Category Archives: Olympics

News and Commentary for February 25

We need to do more than work hard for our candidates.

We need to do more than work hard for our candidates.

Stories of the Day

Read it and weep. “More than any president in my lifetime, Barack Obama has damaged virtually everything he’s touched. When it comes to American interests, he’s a one-man wrecking ball.” Obama Consciously Engineering America’s Decline

Intentional decline. “In The NY Times today, Pentagon Plans to Shrink Army to Pre-World War II Level: “Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel plans to shrink the United States Army to its smallest force since before the World War II buildup and eliminate an entire class of Air Force attack jets in a new spending proposal that officials describe as the first Pentagon budget to aggressively push the military off the war footing adopted after the terror attacks of 2001.” One year ago: Hagel nominated “to supervise … generation-long process of defense cutbacks”

“But while that is true to a point, the Obama administration is nevertheless taking an enormous gamble by cutting America’s defence capabilities at a time when many of its enemies are increasing theirs. Both China and Russia are in the process of revamping their military capabilities and, as the Russians have recently demonstrated in Syria, they are adept at using the mere threat of military force to achieve their strategic objectives.” America’s enemies will be delighted by the latest cuts to its military strength

“Former Vice President Dick Cheney said Monday that Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel’s proposed drastic cuts to the U.S. Army are “absolutely dangerous” and would cause long-term damage to the military.” Former Vice President Cheney calls Hagel’s proposed Army cuts ‘absolutely devastating’

“Our armed forces must be the only area of the federal government subject to actual cuts in the proposed budget. Elsewhere Obama has declared an end to the era of austerity that has supposedly tied his hands. It’s almost funny.” In search of antithesis

Can the world recover? “An increasingly messy world is looking for guidance. But not only does the United States refuse to be its policeman, it won’t even be its hall monitor. The utterly false choice in Syria articulated by Rice — America can do nothing because it won’t do everything — is noticed by the rest of the world. Obama threatened “consequences” if someone stepped “over the line” in Ukraine. Ah, another line. Is it red?” Susan Rice and the retreat of American power

Arizona

Mark my words, we’re going to lose the messaging war once again. Reminder: Our country was founded on religious liberty. Why have so many of us forgotten this? This: It is perhaps unfortunate that it has come to this, but organized homosexuality, a phenomenon that is more about progressive pieties than gay rights per se, remains on the permanent offensive in the culture wars. Live-and-let-live is a creed that the gay lobby specifically rejects: The owner of the Masterpiece Cakeshop in Colorado was threatened with a year in jail for declining to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding. New Mexico photographer Elaine Huguenin was similarly threatened for declining to photograph a same-sex wedding. It is worth noting that neither the baker nor the photographer categorically refuses services to homosexuals; birthday cakes and portrait photography were both on the menu. The business owners specifically objected to participating in a civic/religious ceremony that violated their own consciences. And the so-called liberals answer: “To hell with your consciences.”And this: “It is our hope that the people of Arizona will treat their gay fellow citizens with decency and respect. It also is our hope that they will be repaid in kind. Insofar as legal intervention is required in the matter, the need for legislative preemption of judicial coercion is an unhappy fact, and the Arizona legislature is right to act on it.” A Live-and-Let-Live Law

Big Government

Why should we trust them? “HHS said it would use the social media tool for public health concerns and emergencies such as Superstorm Sandy. “In the midst of an event we want to know when hospitals and/or nursing homes are evacuating patients,” HHS said under “scenarios of how we would utilize this tool.” HHS Seeking Access to ‘Full Twitter Historical Data’

Who made her queen? First lady Michelle Obama will unveil a proposal Tuesday that would ban marketing junk food and so”das in schools — an unusually aggressive position for the administration that could draw the ire of school districts, food companies and conservatives. Schools would no longer be able to house vending machines that sport images of their flagship sodas, have posters promoting unhealthy food and drinks or use cups in cafeterias that market high-calorie beverages, among other forms of promotion, according to administration officials.” Michelle Obama to unveil food marketing limits for schools

Debt

Hurling towards disaster. This: The president can delay his budget, but no good can come from further postponing our country’s desperately needed financial reforms.” And this: “The budget that America needs — versus the more likely budget shaped by concurrent political forces — are two very different things. As we prepare to receive and evaluate President Obama’s next submitted budget, it is worth knowing what a set of budget proposals would look like if focused on solving our escalating fiscal problems. Such a budget would rein in the growing cost of Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and the ACA. The extent to which the coming budget diverges from this blueprint is the extent to which other policy agendas are diverting us from urgently needed fiscal repairs.” Reform entitlements — or go bust

