds, and connects to voters outside the Beltway and the thought leaders. Unlike some politicians even at this level, McMorris Rodgers knows how to express herself dynamically rather than read off of cue cards, and how to channel joy, intellect, principle, and common sense in tandem. What about the substance of the response? For the most part, it’s a recitation of GOP principles, as one would expect, except when McMorris Rodgers talks about her family — and especially her 6-year-old son, who has Down’s Syndrome. Cole has “only made me more determined to see the potential in every human life,” McMorris Rodgers told the nation passionately. “We are not defined by our limits, but by our potential.”  Shortly after that, McMorris Rodgers said that the issue facing America was not “income inequality … but opportunity inequality,” which she pledged the GOP to fight.  “That gap has become far too wide,” she argued, because of the same policies Obama proposed yet again in the State of the Union speech.” WaPo: You know, the official GOP response was, er … good

As women of PVRW we must stand up to the “war on women” crowd. There is no war on women, and the National Federation of Republican Women has thousands of female members to prove it. “Mike Huckabee just became a field general in the War on Women. He inadvertently won his promotion with one sentence at the Republican National Committee winter meeting. To wit: ‘If the Democrats want to insult the women of America by making them believe they are helpless without Uncle Sugar coming in and providing for them a prescription each month for birth control because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government, then so be it.’ The Unbelievable Idiocy of the War on Women

“We can all debate why it is that women and men make such different choices, and whether that in itself is a problem society ought to seek to solve. Yet it would be nice if first we could all agree to stop misleading Americans by repeating this statistic and pretending that the 23-cent wage gap is evidence of rampant workplace sexism. Mainstream journalists are moving in that direction; it would be nice if the president’s speechwriters would catch on.” More Pinocchios for the President on Equal Pay

Truth! “While President Obama’s prescriptions would grow federal intervention at all levels of education, conservatives in Congress have proposals that would actually restore state and local control. As Senator Mike Lee noted in his tea-party response to the SOTU, ‘inequality — real inequality — is trapping poor children in failing schools to benefit bureaucrats and union bosses. It’s penalizing low-income parents for getting married, or getting better jobs.’” Obama’s Education Plans: Little Evidence, Lots of Big Government

Thank you! Maybe someone can find the video of Rep. Sinema of AZ CD9 standing and cheering! “The president may have done all Republicans a favor when he offered up an applause line that got all the Democrats to spring to their feet and loudly cheer Obamacare. Most of America hates that policy. That image of Democrats cheering for that policy is sure to feature in Republican attack ads this fall, and to great effect.” Obama’s Mismatched, Misfit State of the Union Is In the Books

Exhaustion. “For me, the defining moment of the speech was this pronouncement: So tonight, I’ve asked Vice President Biden to lead an across-the-board reform of America’s training programs to make sure they have one mission: train Americans with the skills employers need, and match them to good jobs that need to be filled right now. An across-the-board reform to make sure training programs train, and Vice President Biden is in charge of it. That pretty much sums up the Obama administration, and the American Left, at this moment in time. That is what exhaustion looks like.” A Sorry State

There has been, and will continue to be push back. “The Constitution didn’t envision such sweeping unilateral exercises of power within a government of divided powers. As Texas senator Ted Cruz points out in today’s Wall Street Journal: “The Obama administration has been so brazen in its attempts to expand federal power that the Supreme Court has unanimously rejected the Justice Department’s efforts to expand federal power nine times since January 2012.” Just today (Tuesday) came a potential tenth — a three-judge federal-appeals court unanimously found that the Obama administration violated the Freedom of Information Act in trying to keep secret the government’s data on how much individual retailers take in from the food-stamp program. One of the three judges, Jane Kelly, is an Obama appointee.” A President Becalmed Grasps for Power He May Not Have

It couldn’t happen to a more corrupt bunch of liars and thiefs. “In his memo this week, Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg warns me to “forget the conventional wisdom” that “the president is in trouble.” Greenberg points to Barack Obama’s approval rating being up, the Republicans’ reputation at a “remarkable low,” and the generic Congressional vote between the parties being even. Some of this makes sense, but on eve of Obama’s State of the Union address, I’m going with the conventional wisdom: Obama and the Democrats are in deep trouble.” The Political State of the Union Is Not Good Obama and the Democrats are in deep trouble

Getting weaker. No one has to recite any of the statistics noted above to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and its friends in Washington. They know, and they obviously don’t care. If they did, they wouldn’t be pushing mightily to make 2014 their make-or-break year to pass economically ruinous illegal-immigrant amnesty. But to their eternal shame, they are. Throw the ongoing and deepening confusion and chaos of Obamacare and the administration’s apparent nonchalant attitude as it crumbles into the mix, and the one thing you don’t have is a recipe for the economy to have anything resembling a strong year. It’s impossible to know, but it may be that the stock market has finally caught on to what should have been obvious all along, as it shed about 3 percent of its value in last week’s final two days. One thing we do know is what CNBC’s Rick Santelli stated Friday afternoon: government and central bank strategies based on endless stimulus and artificial money creation ‘can’t go on forever.’” The Economic State of the Union Is Weak