Speaking the truth, which apparently no one in Washington D.C. wants to hear. “Short-term thinking killed the “Grand Bargain,” the mythical compromise to avert a fiscal crisis that Democrats and Republicans know is unavoidable without slashing entitlement spending and/or raising taxes. Long-term thinking … well, there is none of that in Washington. Because long-term thinking requires courage and transparency, and such traits are dead to this town. Allow me to highlight two facts that President Obama and House Republicans, cowardly, don’t want their followers to know.” What Your Party Leaders Aren’t Telling You About The Debt

Elections

Scott Walker for president! “As Jonathan very correctly observes, Scott Walker’s public-sector union reforms, which he got enacted over extraordinary opposition, scare unions, Democrats, and possible GOP opponents alike should he decide to run for the Republican nomination in 2016. Unions face a massive loss of funds (and therefore political power) if his reforms spread to other states. The Democratic Party faces a loss of those union funds, which go overwhelmingly to that party. And the contenders for the presidency in both parties face the fact that Scott Walker, who comes across in both private and public as a nice, low-key, everyone’s-favorite-uncle sort of guy—a veritable unObama when it comes to self-regard and ego—has proved himself a political mensch of the first order. That could be a very potent combination in 2016.” Scott Walker’s Political Courage

Doing what needs to be done, in the right way. “Wisconsin’s previous Democrat governor, Walker pointed out, “had people on a waiting list living in poverty for health care.” But during Walker’s administration, for the first time in state history, they covered everyone living in poverty under Medicaid, and everyone above poverty is covered by transitioning them to the marketplace. That’s 224,000 more covered than before, “and yet, we don’t put the taxpayers at risk.” Gov. Walker: Success Not Measured by ‘How Many People Are Dependent on the Government’

Fairness

More truth. “Those who preach this counterproductive message will probably never think that the envy, resentment and hopelessness they preach, and the welfare state they promote, are among the factors keeping people down.” The ‘Fairness’ Fraud

Free Speech

They have to silence us because they have to silence those that speak the truth. “For half a century or so, IRS regulations have held that a political advocacy group maintains its 501(c)(4) status as long as “candidate-related political activity” is less than 50 percent of what it does. These groups have been able to meet this test because they are far more focused on citizen education and grassroots lobbying than on the election of particular candidates. This is where the new proposed regulation comes into play. In order to strike at these groups — most of which are conservative — the Obama IRS proposes to redefine “candidate-related political activity” to encompass most of what 501(c)(4) organizations normally do.” The IRS’s latest attempt to silence conservatives

Global Warming

It’s really about the power. This: Our friend Rob Bradley, founder of the indispensable Institute for Energy Research, has a brilliant post up on IER’s MasterResource blog today about how the all-important “carbon footprint” of the environmental movement is almost certainly positive (that is, their policies have led to a net increase in greenhouse gas emissions). And this: “So natural gas wins, nuclear loses, and climate loses by Hansen’s math because…. What to do when the wind is not blowing? The answer was: have a gas plant ready as back-up. In other words, replace carbon-free nuclear power with a dual system, renewables plus gas. With this approach CO2 emissions will increase and it is certain that fracking will continue and expand into larger regions. Me (Steve) again: Nice going enviros.  Of course, Hansen’s fundamental mistake is thinking environmental activism is actually about the climate.  Some day he’ll figure this out, and get really depressed.” Environmentalists: Carbon Bigfoots?

IRS

We need more people like her. “Cleta Mitchell may be the most dangerous woman in America. She is the prominent Washington attorney who represents several clients victimized by the criminal misconduct of the IRS over the past four years. She speaks with authority when she asserts, as she did recently in her testimony before a congressional subcommittee, that the Obama administration is responsible for “lies upon lies” covering up the multifarious, politically inspired wrongdoing of the IRS.” POWER LINE: Cleta Chronicles: IRS scandals, part 1, 2 and 3

The Left

Those on the Left live in a weird world. “Twitter lit up with ridicule of Power’s meditation on the significance of Pearl’s murder. One tweeter offered the simplest explanation: maybe she was on drugs. But she doesn’t seem the type. Rather, I think Samantha Power–who among fans of the Obama administration is considered a deep thinker!–suffers from the muddle-headedness that typifies most liberals. She can’t face the truth, which is that radical Muslims are an existential threat to civilization and freedom, with whom we can never be reconciled. So in lieu of truth, she emits platitudes about “cycles of violence” and so on. The sad reality is that her boss, Barack Obama, who has appointed her to a series of high-profile foreign policy positions, has just as incoherent a view of the world as she does.” Samantha Power Dives Deep…Into Incoherence

More on the Left’s weird world. “For Obama’s supporters, what matters is not what he does, but what he says and represents.” When Failure Is Success

Bubbles. “The new millennium has also given us a new American profile — the hip richeral. Richerals are, of course, well off. But they are even more cool and liberal. The two facts are not so much incompatible, as complementary. For some, big money allows three things: wealth’s cocoon enables you to dream safely about utopia rather than being laid off and broke; it exempts you from worrying much about the high taxes and regulations needed to pay for your redistributionist fantasy agendas; and it gives you the influence, capital, and opportunities to flee from the messy ramifications of your own ideology.” Meet the Richerals

What we need to do… “So the upshot: there is no point trying to open the zombie liberals’ eyes. It’s a total waste of time and energy. The real target should be the young whose minds have not yet completely closed and who still might be receptive to appeals to their common sense. “We’ll get you through your children!”, the lefty poet Allen Ginsberg yelled to his erstwhile fellow radical Norman Podhoretz. That’s exactly why the Bill Ayerses and Mike Klonskys have given up open terrorism and burrowed into the educational system to gnaw America from within. This is one field which conservatives can’t afford to yield; the battle should be joined.” Obeying the Dog Whistle

Minimum Wage

“A recent University of California, Berkeley, Labor Center study, “Fast Food, Poverty Wages,” shows that low-wage workers already get substantial government subsidies, such as food stamps and the earned income tax credit. The authors propose supplementing those programs with government-mandated wage hikes. But as conventional economics says, that would only worsen the poor’s plight.” The Minimum Wage Is No Friend of the Poor

Obamacare

“You won’t find chilly, insulated elites like Nancy Pelosi or Barack Obama admitting it, but the blood of Mrs. Blackwood and millions of other Americans harmed by their thoughtless legislation is on their heads. Obamacare is a totalitarian scheme masquerading as a humanitarian enterprise.  Its human cost is incalculable, but already, just a few months in, we’re beginning to get a sense of the suffering it will cause.  When your treatment for cancer is disallowed, when your daughter cannot get the medicine she needs, when your mother’s insurance is cancelled, will you still go gently into that good night of liberal sanctimony? Or will you finally realize that when Barack Obama promised to “fundamentally transform the United States of America,” this might not have been the beneficent program the New York Times and other such outlets led you to believe?” The Human Face of Obamacare

“Nearly two-thirds of small businesses that currently offer health insurance to their workers will pay more for coverage as a result of new rules in the health care law, as will millions of small-business employees and their family members, according to new estimates released by the Obama administration.” Obama administration: Health law’s new rules will increase costs for most small businesses

The reason? “These companies generally employ younger, healthier workers and so had been paying lower-than-average rates. But since ObamaCare bans insurance companies from considering health when setting premiums, these companies will get hit with higher costs.” 65% of small businesses face Obamacare premium hikes

President Obama

Where were all these people in November of 2012? “For the first time,” Gallup tells us today, “more Americans think President Barack Obama is not respected by other world leaders than believe he is.” The news is a bit worse for the president than it looks, as Gallup notes that “Americans’ opinions have shifted dramatically in the past year, after being relatively stable from 2010 to 2013.” While such perceptions often track closely with presidential approval numbers, Gallup explains, President Obama’s numbers have not followed that pattern: “a majority of Americans still thought world leaders respected Obama in 2010 and 2011, when his job approval was similar to what it is now.” Why the President Don’t Get No Respect

Ruling Class Elites

“America’s ruling class has been experiencing more pushback than usual lately. It just might be a harbinger of things to come.” Americans rising up against government: Column

War on Poverty

Nothing the Left does works out the way it was supposed to. “From the end of World War II until 1964 the poverty rate in this country was cut in half. Further, 94% of the change in the poverty rate over this period can be explained by changes in per capita income alone. Economic growth is clearly the most effective antipoverty weapon ever devised by man.The dotted line shows what would have happened had this trend continued. Economic growth would have reduced the number in poverty to a mere 1.4% of the population today, a number so low that private charity could probably have taken care of any unmet needs. But we didn’t continue the trend. In 1965 we launched a War on Poverty. And as the graph shows, in the years that followed the portion of Americans living in poverty barely budged. In 1965, 18% of the population lived in poverty. Today we are at 15%, or 50 million Americans. That’s after spending $15 trillion on antipoverty programs and continuing to spend $1 trillion a year.” Why We Lost the War on Poverty

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Filed under 2016 Presidential Election, Arizona Politics, Big Government, Debt, Freedom of Speech, Global Warming, IRS, Michelle Obama, Military, Minimum Wage, Olympics, Poverty and the Welfare State, President Obama, Religious Liberty, The Left

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 5

I think he's contemplating the size of Harry Reid's brain...