Great article from the indispensable Victor Davis Hanson. I recommend that click on over to National Review Online and read the whole thing. “We are reentering Nixonian times, or perhaps worse, given that a free press at least went after Nixon’s misdeeds and misadventures. Now it has silenced itself for fear of harming a once-in-century chance for a fellow progressive’s makeover of America. We live in an age when a CNN moderator interrupts a presidential debate to help her sputtering candidate, and when a writer for the often ironic and sarcastic New Yorker sees no irony in doing a fawning interview with the president, tagging along on a shakedown jet tour from one mansion of crony capitalists to the next — as Obama preaches to the head-nodders about inequality and fairness in order to ensure that the bundled checks pour in.” Governing by Pen and Phone

Can we overcome? “That said, there’s no question that Mr. Obama has been a consequential president. The damage he’s inflicted on our nation has been significant, comprehensive, and durable–including but not limited to the Affordable Care Act. The degree to which we can unwind the disaster of the Obama era is unclear. I don’t for a moment underestimate the harm America’s 44th president has done to our nation. But on matters of sheer competence, I’ll stick with my assessment: Barack Obama is Jimmy Carter without Camp David.” Obama Both Incompetent and Consequential

Remember, we’ve got three more years of this. “Try as they might to change the subject, the negative impact of ObamaCare on the economy and the lives of millions of Americans will remain the single most important domestic issue in 2014. The minimum wage is economic snake oil. But so, too, is the president’s feckless effort to pretend he can magically bypass Congress. Rather than breathe new life into a presidency that has gone seriously off the rails, this stunt will merely confirm that the White House is as helpless to raise the president’s poll numbers as it is to improve the economy. Rhetoric may have won Barack Obama the presidency, but it cannot make up for his inability to govern.” Obama Has Already Proved He Can’t Govern

Good grief. “Obama got elected in 2008 on the promise that he would rise above partisanship and heal a broken political process. Instead, he’s so disinterested in working across the aisle that he’d rather mope at not controlling Congress and fall back to using EOs. Gibbs senses the irony and hypocrisy of this, and offers the “let history judge” dodge, when the utter failure to engage in the White House is apparent right now.” Gibbs: Obama gave up trying to change Washington long ago

No wonder President Obama’s approval rating is over 80 percent in Washington D.C. They’re living the high life on redistributed wealth… “Since the economic collapse of 2008, Washington D.C. and its surrounding areas have remained nearly untouched. In fact, Washington is booming as the rest of the country continues to suffer. The median household income in Washington D.C. is close to $20,000 higher than the median household income in the United States.” Real Income Inequality: A Look at the Income Gap Between Washington D.C. and the Rest of America

Less government is what the people want—if this is true, why do so many people still vote for the Democrats? “’Embattled Americans can doubtless find other evidence that the unscrupulous and uninhibited are already on top, and the nation progressing down the road to serfdom.  But could this happen in the United States of America, land of the free and home of the brave? Consider Hayek’s warning: ‘Even a strong tradition of political liberty is no safeguard if the danger is precisely that new institutions and policies will gradually undermine and destroy that spirit.’ Obama’s Road to Serfdom “Inequality” is a highly elastic concept. No one seriously argues that everyone’s income or wealth should be the same, so each listener can ascribe his own meaning to the term. And polls suggest that most Americans agree that, in some fashion, “inequality” is a legitimate issue. The Democrats’ problem is that they haven’t convinced voters that the solution to the problem of inequality, however defined, is more government. Today’s Rasmussen Reports includes these very interesting data: A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 69% of Likely U.S. Voters consider income inequality at least a somewhat serious problem in the United States today. … But when asked which would do more to close the income gap in America, 59% choose less government involvement in the economy over more government action. Thirty-three percent (33%) think increased government involvement in the economy would do more to close the income gap.” On Inequality, Voters Aren’t Buying the Democrats’ Solution

More folks appear to be seeking the ‘fair and balanced’ approach. “Put in context, MSNBC prime time viewers outnumbered those watching CNN by 2-to-1, while Fox more than doubled MSNBC’s own viewership. That means four people are watching Bret Baier and Bill O’Reilly for every one watching Anderson Cooper or Piers Morgan.” Cable war becomes massacre: Fox dominates as CNN suffers huge decline

Theft. “Because the Broncos play at the Jets next season, Manning’s effective New Jersey tax rate will be more in line with the state’s tax table. He will pay roughly $60,414 if they win the Super Bowl and $60,229 if they lose based on allocable income of $682,065 or $679,995 (9/200 x total 2014 calendar-year pay). However, if the Super Bowl were held anywhere other than New Jersey, he would only be paying them $13,425 or $13,384 for his 2014 game against the Jets.” New Jersey Taxes Could Eat Up All Of Peyton Manning’s Super Bowl Earnings