I don’t know about you, but I suspect that he’s contemplating the size of Harry Reid’s brain…

Stories of the Day

Whatever this guy is drinking, he needs to stop–NOW. “Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said the Congressional Budget Office report that shows Obamacare will make the labor force lose 2.3 million full-time workers by 2021 is positive because it lets Americans be “free agents.” “We have the CBO report, which rightfully says, that people shouldn’t have job lock. If they — we live in a country where there should be free agency. People can do what they want,” Reid told reporters outside of a close policy luncheon. ‘And what they’re saying here is — and the fact checkers have already done this — the Republicans talk about losing millions of jobs simply isn’t true. It allows people to get out of a job they’re locked into, because of — they have healthcare in their job.’” Reid: Obamacare Doesn’t Cost Jobs, It Turns Workers Into ‘Free Agents’

Not ready. “On the more mundane side of Sochi dysfunction, he says, is a deluge of half-finished projects, including unopened hotels and some where workers have yet to install heaters and air conditioners. There’s a mall where the only operating store is a Cinnabon. And some projects are completed but shoddily done. Segal says he accidentally pulled the handles off two doors in the Bolshoy Ice Dome, and said stray dogs were able to enter the heavily guarded media center.” New Arrivals Are Finding a ‘Soviet-Style Dystopia’ in Sochi

“I often wished that American “Democrats” would gain a greater understanding of everyday life under state control. Maybe then they would stop the flow of Harry Reids and Nancy Pelosis into our government. Now, looks like Sochi Olympics are about to offer at least a small, limited glimpse at that experience. Even in 20 years, you can’t undo the full extent of 70 years of damage to the national psyche, work mentality, planning practices, and infrastructure. North American media representatives arriving to the Sochi hotels were quite surprised,  if not shocked, to discover broken appliances, uncovered manholes, swarms of stray dogs, unflushable toilet paper, various outages, “rust water”, construction workers sleeping in the rooms, and other pleasantries. As the article puts it, they were having trouble ‘trying to find a hotel room fit for humans.’” Americans get a glimpse of Soviet life offered by Sochi

Amnesty

Don’t do it. “If Republican leaders go along with Democrats to pass this crazy amnesty plan, the issue of immigration will quickly become one of the most urgent issues in the country, especially among Republican voters.” Immigration will kill GOP, but only if it goes along with amnesty

Playing poker. “After taking the Senate in 2014, Republicans in both chambers of Congress should pass a rational immigration reform bill — one which the far left and the far right will both dislike — and use that as a crowbar with which to pry voters away from the Democrats. After all, in such a scenario, Republicans win politically whether Obama signs or vetoes the bill. Even a modest swing in the Hispanic (and Asian-American) vote toward a Republican candidate (or simply away from voting at all) could be the difference between a Republican victory and yet another disastrous defeat in a presidential election. I don’t buy the arguments that such a swing is impossible. With midterm elections only nine months away, jumping into a full-fledged immigration debate is a dangerous distraction, particularly when no good policy outcome is conceivable and when the best election issue stands, like a Valentine’s Day rose, as a fragrant vision for GOP candidates and a thorn in the side of millions, or tens of millions, of American citizens — and dozens of worried Democrats.” Immigration Strategery

Big Government

“Obama glibly tosses aside even the possibility of corruption in the IRS before the investigation is even complete while Lerner’s decision to clam up actively prevented further investigation into her role in targeting conservative groups for extra scrutiny and holding their applications in administrative limbo for longer than liberal groups. We can and we should take the negative inference from Lerner’s decision to invoke the Fifth Amendment. She had no reason to do so unless she believed a crime had been committed. I think we should take Lerner, who was present and involved in the event, at her word when she indicated that crimes might have been committed. Certainly Lerner is more credible on the topic than the President, who wasn’t even briefed on the matter.” Obama: There Isn’t Even A Smidgen Of Corruption At IRS

Economy

From the comments: “Behold, the marriage of Keynes and Marx. When the EPA intentionally infuses anti-capitalism into ENERGY and the IRS assaults free market liberty, the arrow for freedom points down, down and further down.” “The problem is NOT government spending, contrary to the well-meaning obsession of the Tea Party. That will BECOME the problem a decade or two from now. The problem now is obstacles to investment: the highest corporate tax rate in the world, onerous regulation, the crazyquilt uncertainty of Obamacare. America needs aggressive tax cuts and regulatory rollback. It also needs to spend more on infrastructure, which is becoming a major obstacle to growth. It needs to spend more on R&D, particularly on cutting-edge military R&D. The way to do this, I’ve argued for years, is to emulate Roosevelt’s alphabet-soup federal agencies and put unemployed Americans to work repairing infrastructure at $20 an hour, rather than paying $50 an hour to the construction unions. That’s heresy from a free-marketeer like me, but it makes economic sense and will drive the Democrats crazy.” The Exhausted U.S. Economy, and a Lesson for Republicans

Energy

“Affordable power dissolves liberal fantasies. White House wise men insist on spending the public’s money to promote retro power plants such as windmills, which went out of fashion with the Industrial Revolution. Eliminating the Keystone XL Pipeline, which would take cheap crude from the oil sands of Canada down to the Gulf Coast of Texas, is nevertheless a liberal priority.” Obama’s basketball strategy on Keystone XL

Hillary Clinton

Empty resume. “Let’s get back to messaging. The message here will be what it was in 2008 and to a lesser extent in 2012 — a chance to make history, this time by electing the first female US president. In fact, that’s all Hillary has. She has no track record of significant accomplishment in her eight years as a US Senator, and nothing at all to recommend her from her four years as Secretary of State. Even a Clinton ally like Lanny Davis couldn’t come up with a single data point in a tenure bookended by the “reset button” embarrassment and the debacle in Benghazi. Despite her outsize power in the Democratic Party, Hillary Clinton is simply a weak candidate and a mediocre-at-best campaigner — and that’s why Democrats should be hitting the panic button.” Team Obama: Hillary’s making her 2008 mistakes all over again

The Media

Class warfare at the NY Times. “Why do the reporters hate the editorial page? Let’s count the ways: 1) The editorial page editor, Andrew Rosenthal, is arrogant, petty and vindictive. 2) The news room has suffered deep cuts, while the editorial page is lavishly staffed, and yet turns out a lousy product. 3) The poor quality of the paper’s editorials is embarrassing: “they’re completely reflexively liberal, utterly predictable, usually poorly written and totally ineffectual.” Well, they aren’t totally without value. We have fun laughing at them.” Even the New York Times Hates the New York Times!

I think so many on our side are overly sensitive because we see what the Left is attempting to do by stealth to our country. So even minor things like this get us riled up. “This is something that not all that long ago nearly all conservatives would have understood. Yet today the ad by Coke is interpreted by some figures on the right as divisive and offensive, a Trojan Horse for immigration reform, as part of the Culture War. And the unmistakable message being sent by these individuals is that people of other cultures are aliens and threats and are therefore unwelcome. “Keep your mouths shut when it comes to our patriotic songs” is the message Messrs. Beck and Bolling are sending. What a brilliant way to appeal to a nation that is becoming increasingly diverse and multicultural.” A Disturbing Conservative Reaction to the Coke Ad

We’re tired of Liberal tyranny and hopefully more and more of us simply aren’t going to take it anymore. “PC nonsense???  The bien pensant are now jumping on Seinfeld because he had only white people on his show.  Of course, the comic was right about political correctness.  It’s not only the enemy of comedy.  It’s the enemy of human life — no more than fascism with a phony egalitarian face.  And Seinfeld, who is being accused of being a racist (natch), is less of a racist than any of his detractors.  But that’s par for the course these days. Both of these seemingly minor media dust-ups  are yet more indications that our society is at a tipping point.  A critical mass may be welling up against the tyranny of modern liberalism.  The next few years will be interesting — culturally and politically.” Seinfeld, the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times: Scenes from the Culture War

Obamacare

Going broke because of our ever-expanding welfare state. “Today the Congressional Budget Office upped the number of work hours lost due to Obamacare by a lot — in fact, they tripled their previous estimate. Work hours can be lost by employers reducing the number of jobs, but also individuals voluntarily dropping out of the labor force or not working as much. Our awareness of the second group owes much to the excellent microeconomic analysis done by University of Chicago economist Casey Mulligan. Mulligan has done a great deal of work looking at the growth of transfer programs such as food stamps and Medicaid and how these programs will discourage work, particularly for lower-wage earners. Today’s report shows that the CBO has moved substantially in Mulligan’s direction: Simply put, the large subsidies under the Affordable Care Act will drive many people out of the labor market.” Incentives Matter: Why Estimated Job Losses Under Obamacare Have Tripled