Getting smarter but could they ever vote for a Republican? “On the day of the nation’s 93rd State of the Union address, over six million young people between the ages of 16 and 24 are neither working nor in school, inflicted with a 16.3% youth unemployment rate. According to a press release by YAF, “they expect that Obama will fail to directly address our nation’s young people; as he will fail to apologize for misleading our nation’s youth and offer no plan, just more empty rhetoric.” The poll findings revealed that only 6% of young people between the ages of 18 and 24 are more favorable to the President since he unleashed his now famous falsehood.” YAF Poll: 68% of Millennials Less Favorable Toward President Obama After ‘Lie of The Year’

Maybe we’ve given up on being “self-governing?” “I hope every American actually sees Obama speak those words on a TV or computer screen. His dictatorial attitude, layered with arrogance and condescension, should be repudiated by a self-governing people. Obama’s pen is now forcing schools to use Common Core standards, and parents are up in arms nationwide about defective methods, bad choices of readings, obnoxious federal control through required tests and the computerizing of very private information on all students.” Obama, Far Left Use Government To Subvert U.S. Education

Anyone get why on one hand, the Democrats want amnesty, but on the other hand, they also are seeking a minimum wage increase to over $10 an hour? It just doesn’t make sense… The two are diametrically opposed to one another. “Pro-amnesty politicians and business lobbies talk about investing in our future with an illegal alien amnesty, but what they really want is a first generation of cheap labor for disposable service and manufacturing industries whose employees will be so poorly paid that they will contribute little if anything in taxes and whose children will be more likely to be unemployed than their parents.” Amnesty Ends the American Dream

Scratching my head. “One might think that Senate Democrats, who face an uphill battle in this year’s midterms, would tread carefully on controversial ground. The last thing they need in a cycle that is almost certain to bounce hard against them is to give Republicans another rally point in tight races. Yet 19 of the Senate Democratic Caucus have decided to join the Obama administration in its effort at the Supreme Court in defending the HHS contraception mandate.” Senate Dems to file amicus brief against Hobby Lobby

This: “Now, the Obama administration — led by Holder — has decided that Islam is a “race,” and therefore to examine or even to adduce a Muslim’s Islamic beliefs about jihad, beheading, violence against kuffar (“infidels”), or re-establishing a caliphate is tantamount to racism. This administration behavior is rationalized because ‘federal authorities have in particular singled out Muslims in counter terrorism investigations and Latinos for immigration investigations.’” This: “Advocacy groups and willing dupes in the media and Democrat Party — like Senator Dick Durbin — have foolishly yet successfully conflated race and ideology in the case of only one religion, Islam. They have made examining the latter tantamount to discrimination against the former.  No one ever argues that singling out Christians for repression because they hold politically incorrect views about gay marriage or abortion amounts to “racism.” And this: “Obama and Holder are transforming the U.S. into a dhimmi nation: one that cowers before Islamic law and demands that its non-Muslim citizens — especially its 240 million Christians — meekly accept their second-class status and never broach the glaringly obvious fact of Islamic violence, even if this means making all non-Muslims less safe. The question for those of us in the majority, then: just how long will we put up with such a dangerous policy?” First-Class Islam: Eric Holder Puts Muslims Above Terror Suspicion

This is what keeps me up at night. “America’s declining military, political and economic power under Mr. Obama, and its continuing turn inward are gravely endangering even today’s existing minimal conditions of security and stability. If we continue down Mr. Obama’s path, America’s role will either fall empty, or other powers will try to assume it. In either case, global conditions will be far less benign for the United States and its friends (none of which are capable of filling the void) than the current environment. Mr. Obama is following Europe by increasing government budgets for social welfare and decreasing defense budgets, but, unlike our role in NATO, no one will cover our back. What our country needs but does not have, and which Mr. Obama is unwilling or incapable of supplying, is a great national debate on America’s place in the world. Properly informed, we will shoulder the responsibilities necessary to maintain our exceptional way of life.” BOLTON: Obama’s foreign policy based on belief that weaker U.S. is key to peace

She sends her regrets? Geeze.“Clinton’s “imperfection information” comment is another Benghazi lie and her “unforeseen consequences” were perfectly foreseeable. She did nothing before the attack because it would destroy the administration narrative about final victory in the War on Terror, then lied about the video afterward for the same reason. Newly declassified transcripts show top defense officials who briefed Obama on the day of the Benghazi raid describing it as a terrorist attack and telling the president so. Clinton had to know that as well, yet she’s been complicit in a lie agreed upon. The Senate Intelligence Committee said Benghazi was preventable. So is her presidency.” Hillary Clinton Sends Her Regrets On Benghazi

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Filed under 2014 Elections, 2016 Presidential Election, Benghazi, Big Government, Class Warfare, Common Core, Economy, Education, Foreign Policy, GOP, Hillary, Income Inequality, Millenials, Obamacare, Political Event, President Obama, Rep. Krysten Sinema, Taxes, War on Women