We tried to tell them, but they wouldn’t listen, because they didn’t really care. “There’s no doubt the Affordable Care Act will redistribute wealth in America. People at the top of the income ladder will pay more; people at the bottom will benefit. But how, exactly, will that work? A new study finds that Obamacare’s redistribution will be stunningly lopsided. Scholars at the liberal Brookings Institution have discovered that Obamacare will increase the income of Americans in the lowest 20 percent of the income scale, and especially in the lowest ten percent. But all other income groups — even people who make very modest incomes in the $25,000 to $30,000 range, as well as all income brackets above that — will experience a decline in income because of Obamacare. In other words, Obamacare is going to cost some of the very people it was designed to help.” Obamacare will reduce incomes of most Americans

More unintended consequences. “The Congressional Budget Office released a major study of the government’s budget and its effect on the overall economy over the next 10 years. In dull bureaucratic language, it delivers a devastating analysis of the inefficiencies, ineffectualities and problematic social costs of ObamaCare. The one-two punch: Virtually as many Americans will lack health coverage in 10 years as before the law was passed — but 2 million fewer will be working than if the law hadn’t passed.” Congressional Budget Office sends death blow to ObamaCare

“Democrats who plan on facing the voters this November by trying to change the subject to discussions of the minimum wage or vague talk about inequality must think again. Ignoring the devastating impact of ObamaCare on an economy that is still not fully recovered is not a winning strategy. Faced with an electorate that knows they are paying a heavy price in jobs, increased health-care costs, and poorer coverage, Democrats are going to have to do better than to tell the people that ObamaCare can’t be discussed.” CBO Political Dynamite: OCare Job Losses

Stop spinning. “In short, the administration’s dishonest and inadequate effort to spin the CBO’s report shows how damaging that report truly is with respect to Obamacare.” How the White House Tried to Spin Today’s CBO Report

I’m done, guys. If we’ve reached the stage of welfare-state decadence where it’s a selling point for a new entitlement that it discourages able-bodied people from working, there’s no reason to keep going. We’ve lost, decisively.” White House: When you think about it, 2.5 million fewer people working because of ObamaCare is good news

Whatever this guy is drinking, he needs to stop–NOW. “Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said the Congressional Budget Office report that shows Obamacare will make the labor force lose 2.3 million full-time workers by 2021 is positive because it lets Americans be “free agents.” “We have the CBO report, which rightfully says, that people shouldn’t have job lock. If they — we live in a country where there should be free agency. People can do what they want,” Reid told reporters outside of a close policy luncheon. ‘And what they’re saying here is — and the fact checkers have already done this — the Republicans talk about losing millions of jobs simply isn’t true. It allows people to get out of a job they’re locked into, because of — they have healthcare in their job.’” Reid: Obamacare Doesn’t Cost Jobs, It Turns Workers Into ‘Free Agents’

President Obama

“When he tortured the rules to pass health care, he destabilized politics and created the poisoned political climate and toxic divisions of which he and his allies complain. As Charles Krauthammer says, the Tea Party was created by Obama and health care, and the fierce fight against it echoes the manner in which it was passed. The “current unrest,” as he says, is “the residue of that hubris.” He’s right.He lives in his own little La La land.” Obama, suffering from his own hubris, blames everyone else

President Ronald Reagan

No more establishment types. “In that 1981 CPAC speech, Reagan recounted a recent conversation he had with his friend and political soul mate, Britain’s Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Reagan told Thatcher he believed that everywhere one looked in 1981 what Reagan called “the cult of the state” was dying, noting of the Soviet Union that “the largest planned economy in the world has to buy food elsewhere or its people would starve.” One suspects that were Reagan here today he would be disappointed that with the Soviet Union vanquished it is his beloved America that has now turned to the follies of central planning, this time of American health care. But he surely wouldn’t be surprised that those he called the “fraternal order” Republicans were suddenly finding themselves on the short end of the fundraising stick as that New York Times story tells us after studying the newly filed financial statements.” Return of the Reagan Revolution

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Filed under Amnesty, Big Government, Economy, Energy, Hillary, Obamacare, Olympics, President Obama, President Ronald Reagan, The Media

News and Commentary for January 21

It's National Hugging day. Find a friend and hug them!

It’s National Hugging day. Find a friend and hug them!

This isn’t getting near enough coverage so I am placing it on top. “[M]y friend told me that my colleague Jennifer Griffin, who was aggressively reporting on Benghazi, was wrong and that, as a favor to me, my friend in the Administration was telling me so that I could tell Jennifer so that she did not ruin her career. My friend was telling me to tell Jennifer to stop her reporting. Ruin her career? In 20 plus years, I have never received a call to try and shut down a colleague – not that I even could – this was a first.” Wow: Greta drops a bomb about White House trying “very hard” to get Fox not to report on Benghazi

Read the WHOLE thing. “In the margin of the teachers edition, the teacher is instructed to explain the term ‘fascist’ to the students and to point out that the term ‘fascist’ is now applied to all right-wing extremist groups.” Teachers ‘instructed’ to teach ‘all right wing extremist groups’ are fascist

Tell me again who the fascists are? “New York governor Andrew Cuomo, whose desire to be the Democratic nominee for president of these United States is embarrassingly palpable, has decided that those who do not share his views on abortion (Hooray!), scary-looking firearms (Horrors!), and the various political demands attached to organized homosexuality (Hand on heart!) are untouchables — “They have no place in the state of New York,” he says, “because that’s not who New Yorkers are.” The governor needs to meet some New Yorkers.” Who New Yorkers Are

Good for Hannity. “It doesn’t get much dumber than inviting people to leave your state because of their political beliefs. Apparently, Communists, anarchists, radical greens, eco-terrorists, and other far left loons are welcome to stay because “that’s who New Yorkers are.” Hannity to leave NY after Cuomo says conservatives not welcome

Is anyone surprised? “Corruption. “The Sochi Olympics are an unprecedented thieves’ caper,” says former deputy prime minister and opposition leader Boris Nemtsov. He claims that some $26 billion in phony costs may have been creamed off by contractors, many of whom are Putin cronies. Consider the new 31-mile road and railway that run from the beachfront town of Adler to the Krasnaya Polyana ski resort, overseen by Vladimir Yakunin, a former KGB general and Putin pal who heads Russian Railways. The new route into Sochi cost an estimated $8.7 billion — more than Vancouver spent staging the entire Winter Olympics in 2010. For that sum, calculated the Russian edition of Esquire, Russia could have paved the entire road with beluga caviar.” The Most Expensive, the Most Corrupt, and the Most Dangerous Olympics in History

Stay away. “Russia claims that security surrounding the Olympic Games in Sochi are a “ring of steel,” but at least for now it looks a little more like a grating. NBC reports that Russian security services are looking for three more women from the Caucasus who have threatened to conduct suicide-bombing attacks on the torch relay that will open the games, and NBC’s own analysts say that the ring of steel is mostly a myth.” Russia looking for three more “black widow” terrorists targeting Sochi Olympics; Update: One down?

Disaster if true. “It takes some chutzpah for Boehner to make his amnesty push now, given the sour jobs news, falling measured support for amnesty, and the need for party unity in the coming midterm elections. You’d think the employment news alone–almost 3 unemployed Americans for every available job–would cause savvy lobbyists to postpone any attempt to push for a massive addition to the unskilled and skilled workforce. (The Senate’s bill would add about 6 million extra immigrant workers by 2023 – in addition to the current illegals who’d be legalized.) Maybe that could fly in a boom. But now?” MICKEY KAUS: The Coming GOP Amnesty Sellout Push.

Repositioning U.S. power. “Collate the following: large defense cuts, the president’s suspicions that he is being gamed by the military, the pullout from the anti-missile defense pact in Eastern Europe, the pressure on Israel to give new concessions to its neighbors, the sudden warming up with an increasingly Islamist Turkey, the failed reset with Russia, radical nuclear-arms-reduction talks, the abject withdrawal of all U.S. peacekeeping forces in Iraq, the timetable withdrawals in Afghanistan, the new worries of our Asian and Middle Eastern allies, the constant euphemisms on the war on terror, the stepped-up drone attacks, the lead-from-behind removal of Moammar Qaddafi, the pullaway from Mubarak in Egypt, the support for Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood, the pink lines in Syria, the Iranian missile deal, the declaration that al-Qaeda was on the run and the war on terror essentially ending, the Benghazi coverup, and on and on.” Obama’s Recessional

Expected. “Insurance policies plunge into a “death spiral” when premiums don’t cover the cost of claims, causing rates to surge year over year and more and more beneficiaries to drop coverage. This “adverse selection” already appears to be underway in eight states including Maryland, Washington, Ohio, Texas and Indiana.” The Young and the ObamaCare-less

How many folks could have been insured for all the money being thrown into this disaster? “The Chicago-based consulting firm Accenture received a $90 million noncompetitive contract to become the Obamacare website’s new primary contractor. The no-bid deal puts the company that employed the man who developed the Obama campaign’s personality-tracking programs in charge of a website that possesses massive amounts of personal information despite severe security risks.” After firing CGI, no-bid contract for Obamacare site goes to firm whose former top researcher developed Obama campaign voter tracking

We all should be weeping. “But most of all, I wept in anger. I am overcome with rage at the elected politicians who have never served their country in uniform, never seen battle and yet make decisions that affect the life and death of their fellow citizens. I am so angry that our rules of engagement, made in courtrooms by people whose personal agenda has nothing to do with victory, restrict the ability of our military to do the thing we send them into battle to do: fight.” A woman’s thoughts on Lone Survivor. And a message to candy-ass liberals.

Not ready for Hillary. “Wait, wait, wait .  .  . We’ve forgotten something: Hillary would be the FIRST WOMAN PRESIDENT! That might be enough to get her to run and conceivably to get her elected. But Golda Meir and Margaret Thatcher hadn’t been first lady before taking power. Hillary will be the second Clinton president. That fact overwhelms her claim to first-ness. As a feminist, Hillary surely knows that when your husband’s been president, you’re not really breaking any glass ceilings on behalf of womankind. And lots of other women understand this as well.” Hillary? Really?

For the Left, the ends always justify the means. “But, then again, Dear Leader Barack Hussein Obama was ultimately responsible for the delays, non-actions, and talking points. The first thing we were taught in Army OCS is that authority can be delegated, but responsibility cannot. So, for Hillary, problem solved. Now all she has to do is explain why she lied under oath, as well as why she is trying to separate herself from Obama.” Hillary’s ‘Political Football’ Baggage

A long and winding road to the presidency. “Could Hillary Clinton be the next Richard Nixon? Now that’s a provocative question, but it isn’t quite what you think.” Hillary’s No Slam Dunk in 2016: Why She’s More Vulnerable Than Everyone Thinks

Good news! “While I was away seeking (and finding) global warmth in the Dominican Republic, voters in Northeast Arkansas sent an ominous message to Democrats by overwhelmingly electing a Republican in a special State Senate election. The Republican, John Cooper, captured 57 percent of the vote to win a seat (District 21) that has never been held by a member of his party.” Democrats take another hit in Arkansas

The Democrats are already screaming “War against women.” “If anything, the fact that we are only just learning the “fuller version” of Davis’s biography says less about her than it does about the media that have lavished her with adoring coverage over the past six months. But as Slater writes, the story is relevant because Davis “has made her personal story of struggle and success a centerpiece of her campaign” for governor. So why did it take so long to poke holes in her story?” Wendy Davis, Fibber

Not going along. “But he didn’t listen to the campaign, and the result is the implosion of Wendy Davis’ personal and political narratives.” Wendy Davis’ ex-husband: “They’ve asked me not to talk to reporters”

There are not enough rich people to pay for all this free stuff. “That new movement puts de Blasio squarely in the spotlight. He has big plans, like requiring private companies to provide mandatory sick leave and forcing developers to build affordable housing, whether they like it or not. And his “universal” pre-K programme would be a nationwide first, taxing the rich to come up with the needed $500m.” Bill de Blasio: the Left’s Nutty Professor Transforming New York into a Giant Political Petri Dish

We’ll trust the government again when we stop hearing stories of the government targeting conservatives. “Since then, of course, the new “weaponized IRS” has, in fact, come to be seen as illegitimate by many more Americans. I suspect that, over time, this loss of moral legitimacy will cause many to base their tax strategies on what they think they can get away with, not on what they’re entitled to. And when they hear of someone being audited, many Americans will ask not “what did he do wrong?” but ‘who in government did he offend?’” Government conspiracy theories aren’t crazy

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Filed under 2014 Elections, 2016 Presidential Election, Amnesty, Benghazi, Big Government, Class Warfare, Common Core, Foreign Policy, Hillary, Hollywood, IRS, Lies, Mayor De Blasio, Media Malfeasance, Middle Class, Millenials, Movies, Obamacare, Olympics, Political Corruption, Terrorism, The Left, War on the Military, Wendy Davis